Once there was a group of bees. They lived in a rather large hive, which was located in a fairly large forest. They had been living there for about a year, and were aware that their growing hive would need to find another place to live soon. Now bees are a particularly strange animal. Most animals live in a kind of social organization. Wolves, dolphins, hummingbirds, they all have their own set of social rules or instincts that they live by. Some closer knit than others, like dolphins or wolves. Some more loosely based on family ties as in hummingbirds or walrus’s.
Bees are an exception. Bees are much more influenced by social instincts than other creatures. It is not accident that the word for a group of bees, “swarm,” is used in mathematics to describe any number of different collections of elements that can collectively be described as a single entity. One hive of bees can almost be treated as a single animal, according to many scientists. Not unlike many different cells in the body of a mammal, each bee has a specific function, and does not stray from that function. A bee separated from its group will not survive very long.
It’s interesting to compare this to human beings. Several studies have been done (anecdotally of course) where human babies that have not been provided with a physical connection with others has been severely developmentally disabled. Humans need physical contact with other humans as much as we need food and water. Some argue that this need is much more pronounced in early life, but it never disappears altogether. We need each other.
And the particular group of bees in this particular story is no different. They, collectively, realized that with the growing number in their group, they needed to find a new home that would support them. And so they decided, collectively, to begin actively seeking new resources. Now when bees do something like this, a peculiar thing happens. Some of the bees whose job it is to find food, and then through an elaborate set of signals and dances alert the rest of the group where it is, must use this same bee technology to find a place that they deem suitable for their new home.
It’s kind of like when you develop a skill of some sort, and you realize that you can transfer this skill into another area of your life. Because you have certain skills, you can easily use this skill in another part of what you do. And it’s important to realize that you have these skills, and that there are many ways to use them.
So the bees, through their magic of bee technology, quickly shifted their behavior to achieve a new goal. And before they knew it, the collective had re established itself in a new home, which was bigger and brighter than ever before. And that is something to think about.