The Evolution Of Societies And Your Health

Obviously we did not started with a laptop on the desk and a cup of joe on the side. Things were so different many years ago. What you have now is not even a dream nor an imagination thousand of years ago. If our ancestors could exist for a second in front of us, they would be dumbfounded of what you have now and how far you have been in terms of technology and knowledge – where they only have the axe and the hoe as their only form of sophistication.

So, does this mean that one society is better than the other? Of course not. Each and every society has its featured pros and cons. Each society bears with them their own Yin and Yang – the brighter and the darker side of it, more in particular health and lifestyle related. So far, in this writing there are only three significant evolutionary epochs humans have endured or have shaped – Hunting and Gathering Epoch, Agricultural And Farming Epoch, and the Industrial And Corporate Epoch.

These evolutions are human struggles to adapt to the world they’ve been thrown in. We are not even talking yet about humans’ natural inclination to bewilderment about his confinement into this valley of tears. We’re just about to discuss human physiological and psychological evolution throughout this epochs.

Just a short jest, there could only be two eras in this evolution – Agricultural and Industrial. But since we cannot deny that there is one particular era that went before time, we need to include it. And that is no other than the time where humans are still nomadic, hunters and gatherers. It is the time where humans have no qualms in life but ephemeral gratification and survival in the literal wilderness.

The agricultural epoch is the time where humans adapt to nature, while the industrial epoch is the time where humans let nature adapt to them instead.

1. Hunting and Gathering

In this era, time is non-existent. They wake up and gather when the sun is up and hit the sack when the darkness knocks them off. They live on caves and treetops. This is the time where they choose homestead for safety and warmth rather than luxury. Their given duties are simple, men as the most able-bodied, go for hunting games and edible prey while women gather roots, nuts, fruits and vegetables.

This kind of lifestyle ensures aerobic motions without them knowing it. The act of foraging, running after a prey and carrying the spoils moves the body in a healthy way. Upon returning, they would feast to whatever they have gathered. These ancestors of ours consumed so much healthier, wilder and cleaner food that time. Fruits and veggies are unadulterated and free from pesticides. Add to that the soil where they forage the produce are highly nutrient dense for the nutritional upkeep of the plants. Meats on the other hand were at its purest. They are caught in the wild where there is no constraint of fences and no antibiotics, hormones and genetic modifications.

Source: Dual Dove

Their social and family life were definitely simple. Caring attachments are no conscious effort for them. They naturally cohere with each other in deep emotional bonds brought about by their condition.

They essentially hunt and gather for like five days, and rest for the next 3 or 4 days before doing the same activity again. Their routine basically solicits from the body the natural psychological rhythm – could be stress response, homeostasiscircadian rhythm, adaptation instincts.

Of course, on the flipside, life is a little harder for them. Mobility is an issue, especially carrying bulky goods. The leading cause of deaths are biological trauma, infectious disease, childbirth and other incidents.

Nevertheless, quick lessons for us modern citizenry. Their body and psychology are highly and consciously attuned to nature’s blueprint. The two cogs mesh together into one symphony of an ideal elan vital human being.

But as soon as the human population exponentially grew, demand to food ratio became inverted. The abundance of sustenance came to a breakdown from a breakeven ratio. So, one major shift came into being. From being wanderers and gatherers, these ancestral tribes tend to relocate and reclaim lands for steady farming and livestock raising. This is also the time where shifts from free-for-all to entitlement and ownership started to brew.

2. Agricultural And Farming

It is in the agricultural era that mobility and exercise decrease a little. People at this time are living a structured way of life. Not much to do during the non-cropping season. Foraging has decreased. Hunting is no longer practiced as frequent as it was before. Relaxation and rest are practiced on seasonal terms. Caring attachment and emotional bonds are still maintained significantly.

It is also during this time that farming for tobacco products has been introduced. Saturated fats in meat products increased due to domestication. Life stress tends to crop-up in the thousand year span during the adjustment from the hunting era to the agricultural epoch. Life stress begins when significant changes from high mobility survival to an almost immobile way of life is implemented. It is in high mobility and close contact with the wild where our physiology’s first blueprint was intended for. But as soon as human physiology and psychology started to adapt, life stress tended to lessen up.

But then again, from this adjustment comes another form era that needs significant adjustment for agricultural humanity. For the first time in history, individuals are no longer required to hunt and run after a wild game to get fed or even to survive. Humanity has now mastered nature and let nature adjust to himself instead. The use of advanced agricultural machineries, computers, meteorology and pesticides greatly expedite the production of food to get even and feed the exponential growth of the human population.

This is also the moment in history where humans transpired from gathering and farming for survival to leisure and affluence. This is the time where humans start to take food for granted because it is now produced mechanically at fast paced. Yet this is not true for humans in some part of hour history. This is also the beginning where humans no longer think so much about distance of mobility with the advent of domesticated beasts of burden all the way to modernized mechanical transportation. Again, this is not true in all of human history. Our human ancestors may have never traveled as far as ten miles from their place of birth for the rest of their lives.

This is also the era where people opt to live in an urbanized dwelling from a rudimentary lifestyle of farming and survival. This time, humanity has moved from the subjugation of the king and the landlords to a free and composed citizen of a country. Now, individuals are transcending from mere survivors of the wild to a fully disentangled highly realized individual.

Where is this bringing us? No one really knows. What we surely realize is that this development is giving us much leverage in the facet of developing goods and services but dramatically demeaning our physiological blueprint. Another thing we are sure about is that, with all these developments happening, posits another form of society – the industrial and corporate era.

