The Beautiful Animal

Ten thousand years ago, there were two species that thrived in vast and equal numbers across every continent (except Antarctica). Do you know which two species? I will tell you: Humans and lions.

Think about it. Two highly successful animals, one the predator, the other the prey. The lions were man’s teachers. Man learned vigilance, defense, group cooperation, courage and acceptance in the face of death. The lions learned too.

We were always meeting up since we hunted the same prey. Then, the lions turned their attention to the strange ones, the ones that wear an outer skin and carry spears. It was a relationship of mutual respect.

The lion is one of the most beautiful creatures on Earth. Matched to their environment in smooth, tawny colors, golden, jewel-like eyes, they present a picture of majesty and muscle. And, horizontally speaking, lions love to lie down a lot — licking their paws, enjoying the afternoon breeze. What about the humans?

Sometimes we may think of man in the wild as a depraved thing, lacking grace and beauty in the absence of civilization. Did we not wash ten thousand years ago? Groom? Keep our teeth free from rotting pieces of meat?

I will tell you what I think. The humans of ten thousand years ago, scattered across the globe lived various types of lives and developed according to their environment and social structure. Some bathed in water, some used various compounds of clay and plants to “be clean.” But, they were beautiful, Ladies and Gentlemen. They were bright-eyed sun-infused and learning and every day was a new day. They were the “old ones” that we hear about in legends, strong, brave, asking questions…so beautiful.

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