The ultimate purpose of life on earth is to create.
I watched a wildlife documentary about penguins yesterday on BBC iPlayer called “Penguins – Spy in the Huddle”, a clever infiltration of robotic penguins living up close amongst three species of real penguins around the world with cameras fitted. My initial thought that this would be a dull documentary turned to curiosity and delight as I watched the journey the penguins took through danger and obstacle; their mating rituals; how the male-female and community cooperated to the moment their young came into the world. There was the drama of a penguin lost behind; the slap fight between two females over a male; the amorous affections of a lonely male for a robotic penguin before his mate appeared and attacked the robot; the male forcing the female to let go of the egg for him to look after so the female could return to the sea to feed; the cooperation of the penguin community in fighting against the cold or seeing off predators.
Often I compare the natural world to humanity. The only quality that separates humankind from other animals is imagination: ego is the ability to imagine self separate from the world and other objects; empathy is the ability to imagine the aliveness, feelings and uniqueness in external objects; tool making the ability to imagine connections between a problem and a solution; pro-activity the ability to imagine alternative possibilities to the instinctive reactive ones. Eliminate imagination and humanity is no different from the rest of the animal and plant kingdom.
These penguins like all of life follow the three purposes of living: to live, to grow, to reproduce. The first two purposes, live and grow, seems to focus upon the ultimate goal of reproduction; giving an impression that the only purpose of life in plants and animals is to reproduce. I exist only to create reproductions of me. It was extraordinary the amount of effort, struggle, self-sacrifice and burning need to fight to get to their nesting grounds, find a mate, procreate, nest, defend and nurture their young has been thrown in by these penguins. It reaches to the extent that salmon self destruct after spawning, and male spiders feed themselves to females just so the young will have energy to sustain them to live, grow then repeat the process again.
Reproduction is creativity, the process leading to procreation is the creative process. Amongst plants and animals creativity is king. There is nothing like a happy contented plant or animal that is successfully throwing out copies of itself into the world. Humanity is no different to plants and animals where they ultimately are fixated on a similar outcome of producing children; however imagination adds additional creative needs for humanity. Imagination is an extension of creativity, a sort of super-creative process.
Plants and animals focus on babies, but humanity goes beyond babies to poetry, music, architecture, invention and space ships. There is a hidden agenda here I suspect, for a large aspect of organic life is by design rather than chance. Why is it so important to life that humanity must have imagination when in fact its downside is turning into a nightmarish path of self-destruction and damage to the planet? As above so below is a principle of the universe, what happens in one part of the universe is likely happening elsewhere. If a virus takes over cells to send out more of itself into the world, or dandelion seeds head out upon the winds to colonise other places, humanity is perhaps a seed being made ready to be sent out from planet Earth to take its DNA into the cosmos.
If one considers as some scientists do that the Earth is a living organism, then the DNA of Earth is locked into the organic life existing on the planet, operating exactly like a dandelion being made ready to colonise other planets, to send the DNA outwards. It makes sense for entropy will kill every living thing, so to procreate is to cheat entropy of its prize, to allow life to go on. One day Earth will die, so to send out DNA to other planets as plants and animals do on its surface allows the Earth a chance to continue to exist beyond its death. The destructive aspect of imagination is offset by Earth for the possibilities of continued life beyond its ending.
The Earth won’t lose sleep if humanity fails to live up to expectations going extinct. Left with only bacteria the Earth can over millions of years rebuild a new worthy species. It seems to me pointless for organic life to exist only for the purposes of creating copies, the idea of another purpose appeals to me, one of a grander scale but a similar process to what exists, to go forth and multiply across the cosmos. To Earth the code in the DNA is important, the form it takes is not; it won’t matter if Mars is colonised by human-looking forms, or by spiders, or by trees, the fact the DNA gets to Mars to colonise it then follow the live, grow and reproduce process is what matters.
Creativity is king. As I read through the blogs on WordPress I encounter happy and unhappy people. The happy people are living a creative process throwing out creative forms into the world, the unhappy people are those whose creativity has been restricted or silenced. All the processes of life is focused on creativity, either to make babies, or poems or colonise Mars. Creativity leads to health, happiness and abundance, the reward for following what the Earth and our DNA wants us to do.