Sunday, 8 July 2012

It's better when we're together

Jack Jones  sings “At least for most of the questions in my heart, Like why are we here? And where do we go? And how come it's so hard? It's not always easy and sometimes life can be deceiving.  I'll tell you one thing, it's always better when we're together”.  The Beatles sang “Help me if you can, I'm feeling down, And I do appreciate you being round. Help me, get my feet back on the ground, Won't you please, please help me.”  Ben Lee sings “Woke up this morning I suddenly realized We're all in this together I started smiling Cos you were smiling And were all in this together I'm made of atoms You're made of atoms And were all in this together”.  Finally, the Bible says “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken,” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)

Too many of us today suffer from social and emotional isolation but it is clear we thrive when we live and exist together.
A wise and inspiring friend said the other day; this is the first time in history, and only in the Western world, that women are expected to be great mums, wonderful wives, successful career women and talented home keepers all by themselves.  The same is being experienced by men, their roles in the workplace and the home means they have much less time for just hanging out with the blokes.  Technology has made it possible for us to move long distances away from our families and long time friends and many of us are isolated, trying to do everything by ourselves when we were never created to exist alone.

You can be surrounded by people all day everyday but still be lonely, social interactions need to be real and like everything in life, need to be prioritised, worked on and invested in continuously to be made strong and durable.  Social and emotional isolation break down both body and soul, relationships and face-to-face conversations strengthen our immune system and help us to live longer.  Plus it makes life so much more enjoyable. We are not designed to do everything in our own strength, it is exhausting, unsatisfying and limits us greatly.

Natural selection has determined that whales function best in pods, fish in schools, birds in flocks, lions in prides and cows in herds.  Does it not make sense that as human beings we too would work best in a tribe?  Many Anthropologists have found tribes were very satisfied by their way of life, it was very meaningful to them.  Studies show their population was not depressed, suicidal, seething with rage or questioning the purpose of life like we are. Tribal life has been a success since the birth of mankind.

I know we cannot return to hunting and gathering, tribal life was not perfect and I’m not that keen on everybody just wearing a loincloth and having to sleep in a hut.  However, I think there are lots of great benefits from tribal life that we could adopt to make life a lot better for all of us individually and for the future of our planet.  What do you think?

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