Anthropology: A New Scope

Man's Four Relationships

Four relationships can be associated with man:

1-Man-Himself: Man has self-consciousness, and is able to change and evolve himself. It is this self-consciousness that has led to various branches in psychology. If man were not aware about himself, he could never know about the psychological effects of others. There a few laws that govern man's relationship with himself: 

a)High awareness of the fact that man is a part of the objective universe: Man must increase his knowledge of all of his physical and spiritual aspects, and remove any dark points about his existence. He should make the most of what he knows about himself. The fact that man's life is a part of the harmony of the universe is highly significant. If man reaches a level of awareness where he considers himself a part of the universe, he will find these qualities:

●He will not stupefy himself.

●He will avoid deceits that are destructive to his soul.

●Greed, boastfulness and arrogance will leave him.

●He will be able to use and enjoy beauties.

●Destructive rivalries and conflicts will be replaced by constructive competition.

●Man will achieve spiritual expansion.

●He will be able to assess means and ends correctly.

●He will interpret power accurately.

●Human societies will become a united family.

●Man will endeavor to spiritually develop and increase the knowledge of his fellow beings.

b)The necessity of accepting self-possession: Man must put sincerity into his relationship with his own self, and accept the truth.

c) Self-deceit is the worst way man can betray himself. If man does not accept reality, he will be betraying himself.

d)Maximum use of man's positive, constructive potentials: With self-awareness, man will never destroy his own positive potentials. He will not use his potentials in order to destroy other human beings; he will use them for his own spiritual development and serving others.

e)Affection toward others that arises out of human nature: Self-awareness makes people be kind to one another. By kindness here we mean affection rising out of sublimated emotions, not purely natural tendencies. By spiritual elevation, man sees himself in harmony with others in the universe, and thus begins to feel affection for them.

2-Man-The Society: Emile Durkheim has presented a rather extremist approach to man's relationship with the society. He believes that the human self is built by the society, and man has no independent identity regarding his social surroundings. In response, we must say that man possesses many potentials, and the society can merely develop or inhibit them. Though the society is able to take charge of radical identities, it cannot determine the identities. Preparing the grounds for man's physical and spiritual development – or hindrance – is the farthest the society can go. In other words, Man is born with a series of potentials, and many factors can influence them, one of which is the society and its various components. It can, however, trap man into fatalistic, unconscious factors guided by social management, which may prevent human beings from becoming self-alienated. 

3-Man-The Universe: If man thinks he has been created as a worthless being for a certain period of time and thus has no relationship whatsoever with the universe, he has in fact begun to destroy himself. With regard to man's relationship with the universe, he has several responsibilities:

a)Man must discover the universe and the orderly harmony governing it: Man's approach to the universe must be both general and detailed. From the detailed point of view, man studies and discovers the universe by means of his senses and technical devices, whereas through his general point of view he can understand concepts and meanings.

b)Taking the rules of gravity in the universe seriously and making use of them: The universe includes many physical and spiritual laws that cannot be ignored. Cause and effect, and also actions and reactions are examples of such rules, which man should use. 

c)The universe has a supernatural, divine aspect: The supernatural, divine aspect of the universe consists of its relationship with its creator. Understanding this aspect makes man's sense of duty and responsibility be aroused, and find a new, profound concept for life.

4-Man-God: Man can achieve perfection by means of his relationship with God. This is when man understands that God created him perfectly, so he should develop divine attributes in himself. If man realizes that divine perfection and greatness awaits him, he would never keep himself busy indulging with worldly affairs. 

In his relationship with God, man must take God's dominance and control on him seriously, for if man feels that his whole existence is overwhelmed by God, he will never deviate from the path of righteousness. 


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