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Freedom: Expanded Book 1The Old Biology

Part 4:12I The Theory of Eusocialitythe most dangerous lie in human history

Introduction

The question that may arise from what has just been explained about how completely untrue and dishonest D.S. Wilson and Sober’s Multilevel Selection theory is, is why give it all this attention? The answer is because it has been parlayed into the most dangerous lie in human historyso dangerous because the lie is so seductive that it has the potential to keep humanity living in the darkness of alienated denial forever; or at least until the human race becomes extinct from terminal levels of alienation. The Multilevel Selection theory has become the basis of a whole new, supposedly biology-based excuse for humans to use to avoid any confrontation with their psychologically upset human conditionand this latest incarnation is by far the trickiest of all the excuses we have seen.

What has happened is that someone was watching the emergence of the between-group selection argument and saw that it had the potential to be developed into the equivalent of nothing less than a new Bible for the human race, a new description and contexting of the whole issue of our troubled human conditionbut, in this instance, it’s a completely dishonest interpretation. It is not hard to guess who that perpetrator is: yes, it is none other than that lord of lying, duke of denial, bishop of bullshit, king of ‘krap’; that master of keeping humanity away from any truth; indeed, the quintessential anti-ChristEdward O. Wilson himself.

As mentioned in Part 4:12D when his development of Sociobiology was being presented, E.O. Wilson has an extremely astute radar for ideas in biology that have the potential to artificially relieve humans of the unbearable agony of the human condition. Indeed, his antenna for ways to evade the human condition is as astute as St Paul’s was in seeing the potential of Christianity to save the human race from self-destruction while it was waiting to find self-understandingthe big difference being that E.O Wilson’s antenna was for spotting ideas that, while immensely influential, actually have the potential to destroy the human race, not save it.

Paradoxically, D.S. Wilson’s intention when developing the Multilevel Selection theory was to provide a way to counter the right-wing’s selfishness-emphasising theory of Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology, but what E.O. Wilson could see was that the theory could be used to justify selflessness and selfishness, thereby supposedly satisfying both the left-wing and right-wing camps; moreover, it could be used to provide a completely fake, human-condition-avoiding-not-human-condition-confronting biological explanation for our ‘good and evil’-afflicted human condition!! While D.S. Wilson and Sober were recognising a ‘good vs evil’, ‘niceness’ vs ‘nastiness’, human-condition-like duality when they wrote that ‘our goal in this book is not to paint a rosy picture of universal benevolence. Group selection does provide a setting in which helping behavior directed at members of one’s own group can evolve; however, it equally provides a context in which hurting individuals in other groups can be selectively advantageous. Group selection favors within-group niceness and between-group nastiness’, they were seemingly so intent on countering the selfishness-emphasising theory of Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology that they failed to recognise how their Multilevel Selection theory could be used as a way to supposedly explain the human condition. In fact, the term ‘human condition’ is only mentioned four times in Unto Others, once in reference to George Price’s personal philosophy, and three times in reference to the ancestral hunter-forager way of living, but never in reference to the theory’s potential to provide an explanation for the human conditionand this omission was not because they knew it would be dishonest to use it to explain the human condition; it was simply a failure to apply their concept to the issue. D.S. Wilson, for example, has written that ‘what he [E.O. Wilson] says about group selection deserves our attention’ (‘Richard Dawkins, Edward O. Wilson, and the Consensus of the Many’, www.thisviewoflife.com, May 2012).

E.O. Wilson was not so distracted; he could see that a Multilevel Selection theory that put forward the idea that we have both selfish instincts derived from individual-level selection and selfless instincts derived from between-group selection could present an ‘explanation’ of that most perplexing of all issues of our human condition. He saw that it could be argued that we have to live with instinctive potentials for both ‘niceness’ and ‘nastiness’ that we are forever having to consciously try to managein other words, that we suffer from the dilemma of ‘the human condition’. As was fully explained in the previous Part 4:12H-vi, D.S. Wilson and Sober’s instincts for ‘niceness’ and instincts for ‘nastiness’ explanation is a completely and utterly superficial, artificial, unaccountable, insincere and dishonest description of human nature, but once again, when the need for denial is critical any excuse will do, and what is so extremely seductiveand sinisterabout this Multilevel ‘explanation’ of the human condition is that it presents a way of ‘explaining’ the human condition without having to actually confront the human condition!!

At the end of the previous Part 4:12H-vi, it was emphasised that the Multilevel account of human nature fails to recognise, acknowledge and address the underlying consciousness-derived-and-induced psychologically upset state involved in the human condition. To briefly recap the criticisms that were made of D.S. Wilson and Sober’s Multilevel account of human nature, it was emphasised that the idea that our moral instinctive self or soul is derived from aggressively warring with other groups of humans does not equate at all with what we all know about what our born-with, instinctive moral conscience wants us to feel and behave towards all humans, which is to be loving. And it was emphasised that no human who is prepared to be truthful would accept that our species’ completely concerned-with-the-larger-whole-not-yourself, moral instinctive orientation to life is driven by an extremely selfish, competitive and divisive cause, namely to give warring groups a competitive advantage. Further, it was pointed out that to be as deeply, completely and truly loving as our moral instinctive orientation is, you have to be nurtured in an environment of lovenot, as occurs in the between-group selection model, in an environment where everyone is basically selfish, and where any selflessness that does occur is continually under siege from selfish cheaters. We are born with an instinctive expectation of being unconditionally loved which comes from a time when our species lived in a nurturing, all-loving situation, but there is no recognition of this in this Multilevel theory.

It was also stated that a complex, devious, subtle mechanism of repeatedly dispersing and then coming together in groups where somehow altruists associate with altruists and the selfish associate with the selfish, isn’t at all consistent with how our universally and always loving, unsophisticated, unsubtle, straightforward, uncomplicated, moral instinctive orientation to life operates. It was also emphasised that instead of creating just a few unconditionally selfless/loving traits, love-indoctrination has given us a complete orientation to love in the sense that while between-group selection may have enabled a rare few unconditionally selfless traits to emerge, its ability to develop unconditional selflessness en massemany, many unconditionally selfless instincts togetherindeed, to develop an entire genetic ethos of unconditional selflessness, a not-occasional-but-in-all-situations, universal, concerned-with-the-completely larger-whole-not-yourself, moral instinctive orientation to life, such as we have, has to be impossible.

Further, it was pointed out that claiming that our original instinctive state was not one of ‘universal benevolence’ but one where we have instincts for both ‘niceness’ and ‘nastiness’ was completely inconsistent with what all the great literature of the world, and all our mythologies, and all our great religious teachings, and even honest scientists, have recognised, which is that we humans did once live in a completely concerned-with-the-larger-whole-not-yourself, fully cooperative, all-loving, utterly harmonious, totally empathetic, absolutely innocent, ‘Garden of Eden’-like, ‘Golden Age’, the instinctive memory of which is our moral soul. Many quotes that resonate with this truth were included to evidence this, starting with Richard Heinberg’s observation that ‘Every religion begins with the recognition that human consciousness has been separated from the divine [Integrative Meaning orientated] Source, that a former sense of oneness…has been lost…everywhere in religion and myth there is an acknowledgment that we have departed from an original…innocence…the cause of the Fall is described variously as disobedience, as the eating of a forbidden fruit, and as spiritual amnesia [alienation].’

And, lastly, it was pointed out that D.S. Wilson and Sober’s assertion that our selfish behaviour comes from selfish instincts derived from individual-level selectionfrom sexually reproducing individuals competing with each other for food, shelter, territory and a mateis completely inconsistent with what we all know about the nature of our human condition. Again, it overlooks the fact that our human behaviour involves our unique fully conscious thinking mind. After all, the terms used to describe our behavioursuch as arrogant, deluded, optimistic, pessimistic, artificial, superficial, guilty, depressed, inspired, psychotic, alienatedall imply a consciousness-derived psychological dimension to our behaviour. We humans suffer from a consciousness-derived, psychological HUMAN CONDITION, not an instinct-controlled ANIMAL CONDITION; our condition is unique to us fully conscious humans. Yes, D.S. Wilson and Sober’s account completely failed to recognise that our selfish behaviour results from a consciousness-derived-and-induced psychosis and neurosisa psychologically and neurologically upset and insecure state in which we are selfishly having to try to prove our goodness and worth, and selfishly seek relief through material reinforcement.

Basically, the Multilevel theory failed to acknowledge, let alone account for, all the fundamental aspects that we know are involved in the human condition, which, as was pointed out, are summarised in that most voted-for-for-its-truth document in human history, the Biblethat ‘God created man in his own image’ (we did once live in that completely integrated, unconditionally selflessly behaved, cooperative, loving ideal state), and then we took the ‘fruit…from the tree of knowledge’ (became conscious), and then we ‘fell from grace’ (became corrupted, psychologically upset, selfishly preoccupied with anger, egocentricity and alienation), and, as a result, were ‘banished…from the Garden of Eden’ state of our original innocence (became insecure/guilt-ridden about our fundamental goodness and worth) and became ‘a restless wanderer on the earth’ (became psychoticour instinctive self or soul became repressed because it condemned our intellect; and neuroticour conscious mind became distressed because it couldn’t explain itself) until we could find the reconciling, healing understanding of the ‘good and evil’ in our make-up and, by so doing, become ‘like God, knowing [understanding of our] good and evil [afflicted lives]. Yes, any truthful account of the human condition would acknowledge and explain that we humans did once live in an innocent Garden-of-Eden-like state, and that we then became conscious, and then became psychologically upset and corrupted, at which point we had to find the reconciling understanding of why we had become psychologically upset and corrupted. And it should be added that finding that true reconciling understanding of our human condition leads to both our liberation from the human condition and, unavoidably at the same time, confronting exposure of the extent of our corrupted condition; it couldn’t be any other waythe truth about the human condition necessarily exposes the extent of our own corrupted condition. Again, this arrival of understanding of the human condition that leads to the liberation from, and also the exposure of, that condition is acknowledged in all the great religious texts. For example, the Bible refers to a time when ‘Another book [will be]…opened which is the book of life [the human-condition-explaining and thus humanity-liberating book][and] a new heaven and a new earth [will appear] for the first heaven and the first earth [will have]…passed away…[and the dignifying full truth about our condition] will wipe every tear from…[our] eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away’ (Rev. 20:12, 21:1,4). Buddhist scripture contains exactly the same anticipation of this fabulous time when humans ‘will with a perfect voice preach the true Dharma [present the supreme wisdom, namely reconciling, healing understanding of the human condition], which is auspicious and removes all ill’, saying, ‘Human beings are then without any blemishes, moral offences are unknown among them, and they are full of zest and joy. Their bodies are very large and their skin has a fine hue. Their strength is quite extraordinary’ (Maitreyavyakarana, tr. Edward Conze, Buddhist Scriptures, 1959, pp.238-242). Yes, the end result of the arrival of understanding of the human condition is the emergence of a human race that is free of the human condition, but obviously there has to be a period of transition when we each have to face the aforementioned exposure of the extent of our own corrupted condition, and this great honesty day, truth day, exposure day, come-clean dayin fact, judgment dayis recognised in the Bible as the ‘day of judgment’ (Matt. 10:15, 11:22, 24, 12:36; Mark 6:11; 2 Pet. 2:9, 3:7; 1 John 4:17) and ‘the day when God will judge men’s secrets’ (Rom. 2:16). It is also described by the prophet Isaiah, who said that the liberation that ‘gives you relief from suffering and turmoil and cruel bondage…will come with vengeance; with divine retribution…to save you. Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped…Your nakedness will be exposed’ (14:3; 35:4, 5; 47:3). The prophet Muhammad also referred to ‘the Day of Reckoning’ (The Koran, ch.56) and ‘the Last Judgement’ (ibid. ch.69), providing this similar description of it: ‘when the Trumpet is blown with a single blast and the earth and the mountains are lifted up and crushed with a single blow, Then, on that day, the Terror shall come to pass, and heaven shall be split…On that day you shall be exposed, not one secret of yours concealed’ (ibid. ch.69).

