The goal of man, the lowest common denominator of all his activities, the dynamic principle of his existence, has long been sought. Should such an answer be discovered, it is inevitable that from it many answers would flow. It would explain all phenomena of behavior; it would lead toward a solution of man’s major problems; and, most of all, it should be workable.
Such an answer has been discovered. It is:
The Dynamic Principle of Existence Is Survival.
The goal of life can be considered to be infinite survival. Man, as a life form, can be demonstrated to obey in all his actions and purposes the one command: “Survive!”
It is not a new thought that man is surviving. It is a new thought that man is motivated only by survival.
That his single goal is survival does not mean that he is the optimum survival mechanism which life has attained or will develop. The goal of the dinosaur was also survival and the dinosaur isn’t extant anymore.
Obedience to this command, “Survive!” does not mean that every attempt to obey is uniformly successful. Changing environment, mutation (change in the form or nature of something) and many other things work against any one organism attaining infallible survival techniques or form.
What would be the optimum survival characteristics of various life forms? They would have to have various fundamental characteristics, differing from one species to the next just as one environment differs from the next.
This is important, since it has been but poorly considered in the past that a set of survival characteristics in one species would not be survival characteristics in another.
The methods of survival can be summed under the headings of food, protection (defensive and offensive) and procreation. There are no existing life forms which lack solutions to these problems. Every life form errs, one way or another, by holding a characteristic too long or developing characteristics which may lead to its extinction. But the developments which bring about successfulness of form are far more striking than their errors. The naturalist and biologist are continually resolving the characteristics of this or that life form by discovering that need rather than whim governs such developments. The hinges of the clam shell, the awesome “face” on the wings of the butterfly, have survival value.
The goals of man, then, stem from the single goal of survival through a conquest of the material universe. The success of his survival is measured in terms of the broad survival of all.
The Goal of Man
The Individual and His Dynamics
Suggestions for Further Study