“Quanology is about nature – our nature and our relationship to the nature that created us.”
This week I read an advance copy of an upcoming book “Quanology” by John Khoury. It offers an easy to understand way of explaining the scientific side of humanity and sociology from an evolutionary viewpoint. He mixes science with personal development to create a guiding book for those of us who want more from life than a winning lottery ticket. Our biological instincts and cultural history are often in conflict with our present technological and cultural situation causing problems worldwide. We’re not basically selfish, we’re “gene-ish” as the author says, that is to mean our genes are guiding us and we’re still following those basic instincts which evolved over thousands of years. The book explores how we use strategy and resources in everything from creating governments to dating just so our genes can proliferate. He does this with a sense of humor which always helps when thinking about BIG ideas that encompass all of humanity. The message is clear, nature forces us to compete and or cooperate because that’s how we survive and thrive. Evolution doesn’t stand still and I like how this book explains that process.
The science of why and how shows that we should make time to look at our lives objectively and use critical thinking, which if you’re a regular reader of this blog you know is a main message in my posts. At the beginning of each day while our genes may be guiding us the choices we make and actions we take are what ultimately drives evolution forward.
I recall learning about natural selection in school, but never in the context of how we can use the theory to improve our life. In school I learned how to memorize and repeat what was taught so I received good grades. Then I graduated HS, started working and living independently and realized that method only helped me learn the most basic of skills. At some schools(my family moved often so I attended many) we had classes like accounting, home-economics and sex-education to prepare us for grown up life, but that is not enough of what should be taught in the form of “life skills”. As the author notes in his section on education, “I didn’t understand that I could be good at life by studying and practicing life. It never occurred to me. It wasn’t a part of school, so I didn’t think it was a subject.” Does this ring true to you? Are you starting to understand that education is more than learning math and english? Then you should read this book.
Our species just about stopped evolving so long ago you may be asking, what has evolution done for me recently? Well not much, but it does have one function that I find to be very helpful. In order to stay sane when learning about terrible news I remind myself that we are a bunch of animals who have to evolve into higher beings and evolution like that takes a lot of time. As an example from this book, the author writes in regards to how slavery used to be legal, but is now illegal. “The writing is on the wall to have it wiped off the earth soon enough . . . “soon” for evolution, that is.” Doesn’t that make you feel optimistic? So the next time you hear bad news and all you feel capable of doing is signing a petition to stop such atrocities, remember that we are improving, but humans evolve SLOWLY. This isn’t an excuse to slack off, but instead should inspire you to keep being the change you want to see. Evolution follows revolutionary ideas.
As far as self-development books go this is one of the best. I recommend this book for anyone with a curiosity for why the human world works as it does, science and sociology teachers, curious students, those looking for a more sustainabe life and hopeless romantics so they can have some balance and not be so hopeless.
Find out more at Quanology.org.