Dreams, Evolution, Value Fulfillment: Session 910
If there were no idiots among you, you would soon find that geniuses were absent also.
Those human abilities that you consider to be characteristic of your species are, again, dependent upon the existence of infinite numbers of variations that appear in the aggregate, to give you often obviously opposing states. What you think of then as the average intelligence is a condition that exists because of the activity of constant variables, minute variations that give you at one end of the scale the idiot, and at the other the genius.
Both are necessary to maintain that larger “norm” of mental activity. I am using the word “norm” here for your convenience, though I disagree with the ways in which the term has been used, when it has been set up as a rule of measurement, psychologically speaking. The genetic system is not closed, therefore. The genes do not simply hold information without any reference to the body’s living system. It does not exist, then – the genetic structure – like some highly complicated mechanism already programmed, started and functioning “blindly”, so that once it is set into operation there is no chance for modification.
Particularly in your own species there is a great give-and-take between human genetic systems, the environment, and cultural events – and by cultural events I mean events having to do with your peculiarly unique field of activity that includes the worlds of politics, economics, and so forth.
Genetic events are not irrefutable in a deterministic fashion. They represent strong inclinations toward certain bodily or mental activity, certain biological preferences. They lead toward the activation of certain events over others, so that the probabilities are “loaded” in certain directions. Genetic events are then events, though at a different level of activity than you are used to thinking of.
We are speaking of chromosomal messages. These are not written within the chromosomes as words might be written upon paper, but the information and the chromosomes are a living unit. The information is alive. We are speaking about a kind of biological cuneiform, in which the structures, the very physical structures, of the cells contain all of the knowledge needed to form a physical body – to form themselves. This is indeed knowledge of biological form, and biologically making its clearest living statement.
The cells [with their] genetic packages, like all cells, react to stimuli. They act. They are aware of all of the body’s events biologically. In ways impossible to verbalize, they are also aware of the environment of the body as it is perceived at biological levels. I have said before that in one way or another each living cell is united with each other living cell through a system of inner communication. “Programmed” genetic activity can be altered by conditions in the environment.
I am not simply saying that genetic activity can be changed, for example, through something like a nuclear accident, but that highly beneficial alterations can also take place in genetic behavior, as in your terms the genetic structure not only prepares the species for any contingency, but also prepares it by triggering those characteristics and abilities that are needed by the species at any given time, and also by making allowances for such future development.
Your genetic structure reacts to each thought that you have, to the state of your emotions, to your psychological climate. In your terms, it contains the physical history of the species in context with the probable future capabilities of the species. You choose your genetic structure so that it suits the challenges and capabilities of the species. You choose your genetic structure so that it suits the challenges and potentials that you have chosen. It represents your physical reference point, your bodily framework. It is your personal physical property. It is a portion of physical matter that you have identified, filled out with your own identity. It is like a splendid ship, the body, that you have chosen ahead of time for a splendid challenging adventure – a ship that you have personally appointed that is equipped to serve as much as possible as a physical manifestation of your personhood.
Some people, in beginning such a venture, will indeed insist upon an excellent vessel, with the most sophisticated mechanisms, equipped with grand couches and a banquet room. Others would want much more excitement, much more zest, and order then instead a less grand vessel, but one that went faster. Some would set goals for themselves that demanded that their powers of seamanship be tested. The analogy may be a simple one, yet each person chooses the living vessel of the body, with his or her own intents and purposes in mind.
In physical reality, if you will forgive me, life is the name of the game – and the game is based upon value fulfillment. That means simply that each form of life seeks toward the fulfillment and unfolding of all of the capacities that it senses within its living framework, knowing that in that individual fulfillment each other species of life is also benefited.
In no way do I mean to demean the indisputable value of geniuses, or their great contributions to the quality of life – but the quality of life is, again, also benefited by the existence of idiots. Not only because both ends of the scale are necessary for genetic reasons, but also because idiots themselves are in no way considered failures or defects by nature. Those terms are human judgments. Idiots also serve their role by moderating the sometimes fierce hold that the reasoning mind can have upon human activity.
The idiot is often able to experience in his or her own reality a freer, more generous, more faithful flow of emotional states, unhampered by reason’s sometimes stern dictates, and it is important that such a moderating tendency does operate genetically.
I will have more to say on that subject later in the book.
The reasoning mind, as you have used it thus far, roughly since the birth of Christianity, has confined its reasoning abilities to a very narrow spectrum of reality. It has seen the value of life largely only as that life conforms to its own standards. That is, the reasoning mind, as you have used it, considers that only reasoning creatures are capable of understanding life’s values. Other forms of life have almost seemed beside the point, their value considered only insofar as they were of service to man. But man’s life is obviously dependent upon the existence of life’s other species, and with him those species share certain values. Life is sacred – all life – and again, all life seeks value fulfillment, not simply physical survival.
Ruburt read an article about the development of a strain of mice without thymus [glands]. Since the thymus is very important in the necessary process of maintaining bodily resistance to disease, these particular mice have little resistance. They are bred and sold for experimental purposes. The intent of such procedures is to promote the quality of human life, to study the nature of diseases, and hopefully apply what is learned to some of the lives of human beings. Mice are not considered human. They are not. So, like any animal, they are thought of as dispensable, sacrificed to a fine humanitarian end.
Perhaps at first that prejudice of the reasoning mind might escape you, since after all mice are far divorced from your own species. There were Jews sacrificed to the same end not too long ago, and the reasoning mind was largely the same, though in that case you were dealing with your own species.
Jews were considered almost not human, however, and whenever such atrocities against your own species are concerned, you indulge in the same kind of twisted reasoning. Because the Jews were considered less than human – or, at best, human defects – they were thought of as justifiable sacrifices on the altar of “the genetic betterment of mankind”. You cannot improve the quality of your own lives by destroying the quality of any other kinds of life. There is no genetic master race. The vary classification of the species into races to begin with is based upon distinctions that are ridiculously minute in the overall picture of the similarities.
Ruburt was incensed by thee article that he read, and he said indignantly that such procedures involve a biological immorality. I usually avoid terms like “morality” or “immorality”, since their definitions vary according to the individual. The proceedings, however, do involve a biological violation, a going against nature’s flow and intent, a process in which a form of life is made to go against its own value fulfillment, and it is because of such attitudes involving other kinds of life that the horrors of the Jewish war camps were made possible.