Of course there is God - man is so ill-suited to life on this planet

Nature is a delicate balance. An intricate dance of atoms and organisms, all interacting, all living and dying in order for life to thrive. Over countless millions of years natural selection* has sorted itself out, cast off what it doesn't need, improved what works. Slowly, imperceptibly, all this is accomplished.

So, what was it thinking when it came up with man? Within several-thousand years or so of civilization - barely a moment in the great scheme of things - man has succeeded in screwing up this planet beyond repair. Of course, evolution doesn't "think", it just does. Well, in a world where blind chance does an astonishingly admirable job of maintaining balance, man becomes an embarrassing aberration.

Man lives 70 or 80 years if he is lucky. From birth he is on his way to the grave, and he knows it. He cannot even enjoy the bliss of ignorance. It is not a life of ease, it is a battle. Job was right when he said, "Man, born of woman, is short-lived and glutted with agitation."

We cannot simply exist, we must survive. We cannot pluck leaves from the trees to eat, or get down on all fours and feast on the endless supplies of grass. Our stomachs will not tolerate it. Man must prepare his meals - cook his meat, mix ingredients, heat it with fire. He cannot kill a beast with his bare hands and feast on the raw carcass for a week. Our delicate constitutions would collapse before too long.

We can no longer find a glistening clear river and drink deeply to our satisfaction without paying the price with some gastric infection. The simple act of lapping water has become an ordeal that necessitates the introduction of several tools. Water is not there collected. It now needs something to collect it, hold it, boil it, cool it, store it. This precious commodity we rely on to live...we have poisoned it.

Animals defecate anywhere. Much of it is re-used, or fertilises the ground. Some is eaten by other creatures. Man cannot defecate into his water source like a herd of cattle. He tried that once and got struck down with cholera. Man must go outside the camp. His dung is a stinking cesspit of disease. And this he must do every single day, several times. He has made it his life's work to figure out how to safely dispose of his bodily waste.

Man walks upright, his dangly collection front and centre. He has studied torture and knows that these can be a source of great pain. And there they are, ripe for the kicking. Animals rough and tumble for dominance, they don't go about kicking each other in the crotch. Yet...we walk upright. Exposed. It's almost as if we were not meant to fear one another.

Do animals feel pain? Do they suffer? Maybe so, but man is able to dread pain, to imagine suffering. He fantasizes about his own mode of death.

Our hairless body is useless in any temperature. It burns in the heat and freezes in the cold, rendering us either delirious or frostbitten. We lose our minds or our extremities. To combat this we must seek shelter and clothe ourselves. What we have is not enough. Only one or two indigenous tribes can wonder about naked - and they are "savages". Even these can be coy, fashioning a little strip to conceal the nethers. This precious, exposed, area is the source of man's progeny. It matters to him. He experiences a yearning he cannot explain. He can procreate all year round. But whereas animals give birth with relative ease, man has managed to turn it into an ordeal which must be micromanaged under threat of having your offspring removed from your care should you deviate from society's norms.

Women carry sustenance for newborns but we are educated out of using these beyond a few months. Cows milk and a bottle are the baby's first introduction to our consumer supply-and-demand culture.

Monkeys have a whale of a time swinging from branch to branch. Bonobos lie around having sex. They don't concern themselves with protection. Perhaps they were the origin of AIDS. They don't give a damn. Even assigning them that amount of feeling is anthropomorphising them. They are completely unaware. They are not keeping a tally of how many have died from AIDS or any other STD. Death goes unnoticed. Only for man has death become a matter to be feared and delayed. Man has killed so many in his futile quest to put off the inevitable.

Man is only good for gaping in awe, and he's not even particularly good at that. He is aware of his weakness in the face of nature. Everything from the largest mammal to the tiniest insect has him running screaming for the hills. The invisible virus kills him daily.

Perhaps it was disgust that motivated the first man to fashion a pointed stick out of a branch and kill his first animal. One legend has it that it was Nimrod who first hunted for sport. Genesis 10:8 describes him as "a mighty hunter in opposition to God." He acted not out of love, but out of guilt and shame. "My father runs from the beast...I feel something I do not have the vocabulary to describe..." This feeling would turn out to be humiliation/shame which in turn led to anger and violence. And the pointed stick or club could be used on other men. It could be used to subjugate others. This in no way emulates the animal kingdom because they do not have to cope with humiliation, emasculation, evisceration. There may be an alpha, but the rest go about their business regardless.

In his misguided quest to improve life man has merely succeeded in enslaving man. He has made him poor and rendered him impotent. We can no longer look after our own needs and desires. We are beholden to "professionals", often under pain of punishment.

We have music, art, imagination. No. Some have these things, the rest consume. The ones who have them have them after training, being taught, blessed with natural talent. We have to build up muscles, finely tune our bodies. Would you prefer to swing through the trees with the greatest of ease, or soar through the skies, swim like a dolphin, or gallop and leap with the strength of a horse? We don't say, "Been there, done that," we stretch for those goals. Or do you prefer to sit in the cinema eating popcorn and being spoon fed the fruits of someone else's imagination? We can't recognise talent unless it has a price attached to it.

Man has the capacity to love, but instead he hates. He trusts no-one. He is suspicious. He is repulsed by bad breath and body odour. Our senses are offended. Our quality of life is profoundly affected by the way we treat one another yet we choose to treat one another with anything between indifference and suspicion - unless there is a financial remuneration at stake. We appreciate the truism, "The love of money is the root of all sorts of injurious things," yet money continues to be the bedrock upon which this system is based. We have managed to put a price-tag on human existence. Every limb and organ has a financial equivalent. Consequently, man lives in a constant state of believing he is going to be harmed, inconvenienced, or have his precious possessions stolen.

He has evolved to agonise, to question, "Why do I exist?" Even if he reaches the conclusion that there is no reason, he can only arrive at it by agonising.

Certainly, man is ill-suited to life on this earth. Unless, of course, man is in a state of transition. Like Australopithecus or homo neanderthalensis, perhaps homo sapiens are destined to be left behind too. Perhaps nature will right itself and eradicate mankind so that life can survive and thrive.

Unless it was never intended to be this way at all. Unless man was supposed to live with compassion and love. Perhaps love is meant to be the driving force for man's survival. Not to do things in order to be reimbursed, but because we want to. Do you know how to set a bone? Then set a bone out of love, and not because it is your job. By all means seek to improve our lot, but then make these available to all for free. After all, it doesn't matter how stupendous man's technological achievements have been, if he has only succeeded in creating items that are planned to be obsolete and yet cannot be successfully disposed of without contributing to the planet's poisonous condition, he is merely an idiot.

*Or whatever is the currently favoured evolutionary theory