Of course, it is not only in religious texts that we find accounts of the true story of humans’ journey from innocence to the emergence of consciousness and, with it, the corruption of our original innocent instinctive state, to the eventual finding of the reconciling, ameliorating human-race-transforming, soundness-resurrecting understanding of the human condition. The following description from more recent times, which was referred to in Part 4:7, comes from the Russian philosopher Nikolai Berdyaev’s 1931 book, The Destiny of Man, from a chapter actually titled ‘The Origin of Good and Evil’: ‘The memory of a lost paradise, of a Golden Age, is very deep in man, together with a sense of guilt and sin and a dream of regaining the Kingdom of Heaven which sometimes assumes the form of a Utopia or an earthly paradise…We are faced with a profound enigma: how could man have renounced paradise which he recalls so longingly in our world-aeon? How could he have fallen away from it?…The exile of man from paradise means that man fell away from God…Not everything was revealed to man in paradise, and ignorance was the condition of the life in it. It was the realm of the unconscious…Man rejected the bliss and wholeness of Eden and chose the pain and tragedy of cosmic life in order to explore his destiny to its inmost depths. This was the birth of consciousness with its painful dividedness. In falling away from the harmony of paradise and from unity with God, man began to make distinctions and valuations, tasted the fruit of the tree of knowledge and found himself on this side of good and evil’ (tr. N. Duddington, 1960, p.36 & 38 of 310). Further on, he wrote that ‘man is an irrational, paradoxical, essentially tragic being…Philosophers and scientists have done very little to elucidate the problem of man’ (p.49), and, ‘psychologists were wrong in assuming that man was a healthy creature, mainly conscious and intellectual, and should be studied from that point of view. Man is a sick being…the distinction between the conscious and the subconscious mind is fundamental for the new psychology’ (pp.67-68). Earlier in The Destiny of Man, Berdyaev also described very clearly why ‘Philosophers and scientists have done very little to elucidate the problem of man’ and, by so doing, bring about ‘the new psychology’the reason, of course, being humans’ great ‘fear’, in fact, ‘primeval terror’, of confronting the truth of our psychologically ‘sick’ condition; as he wrote, ‘Knowledge requires great daring. It means victory over ancient, primeval terror. Fear makes the search for truth and the knowledge of it impossible. Knowledge implies fearlessness…it must also be said of knowledge that it is bitter…Particularly bitter is moral knowledge, the knowledge of good and evil [which is the issue of the human condition]. But the bitterness is due to the fallen state of the world…it must be said that the very distinction between good and evil is a bitter distinction, the bitterest thing in the world…There is a deadly pain in the very distinction of good and evil, of the valuable and the worthless. We cannot rest in the thought that that distinction is ultimate. The longing for God in the human heart springs from the fact that we cannot bear to be faced for ever with the distinction between good and evil (pp.14-15). Yes, to not be ‘faced for ever with the distinction between good and evil’ we HAD TO face the ‘deadly pain in the very distinction of good and evil’BUT while the great flaw in the Multilevel account of our human condition is that it doesn’t deal with this real, ‘painful’, ‘ancient, primeval terror’ of the psychological issue of our human condition, E.O. Wilson was astute enough to see that that flaw was precisely its greatest asset, for it offered a way to supposedly explain the human condition without having to acknowledge and engage the agonising, real, true, alienated, core, ‘deadly pain’ of the psychological condition within ourselves! The truth is, the Multilevel account of the human condition is a completely fake, deliberately trivialising account of the human condition. And in advocating such a dishonest account, its proponents were effectively condemning humanity to be ‘faced for ever with the distinction between good and evil’because, as Berdyaev said, such ‘fear’ of the real human condition ‘makes the search for truth and the knowledge of it impossible’. Only the ‘fearless’ ‘search for truth’ could deliver the actual, human-race-liberating explanation of the human condition, which has now been carried out with this, the fully accountable, ameliorating ‘truth and the knowledge’ about our condition, the product.

Yes, the Multilevel theory provided a ‘get out of jail free’ card for humans, a way to avoid having to confront the issue of the immense psychosis and neurosis of our real human condition while arguing that the human condition had been addressed and explained‘What guilt? What insecurity of self? What psychosis and neurosis? What ‘sickness of the soul’ that we are supposed to experience? What ‘deadly distinction between good and evil’? What ‘inner depression from our fallen condition’? What ‘deeply troubled state’? What ‘alienation’? What ‘deadly pain in the very distinction of good and evil, of the valuable and the worthless’? What ‘fallen state of the world’? What [p]articularly bitter’ ‘moral knowledge’? What ‘primal terror’ that, in order to understand and ameliorate, requires a ‘new psychology’? What ‘redemption’ is it that I need? What ‘horror and agony of the human condition’? What ‘Resignation’ that I’m supposed to have gone through? What ‘Golden Age, soulful innocent past’? What great truth of a Godly Integrative Meaning to existence? What great hunger for a human-condition-healed world? What great dream of the arrival of ‘peace on Earth as it is in heaven’? What great psychological scourge of the human race that philosophers have written about? What great day of self-confrontation is coming? What ‘day of judgment’? What ‘day’ when ‘not one secret’ of mine will be ‘concealed’, which religious teachings have predicted? What ‘auspicious’ reconciling understanding that ‘removes all ill’? I don’t know what the hell you are talking aboutthe human condition is nothing more than the manifestation of selfish instincts that are virtually universal in nature and some additional selfless instincts that we acquired as a result of groups of humans fighting against other groups of humans; so fuck off with all your psychological crap, I have no idea what you are talking about. On a good day I might try to be nice to people just so they will like me, but on most days I honestly couldn’t give a flying fuck about anyone else!’ (Yes, this is where humanity is at! Please God [the truth of the existence of universal love and meaning], help me to stop all this madness, this horrific sickness of denial that is destroying humanity.)

But given how horrifically agonising the issue of the human condition actually is, this way of pretending to address the issue of the human condition without actually addressing it was an extremely seductive concept for overly upset humans. Sure it meant burying humanity deeper into the cave of denial, and by so doing leading it to the brink of terminal alienation and the extinction of the human race, but as I said earlier, humans have become so upset, embattled and embittered by the human condition that many no longer care about the future of the human race, they only care about finding some way to relieve themselves of their human condition. So rather than being the solution to all our problems, this Multilevel fake explanation of the human condition is the ultimate expression of the end play, end game situation that the human race is now in. Either this great lie, the most seductive and thus sinister lie to have ever been invented, is resisted and exposed, or humanity dies! That is how dangerous this Multilevel account of the human condition is. And, again, it’s made so much more seductive and thus sinister by appearing to satisfy both the left-wing and right-wing campsfor while it acknowledges that we have unconditionally selfless moral instincts, it also supposedly explains and, in effect, justifies our selfish behaviour as a natural part of our make-up. In fact, since selfishness still supposedly has a powerful presence in our instinctive make-up, it could be viewed as more of a selfishness-justifying, right-wing-supporting theory than an idealistic selflessness-emphasising, left-wing-supporting theory, which must have been somewhat of a shock to D.S. Wilson and Sober whose whole intention in putting forward the Multilevel theory was, as they said, ‘as an antidote to the rampant individualism’.

The great fake explanation of the human condition had arrived! That greatest mystery of all of the human condition has supposedly finally been solved! Explanation of the ‘good’ and ‘evil’ aspects of the human condition has supposedly been found! Our great quest for self-knowledge is supposedly finally over! The breakthrough of breakthroughs in the human journey has supposedly finally occurred and we can now understand ourselves! What a terrible, unconscionable lie, but what a relief for denial-committed, ‘avoid-the-human-condition-by-any-means-you-can-and-don’t-worry-about-the-future-of-the-human-race’ humans!

E.O. Wilson could see all this potential and, being the psychologically embattled enemy of truth that he is (he actually epitomises the time predicted by Christ in the Bible when ‘the love of most will grow cold’ (Matt. 24:12), which I talk about in Part 3:11H) he grasped it with both hands, even commandeering the idea as largely his own discovery, even re-branding it the ‘New Theory of Eusociality’. In fact, D.S. Wilson, the recognised developer of Multilevel Selection theory, isn’t even mentioned in E.O. Wilson’s 2012 book The Social Conquest of Earth (to be introduced shortly) that launched his ‘new theory’ on the worldapart from in the References at the back of the book where he writes that ‘Sequenced multilevel theory owes its origins to many sources, but the main thrust of its development occurred through the following articles, in which the present author played a role’, citing a 2007 paper and a 2008 paper that E.O. Wilson managed to co-author with D.S. Wilson, ten years after D.S. Wilson and Sober’s Unto Others was publisheda book that E.O. Wilson doesn’t even mention in The Social Conquest of Earth! This is all a re-run of what occurred with kin selection where E.O. Wilson attached himself to William Hamilton and then virtually usurped the concept as his own, re-branding it as ‘Sociobiology’. At 83 years of age at the time of the publication of The Social Conquest of Earth in 2012, E.O. Wilson has had plenty of time to hone his techniques.

