Read this through, then see what the implications of it are below.
This is about long term human survival and I repeat over and over that that is the purpose of the book. I also repeat that this is conservative, because life is the ultimate conservatism and change for the sake of change is dangerous. The description includes that we must also make a future that we will like and can easily adapt to. If we make a world that is too weird, we will endanger our survival. So most of the book is about what humans require for survival and how we can make a world that provides that. There are two other important points though. The first is "why" and that is addressed more later. I find that the second point needs to be addressed early on because it shapes so much of this discussion. There are multiple solutions to many problems of survival, but how do we chose which to use? It is something of a "How" question as in "how do I conduct myself" or "how do I chose what is right", but since it comes from deep in our moral instincts, it doesn't translate well. I think there are philosophical implications to it as well that would translate to "Purpose, the question of "what is my purpose in life"? In a sense your purpose in life is survival, but that gives very limited moral direction and more is needed. Survival is the goal of all life, but what about humans? We are more than animals. Do we need to do more than survive? Yes, but what? These are old problems. Humans have done an enormous amount of work to solve these problems, such as the problem of truth is addressed in the West by the techniques of Critical Thinking developed by the Ancient Greeks. A major portion of this book is sifting through human knowledge to find existing solutions. Did anyone answer this question of purpose or how to conduct oneself? Again, coming from the Ancient Greeks, I think we have an answer and that is Beauty. Please, beauty is so much more than physical beauty as much as survival is about so much more than individual survival. Beauty defines a quality. There is physical beauty, beauty of voice, athletic, intellectual, mechanical, beauty of the arts, beauty of nature and there is even moral beauty. When I first explored survival as an instincts, I found it to be expressed as a value and beauty was part of that. Simple solutions can be nice, but we learn that simple is not always the best. We judge the quality of a solution as elegant, which may or may not be the simplest solution. In terms of morality and survival, we must judge between right and wrong, but to judge between paths that are right, how we will do something, we must judge based on beauty.
In a sense, this might be read as "if you are going to do something, do it right", but actually it is more. This is going to be part of replacing the status that we have traditionally gotten from our occupations. Another purpose of it (with almost the same meaning as the last sentence) is that it will give us a way to compete that is fairly safe. Competition is good as long as it does not lead to cheating (or unnecessary death). This also encourages personal development - physically, athletically, intellectually, skills and even morally. Another purpose to this pursuit of beauty is that without it, humanity is not going to find out a lot more than it already knows. It is those pursuing excellence that find new vistas. To paraphrase J. Kennedy about going to the Moon "we do not do this because it is easy, we do it because it is hard". That defines not just a challenge for individuals, but a challenge for all of humanity. There is where we will find our future.
This book is about creating an understanding. Without that description, the understanding would be hard to achieve.