Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Nature, Nurture and Urbanisation

26 August 2016


The Nature versus Nurture debate is often a scientific and/or dilemma with respect to accountability and responsibility. In my 25 August 2016 blog, I mentioned Nature and Nurture in a different context: their role within the 7 Belief systems (eg, gravity, temptation).

I think, feel and believe that it’s safe to say that humans view Nature today as everything on planet Earth except for humans.

Humans fear the Forces of Nature: Darkness (eg, no sight), Earth (eg, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions ), Fire (eg, forest fires), Ice (eg, ice age), Light (eg, skin cancer), Lightning (eg, electrocution), Water (eg, drought, floods), Wind (eg, hurricanes). (picture source)

For thousands of years, several civilisations built large cities that subsequently were deserted and often for unknown reasons (eg, Cahokia). By 2050, nearly 70% of humanity will live and work in global cities (eg, FT). It seems that urbanisation has finally won from Nature. Urbanisation may even be the human answer to their fear of (the forces of) Nature

Urbanisation has also had a profound impact on Nurture. The way parents raise children (upbringing), the way humans teach knowledge (education), and the way we interact with other humans at home/school/sports/work (social environment) has all changed following urbanisation. I think, feel and believe that our evolutionary link with Nature is largely broken.

The few known studies on urbanisation and its impact on the human mind paint a dire picture. Please see my 23 May 2016 blog. It’s hardly a surprise as caged animals (eg, chicken, pigs, and even a zoo) already demonstrate irritation, frustration, anger and fighting from being forced to cohabit in crowded places. Urbanisation feels somehow similar as “caging” humans.

Urbanisation is not only a consequence of a human fear of (the forces of) Nature but also a human love for anything that we can create ourselves (Nurture) and shields us from Nature (eg, airco, electricity, food, heating, houses, lights, smells, sounds). Having animals as pets might be our only concession to Nature although some pets are treated like humans.

Perhaps Urbanisation is even the crucial link between Nature & Nurture and Temptation, as mentioned earlier in my blogs of 19 and 25 August. Temptation does exist in the smallest of human societies but is immensely amplified through urbanisation.

Furthermore, urbanisation erodes the 7 Guiding Principles (ie, Equality, Humanism and Justice in the Knowledge domain, and Charity, Fraternity and Liberty in the Power domain) and especially the 7th Guiding Principle – Love (for others) – due to anonymity, a main feature of urbanisation.

Moreover, human vulnerability will increase due to urbanisation. It’s much easier for a virus to wipe out a human civilisation when humans live closely together and can infect each other. Health issues would also be an explanation why ancient civilisations left their cities.

More and more I see urbanisation as a curse for humanity. Perhaps the real debate isn’t Nature vs Nurture but Nature vs Urbanisation.

Earth, Wind & Fire – That’s The Way Of The World (1975) – 

artists, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

You will find peace of mind

If you look way down in your heart and soul

Don’t hesitate ’cause the world seems cold

Stay young at heart ’cause you’re never (never, never, ..) old at heart

That’s the way of the world

Plant your flower and you grow a pearl

A child is born with a heart of gold

The way of the world makes his heart grow cold


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