To context E.O. Wilson’s complete change of allegiance from being the main architect and promoter of the kin-selection-based, selfishness-emphasising, Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology theory, to completely disowning kin selection and instead advocating the multilevel ‘New Theory of Eusociality’, what E.O. Wilson had realised from all the hateful resistance to Evolutionary Psychology’s dismissal of our moral instincts as nothing more than a subtle form of selfishness was that that excuse for our divisive condition had run its courseit had become too abhorrent and patently dishonest to continue to be used. And so a new excuse had to be found, and the absolute miracle from E.O. Wilson’s perspective is that the Multilevel, between-group-selection-emphasising theory not only justified right-wing selfishness, it could also satisfy the selflessness-emphasising left-wing that wanted to admit we have unconditionally selfless moral instincts. As pointed out in a 2011 article reporting on this New Theory of Eusociality alternative explanation to kin selection’s dismissal of our moral instincts as nothing more than a subtle form of selfishness, ‘Those who bristle at the notion that all altruistic behavior can be recast, via kin selection, as being indirectly self-interestedthose who would like to think there’s room in nature for a more genuine form of altruismmay find it appealing’ (Leon Neyfakh, ‘Where does good come from?’, Boston Globe, 17 Apr. 2011). E.O. Wilson could see that both the right and the left could supposedly be satisfied by this Multilevel theoryindeed, he could see that they could now join forces in preventing the issue of the human condition from ever being truthfully confronted, acknowledged, understood, reconciled and healed!

Many Sociobiologists/Evolutionary Psychologists were caught on the hop by their leading advocate’s shift from supporting their kin-selection-based theory to supporting the new Multilevel Selection theory, but if E.O. Wilson could talk to them truthfully about his change of position, he would argue: ‘Can’t you see what I’m doing? We have to admit altruism existsthe subtle form of selfishness dismissal of our moral instincts is a spent tactic, everyone is sick of it, so what I have done is find an even trickier way for humans to evade the agony of the human condition, one that doesn’t deny that we have genuinely altruistic moral instincts but still excuses our selfish behaviourand not only that, what is even more wonderful is that it provides an explanation of the human condition that doesn’t require that we have to actually confront the psychosis of our human condition.’

And people have begun to ‘get it’, to catch on, as E.O. Wilson acknowledged in 2012 when writing about the reception he received after he and the mathematicians Martin Nowak and Corina Tarnita introduced the Eusociality explanation in a 2010 paper titled ‘The evolution of eusociality’ that was published in Nature magazine (Vol.466, 26 Aug. 2010): ‘A strong reaction from supporters of kin selection not surprisingly ensued, and soon afterward more than 130 of them [in a letter published in Nature magazine, Vol.471, 24 Mar. 2011] famously signed on to protest our replacement of kin selection by multilevel selection, and most emphatically the key role given to group selection…Since that protest, the number of supporters of the multilevel selection approach has grown, to the extent that a similarly long list of signatories could be obtained’ (‘Evolution and Our Inner Conflict’, The New York Times, Opinionator, 24 Jun. 2012). In the article, E.O. Wilson justified this growing support by saying that ‘at no time have our mathematical and empirical arguments been refuted or even seriously challenged’, but, as I say, he can’t talk truthfully about the real reason people would want to adopt an evasive Multilevel theory.

So, E.O. Wilson abandoned Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology and became the ringleader for Multilevel Selection theory as a way to explain (but, in truth, avoid) the human condition. Naming it the ‘New Theory of Eusociality’ (The Social Conquest of Earth, 2012, p.183 of 331), E.O. Wilson presented his account of it to the general public in 2012 in his book The Social Conquest of Earth, in which he explained that ‘eusociality’ (which is derived from the Greek eu meaning ‘good/real’, and the word ‘social’) is ‘the condition of multiple generations organized into groups by means of an altruistic division of labor’ (p.133). Yes, the fully integrated state is the ‘good/real social’ state, but E.O. Wilson’s Eusociality explanation of its origins is completely unreal.

 

The book’s promotionE.O. Wilson pitches himself as ‘Darwin’s heir’!!

As has been explained, E.O. Wilson’s The Social Conquest of Earth is the biggest, most dangerous con job the world has ever seen. It represents the height of sophistication in the art of denial, and the scam begins with the book’s presentation. Unlike the voluminous tome of his earlier, supposedly human-race-explaining book Sociobiology: The New Synthesis, which he now completely disowns, ‘E.O. Wilson’s Theory of Everything’ (The Atlantic mag. Nov. 2011) is usefully hand-sizedlike a Bible is designed to be! With its short, digestible chapters and uncomplicated illustrations it is clear that a lot of thought has gone into its production. But just how outrageous this book is (‘outrageous’ because of how patently dishonest E.O. Wilson’s ‘Theory of Everything’ is) can be gauged from the promotional blurb attached to it. The book’s dust jacket cites a commendation that effectively serves as a subtitle to the book (the underlinings are my emphasis)‘A monumental exploration of the biological origins of the human condition.’ The promotional blurb on the leaves of the jacket continues in the same fashion: ‘From the most celebrated living heir to Darwin comes this groundbreaking book on evolution, the summa work of Edward O. Wilson’s legendary career…In refashioning the story of human evolution, he…present[s] us with the clearest explanation ever produced as to the origins of the human condition. In doing so, Wilson also brilliantly reveals how “group selection” can be the only model for explaining man’s origins and domination…[The book] is the single most important new history of animal and human evolution in a generation…Wilson is regarded as one of the world’s preeminent biologists. Further commendations on the back of the jacket refer to Wilson’s ‘urgent reflections on the human condition. At the core of The Social Conquest of Earth is the unresolved, unresolvable tension in our species between selfishness and altruism, while others state that ‘Once again, Edward O. Wilson has written a book combining the qualities that have brought his previous books Pulitzer Prizes and millions of readers: a big but simple question, powerful explanations, magisterial knowledge, and [this book] could transform our understanding of human nature…advancing human self-understanding. (Note that even though Sociobiology and its progeny Evolutionary Psychology were said to explain the human conditionfor example, in Consilience E.O. Wilson wrote that ‘The strongest appeal of consilience is…the value of understanding the human condition with a higher degree of certainty’ (1998, p.7)Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology were never strongly promoted as providing explanation of the human condition. However, with the theory of Eusociality, Wilson’s claim that it has solved the human condition is front and centre in its publicitythe inference being that what he is presenting now is the definitive explanation of the human condition.)

E.O. Wilson certainly has been ‘celebrated’ and is considered a ‘legendary’ ‘preeminent biologist’. To mention just a few of his accolades, he has been awarded two Pulitzer Prizes, the U.S. National Medal of Science and in 1995 was named one of TIME magazine’s 25 Most Influential People in America. He has as many medals, ribbons and gongs on his chest as an African dictator, and the truth is they are about as justified and meaningful. He is the complete fake, the very opposite of the ‘heir to Darwin’. Whereas Darwin was an honest thinker, a contributor of light to the world, E.O. Wilson is the prince of darkness, the archetypal baddie with the black hat, the Lord of Lyingand what we have in this, his latest book, The Social Conquest of Earth, is the devil’s Bible. While Christ and his words represent the very essence of truth (as evidenced by my constant reference to his words to illustrate the truthful biological explanation of the human condition), E.O. Wilson and his words represent the very opposite of truth. Yes, E.O. Wilson is the quintessential anti-Christ. That is the reality: E.O. Wilson’s ‘summa work’ represents the grand finale in the two million year long story of the development of denial on Earthit is the final great push to have the world of lies with all its sickness, darkness and ugliness swamp the world. If I’m being harsh it is because I need to be: this lying has to be stopped. Make no mistake, E.O. Wilson is trying to kill the human race, prevent it from ever reaching liberating understanding. The long anticipated last great battle on Earth, the fabled battle of Armageddon, is actually the battle between the entrenched dark world of denial and the emerging new enlightened, true world of denial-free understandingwhich basically boils down to a battle between E.O. Wilson’s fake, superficial, not-genuinely-biological, human-condition-trivialising account of the human condition, and the true, human-condition-confronting-and-penetrating biological explanation of the human condition being presented here in Freedom: Expanded Book 1. Choose your side.

So, The Social Conquest of Earth alleges that it is going to explain ‘the biological origins of the human condition’, and that this will have the effect of ‘advancing human self-understanding’. As has been explained, it does absolutely nothing of the sort. It is the great fake explanation of the human condition that doesn’t advance our understanding of ourselves, not one iotalet alone bring about the long anticipated and needed reconciling, ameliorating, healing of our human condition. As the just mentioned publicity attached to the book claims, E.O. Wilson’s version of the human condition sees the condition as ‘unresolvable’, we simply have to live with and try to consciously manage the ‘unresolvable tension in our species between selfishness and altruism’. Again, the true description of our consciousness-induced-and-derived psychological human-condition-afflicted journey is that we were ‘created…in the image of God’ (we once lived in that completely integrated, unconditionally selflessly behaved state), then we took the ‘fruit…from the tree of knowledge’ (became conscious), then we ‘fell from grace’ (became corrupted, psychologically upset), and, as a result, were ‘banished…from the Garden of Eden’ state of our original innocence (became insecure/ guilt-ridden) and became ‘a restless wanderer on the earth’ (became psychotic and neurotic) until we could find the reconciling, healing understanding of the ‘good and evil’ in our make-up and by so doing become ‘like God, knowing [understanding of our] good and evil [afflicted lives], at which point ‘Another book [would be]…opened which is the book of life [the human-condition-explaining and humanity-liberating book][and] a new heaven and a new earth [will appear] for the first heaven and the first earth [will have]…passed away…[and the reconciling and healing full truth about our condition] will wipe every tear from…[our] eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away’, but during the transition stage to this time of ‘relief from suffering and turmoil and cruel bondage’ we will unavoidably go through a period when ‘the eyes of the blind [will] be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped’ and our ‘nakedness will be exposed’ and not one secret of’ ours will be ‘concealed’. So, far, far, far from our human condition being ‘unresolvable’, it is resolvable, and resolving it, healing it, ameliorating it was the fundamental expectation of what would happen when we found understanding of the human condition. So E.O. Wilson’s account of the human condition, which states that we just have to live with instincts for ‘niceness’ and ‘nastiness’ in perpetuity, is completely inconsistent with all our expectations of what happens when we truly solve the human condition. (All the anticipations of the arrival of a truly reconciling, completely human-race-transforming understanding documented in Part 3:12 provide overwhelming evidence of this expectation.)

