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The evolution of questioning

The query in the centre of Human evolution

pythagoreScience alone is unable to answer all the questions and, despite its development, it will never be. Claude Lévi-Strauss

Who are we?... Where we come from?... Or are we going?...

Those are schematically the major enigmatic nodes that humanity must untangle.
Myths and religions have developed the initial questions and provided their first metaphorical answers. Philosophy and science have then streamlined them; since the birth of thought, Men have drawn their arguments towards truth and light.
Three major missions
At the beginning of this chapter, we have identified three "working sites" undertaken by humanity since its birth:
1. The progressive mastery of behaviour
2. The ideal mastery of environment
3. The resolution of questioning.
In the first two chapters we studied the first 2 tasks. Let us now investigate on the progressive evolution of the questioning.

From animal to Human

Thinking, a human specificity

iconeThe answer is yes, but that was the question? Woody Allen

It suffices to observe a chimpanzee with the death of one of its own, to avoid any bad anthropocentrism. It suffices to observe an elephant facing the skull of a pachyderm to transform it into an interrogating brother and to discard any hypothesis on "the higher man", with the exclusivity of existential questioning.
This simple review commits an immense respect for other living forms. This is not yet the case, but humanity advance in this direction.

The specificities of humanity

We are not the only "existentialists" of the living world. We are not the only to be confronted with the metaphysical issues.
However, we are the only ones to ask with so much emphasis *; to provide so many answers; and to make of questioning, a philosophy, a trade, an art of living. The incredible complexity of our queries and their influence on our evolution, this well is a typical human behaviour.

* You just have to browse the Web (Wikipedia) to measure all the energy deployed by men facing their riddles. None of the areas of the world (field equipment, animal, plant, human), are blank from query and response.

 

To consider before acting

Specificity of human culture

My eyes are plunged into the bottomless abyss. From Atom to the Sun I interviewed everything. Lamartine

Questioning is at the centre of human development. It is our imperative. To be a social being, aware of being mortal induces irresistibly metaphysical questions.
The world of culture
At one point in his evolution, man landed questions and passed it to his followers. He then entered the world of culture. Mythology, religion, science and philosophy, have been born out of this questioning.
Life then took a new step in the «progressive rising of Spirit to a higher Spirit". The individual was not responding anymore to external stimuli; he was able to put a time of reflection between them and his act.
Time for reflection
There is nothing hidden that must be revealed, or secret that must be known, Matthew, X-26. This time of reflection (between stimuli and action) is quite limited in primary species (fish, reptiles); it is taking off in mammals, to flourish in humans where it continues to increase.
Millennia of thoughts stand between the teeth of the chimpanzee from the human justice, between copulation and Tantric philosophy, from sniffing to diplomacy. Of course, we have not yet reached our perfection.
Often our impulses abolish the time for analysis. Often the bad faith makes questioning unclear. Often denial to maintain or increase privileges, stops empathetic reflection to appear. Yet, without being "perfect", the human species has already a thinking cortex as well as enough intelligence to consider before acting.
We therefore possess already the necessary equipment to a conscious and environmentally friendly development.

The query and serenity

Ecstasy at the end of the questioning

kabbale arbre de vie The appearance requires art and finesse; truth, calm and simplicity. Kant

In a first step, Man uses questioning to adapt better to the world. It allows him to construct physical humanity and harnessing his animal impulses. But his destination is going far beyond technical contingencies, beyond the philosophical interest; it led humans to the magical shores of spirituality.
To the metaphysical questions, humanity continues to bring deeper answers. These answers direct our minds to the heart of things, to the soul of the creation. The nihilistic intermezzo will not change the overwhelming progress.

The search for serenity

The power of our questioning illuminates more and more the world *. The more light over Man, the more he becomes serene. By winning in tranquillity, humanity gradually turns its report to Life and Death.

* Some unanswered questions were to terrorize the prehistoric men. The Greeks brought them reassuring meanings and got released.

Many mysteries, which the Greeks were afraid of, have been informed since. Today, they do not impress many people. To answer our questions is therefore much more spiritual than what it seems. The nihilistic episode will not change the overwhelming progress.

The spiritual trick

Lightening grey area increases the serenity rate of humanity, its degree of tranquillity and philosophy, even if evolution continuously asks new questions to our minds. Resulting responses more and more calm us.
Serenity and tranquillity lead mankind little a little to happiness. Man, says philosophy, aspires to happiness. The human search, through its answers, is first and foremost, a generator of happiness.


fear to quietness

l'imagination est plus importante que le savoir.

Albert Einstein


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