Thursday, July 30, 2009

Is a conflict free world impossible to achieve?

On request from Velan to write on this topic... Here it goes ..

Why must Indians and Pakistanis hate each other? (ofc not all do, but u get the general idea) Israel and Palestine, Iran and Iraq, US and Russia? Why should Shia muslims fight the Sunnis? Conservative catholics and Jews? A complete list would stretch to the moon I think.

Hating someone/something doesnt make one happy or feel good. Still why do people continue to do so? That too on a global level (as with exceptions to everything, we have the Swiss and some Pacific islanders who dont care if the world is imploding around them). Why cant we tolerate each other with respect to belief systems, customs, rituals, sexual preferences and lifestyle. In no way is this hate culture new or modern. I have a hunch that early humans invented clubs and spears to bump each other off and then accidently discovered their use for hunting food. Since then through the medieval ages till the nuclear age, man has continuously sought for ways to harm/kill other humans. But take any sci-fi alien film and the whole world gangs up to kick alien a$$ with dialogues like "the human race shall prevail" and so on ..

If you have been reading this post so far expecting me to tie all the loose ends and provide a logical explanation, I m sorry. I do not know the complete answer to this. I believe there are several multi faceted reasons and am eager to hear from you readers as to why you think people behave this way. I for one surely do not hate anybody. Its just too much negativity for me to handle.


  1. Nope- I reckon that conflict is in our genes. I reckon it's the way nature works; It may be nature's way of weeding out the weak. It happens in the animal kingdom- I know this sounds straight out of a Nazi propoganda movie, and I hate the Nazis with every cell in my body; but my opinion is that all animals do it too- they bump each other off. Take a lion pride, as an example. If a new male takes over, the first thing he does is to kill the cubs- he ensures his gene pool passes on. It seems brutal, but it happens. And do remember, we all started as ape-man tribes, trying to outdo the other tribes in trying to find food and water. Some tribes joined up and others didn't. Maybe that mentality/ survival instinct still exists.

    If you take into account friends and allies, it seems to me that it is a compromise between two people(s) who share common interests (with the monkey men, it would have been better protection against predators, an easier chance of finding food and water). It will never happen with any of the examples that you have given (the religious ones, that is) as they have been taught historically to hate each other- their identities/egos are set by those before them. Unless they find common ground, without any reference to superiority or who's version of the religion is purer, or whose religion is better, whose skin colour is better and all that(the list is endless), no conflict can ever be resolved. Even if it is inching towards resolution, like in the case of Yithzak Rabin,former Israeli Prime Minister- some ultra nationalistic Israelis shot him. Alliances can only be formed by people who share the same interests. That's never going to happen. The entire world cannot be allied together in peace. That's because we would have no one to compete against and that is against our own nature as a apecies.

  2. P.S. I love the Dilbert Principle too! Probably the funniest management book ever written- and it makes a whole load of sense!

  3. @ Narayanan

    What u said is brutal truth, humans as individuals see themselves in a fierce competence among each other as it is born in our blood. may be the history of our forefathers desperately never allows us to move on( jus kiddin!!). The modern day world has initial egositic problems more compared to the religious problems. That's bascially due to the past history, people try to poke at the past rather than the present as future nobody knows. There is also difficulty in finding a common ground to settle some where in the corner which can give u some soultions without beheading each other but the history suggest the other way.


    Nice post and interesting topic to add fuel to current day global problems. v all know it may be never ending story.

  4. @Narayan Wow man! U basically wrote a beautiful summary on why the world will never come to peace. For your thought and others as well, I'd like to share a cognitive article published recently on "Humans are becoming less violent". Here is the link

  5. Quest for resources and survival of the fittest are Nature s laws. I can understand if conflict arises in such a context. The male lion kills off the cubs coz obviously he is stronger with better genes and so his offspring will be better equipped for the world. There are quite a lot of species in the animal kingdom in which several males do not get to mate ever in life coz they arent stronger/attractive enough. Thats Nature s way of phasing out bad genes.

    In case of humans,I am more concerned about the general lack of tolerance towards fellow human beings and their value systems. Havent we read stories/watched movies of Romans and "the Barbarians". The "barbarians" were termed such simply because they did not have an elaborate social structure like the Romans. Conflicts of today mostly reflect power hungry individuals who discard their own countrymen by the wayside to stay in command. This is at the highest level.