From philosophy to neurology, from psychology to religion, from anthropology to biology, it has been argued that humans are, in their very nature, social beings.
And who are we to refute than, when our everyday lives are composed of enjoying our friends’ selfies, investing in romantic relationships, looking out for the next generation, and even engaging in social media for good causes?
The social nature of humans is embedded in our personal lives, the institutions and structures that govern them, our cultures, our histories, our belief systems, the way we acquire and share knowledge, and well, basically everything.
Including the very makeup of our brains. This fascinating finding in neuroscience has recently come up: our brains are inherently social.
Neuroscientists investigated the human brain in its non-active state i.e. when the person takes a break and lets his brain rest. When a person has down time, his brain turns on a system called the “default network.”
According to Matthew Lieberman, a famous social psychologist and neuroscientist: “The default network directs us to think about other people’s minds—their thoughts, feelings, and goals.”
Basically, whenever we try to chill out, our brains’ automatic response is to think of other people. This mirrors the history of our evolution as humans, since we all know that species which work well together have definitely shown more chances of survival.
Interestingly enough, tracing the origin of our social nature is simply evolutionary.
But then again, through thousands and thousands of years, this evolutionary fact must have manifested in other things.
For instance, in the way we experience pain. Social loss and social rejection may seem different from, say, bruises or wounds, but our brains seem to process them the same way.
And here’s a good explanation behind that:
A broken leg and a broken heart seem like very different forms of pain. But there are evolutionary reasons why our brains process social pain the way they process physical pain. Pain is a sign that something is wrong. Social pain signals that we are all alone—that we are vulnerable—and need to either form new connections or rekindle old ones to protect ourselves against the many threats that are out there.
No man is an island, indeed. While we definitely have basic needs like water, food, air, and shelter, social connections may as well be in the same category.
That’s what we can say for the way humans scientifically evolved as a species. Unfortunately, the way human society has evolved seems to be counterintuitive.
Over the years, our lifestyles have grown to be more individualistic, partly due to the economy, partly due to technology, though other factors come into play.
The point is this: we steadfastly seem to grow apart from each other, against our evolution and our biology.
These days, we seem to keep defying our social nature as we let our social connections dissolve. We could spend a long amount of time working our bodies off, forgetting whom we work for.
We pursue our ambitions, sometimes putting aside our loved ones, losing our grip on the fact that we won’t have the motivation and inspiration to succeed in the first place without them.
We convince ourselves to be content seeing each other as pixels on computer or phone screens.
BeepBeep Nation has an answer to this dilemma.
It ironically reverses the current trend in technology of creating distance between people, and instead uses the very potential of technology in developing our social nature.
By providing a platform to connect people who need help and people who can offer it, the BeepBeep Nation app seeks to give its users the opportunity to be as social as they want and need to be.
The provision of help through the BeepBeep Nation app requires an actual physical meetup between a requestor and a helper, so in addition to encouraging a culture of kindness, it also intensely promotes face-to-face human interactions.
Since its very mission of making the world a better place functions on the basis of our social nature as humans, BeepBeep Nation urges us to make the most of it in our everyday lives.
I’m sure it will take time to reflect on the social nature of humans, so while doing some philosophical thinking for yourself, be sure to check that out as well.
My final two cents: it might even be better to live out your ideas through BeepBeep Nation. Instead of merely musing about it, let’s participate in a world that is truly more social than ever!