Chapter 5: Man
The fifth concept is Mars, whose color is red. He is Man. Many civilized people see men do evil in civilization. They might think that these evils are part of Man and that Man is evil inside. They fail to see that these evils are caused by civilization. They do not understand Man at all. One of the evils that they see is war.
Mars is not always a war God. Man is often peaceful. There are some hunter-gatherer societies that have no war. Wars happen in most societies, but they become more common when Man leaves Nature. Civilized men fight over unnatural things, like politics, power, property and money. Hunter-gatherers dont have these things, which become more common the more civilized a society becomes.
Some thinkers, such as Carl Sagan, blame primitive parts of the brain for warfare. He often talks about civilized wars and assumes that they are caused by primitive instincts which civilized progress could control someday. He sees instincts such as aggression or territoriality or the ability to follow leaders as part of war. Maybe these instincts do exist as part of Man, but Man has many other instincts. An instinct is not made of just one instinct. Instincts are combinations of feelings. Mans overall instincts might actually be very peaceful. These feelings can go wrong when things are unnatural. They work fine in Mans natural environment. Many men fail to realize the difference between civilized war and primitive war. Civilization will kill more people in more inhuman ways than primitive war ever would. Progressives who think they can stop war with progress might be very mistaken. They will just create an advanced world where people kill with more advanced methods. Civilization can take Mans instincts and pervert them into something more violent than nature could have ever produced.
Most civilized wars are started by someone who has something to gain, but does not actually fight. Civilization will manipulate people to accomplish civilized goals. The people who fight are going to gain nothing but suffering. At least an uncivilized warrior will do his own fighting for things that he wants to fight about. A civilized soldier might not want to fight, but he is disciplined to deny his feelings, so he can kill. The civilized army turns men into killing machines that nature never intended. Families might not want to send their children to war, but the system makes them. Civilized leaders might not want to have a war, but civilized politics makes them support the war. Civilized reasons for war do not come from the primitive brain. They come from the insanity of civilization.
Carl Sagan is typical of men who fear Mans nature and assume that Man is naturally evil. He also thinks that Man has a potential to be good, but he sees this potential happening as a result of technological progress. What he fails to realize is that the process that he uses to correct the evil is causing the evil. He is evil even though he tries to do good. He is full of utopian dreams; his fear and hatred drives him to all kinds of sick, insane, perverted ideas. Men like him could destroy the world. They think progress is order, and that order will bring peace. They fail to realize that Man has many peaceful instincts, which can bring about peace, that do not come from order. These instincts must come about naturally. Any forced discipline would pervert Mans instincts.
We should just leave Man to do as he wants. Small tribal wars may be a working part of life in some environments. What is important is that Man keeps the balance with Nature and is part of Natures balance. The sacred name of Man is YESUO, which is where the name, Jesus, comes from. "Y" is conception. "E" is birth. "S" is learning. "U" is maturity. "O" is old age. The name is the five stages of Life. Y is the head. E is the left arm. S is the left leg. V is the right Leg. O is the right hand. Man should be standing on Earth. Adam, the first man is Yama, the man you meet when you die, because he is you. While you are alive you are Tyr, the tree of life and the middle pillar at the center of the temple, balanced between everything.
Some Progressives might say that countries will one-day stop fighting as Man advances to become a global nation. This wont stop war. There is more than one kind of war. Advanced, civilized societies fight members of their own society to keep Man in control. Some people who are dependent on the civilized system, but cant fit into it, turn to breaking the rules of civilization. In order to control these people, civilization has police, who are soldiers, fighting against their own people. The city streets are a battle zone, worse than any tribal war. Civilization is a war of Man against himself.
Life could happen in many places in the universe. The Earth produced life almost as soon as it was formed. Intelligent life is perhaps rarer. The Earth existed for many billions of years before it produced intelligent life. This seems to indicate that intelligence does not easily occur. It is possible that most planets with life would not produce an intelligent form. The universe is very big, so even a rare thing like intelligence could happen many times. They could be very different from us. Some would never develop unnatural technology. Others may have progressed as we did, until they almost destroyed themselves. Perhaps a few who survived did so by remembering what they really are. They did not reject themselves. Instead, they accepted themselves. They found their Sacred Grove. Before man reaches this stage, there are many things about himself that he must rediscover.
