What does it mean to be human? What does it mean to live an experience unique to every individual, yet everyone who has ever existed has participated in it? Today, we will be attempting to get a better grasp of these questions.
OPINION | To best answer what it means to live a human experience, we must first define what a human is outside the scientific term. According to Aristotle, to be human means to “be a being that has each of its two feet in a different ontological domain – one in the realm of natures, and one in the divine realm of the intellect.” To simplify his words, Aristotle is saying what makes us human is the ability to be a living being of this world but also capable of critical thinking. To simplify even further, the ability to ask “what is a human” is what makes us human.
So knowing now that a human is defined as a being capable of complex thought, what does it mean to live the human experience; What exactly is the experience of being human?
The most logical explanation for what the experience of being human would be after defining what a human is is that the experience of being human is simply to think. To be capable of existing within this reality and also being able to question it is an experience exclusive to humans. Still, yet every human has a wholly different experience than every other. No two people experience something the same way. Even if the experience is shared, such as a movie, every person in attendance had a vastly different experience.
To be able to perceive but also able to question is the entirety of the human experience. Living your life and wondering why certain things have happened is the act of being human. Pondering subjects such as how our universe came to be or how an individual will achieve their goals is our human quality.
In conclusion, the entire sum of our existence is to be able to think and learn and thus grow and repeat the cycle. Without the ability to question, humans would never have advanced from cave dwellers to faring the stars. The ability to question is the ability that allows individuals to achieve their goals, such as obtaining senior-level positions or creating a new product – the ability to ask how one will achieve these goals and thus find ways to do so is the essence of being human.