3. Industrial And Corporate

This era is categorically dated during the supposed Industrial Revolution of the 1800s. This is the very era where we are now. We don’t know yet with sharp certainty what the next era will be. This era is a far cry from the nomadic era we’ve discussed. This is the era where production of goods and services are expedited more than we’ve ever expected. From our own body as the beast of burden to produce goods and services, now we have assigned it to machineries that know no time or rest.

If you come to think about it, why all these changes? Why not just stay foot on the hunting, gathering or agricultural periods? It’s not just sustainable for the earth at large but physiologically healthy for all of us.

Supposed Foundation of Industrial Age

Two noted philosophers strike a deeper note on these changes, more in particular the modern and industrial age. Rene Descartes for himself rationalized that reason is the major exponent for change. Reason is the resource for adaptive living. Not only adaptive but human being’s propensity for commodious living – comfort, ease, minimization of pain and the amplification of pleasure.

G. W. F. Hegel gives emphasis on the “inevitable sequential changes.” He likened it to his “Thesis”, “Antithesis” and “Synthesis”. It says that in every status or event he called Thesis there arises an equivalent force or counterforce he called Antithesis which then leads to the resolution of the event, the Synthesis. Wars, revolution and other momentous events of human condition are potpourri of element for the sequential change which is inevitable.

But steering the murky water clear, we will come to the general conclusion that the real McCoy to society’s metamorphosis is Science and Technology. Take it away, and we’ll be back living in the cave.

Science, Technology and Stress

Straight ahead, we know that computers are the pinnacle of the human brainchild and the flagship of science and technology. Computers have revolutionized changes in our industrialized society. In fact, the world has changed furiously in the next 50 years with computers than the past 500 years before it. And with the compounding power computers have become, the next 25 years as theorized, will be a blinding change that will pass in front of our face faster than the speed of light.

But this change will not come to pass without taking a toll into our physiology. Human blueprints, could be physiological, emotional or physical, are not designed to cope up with rapid changes. Or at least never had evolved significantly even to just get even with fast changes. Building a caring relationship takes time and labor. Developing a full grown human being, at least physically, takes time and labor. And in the agricultural era, growing your crop takes a season before the harvest. So, basically, it seems that everything takes time and labor before you can enjoy its fruition. No worries for the time we spend naturally building worthwhile relationships, growing crops and raising a human being because that’s what nature has intended us to be. However, it seems that technology is overriding that natural blueprint and rushing us towards uncontrollable pace derailing us towards getting out of control.

But since we already found ourselves passengers in the speeding industrial train, our physiology needs to get even with the demands of society, and these demands are literally stressful to our body and mind as well. What is even worse is that your worth as a human being is now being defined by how fast you meet the demands of the society. This meeting of the demands by the society are best performed by the puppets of the corporate world known as employees.

Corporation And Stress

Human beings are dynamic creatures beyond physical evolution. Human psyche is the breeding ground of all these changes since nomadic times. We might have evolved as industrial nomads, but it seems that our body and health failed to evolved with it. We may have sophisticated healthcare systems, but notice, that at the back of the spectrum are the increasing health predicaments. Cancers are exponentially increasing. Death toll from heart disease, diabetes, cancers, obesity are getting doubled every year. All these happening in front of the glaring advancement of the health care system around the world.

Note that heart disease is not even in the top ten list of mortality before the 1900. It seems that the industrial revolution is taxing the body in an untoward way in contrast and comparison to our hunting and agricultural ancestry. It seems that when we are just sitting on a cozy couch watching movies till we drop or sit at your office desk for 8 to 10 hour a day, we become sicker. While people plowing on the field seems to be in good physical composure.

Obviously, our body has failed to evolve yet into getting healthier while setting as opposed to being mobile and getting healthier. Our body failed to evolve into adapting to modern toxins laced into our industrialized dietary lifestyle. And it has failed to evolve into adapting to the industrialized demands of the society, categorically known as the corporate world.

The Resolve

Are we going to jump out of the speeding industrialized train, alight calmly or just push the freak out button to slow down the ride? We don’t know for sure what could be the most palpable choices. But if I could choose, I would alight the train calmly and ride on another trip that runs on a much slower speed. Speed that will enable me to savor the view of the outside world while on the train.

We cannot choose one social evolution over the other. You can’t! What you do is have a slice of everything. You still have in you the blueprint of the hunting and nomadic man as well as the agricultural one. You can practice the features of these societies by striking the balance of each world. Go, explore the wild once in a while as a nomadic you. Be with nature – mountain climb, go grounding, camping, fishing, go chase some games. Just go wild in the outdoors!

You can express your agricultural blueprint by observing a green healthy diet once in a while, or better yet go on a plant-based diet – a diet with less to no carbon footprint in them. Grow your own food. Think of a more sensible choice between putting up a pool or a herb garden instead.

Source: Gainesville

Think sustainability!

In your office space, think mobility. Always, think of how you can move your body on regular intervals. They say that “sitting is the new smoking”. Could it be true or not, you’d better believe it. Why not purposefully set far away from your water dispenser or from your office printer. Or park way farther from your corporate offices?

Whatever you do, just move that body or yours!

And finally, remember, if there is anything we can’t live without, that would be Agriculture. Our physiology has not evolved yet (or may not even evolved) into not needing organic consumption like the food we eat, which whatever modification we do, always comes from the fruit of the agricultural lands. You can do away with technologies like the internet, your phone, your Netflix, your laptop and you would still be fine. But not with agriculture where it is not only the closest facet to our gut but is actually connected to it.

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