Trusting the world
Homo sapiens evolved to think of people as divided into us and them.“Us” was the group immediately around you, whoever you were, and “them” was everyone else. In fact, no social animal is ever guided by the interests of the entire species to which it belongs. No chimpanzee cares about the interests of the chimpanzee species, no snail will lift a tentacle for the global snail community, no lion alpha-male makes a bid for becoming the king of all lions, and at the entrance of no beehive can one find the slogan: “Worker bees of the world—Unite!”
But over the last few millennia, Homo sapiens became more and more exceptional in this respect. People began to cooperate on a regular basis with complete strangers, whom they imagined as “brothers” or “friends.” Today, the whole of humankind has become a single network of cooperation. Though even today not all people believe in the same god or obey the same government, they are all willing to use the same money. Osama bin-Laden, for all his hatred of American culture, American religion, and American politics, was very fond of American dollars. How did money succeed where gods and kings failed?