On Human Nature

You’ll find in political and parenting debates the contrasting claims that humans are by nature either peaceful or violent. I have no doubt that humans have the capacity for both peace and violence. I see around me people acting peacefully, and I see in the news people acting violently. I would say that human nature is both peaceful and violent: peaceful when their needs are met, and violent when they aren’t. We are all trying to remove “felt uneasiness” as a matter of necessity, of survival and achieving happiness. Sometimes we misjudge both the cause and the cure, but that’s a problem of misinformation, not nature. I think that if we want peace, then we must focus on understanding needs, ours and theirs, and finding ways to meet those needs. Both homes and societies can be peaceful. It’s not an impossibility. And that’s today’s two cents.