Civilized man often thinks that primitive people never have any beautiful images in their stories. They assume that beautiful images are a sign of a civilized society expressing itself, and that beautiful ideas developed only after Man became civilized. Most of the scholars who say that primitive people have no beautiful images have probably never read primitive mythology. Culture is created by people, not progress. Often the information that civilized thinkers have when they compare primitive societies to their own comes from rumors and direct lies. These are often created by missionaries or businessmen who want to make the people they need to conquer look bad. Many extremely educated people believe these lies.
Many agricultural societies have stories about boys or girls being killed and planted. These stories are about the crops, and not actual people. An Englishman named Frazer interpreted these stories as evidence of human sacrifice. He thought primitive people believed that they could make the crops grow by killing people. When better qualified scholars examined some of these societies they found no evidence of actual human sacrifice. They found that the children are the loving care that a farmer gives to his field. This give-and-take relationship is the creative mother.
Frazers, The Golden Bough, is a very popular book on primitive belief. Unfortunately, it gives a very wrong image of primitive people. Frazer is typical of men who believe that old ignorance and superstition will be replaced by rational progress. Frazers book is very violent and bloody. Primitive man never did most of the things, which Frazer accuses, him. Civilized man is sick enough to think of these things. There is another common myth about a king who is replaced each year. Frazer automatically assumes that the new king killed and ate the old king. The idea of peaceful retirement never occurs to Frazer. He interprets every myth to be a human sacrifice.
Many cultures claim to be founded by someone who gave them their laws. They believe that following these laws makes them better than other people. All people have a similar belief, including Frazer. His law is progress. A common idea in the myths about law appearing in many cultures, is the elimination of human sacrifice. All people seem to dislike human sacrifice. They usually accuse other people of practicing human sacrifice, even if it is not true. It helps them to think that their ways are better than the ways of other people. The Jews consider themselves the Chosen People, married to God, and they believe that they must obey His laws, given to them by Moses. Their holy books are full of accusation against the Canaanites, who are accused, of burning children in sacrifice to Moloch. Canaanite records have been found which show the Canaanites to be normal every day, people. Perhaps they did not burn children to Moloch, and the Jews are probably not the Chosen People, either.
Many cultures believe that the Founder may one-day return. These Messiah ideas are common, especially with people who have been conquered and would like to return to the older ways. They may want a Moses who will lead them to Paradise. Only those who are faithful to the old laws will join the Messiah. Jews wait for the Messiah. Christians believe he came, founded his church, and sacrificed himself to save mankind. They think that God proved he loved us by giving us his only son, Jesus, who will one day return again. To be the Chosen you must sacrifice yourself to the Messiah. Some people actually kill themselves. This kind of human sacrifice does exist, especially in civilized societies who have insane religions, which wish to escape from the world, and have forgotten normal human behavior.
Many civilized religious men think that civilized religion is somehow better than primitive religions. They might call primitive religions "pre-logical." It is easy to think that the religion you were raised to understand is more logical than someone elses. Many Progressives think that they are going to create a more logical religion. I see no reason why religions cant be fun without being completely logical. Often, primitive religions do give a meaningful picture of reality. One man might see a great fire; another man might see wind, and both might be watching the same tree grow. Trying to make it logical is just another way Progressives want to sterilize their world.
Often, a primitive Shaman, like "Black Elk," who talks about a circle of people, will make more sense than civilized men such as Jesus Christ, Mohammed, or Shakyamuni, who talk about spiritual salvation as if they really knew.
Many civilized people think primitive people believe that magic can make rain happen. They dont realize that myths have more than one meaning. Perhaps the rain dances are celebrations. Very few people think they can actually make rain. It is civilized man who has left nature and ignores the rain and forgets to celebrate it. Perhaps the rain is social bonding that the tribe may experience during a ceremony. The rain priest brings rain. Dont make the mistake of interpreting the myth literally. Perhaps you would have to live in the culture to understand its myths. There are many, meaningful stories in primitive religion, and many kinds of ideas, because each society has many kinds of people. Frazer did not understand.
There are also Apollonians and Zeus-worshipers in primitive societies. You can find all kinds of men in any society. Perhaps mankind naturally produces different people who each contribute a different part to their societies. Civilization has made the mistake of letting the Apollonians and the Zeus-worshipers dominate. Everyone else is forced to conform to ways into which they were not made to fit, or else they are cast out as garbage. Black Elk was a Thunder Dreamer, who worshipped the Morning Star, a disciplined puritanical idealist, who easily fit in civilization when it conquered his people, but he still had a strong vision of Nature which no civilized men could have. Another Indian Shaman named Lame Deer was a much more "fun guy," who had trouble fitting civilization. I recommend Lame Deers book.
