dna created the human mind. all our varied cultures and parts of our cultures are just extended dna phenotype: that is: they are expressions of dna dna commands all activity in all creatures and all thought, word and action in humans
our smarter cerebral cortex thinks that it is in command... ...it is only a handmaiden for our amygdala or subcortical areas our cortex just takes orders from its commander everything we experience is reviewed by the amygdala and given a value : positive or negative all our responses depend on that and all our choices for thought, word or action (which are always responses either to internal or external environment) are started from the amygdala
the amygdala chooses positive or negative states of mind happy or not happy which are reward or punishment for things which either favour or don't favour dna survival
this is all our emotions are emotions are only put there for dna survival
we are fooled into believing that emotions are us, so are to be believed and honored
we are fooled into believing that they are controlled by us, but that they just sometimes get out of control
we are fooled into believing that they are inscrutable and mysterious (and most of us are very content to hold to that view, as if it suggested great wisdom)
this idea that emotions are inscrutable and mysterious is ubiquitous and certainly reflected in philosophy (thus, in philosophy, the proust approach to emotions: ...just drown in them or the hegel approach ...flounder in them)
this is the main reason that we have trouble with emotions we are ...utterly unable to understand them ...completely incinerated at the start line
because we don't ask the right question(s) ...basic questions a scientist would normally ask: what, where, why, when, how but scientists, when confronted by the topic of emotions are put off simple conjecture and deduction and hold to experiments and pet scans. this approach only allows progress in understanding to happen slowly
we did not construct emotions ourselves as a cortical, conscious creation... ...therefore dna made them dna's finished products are only what survival chooses so dna translation into the future is by survival capacity so our emotions' neural network programs have been chosen by dna survival so their characteristics are survival qualities
so the summary is emotions are dna survival neural network programs only. a survival programme needs to have these capacities:
it is a directive command networks: (they order us) it is durable: (hundreds of thousands of years old) it is inscrutable: so far our cortex has not understood them, (even after many millenia and even with our progressively more capable cortex)
people tend to consider that thinking much about life is unnecessary thus the now popular term 'over thinking' people tend to consider that it is better left for secular and religious experts to think about life even though each of us gets a number of years to have a go at life
socrates seemed to consider that thinking about life is a good idea... ..."a life unexamined is not worth living"
to leave thinking about your own life for others is a mistake
consider: every thought you have every word you say every thing you do
why do they happen? you would say "bccause I choose" ...why do you choose?
answer: "i just do"
it's me. "I do these things"
what is the aim that all your thinking, speaking or doing is headed for, the end, finish, purpose or goal ?
if you think long enough about it the goal of these can only be : happiness or contentment or some other description for positive emotion.
what makes you seek happiness? is it a concept we have all individually invented? if we invented it consciously, then when? what for? and why did we invent unhappiness? and why do we have so little control over it?
the answer is that we did not invent it the inventor is dna
there are times when your mind seems to be freewheeling and activity seems to be spontaneous
if it is spontaneous then your conscious mind didn't choose it. what did? it must be the way your mind is composed or programmed or formatted. what composed it?
there is only one answer: dna
so, behind every type of activity in your mind is dna that means also behind every word and action is dna
when your mind's activity is aiming for happiness which it often is then your mind is serving the search for one emotion, happiness, and it is programmed to search for happiness by your dna
when your mind is on auto pilot or freewheeling the only reason it does it is because it has been programmed to, by your dna
"the human condition" is the problem of our struggle our struggle is the struggle to be happy...
those who ponder this problem (probably everyone who ever lived) are in two categories secular and religious
if you wanted a summary answer from either camp, secular or religious about the solution to the problem your answer would be an argument; nobody agrees about it
it appears that our mind is always committed to some degree of turmoil and this is the human condition and we must accept that but we never know why
the reason for the turmoil is: our mind is run by dna
dna is chosen by survival ...no exception
so if the process which chooses dna is survival then dna's design programmes for our minds and all of our body have only one characteristic that can be predicted for the future... ...survival qualities
if our bodies survive long enough and allow procreation and maybe some nurturing then we humans are doing our job given us by dna which is to keep dna surviving through time
this applies to our minds as well as our bodies there is only one design mandate, survival, of dna...
the goal that our minds are inevitably bound to is the search for happiness
why does dna want us to be happy?
the answer can only be for survival of dna
how does happiness help dna survive?
look at most of the things that make people happy... having friends romance having sex having wealth having family having a purpose having a future doing well being competetive being dominant having control making discoveries these and a few others are all things that promote human survival and procreation and therefore dna survival
the ethics issues that have dogged philosophers for ages are simply the dilemma where our minds are programmed for both individual happiness and communal happiness and these two conflict
the overall reason we are bamboozled by life is that dna has survived better that way so far without us understanding emotions at all but always programmed to obey dna's instrument...emotions to look for happiness
the want of happiness tends to direct us along paths which are not integrated, imperative, focused narrowly on one target at a time,
these targets tend to easily conflict with each other often these targets often are not mutual or sustainable the negative emotions that arise to redirect our paths are inarticulate, dominant, misused and not understood our responses to these negative emotions are often inappropriate because they often involve furthers negative emotions escalating these often incite negative emotions in others these emotional reactions are often used as weapons for control of others negative emotions often persist over extended time in ourselves and in others by innate intransigence and persistence through memory
all of this is because we don't know what emotions are really
so dna forces on us different targets to reach happiness and these targets we variously accept or refuse once we accept a target or fail in reaching a target a trigger is pulled we become the servant of that emotion our conscious thoughts are subsumed and getting out of that state is difficult
our goal is not dna survival nevertheless our goal has to be...
