Following is an excerpt from a samvaad (diaogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Question: Why do people dominate, in any sense - money, strength?
Acharya Prashant: The reason is simple - survival, physical survival.
You look at animals. If you want to understand the human mind, look at animals because that is where we are coming from. In the group of animals, who survives?
Listener: The strongest, the fittest one.
AP: The strongest one, the one who can dominate. In a group of males, who gets the female? The one who can win and kill everybody else. That is what happens in the animals. Kill the others, dominate them, injure them and then you have the access to the female. That is what is called the survival of the fittest, the Darwinian selection, and all that. Because of this the off-spring that is born, is born out of the strongest male. So the species gets strengthened and strengthened.
So physically we are conditioned to be violent, dominating. All that is there in your physiology.
But we can go beyond that, at least after the age of twelve, we can go beyond that. A child cannot be accepted to go beyond that, but we can. We must, if we are to be human. We must go beyond this conditioning.
L: Why does the society have values?
AP: Why does the society exist?
L: Because man is a social animal.
AP: Who told you that?
L: My teacher in the third grade.
AP: Are you still in the third grade? Are you?
L: No! I heard it from others.
AP: Why must you hear? You hear only the words said by the others. Why can’t you know yourself? Are we really animals? Neither social nor animals. We are individual human beings. Now why does the society exist?
AP: You tell me, you are living in it. You are asking why does the society exist? Isn’t it one of the most basic questions you must ask? Why must the society exist?
L: Because we feel unsafe. Even animals live in groups.