They aren’t Big Questions when you really do evaluate the evidence of wherewe came from and how a species survives.
The smallest and simplest answers, if true, can always be built into big things, but will remain as fundamental no matter how they are tested.
- A species will survive if it adds more usefulness to the environment and its offspring than it consumes in resources.
- Humans are not exempt from responsibility to be a contributing part of our natural environment. We may isolate ourselves from tigers and disease temporarily with cities, creating enemies of each other, but in the long term, consumptionism kills all things that don’t pay back to the system.
- We instinctively desire to be useful toward our own future: that’s what hoarding, altruism and caring for baby things come from. We don’t need happiness: we do need self-determined security of our person, place and children.
These are answers to all of your questions. Capitalism is just one offshoot of consumptionism. The opposite of consumptionism is generosity. The opposite of capitalism is sales tax.
People will only make better choices when the better choice is available to them and they are capable of making those choices.
Nature will bat last in every game we play. We might want to start playing on it’s team again.