Humanity had natural, emergent direction and purpose in the Pleistocene. Direction was determined by very simple selective pressures. Humanity either acted or it died, and life as a result was relatively straightforward … or at least for those who survived. Then the Holocene happened, continental sheet ice melted, waters flooded lowlands and humanity was compressed into an ecology of intraspecies competition. This gave almost linear causal rise to agriculture, cities, states, tyrannies, slavery, laws, taxes, animal selection, infectious disease, war, conquest, the racist instinct and religion.
All of the above are contrived solutions to the existential void left by the change from Pleistocene to Holocene. Humanity was forcibly shoehorned in to becoming a predatory species onto itself. To cope, nature had to ‘hack’ its anthropic neurology, literally program itself ‘on the fly’. Much of this new human operating system is based on violence, force, tyranny and lying. Very little of it will last – things like mathematics, philosophy, science, art, technology. The struggle of our age is to exorcise the redundant or pathological coping mechanisms – the demons – of our ascension from being a contemptible and brutal animal in to becoming something we could all aspire to. This is the essential battle for the soul humanity and there is a real possibility this battle will fail.