FRIDAY, 16 JULY 2004
Question for reflection: We are what we are (particular “I”) so that we can fulfil our needs. If our needs are not being met, can it be said that who and what we are is wrong?
Why is “I” particular to environment? If the Homo sapien is in harmony with his surroundings, if he more or less looks and sounds like most other Homo sapiens in the area, and if he manages to function within the limits of acceptable behaviour, he will have a fair chance of satisfying his needs.
What does it mean that Homo sapien “Brand Smit” migrated from Habitat South Africa to Habitat Taiwan? It means that he was not able to sufficiently meet his needs in the former habitat; even though he had been surviving on a daily basis until his migration, he had seen the flashing red light of impending doom of his personal existence (I refer in no way here to the politics of South Africa and survival of particular ethnic groups – I am referring only to myself as an individual).
What does it mean that Homo sapien “Brand Smit” wants to stay on in Habitat Taiwan? It means he considers this particular habitat as more favourable for long-term needs satisfaction.
“But,” one would say, “some of his most important needs are not currently being met, and if happiness is primarily a sensory issue, he is mostly not happy.”
What can one do?
“Brand Smit” has become a person who can survive in the particular habitat where he currently resides. Furthermore, he has forged an identity that he believes will make it possible for him to also satisfy his needs in other environments. But unrest is brewing … his identity only seems to be a working model!
Is my Homo sapien model good enough to satisfy my needs in this particular place and at this time? If not, what does one do? And what does it mean?
SATURDAY, 17 JULY 2004
Yesterday’s point was if a modern Homo sapien’s needs are not being met, then his identity – the way in which he relates to the world around him, which as its primary function should enable the person to satisfy his needs – is insufficient or even wrong.
[Of course, another possibility is that there’s simply not enough food and water for everyone in the area to quench their thirst and consume sufficient calories.]
* * *
The primary purpose of identity is to enable the Homo sapien to satisfy their needs in the particular time and place where they were born, or where they find themselves at a later stage of their life.
A question can then be asked: Is my identity working, or is it not? Is who and what I am (given, or self-defined after critical process) a workable Homo sapien model that enables me to satisfy my needs? If not, what is the problem? Is who and what I am the problem – that is, do I suffer from some malaise or disorder that hinders my need satisfaction? Or is who and what I am in this specific environment the problem? In the latter case, I have two options: I would either have to modify my identity to better fit the norms and values of the environment in which I find myself in order to improve my chances of survival, or I would have to migrate to another environment where who and what I am would at least not undermine my chances of survival to any significant degree.