A man walks up to a street corner and sees a large monkey sat on top of a packing crate with an arrow pointing toward the ground, and large print along it when read upside down stating “THIS WAY UP”. The monkey is rather concentratedly examining its hand, picking away at something, though its facial expression gives nothing away. Confidently the man strides up to the large monkey, who up until this moment has been quite unaware of the approaching man. All of a sudden the monkey stops what it’s doing and slightly taken aback as if ready to make an escape, it sits transfixed wary of the man’s next move. The man stops and says “Hi” waving his hand at the same time. The large monkey doesn’t move. Then the man begins to speak again…
“How am I doing today?” the man asks the monkey.
The monkey looks quizzically at the man, looks behind its shoulder as if checking out its escape route and flicks back to meet the man’s questioning, but friendly gaze.
There is a long pause as the monkey seemingly assesses the situation, its breathing a little rapid, its eyes wide and alert. Then, tentatively the big ape inches forward slightly.
“Have you looked in the mirror lately?” the monkey asks the man.
The man now looks at the monkey with a similar quizzical expression, looks behind his shoulder as if to see if anyone else might be listening in, then turns back to face the dark haired creature.
“Well yes, this morning actually” the man frowns, confused by the monkey’s obviously rhetorical response.
“Who did you see in the reflection?” the monkey continues…
Scratching his head for a moment the man answers, “Myself of course!”
“Then what are you asking me for?!” the monkey exclaims, and returns to study its hand once again.
*The Moral of the story is: if you wish to understand the nature of your being and of your own beliefs, DON’T ASK A MONKEY!
** This little piece of satire is in response to a rather defunct debate I was having with another blogger some weeks ago regarding the study of apes in order to understand traits in human behaviour, which to me is a ludicrous notion. Not because I am uneducated in such methods of scientific investigation, but because as an intelligent human being who believes in common sense and people taking responsibility for their thoughts and their actions, a champion of the subjective reality of everybody and every monkey’s life, then such a notion, to me at least seems ridiculous. It’s faddist, non-sensical, scientific codswallop, and belongs in the realm of the Victorians and their penchant for blowing smoke up a person’s behind with a set of bellows in order to stop them from drowning.
If you wish to learn about ape behaviour, then by all means study apes. However, if you wish to understand your own human condition, then for godsake stop with the deflection, and deferring of responsibility and take a good hard look at yourself. We each are a perfect mobile example of human nature at full-bore. Everything you could ever want to know about your own nature is right behind your nose, attached to it and up it, not in front of it, so to speak. No longer do we need to look outside of ourselves for the answers that we have complete access to, and always have had, incidentally. Science has a lot of catching up to do, and there simply is not enough time to wait for it to do so if you want to live a fulfilling and meaningful life. So let us stop kidding ourselves and take responsibility for who we are and who we want to be. Love your inner monkey, give it peanuts and you never know, it may well surprise you. You may well discover that you know more than you have been giving yourself credit for all these years. No one knows you better than you, not even a monkey with a lab-coat and a degree in Nuciferaeolgy!
And a Riz au lait to you all!