In Chapter 8 of my book, “The Pursuit of the Personal Renaissance Experience”, I highlight the similarities of biologic evolution to the evolution of social groups. I emphasize that individuals come together into groups to accomplish goals that they, as individuals, would have greater difficulty achieving. Social groups are then organized internally to accomplish more efficiently what the members wanted when they joined the group. They then become a “body” whose structure and function are analogous to the cellular elements the individual human organisms. The group’s structure and function can change in response to environment change as directed by conscious decisions made by its leaders. That is essentially the story of biologic evolution where the group’s current structure and function, that is the appearance of its “body” are dictated by changes in its governing concepts, which, in this analogy, are the “DNA” of its “body”.
So then, what is the goal of a political party? Why do people join them?
Of course, the goal is the acquisition of power. It does not matter if you are a Democrat, Republican, Independent, Liberal, Conservative, Libertarian, Socialist, Communist, or Nazi. You join these parties so that your group can control the way your country is run.
Power can be used in different ways. But, because power converts into money and more money increases the likelihood of our biologic success and less money decreases the likelihood of our biologic success, political battles can certainly stir up the emotions of the people involved.
So, one could become involved with political parties for various reasons. First is the prospect of acquiring political power for the reason presented in the previous paragraph. Another comes from the hope that one will receive some kind of benefit, either money itself or a service which has an intrinsic monetary value. Or one could support a party which promises to create conditions for us that serve our economic interests. That could be a union member or the ownership of a business. It could also be a group that wants to have their loans forgiven. Besides that, in democracies, political parties also provide a mechanism for people to feel virtuous if they believe in a party goal but do not benefit financially from the realization of that goal.
Political battles are like sporting contests. They require actions from the participants. If the active members of a political party do a better job in their respective roles, their party wins. So, each individual participant has the opportunity to improve themselves in order to achieve a better result. It is in the pursuit of this improvement where one can attain a personal renaissance experience, which in turn engenders that deep feeling of fulfillment or happiness. Winning is everything, so commitment to the actions is quite strong for most of the people involved which means that they are likely “living in the moment” as they carry out their activities.