Ironically, E.O. Wilson’s The Social Conquest of Earth does actually begin with an accurate statement about the importance of solving the human condition: ‘There is no grail more elusive or precious in the life of the mind than the key to understanding the human condition’ (p.1)a statement that echoes another of his earlier references to this critical search: ‘The human condition is the most important frontier of the natural sciences’ (Consilience, 1998, p.298 of 374). So he is fully aware of how critically important solving the human condition is to the human race, which means he must also be fully aware of how deeply criminal it is to be presenting such a completely false explanation for it. But unlike Charles Darwin, who had sufficient integrity not to pursue or develop ideas that weren’t consistent with what we all do know about the true psychological nature of our human condition, E.O. Wilson obviously has no such scruplesquite the opposite in fact, for at every stage in the thought journey about the human condition that his mind has gone on he has been fully committed to finding a way to avoid the true psychological nature of our condition. And not only is it the very opposite of being ‘the only model for explaining man’s origins and domination’, E.O. Wilson’s model is also patently dishonest, whereas the other model being presented here in Freedom: Expanded Book 1 is patently honest and fully accountable of all that we know about the real ‘tension in our species between selfishness and altruism’.

In a further demonstration of his duplicity, E.O. Wilson is even prepared to begin his book with a fake display of empathy with the depth of our species’ troubled psychotic state, writing that ‘Humanity today is like a waking dreamer, caught between the fantasies of sleep and the chaos of the real world. The mind seeks but cannot find the precise place and hour. We have created a Star Wars civilization, with Stone Age emotions, medieval institutions, and god-like technology. We thrash about. We are terribly confused by the mere fact of our existence, and a danger to ourselves and to the rest of life(p.7). Yes, as R.D. Laing truthfully wrote, ‘The condition of alienation, of being asleep, of being unconscious, of being out of one’s mind, is the condition of the normal man [p.24 of 156] …between us and It [our true self or soul] there is a veil which is more like fifty feet of solid concrete. Deus absconditus. Or we have absconded [p.118] …The outer divorced from any illumination from the inner is in a state of darkness. We are in an age of darkness. The state of outer darkness is a state of sini.e. alienation or estrangement from the inner light [p.116] …We are all murderers and prostitutesno matter to what culture, society, class, nation one belongs…We are bemused and crazed creatures, strangers to our true selves, to one another, and to the spiritual and material world [pp.11-12](The Politics of Experience and The Bird of Paradise, 1967). ‘We are dead, but think we are alive. We are asleep, but think we are awake. We are dreaming, but take our dreams to be reality. We are the halt, lame, blind, deaf, the sick. But we are doubly unconscious. We are so ill that we no longer feel ill, as in many terminal illnesses. We are mad, but have no insight [into the fact of our madness](Self and Others, 1961, p.38 of 192). Of course, the great difference between what E.O. Wilson wrote and what Laing wrote is that the latter explicitly stated that in order to solve our sleeping, thrashing about, confused, lost, estranged state we have to reflect upon that immensely alienated condition, not go all out to avoid such reflection as E.O. Wilson has done throughout his career; again, as R.D. Laing said, ‘Our alienation goes to the roots. The realization of this is the essential springboard for any serious reflection on any aspect of present inter-human life (The Politics of Experience and The Bird of Paradise, p.12); or as Berdyaev said, in order to achieve ‘victory over ancient, primeval terror’ of ‘the fallen state of the world’ and by so doing not be ‘faced for ever with the distinction between good and evil’ we HAD TO face the ‘deadly pain in the very distinction of good and evil’, which is the truth of our immensely alienated condition.

 

The question is, how did E.O. Wilson go about explaining the human condition while denying the essential psychosis involved in that condition; how did he construct his great lie?

E.O. Wilson’s first step in formulating this latest greatest lie was to somehow dismiss the recognitions given by all the great religious teachers, such as Abraham, Moses, Christ, Muhammad and Buddha, and all the great philosophers, such as Plato, of the essential characteristics of our psychologically upset, fallen, integrative/Godly-ideal-state-corrupted, alienated condition. The outrageously dishonest and astonishingly brazen way he did so was by claiming ‘the mythic foundations of religion’, such as the idea of ‘a divine, all-powerful’ God, and the ‘creation stories’, were nothing more than adaptive devices to ensure groups stayed together, ‘a Darwinian device for survival’; and, in the case of philosophers, by asserting that ‘consciousness’ ‘was not designed for self-examination’ and that the thoughts of philosophers amounted to nothing more than ‘failed models of the mind’! In The Social Conquest of Earth, E.O. Wilson wrote: ‘Religion will never solve this great riddle [of the human condition]…In the desert-dwelling patriarchies of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, prophets conceived, not surprisingly, a divine, all-powerful patriarch who speaks to his people through sacred scripture. The creation stories gave the members of each tribe an explanation for their existence. It made them feel loved and protected…The creation myth is a Darwinian device for survival. Tribal conflict, where believers on the inside were pitted against infidels on the outside, was a principal driving force that shaped biological human nature…Can these two worldviews [of religion and science] ever be reconciled? The answer, to put the matter honestly and simply, is no. They cannot be reconciled…If the great riddle of the human condition cannot be solved by recourse to the mythic foundations of religion, neither will it be solved by introspection [pp.7-8] …Consciousness…was not designed for self-examination. It was designed for survival and reproduction…Moreover, we look in vain to philosophy for the answer to the great riddle…Most of the history of philosophy consists of failed models of the mind…the solution of the riddle has been left to science…I will propose that scientific advances…are now sufficient for us to address…the identity of the driving forces that brought it [advanced social life] into existence [pp.9-10].’ So, as for the prospect of the great insights and truths enshrined in religion ever being reconciled with scientific understandings, E.O. Wilson simply asserts that it is not possiblethat ‘They cannot be reconciled.’ In May 2006, National Geographic magazine featured an interview with E.O. Wilson in which he said that he had ‘another book in progress…called The Creation [published in 2006], and its subtitle is A Meeting of Science and Religion [in which] I take a very strong stance against the mingling of religion and science.’ Yes, many scientists like E.O. Wilson and Richard Dawkins have coped with the great truths contained in religion of Integrative Meaning represented by the concept of ‘God’, of the existence of our ‘Garden of Eden’ innocent soulful past, and of our corrupted ‘fallen’, human-condition-afflicted, ‘sinful’ present state, by simply maintaining that religion and science are completely unrelated. Contrast this view with the common sense exhibited by the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Charles H. Townes when he said, ‘they [religion and science] both represent man’s efforts to understand his universe and must ultimately be dealing with the same substance. As we understand more in each realm, the two must grow together…converge they must’ (‘The Convergence of Science and Religion’, Zygon, Vol.1 No.3, 1966).

We have already established how much E.O. Wilson loathes religion and in The Social Conquest of Earth his determination to undermine the substance and value of religions continues apace with his assertion that they have no contribution to make to ‘the search for truth’! He writes that ‘conflict among religions is often…an accelerant, if not a direct cause, of war. Devout believers value their faith above all else and are quick to anger if it is challenged. The power of organized religions is based upon their contribution to social order and personal security, not to the search for truth. The goal of religions is submission to the will and common good of the tribe. The illogic of religions is not a weakness in them, but their essential strength. Acceptance of the bizarre creation myths binds the members together… Such an intensely tribal instinct could, in the real world, arise in evolution only by group selection, tribe competing against tribe’ (p.259). The immensely sound and logicalnot ‘illogic[al] or ‘bizarre’truths elevated by the great religious teachers (such as the great truths mentioned above and many others such as that ‘God is love’, which we can now understand as meaning that the theme of the integrative process is unconditional selflessness) are the core reason their teachings have attracted the support of billions of humans throughout history. Similarly, the reason why philosophers like Plato have been regarded with awe through the ages is precisely because of how much truth they were able to contribute to humanity’s search for knowledge. This comment captures the true significance of two of the great religious and philosophical texts: ‘It has been said that after the Bible, Plato’s dialogues are the most influential books in Western culture’ (from the front flap of Plato’s Symposium and Phaedrus, published by Everyman’s Library in 2001). Earlier, I stated that Moses, Plato and Christ made the most important contributions to humanity’s great journey to enlightenment: that Moses’ Ten Commandments gave humanity the most effective form of Imposed Discipline for containing the ever increasing levels of psychological upset in the human race; that Christ gave humanity the soundest and thus most effective corruption-and-denial-countering Religion; and that Plato gave philosophy (the actual business of studying ‘the truths underlying all reality’ (Macquarie Dict. 3rd edn, 1998), in particular studying and finding the all-important understanding of the human condition) the best possible orientation and assistance. But instead of honouring their immensely important contribution to humanity’s great journey to enlightenment, E.O. Wilson dismisses their work as selfish, self-preservation-derived, essentially meaningless rubbish!!

Claiming ‘consciousness’ is not capable of ‘self-examination’ is basically a projection of E.O. Wilson’s own great fear and inability to look into or examine himselfin fact, to look into the human condition per seand yet he claims to have explained what he is incapable of looking into! One way to disarm an opponent is to articulate their position so clearly that you give the impression that you couldn’t and wouldn’t be able to do so unless you had an effective counter to their position. In The Social Conquest of Earth, E.O. Wilson is disarmingly honest about the true nature of the human condition, writing that human nature’s ‘true identity has remained elusive. There may be an emotional, very human reason for this persistent ambiguity. If raw, untransformed human nature were to be revealed…what would it be? What would it look like? Would we love it? A better question may be: Do we really want to know? Perhaps most people, including many scholars, would like to keep human nature at least partly in the dark. It is the monster in the fever swamp of public discourse’ (p.191). Yes, the human condition is ‘the monster in the fever swamp of public discourse’, the great unconfrontable and unmentionable ‘elephant in the living rooms’ of the lives of humans, but, immediately after writing so truthfully and eloquently about the deep, dark, unbearable real psychological issue of the human condition, E.O. Wilson reverted to his default positiona completely superficial, trivialised, non-psychological, non-‘monster in the fever swamp of public discourse’-confronting account of it. Claiming that science can now give us ‘a clear definition of human nature’ (p.192), he put forward his outrageously superficial, non-penetrating multilevel ‘gene-culture coevolution’ (p.195) explanation of human nature. Clearly it is not the ‘consciousness’ of all humans that is incapable of ‘self-examination’, but E.O. Wilson’s conscious mind.

