Debunking the ‘savage instincts’ excuse for human behaviour
Our behaviour is NOT a product of savage animal instincts but the result of a psychosis that can now be healed
By Jeremy Griffith, 2018
This is Freedom Essay 2 of the Freedom Essay Series
Humans are aggressive and ruthlessly competitive because, like other animals, we have savage instincts derived from a need to reproduce our genes — right? Actually, no. In this short video, biologist Jeremy Griffith explains that humans’ selfish behaviour is NOT a product of savage animal instincts within us, but the result of a psychosis that can be healed through understanding — a revelation that has the power to transform the human race. (Jeremy presents the redeeming explanation of the human condition in the next video in this series, Video/F. Essay 3.)
So, in case you haven’t already watched this exposé of the dishonest way we humans have been excusing our selfish behaviour, we urge you to watch it now:
This video also appears as Video 2 in the Introductory Series of videos at the top of our homepage at www.humancondition.com.
The Transcript of this video
Following on from the first video, what I would now like to say is that when it comes to the issue of human nature I know nearly everyone uses the excuse that our competitive, selfish and aggressive behaviour is due to us having savage animal instincts, which are driven by the need to reproduce our genes. I mean, our conversations are saturated with the excuse, with comments like: ‘We are programmed by our genes to try to dominate others and be a winner in the battle of life’; and ‘Our preoccupation with sexual conquest is due to our primal instinct to sow our seeds’; and ‘Fighting and war is just our animal nature expressing itself’. But surely this idea that we have savage competitive and aggressive instincts is just a convenient excuse while we searched for the real reason for our competitive and aggressive behaviour. After all, words used to describe human behaviour such as egocentric, arrogant, inspired, depressed, deluded, pessimistic, optimistic, artificial, hateful, cynical, mean, immoral, brilliant, guilt-ridden, evil, psychotic, neurotic, alienated, all recognise the involvement of OUR species’ fully conscious thinking mind. They demonstrate that there is a psychological dimension to our behaviour; that we don’t suffer from a genetic-opportunism-driven ‘animal condition’, but the psychologically troubled HUMAN CONDITION.
Also, we humans have cooperative, selfless and loving moral instincts, the voice or expression of which we call our conscience — which is the complete opposite of competitive, selfish and aggressive instincts. As Charles Darwin said, ‘The moral sense perhaps affords the best and highest distinction between man and the lower animals’ (The Descent of Man, 1871, ch.4). (I might mention that in Video/F. Essay 4 I provide both the irrefutable evidence for, and the biological origins of, our species’ wondrous cooperative and loving ape ancestry, which our moral instincts are the result of.)
So saying our behaviour stems from having competitive, selfish and aggressive instincts like other animals is simply not true; as I say, it’s just a convenient excuse while we waited for the psychosis-acknowledging-and-solving, real explanation of our competitive and aggressive behaviour, which is what FREEDOM presents, and I’ll be presenting in the next video (Video/F. Essay 3).
I now need to point out that this excuse that we are victims of competitive, selfish and aggressive instincts also implies that our nature is fundamentally unchangeable, and this has led to the false belief that there will always be bad people, that there will always be wars, murders, inequality and so on — and that the meaning of life is just to try, as best we can, to manage those supposedly innate, unchangeable aspects of our make-up. But again, this overlooks the fact that we suffer from a psychologically troubled human condition — and a psychosis can be healed with understanding.
Most significantly, the left-wing’s culture of dogmatically imposing cooperative, selfless and loving ideal/politically correct values has also been allowed and empowered by this false belief that we have unchangeable competitive, selfish and aggressive instincts, because if those are our instincts then it reasons we have no choice but to dogmatically enforce cooperative, selfless and loving behaviour. But, as just emphasised, this overlooks the fact that we suffer from a psychologically troubled condition that can be healed with understanding. (See more explanation of left-wing culture, including Marxist Critical Theory, in Jeremy’s booklet Death by Dogma on our homepage.)
So our divisive behaviour is not unchangeable, and furthermore, it’s healing understanding we need, not dogma. Dogma is the opposite of understanding — in fact dogma stops the search for understanding/knowledge because it stifles the freedom of expression needed to search for, experiment with and by so doing find, that healing understanding/knowledge: dogma is not the cure for the troubled state of the world, it is the poison! So, convenient as it has been, the use of the savage instincts excuse has been incredibly misleading and dangerous — which I explain much more about in Video/F. Essay 14.
What I also want to say here (and I explain more about this in Video/F. Essay 14) is that the famous Harvard University biologist E.O. Wilson, who as I mentioned in the previous video rightly acknowledged the importance of solving the human condition, was the leading proponent of this extremely dangerous false savage instincts excuse for our competitive, selfish and aggressive behaviour, even putting forward a completely dishonest savage instincts-based so-called ‘explanation’ for our ‘good and evil’, psychologically conflicted human condition!
So that’s the importance of the psychosis-addressing-and-solving, real explanation of the human condition in FREEDOM. It reveals that so-called ‘human nature’ is a product of an underlying psychological insecurity about whether we humans are fundamentally good or not — and because the fully accountable explanation in FREEDOM is SO redeeming and healing, it brings a complete and permanent end to our insecurity-driven destructive behaviour, completely transforming all humans into secure and happy beings. It shows that our species’ psychosis can be healed with understanding and is not at all immutable or unchangeable.
That is why the front cover of FREEDOM features this wonderful sun rising over the horizon bringing us the long sought after dawn of understanding. Light/the sun has always been the metaphor for knowledge, and that’s what’s arrived. And you can see the people on the horizon are dancing for joy that this understanding of the human condition is finally here. Also, this little booklet, Transform Your Life And Save the World, is the condensed version of FREEDOM. You can download both books for free from our website, or purchase them from bookstores, including Amazon.
So I really urge you to watch the next short video where I present the psychosis-addressing-and-solving, REAL explanation of the human condition.
These essays were created in 2017–2021 by Jeremy Griffith, Damon Isherwood, Fiona Cullen-Ward, Brony FitzGerald & Lee Jones of the Sydney WTM Centre. All filming and editing of the videos was carried out by Sydney WTM members James Press & Tess Watson during 2017–2021. Other members of the Sydney WTM Centre are responsible for the distribution and marketing of the videos/essays, and for providing subscriber support.
This article was originally published at www.humancondition.com.