MORE THAN HUMAN
MORE THAN HUMAN
-By Tim Hart-Woods
We’d all like to be, right?
Something more than the simple sum of our personal body parts. More than a pulpy, pot pouri of fatally fallible organs, capricious goo and unpredictable blood, subject to endless threats from inside and out, and the object of countless bacterial and viral invasion forces.
Not exactly a robot, ‘cos we need to live and love. But not exactly feeble, as we actually are.
Somewhere in between.
Less than a machine.
More than human.
In 1953, Theodore Sturgeon tickled at it in his book of the same name. He explored the idea of Gestalt, coining the term Homo Gestalt, which he used to describe an advanced evolutionary form of humanity that involved corporate awareness and where psychic abilities were the accepted norm. It suggested our next giant evolutionary leap forward may be based on the idea that the brain is, in it’s own right, holistic, and has self-organizing powers.
Disease, and the need for an immune system, of course, were nasty things from history.
How cool would that be?!
In 1967, microseconds along the evolutionary path, Gene Roddenberry was, perversely, more down to Earth when he approved the script of Star Trek episode 26, Errand of Mercy, in which the other, ‘forgotten’ Gene, (L. Coon) imagined a future when humans had not so much leapt, but been fired forward at literally the speed of light, to a form which involved them existing simply as bright starpoints of awareness charged with the energy of a billion years of evolutionary experience. With the colossal power of what we, the unevolved, can only pathetically call their ‘minds’, free from all need of an auto-immune system, they were able to easily thwart both the Federation and the Klingons, leaving JTK and his Nemesis of the day, Kor both strangley disgruntled that they were sent packing without a fight.
The Organians, as Coon called them, didn’t have to worry about getting sick.
Well maybe. One day.
For now we have to just hope that our antibodies will always come to the rescue and what we, with the spectacularly fantastic gifts of Sturgeon and Coon as a backdrop quaintly describe as our auto-immune system, will generally ‘fix us’.
Or do we?
There is evidence to suggest we are already ‘evolving’ as a result of factors actually within our control.
We English, for instance are significantly more evolved than you Americans when it comes to healthcare… Ok, you want to stop me, tell me to go live back in England if it’s so effing brilliant (it rains too much and my American wife would miss me) but I’m going somewhere with this.
From moment one in an American life an individual is battered, bombarded and brainwashed by TV, radio and other media advertising of ‘drugs’.
The first time I came on holiday to the US and saw ‘drugstore’ in neon, I had to smile and my teenage kids just fell about the place. A store where they sell drugs? Wow. ‘Drugs’ to a Brit are the things your folks tell you never to touch, experiment with, buy or sell.
But here the pharmaceutical industry is so huge that no one can even put an accurate figure on exactly how huge!
Why? It’s not rocket science. Americans are totally dependent on them.
Not in a Tylenol for a headache kind of way, but as a lifestyle. When I first met my wife all I had to do was to take a breath slightly too deep, rub an aching knee, or heaven forbid, actually make a comment about a random pain, and there it was;
“You need to get something for that!”
It was her predictably Pavlovian reaction, born of almost 40 years of brainwashing.
Of course I didn’t have to get something for it! Unless it was serious, it would go away of it’s own accord. My English, drug free and powerful immune system would deal with it.
Damage to my domestic budget – zero. Benefit to my perpetually tested ever-strengthening immune system – incalculable.
In the UK advertising pharmaceuticals on TV isn’t allowed. Neither is it needed.
Our doctors prescribe appropriate medications and we go and buy them from the pharmacy, (prescription costs are capped at the equivalent of $12). It’s the old hoo hah about not wanting something unless you’re told you can’t have it. Don’t panic America, Obama is well and truly defeated. The 1% controlling 40% of the wealth in this country have made sure Obamacare won’t get off the ground, let alone fly, and you’ll all be literally physically dependent on their drugs and the benefitting insurance companies forever. You’re safe from medical freedom.
And your immune systems will continue to degrade until you’re as weak as kittens.
Not hardcore like the Brits. (It’s no coincidence that you always want us to go to war alongside you!)
It’s that darned law of relativity thing again. The flipside of evolution is devolution, and there’s the plain facts.
Don’t believe me? Research the figures on pharmaceutical consumption country by country, then cross reference it to the production days lost through illness.
