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Evolution, whether it is societal or biological, is a pattern formed by a series of movements or trends. The patterns or trends that I have gathered over the past several weeks brought me insight into a significant social evolution that I predict our species will migrate towards. The hypothetical evolution is as follows: the future "marriage" will consist of a multiple-person union (8-10 people) in which everyone is interloped. In other words, it will be a restricted polygamous-monogamous relationship. This movement will occur over the next two generations or so, because archaic ideas (dual union marriages) and artificial self-centered human emotions (polygamy, jealousy) have to be phased out, naturally of course - this is not a revolution.
Before I dig deeper into the theory, I believe to a certain extent Maslow's hierarchy of needs is correct, but only for the first two levels: body needs and security needs. Security and physical survival the reason we will always have a legal binding contract between the unions of individuals - also known as marriage. We are not at the stage, yet, in which the world is capable of "looking out for thy neighbor" - in other words, utopian communism, until this day occurs we will continue to have legal contracts ensuring the union of individuals, and this is why we will have a marriage between several people, so that these people can grow, love, and protect one another.
The next step is to list a set of trends that can prove the theory's correctness. Biologically, as stated in a previous article (Casual and Sexual), humans are polygamous. Divorces in the western world are increasing (in most of the civilized countries the divorce rate is increasing, slowly in some, very rapidly in others. Relatively to the population, about two and one half times as many divorces are granted now in the United States as were issued forty year ago). Consensual marital affairs are on the rise. The average age of marriage is increasing, this can be attributed to education inflation and individuals are afraid to commit because of monogamy. There is a decline in religious influence on societal behavior. Also, as history depicts, our marital state (a two-person union (monogamous), concubinage (polygamous), and polyandry (several husbands with one wife)) is strongly dependent on the environment. Concubinage existed because the relative scarcity of males, arising sometimes from numerous destructive wars, and sometimes from an excess of female births; the unwillingness of the husband to remain content when intercourse with one wife is undesirable or impossible; and unrestrained lustful cravings. Still another cause, or more properly a condition, is a certain degree of economic advancement in a people, and a certain amount of wealth accumulated by some individuals. The principle causes of polyandry, the union of several husbands with one wife, were the scarcity of women, due to female infanticide and to the appropriation of many women by polygamous chiefs and strong men in a tribe, and to the scarcity of the food supply, which made it impossible for every male member of a family to support a wife alone. A two people union was instated because of many external social factors: religion, pre-marriage pregnancies, poverty, and social dependencies (physical needs and security).
Therefore, because of the modern marital trends listed above, given the gradual weaker grip of religious institutions enforcing traditional marriages (same sex marriage is NOW legal in Canada), our societal dependencies (physical and security needs), and our polygamous nature, we can safely assume that the traditional marriage will evolve into something that will suit our new environment (condition). Given our persistent ability to naturally adapt to our existing environment, I believe the next type of martial deviation will consist of a multiple union between several individuals. Why you ask? Just read on!
Instead of listing facts, I will describe the advantages of this type of union, and how it harmonically satisfies our modern lifestyle and basic human needs from an economical, social, sexual, and family standpoint.
Economically, a large union of individuals will solidify more assets (houses, cars, properties). The average household income will increase because of added salaries. This will also be beneficial given the trend of today's high job market turnover rate. This will allow families to go from one job to the next without worrying about finances.
From a social standpoint, this type of marriage is closer to our nature. The family will be bigger, and it will resemble a clan (or herd) similar to the ancient tribes. For many reasons this will be beneficial, starting from establishing a democratic household, in which decisions are made as a group. There will be a reduction in domestic violence and abandonment. Ideas will be exchange more frequently and freely, thus increasing group learning. There will be an increase in social security, which will increase general acceptance and self-satisfaction.
From a family standpoint, to raise children will be much simpler. There will be more convenient daycare and burden of raising children will be more spread out. Families will be larger, and this will allow children to be more tolerant and understanding of others. Also, seeing that everyone is married to one another, naturally, a woman will have children with more than one partner. Thus, this will spread human genes more easily, and chances of propagated genetic illnesses will be less frequent. Also, a big family can increase cultural mixes, thus encouraging a family to learn more languages and adopt more cultures, in which will educate or expose people to more ethnicities.
Sexually, do I need to say more? We will finally be polygamous, but in a restrictive manner. It is still forbidden to fornicate with any member outside of the family, unless allowed by the other members of the family. Since jealousy will be less of an issue, and will be shared amongst the other members, it is quite possible that outside polygamy can even be socially accepted. I could go on about the benefits, but I'll leave that up to your imagination…
The intent of this article is to encourage reactions from the readers to prove or refute this hypothetical social evolution, please feel free to discuss this topic on the message board or email me. I am not completely confident that this is what the future holds, but what I do know, is that the traditional marriage will not be the same, it must adapt to the our new values and social structure.
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