...to search for happiness we don't get a choice there even the most grossly depressed or self harming person is only so because of the want of happiness
but to get happiness properly
we need to arrive at happiness that is mutual and sustainable... ...by the use of our intelligent cerebral cortex but since our cortex does not know what is going on mutual and sustainable happiness only happens by intuition, based probably on experience
many/most people look for mutual and sustainable happiness they practice restraint or stoicism in an intuitive way knowing that knee jerk obedience to emotion... ...doesn't work. the above discussion explains why this restraint is needed
eventually, happiness has to be mutual and sustainable
because if there are pockets of unhappiness in a community they will eventually affect and reduce the happiness of most and so happiness will not be sustainable
this is something that is appreciated by our analytical cerebral cortex as a theoretical truth by most of us but only partly respected by our emotions
while our cortex can see communal happiness as a broad imperative our emotions only see it as one of two options: communal or not communal and this distinction is not clear in emotions with emotions it can go either way from buddha like selflessness to the craven self indulgence of a mugabe all paths can find degrees of happiness
one of the reasons and ways that emotions can allow non communal happiness is that individuals chasing goals with leadership can help dna survival occasionally the leadership drive gets out of control and the community suffers also the pursuit of dominance over others helps dna survive by groups or communities having good direction and progress dna encourages leadership by rewarding it with happiness
but leadership and dominance can just as easily be at the cost of the broad community by making power an intoxicating sensation leaders can become drunk with power and no longer serve community but serve their own interests only
thus a vast swathe of selfish behaviour sprawling across all human history is encouraged by dna through emotions
some religions claim that all our evil behaviour stems from original sin the alternative and correct interpretation is that dna rewards evil behavior not much less than dna rewards good behavior
dna can not programme us for detail in the pathways of our behavior as we interact with ourselves, people and things because our interactions are so complex as our cortex has become more advanced. if we were ants we could be comprehensively programmed because the smaller ant brain could not question its goals so ants just do as their dna tells them
but with our smarter brains we can and do question everything including our emotions... ...to prevent us from interrogating and scrutinizing our emotions successfully dna has set up our directive programmes with great power the result is that emotions are subtle but dominant and pervasive but elusive and our attempts at questioning our emotions are mostly napalmed at the start line
in the analysis of emotion... many respected, lengthy texts on emotion won't even define the term, and announce that they are avoiding definiton quite deliberately and proudly many texts merely ramble on without any framework of questions... ...basic questions about emotions, such as why, what, when and how
also very few people think about emotion in an organized way or with a sense of purpose most consideration of emotion is saturated right from the start by emotion itself... this is typical of poetry, music, books and films this makes good entertainment, which is just more emotion, a type of happiness, so emotion completely blasts logic off the field
in the experience of emotion... most people hate to admit their anger and are not willing to think about it after it has passed so a common emotion quietly welds itself to us like an alien
anything that a scientist analyses is generally given a defining description it is likely to be further described by: how it came into existence what purpose it has what is its composition how it reacts with the world
this does not seem to happen when emotions are discussed instead, meandering streams of opinion schools give vague inklings or just toss a semantic salad and permeate the text with newly coined vocabulary depending on which school is being read
despite the power of the emotion programme it cannot direct us in detail like it does with ants that would require too vast a capacity in permutations and combinations because our social interactions and technical sophistication are too complicated emotions can only provide reward for moving in the direction of a particular goal if the movement is not sustainable or mutual that is too bad
it requires a focus outside of emotion to notice this and correct it
that is what we all call a conscience or was once called the guardian angel in catholicism so that we are looking after others as well as ourselves
but these above secular and religious descriptions don't explain what is really going on.. the truth is that the problem is... just dna putting carrots in front of human donkeys to make dna survive
the donkey metaphor is reasonable... ...unless we stop and realize what our minds are dominated by, we will remain donkeys for dna
when really we should use our cortex, realize that emotions are a dna survival programme
and distinguish between the goals dna provides so that we only use goals that allow us to seek happiness in a sustainable and mutual way and learn that negative emotions are tools for dna survival and their dreadful power is because of dna's ruthless intent for survival which is vastly over powered for our socioeconomic world where lack of human dna survival is not yet an issue... ...there is too much dna at present