Click Here to Save the World
“You can disagree with behavior or a particular position, but you do not resort to calling an opponent worthless.”
– Kofi Annan, Former United Nations Secretary-General.
Both as individuals and as a species, humans have never been granted so much power; the power to change their lives, and to change the course of history at high speed, for better or worse. The media’s algorithms now write the headlines based on what people click on, and politicians inevitably respond to the headlines. So, what will you click on? Just as importantly, what will you not click on?
Different Genetypes (as explained in The You Code) will lean different ways when it comes to clicking, but the common denominator is too often driven by fear (which is the root of anger). Fear is a powerful emotion hardwired into your ancient genes for survival. For most of our 2.5 million year existence, life was a constant struggle, so fear served us well. We learned, for example, that fire and predatory animals had the potential to kill us. When triggered far enough, this fear response activates some ingenious biology thanks to adrenalin: our faces and limbs turn paler as blood rushes into the torso to minimize blood loss from any severed limbs in battle. At such critical times, we also are given a brief taste of the higher awareness that humans can tap into when totally present; our senses become so focused that time actually appears to visually slow down (why, for example, when you see a fragile object fall to the ground it appears to happen in slow motion).
Through the principle of genetic inertia, this fear response is equally as powerful today, only in our contemporary world of imagery and information, our brains still can’t tell the difference between an actual threat and a perceived threat. A tiger circling an ancient forager’s camp was a very real event, and a contemporary headline and photograph telling you, “Tiger Escapes from Local Zoo!” can also generate a similar effect on the human mind and the subsequent biological responses. The zoo in question is a thousand miles away from you and the tiger involved is a harmless cub, but your perception of the headline you click on is what counts.
The fear response is also triggered by a sense of “others” threatening our existence, those people “out there,” outside our tribe. In our ancient past, strangers entering our territory used to represent a very real threat; the stranger could be asymptomatically carrying diseases that our tribe did not yet have immunity to, the stranger could be here to do us harm or steal our food or challenge our valued beliefs. Again, by the principle of genetic inertia, these primitive responses are still hidden in our ancient genes, and we see the sad evidence of it everywhere today as our Global Tribe tears itself apart, fueled like never before thanks to what we are clicking on or not clicking on. There is no profit in peace and harmony.
Here is a true story that generated a headline I think you’d have clicked on. In the first airline I worked for, in 1995, there was a minor incident that I read from our internal reports. Upon pushing back from a stand, there had been a communication error between the captain and the tug driver, and the captain started to taxi away before the tug had been fully disconnected, but quickly stopped when he realized his error. There was minor damage to the tow bar and the front undercarriage, and the passengers heard a loud thud and felt a minor jerk. Nobody was hurt, and the jet was towed back to stand. Here’s how the headline appeared the next day in the press: “Airliner tries to take off with tug attached!”
I miss those days when “fake news” really was fake news, when it was merely garden-variety sensationalism that you gave the mainstream media a pass for because it entertained us, but now it’s getting confused with news that people simply may not agree with. I also miss the days when the mainstream media at least made an effort to appear neutral, but they’re only mirroring how people feel so they can stay in business; we tend to only listen to what our lower self (ego) wants to hear so it can never be wrong. “Fake news” is now also something that the “others” are saying. A derivative of this phenomenon is how we are now constantly presented with prepackaged moral dilemmas in the following format: “You can choose Opinion A or Opinion B (but if you choose Opinion B “shame on you”). Such is the infantile thinking of the lower self and the binary thinking of a patriarchal world. What about Opinion C? What if both Opinion A and B have valid points, and perhaps there is room to agree? Or, maybe I can’t even form an opinion because nobody has all the facts.
If we can’t have healthy debates without trying to gag or vilify the people who don’t see things the same way as us, we aren’t a civilization; we’re a menagerie. However offensive another person’s views are to you, dismissing or browbeating won’t persuade that person’s ego to change its views; worse, it will merely muster spite in that person and make them seek comrades. This point was made in Part Seven of The You Code when I stated how compassion is what brings us back in balance, not aggression.
We reap what we sow, we all bleed red, and for all the differences we squabble over, the only significant difference between us is the one we remain oblivious to: Genetypes (as explained in The You Code). Knowing your Genetype = respecting your Genetype = respecting yourself = giving respect to others = receiving respect from others = respecting yourself = and on the cycle goes. For example, an MG-7 (Power) may get sucked into an eternal duel about an FG-5 (Protect the Vulnerable) getting in the way of his business project, but he must accept the balancing force she represents, just as she must rein in her tendency to take her protection to extremes, and appreciate that we need incentivized entrepreneurs to solve our problems. This is how a balanced tribe works together, and Genetypal awareness is the key.
In Part Seven of The You Code I explained how something in our ancient genes makes us feel good when being kind and feel bad when being mean. The same applies when we are fighting one another or when we have unity, the former making us feel bad, and the latter making us feel good. Deep down humans yearn for catharsis, but the lower self tries to drag us down the wrong Fork in the Road, thwarting the process, and it will succeed until we become conscious. Regardless of your opinion of Barack Obama, he said something before he became elected in 2008 that I believe was a magic ingredient in his surprise victory, something that appealed to our inherent and unconscious yearning for unification: “There is no conservative America, there is no liberal America, there is just America.” Society is unravelling as we enter the final act of a system that was designed for the 1950s, and a great deal more friction and harm lays ahead unless we learn to see each other’s opinions and work together. This isn’t naïve; it’s necessary. The survival of our species may even depend on it.
I offer the idea of “mutually inclusive thinking.” This is as opposed to “mutually exclusive thinking,” where one idea cancels out the other idea; the kind of binary, patriarchal thinking that causes conflict and ignorance. Mutually inclusive thinking is the opposite: the principle that ideas or elements of them can co-exist, akin to “the grey area” and the abstract world of The Feminine and nature.