Note: This is an experiment. I am trying to write something for young people between around 8 or 9 and around 12 years old. It is aimed at being a series of pamphlets on how the human species and then human society evolved, ending with how capitalism evolved and what comes next. In other words, socialism. And – most important – what is necessary to overthrow the present order. If any readers have children in that age range – or grand children or nieces or nephews, etc. – it would be greatly appreciated if you would show them this and get their opinions. In fact, any opinions from adult readers are appreciated. And please don’t be too nice if you don’t think young people will find this interesting.
“How did we become humans?”
What do you mean, “become humans?” You have always been a human. Everybody you know has always been a human. Of course, we’re talking about evolution – how earlier species evolved into the human species.
But this leads to another question: “Why does it really matter?” After all, this happened a looong time ago (we’re talking millions of years). Now that we’re here, what does it matter how we became what we are?
It matters because it helps determine how we look at human society. That means, how we look at what people do in their everyday life. And if we can get a clear understanding of that, we can change it too. But to understand it, we have to look at how we got there, starting with how we – the human species – became what we are.
Religion vs. Science
It starts with the issue of evolution. And let’s not forget that a third of the people in the US don’t even believe in evolution.i What does this mean? In the US today, almost all people who reject evolution base their ideas on the Bible. This means that they simply accept that “god” has ordered things in a certain way; that’s how it always was and always will be. It means that they refuse to see that there are certain laws of nature. And that the number one law is that nothing stays the same; everything is changing – sometimes slowly and sometimes quickly, but change it does. That’s what we mean by a “law” – not like the laws like what congress passes, but simply general principles, general ways, in which nature operates. For instance, at sea level, when water is heated to over 212 degrees Fahrenheit it “boils”, meaning it turns into vapor. That is a simple law of nature, but a lot of other laws are much more complex.
The human species is not separate and apart from nature. The same laws that determined how we evolved – that is, how we changed over millions of years – determined how our societies evolved and developed. And, as we say, once we understand those laws we can use them to our advantage.
What is Evolution?
So, first, what is evolution and how does it work?
Read more: How We Became Humans