It’s really in our Genes

download (1)Another couple of Un-Newsletter’s, this time from February & March ’05.

It Really is in our Gene’s

Have you noticed a phenomenon with internet searches in that whatever you are looking for, you always find something else as well, which isn’t quite what you were originally after, but somehow infinitely more interesting? I’m sure there must be some mathematical inverted correlation around the likelihood of finding what you searched for and what you actually click on. Either that, or the internet simply allows us to indulge in that all too common human pass time of procrastination to levels never experienced by our forebears.

It was after having one of these search experiences that I stumbled across something about the Physicist, Dr Erwin Schrödinger (the cat-in-a-box man). Apparently, a while before the discovery of DNA, he was addressing a group of Biologists and theorised that, the building blocks of life would need to have both some sort of blueprint which defined how a body should be structured, and also have the means from which to build it. In other words – something that is both the foreman and the builder in the factory of our bodies. It seems he was right – when DNA was discovered and later decoded, that’s exactly what they found.

It dawned on me that it really is embedded in our make-up to not only be the architects and designers of our lives, but the constructors of them as well. Our inclination to look to teachers, managers, parents, partners, politicians, priests or Uncle Tom Cobbly and all to give us guidance and direction is just us copping out and allowing others to run our lives for us. An easier way to live perhaps, but it’s going against the grain. The reality is that we are built to be the pilots of our own lives, not have them steered for us.

So, where in your life do you let your “DNA” choose your path? Who do you allow to “genetically engineer” you? Where do you take control, creating your own structures? And where do you allow others to dictate how your life should look?

Hmmmn, I wonder if he was around now, Schrödinger would be able to resolve the internet search engine thing too…


It’s Still in our Gene’s

Last months Un-Newsletter generated probably the most feedback I’ve received to date; in terms of both quantity and diversity. So following on from last month I want to expand a little more.

One reply in particular from a personal acquaintance (who was playing devils advocate with me), implied I was inciting social anarchy with the things I’d written and conclusions I’d alluded to.

The implication was basically, that if we all go off and do what we want, how we want and when we want, then how do we live together? In a society we need structures which has leaders and followers, and a hierarchy with a set of rules to follow. Without this we’d quickly regress into a state of chaos where ‘might is right’ and every man (and woman and child) was out for themselves.

I can certainly see from my friends’ perspective, that this may appear to be the case, but continuing the theme from last month, there already is a set of rules that healthy genes follow. Within the natural order of life, our cells, and consequently genes and DNA are programmed to reproduce life – that is their purpose, not to destroy it. There are times, I accept, when those cells can ‘go bad’ and become destructive (cancerous ones for example). But when healthy and working properly, their purpose is built in to sustain and maintain life. What’s more, within that system, there are specialist cells which help us digest, protect us from invaders, or take oxygen into our blood stream for example – what is in fact a hierarchy of diverse and specialist cells, all working together for the good of our body.

The selfish ‘might is right’ mentality, from my point of view at least, is one of the destructive patterns as it simply isn’t sustainable.

But it leads me to ask myself, and also put the question to you, what choices and actions do you make in your life that are sustaining, and give life? And which ones do you make that are self destructive and ‘cancerous’?

 

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