Friday, March 16, 2012

Just Leave Socialism to Ants Alone


I have yet to find a capitalist ant, a self-proclaimed socialist ant, an ant bureaucrat, or an ant buddha. 

In the sacred unwritten book of Ant's Socialism, the following passage can be found: "For all kinds of ants, the following edict is to be seen as spontaneous: No individual ant or group of ants must utilize, monopolize, or limit in themselves any means of food production in all for the purpose of profit. All activity must be solely for the purpose of fulfilling each colony's survival demands and all of the ants' daily needs."

Humans are really dumbfounded how to achieve that. The ants already did it. I am baffled what kind of social theory might the ants have used to reach their current state of antly affairs. Humans must be envious of the ants, don't you think? Poor intelligent humans.

The Essence of Socialism

Being true to what socialism really means, and I mean the purest form of it, my tongue carries no bud of distaste to it. It is the pro-capitalism fanatics, those with insufficient and dishonest understanding of what they are fighting against, who are the ones who bring bad color to supposedly stain-proof socialism.  Why did I say insufficient and dishonest? Because as opposed to the popular idea that if it is government then it entails socialism. It is not. USSR, though labeled Socialist did not fail because of socialism. It failed because of the stupid and anti-ant idea that  government is the only way to achieve the goal. USSR failed because it tried to utilize the very same strategy which was warned not to be used - the monopoly of control or Government. Socialism can't fail. It's the machinery employed, thought to be the way to achieve the goal, that eventually breaks down.

The rationally ill-equipped capitalism subscribers are not  the only party to blame why socialism seems to be a bad idea. The substantial portion of fault must be put unto the people who were so excited at bringing in the anticipated euphoria of communal harmony as envisioned to be attained through socialism. 

Contrary to popular belief of Marx diehard followers that it was Marx who had ignited socialism to take-off, I suspect Marx himself must be the number one to blame why socialism reached it very much opposed status today. He tried to rush everything, didn't he? What he did is to entice the proletariat, or the working class, to rise in arms against the bourgeois, the middle class and wealthy, by saying they were exploited by the latter and it is the right of the workers, the alleged creators of wealth, to take back what they made believed they own. As a result, those  laborers, who of course majority of them lacked the wisdom Marx might have, can only manage to carry on up to the point of having a trigger-happy mentality. So everyone ended-up choking each other while hypocritically thinking it was all for equality and freedom. 

Ants versus Humans

So what separated the ants from humans? What is the distinctive quality ants have or might not have why they attained the spontaneous order of their society? In comparison, what do humans have and might not have that makes it difficult, if not impossible, to emulate the ants?

I came to see the reason, I believe. But it is a rather partially disinteresting thought. But on the other side, if really sought to attain, would be the key to the promises of socialism. And it is the "elimination of the intellect". Sounds so uninteresting. But wait. Be careful not to impress upon self that such intellect be erased in the literal sense by subjecting each human to some kind of genetic manipulation, a surgery, or anything that could render the intellect incapable of creative activities. 

I am not inclined to believe ants, or any specie, lack rationalization. If I do so, I fell to the trap of making a bias based on egotism. Humans must not claim monopoly of such life activity. The thing is that all other specie have their own brand of rationalization, in a degree by which can only be thought to exist (or not exist) in terms of human perspective. Again, I am not saying that our capacity to discern relativity of ideas must be altered to the brand of intellect the ants have. What I was thinking is that the ants may show us the hint how they are sustaining their harmonious social activity.

Or maybe I was wrong all along? Humans have been treating every activity in terms of the relationship between the doer and what is being done. The statement that it is the ants themselves that sustain their society through their social activities is perhaps a confusion.  In this particular case, it is thought that the ants (the doer) does the activity of sustaining their society. But apparently, treating the ants in this manner would post a problem for humans. For if it is true that ants are the rationalizer, the synchronizer of every ant activity, this must entail that a centrally-acting social mechanism is in place, perhaps their brand of government or a union, or perhaps a collective mindset is already there. However, is this not the very same strategy humans tried to emulate but  unfortunately a failure everytime? In a sense, the notion that it is the ants themselves that does all the ant stuff to sustain their society is the single mistake underlying the failure of humans to copy the ants seemingly harmonious social arrangement.

The human egoic tendency might say, oh ants don't think. Ants don't ask. I don't agree. As like humans, ants must posses their own mental box too. Ants do think within their mental box. As for the robot, I guess they have their own sets of vocabularies too. Meaning, it shouldn't be discounted that ants have their own  consciousness and they necessarily operate within it. Humans are only privy to human thoughts as ants unto their own thoughts.

Now, if rationalization is that necessary (or not necessary), and that ants somehow uses (or not uses) it in a way puzzling to humans, what remedy do humans have to arrive at the same arrangement the ants have reached?

The Elimination of the Intellect

Going back to the "elimination of the intellect" I mentioned earlier, what kind of elimination could that be? Since I already mentioned I was not talking about the literal destruction of it, how to eliminate it by not actually eliminating it? That's a paradox.

Human mind is both the way and the wall. The problem would be how to break the wall and remain as the way. Ants might have already broken the wall, or perhaps there was no wall to break from the start, and as a result now exhibits spontaneous order in their society. But if there was an instance when they did break the wall, how did they do it?

Now, what does it mean if I say mind is a wall? Mind has this idea of itself, the ego. Ego is the personal identity formed through mental programming since childhood. It includes name, race, education, etc. With all these combined, it forms a unique personality that every individual carries everyday. Ego is the ID, a dog-tag by which each man is seen and counted as one, the stand-alone self. And since ego is the accumulation of ideas and mind as bundle of same thoughts that formed the ego, it would be appropriate to say Mind and Ego is the same. Now the wall exists. The wall of self-identity, the ego, the mind as a boundary impressed in in itself that needs to be protected at all costs from any circumstances that might threaten the integrity of this identity.

And what is the way? The way would be for the mind to recognize that the ego as itself, or the self-identity as itself is nothing but just bunches of idea of the past. The ability to see it in this way would render the self-identity as nothing but an illusory wall. Having recognize that it is so, the wall is already broken and what remains is the way.

The Buddha Way

When the way, the very same way the Buddha taught for ages, is recognized there is no more sense to protect the self-identity and everyone would come to a place of effortless social harmony. And because this is the state of spontaneous order, in which "you" is viewed as "I" and "them" is viewed as "us", the capitalists mindset to make profits is impossible to exist. Economic activity would then be only for the purpose of fulfilling minimal survival needs. Same is true with all other individuals will no longer be motivated to use  government, or a group or a control of power is necessary to impose harmony. Everything would come as natural as the ant's way.

However, for the meantime that people are yet to learn the wisdom of Buddha, the selfless self, my suggestion would be to leave socialism to the ants alone.
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