I am a woman born 1949 and my quest is to find a mindmate
to grow old together as a mutually devoted couple
in a relationship based upon the
egalitarian rational commitment paradigm
bonded by intrinsic commitment
as each other's safe haven and secure basis.

The purpose of this blog is to enable the right man
to recognize us as reciprocal mindmates and
to encourage him to contact me:

The entries directly concerning,
who could be my mindmate,
are mainly at the beginning.
If this is your predominant interest,
I suggest to read this blog in the same order
as it was written, following the numbers.

I am German, therefore my English is sometimes faulty.

Maybe you have stumbled upon this blog not as a potential match.
Please wait a short moment before zapping.

Do you know anybody, who could be my mindmate?
Your neighbour, brother, uncle, cousin, colleague, friend?
If so, please tell him to look at this blog.
While you have no reason to do this for me,
a stranger, maybe you can make someone happy, for whom you care.

Do you have your own webpage or blog,
which someone like my mindmate to be found probably reads?
If so, please mention my quest and add a link to this blog.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

44. Is War a Valve for Instincts?

Is War a Valve for Instincts?

The following is a text, that I wrote in 2004 in my late msn group.   I put it here unchanged, but I will elaborate this topic later


I had a discussion with someone, who had been in the military for 35 years.    This made me think a lot and maybe the result could interest anybody.  

First, there are two types of soldiers.   (I am using this word for any person, who is a member of the armed forces of any country with any position in it.)

Extrinsic soldiers are persons, who were either drafted, joined the military under social pressure or for material benefits, or because they were indoctrinated and brainwashed to fight for a cause.  
Intrinsic soldiers are persons, nearly always men, who have a specific type of personality.   Some men join the army, because they are intrinsic soldiers finding their perfect place, and some extrinsic soldiers become intrinsic soldiers under the influence of the military life.

As mentioned elsewhere, according to psycho-biology the instincts of human apes are still those as developed by evolution for the survival of small hordes of people in prehistoric times.   Such hordes needed fighters to survive in an environment of dangerous animals and dangerous other hordes competing for resources.  
An army of soldiers is an organised life form of fighters to host and reinforce their special traits and needs.  

Genetically successful in evolution were men with a high level of virility.   Virility is a combination of instincts:
- aggression, brutality, destruction 
- priority of physical achievement over intellectual achievement
- accepting the principle of hierarchy forming plus a strong competitiveness and ruthlessness to fight for a high position
- ingroup vs outgroup thinking, making a strong distinction between group members as carriers and protectors for the own or related genes, and a complete mercilessness for non group members
- promiscuity to procreate as much as possible

As long as someone has a high level of virility but also a strong rational capacity to control himself, he can live in his group without a problem.  

But there are the intrinsic soldiers, those with high virility and low control over it.   High virility is a part of their identity. 
They are a lurking danger inside the group, their instincts might overwhelm them and they would kill, rob, rape and upset the peace and cooperation inside the group that is needed for survival.  
Therefore armies are formed to accommodate their needs and give them a valve.  
The armies are regularly sent outside the group to give the intrinsic soldiers a chance to live according to their instincts, they are allowed to kill the enemies for the group safety, plunder for material benefits, and rape the out-group women to spare the women of their own group.    And instead of being criminals at home, they become heroes for the same behaviour with different targets elsewhere.   

An army is thus organized as a from of institutional hyper-virility.  
- aggression is enhanced by the training to fight, and by the systematic training to conquer any killing inhibition
- physical fitness is a vital goal in the training, critical thinking is repressed as it jeopardizes obedience
- hierarchy is a basic principle
- ingroup thinking is enhanced by sportive group competitions
- frequenting prostitutes is usually considered as normal behaviour of soldiers, and quite often the army organizes and facilitates it

Thus, an army creates and maintains an atmosphere of hyper-virility as its norm.    Intrinsic soldiers are accommodated and dominate.   Any person either lacking or openly questioning this hyper-virility is disturbing the core of the system.   Thus he will be either mobbed or expelled, if lucky, and killed, if in a war and unlucky.  Else he will become more and more an intrinsic soldier with time.    

Would people with low virility take control of an army, the army would loose its genuine original purpose of providing a valve for the intrinsic soldiers.    

So how can wars be stopped as long as so many men are born as intrinsic soldiers?  

Evolution has favored that different men are born with a wide variety of virility.   There was no need for rational control of high virility in ancient hordes and tribes.   Everybody contributed to the survival of the group, intrinsic soldiers by plundering, making slaves and killing enemies outside the tribe.   Those with less virility were farmers and craftsmen, and for those with little virility, there was still the role of healer or spiritual guru.   

But there is no place for intrinsic soldiers in a complex society living in overcrowded cities in times of peace.  
People still identify mainly as members of groups with limited members or very simple distinctive attributes.   Thus modern society is still fragmented into groups and subcultures like villages or neighbourhoods, sport teams and recreation clubs, different religions, political parties and many more.  
Only it is not possible to draw a strict in-group vs out-group line between friend and enemy.   Survival depends on the society as a whole, not on a group, and also people are not just members of one tribe but belong quite often to several groups.   The same person can be an out-group enemy and an in-group friend at the same time.   
In such a complex situation, virility needs to be controlled rationally or socially by rules and sanctions and there is no place for intrinsic soldiers.   

But as long as a peaceful society is in danger of being the target of attack, there is a (subjective) need to have an army to be ready for defence.   
This leads to a paradoxical and dangerous situation:   In the moment of war, intrinsic soldiers with hyper-virility are needed as being the most efficient.   Men with ethics and scruples do not win a war, if the other side has none.    But by training and forming such soldiers, and not providing them with a place to act out their reinforced instincts during times of peace, this creates a very difficult situation.   If they cannot be allowed to do harm outside their own society, they become dangerous.   

But some of those, who would become the most dangerous, stay away from this situation, as it does not suit them.   While for ancient tribes the army was a legal place to suit the instincts of born intrinsic soldiers, today the army has become more attractive and suitable for extrinsic soldiers.  
Born intrinsic soldiers quite often do not choose the legal military, but prefer groups, where they can live a life of hyper-virility illegally but without a need for self-control and with less danger of sanctions.   Criminal street gangs, motorcycle gangs are examples.    Many of them get their training for hyper-virility in jail, just as in ancient times the intrinsic soldiers got this in the army.  
Such gangs have gone back to the same basic situation, for which intrinsic soldiers are genetically adapted best for:  to survive as a small group in a dangerous and hostile environment.    But there is one difference: the ancient tribes put the intrinsic soldiers into an army, while the gang is the tribe and the army at the same time.