50-TAMING THE ANS

When Christianity was created in 325CE on the premise that we were godlike creatures, not animals, it did everything it could to make us ignore our ANS. Our Judeo-Christian world was built in a scientific vacuum, and if science plays such a large part in our world today, it’s thanks to the bankers who created the Bank of England in 1694, which allowed them to invest in R&D at will. The world of plenty being the result of those investments, today, many of us completely ignore that we must still answer to our ANS on a daily basis like all the other animals on earth. It is almost impossible to put ourselves in the situation of the Andes Crash Disaster where normal well-educated people were forced to resort to cannibalism in order to survive.

We are genetically programmed to go to extremes to survive, and we will eat our fellow humans, drink our urine, and have sex in most violent ways in order to do so. In order to survive, we have a few minutes to get air, a few days to get water, a month or so to get food, and a few years to reproduce, and thanks to our ANS, we are constantly reminded of that, and we must consciously respond to it on an ongoing basis. Fortunately, because we live in a world of plenty, we are rarely challenged by hunger and thirst, for all we have to do is grab a bag of chips and a pop as we go about our daily activities. The only worry we have is that of becoming obese. As for urination and defecation, since early 20th century, there are toilets all over the place, and we take those bodily functions in stride. Of the five bodily functions that demand our constant attention, hunger, thirst, defecation, urination and sexual drive, the latter creates the most havoc in our lives because it is the only one we haven’t learned to deal with. Today, because it only takes a few hours of work a week to ensure our survival, where, not so long ago, finding food, water and shelter was an around the clock ordeal, we have a lot of time on our hands, and we spend an inordinately amount of that time dealing with our sex drive and everything relating to it. Needless to say, it creates quite an imbalance in our lives, and it’s causing us a lot of grief.

We started using tools around 3 million years ago (mya), and by the time we mastered the art of fire making, around 1mya, we were still hunters and gatherers. The ability to make tools and fire was a considerable advance in our evolution, but it was only when we decided to settle down, some 20 thousand years ago (kya) that we started being the humans we are today. That’s when we unwittingly started to respond to our ANS in an organized way. We began planting and growing food in order to store it and avoid famine down the road. We built shelters close to a good water supply, on land where things grew, and realizing that there was strength in numbers, we started associating with other groups.

As hamlets grew, humans soon realized that they had to do something about their body waste. Stench and pestilence had to be dealt with if they planned on living together. As wanderers, it was something they had never thought about. But now, they had to think not only about growing food and having a steady supply of clean water, but also of getting rid of human waste that fouled their living space. However, it was only until very recently, at the very end of the 19th century, that thirst, hunger, urination and defecation, our main ANS imperatives, were dealt with in a systematic way. That was when electricity made tap water and water treatment plants common place, and when grocery stores abounded.

We may have learned to deal with thirst, hunger, urination and defecation, but we definitely haven’t regarding sex. Over the millennia, instead of learning to control our sex drive, we gave it free rein. When we started growing food some 20kya, life got easier, and since sex was a source of intense pleasure, the males did what came naturally by putting more emphasis on having sex. And the stronger and wilier males, realizing that dominating the physically weaker females, whether in estrus or not, was a way of experiencing sexual pleasure, did just that.

Prior to our breaking the time barrier, the alpha males dominated the lower order males, and the alpha females dominated the lower order females in order to establish hierarchy within the group. The alpha male serviced all the females when they were in estrus, hence willing, and everybody was happy except for the frustrated lower order males, for being deprived of reproduction privileges meant they were deprived of sexual pleasure. Since sexual pleasure is Mother Nature’s way of forcing us to reproduce, and since they had no access to the females, they were often irritated. But after we left the world of natural selection, the lower order males found ways to outwit the alpha and started physically dominating the females in order to get sexual pleasure. It was a complete reversal of fortune for the female gender. Now, all the lower order males dominated the females whom they treated as sex objects, reproducers and field hands. The female ceased to be the equal partner of the male, and we still see the remnants of that in our society today. It could be said that intelligence is what caused this mess, and only by using intelligence can we re-establish a true social equilibrium.

However, things did get a little better for women 5kya. As leisure time became more plentiful, there were more idle males, and they developed reading and writing, which in turn gave rise to religions. It was still very much a macho world, but the threat of bad gods who were aware of the males’ atrocious behavior and could send them to hell or some such place after death, made them sit up and listen. When the Christian religion was created in 325CE, it started enforcing the concept of monogamous unions, and thereon in, the males had to put their penis in check when they went into society, although they could still do what they wanted at home.

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