Das Ich und seine zwei Welten.
Zur evolutionsbiologischen Dialektik der Kultur-Natur-Beziehung
Jahrbuch für Ethnomedizin und Bewußtseinsforschung 5.1996:159-212
The I and its two worlds.
On the evolutionary-biological dialectic of the culture-nature relation
##The development of human cultural history can be interpreted as a meaningful continuation of phylogeny from the perspective of evolutionary biology. The appearance of the semantically organized consciousness represents a stage of development which is advantageous in the fight for survival. Furthermore, the formation of the verbal space of consciousness in man is connected with the splitting off of civilized man from nature and with an alienation of his conscious I from the unconsciously acting instinctive parts. The hypothesis examined here sees the origin of these tensions in the system 'man' as well as in the relation human civilization/nature in the inadequate, verbally anchored neocortical representation of the inner and outer world. Compared with other mammals, man is born in a very immature state and is being exposed to the influences of the external world before the cortical scheme of his own body-parts is ripe and functioning. The hypothesis is put forward that this leads to a fundamental mingling of the perception areas of the 'inside' and the 'outside', which can be clearly seen in early cultures: own affects are projected outwards, while external natural forces are perceived internally. These erroneous connections are fixed through the verbal definition of the world and the symbolic object-permanency associated with it, and they are maintained by the cultures on different stages of development. The correction of the world-definition takes place with the help of religious images or cultural leitmotivs, which are attributed to the surfacing of increasingly early, preverbal experiences down to birth. The integration of the birth experience, which is nowadays visible both in psychosomatic symptoms and on the level of social phenomena, is interpreted as a cultural coming of age. The example of Christian symbolism should serve to illustrate the developmental stages of the I of European stamp and their possible further development as biologically substantiated process.
Keywords: cultural evolution, evolutionary biology, I-development, perinatal psychology##, religion and biology.