Your Incredibly Extended Family
What if everyone you see out in the street was not a complete stranger but part of your family? It might seem a strange idea, given how different people can look and be. Not to mention how indifferent they seem to our set of needs. To consider them even remotely as family seems like a quantum leap.
Yet, whatever your version of the origins of humanity, one theme comes through. At some early stage there were only a mere handful of people in existence. From those few folk every one of us (all 7 billion of us) have come.
So you see, we really are family. Scientists delving into our DNA have discovered that the greatest differences between races is less than from any one person to another. Which is to say, there is very little genetic difference between us.
What does that mean in practice? Well, you know that weird guy you keep seeing? He is actually related to you. And that person you admire so much? Yep, they are part of your family.
The fact that we are related, however, does not bring us close to one another. For that to happen, we would all need to recognize our connectedness and act accordingly.
But those folk who are hostile (and even downright dangerous) aren’t people we’d like to see much less be with. Still, that’s life in the world’s biggest extended family. You can expect to have plenty of everything and everyone all mixed together in a higgledy-piggledy mess.
To me, the significance of this relationship that we have with others changes the way I feel about people. They aren’t so remote, even if they act that way. Instead, they are closer than they think and I find myself recognizing commonalities that we naturally share.
So there’s no need to feel alone in a crowd. Wherever you go, you are surrounded by your own massively extended family. Though they haven’t met you yet, you needn’t forget that we all share this fundamental connection.
Happily, most of your kin are actually pretty nice to deal with and a great many are utterly wonderful to meet. But regardless whom you relate to, the connection is indelibly written into all of our genes. We are part of one remarkably substantial clan, and the more we all understand that, the better life will be.
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