Friday, June 16, 2017

Musings of an Alien Anthropologist Among the Human Race

It's Friday night and I'm sitting here thinking about how there's so much I don't understand about other people...mostly cultural stuff (marriage, weddings, religion) but also biological stuff (the desire to have children) and, why do so many people fear death? etc.

I realized long ago that I'll never understand the why behind why other people believe and want certain things, and I have to chalk it up to my brain being wired differently than the majority of other humans. And it's difficult for me to articulate questions without sounding judgmental.

You can tell me that religion gives you answers or makes you feel comforted, and on an intellectual level I can understand that answer, but I don't fully comprehend it because I've never felt a need for answers or comfort. So I still wonder "but WHY do you need/want/believe, though?"

You can tell me that you've always wanted kids, or try to claim that it's driven by biology, but I'm a biological human and I've never felt any desire or compulsion to procreate. It's like my brain doesn't recognize my body as even being capable of such an act. I can only think of it in abstract terms. I understand the biology, but even though my organs function normally, something's different in the way my brain is wired. It's wired to find the idea of child-bearing almost...offensive, if not outright horrifying and repulsive. The same way people know whether they're straight or gay, is how I've always known I will not get married or have kids. It's not even a choice I made, it's something I've always known, since childhood. So I find it bizarre that people choose to do those things. You can tell me why you did, and what it means to you, but your answers aren't answers I can comprehend.

Basically, I can't grok it.

That doesn't mean I don't respect your religion or your marriage or your family. I just often feel like an alien anthropologist living among the human race and being puzzled by why you do and believe various things.

Like, why do people fear death? Maybe this ties in with my inability to understand the need for religion: Everything dies, and once you're dead, you're dead. In death there is no ability to regret things you did or didn't do in life. You have no consciousness; there is no such thing as an afterlife. But billions of people don't believe that. I'll respect their beliefs as long as they're not harmful to anyone. But I'll never understand why people feel the need to seek answers or believe in a higher power or follow a religion. 

So, with this in mind, I gave up trying to figure out people years ago. There's so much I'll never understand about them. As long as there's a mutual "live and let live" philosophy, we generally get along though.