Thursday, June 05, 2008
Survival. What a loaded word.
It comes from the latin supervivere, to live beyond. The load comes in when what one is living beyond is considered. It could be something as benign as an individual continuing to live beyond the passing of today or as ominous as life on earth being able to exist beyond planetary human parasites. Even something as positive as surviving ones own appreciation award party has the connotations of living through the dangers of celebratory excess. The point I am attempting to establish here is that survival always connotes the possibility of having died from whatever one has gone beyond. The only way humans could look at life on earth as a matter of survival is to think man is alien to this planet and must adapt its environment to his unique peculiarities for his rigid requirements to survive, much like our trying to colonize Mars.
Of course there is the myth that man is unique among life on earth because some convenient deity is said to have created it all for humans to do with as they please. A note from the big daddy of everything excuses us from any responsibility. Then the only things left for man to survive are civilizations’ perversions of the beneficence of nature’s bounty.
I get a sense from this word that, despite evolution being given lip service among the modern intelligencia, very few people really believe mankind evolved as a species on this planet as a result of the same process that brings out new models every nanosecond. The fact that we can reproduce and live off the land as naturally as any of the other myriad of living entities whose particular variety is perfectly suited to earth’s nature means that calling our continued existence “survival” can only be in a sense so benign as waking up tomorrow because our species’ first model “survived” the evolutionary process of throwing infinite variety up against the wall to see what sticks.
All stories of survival in the wilderness only describe the apathetic disconnect civilization has wreaked upon the progeny of ancestors who lived very well in symbiotic harmony with what modern man sees as a threat to civilized atrophy and good taste. I have a notion such survival stories have popularity because they harken back to a past more juicy, more romantically familiar on a genetic memory level. Plus, they contain information useful in rejoining such a state of nature as preferable to the culture in which the books are read.
The biggest threat to man’s survival is the myth by which civilizations practicing totalitarian agriculture are blindly guided. I’ve gotten about half way through reading Mystic Warriors of the Plains for some background to my appeal for a world wide Indigenous Allience as a voice of the overwhelming majority of humanity who consider themselves as Earthlings well before any national loyalty. The reason I mention this book is because its author, Thomas E. Mails, a Lutheran pastor and what I consider to be one of the better Christians, cannot help himself in describing the Great Spirit without throwing in God and Heaven. Each passage evokes a joy in the symbiotic life style with which this land’s first inhabitants followed the buffalo after reading between the lines of passages expressing Mails’ sense of grief over the godless, impending doom their fragile dependence must survive. It is like trying to find out what they were like before meeting white man, the horse and the gun. Did they always wear war paint, or was it inter-tribal practice begun in preparation for survival of the white man's myth?
I consider myself a partial survivor and still learning and healing sufferer of that brainwashing myth; an education and governance system designed to conquer nature on both sides of my skin.
Note to Ban Ki Moon: Increasing world food supply by 50% will increase the world population by 50% with 50% more people still starving!!!!! Maybe the Pope could help by distributing condoms and education instead of calling hunger and malnutrition unacceptable.