The sun rose in a place this morning that let its light make a wall in the living room appear as if it were from a magical cave. The angle was so precise and so shallow that all the texture of the wall came to life. Every little bump seemed to be part of some story. (That’s a different story, of course.) We stared at the glow and the shadows in awe. I wonder if tomorrow will be similar. Perhaps a few minutes sooner. It could be a warmer glow. Looking forward to it. Will it be a deep orange, perhaps?
When some humans were finally able to settle in constant shelters and also when they were able to pick the light coming into their homes in some way, the experience must have been quite fascinating sometimes. When did the hunters and gatherers turn to hoarders and record keepers? And how did the various kinds of people get along? I am probably not alone with the idea that humans living in caves were not actually incredibly primitive. Yes, they might have lacked the ability to operate a keyboard, and there might have been very limited ideas about certain things we now use to test even toddlers. But I think that if they possessed a similar thing in their skulls as we do today, some pretty incredible theories and ideas and fears must have taken shape in there. And the experiences that were possible in a world before the written language must have been pretty magical as well; dependent on the environment and the temperature and the overall context of things, of course. The ones who had the luxury to collect and record stories might have not been the ones who traveled for long distances? Or was there an interaction that was constant, or was there a mix? Spiritually there must have been some pretty advanced something. Ways of getting food must have been pretty fascinating. And the experience of togetherness must have been rather spectacular too, at times.
Not trying to think of early humanity as a fantastically romantic group of people. But I just do not think that there was randomness to their actions as some think. The intelligence must have been a beautiful something, and the language must have been interesting. And those rejected or most curious became the ones who left and kept moving? An environment that was plentiful and mild would probably allow people to be different than the desert or some other unpleasant place. It actually still is the case, perhaps. Oddly a lot of our thinking and logic now is governed by ideas that were developed by people who had to be very protective and very inventive to survive in very adverse conditions. A lot of the aggression we have towards others seems to be inherited from the thinking that we are living in tribes that are fighting for some very singular survival. That way of thinking applied to a world of plenty causes a variety of problems to many. And “problems” is what the angry little tribe seems to be looking for, to stick together tighter anyway. More aggression seems to be the result? Escalation is the result?
What will be admired when things eventually settle and someone will look back at our time, the time when over fifty percent of humanity chose to live in some caves poured of stone, and did whatever they could to get access to fossilized wood? Will they admire our ability to fight and severely injure others; will they be impressed by our obsession with being right? Or will they admire the ability to look at the world in a particular way? The worst possible outcome would probably be that our actions today could lock out future generations from understanding what we were in love with, if it will be incompatible with their thinking then. The best possible outcome perhaps could be a certain gentle connection; and maybe a certain understanding that we were not simple crazy, angry ones that were not able to think beyond what’s beneficial for our little tribe.
Maybe as long as there will be walls and as long as the sun will rise, someone somewhere will stop to admire the light for no apparent reason. It feels good to know that that might happen again and again. Just as good as it feels to know that for thousands of years there were moments in someone’s life when they were able to stop and look at something completely irrelevant to whatever they were doing, and just admire it with a certain deep awe. No other value attached to it. No offer. No additional benefit.
Those moments might be the most valuable for us as a species. But that’s a pretty daring idea, I think.