The superteam: Human empathy, technology, civilization, and social media
When he declares the death of god, Nietzsche says that humans have outgrown the shackles of gods and mythologies through our evolution in knowledge and science.
Humans discovered our evolutionary origins, which made the concept of god unnecessary. He did not believe that god was ever real, but that this human invention was no longer necessary to explain our existence or behavior.
The important question he asks is basically "What do we do now as the first creatures to gain knowledge that god does not exist?" Anciently, religion served a function, providing moral and ethical infrastructure for human society, and something must replace it if we are to continue to prosper.
You can rephrase Nietzsche's difficult question: "Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?" Interpreted, he is saying, "We must become creators (gods) if we are to survive without metaphysical gods."
We must become gods in the sense that we govern our own moral existence. There is no supernatural judge or jury, so we must manage ourselves.
The connected evolution of human technology and empathy
Technology originated in fire, the wheel, and stone wedges. In the past several hundred years, science and technology worked together with writers and readers to preserve information and pass it on to the next generation, technology improving exponentially with the knowledge of science transmitted in written language.
Empathy is more ancient, primordial, and natural, evolving in humans slowly over thousands of years, part of the intricate neural networks that adapted to the circumstances and environment of early homonids.
Empathy is the capacity to feel what another creature experiences, and because of this human superpower, society, culture, and civilization evolved. Humans feel what others experience, and it connects us to one another.
Anciently empathy evolved in monogamous relationships and traditional families, then small groups of families, small villages, and civilizations that thrived around fertile rivers.
Our ancestors shared knowledge and technology because of intimate connections created by empathy. Civilizations grew and progressed hand in hand with technology and because of the superpower - empathy.
Cultures evolved with increasing speed, and social media represents the current culmination of human technology and empathy through the internet.
Nietzche looked into the future to start us thinking about adaptation
We live and blog in a world with unlimited possibilities to act and write in kindness because empathy tells us that this benefits the most people across the globe. For the first time, we are citizens of a global civilization, and when you blog you enter that intricate network, influencing with your writing.
Social media connects your blog with the world, and you are creating the tablets that Nietzsche describes, as we emerge in a world of creators without god.
Companions, the creator seeks, not corpses, not herds and believers. Fellow creators, the creator seeks -- those who write new values on new tablets. Companions, the creator seeks, and fellow harvesters; for everything about him is ripe for the harvest.
The death of the concept of "god" creates a social and moral burden for humans, who must nurture empathy and altruism in order to thrive. Social media and the internet are reconstructing the cultural infrastructure left empty with god's death.
God is dead. What replaces her?
"God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? ... Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?"
Where religion and imagined gods once connected humans in social networks, real science and technology link humans today. Social media and the technology that makes the internet possible are the cultural glue that binds us together, in close and real networks
Bloggers, and all humans, are connected through social media and empathy, and the imagined spiritual connection through religion or metaphysics remains obsolete, dead. Nietzsche says we forge new connections as creators, taking over the role of god.
The internet and social media reconnect humans for the first time since god's death
Let me blow your mind with some ideas of Friedrich Nietzsche. Don't let his ginormous moustache and the title "philosopher" scare you. His ideas will enrich your understanding of the modern world.
He died, crazy, in 1900, suffering through mental illness through much of his productive life, but his view of modern society is prophetic. Nietzsche's ideas are at the heart of this post about blogging and social media.
Nietzsche's view of the modern world and his forward thinking may have saved humanity from self destruction by preparing us for the absence of religion. See how he captures the modern moral position of humanity in The Gay Science, the section titled "The Madman:"
He invites us to create new values and stories, independently and collectively. He specifically invites writers of "new tablets," and bloggers represent the ultimate creators, connected more concretely through technology and social media than previously with metaphysics.
What does this mean?
You exist in a pivotal moment in the history of the earth, with more knowledge and ability to act globally than ever before. As you write your blog and broadcast it in social media, you have an undefined but infinite power for good by using empathy in your writing.
Remember this broad scope of blogging as you write and perhaps think that you are wasting your time or that no one is listening. You are infinitely powerful as you string words together on your pages.
Be a creator. Blog with this knowledge and you can change the world, real ways. You are helping to evolve and adapt humanity as you blog and use social media, civilization evolving faster than ever.
Listen to this engaging NPR report on similar ideas, "Modern Humans Still Evolving, and Faster Than Ever." Just the play button below and make sure your volume is up. It lasts approximately 20 minutes.
You might also enjoy: What do you write in your blog? How is it important to you? Do you feel the global connection of social media? Please let us know in the comments that follow.
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