Individual creativity is all.
All religions go back to an individual life. No exceptions. Only later do institutional religions feed on that unique life like bacteria on a wound. Theologians (mostly old men in dresses) invent ways to standardize the quantum jump intuitions of the original individual life into intellectualized "game rules" (all religions are mostly convoluted conceptual/games), and the transcendent experiences and breakthroughs of out of the box creativity are systematically buried alive.
The history of civilization (or the lack of it) is not kept alive by arrogant holy books and crystallized social game rules, but IN SPITE OF THEM.
How else has less than one percent of the human race (greed vampire elites) managed to suffocate and subjugate the all the rest of us? Said differently, how have the "Haves" been able to blatantly enslave the entire human race (the Have Not's, the middle and lower classes, etc.) from the beginning of recorded history?
It's for the same reason that you stay in a toxic marriage, or never break free from a dysfunctional family, or blubber your lips in a religious cult. And it's for exactly the same reason that you turn to "establishment politics" to transform a world in which parasitical international elites live like literal Greek Gods.
And the reason is because WE CHOOSE conditioning and authority over our own birthright intuitions, intelligence, and creativity.
This is so simple. So long as we the play the game of life (which certainly isn't a "game") with disempowering and castrating rules, laws, and religious "commandments", we will to that precise degree be obedient androids. Certainly, pragmatic conditioning can be highly useful and appropriate, but you don't stay in toxic marriages or deify elite dictated politics because of pragmatic conditioning.
Indeed, the "rules" version of life was elaborately and consciously invented by astronomically rich people to program the human race to have only game/social identities, because to the that precise degree they have been weaned away from their own innate creativity, intelligence, and courage.
However, human beings are INDIVIDUALS, not members of a set. In the dog/tail analogy humans nearly always identify with the tail. Well then, who/what is the dog? That's easy. It's that straight jacket of rules, laws, and social authority which is a Dictatorship of the Rich, i.e., basically all countries, past and present -- very much including the United States of America.
The tragedy is that we have so willingly and passively accepted this straight jacket version of human existence.
But civilization, at least at its best, is growth and creativity. It's that legacy of a tiny percentage of human beings who quantum jump out of the box of hammering conditioning.
The deep dynamic of human history is that of individual creativity and their magnificent worldly manifestations, e.g., the American Constitution, the music of Bach, quantum mechanics, St Francis of Assisi, the self portraits of Rembrandt, and even knowing how to make a great pair of boots, etc., etc., are so marvelous and pregnant with wisdom, kindness, and sanity, that they manage to just barely hold at bay what we might call the Freudian "Id" (limitless, subhuman, cruelty, greed, and violence).
We should be very, very clear that elite/establishment politics (our ONE party dem/pug system) is all of a piece with the Bush/neocon/fascist Heart of Darkness. These pathetic and meaningless political parties are part of the problem, not the solution. This is now apparent to barnyard animals.
IF (and, alas, "if" is the word), civilization and the planetary ecosystem survive this eight year blood sucking orgy of the vampire rich, which is literally and VERY rapidly killing not only the American Republic, but Mother Nature as well, it will be because a tiny collection of individuals (fewer in number even than the elites) are and have been for millennia fighting the good fight with awesome risk taking and individual creativity.
Conversely, what will NEVER save civilization and the planet is implicit and repetitious social conditioning, elaborately constructed by fascist/elites to transform Homo sapiens into insect-brained puppets.
Civilization or the human “Id”. Freud knew all about this and he wasn't hopeful.
At least civilization is a ball which history and evolution are still juggling, but it will almost certainly survive only with a dramatic increase of creative individuals, because the challenge of avoiding human extinction does not now and never will have a "social/political solution". As an ancient Zen Master once put it: "You don't wipe off blood with blood."
We're born alone; we die alone; and we must rise to the challenge of saving civilization and the Earth alone. Creativity doesn't come from a political committee. It comes from that place which has been described as "being alone with the beating of my heart." Relationships can be good, bad, or otherwise, but they have nothing to do with individual creativity.
Pick your phrase of choice: Heart of Darkness, the anti-Christ, international vampire elites, the resurrected Nazi Party, the Bush & Cheney Royal Families, murder-in-the-name-of-God religious fanatics, Republicans, or the Freudian Id, but the only reality which can restrain this unimaginable evil (much like the force field around nuclear fusion) are conditioning-transcending creative individuals.
More specifically, it all comes back to transcending fascist/elite and religious fanaticism brain washing and as Sir Gawain put it in one of the sublime 12th Century Holy Grail legends: "We must seek the Grail (transcendence) by going into the forest alone, not as a group, where it is darkest, and where there is no path." The English poet, T. S. Elliot, implied in his wonderful poem, "The Wasteland", that NOT to do this is to reduce the human condition to a land of inauthenticity and soul death.