Thursday, April 5

History of culture

I read this from here.

The entire history of culture is dominated by an effort to become as independent as possible from the whims of nature.  The more developed a civilization is, the more an individual is protected from nature and natural influences and knows how to create around him a constant or controllable environment to his liking.  Our menu is no longer dependent on harvests, the presence of wild game, or the seasons….

Nowadays we usually perceive unspoiled nature as an ideal of beauty and purity, but most Western-type people would not survive for long in nature’s untouched locations.  It is not a world of people.

It was fascinating. Just think about it and we are ok with this. We like our civilisation around us. But once I read about a quote, “civilisation is just 3 days away from barbarism”. Let me explain. In our interconnected world, in our civilised worlds, in our massive supply chain connected world, we have everything instantly. We have water on tap. We have food in the fridge and if that runs out, we can just pop to the shop and get everything or get it ordered in. We can get a hotel room or house very simply.

But all this is very finely balanced and this entire edifice is very finely made, with there being significant points of failure. For example, the entire country has gone into a mild panic and is purchasing petrol like muppets simply because some lorry drivers threatened to go on strike. If say 2-3 ports are devastated, then the country will come to a grinding halt. The water supply here can be literally turned off by a suitable application of some bits in some bits. Our civilisation is getting to a point that truly independent living is difficult. Put it in another way, if a hurricane comes across and devastation is across a variety of point, society as we know it collapses, within 3 days. That’s how long it takes for your home supplies of water, food, shelter, wax candles, money, etc. etc. to run out. Generally. Points to ponder.

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