Many civilized people think all primitive people are superstitious and limited in point of view. They never stop to think that perhaps primitive culture is full of ideas that would compare, and even sometimes do better, than the greatest of civilized thinkers. All societies, primitive or civilized, have a few individuals who know a lot about religion. Our oldest books of philosophy, from India, Greece, and China, date from around 500 BC. All major doctrines and dogmas were well developed before these books were written. Man may have developed them long before 500 BC. These ideas did not develop as technology developed. An ancient philosophy book is just as good as any written today. There has been no progress in philosophy. All philosophers reinvent arguments, which have been said before, over and over again. The ancient Greek, Plato, is perhaps the best, because he gives detailed descriptions of many philosophical arguments.
The arguments over religion that occur in college religion courses today also happened back in ancient Greece and in the jungles of the Amazon before Columbus. Archeologists have found religious symbols from men who lived during the last Ice Age. Perhaps a religious expert from 30,000 BC would know just as much as the greatest religious scholar today. Also, a religious fanatic from 30,000 BC would have just as many profound beliefs as a religious fanatic would today. An atheist from 30,000 BC would have just as many doubts as an atheist today.
Sometimes a civilized man will point out something like a primitive belief in magic, and assume that the belief is not part of his own culture. If you show him the same belief in his culture, he will often say, "Thats just a leftover outdated idea that will probably vanish some day." I dont think it will. There are many things people do because they want to. A belief in magic will exist in all cultures. This particular civilized man perhaps did not believe in magic and assumed that progress will eliminate the belief. He may assume that his skepticism is the product of a more advanced form of thinking that only civilized progress could develop. What he fails to see is that all societies, even primitive ones, have skeptics like him. Skepticism is not a new development. There is probably the same average number of skeptics in your society as there is in any society, primitive or civilized. There are progressive people who believe in magic and assume that civilization is actually advancing magic. They might even accuse primitive people of not being magical enough.
Civilized people often think that civilized people are smarter. Often, Progressives think that progress is a continuation of evolution that makes life smarter. What they fail to see is that evolution has no aim. We dont know what will evolve as the Earths Gaya shifts about. Evolution does not necessarily make animals smarter. The mind is just another organ. In evolution, organs in a genetic line might change from time to time, but this change depends on what the environment lets happen. Sometimes a big brain fits, sometimes it doesnt. We just happen to be a thinking animal.
Civilization does not make a smarter mind necessary. The human mind developed as a hunter-gatherer. The hunter-gatherers life style requires much more use of the mind than a civilized lifestyle. As part of Nature, you have to use your brain the way you are biologically made to use it. Often primitive people develop a complex knowledge of their land and lifestyle. They also develop a sharp understanding of what it all means. They live as natural people and understand as natural people. Civilized people, who do not understand, cannot see the primitive wisdom, and call primitive men ignorant and superstitious, when actually it is the civilized man who is ignorant. You dont need much brains to survive in civilization. In a civilized society, our brain can become permanently damaged, and yet technology could keep you alive, and even allow you to reproduce.
Some civilized Progressives say that the brain got bigger and then invented civilization. This cant be true, because the brain has been the same size for sometime long before civilization. Man evolved to his present form thousands of years ago, before progress. We are still genetically the same as we were, and we still have the same mental abilities as our ancestors did. This does not mean that we will always be this way. Progress might change us like it changed those little nervous dogs that shake all the time. Domestication might one day eliminate Mans ability to think, but it is not making anyone smarter.
Even if Progressives know that primitive man has the same abilities, they think a civilized education system makes them use more of their mind. A civilized scholar might consider himself brilliant because he can understand more about one subject than most people. All he has really done is addicted himself to one subject. This does not take much brains; any idiot can use civilized educational methods and become addicted to one or more kinds of knowledge. This addiction to certain kinds of knowledge does not allow the whole mind to be used. It is an unnatural distortion of the minds abilities.
Many things in a civilized culture may have been adapted from more primitive cultures. Western culture has adapted many stories from the ancient Greeks, who are often said to have had beautiful stories. The ancient Greeks were not that technologically advanced. If their culture was still here today, they would probably be considered primitive by most scholars. The ancient Greeks adopted many of their ideas from other cultures, some of which were very primitive. They also had many ideas from their own more primitive past. I dont think civilization invented any beautiful images, but civilization did teach mankind new forms of ugliness.
