THE LIFE OF CIVILIZATIONS : CULTURES: THE ORGANISMS OF MANKIND
"The evolution of human individuals into macro-social organisms, follows the pattern of evolution from individual cells to human beings, at a greater scale. In this manner human citizens act as cells of social organisms, called civilizations and cultures"
History is the study of the 'body of human cells' extended in space and time, from the first till the last human being: as Medicine is the study of the 'body of DNA cells' extended in space and time, from the first DNA-cell till the last cell that disappears after the body has died. History and Humanity in this book are parallel concepts, since the Time that humanity exists is the time that History lasts.
Yet History is too extensive, to be studied without smaller units. So Historians divide the study of the human species into smaller pieces of History called civilizations.
Civilizations in bio-history are treated as small bodies of History, organisms subject to the processes of evolution, reproduction and extinction. Their advantage as a tool of analysis over total History for the researcher is clear. While History is still a body in the process of existence, many civilizations have completed their life-span and gone through the 3 Horizons or Ages, of any biological species: birth, expansion and reproduction of 'cellular tissue,' decadence and death...
Yet since in each civilization we can see a small mirror of the existence of the entire body of History, we can understand why history might die, by studying civilizations which died in the past.
A civilization is a wave of 'similar' human minds and instruments which during a period of Time, share common goals, and possess similar languages, cultural customs, ideas, instruments, and social organizations. What we call the networks of energy and information of History.
In that sense we define a civilization by two kinds of cellular species: instruments, mainly metal-species belonging to the economic ecosystem, and ideas, mainly art and word species belonging to the informative networks of human societies.
So we can distinguish two kind of organic civilizations according to the weight of those two cellular species.
These are: Eco[nomic]systems of metal, dominant in metal-species, guided by warriors and monetary information, whose aim is to reproduce machines, instruments and weapons.
On the other hand, cultures, historic ecosystems of carbolife are guided by verbal information [laws, religions, ethics]. Their aim is to reproduce humans, and human goods [food, nature, education, human sensorial arts, housing, etc.].
Even though both ecosystems are mixed, and most humans are unable to differentiate them, it is important to realize that 'Historic Cultures' and 'Eco[nomic]systems' are different organisms, sometimes symbiotic, sometimes opposed.
Today 'Eco[nomic]systems' control cultures, and so we reproduce more machines than human goods; we obey monetary orders [wages, prices] instead of verbal orders; and our institutions and organizations [currency nations, supra-economical and military organizations] are eco[nomic]systems, while cultural organizations [religions, sensorial arts, gastronomy, literature, etc.], fade away, and merge into a simplified worldwide eco[nomic]system, submissive to prices and markets. Yet this is only a recent development.
The dominance of Human Cultures over Metal eco[nomic]systems has been in fact the rule of Human history until very recently.
Cultures are social organisms. Their 'cellular units' are human minds and their Laws and Ethic mandates which are cloned in the human minds of History [believers], through knots of information [genius, prophets, books]. A sum of human minds acting under the same informative commands is a culture [Buddhism, or Communism, or Christianity] based on the same verbal mandates, that the cells of the culture obey. From that core of 'verbal ideas' the culture will originate a series of customs regarding the way energy, human goods, instruments, are used.
Cultures are the fundamental Organism of Human History.
With the arrival of metal networks of energy [warrior hordes] and metal information [trader routes], cultures became mixed with eco[nomic]systems, shaping civilizations. We will look at history as a game between two herds, two ecosystems: herds of metal-species and animetals, humans that need metal to rule societies, and herds of human species, based in verbal laws and natural goods. Those herds evolve and reproduce and communicate under the same laws that guide any body or ecosystem. Both systems integrate within a civilization.
However even if the development of eco[nomic]systems and cultures overlaps, both ecosystems have different life-spans, not coincidental in time. For example, the Christian culture dominates in Europe between 330 AD [beginning of Christian Rome] till the French Revolution [when Christian verbal information is substituted by digital, scientific and economical information]. Yet in that period we have several Eco[nomic]systems, based on different weapons and currencies. The eco[nomic]system of cavalry weapons and bartering [lower Roman empire and middle ages]; the eco[nomic]system of coins and land cannons [renaissance]; and the eco[nomic]system of paper-money and sea gunboats [Anglo-Saxon economies]. We can talk then of three civilizations in as much as the eco[nomic]system of the Christian culture changes: the Middle Age civilization, the Renaissance, and the Protestant civilization.
Thus we differentiate between 2 kinds of civilizations for whom we use different names:
1. Human or Historic orWord Civilizations, or cultures; dominant in culture, in art, verbal ideas and human, nature-based goods [artisany, agriculture].
