Myth of human Nature / Mythos der menschlichen Natur / Mito da natureza Humana / Mito de la naturaleza Humana

Human nature refers to the distinguishing characteristics including ways of thinking, feeling, and acting, which Humans tend to have naturally. The questions of whether there are natural characteristics, what these natural characteristics are, and what causes them are among the oldest and most important questions in philosophy, economy, ethics, politics, theology and science.

Human nature is a central question in Chinese philosophy. Human nature was considered by Confucius and Mencius to be essentially good. The theory of the original goodness of Human beings dominated Confucian thought. However Hsun Tzu taught that Human nature was essentially evil. As suggested by these contrasting views, the question of Human nature has generated a long debate among Chinese thinkers.

We have evolved behaviors that increase our chances of survival and reproduction. When in a stable and safe environment with enough food, having morality sustains our place in the community of Humans. When in highly stressful, resource poor environments, we’ll step on whoever is in front of us to survive.

The exceptions to this rule are the five percent of the population who are pathologically selfish like Madoff, and another five percent who are nearly pathologically virtuous like Mother Teresa. The rest of us live somewhere between good and evil (with or without music).

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