Monday, October 08, 2007

What Differentiates The Human Being From Other Animals?


The Ability To Set Goals And To Achieve Them - That's What

There are many differences between human beings and the rest of the animal kingdom. One of the most important is the ability to have goals.

image by omster-com, stock.Xchng

Look at the animals, they simply take birth and eat and give birth and die. In quite a few cases, animals are automatically cared for by Mother Nature for their food. And in cases where a complex social structure is in place, such as ant and bee colonies, a being that takes birth does so with its fate and destiny already pre-determined at the time of its birth.

image by gulden, stock.Xchng

Witness, for example, the drones and the queen and the worker ants. What destiny a ant will have when it comes to life is decided in advance. So you have the worker ant whose job is to slog, slog and slog. Which it does happily, for it knows not any other form of existence. The drone does nothing but eating and fornicating. And then dying soon after his sex act. The queen bee's goal is to get herself inseminated while in flight, and then found a new colony. Can we call their activities goals? Goals they are, in a way. But all driven by Mother Nature. They neither possess the mind, nor the wherewithal, to do anything other than what they are ordained to do.

Ants making their way - Uni of Melbourne site

Not so with humans.

Human beings can, theoretically, live off the raw material that Mother Nature provides. Hell, this was how they subsisted in the Cave Age! But tell a human being today to go pluck a pizza from a tree somewhere! And unlike the animals, a child's fate and destiny are not stamped on its forehead when it emerges from the mother's womb. It has to create its own fate and destiny. There are no predefined roles to be played. So, it is entirely possible for a child to grow up and fly a space shuttle, for example, and for another to find out the cure for the latest life-threatening disease. Mother Nature has not imposed any limitation to what a human being can do.

image by torif2m, stock.Xchng

This is the reason why it is important to have goals in one's life. Can you live a life without goals? Yes, sure, why not? Only, there wouldn't be much difference between your life and those of the animals. Simply breathing in and breathing out is not living. Simply foraging for food is not living. Simply procreating and producing children is not living. Living is defined by all these, plus there is an additional component: that of having a goal, or a set of mini-goals in life. And striving to achieve those goals. It is goals that distinguish man, a being of higher intelligence, from the rest of the animal world.

image by KLatham, stock.Xchng

Reflect on your own feelings and emotions when you observe a fellow human being achieving something. Does it make you feel envious? Or does it make you feel inspired? Do you look at yourself in self-pity and sigh? Or are you plain indifferent? Envy and inspiration are an indication that you already have a goal in mind, but are perhaps yet to set it in stone and work upon it. Self-pity is a signal from your subconscious that you, too, should think about a goal for yourself. Indifference implies that you are too steeped in some pre-conditioned way of thinking to understand what it means to be really alive.

image by gabriel77, stock.Xchng

Reflect. Discover yourself. Find out what it is that makes _you_ tick. And put that thought into a concrete goal. For that is the freedom Mother Nature has given you as human being. To be the Master of your own Destiny and not live to die like yet another worker or drone or queen ant.

image by brokenarts, stock.Xchng

And having decided upon your goals, set out to achieve them. Here is one very good self-hypnosis audio program that you can listen to everyday, to keep yourself going, when the going becomes rough at times: Costs USD 12.95 for a download, USD 25.95 for a CD.

Hypno Box

No comments:

Post a Comment