Homo Imaginens, not Sapiens, we never know enough


Homo Imaginens,* not Sapiens, we never know enough,
We are the imagining species
Living in & with all our different imagined realities**
that all our ancestors & we have imagined, created
& sustained, & that we’ve sometimes renewed & invigorated
& sometimes’ve let get stuck in stagnation; some we continued
& some we discarded, & some we now need to discard
& some we now need to imagine
if a truly humane humanity is to evolve & prevent
more murders & massacres in the name of one imagined reality
or another, & if a truly civil civilization
is to at last evolve on this planet
before it becomes uninhabitable

we imagined words, we imagined language
we imagined spirits, we imagined spirit
we imagined gods, we imagined God,
we imagined families, nations, peoples,
we imagined enemies of our groupings
we imagined borders, fences, walls

we imagined agriculture, manufacture, money,
commerce, industry, brand names,
limited liability companies, corporations,
we imagined buildings, architectures, arts,
literatures, musics, movies, low-tech, high-tech,
sciences, academies, parliaments, governments,
unions, mutual aid societies,
profits&power-seeking bodies:
everything humans have created they first imagined.

As individuals, we’ve imagined our characters,
our families, our friends & our circles;
as members of communities, we’ve imagined our identities,
our narratives about everything we think we’re part of.

As a species, we’ve imagined everything that humans
have created on this planet,
never knowing all the possible outcomes.
Often not even imagining some of them.
Like where our world’s come to now…


* Since our species is generally named in Latin, “Imaginens”, which is not a real Latin word (I had to make it up) should be be its name, rather than sapiens, or Huizinga’s ludens.

** I take this term from Yuval Noah Harari’s fine mind-opening book Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (a must-read book, I feel, in which he explains how mankind has lived & developed thru structures that are all imagined realities; for a brief review see this link).

My thanks to Martha Brett for sharing the meme on Facebook.

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