Humans like to think that we are becoming better at everything we are or do. We must be more advanced than our ancestors, because we have evolved. We are more modern, so we must be more intelligent. We have iPhones, and they did not.
Unfortunately, this cannot be true. Great discovers were made by early humans, without the benefit of the knowledge that we take for granted. Great thinkers had thoughts that are common for many. On the other hand, education in modern countries is watered down, compared to curricula experienced by students of 19th century United States (that’s the 1800’s for non-math geniuses). I recently saw the requirements for graduation from a prairie high school. Note the word prairie, and picture a one-room structure in a snow storm, without hot and cold running computers and where everyone is not a winner. Despite having attended a strict, demanding private school and having graduate and post-graduate degrees, I would not be able to pass that test. Knowing what kids get fed in schools today, I know that standards have been relaxed significantly.
One must merely check ancient texts, all based on lore and more-ancient stories (various Bibles, Confucius, Beowulf, etc. I did not mention the Koran, because that is 600 years younger than its competitor and uses much of that tale’s text.) Earlier philosophers and teachers are still quoted and misquoted. Their teachings reveal that human thought has not changed, although human experience has grown and expanded.
Physical and emotional aspects, such as fear, love, hate, hunger, cold, and so on have not changed. Since the first tribal grouping, various organizations have attempted, with various degrees of success, to harness and/or inhibit various emotions and to control fellow humans. Humans have reacted in the same manner all along: some comply and some revolt.
I have no idea what my point is. I guess I want to point out that, perhaps, arrogance is an ancient human trait. I could spend some time thinking about why it needed to evolve, but can’t be bothered. I’ll leave that to folks that think they’re smarter...
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.