Hope and Joy (The ‘God’ Gene)
Paul Seymour © 2010
This may lift you from despair and rekindle your joy. It’s only the perspective of an ordinary man but even ordinary men are sometimes whispered secrets by angels.
The questions: “Why are we here”, “What’s it all for” and “Is there any point to life?” often creep like cold shadows into our consciousness. For some it happens because their lives seem empty and without love. For others it’s the apparent trap of being stuck in a job and humdrum existence, with no future prospects. And for some of us, like me, it’s the terrible darkness of living in a world of pain, the pain of others, which can prevent us from feeling true happiness because of our compassion.
We live in a predatory world. The very existence of life depends on death. This is not necessarily a dark thought. None of us know the true nature of death. Many religions claim to know but, of course, they don’t. It’s all speculative and the product of imagination. The one thing we do know is that we are alive and conscious and that one day we will not be. All living things seem most content when they drift into sleep. Perhaps death is as warm and comforting as that.
To my mind this incredibly complex matrix of life on our planet must have a purpose. Survival seems meaningless just for its own sake. We humans often lose sight of the fact that we’ve only been on Earth for a short time. To give you an idea:
Let’s condense the four and a half billion years of our planet’s history into one week. The first day Earth was molten, it rained for two days, life arrived on the third day. Dinosaurs didn’t arrive until the last day and humans arrived two minutes ago!
The whole of human history, from our earliest ancestors, through all the migrations and then all the silly wars through to the present day, all happened in the last two minutes! And we wonder why we haven’t yet grasped the meaning of life.
From this comparison we can clearly see that it’s not OUR planet. It wasn’t made for us. The life on Earth isn’t here for our convenience. We’re the newcomers. Yet humans are probably the first life-forms that question their existence. Our brains have evolved to solve complex problems far beyond the need for mere survival. Our imaginations are capable of so much more than creating a safe environment and our emotions have evolved past the natural mammal response of loving our children or our kin.
Here’s my theory; the idea that some ‘angel’ whispered to me:
Perhaps consciousness always existed. Perhaps that’s what God is. Would the Universe exist if there were no consciousness to perceive it? We’ll never know in this mortal life. But let’s assume consciousness is one big cloud of thoughts and emotions and it infuses itself into certain combinations of atoms, namely Nitrogen, Oxygen, Carbon and Hydrogen and that is what ‘Life’ is.
And ‘Life’ has a will to survive and improve. It constantly tries to improve.
So, millions of years pass: countless generations of plants and animals living, feeding, breeding and dying. What for? Perhaps for the sole purpose of improvement.
The life-forms have become so complex, so clever in design it almost suggests there is an intelligence at work. ‘Intelligent Design’ the Creationists call it but sadly they are stuck in a silly adherence to beliefs which don’t allow for actual human intelligence.
After billions of animals have come and gone in this grisly, violent, predatory battle to survive and improve, suddenly there are these small almost hairless creatures who can pick up rocks and sticks and make things to improve their lives. They get cleverer and more imaginative but, more importantly than their technological skill, is their ability to FEEL for others, to care for, not only their own young, their own kin, their own tribe, their own species, but they are able to care for all living beings who can feel joy and pain.
This is the most important thing that has happened in this World’s history.
I call it ‘The God Gene’ and I believe it has evolved in us for a purpose. Not to place us above any other being. Not to allow us to exploit this planet any more than we already have, not to improve HUMAN life, but to improve Life in general.
So, when you feel that dark despair creeping in, and when you feel there’s no hope or no reason for existing at all, TAKE HEART…. literally. Look into your heart. The answer is there, built into our DNA. We are not here to exploit or kill or cause suffering and certainly not just here to survive. Humans have an important purpose. Every one of us. We have the ability to heal, to give care, to ease suffering, to end the predatory cycle we’ve been infected and poisoned by.
We are here to improve the World and improve the lives of every living thing. When we realise this, no not just realise (as in understand), but REALise it, make it REAL, The World, I believe will start to become a Paradise again and the human spirit will be lifted out of darkness and into eternal light, hope and consciousness.
Let’s do it.