I do not deny that seeking leadership in social orders is also something humans have a propensity for. Leadership is something different to having government. The word 'leader' does not imply that you are compelled to obey the leader - you can always leave. 'Ruler' is something different.
The utility of leadership and the propensity for belief in gods combine. In its earliest incantation leaders adopted or invented religions which then gave them greater validity and power.
Leadership has evolved into the state. That alone does not make the establishment of the system, aeons old perhaps, the most productive means for humanity to structure society into the future. No more than murdering a neighbouring tribe, raping young women in the woods, sacrificing babies to a god, abusing prisoners, being whipped-up into violent action by a cunning orator and so on. These are just things a human animal may have a propensity towards.
It is natural for leaders to want more power and absolute power. It is not natural for people to want leaders with absolute power (though it can appear so if they are seeking advantage themselves from or within that establishment).
I do not see our modern society as having progressively become more atheistic. I see that science has progressively dismissed mumbo-jumbo religions and so in turn the state itself, which first just took its mandate from the religions of Gods, has diverted religious belief from being a belief in Gods over to the idea of the state as being real instead. We still live in an age of religious indoctrination: now one of belief in the state as an entity which warrants man's unquestioning capitulation to its real necessity and its supreme power.
Man is infinity adaptable. If we were born into the world of being jellyfish we would adapt to that the same as we adapt to being born a king or a slave. Born into a world of states we accept the paradigm as being normality.
One must separate the issues. It is no good thinking: 'we must have a state, regardless of its legitimacy, because a state is essential'. That is cognitive dissidence. Try a thinking exercise for imagining that there is, already, a known answer for every need of human society without needing a state, (or at least restrain from being overwhelmed by the converse belief when it rises). Would you still demand the necessity of a state then? A 'state' without it having assumed the authority to make people do what it decrees is not a state. So a state must have the ability to use force. If it has the authority to use force it must do so even without voluntary agreement. Would a state be legitimate if there was no need for it?
Therefore the issue is not is a question of: is 'the state' legitimate, because clearly it is not. Its imagined legitimacy comes instead from asking the question: is the state essential despite its illegitimacy.
The act of freedom happens in the mind: we can never be free whilst our minds are enslaved.
The only thing one can rely upon in a human society is that generally people will act first in their own self-interest. It may be likely that a majority will act reasonably most of the time but it is improbable that that alone would be sufficient to allow an ordered society to function. I do not see where my proposals rely on anything more than just a realistic level of reasonable action - that we are not all thieving psychopathic rapists, just a few are.
I do think most people are generally reasonable and most people realise that their self-interest is best served by their being reasonable and not by acting in a manner harmful to others. But clearly this propensity for fairness and reasonableness is not going to be a sufficient mechanism alone for an ordered safe prosperous society to function.
It certainly is not realistic that some imagined telepathic hocus-pocus could do this job of ordering society because, as far as we know, such a thing does not exist.
A woodland does not need a central planning committee to order it to be sustainable, for the good of the life that thrives in it. But it does need central control if it is being grown as an ornamental park though that would be a very superficial means of determining the wood's surface appearance. If the woodland management stops it quickly reverts to being a natural environment which is more efficient and robust that the man-made model. We need to stop the action of government impinging on human society and allow society to develop the natural systems in place of the false actions of the state. Human society may change its appearance a little but it would be more robust as a result.
People and human society manage to do all sorts of things without the fundamental involvement of government to manage the various processes. A good example is the production and distribution of food. Where the state is involved mostly the result is a deterioration of efficiency - farm subsidies for example. More efficient is allowing pure market forces to find the most profitable means to fulfil the market's demand. Where government did take complete control in the USSR the result was inefficiency, lack of choice, starvation and shortages.
Indeed most of human activity is, thankfully, greatly free from over interference of the state and works just fine. The more government meddles the more distorted the systems become. All we need are market forces responding to the market meeting needs and self-interests.
I like the thinking that everything mankind does is actually part of a 'natural' process. If that is building nuclear power stations or genetically engineering a new species based on the original human it can all be understood to be the activity and development of a natural creature - much like termites building a mound or chimpanzees murdering the young of mating and resource competitors.
The evolution of leadership in human society is part of a natural ordering that has evolved just the same. That would make a seed change towards a society that did not require an authoritarian state using force to implement its mandate part of a natural process too. It would not be artificial, how could it be imposed outside of just being a next step in the development of human society I am not sure (short of extraterrestrials brainwashing humanity as an anthropological experiment perhaps but even that would be 'natural' within a galaxy wide ecosystem).
I am not suggesting that a human society ordered by a plethora of spontaneously formed, needs-based, non-hierarchical, self-organised, systems developing in response to demand would be without imperfections. I am suggesting that it would respond to such imperfections rapidly and effectively. The responses that fail to provide the most efficient solutions would be less likely to be as widely adopted as those found to be efficient and successful.
A reasonable quick outline of this science can be found at Wikipedia:
My proposal is not to do with expecting that a self-organising society will return humanity to some pre-technological style of existence. That humans are natural creatures living in a natural world does not mean they would not continue to cause market forces that utilise the best of advancing methods. The analogy with a self-organising ecosystem is intended to only be analytical in that a modern human Societal ecosystem, (whilst still a complexed counterbalanced series of relationships, with causes and effects), can nevertheless include whatsoever advanced solutions service and goods providers find market forces indicate as most advantageous for their commercial success.
Far from government providing a 'firewall' between the weak and the exploitive and to muster initiative at times of duress, the state is the most exploitive mechanism kept at the behest of an elite oligarchy to funnel tax and power to their interest and the state is the predominant cause of violent death by way of war and holocaust.
The Establishment Plagued with Sociopaths, Psychopaths and Useful Idiots
DEMOCIDE: MURDER BY GOVERNMENT
Democide: The murder of any person or people by a government, including genocide, politicide, and mass murder.
A clear mind can not condone this corrupt system.