Our Inner Struggle Defines Us As Humans: Edward O. Wilson On Morality
It's the dynamic of individual versus group selection that he believes defines how we interact and, in turn, defines our moral struggle. This inner conflict, he also adds, is what makes us distinctly human. "This inner conflict between altruism and selfishness is the human condition," he says. "And it is very creative and probably the source of our striving, our inventiveness and imagination. It's that eternal conflict that makes us unique." Our political ideologies reflect this struggle, says Wilson. "Once in a while, humans form societies that emphasize the group, for example societies with Marxist ideology," he notes. "But the opposite is also true. In other societies the individual is everything. Politically, that would be the Republican far right."
Delving into the reasons we do the things we do is an important component to better understanding human nature. In his ground breaking research and keynotes, Wilson draws parallels between humans and other creatures on the planet to paint a detailed picture of life on Earth. If we better understand where we came from and how we evolved, we can better predict how things will change in the future.