Aries – Mental – Throat: WHAT FOR

What’s the point?

In this fascinating book, historian and archaeologist Ian Morris investigates the role of war throughout history. Starting from that premise, War, What Is It For? offers a sensational account of violence through the centuries and comes to the surprising conclusion that war has made the world a safer and more prosperous place. Morris explains that, in the Stone Age, there was a one in ten or even one in five chances of dying violently, whereas, in the 20th century, despite two world wars, the atomic bomb and the Nazi holocaust, less than one in a hundred people died at the hands of another.

Is it possible that something as dreadful as war has been a positive force in the advance of civilization? Morris exposes how, over fifteen thousand years, war has been instrumental in creating larger and more complex societies, which, in turn, have made the lives of their citizens more secure.

The overall conclusion of the work is that war has been beneficial to technological advances and the organization of human beings into peaceful societies. He believes that Leviathan-states, following Hobbes’ terminology, which are able to monopolize violence, allow for the security of citizens, and this security provides greater levels of prosperity and freedom.

Morris believes that war has made it possible to create ever larger, more open, and secure societies. Therefore: will war be able to end itself? The author argues that we are becoming more and more efficient in the art of war, as we are capable of eliminating millions of people in a few hours. So total war could eventually destroy humans. He believes that this is the reason why this type of conflict will become extinct, since «nobody wants to fight in a war they cannot win,» such as nuclear wars.

Finally, by understanding exactly how war works and its utility, we will be in the best possible position to know if, once and for all, it can be ended.

I invite everyone to read Matias’ post with the topic of the day.

Finally, I encourage everyone to reflect on the concept of the day. No one else but us can re-signify our own being!

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