People are born with natural instincts to protect themselves & their property and to seek to reproduce. Other behaviors are learned through trial and error or communication from others that say the behavior works.
I agree with this last statement. I think other behaviors are learned through trial and error. But not necessarily all. For example, in my house my kids have learned that if they go to bed and stay in bed (which any parent will tell you is about impossible to achieve) they will get a reward. They often will get a piece of candy the next day or something like that. And if they get out of bed when they are not supposed to, they get the wooden spoon (I know, I'm mean). Now, they learn through trial and error and yet continue, over, and over, and over, and over, and over to get out of bed when they are not supposed to. It is not logical. It makes no sense. I reward them for doing one behavior and punish the other, and yet they still continue in folly.
This example can be applied to all of humanity. We often, as humans, are like dogs that return to our own vomit to eat it. Gross but true. My way of understanding this is that we are basically bad, not good, and that we tend towards bad. We don't drift the other way. This explains why there is so much wrong in the world; shootings, corrupt governments, theft on a national scale.
"Be a listener only, keep within yourself, and endeavor to establish with yourself the habit of silence, especially on politics." -Thomas Jefferson
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