A recent Radio EcoShock interview of Ajit Varki on the topic of denial really hit home. A commenter chimed in with the notion of ‘willful blindness’, discussed by Margaret Heffernan. This, coupled with the commentary over at Decline of The Empire, for me, puts a few more nails in the coffin regarding our species.
All of these bad traits seem to stem from our biology, and it looks like there is no way out. Technological solutions won’t work (anything from solar energy to Star Trek-style replicators), because our human nature will take over, and we’ll wind up where we are today.
One option, as noted by more than a few folks, is that we’ll just go extinct, as countless other species have done over the billions of years. The option of survival seems pretty slim; John Michael Greer (now posting at Ecosophia.net) posited a bunch of new species will rise and fall in the next ten billion years, and that seems to be the most likely scenario.
The only other scenario that might be considered is that we do the evolution ourselves, but that would require a good deal of rewiring. We might not even be the same species; going from homo sapiens to homo X, where the X is Latin for awareness, conscientiousness, or self-honesty; homo cogitantium; homo honestam (help me out here on the Latin, folks – online translations seem a bit fishy…).
- Is this possible, or just another wish for a techno-fix?
- Might the surviving humans in JMG’s story be essentially a new species? Would those survivors just be “random” survivors (just lucky), or, would they have a “no blindness” gene somewhere down in their core DNA?
- Can a species achieve the same sort of technological base we have without willful blindness? Does it even matter?