Get Thee behind me, you Big Ape.

I wish people wouldn’t make moral judgements about genetic imperatives. We were conditioned from our first steps as a human to think we were about to be eaten by the other creatures around us. The only way we survived, being all soft and hairless and weak, was by being smarter, meaner, and more inventive than the creatures that surrounded us.

We are designed to struggle for dominance. Once we achieved it, we ran amuck. We play stupid little dominance games with each other, also a legacy of our evolution–both physical and social. But we fail to recognize this as natural, and instead harp on “evil” and “sin,” not realizing that we force people down paths of rationalization and justification that denies the basic fact of the matter. We all have “dark” impulses. We want what we want and we want to smash the things that stand in our way. Every one of us has SOME element of this instinct, even if it’s completely suppressed. It’s the same thing that keeps people going through the greatest traumas.

Rather than saying “get thee behind me, Satan,” one should instead say “Oh, shut the hell up, you big ape.”

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