First, there was unorganized barbarism for the species, down to the individual, very-personal level. It was very hands-on. It was very messy. There was a lot of complaining about the workaday dry-cleaning bill for the yak furs, and some wisecracks from the laundry about the stains on the goatskin leisure suits as well.
Then, in a burst of ingenuity usually reserved for the plunder of goods and riches from others, humanity figured out a way to step back a bit from the mess of mayhem-making, if not the abyss of going with our worser instincts: We watched volcanoes fling great chunks of rock onto hapless hunter-gatherers in our midst, and, inspirationally thunderstruck, we immediately started building catapults, trebuchets, and other means of decimating people at a distance, such as telemarketing calls.
Slings and arrows of outrageous fortune had nothing on the march of human cunning. Before long, we were able to drop large portions of mountainous regions upon distant enemies and hostile foreigners, not to mention the people right under the cave window who were completely clueless as to how to work the howling alarm systems on their Flintstonemobiles at half-past two-stones-and-a-clam-shell in the morning.
With time and patience -- and enduring incredibly harrowing episodes of trial and error -- human shrewdness slowly honed itself into the production of better and finer constructs, sharper spearheads, and more inventively lethal machines of death. Everything was tried, from razor-tipped arrows for crossbows, to boiling tar pots hoisted high overhead, and even pink-codpiece-clad Mary Kay cosmetics salespeople bearing early atomizers.
Today, of course, we have modern atomizers, such as H-bombs, which can atomize almost anything into a finely sorted set of sordid, blood-soaked, subatomic particles. We live in the comfort of the progress wrought by our intellect, our curiosity, and our unyielding drive to hammer the living bejesus out of people and places not sitting quite right with us at the moment.