2. Economic or Metal Civilizations, or Nations, dominant in eco[nomic]systems, in monetary and military power. Cultures made of mind cells, like organic beings made of cellular clones, are born, fruit of a single 'cellular unit' or Prophet with his ideas for a better wor[l]d. Then his ideas multiply in the minds of believers and in sacred texts, in networks of information called Gods, until a religion or legal system organizes a network of information or energy, called a culture of the Word.
However in eco[nomic]systems it is an instrument, normally a weapon, what starts the Metal-civilization when it is discovered, reproduced by a horde of warriors, and expanded worldwide by those warriors, who become the Top Predator 'elite' class of the civilization, praying on the 'body-ecosystem' of a 'culture'. So, German cavalry warriors, preyed on the Christian civilization, carving it into 'pieces' called nations, that they ruled since the Middle Ages. The Buddhist civilization was destroyed by Hindi castes of warriors, that also divided that civilization in military states, and so on... It is then obvious that word civilizations were dominant in the first ages of History, when there was little metal.
Metal civilizations are dominant in the last ages of human History when human prophets and artists, and their networks of information [ideas, art works] and energy [Nature, farming concerns] became extinct, degraded and substituted by money and machine networks, the physiological systems of Metal-civilization.
The life of civilizations.
Can we take our comparison further, and talk of a life cycle for human societies, organic civilizations, within the bigger organisms of history? Indeed, we can.
As the entire process of history seems to have 3 ages, so do smaller organisms of history, civilizations that live and die, when through war, another civilization conquers and colonizes the previous civilization. So we can talk of an organic cycle of life in civilizations, which reflects also in the organic systems of those civilizations, including verbal and visual art, which acts as the informative mind-brain of those historic civilizations.
Birth of human and metal-based civilizations.
We said that cultures resemble living systems. They go through the same cycles of birth, reproduction and death. Cultures are born as organisms do, out of a single or a few prophetic or legislative individuals-cells, that reproduce their ideas into many believer-minds. So Christianism is born out of the mind of Jesus Christ that first expands into 12 disciples, which expand themselves into thousands of Roman believers, that expanded into billions of other minds. While America is born of the mind of a few legislators that craft a constitution latter expanded into more laws, obeyed today by all American citizens.
As cellular organisms the nervous system (verbal/visual art) is the fundamental network of those civilizations. What establishes you as an American citizen, or a member of Islam...
However there are also civilizations more simple, less organized, which are not born out of a complex verbal system of information, either religious or legal. They are born by the brutal imposition of a caste of warriors which impose with their weapons their will to a mass of citizens. Those civilizations are sick bodies of history, but also very common. They last less than organic civilizations based in nervous/verbal systems, since they are ill constructed and collapse easily as the cells submitted to the predator warrior cells rebel and oust them of power. So the Christian civilizations has lasted 2000 years, but over that civilization many warrior empires have born and died. We call those civilizations metal-civilizations which are defined by an icon weapon, hold by the caste of power.
Thus in both kinds of civilizations (Human-Artistic civilizations or Warrior civilizations) either an ideology or book of ideas, (a network of human information) or a type of weapons, becomes the language of power which defines the civilization. Of course the quality of both civilizations is different and it reflects in the art/mind of those civilizations. The art of the warrior culture of Spain in the XVI century, based in muskets, was clearly inferior to that of the Italian culture based in the Christian word.
The art of Greece, a sophisticated civilization that loved culture was clearly superior to that of Rome a civilization based in the power of iron.
Ideas and instruments define organic civilizations.
Ideas and metal-instruments together shape History. For that reason Historians, when they focus on military systems of power, divide history into the Age of Bronze, the Age of Iron Empires, the Age of Chivalry (Middle Ages), the European Age of Gunpowder (Modern age), or the Atomic Age. There is also the Christian Age and the Buddhist Age of South-Asia, when they focus on the cultural component of the civilization or the age coins, or the age of paper money and stocks, or the age of e-money (new species of money), when they focus in monetary information...
Reproduction of civilizations. The competence between cultures.
Civilizations are complex organisms, as human beings are. They also grow, reproduce, mature and become extinguished.
When the religious or legal culture reaches maturity it often reproduces in another zone of space-time, creating a daughter civilization or colony. Finally, when its ethic laws and networks of information, the weapons of the civilization and the human citizens they control, decay and corrupt, or become obsolete to new weapons, the culture dies and a new, more evolved civilization destroys the old civilization. Then a new generational cycle of history starts.
