Philo
Sophos
·org

philosophy is for everyone
and not just philosophers

philosophers should know lots
of things besides philosophy


Feature articles

PhiloSophos knowledge base

Philosophical Connections

Pathways to Philosophy programs

University of London BA

Pathways web sites

Philosophy lovers gallery

GVKlempner: complete videos

PhiloSophos home

Pathways to Philosophy

Dehumanisation of Humanity:
Zero Ground

by Munayem Mayenin


The most important of all tasks before us, is to begin our study with the assumption that we will, at every way and perspective possible, try our utmost to make best use of our faculty of rationality so that whatever we see and show are to be the best of humanity possible. For we take the view that the best that we as human beings could claim to have is our ability to think and think rationally, just as we take the premise that what differentiates us from being simply animal is this rationality. All animals are genetically and physiologically capable of feeling emotions to a varying degree but most, except humankind, lack the quality of rationality. Thence they act out their lives and live it following their emotions. A scared dog would essentially bark or run away where a scared human will react differently. We have not only emotions but have their varied forms and coupled with multiple complexities, and not only are we able to recognise them but also control them to a certain degree.

How we manage to do that is an essential question. We do that by the utilisation of rationality. That is why we say that we feel with the heart but run our life not by following the heart or its responses; rather we rationalise and make decisions and then follow or execute them. That is what we propose to take with us in this journey of analysing ourselves and the systems in which we find ourselves imprisoned. However, our overwhelming difficulty is that the system we have developed does not permit us the opportunity to afford to use this faculty, and thus creates a series of problems and difficulties one after another since there are other instruments which influence everything we do and we end up not only losing ourselves and losing control but also the ability to even see or understand it.

So, here we stand, at a point of society or civilisation that claims to be civilised, which fosters, nurtures, upholds and advances the best of humanity, namely justice and fairness, equality, human rights, liberty and most of all the rule of law or democracy and still we see, or feel the majority of our fellow members of this civilisation disagreeing that we have any of these things that the system claims that we have. To a very basic level we are hungry, we are poor, we are uneducated, we are homeless, we are jobless and we do not have access to any kind of Medicare. Moreover, we cannot even recognise that we have been made personless; we lack so many important and invaluable items, so that without them we can hardly be called human beings at all: things like being able to develop the capability to use rationality, act with morality, live with equality while enjoying liberty, in short, to live and interact with a purpose. In a situation like ours it is the most hard of all jobs to endeavour and try to analyse the whole of so-called civilisation and try to find out why things are forced to be the way they are; why, instead of supporting the progress and enhancement of humankind, it is putting up all sorts of possible and impossible barriers and obstacles to our being or progressing at all.

In order to avoid any dispute or controversy we have to decide the beginning point of our study and take a point to start, namely to point out the beginning of humankind. We would like to take that point as the 'zero ground' where things began. We must accept this that things do not begin from one, they begin from a state of nothingness or a point of no numerical or mathematical significance and then onwards as progress is made the number line continues to count. We do not think that until humankind reached slavery they had actually started making any progress with regards to the zero starting point.

If we then take the journey with that group of our predecessors out on this planet trying to live a life how would we find them? We must warn our readers that we must leave all the so called clothing of civilisation as well as the filthy prejudices we have been made to digest, such as primitive people, uneducated bunch, barbarians, uncivilised, lacking of modern way of thinking and being unable to recognise the sign of Microsoft or unable to eat McDonald's fries or drink Coke. It is paramount for us to be able to understand how those people made their way into life and left their marks on this beautiful planet and since then how continuously we continued to destroy and corrupt this planet and along with it brought about all sorts of evil for our kind.

