My brain can usually only make place for one annoyance at a time.
But this is not an annoyance. It’s that rare thing – a thought.
People like David Attenborough (and I love him to bits) would have us believe that as a species we dragged ourselves to the top of the evolutionary ladder through spit, tears and a good attitude. Lent a bit of an advantage by an upright stance, group dynamics and an opposable thumb.
With due respect I disagree.
Except the thumb bit – thumbs up (couldn’t resist).
Do you know what drives our species. Aside from the slow but steady grinding force of DNA mutation and survival of the fittest?
The seven deadly sins.
Today they’re more of a guideline due to the fact that most civilised nations nations have stopped stoning people or burning them.
Yes, Iran I’m looking at you – stop being so coy. And Syria – stop hiding behind that ophthalmologist – I see you, din;t need glasses.
But those seven ‘don’t do’ (otherwise someone will start throwing lightening) are what drove human development.
Let’s have a look at them.
Let me explain my reasoning.
Step by step. Sin by sin.
I leg humpingly believe that this is what allowed us to progress. The moment Ugg looked at Goongers mate and said ‘want’ that was the human race started really running for the bear skin duvet. The latest science shows that we fucked the Neanderthals out of existence. I would not be surprised if scientist examining a Woolly Mammoth carcass from the steppes of Russia found human DNA. We’ll fuck anything. Pornhub says so.
Please don’t go to Pornhub and search ‘Woolly Mammoth’. I haven’t, but I am 100% convinced that there will be entries.
Ok – now that you’re back (proving my point) and have used the eye bleach let’s move on to Gluttony.
Yum. Who doesn’t like to eat? People in life rafts eat each other. People eat spiders – which I think is fantastic – the more the better. Eat House Centipedes next and then move on to the slugs and moths.
Here’s the thing. Have you seen a Dodo lately No?
Reason: We fucking ate them all.
The human race is full of greedy fucks. Why? Because we are omnivores. We are not specialised – if it walks, crawls, slithers or bounces we’ll eat it. It gives us a competitive edge.
‘Please sir – may I have some more?’ Don’t pay attention to that little shit. We are all a Darwinian examples of how greed will pop us up the ladder to evolutionary success.
Greed is good. It makes us tick as a species. It provides us with hope and the ability to strive for a better tomorrow. Without greed we would never have left the primordial swamp.
This sin is not difficult to put into an evolutionary perspective. The reason is that if you fall prey to the other six ‘sins’ you will almost automatically fall prey to sloth. Once you have finished with greed and lust and gluttony you’re going to want a lie down. And more of the former. And do you know what? The only way to enjoy sloth is once you have eliminated all the threats you have to face. The aforementioned Ugg is not going to snooze unless he’s eaten the Cave Bears which might have interrupted his afternoon lie down.
Sloth is not a sin. It’s a reward for clawing your way to the top of the evolutionary climbing apparatus. You wake up refreshed, have a piss in the glowing sunlight of a rising dawn and then prepare to kill something. It is essential.
If people didn’t get hideously pissed off we would not have crawled out of the mud. If things with scales and jaws like industrial machines were trying to eat me I’d also get slightly vexed. In fact I might even become peeved. My thoughts would be along the lines of ‘wait you fuckers, I’m coming back with a huge stick.’
Wrath is fantastic – maintaining a level of ‘pissed off’ is great – it makes us better, faster thinking and more vicious than every other species on the planet. God help the aliens who come to harvest us for food when they do arrive. They’re going to be kebabs.
Why bother if you are going to be driving a beat up 70’s era family hauler when your neighbour is getting up in the morning and hitting the streets in a Rolls Royce?
If envy didn’t make your heart beat a little faster then you would continue to be that little fish that bigger fish view as a dinner option. But you’re not. You covet that Roller, you envy your neighbour sleeping with his wife and her plastic surgery enhanced tits.
Ugg (he’s back) envied the fur on that Cave Bear that allowed it to sleep so comfortably when the glaciers were bearing down. So what did he do?
Firstly he killed and ate the Cave Bear. secondly he invented fire. The bedrock of human development and evolution. Without envy we’re pond scum.
Should you be proud of yourself? Hell yes!
You’re here. Alive and still your lifetime keeps on ticking somewhat ominously towards a final rest.
Be fucking proud of yourself. Look at the humble tadpole. It goes through living hell to become a frog. Everything above and below the waterline wants it for a snack. You don’t have to put up with that. Be proud you can grab the nearest hard object and beat the snot out of almost anything on the planet.
Stand tall and embrace the fact although you walk through the valley of death you are the meanest Motherfucker in that valley.
Without pride we are tadpoles.
Taking this all into account it’s no wonder that giraffes, as majestic as they are or lemurs who do have very clever hands are not in control of the world.
We’re nasty and vicious. That’s what makes the world go round. Not butterflies and Unicorn poop – rock hard viciousness. And we will not stop until the last blade of grass is gone. Because we’re hardwired for it.
Happy – well whatever.
That said – I’m not that cynical. That was just the result of a thought. And it was meant to make you think. How many of those sins are you guilty of? Can you forgive yourself? My answer is yes. Do not live with the burden of the mind. It is fruitless. Tomorrow is another country – explore it.
Be with those you love, and cherish the fact that you deeply flawed. We all are. But in this season we can make an effort to at least try better. Please. I have reserved my seat in one of the circles. It might actually be a bit of a timeshare deal. There are many circles that I would fir into. Almost like the part of the sky in the jigsaw puzzle.
But you have to try and avoid those sins. Try as hard as you can.
May goodness and mercy follow you all. May your God smile down and recognize you for what you are, a unique and precious being.
May those who love you see through the paper thin exterior and into your heart – and may that that heart be filled with love. For others – and for yourself.
You are part of a great web of humanity. Just being here today is a miracle. It may be tough, but as the greatest Gonzo journalist of all time said:
“Pray to God, but row away from the rocks.”
It’s up to you to police your own conscience. Be true to it.