First off, thanks for answering the question!!! The idea of reasoned discourse is one of the things that bring me back to the internet: I wish it happened more often.
Second, sorry that it took me so long to respond. I don't really have a good excuse so I will not prattle on with a lame one.
While I wish it were true that, if a nation is at peace, that there is peace in the cities, neighbors, homes and heart; it just isn't so. I think the situation with the
This was by no means limited to the citizens of the
Just because something is something is unattainable, however, does not mean it is not worth striving towards. On the contrary, this is one of the things it means to be human! As a people we will never reach peace, enlightenment, etc, but the process of striving – of trying to better oneself, is the human condition.
I think that many people will agree with your opinion that we as a people are raising a more violent generation or that humans are generally destructive. But I would ask: compared to what? Recall that previous generations have given us World War 1, World War 2, centuries of conflict in
Compared to many species, human beings are incredibly cooperative and peaceful. Lions, wolves, etc. will all regularly fight, injure or kill each other. The same is true of many herbivores and sea-dwelling mammals. Conflict and even what one might consider "war" is by no means limited to humanity among primates – even Jane Goodall has observed fatal conflicts among chimpanzees.
[Sorry about the vague references – if anyone actually cares leave me a comment or send me an email and I'll come up with them.]
Now compare this to humanity. We live in incredibly dense, complicated surroundings that requiring intricate cooperation and yet we survive and even flourish. While violence makes the news, consider how much trust is required for a simple traffic intersection to function: there is nothing stopping all the drivers from ramming each other except their willingness to cooperate.
So I think the Tao chant that you mentioned is an idea rather than a goal. Never the less, I think it is an ideal that is worthy and that people should strive towards. I don't think that the generation we are raising is more violent than previous ones – I think human beings in general are peaceful and cooperative.
In closing, given my optimistic outlook and generally amiable disposition, I can't believe I'm writing this. Perhaps this is a sign of future senility, but I do see more hope then despair when I look at us.Technorati: BYBS, MsDemmie, Tao, Ideal, Human Condition