Indeed, what E.O. Wilson has done with his fake, trivialised, extraordinarily superficial ‘explanation’ of the human condition is diminish what the human condition actually is. He has made it seem like it’s nothing special at all, merely the existence of two different instincts within us that are sometimes at odds. But if we read what has been written about the extreme agony that children endure through their interactions with the silent, adult world or, more specifically, what adolescents go through during Resignation we are swiftly reconnected with the true horror and fear of the real human conditionbut E.O. Wilson’s version of the human condition contains no such horror, which of course is its great appeal, but the risk is that from the time of the publication of The Social Conquest of Earth onwards the human condition may never be talked about truthfully again. When adolescents going through Resignation are given E.O. Wilson’s account of the human condition they are going to find it laughable it’s so patently dishonest in its superficiality. The subject of the human condition used to be an almost sacred subject, one that was only referred to in moments of deep profundity, but now it can be talked about as if it’s nothing extraordinary at all. What E.O. Wilson has done is not explain the human condition but nullify it, render it benign, virtually inconsequential. When the core issue about what it is to be human is finally completely trivialised, as it now is, we have the ultimate example of how denial is taking humanity to the very brink of terminal dishonesty/ alienation/ superficiality/ darkness/ death.

 

To support his human-psychosis-avoiding, fake account of the human condition, E.O. Wilson had to find a way to argue that the fundamentally weak mechanism of between-group selection could develop our unconditionally selfless moral instincts.

In order to support the between-group selection argument for the origin of unconditionally selfless instincts, E.O. Wilson most heavily relied on the superficially persuasive logic that within groups the selfish are more likely to succeed but that in competition between groups, it’s the groups of altruists that are most likely to succeed. For example, the 2007 paper that he co-authored with D.S. Wilson concluded with this ‘summary’ of the ‘new’ between-group selection theory: ‘Selfishness beats altruism within groups. Altruistic groups beat selfish groups. Everything else is commentary’ (‘Rethinking the Theoretical Foundation of Sociobiology’, The Quarterly Review of Biology, Vol.82, No.4, Dec. 2007). Similarly, in The Social Conquest of Earth E.O. Wilson stated that ‘an iron rule exists in genetic social evolution. It is that selfish individuals beat altruistic individuals, while groups of altruists beat groups of selfish individuals’ (p.243). While anyone unfamiliar with biology will likely find this logic very persuasive in explaining how altruism might be selected for, for a biologist it simply doesn’t hold water because, as they know, selfishness is such a dominant force in natural selection that even a winning group of altruists will, in all likelihood, become subverted by selfish opportunists. Certainly, it is perfectly obviousso obvious that ‘Everything else is commentary’, that it is ‘an iron rule’that a group with members who are selflessly considerate and supportive of each other will be more successful in competition with groups that aren’t, but that is not the issue at hand, the issue here is can such selflessness become established in a group? Is between-group selection a strong enough force to overcome genetic selfishness?

On that key issue, it was explained in Part 4:12B that while it is certainly true that selfless cooperation is the best way to develop and maintain integrative orderit is why ant and bee colonies work so extremely wellthe biological reality is that under the limitations imposed by the fact that genetic traits have to reproduce if they are to carry on, selfless cooperation is normally (that is, outside of the love-indoctrination process) impossible to develop while each member of a species retains its ability to sexually reproduce. Evidence of this ‘agony of the animal condition’ is the universality of dominance hierarchy in social species, where the more members of the species become integrated, the more intense becomes the selfish competition for food, shelter, territory and a mateuntil only the establishment of dominance hierarchy, a ‘pecking order’, can bring some peace between the competing individuals. Yes, if that most effective form of cooperation, unconditional selflessness, could have been developed among sexually reproducing individuals we can expect that it would have appeared many times over in the history of life on Earth, but it hasn’texcept in our human situation, and to a degree in bonobos, through love-indoctrination. As Jerry Coyne stated about the between-group selection argument, ‘altruism would be unlikely to override the tendency of each group to quickly lose its altruists through natural selection favoring cheaters’.

As explained in Part 4:12B, ants and bees and the few other completely social colonial species have achieved full integration by elaborating the reproductive individual, but large animals such as humans couldn’t employ this device because it meant too great a loss of genetic variability. Each human has had to remain sexual.

So, as superficially persuasive as the ‘iron rule’ is that groups of altruists will defeat groups of selfish individuals and that, as a result, genes for altruism will be handed down to future generations, the key biological question is can between-group selection be strong enough to overcome ‘the tendency of each group to quickly lose its altruists through natural selection favoring cheaters’? In The Social Conquest of Earth E.O. Wilson did raise this key biological question that has to be answered about between-group selection, but only briefly and very superficiallyand, dismissively, not until a third of the way into the book. On page 72 he wrote: ‘The key question remaining in the dynamics of human genetic evolution is whether natural selection at the group level has been strong enough to overcome the powerful force of natural selection at the level of the individual. Put another way, have the forces favoring instinctive altruistic behavior to other members of the group been strong enough to disfavor individual selfish behavior? Mathematical models constructed in the 1970s showed that group selection can prevail if the relative rate of group extinction or diminishment in groups without altruistic genes is very high. As one class of such models suggests, when the rate of increase of group multiplication with altruistic members exceeds the rate of increase of selfish individuals within the groups, gene-based altruism can spread through the population of groups. More recently, in 2009, the theoretical biologist Samuel Bowles has produced a more realistic model that fits the empirical data well. His approach answers the following question: if cooperative groups were more likely to prevail in conflicts with other groups, has the level of intergroup violence been sufficient to influence the evolution of human social behavior? The estimates of adult mortality in hunter-gatherer groups from the beginning of Neolithic times to the present, shown in the accompanying table, support that proposition.’

But as seductive as the obvious ‘iron rule’ argument is that an altruistic group will beat a selfish group, the fact is it actually holds no weight. What is needed to support the between-group selection argument is an explanation of how between-group selection can be strong enough to overcome the powerful forces of genetic selfishness, and on this key issue all that is provided in The Social Conquest of Earth is this one brief and unconvincing paragraph of explanation. While it is not one of the ‘Mathematical models constructed in the 1970s’, and while he doesn’t acknowledge it as D.S. Wilson’s mathematical model (presumably, as suggested earlier, because he doesn’t want to credit D.S. Wilson as the developer of Multilevel Selection theory), the mathematical model referred to where, ‘when the rate of increase of group multiplication with altruistic members exceeds the rate of increase of selfish individuals within the groups, gene-based altruism can spread through the population of groups’ does describe D.S. Wilson’s mathematical model that was presented in Part 4:12H. That was the model where for between-group selection to work, ‘the progeny of both groups disperse and then physically come together before forming new groups of their own’, and where, if this can occur, and ‘the process be repeated over many generations’, and where ‘generation after generation, altruists [somehow] tend to find themselves living with altruists, and selfish individuals [somehow] tend to associate with other selfish individuals’, then ‘altruists will gradually replace the selfish types’, which all ‘seemed unlikely’ even though it was supposedly ‘biologically plausible’ and has apparently occurred in the brain worm situation. Had E.O. Wilson presented these details about this complex and improbable model then the reader would have very likely not been persuaded that in such ‘Mathematical models…group selection can prevail’ in explaining the origin of unconditionally selfless instincts such as our moral nature. So in truth, up to this point in that critical paragraph, no convincing argument had been presented. E.O. Wilson then stated that ‘More recently, in 2009, the theoretical biologist Samuel Bowles has produced a more realistic model that fits the empirical data well.’ So, while E.O. Wilson has acknowledged here that there is some doubt about how realistic the mathematical models are, he still maintains that Bowles’ more recent and ‘more realistic model…fits the empirical data well’. He then indicated that the particular ‘data’ that has ‘been sufficient to influence the evolution of human social behavior’ is ‘the level of intergroup violence’ that has occurred in human prehistory, referring at that point to a chart documenting the ‘Fraction of adult mortality due to warfare’ (p.70) over the last 14,000 years.

Basically, E.O. Wilson has argued that it is violent warfare between groups that caused natural selection of selfless cooperation to be strong enough to overcome selfish opportunism. Yes, a group with cooperative altruists will defeat a group without such altruists, but, unless Bowles’ model can persuade us otherwise, we are entitled to believe that a group with altruists will ‘quickly lose its altruists through natural selection favoring cheaters’. So E.O. Wilson’s whole theory depends on knowledge of Bowles’ supposedly ‘more realistic model’, but he provides no details of that model! This key paragraph in the book is, like the whole book, scant on substance and full of bluff. Clearly E.O. Wilson is depending on the superficially persuasive but not actually persuasive ‘iron rule’ that an altruistic group will beat a selfish group to carry the day in persuading the reader of the soundness of his theory. Aside from this paragraph, the rest of The Social Conquest of Earth focuses on building evidence for how being forced together around campfires, food shortages and other influences led to the extreme warfare that he has supposedly, but not actually, established, is needed to develop unconditionally selfless instincts. His whole theory is based on bluff.

So, by sleight of hand, E.O. Wilson has supposedly brought the reader to the situation where all they need to be shown is how extreme warfare developed in order to be persuaded that unconditionally selfless instincts were able to be developed by our ancestors, even though the evidence is that if a completely moral instinctive orientation to life in sexually reproducing individuals could have been developed it would have been developed many times over in the history of life on Earth, but again it hasn’texcept in our human situation (and to a degree in bonobos) where it was achieved through love-indoctrination.

