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You Are Not as Human as You Think

  

Category:  Religion & Ethics

Via:  hal-a-lujah  •  2 years ago  •  12 comments

By:   Scott R. Stahlecker

You Are Not as Human as You Think
We’re more like a blob of organic matter playing host to a variety of microscopic beasts

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



Recently, two langur monkeys in India killed over 250 puppies. Locals said the monkeys captured the puppies then whisked them up to rooftops or high tree branches. Then the monkeys either threw the puppies to the ground or left them to starve to death.

Motivation? Supposedly, the langurs were killing to avenge the death of one of their own infants rumored to be killed by dogs.

Tragic? Yes. But to put this in perspective, we’re related to monkeys. However, for unknown reasons we’re capable of committing far greater dastardly deeds. The evidence of just how malicious, vicious and diabolical we are need not be elaborated upon. We’ve got thousands of years of recorded history to prove it.

The recent sequencing of the gorilla, chimpanzee and bonobo genomes confirms . . . how we are connected: chimps and bonobos in particular take pride of place as our nearest living relatives, sharing approximately 99 percent of our DNA, with gorillas trailing at 98 percent. Yet that tiny portion of unshared DNA makes a world of difference. . . .

Which makes you wonder . . . what went wrong with us? W hat the hell is in that 1-2% of our DNA that makes us capable of committing far more atrocities than our furry cousins?

More puzzling, we share more DNA with chimps than we do with the Denisovans, a branch of early humans closely related to Neanderthals. So, if langurs evolved from more primal apes, and we’ve recently evolved from a species of early humans . . . why are humans more prone to violence?

Could it be that humans are in a state of devolution?

Human nature— WHAT are we?


If the fact that a 1-2% alternation in our DNA from chimps may be partly responsible for our devolution doesn’t concern you, perhaps these stats might.

Almost 99% of the human body mass consists of six main elements; namely: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, and phosphor; 65–90% of each cell in the body is composed of water, as such, oxygen and hydrogen are among the main constituents of the human body.”

Less than half of the cells in the body are human . The rest belong to microorganisms . . . to our 30 trillion human cells, we have on average about 39 trillion microbial cells. So by that measure, we’re only about 43% human.”

If you’re wondering what those microorganisms are they consist mainly of bacteria, viruses and fungi.

The gist of this is that we’re not as human as we think we are. We’re more like a blob of organic matter playing host to a variety of microscopic beasts, which would appear as aliens from another planet were they 100 times larger.

But this may not be as frightening as what happens to our bodies once the bacteria builds civilizations within us, the parasites suck our cells dry, or the viruses kill us. Because at the end of the day, if we were to say, get lost in the desert, both us and our alien parasites would evaporate into a tiny pile of mineral dust.

So much for feeling like a spiritual being


From a biblical perspective what I’ve been describing above is a false narrative. Indeed, as far as the followers of the Abrahamic religions are concerned, most of what I’ve said is unbelievable. Especially the notion that we’re only 43% human and the rest of us is made up of microscopic aliens. That’s repugnant!

Biblically speaking, humans were created roughly 6000-10,000 years ago as perfect giants in a perfect world. They also lived upwards to 969 years like the patriarch Methuselah. But unfortunately, way back in the Garden of Eden, the first female variety of our created species sinned by eating an apple.

(Biblical tradition holds she is still the weaker and dumber of the sexes. I happen to believe guys usually have bigger biceps, but gals usually have more common sense.)

Anyways—and this is where Christianity turns into a theological quagmire—God punished our first parents, cursed the earth, and set Lucifer free, thus unleashing evil into the world. As the spiritual theory goes, mankind as well as planet earth have been in a progressive state of decline ever since. Let’s blame it on a devil!

Which is pretty pessimistic when you think about it. 

Now, the degree to which believers can merge these theological traditions with evolution and other scientific data can’t be speculated. This is an individual choice on the part of believers because it all comes down to the level of mental gymnastics they are comfortable with practicing.

At one end of the spectrum are the fundamentalists, who posit that every word in the Bible is inerrant and must be followed to the T . These individuals are apt to spend a great deal of time in the gym—or the playground of their minds—working on their routines. Which is how to keep believing what they do when all evidence seems to point to the contrary.

At the other end of the spectrum are the believers who vacation in Laodicea and attend one of its local churches. In Laodicea everything—the climate, the waters, and one’s convictions—are lukewarm. Not too warm and not too cold. In Laodicea a believer is free to explore the merits of spiritual growth and skip all the biblical details. Which are those pesky texts they suspect no reasonable person should believe anyway.

Human nature- WHO are we?


Perhaps the question we should be asking is who are we not what we are?

From a scientific standpoint what we are could fit in a gallon sized Ziplock baggie. This is disconcerting. Our physical bodies may condense down to a bag full of minerals and such, but where does the essence of ourselves go after we die? Like our soul, our spirit, our personalities, our consciousness.

Religion may be going through an existential crisis at the moment, but at least it’s been pondering the question above for eons. For as far as religions go, no two are alike nor does any disciple among them believe the same things. Which is to say, they’ve all been barking up the wrong tree, but at least religions are looking for an explanation of who we are rather than just what we are.

We will not solve the mystery of discovering the essence of consciousness today, but I can at least leave you with something to think about.

If we are only 43% human this means that 57% of our body consists of parasites, viruses, fungi, bacteria etc. We may be inclined to discount these living creatures who inhabit our bodies as insignificant, but collectively they could be thinking about how insignificant we are. After all, they outnumber us. The totality of their existence within our material makeup is greater than the totality of our humanity.