Practices that the American Indians are said to practice such as scalp collecting were introduced to them by civilized men, who paid money for scalps. Actually it was civilized men who did most of the scalping, for money. The governments wanted Indian land so they paid for Indian scalp. Many Indians were repulsed by scalp collecting. Progress can corrupt a culture and make it evil, such as the civilized need for more land, which guided the government to collect scalps. Primitive people dont have that kind of civilized need unless a civilization has gotten hold of them and corrupted them. In most first contacts between primitive and civilized men the primitive men are very peaceful. Usually, civilization starts teaching them new forms of violence the minute they meet them. Most primitive people think civilized people are crazy. Theyre right. Many of them have visited civilization. Many people have left civilization and turned back to a primitive life, but few primitive people have ever accepted civilization by their own free will. Civilization is forced on people.
Perhaps most of the cases of actual human sacrifices are being committed by insane people who have already been affected by civilization. The Englishman, Captain Cook, tells a famous story about human sacrifice. The Tahitian king ordered a human sacrifice before a war. Cook noted that many Tahitian people did not like the sacrifice. The King wanted the sacrifice for political reasons. Their culture was ordered in a way that the ritual helped to reinforce the Kings power over his subjects. Many scholars consider the society in Cooks story typical of uncivilized people. I think the Tahitians did not have as much technology as the English did, but their culture was just as civilized.
Civilized man will blame primitive people for something civilization did. Many people think that the Indians killed off the buffaloes. In fact, it was civilized man who converted the buffaloes land to farmland and so caused them to die off. The Indians had hunted the buffalo for thousands of years before civilized man came along. The Plains Indians had a very special relationship with the buffalo, which civilized man couldnt understand.
The lies are combined with other lies and become bigger lies. It is interesting to see how civilized thinkers explain why primitive cultures commit human sacrifices. They dont have any evidence but still they explain what they dont know. They say that primitive people are full of fear, which comes from ignorance, so they use magic to fight this fear and commit human sacrifices. Civilized man invented this lie because of his own fear and ignorance. A civilized man will go into the jungle and feel fear, but a primitive man who has lived all his life in the jungle will feel at home. The Natural Man understands Nature and does not fear it. Civilized man has invented a very cruel image of Nature. He thinks that primitive man is always struggling to survive. These civilized men fail to realize that the lifestyle of a hunter-gatherer is usually a lot more relaxed than that of civilized people. They have no need to fight Nature.
Fear has a way causing people to invent stories that support the fear. Such stories are often so ridiculous that anyone who does not have the fear can see through them. Fear and ignorance is what keeps civilization together. Fear of man and ignorance of where man belongs. I tend to mistrust most reports of human sacrifice; often, the evidence is very questionable.
Anthropologists have a tendency to believe each other and seldom check their facts. Have you ever seen a shrunken head in a museum or textbook? The book might claim that the head was made by Jivaro Indians, who believe that they are keeping their enemys soul and power. They claim that the Jivaros have a secret method of shrinking heads. Usually they never check to see if these heads are real. Most of them are pigskin stretched across wooden molds. A real shrunken head would not even look like that. Actual shrunken sloth or monkey heads are very shriveled up. These heads were made by civilized men to sell to tourists. The story about souls was probably invented to increase sales. Anthropologists bought it. Perhaps the real Jivaros had nothing to do with this scam. If an anthropologist realizes that his head is a fake, he might still insist that, long ago, the Jivaros really made shrunken heads, because his books say they did.
Some anthropologists claim to make field studies. Most field studies are made by young grad students who will say anything to get a PHD. Anthropologists usually buy information from a culture with money, weapons, tobacco, and cocaine. People quickly learn to make a profit by giving the story the anthropologist expects to hear. If you have money and want to hear a story about human sacrifice, guess what happens.
Anthropology books are full of strange reports that make primitive people seem cruel. Many of these reports could be lies, but a few could be true. I question just how true. A writer may have given a sinister tone to something harmless. He might not mention how often people really practice these cruel practices, or how closely anyone follows the tradition. There, may be rebels who object to the tradition. There, may be reformers who do not practice the tradition. The whole tradition might be myth that the people invented to teach themselves not to do such acts. Perhaps primitive people were normal people just like anyone else.
Scholars from England are notorious for writing against primitive religion. Perhaps there is a reason. England exterminated thousands of cultures all over the world, all in the name of progress. The English caused overpopulation, poverty, and disease. The Nazis were never as insane as the English. At least the Nazis is were honest enough to admit their hatred. Those English scholars, who lived during the British Empires mightiest period, considered themselves special. This vision of self-specialness made them feel that they need to change many cultures. They never stopped to consider that the thoughts of other people might also have value. Those cultures are now dead. We can no longer study them to see what the truth might have been.
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