That ideal 'Humanity' holds light for us and would show us the way in which we should have been living. Let us begin our investigation of their way of living. Those people are the pioneers of humanity and they were on a planet that was uninhabited and they treated it as a gift to them so that they could live on it; and they lived on it, leaving it, if not better then not worse to their children. They did not buy the planet, they did not fight any war to occupy it. They merely found themselves on the planet and we could only take the view that they treated it as well as their own life to be a gift from a superior being. They respected both their own lives and the planet they lived on. There were no homeless persons, there were no jobless persons, there were no persons without Medicare, they did not have rich nor did they have any poor. They had no one who was mentally ill or psychopathically oriented. They had no crime nor had they have any criminals. They would not kill anything the way we do.

They lived as part of the planet as an organic part of it. They lived as friends of nature in harmony. They lived like fishes live in water without disturbing it, they lived like snakes in the jungle, they lived like the bees or butterflies without disturbing the flowers. They lived like the mole under the ground. They lived like the eagles of the sky. These animals live in nature as part of it without challenging it or tampering with it or manipulating it or destroying it. They did not have to do any of this as they believed that they were part of the planet and without harmony with it there can not be peace in oneself. This is like the infant who has had an argument with his mother and who, no matter who says what, can not find mental peace, even if he pretends that he is peaceful. That is where we had left our mental harmony, our peace and emotional well being.

Our predecessors never lived in irrationality. They had the highest degree of liberty and they held the uttermost equality on this planet. They were moral in their way of living. And when we say moral we do not mean a puritan morality. They had a purpose in living and they did not lose 'life in living'. That was where we had humanity. That society was the one that was there to enable humanity to be. Their society enabled them, enhanced them and they lived to the full and they left the world better than they had received it. But it is us who destroyed all this. This is not imagination, what we are talking about. That early well being we had acquired is still helping us to hang on and not all become insane. All prisoners would go mad had they have no earlier life of liberty to a certain degree and had they no hope of being able to come back to something better than prison.

In that society they had no government or state as we know it, nor did they have any such thing as law the way we know it or view it. They did not have police, courts, security services or royalty: yet they managed to hold onto the best of humanity that we only could dream of having.

How was it possible? All that was possible because they had natural justice which now we try to enshrine through declarations of rights or declarations of conventions convened so that we can feel good about ourselves as doing something. My father used to say he who needs to swear is definitely lying. They were equal and thus they had liberty. A human being can live few minutes without air yet with human dignity, but he can not live a second without liberty maintaining his human dignity, and unless human beings are equal to each other they can not enjoy liberty at all. Thus those people had these two essential elements that kept humanity in being.They had other paramount items of humanity: they had rationality as they were the only humans who were able to exercise rationality to the fullest in everything they did and thus whatever rational things they did, they did morally. Moral they were and thus they had a purpose. With all these they had the system and apparatus to support their humanity and to enhance, improve and maintain continued progression of it.

As soon as that state of affairs was changed we started to degrade ourselves. Still trying our best to maintain the good qualities of humanity, we continue failing it, bending it, manipulating it, tampering with it, destroying it and finally we have been successful in dehumanising the whole of humanity and here we stand with a dehumanised humanity that can not even be. The whole system of civilisation is now standing like an all round death wall of humanity that keeps killing us every second of our life until we physically die. In effect, in this civilisation we are only allowed to a certain limited degree to be able to live like human beings, which is in early childhood. As we cross the threshold of that tiny and brief childhood the system starts manipulating us and turns us into dehumanised biological entities so that not only are we unable to develop and be as human beings but also become incapable of seeing it.

This zero ground of humanity can be seen in every country of the world. In a generalised sense the east of the planet maintained that zero point longer than the west. Even now at the stage of overwhelming globalised capitalist world civilisation still some cultures in the east and some tribal nations in the west, which the civilisation tried and is trying its best to murder, show signs of efforts of maintaining those values.

Still now in countries and communities where capitalism entered late with its overwhelming power of manipulation and destruction we see better humanity than in the advanced capitalist societies. That is because humanity still has not yet been dehumanised.

© Munayem Mayenin
London, 2002

E-mail: Mmayenin@aol.com