Since E.O. Wilson hasn’t established the fundamental biological reasoning for his argument that extreme warfare gave us our moral instincts, it’s not really necessary to present his arguments for how being forced together around campfires, food shortages and other influences led to extreme warfare, nevertheless, for the sake of completeness I’ll briefly address those arguments. But before doing so, I should point out that despite admitting that while we humans are ‘eusocial’ like ants ‘there are major differences…even aside from our unique possession of culture, language, and high intelligence. The most fundamental among them is that all normal members of human societies are capable of reproducing’ (The Social Conquest of Earth, p.16), E.O. Wilson has continually and inappropriately misused the situation of colonial insects such as ants as a model for how we humans became eusocial. For example, in the May 2006 edition of National Geographic magazine, where I first saw E.O. Wilson adopting the group selection argument, he said, ‘The [ant] colony, by group selection, has developed traits that could not be possible otherwisecommunication, the caste system, cooperative behavior. It’s a unit of activity and of evolution. One colony against another is what’s being selected…ants are constantly at war. Well, so are we!…It may turn out that highly evolved societies with this level of altruism tend strongly to divide into groups that then fight against each other. We humans are constantly at war and have been since prehistory.’ Upon reading this I warned, in a publication that I was working on at the time, that ‘So, according to Wilson, we now must accept that we humans are biologically capable of being cooperative and even altruistic, but that such behaviour is driven by an extremely selfish, competitive and divisive cause: to give warring groups a competitive advantage!’ (The Great Exodus, 2006). Yes, E.O. Wilson is right, unlike ants we humans are in ‘unique possession’ of a conscious mind and have managed to become integrated as sexually reproducing individuals, BUT what this means is that our eusociality is completely different from that of the colonial insects; we suffer from a consciousness-derived, psychosis-and-neurosis-afflicted human condition, and our ancestors couldn’t have and didn’t develop full integration by elaborating the reproductive individual as ants did.

To look further at the basic argument in E.O. Wilson’s grand ‘Theory of Everything’, on pages 54 and 55 of The Social Conquest of Earth he acknowledges the fundamental problem that altruistic/unconditionally selflessly behaved, fully integrated, ‘eusocial’ societies have ‘been rare in the history of life because group selection must be exceptionally powerful to relax the grip of individual selection’, but asserts altruistic ‘Group-selected traits typically take the fiercest degree of resolve during conflicts between rival groups’, and that it is from these ‘fiercest’ of ‘conflicts’ that altruism in groups could have been forged to such a degree ‘to relax the grip of individual selection’ and become established. This is E.O. Wilson’s basic bluff, that fierce conflict between groups could have been a strong enough force to overcome ‘the grip of individual selection’. The biological reality is that fierce conflict between groups of highly social sexually reproducing individuals has been present throughout the history of life on Earth, and all it has ever produced is dominance hierarchy, never complete altruism-dependent integration. But E.O. Wilson was certainly not going to be put off by that reality; humans have moral instincts and there must be a basis for them, so, as far as he is concerned, they must have been acquired through between-group selectionand, coupled with the Multilevel Selection theory that says we have instincts for both selfishness and selflessness, he is clearly extremely happy to have devised a psychosis-avoiding, fake explanation for our human condition.

Fighting against biological reality, E.O. Wilson acknowledged that ‘the human condition is a singularity’, then, to the fundamental question of ‘why the likes of it has occurred only once and took so long in coming’, he answered that, ‘The reason is simply the extreme improbability of the preadaptations necessary for it to occur at all’ (ibid. p.45). He then describes these preadaptations as ‘a large body size’ to carry a large ‘brain’ capable of ‘advanced reasoning and culture’, then ‘grasping hands’, ‘free…from locomotion in order to manipulate objects easily’ (p.46). The next preadaptation, he claimed, ‘was a shift in diet to include a substantial amount of meat’ which ‘yields higher energy…than does vegetation’ (p.46). He then asserted that ‘The advantages of cooperation in the harvesting of meat led to the formation of highly organized groups’, and that ‘An expanded population was an advantage in the conflicts inevitably arising among different groups’ (p.47). Then ‘About a million years ago the controlled use of fire followed’ and ‘With the sharing of cooked meals came a universal means of social bonding’ (p.47). ‘With meat, fire, and cooking, campsites lasting for more than a few days at a time, and thus persistent enough to be guarded as a refuge, marked the next vital step. Such a nest, as it can also be called, has been the precursor to the attainment of eusociality by all other known animals. There is evidence of fossil campsites and their accouterments as far back as Homo erectus(p.47). ‘Along with fireside campsites came division of labor’ (p.47). He then claimed that ‘The stage was now set for the biggest-brained of African primates to make the truly defining leap to their ultimate potential’ (p.48). ‘What genetic evolutionary forces pushed our ancestors to the eusociality threshold, then across it?’ (p.139). ‘The cohesion forced by the concentration of groups to protected sites was more than just a step through the evolutionary maze. It was…the event that launched the final drive to modern Homo sapiens(p.44). ‘The precursors of Homo sapiens, if archaeological evidence and the behavior of modern hunter-gatherers are accepted as guides, formed well-organized groups that competed with one another for territory and other scarce resources’ (p.53), and it was these ‘fiercest’ of ‘conflicts’ that were ‘powerful [enough] to relax the grip of individual selection’ and allow altruism to become established in humans. ‘War…[is] Humanity’s Hereditary Curse. History is a bath of blood…Our bloody nature…is ingrained because group-versus-group was a principal driving force that made us what we are’ (p.62). ‘From April to June in 1994, killers from the Hutu majority in Rwanda set out to exterminate the Tutsi minority…In a hundred days…800,000 people died…Russia’s Great Terror under Stalin resulted in the deliberate starvation to death of more than three million Soviet Ukrainians during the winter of 193233 (p.63). Wars and genocide have been universal and eternal, respecting no particular time or culture(p.65). ‘Tools from the earliest Neolithic period include instruments clearly designed for fighting’ (p.67). ‘Bushmen of South Africa…also engaged in tribal wars’ (p.68). ‘Tribal aggressiveness thus goes well back beyond Neolithic times, but no one as yet can say exactly how far. It could have begun at the time of Homo habilis(p.72). ‘Jane Goodall…documented the murders within chimpanzee groups and lethal raids conducted between groups’ (p.73). ‘Chimpanzees and bonobos occupy and defend territories…Chimps and bonobos alternatively break into subgroups and re-aggregate. They advertise the discovery of fruit-laden trees by calling back and forth but do not share the fruit they pick. They occasionally hunt in small packs. Successful members of the pack share the meat among their fellow hunters, but charity mostly comes to an end there. Of greatest importance, the apes have no campfire around which to gather’ (p.42).

Thus E.O. Wilson claims that ‘The dilemma of good and evil was created by multilevel selection…Individual selection is responsible for much of what we call sin, while group selection is responsible for the greater part of virtue. Together they have created the conflict between the poorer and the better angels of our nature’ (p.241). ‘Human beings are prone to be moraldo the right thing, hold back, give aid to others, sometimes even at personal riskbecause natural selection has favored those interactions of group members benefitting the group as a whole’ (p.247). ‘Selection at the individual level tends to create competitiveness and selfish behavior among group membersin status, mating, and the securing of resources. In opposition, selection between groups tends to create selfless behavior, expressed in greater generosity and altruism, which in turn promote stronger cohesion and strength of the group as a whole. An inevitable result of the mutually offsetting forces of multilevel selection is permanent ambiguity in the individual human mind, leading to countless scenarios among people in the way they bond, love, affiliate, betray, share, sacrifice, steal, deceive, redeem, punish, appeal, and adjudicate. The struggle endemic to each person’s brain’ (p.274). ‘Multilevel selection (group and individual selection combined) also explains the conflicted nature of motivations. Every normal person feels the pull of conscience, of heroism against cowardice, of truth against deception, of commitment against withdrawal. It is our fate to be tormented…We, all of us, live out our lives in conflict and contention’ (p.290).

We see that E.O. Wilson’s basic assumption is that human prehistory has been characterised by warfarehe says that ‘Wars and genocide have been universal and eternal, respecting no particular time or culture’but is that true? Wilson writes that ‘Early humans had the innate equipmentand likely the tendency alsoto use projectiles in capturing prey and repelling enemies. The advantages gained were surely decisive. Spear points and arrowheads are among the earliest artifacts found in archaeological sites’ (ibid. p.29), but as the archaeologist Steven Mithen says about this: ‘No, the earliest artifacts are from around 2.5 million years ago, but spear points are not made until a mere 250,000 years ago and arrowheads might have first been manufactured no longer ago than 20,000 years’ (‘How Fit Is E.O. Wilson’s Evolution?’, The New York Review of Books, 21 Jun. 2012). And in response to Wilson’s claim that ‘Archaeologists have found burials of massacred people to be a commonplace’ and ‘archaeological sites are strewn with the evidence of mass conflict’, Mithen argues that ‘No, both are quite rare, especially in pre-state societies, and those that are known are difficult to interpret’ (ibid).

As to the possibility of our distant primate ancestors being cooperative and not warlike, we have the evidence of the extraordinarily cooperative and peaceful nature of bonobos, a species whose behaviour Wilson lumps together with chimpanzees. For instance, on page 40 he cites a single instance of bonobos hunting in a group and uses that ‘evidence’ to draw erroneous comparisons with the more aggressive common chimpanzees; ‘That’s one more problem out of the way’, he seems to be saying, but, as many primatologists will attest, bonobo behaviour is very different to common chimpanzeesconsider this from Barbara Fruth: ‘up to 100 bonobos at a time from several groups spend their night together. That would not be possible with chimpanzees because there would be brutal fighting between rival groups’ (Paul Raffaele, ‘Bonobos: The apes who make love, not war’, 2003, Last Tribes on Earth.com). Yes, the truth, as will be described in detail later in Part 8:4, is that, unlike chimpanzees, bonobos are extraordinarily cooperative, loving and gentlebehaviour that they, like us, achieved through love-indoctrination.

