Are you familiar with the theory of Maslow regarding the pyramid of human needs? The idea attends to set the foundations of human behavior across the years. It faces the needs as a chain where each person has to fulfill one need in order to move on to the next one. It appears that the needs form the shape of a pyramid where the needs that arise at the bottom of the pyramid are more fundamental. As we move to the upper layers of the pyramid, we meet needs that are unnecessary for everyone. The theory has been an object of criticism as social sciences developed, and other views started to stand out.
However, it is still the most popular theory that has attempted to explain our society universally so that it is accurate for all the world’s places. The exciting part of this theory is that the whole community seems to appear the proposed tendency. As you will read the article, you will notice that it applies in almost any case. In this article, we would like to introduce you to the basics of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.
- Physical needs
At the bottom of the pyramid, we have the physical needs that each creature, not only humans, have to cover to survive. In this box, we include everything that is necessary not only for our survival, such as food, water, roof, and sleep but also for our reproduction, meaning sex.
Once we complete all of these crucial tasks comes the matter of consistency. As our population grew and we had the luxury to organize our societies, we started thinking about what we can do to cover these needs regularly. This practically means that we had to ensure that we will always have access to food. This is how we stopped hunting and turned into agriculture. It is also the reason to get married and make sure the reproduction will continue. Every detail of our survival, from food to roofing, etc., had to be secured. This is actually what will provide us with security and the calmness that comes from the assumption that we are not threatened now, neither will we be in the future.
- Love and belonging
So, the vital threats have been eliminated. What do we do next? Since we are confident that we have protected everything related to life, we need to focus our attention on our destiny as a species. This is where socialization makes its appearance. We don’t care only about whether we will survive as individuals; we also care about what will happen to our children. How will the next generation function if we don’t unite? If you think about it, socializing is not about having friends. It first appeared in society in an effort to survive as humans in the future. It is a way to better secure that the reproduction will be successful. Not only do we care about having children but also about whether they will be able to survive when the time comes. We grumble about how cruel the world is, but the truth is that deaths due to wars and human violence have been ten times reduced over the years.
The next step is to help our confidence grow. We need to make society see our value and recognize our contribution. It sounds vain compared to all the other things we intended to do above, but it is not that simple. This follows the pattern that animals have. In their world, it is common for one animal from the herd to be responsible for the whole company. What this reassures is that the stronger, the best, and the more capable will pass its genes to the next generations. Now, since we are of higher intelligence compared to animals, we may not act the exact same way, but we indeed attempt to dominate our way of thinking to the rest of the world, and we expect that the most talented will stand out.
Lastly is what we call self-actualization. This reminds us of a more spiritual and maybe religious approach. It has to do with realizing one’s self, but it also includes concepts, such as ambitions, partner acquisition, and developing talents. It is the last step of a man’s purpose in the world, and it is a luxury to fulfill it.
Written by Anna Siampani.