Thursday, June 18, 2020

The Final Solution: Sum Ergo Cogito?

As perpetual wannabees human beings place great store on their own consciousness of themselves. Hamlet might have been one of the most entitled characters in theater history. In his famous soliloquy he’s giving himself points for thinking and some might say justifying the excesses of his behavior by displaying the creativity of his mind or madness. But is it possible that however much an achievement consciousness might be that it’s only structurally different from what say insects produce. After all ants and bees have their own aristocratic orders which undoubtedly preceded the advent of man. Who's to say that thought is superior to hive mind? In terms of productivity, you might place your bets on an ant colony, even if there are few entomologists who could point to the advent of concepts like equal rights and democracy in the internecine world where bole weevils and termites create their infernal machine. It’s as consoling to apotheosize reason as it was to think of the earth, as being square, or at the center of a universe around which the sun rotated. Is it possible than homo sapiens are not so smart and are even more lost (and in fact instinctually handicapped) than their cousins in the animal world, precisely because they have such a high opinion of their own capabilities?

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