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Humans and Lemmings

Lemmings are small rodents, about 15 centimeters long, that live in the tundras of northern Europe and Asia.

This species has the particularity of suddenly undertaking collective migrations for no apparent reason that end with a mass suicide in the waters of the sea.

The enigma that this behavior posed to zoologists is so singular that they, after trying to provide explanations that proved insufficient, preferred to remove it. But one of the most lucid minds of the twentieth century, Primo Levi questioned the phenomenon and provided a convincing interpretation of it.

We take it for granted that all living beings wish to continue living: in the lemmings for some reason this will has failed and the instinct that drove them to live has turned into a death instinct.

I believe that something similar is happening today to another species of living beings, what we call Homo sapiens.

Collective suicide occurs here – as befits a species that has replaced instinct with language and an endosomatic impulse with a series of devices external to the body – in an artificial and complicated way, but the result could be the same.

Human beings cannot live if they do not give themselves reasons and justifications for their lives, which in every age have taken the form of religions, myths, political beliefs, philosophies and ideals of all kinds.

These justifications seem to have fallen today – at least in the richest and most technologized part of humanity – and the humans find themselves perhaps for the first time, reduced to their pure biological survival, which, it seems, prove unable to accept.

This alone can explain, why, instead of assuming the simple, lovable fact of living side by side, we felt the need to instill an implacable sanitary terror, in which life without any more ideal justifications, is threatened and punished at every moment by disease and death. And this alone can explain that, although the industries that produce them, have stated that it is not possible to predict the effects of vaccines in the long term, because it has not been possible to comply with the foreseen procedures and the tests on genotoxicity and carcinogenicity will only end in October 2022; during which millions of people were subjected to an unprecedented mass vaccination.

It is perfectly possible – even if it is by no means certain – that in a few years the behavior of humans will be similar to that of lemmings and the humans will be on the verge of extinction.

July 28, 2021

Source: Giorgio Agamben – QUODLIBET

  • Translated