As I have explained in Part 3:11, where all the stages of ever-increasing upset in our human-condition-afflicted journey are presented, the psychologically upset state of the human condition emerged some two million years ago when our conscious mind became sufficiently confident in understanding the relationship of events that occur through time to take over management of our lives from our original, all-loving instincts. Thus, upset in humans has been increasing for two million years, which means that while humans living a mere 14,000 years ago in the Neolithic period will be somewhat less upset or more innocent than humans living today, they will still be far from free of upset. So yes, tribal warfare has been occurring for a long time, but that doesn’t mean that competitive and aggressive warfare characterised the lives of our earliest ancestors, as E.O. Wilson would have us believe; it does not mean that our species’ original instinctive orientation wasn’t to living in an unconditionally selfless, all-loving, fully cooperative and harmonious integrative stateand it doesn’t mean that the relative innocence of hunter-forager tribes still living, like the Bushmen of South Africa and the Yanomamö of South America, don’t reveal a great deal about how extremely upset the great majority of the human race has become. (Much more will be said in Part 5:2 about science’s denial of the relative innocence of so-called ‘primitive’ races.) As all the quotes from the great thinkers included earlier in Part 4:12H-vi indicate, our distant ancestors did once live in a ‘Garden of Eden’-like, ‘Golden Age’ of upset-free, all-loving innocence. Children are born innocent and happy, not bedevilled by two conflicting instinctive states; and the human race emerged innocent and happy, not bedevilled by selfish and selfless conflicting instinctive states. We individually start out, and as a species started out, innocent and then our conscious mind develops/developed and then we become/became sufferers of the human condition. Where is the acknowledgement of the innocence of children and of the innocence of original humans in this Multilevel explanation? Who is being honest, E.O. Wilson or the following? The founders of the great religions whose works, as Richard Heinberg said, all ‘begin with the recognition…that a former sense of oneness…has been lost’; and Bruce Chatwin when he wrote that ‘Every mythology remembers the innocence of the first state’; and Nikolai Berdyaev when he wrote that ‘The memory of a lost paradise, of a Golden Age, is very deep in man’; and Plato when he wrote that humans have ‘knowledge, both before and at the moment of birth…of all absolute standards…[of] beauty, goodness, uprightness, holiness…our souls exist before our birth’, and ‘the soul’ he described as ‘the pure and everlasting and immortal and changeless…realm of the absolute…[our] soul resembles the divine’; and William Wordsworth when he wrote that ‘The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star…cometh from afar…trailing clouds of glory do we come / From God [the fully integrated state], who is our home’; and Jean-Jacques Rousseau when he wrote that ‘nothing is more gentle than man in his primitive state’ and ‘Man is born free but is everywhere in chains’; and, finally, Laurens van der Post when he wrote that ‘This shrill, brittle, self-important life of today is by comparison a graveyard where the living are dead and the dead are alive and talking [through our soul] in the still, small, clear voice of a love and trust in life that we have for the moment lost…[there was a time when] All on earth and in the universe were still members and family of the early race seeking comfort and warmth through the long, cold night before the dawning of individual consciousness in a togetherness which still gnaws like an unappeasable homesickness at the base of the human heart’, and ‘He [the Bushman] and his needs were committed to the nature of Africa and the swing of its wide seasons as a fish to the sea. He and they all participated so deeply of one another’s being that the experience could almost be called mystical. For instance, he seemed to know what it actually felt like to be an elephant, a lion, an antelope, a steenbuck, a lizard, a striped mouse, mantis, baobab tree, yellow-crested cobra, or starry-eyed amaryllis, to mention only a few of the brilliant multitudes through which he so nimbly moved. Even as a child it seemed to me that his world was one without secrets between one form of being and another.’ Today, when I am writing this Part, which happens to be 28 July 2012, there is a front-page pictorial in The Weekend Australian newspaper about a 63-year-old retired school teacher named Russell Bathard who, for 30 years now, has been riding his bicycle literally all over outback Australia, camping every night in a swag beside his bike under the stars. He described how ‘A couple of weeks ago I saw a whole flock of parrots turning at the same time, and their colours glinted in the sun’, and of how ‘I can smell rain well before I can see it or feel it when I’m out here.’ Basically all Bathard’s cycling through the endless outback had disconnected him from ‘This shrill, brittle, self-important life of today’ that van der Post so honestly spoke of, and allowed the ‘still, small, clear voice of a love and trust in life that we have for the moment lost’ of his/our soul to re-surface and connect him to all the sensitivities and beauty of our world. It is a vicious lie that we humans don’t have a completely concerned-with-the-larger-whole-not-yourself, fully cooperative, all-loving, utterly harmonious, totally empathetic, absolutely innocent original instinctive self or soulbut then again, the psychological agony of our human condition has been so great that while we humans couldn’t truthfully explain our condition all we had to protect ourselves from the vicious, unbearable self-confrontation was such matching, equally vicious, retaliatory lies.

In contrast to the descriptions provided above from some of history’s most honest thinkers, the following quotes from The Social Conquest of Earth indicate E.O. Wilson’s own views on human nature: ‘Are people innately good, but corruptible by the forces of evil? Or, are they instead innately wicked, and redeemable only by the forces of good? People are both. And so it will forever be unless we change our genes, because the human dilemma was foreordained in the way our species evolved, and therefore an unchangeable part of human nature. Human beings and their social orders are intrinsically imperfectible’ (p.241). ‘In summary, the human condition is an endemic turmoil rooted in the evolution processes that created us. The worst in our nature coexists with the best, and so it will ever be’ (p.56). As has already been emphasised, E.O. Wilson’s view that the conflict within humans of the human condition is ‘forever’ ‘unchangeable’, ‘intrinsically imperfectible’that ‘The worst in our nature coexists with the best, and so it will ever be’flies in the face of all we humans have ever known about the real nature of ‘the human condition’ and its eventual amelioration, which is that one day a true-not-fake, psychosis-reconciling and redeeming/healing understanding of our human condition would be found (which it now has been with the explanation being presented here in Freedom: Expanded Book 1) and that, as a result, humans would be permanently liberated and transformed from the duress of that condition (a TRANSFORMATION that is further explained, described and evidenced in Freedom: Expanded Book 2). Again, all the anticipations of the arrival of a reconciling, completely human-race-transforming understanding of ourselves that are documented in Part 3:12 provide overwhelming evidence of this expectation.

To quickly look at a few remaining issues that E.O. Wilson raises in The Social Conquest of Earth. With regard to the important question of why we humans became so intelligent (developed full consciousness), E.O. Wilson wrote of ‘The necessity for fine-graded evaluation by alliance members…The strategies of this game were written as a complicated mix of closely calibrated altruism, cooperation, competition, domination, reciprocity, defection, and deceit. To play the game the human way, it was necessary for the evolving populations to acquire an ever higher degree of intelligence. They had to feel empathy for others, to measure the emotions of friend and enemy alike, to judge the intentions of all of them, and to plan a strategy for personal social interactions. As a result, the human brain became simultaneously highly intelligent and intensely social’ (ibid. p.17). We humans certainly have become a devious, cunning, calculating species, but, as was pointed out in Part 4:12H-v, not as a result of a conflict of instincts for selfishness and instincts for selflessness, but as a result of a psychological upset state. We didn’t become a fully conscious, highly intelligent species as a result of having to manage the human condition, rather our human condition resulted from becoming fully conscious. We took the fruit from the tree of knowledge, became conscious, and then we fell from grace, became corrupted, became sufferers of the human condition. The real reason we humans became conscious while other animals haven’t is briefly explained in Part 8:4C, and fully explained in Part 8:7B.

Like D.S. Wilson and Sober, E.O. Wilson also uses culture to bolster his between-group selection explanation for how we became socially intelligent beings. For example, he wrote that ‘meat and campfire are not enough by themselves to explain the rapid increase in size of the brain that occurred [in humans]. For the missing piece we can turn, I believe with some confidence, to the cultural intelligence hypothesis’ (ibid. p.226). ‘Gene-culture coevolution, the impact of genes on culture and, reciprocally, culture on genes, is a process of equal importance to the natural sciences, the social sciences, and the humanities. Its study provides a way to connect these three great branches (p.236). ‘The intricacies of gene-culture coevolution are fundamental to understanding the human condition’ (p.240). As was explained in Part 4:12H-vi, culture has played a big part in the human journey, but not in creating the human condition, but in trying to manage it.

‘E.O. Wilson’s Theory of Everything’ even has a completely dishonest psychosis-denying explanation for our ego, which claims that ‘To form groups, drawing visceral comfort and pride from familiar fellowship, and to defend the group enthusiastically against rival groupsthese are among the absolute universals of human nature…People must have a tribe. It gives them a name in addition to their own and social meaning in a chaotic world. It makes the environment less disorienting and dangerous…People savor the company of like-minded friends, and they yearn to be in one of the besta combat marine regiment, perhaps, an elite college, the executive committee of a company, a religious sect, a fraternity, a garden clubany collectivity that can be compared favorably with other, competing groups of the same category’ (ibid. p.57). As the Adam Stork story describes in Part 3:2, the real psychological reason for humans’ extremely egocentric state of mind is because we suffer from, and have been perpetually trying to disprove, an immense insecurity about our sense of goodness and worth.

E.O. Wilson also has a psychosis-denying explanation for why humans have ‘continuous sexual activity’, which is that it ‘promotes female-male bonding and biparental care’ (ibid. p.79). And on the issue of homosexuality, he says, ‘a low dose of homosexual-tending genes may give competitive advantages to a practicing heterosexual. Or, homosexuality may give advantages to the group by special talents’ (p.254). The psychological reason for humans’ continual sexual activity and homosexuality was briefly explained in Part 4:12F, and is more fully explained in my book A Species in Denial in the chapter titled ‘Bringing peace to the war between the sexes’. E.O. Wilson also claims that ‘Prolonged childhood’ was for ‘allowing extended learning periods under the guidance of adults’, when the real reason for it was to allow for the maternal, nurturing, love-indoctrination of infants.

E.O. Wilson concludes The Social Conquest of Earth by saying that his hope is that ‘out of an ethic of simple decency to one another, the unrelenting application of reason, and acceptance of what we truly are, our dreams will finally come home to stay’ (p.297). Yes, a future for the human race depends on ‘the unrelenting application of reason, and acceptance of what we truly are’, but if we were to find ‘what we truly are’ and, by so doing, permanently ameliorate that condition and finally be capable of ‘decency to one another’ it had to be as a result of HONEST reasoning, NOT E.O. Wilson’s extremely DISHONEST reasoning! Lying was never going to get us to the liberating truth about our condition.

 

Summary assessment of the theory of Eusociality

In Part 4:9, which marks the beginning of this analysis of the development of dishonest, denial-complying mechanistic/reductionist biology, it was pointed out that virtually all scientists since Darwin have totally avoided the real issue involved in the human condition of a psychologically upset state by simply blaming that upset competitive, selfish and aggressive behaviour on supposed brutish and savage animal instincts within us that our intellect has to somehow control or overcome. While the recent theory of Eusociality added supposed group selection-derived selfless instincts to these supposed selfish animal instincts in us, there has, in truth, been no change to this basic strategy of avoiding any acknowledgement of the involvement of a consciousness-induced psychologically upset state in our troubled condition.