Anyway, stop me.
How else are we (as humans – not Americans) evolving?
What have we added to our auto immune systems that help us survive what once would have surely killed us?
Don’t you hate it when someone stands too close when they’re speaking to you?
If you don’t you’re lagging behind. Neanderthal even. We’ve developed ‘personal space’. It’s not just an odd thing we automatically have without knowing it until someone invades it, it’s part of our immune system. It reduces the transference of airborne bugs.
We wash ourselves with soap and hot water, we wash our clothes, we change our sheets.
We even clean our pets. We know about stuff we didn’t know about in the bad old days, when, as the Victorians famously decreed when considering bathing; Once a Month is Ample” and died on average at 52 years old.
We’ve invented things to help our immune systems along. We heat our homes to eradicate the danger of falling prey to a viral attack as a result of being weakened through cold, and cool them when it’s hot outside to ensure we reduce the number of infecting, tropical beasts that might just like to share a greenhouse with us. We wear all kinds of protection to stop them biting us and giving us Malaria or worse. We even shield ourselves from the effects of too much sun.
We are, in fact, already soooo much more ‘human’ than even our recent ancestors.
We have a personal private system for checking ourselves daily. Most of us don’t even know we do it. Think about it. When you shower, you step into the stream of water and set about the same ritual you perform every single day. (Unless you’re Victorian- leaning…) You get the soap or whatever you use, and your hands automatically go to the same part of your body every time. We’re all different but each routine is the same. Maybe your armpits first, then your sides, down the outsides of your legs, feet, then up the insides? Why? You’re checking everything is ok, like it was yesterday. Like it should be. No lumps or bumps. No sores or hurting bits you didn’t know about.
We look in the mirror. It’s not because we think we’re beautiful and want to bask in our own reflection. If it were we wouldn’t pull our lips back and check our teeth or go for that really scary close up look at our tired eyes and the worrying lines around them. Nope, it’s all part of our daily checking up on ourselves that, when added to what goes on inside, takes care, or at least warns early, of most of what might otherwise ‘GET US’!
We dare even say we check our bodily issues. Don’t squeam. We all do it, yes, even you. Why do you think you always look at something on the end of your finger you just raked out of your nose, or study what’s in your handkerchief after emptying the contents of your bubbling beak into it?
To confirm all is as it should be. No blood, no bugs up there.
After we defecate, we stand up, and… what next…? (Don’t think you’re the only one who does it!) Before we take full advantage of the wonderful invention of one Thomas Crapper, (who, contrary to general belief did not invent the flushing toilet but did develop the siphonic action by which ‘it’ is sucked down and away,) we do something else. Yes, you know it…
We have a look. Again we check everything is ok. No one wants to look down into the toilet pan and see they’ve just given birth to a mass of blood-soaked writhing worms. We just want to see it looks the same as yesterday, and the day before.
Then what do we advanced life forms do?
If you just thought ‘flush it’, you’ve just undone the work of the last bolt-on self-protectionist, human evolutionary leap, and catapulted yourself back down the devolutionary spiral to the 19th century.
PUT THE TOILET SEAT LID DOWN!
It’s what it’s for. Not as a comfy backrest. (think about that in a moment!)
The action of flushing water hitting the contents of your production pulverizes it and a fine invisible mist explodes from the toilet pan and carries with it tiny particles of poo up to fifteen feet from the bowl. It’s called fecal spray.
Where do you keep your toothbrush? Your floss? Your towels?
Toilet seat lids as an adjunct to our auto immune system.
We truly are wonderful beings.
The list of ways we have developed to make ourselves even more ‘immune’ than our evolved automatic system is endless, but no one is untouchable.
H.G. Wells literally punched it on the nose when, in 1898 incredibly, he wrote War of the Worlds, in which Martians, clearly believing themselves significantly more than human, invaded Earth with immense ferocity and vastly superior technology, subjugating us weak humans easily, only to succumb to a pathogenic bacteria to which they had no immunity.
Funny old world.
Perhaps, when we have evolved to Star Trek-like levels of techno and medico accomplishments, and strike out for the stars, having defeated all threats to us on Earth, we might do well take Well’s book with us as required reading.
In the meantime, start putting the toilet lid down, or at least move your toothbrush.
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