“The Symmetry Principle” by Paul Lutus

A post came to mind that I read a few years back and continue to appreciate written by Paul Lutus on the subject of symmetry/reciprocity, so I wanted to share it with others. Excellent piece. Very illuminating of the natural condition of life on earth. Much as we humans like to pretend otherwise, striking working balances is necessary for a functioning society populated by psychologically and socially healthy individuals. Appears to be a fact of life, much to ideologues’ chagrin.

Tough titty said the kitty…and all that jazz. But it’s really not bad news, just important for us to wrap our minds around it and learn to recognize how symmetry operates within our species. Our social ties are endangered at this point, so now more than ever there’s a need for us to open our eyes to how much parasitic shit is going on around us, particularly how we’re treating one another.

Life out of balance. Gotta figure this out. No choice. The matter will be addressed one way or another, and I’d really prefer we find ways to heal and bond the best we’re able, because that may be all that gets us through. Hell, society might be damned by this point — who knows? But what gives a person’s life meaning are our connections and our contributions. Simple as that. If the majority can’t figure that out, well, we individually still must work with what we have.

My own long-term relationships mean the world to me. Hearing from and thinking about my friends and loved ones is a regular part of my everyday life. Thank God. I’ve been blessed to meet some good people who’ve really made a difference in my outlook in life. My grandparents molded me and loved me, and I absolutely came up feeling indebted to them for their generosity. Doesn’t mean they were perfect or we didn’t have our share of problems. But they genuinely loved me, and I genuinely love them. That’s probably the fundamental root shaping my life right there. So when I grew up and came across a way of making decent money, I felt the need to send money home. They needed it, I found a way to get it, we deeply love one another and they took me in from the start and made financial sacrifices to provide for me — so of course I give back and share what resources I gain access to. It is only natural. That’s the power of love.

It’s not just about money, but that can and does factor into relationships. We work it out where we have an incentive to do so. Love is a major incentive, even as we stumble and hurt one another at times. Nobody promised us a rose garden though, so we roll with what reality presents and (hopefully) learn to guide ourselves in the process.

Humans have certainly learned to complicate living, that’s for sure. Everything’s gotten so ramped up and taken to new heights to where the fundamentals get obscured so easily. Unfortunate, but apparently the way things have to go. Guess it’s a question of whether we can learn, both individually and collectively, from our mistakes that have led to major imbalances. It’s an open question…


Picture borrowed from his article.

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