So, in E.O. Wilson’s ‘New Theory of Eusociality’ the situation essentially ends at the same place it did with his old theory of Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology, with no recognition of a consciousness-involved psychosis in our human condition, despite the word ‘psychology’ appearing in the description of that theory. In the new theory, apart from an extremely superficial reference to ‘personality traits’ (p.101), Wilson still refrains from referring to the psychology of our human condition, to our psychosis or neurosis or alienation or insecurity of self or depression or the problem of self-confrontation. Contrast this with my books that do address the psychology of the human condition head-on, and do mention these terms and issues thousands of timesbecause, as R.D. Laing recognised, ‘Our alienation goes to the roots. The realization of this is the essential springboard for any serious reflection on any aspect of present inter-human life.’

The fact is, the real psychologically upset state of the human condition is the very last thing E.O. Wilson wants to think about. His whole career has been entirely dedicated to finding ways to deal with the human condition that don’t require him to have to confront the issue of ‘our alienation’ that, in truth, ‘is the essential springboard for any serious reflection on any aspect of present inter-human life’. Further, the point that was initially made in Part 4:9 about dishonest mechanistic/reductionist science as a whole, and again in Part 4:12E about Evolutionary Psychology, has to be made yet again for the theory of Eusocialitywhich is that the argument still being dogmatically pursued is that ‘Selfish, self-preservation behaviour is only natural because that is what every other species practices and that is what we still have instincts for and the task for us conscious, intelligent humans is to use our marvellous reasoning mind to control these savage and brutish animal instincts within us.’ So instead of our conscious intellect being the guilty party, in the sense of being that part of ourselves that caused us to ‘fall from grace’ and have to be banished from the Garden of Eden of our original innocent, cooperatively orientated, all-loving, moral instinctive state (as Moses, Plato and all our mythologies have so honestly admitted), our conscious intellect is, again, being made out to be the faultless, good part of ourselvesa manipulation of the truth that, again, condemns our instincts as the villain: ‘Wonderful, we are good, our conscious self is good and our instincts are awful, what a relief, I, my conscious thinking self, feels terrific.’ Never mind that this was all an outrageous, reverse-of-the-truth lie. What a trick! Instead of our instinctive past being a ‘paradise’, ‘Golden Age’ of ‘togetherness’ before ‘the dawning of individual consciousness’ brought about a world of highly intelligent people living an immensely insecure, ‘shrill, brittle, self-important life’, which in truth is ‘a graveyard where the living are dead’, as Sir Laurens van der Post and others recognised, our instincts were deemed bad while our intellect was viewed as wonderful. What a complete and terrible assault on the truth, but what a relief for our upset, corrupting intellect. We, our conscious thinking self, had finally made ourselves out to be the hero that we have always intuitively believed we were, and in fact are, but it was a hollow ‘achievement’ based on an absolute lie. We had lifted the burden of guilt, the psychological insecurity of the issue of our less-than-ideally-behaved human condition, but we had done so fraudulently. The elements involved in the human condition of moral instincts and a corrupting intellect weren’t being looked at honestly, rather, the complete opposite was occurringthose elements were being totally misrepresented. The human condition wasn’t being confrontedit was being hidden behind the biggest mountain of lies that could possibly be assembled!

As was emphasised at the end of the Part on Evolutionary Psychology, the truth is that our story is one about the ever-changing and developing psychology of our human situationhow our original innocent, fully cooperative instinctive psyche or soul condemned our intellect, leaving it no choice but to retaliate and repress that wonderfully integratively orientated part of ourselves, with the result that we became upset; that is, psychotic (soul-repressed) and neurotic (mind-distressed) psychological sufferers of the human condition. But, unable to face and deal with this real and main psychological description of our behaviour, we ended up with completely artificial and superficial and deeply dishonest accounts of ourselves, like E.O. Wilson’s latest theory of Eusociality, which doesn’t refer to our species’ psychosis anywhere; it doesn’t admit that we are a fundamentally sick species.

The fact is, a true account of human nature would acknowledge and address the real issue of our alienated, sick, psychotic and neurotic condition. Again, as that most truthful of psychiatrists, R.D. Laing, wrote, ‘The condition of alienation, of being asleep, of being unconscious, of being out of one’s mind, is the condition of the normal man…between us and It [our true self or soul] there is a veil which is more like fifty feet of solid concrete. Deus absconditus. Or we have absconded…The outer divorced from any illumination from the inner is in a state of darkness. We are in an age of darkness. The state of outer darkness is a state of sini.e. alienation or estrangement from the inner light…We are all murderers and prostitutesno matter to what culture, society, class, nation one belongs…We are bemused and crazed creatures, strangers to our true selves, to one another, and to the spiritual and material world.’ ‘We are dead, but think we are alive. We are asleep, but think we are awake. We are dreaming, but take our dreams to be reality. We are the halt, lame, blind, deaf, the sick. But we are doubly unconscious. We are so ill that we no longer feel ill, as in many terminal illnesses. We are mad, but have no insight [into the fact of our madness].’

As already mentioned, Arthur Koestler summarised mechanistic, reductionist science’s deliberate blindness to the issue of the ‘mental disorder’ of our ‘unique’ human condition when he wrote that ‘symptoms of the mental disorder which appears to be endemic in our species…are specifically and uniquely human, and not found in any other species. Thus it seems only logical that our search for explanations [of human behaviour] should also concentrate primarily on those attributes of homo sapiens which are exclusively human and not shared by the rest of the animal kingdom. But however obvious this conclusion may seem, it runs counter to the prevailing reductionist trend. “Reductionism” is the philosophical belief that all human activities can be “reduced” to i.e., explained by the [non-psychosis involved] behavioural responses of lower animals Pavlov’s dogs, Skinner’s rats and pigeons, Lorenz’s greylag geese, Morris’s hairless apes…That is why the scientific establishment has so pitifully failed to define the predicament of man.’ Koestler complained of ‘the sterile deserts of reductionist philosophy’, asserting that ‘a correct diagnosis of the condition of man [had to be] based on a new approach to the sciences of life’ (Janus: A Summing Up, 1978, pp.19, 20 of 354).

Earlier, in Part 4:7, I also referred to how Nikolai Berdyaev exposed the extreme dishonesty of the reverse-of-the-truth lie that ‘our instincts are the villains and our intellect is guiltless, secure, in-control, psychosis-free and healthy’ when he observed that ‘psychologists were wrong in assuming that man was a healthy creature, mainly conscious and intellectual, and should be studied from that point of view. Man is a sick being, with a strong unconscious life(The Destiny of Man, 1931, tr. N. Duddington, 1960, pp.67-68 of 310). He also clearly indicated that understanding of the human condition depended on acknowledging, not denying, that ‘The human soul is divided, an agonizing conflict between opposing elements is going on in it…the distinction between the conscious and the subconscious mind is fundamental for the new psychology. Mental disorders are due to the conflict between the two’ (ibid). As Berdyaev accurately summarised, ‘man is an irrational, paradoxical, essentially tragic being in whom two worlds, two opposite principles, are at war…Philosophers and scientists have done very little to elucidate the problem of man’ (ibid. p.49). Yes, the real description of the conflicting elements in our psychologically upset, ‘sick’ human condition involves ‘the distinction between the conscious and the [instinctive] subconscious mind’.

Again, the reason ‘Philosophers and scientists have done very little to elucidate the problem of man’, and ‘why the scientific establishment has so pitifully failed to define the predicament of man’, was because the human condition wasn’t being truthfully confronted. Instead, as was described in Part 4:9, what we have been fed by ‘the scientific establishment’ is a whole world of dishonesty, an immense castle of lies, a great paradigm of madness where everyone in the world swans around, seemingly confident that the mental world they are inhabiting is completely rational and sound, making jokes and slapping each other on the back in happy reassurance that all is well and good, awarding each other Nobel Prizes for being brilliant, etc, etcbasically sinking deeper and deeper into a terrible swamp of delusion!

With specific regard to E.O. Wilson’s ‘New Theory of Eusociality’, the points that were made earlier about the nullification of the subject of the human condition also need to be re-stated. While denial was necessary while we couldn’t truthfully explain the human condition, the great danger of taking the art of denial to such extremes as E.O. Wilson has done with this latest fake, trivialised, extraordinarily superficial ‘explanation’ of the human condition is to permanently discredit what the human condition actually is. He has made it seem like it is not profoundly distressing at all, just two different instincts within us that are sometimes at odds. The subject of the human condition used to be an almost sacred subject, one that was only referred to in moments of deep profundity, but now it can be talked about as if it is nothing extraordinary at all. The most serious of subjects has been rendered benign, virtually inconsequential! Already, in 2013, a school teacher has written to me saying, ‘In support of what you wrote about the term Human Condition not being sacred anymore, on Friday my year 12s were trying to write an introduction to an essay and one of them said “I love the term The Human Condition, I can use it in just about any essay for any subject”’ (WTM records, 15 Feb. 2013). What E.O. Wilson has done is not explain the human condition but nullify it. When the core issue about what it is to be human is finally completely trivialised, as it now is with E.O. Wilson’s account of it, we have the ultimate example of how denial is taking humanity to the very brink of terminal dishonesty/ alienation/ superficiality/ darkness/ death. Yes, E.O. Wilson is the quintessential anti-Christ, the embodiment of the very opposite of truth. That is the reality: E.O. Wilson’s ‘summa work’ represents the grand finale in the two million year long story of the development of denial on Earthit is the final great push to have the world of lies with all its sickness, darkness and ugliness take over the world. Make no mistake, with his seductive but completely dishonest account of the human condition E.O. Wilson is trying to kill the human race, prevent it from ever reaching liberating understanding. The long anticipated last great battle on Earth, the fabled battle of Armageddon, is actually the battle between the entrenched dark world of denial and the emerging new enlightened, true world of denial-free understandingwhich basically boils down to a battle between E.O. Wilson’s fake, superficial, not-genuinely-biological, trivialising account of the human condition, and the true, human-condition-confronting-and-penetrating biological explanation of the human condition being presented here in Freedom: Expanded Book 1. Choose your side.