The Ape Man Chronicles Part 1: Unveiling the Heart of Darkness
A long time ago, Apeman was happy to swing in the trees with Apelady, eat bananas, and have a rompus time all ‘round til the end of his days. Then, something changed -- he got tired of swinging and wanted more! His creative appetite was no longer met by his ape man life. So he migrated off the trees and started building cave dwellings and homes for his ape family.
He began to craft tools and implements for hunting, while the ape ladies gathered together and did ape-lady things. Soon they had fires for cooking, rudimentary clothing, painting, crafting and group activities, and the ape peoples' lives were happy and bountiful. For the most part.
But Apeman still was not satisfied -- he wanted more...
He learned to farm and grow crops, and soon civilizations of cultured ape people were popping up everywhere. Every step the ape man made further away from the life of the trees, he missed them even more. And yet his thirst for more pleasure, satisfaction and power drove him to create and innovate relentlessly.
The Evolution of Apeman and the Heart of Darkness
By now, Apeman and his vast web of tribes and enemies were so far removed from their roots, you could hardly recognize them (save for their occasional barbaric rituals and traditions). The ape man had evolved into the modern human species called Homo Sapiens, and with so much bounty he was multiplying like rabbits.
Over thousands of years the modern civilized human continued to thrive and flourish, creating ever more sophisticated modalities of civilization, education, and political systems of governance. The ingenuity of the modern human was so great that it could not be contained. Restless and hungry, he continued his quest for more pleasure and power. Uncontent with what he already had, he spread out to conquer what he perceived as the last uncivilized tribes of the earth, and steal their bounty -- the unevolved ape men who were still in the dark.
He believed the last of the ape men were uncivilized, and inhuman -- they must be granted the gifts of modern civilization. After all, was it not his moral imperative to destroy the last vestiges of that which was uncouth and unclean?
But the very heart of darkness he sought to destroy through his conquests could never be eliminated, for it lie inside him. It was his own unquenchable thirst for his deepest ape man roots -- the heart of who he truly was.
The Wisdom of the Earth Keepers
As Apeman evolved to Homo Sapiens, he split into many different tribes and civilizations. Those who set out to wander in search of a better life and landed at the further ends of the earth evolved in their own way -- their mission was different.
Though they had many of the same aspirations, they had a different role in the larger scheme of things -- they were destined to stay closer to their roots, and serve as the earth keepers and ancient wisdom holders. Their role was to keep the growth of civilization -- centered on the cities, agricultural industries and growing nation states -- in balance.
The earth keeper humans remained closer to their roots and worshipped the very life they led. They honored all the elements of existence, and learned to value the wisdom and self-mastery of uniting their lives with the essence of all that is; this desire for uniting with the source of existence was the greatest of all thirsts to quench.
This was the great wisdom of the earth keepers -- the quest of their wise men -- and it shaped the lives of all their people.
But the modern civilized ape human was not content to let them be -- blinded by his civilized mind and a heart of unquenchable fire, he could not rest until he had conquered all but the last few hidden earth people.
The Turning Point and the Apeman's Dilemma
As time went by and the last of the earth people were conquered to his satisfaction, the man turned his thoughts back to what he had created -- a civilization so vast it threatened to collapse upon itself and destroy the very earth on which he thrived. What had he created? What mattered now? What had he gotten himself into, and what was the point of it all..?
He began to realize the errors of his ways, but would it be possible to turn back now...?
He dreamed of a simpler life -- a life swinging among the trees -- but by then, his life had become far too complicated. He had loans and debts -- children to put through school, and TV shows he had to finish watching (what would happen to the characters he lived vicariously through...?). It was the Apeman's great dilemma.
So he stayed in his modern human life, striving to reach his goals, and letting his dreams fester until they began to slowly eat away his brain and make him crazy. He stuffed them deep down as far as they could go, and continued attempting to find joy through indulging his fancies, intellect and desires...
'I can be an ape man in the city!' he thought... so he fancied himself a modern apeman -- ate steak and lobster, drank fine wines, looked after his loved ones, played with his friends in the park and went to the gym or yoga a few times a week...
Deep in his heart, the man knew there was something missing, and yet he couldn’t put his finger on it. So he strived in all his work to be the best he could. He went out hunting for cavewomen, and drinking with his buddies. And still he was not satisfied.
And here we come to the true crux of the matter: Deep in his heart Apeman will never be satisfied until he re-unites with the inner truth of who he is and discovers the only fountain which can satisfy his deep and endless thirst...
Can 10,000 years of “civilization” be undone from Apeman's genes? Or, is the ape man at heart doomed to swing restlessly between his neanderthal roots, his thirst for something greater, and his post-modern technology driven reality?
Or could there be another way -- a third way -- a way out of the ape man's dilemma...?
Stay tuned for the next installment...
The Apeman Chronicles Part 2:
Preview: Yes, my friends, deep down inside we are all ape people. But as we enter into maturity of the internet age -- is the ever increasing rate of technology-driven evolution too fast for us to keep up? Will we evolve into a new species of Homo Sapiens -- part animal, part human, part machine -- or maybe just a leaner, smarter, more agile and sophisticated ape person at heart...?
I think I'm so educated and I'm so civilized 'cause I'm a strict vegetarian But with the over-population and inflation and starvation And the crazy politicians I dont feel safe in this world no more I dont want to die in a nuclear war I want to sail away to a distant shore and make like an ape man.
I'm an ape man, I'm an ape ape man...
~ Ray Davies, The Kinks
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Hanuman image via Neem Karoli Baba Taos Ashram