So for example, the old cultures of Judaism was substituted for most of its part by the evolved Christian religion with ethics and laws that were more harmonic and just to human beings. Judaism dwindled and never has been as powerful and christianism, as old species dwindle in numbers, and so few reptiles survived after the arrival of more evolved Mammals. We can in that sense talk of the competence between civilizations, as we do between species.
Similarly if we consider technological civilizations, based not in verbal laws, but in monetary and military systems, first a weapon is discovered, and reproduced by a small horde, which becomes an army, which conquers a nation and becomes a ruling aristocracy, that imposes its customs, and controls with the icon-weapon the civilization. Yet when a better weapon appears soon a new horde uses that weapon to destroy the previous military aristocracy.
It is then clear that as a civilization develops the ideas and machines which carry that civilization to success, it eliminates previous, obsolete civilizations. In this manner, successful civilizations reproduce their genetic ideas and machines into other regions of the Earth, creating colonies, daughter cultures and eco[nomic]systems.
Like a human child, the daughter civilization is often a more evolved species where the ideas and instruments of the previous civilization are improved. Civilizations inherit and improve on, like children do, their parental civilizations, often extinguishing them. So the Assyrians were defeated by the Persians who had copied and improved its weapons, iron and cavalry. Yet Persian art, even behavior would be similar to Assyrian art and behavior. Genetic continuity in civilizations is not racial but cultural, of structures and ideas, of icons, machines and modes of life. For example, in Arabia stirrup cavalry brought an empire-civilization that expanded West till Al-Andalus (the South of Spain). That stirrup civilization migrated to America and colonized the southwestern states, giving origin to the Old Far West civilization, with horse and cattle ranching. In that territory, the horse civilization flourished between the 17th and 20th centuries, when the fundamental icon-species of the culture, the horse became extinguished as a form of transport by the car, a more efficient metal-species. The example shows the dynamic quality of the life of civilizations. They are born, reproduce and become extinct through the genetic evolution of objects and words, which bring as much diversity to cultural evolution of its species, products and ideas, as genetic memories bring to the body.
Thus in the same manner
biologists can scientifically organize the data they have about species through
genetic information and instruments. Thanks to the memorial remains of history,
the historian can study the birth, reproduction and extinction of evolutionary
history and its civilizations.
Death Of Civilizations
Civilizations also die. One day another civilization with more efficient ideologies of man, or better machines, comes along and destroys the old civilization. As in animal feeding, once the new civilization has destroyed the old civilization, it reforms the energy cells=citizens of the dead civilization to its image and resemblance. Let us again bring the biological comparison. A hunter feeds on the energy of a victim's body that becomes in part wasted (killed) and in part transformed into cells of the predator. This also happens in civilizations: part of the human energy is wasted by war, and the remaining humans are transformed into believers of the predator civilization. The Spanish perhaps killed some 70% of the Indians and the rest became Christians. It is the death of the civilization. Because when ideas and instruments change, the civilization changes. The iron civilization of Rome is not the same as the Middle Ages civilization of stirrup weapons imposed by German warriors. The Roman civilization had been destroyed by "stirrup warriors" of the Germanic civilization. Again such "civilization" is not the Gunpowder civilization of Italy during the Renaissance. Gunpowder wiped out chivalry and a new civilization was born. Nor is Amon-Egypt the same as Greek-Christian Egypt, or Arab-Muslim Egypt. The verbal ideology changed, and the Egyptian civilization became extinct.
Always to the extent we have reliable data, civilizations have died in an age of war. War collapses the organism of a civilization in a catastrophe similar to that of human death, which happens in a few minutes (years in the longer period of the life of historic societies).
War is the main disease of history. Weapons destroy civilizations. Since the invention of metal, war history repeats itself: a new weapon of mass destruction reproduces in great numbers and kills societies in all the continents, changing the civilizations of the planet, after killing millions of human beings.
Weapons of mass destruction are indeed nothing new. They appear with the first cultures that produce bronze, a hard form of metal in massive numbers, in egypt and mesopotamia. The catastrophic changes they caused to the Neolithic civilizations, were so deep that started an entire new civilization. The oldest book known to man, Genesis, was probably a parable of the history that preceded the first massive holocausts of history, by weapons of mass destruction. Within a few hundred years of the appareance of Bronze in Southern Egypt, massive empires where thousands of men become professional warriors, unify the Delta and lower Mesopotamic cultures.
The word unification has here a negative meaning, because it is a unification based in castes, no longer in dynamic social classes, but in castes of power based in weapons, with warriors on top.
The Neolithic civilization of Goddesses of love, and respect for nature, of Religions of the Living Universe, died away ever since and a new dominant culture, the culture of Animetals spreaded throughout the world.
How this process took place, and how artists, the minds of societies have reflected the extinction of their cultures in their works of art?