We must also consider the possibility that these creatures are conscious, sentient beings. Insomuch that they inhabit our minds and guts they play a huge role in establishing our own sense of self. In some sense our consciousness is merged within their consciousness. The life force that drives our ambitions, and compels us to find a spiritual purpose to our lives, also aligns with their own desires.


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Hal A. Lujah
Professor Guide
1  seeder  Hal A. Lujah    2 years ago

If we are only 43% human this means that 57% of our body consists of parasites, viruses, fungi, bacteria etc. We may be inclined to discount these living creatures who inhabit our bodies as insignificant, but collectively they could be thinking about how insignificant we are. After all, they outnumber us. The totality of their existence within our material makeup is greater than the totality of our humanity.

We must also consider the possibility that these creatures are conscious, sentient beings. Insomuch that they inhabit our minds and guts they play a huge role in establishing our own sense of self. In some sense our consciousness is merged within their consciousness. The life force that drives our ambitions, and compels us to find a spiritual purpose to our lives, also aligns with their own desires.

Something to ponder.  It reminds me of the frequently parroted notion that a virus wants to survive, and therefore will mutate to a less lethal version to prolong its existence in nature.  

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Expert
1.1  Gordy327  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @1    2 years ago
..If we are only 43% human this means that 57% of our body consists of parasites, viruses, fungi, bacteria etc.

Go up in scale and humans might be like viruses or parasites to the planet. Earth is just a "cell" in the "body" of the universe.

It reminds me of the frequently parroted notion that a virus wants to survive, and therefore will mutate to a less lethal version to prolong its existence in nature

That's similar to how the first multicellular organisms evolved. Although, that was more symbiotic relationship.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
Professor Principal
1.2  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @1    2 years ago
Something to ponder.  It reminds me of the frequently parroted notion that a virus wants to survive, and therefore will mutate to a less lethal version to prolong its existence in nature.  

Viruses don't actually think. They are not living or dead. They are delivery packages of DNA. Through mutation and survival, they will evolve into a less lethal variant. After all, without hosts, they stop existing too. 

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Guide
1.2.1  seeder  Hal A. Lujah  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.2    2 years ago

Of course.  It is just a layman’s frequently parroted notion that attempts to answer a complex question with a simplistic explanation.

 
 
 
Ender
Professor Principal
2  Ender    2 years ago

Probably not a typical view but I don't like monkeys. They get on my nerves.

The only ones I like are the gorillas. They seem mostly peaceful and look like they are contemplating.

Anyway, what I think is most life on earth is symbiotic in some form or another.

Generally humans tend to think they are unique and above the fray, when that is not the case.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
3  Trout Giggles    2 years ago
From a scientific standpoint what we are could fit in a gallon sized Ziplock baggie.

Anyone remember the Star Trek episode where  the crew was held hostage by these people that could reduce the human body to a salt lick. That statement I copied reminded me of that

 
 
 
Ender
Professor Principal
3.1  Ender  replied to  Trout Giggles @3    2 years ago

One thing I learned from Star Trek, never go on a mission with them...

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
3.1.1  Trout Giggles  replied to  Ender @3.1    2 years ago

Not if you're wearing a red shirt

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Expert
3.1.2  Gordy327  replied to  Ender @3.1    2 years ago
One thing I learned from Star Trek, never go on a mission with them..

Never put your higher ranking officers in one shuttle either.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
Professor Principal
4  Perrie Halpern R.A.    2 years ago
If we are only 43% human this means that 57% of our body consists of parasites, viruses, fungi, bacteria etc.

We are 100% human from a DNA standpoint. We have symbiotic relationships with these other organisms as do all animals and plants on the earth.

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Guide
4.1  seeder  Hal A. Lujah  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @4    2 years ago

I’m no pathologist, but it seems that if you remove a human bone it will be 100% human from a DNA standpoint.  If you remove a human intestine it will not be 100% human DNA, since it relies on non-human symbiotic organisms to function.  If you removed all of the non-human symbiotic organisms from a human they would quickly perish, and what was removed would be 0% human DNA.

We’ve all heard the strange medical cases where the use of a strong antibiotic has killed off someone’s gut micro biome and made the person very ill, but they were brought back to health by literally introducing other peoples’ poop into their gut.  Breath mint, anyone?

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Expert
4.1.1  Gordy327  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @4.1    2 years ago
If you remove a human intestine it will not be 100% human DNA, since it relies on non-human symbiotic organisms to function.

I assume you are referring to cellular mitochondria? While they do have their own DNA, they reside inside normal cells in a symbiotic relationship. Mitochondria were a big "jump start" to the evolution of more complex organisms. Organisms such as bacteria residing outside the cells and tissues can have a beneficial or harmful effect on tissue, depending on the bacteria involves. Normal gut flora generally aids in digestion and immunity. 

We’ve all heard the strange medical cases where the use of a strong antibiotic has killed off someone’s gut micro biome and made the person very ill, but they were brought back to health by literally introducing other peoples’ poop into their gut.  

It's called a fecal transplant. Sounds disgusting, sure. But it does help respawn ones normal gut bacteria. Usually people who have undergone chemo and radiation therapy lose their gut bacteria (Radiation sucks), along with damage to bone marrow, which produces red and white blood cells.

Breath mint, anyone?

More like a mouth wash enema. Lol

 
 

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