The Anatomy of Institutions

Who stole our ability to reason in ways that benefit all and how did they do it?

“When I arrived at my assigned camping place it was wild, as if nobody had ever been there. I figured out a way to get through the brush to the outhouse, about 70 yards away and I came back a different way. The next day, I remembered the way there and also returned the same way since it was easier to find now that I had tramped it down a bit. I repeated this for about two weeks and when my friends began to arrive at the campsite I showed them the outhouse trail and they used it. You could differentiat who the new arrivals were from folks who had been there awhile because the latter knew the trail and they would instruct the newcomers. Then Mark found an easier trail and some of the group used it, but mostly the newcomers. The earlier folks were accustomed to the old trail and stayed with it as a habit, even placing a sign on it saying “Outhouse Trail.” It had become ingrained on the landscape, in memory and now in written language, almost an institution or sub-culture for “Olders” because the newcomers continued using Mark’s trail.”

For the Olders, their senses had been directed and rewarded by using the old trail. They found the Outhouse and they also survived another day, so why change? Survival is a powerful yet overlooked reward until, of course, it is threatened, then we fight for it. As part of their Other Body (Planet Earth) and their sensible desire to survive, the senses of Direction, Exploration, Place, Community, Trust, Reason, Language, Distance, Motion and others had bonded/fixated to the old trail. If the trail had been found to be toxic, those who insisted on continuing to use it would have been identified as being addicted or socialized (brainwashed) to it through past repetition and rewards.

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