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All People Matter

There Is No Such Thing As A Bridge To Nowhere

Remain in Light cover

This morning I was listening to the 1980 Talking Heads album Remain In Light. The last, and least interesting, song on the album is called The Overload. It’s a long slow song that most times I skip over.

Today though I heard the song and made new note of it’s first line. That line is —“A terrible signal, too deep to even recognize.” 

This lyric reminded me of a scene in the novel On The Beach. On The Beach, written in 1957 by Nevil Shute, is about the few remaining human survivors, living in Australia, after a nuclear war. They are waiting for the radiation to reach them.

At one point in the novel, a signal of some kind is received from an American military base on the Pacific coast. I think it was from Washington state. The folks in Australia are hopeful that someone has survived and that there could be hope. A submarine is sent to investigate. It’s found that a coke can or something like that has fallen on the signal button and that is why the transmission is being sent.

It’s a creepy scene. The Australians explore the base in radiation suits and find nobody alive. Just an automated repeating signal that means nothing.

I thought about how this obscure 28 year old year old song that, despite mostly skipping over it, I’ve heard many times, could provide a link in my mind to a book I read maybe five years ago.  It reminded me that all things are connected. There is no such thing as a “bridge to nowhere.” Everywhere leads somewhere else.

See how the little bridge below even appears to lead in two different directions. Keep learning and keep your mind active and open and you’ll see the world for all it is and can be.

December 12, 2008 Posted by | Books, Music | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Humans Not As Unique As They Figure

A recent article in New Scientist magazine says human beings are not as unique as they imagine.

Above is a photo of sheep living in Austria. Here is a story about the minds of sheep. 

The article says animals have newly discovered and surprising abilities in ways people once thought as specific to humans.

For example, killer whales have been found to have distinct ways of communicating and hunting depending on if they live in a stable pod or are more transient. This speaks to culture among non-human species.

Some chimps use tools. Many people have seen the pictures of chimps using sticks to fish termites out of the termite mound. This is an example of tool use by animals.

Elephants grieve for dead herd members. Many animals have been noted for apparently emotional reactions. Humans are not the only species that experience emotion. 

Beyond culture, tool use and emotion, some animals may possess distinctive personalities, morality, and the ability to understand the mind and intent of another.

Humans are clearly unique. 

We are just not as special as we figure.

Who is as special as they figure?

Here is a BBC article on the subject of the minds of animals.

Below are lyrics from the Talking Heads song Animals.

They say they don’t need money
They’re living on nuts and berries
They say animals don’t worry
You know animals are hairy?
They think they know what’s best
They’re making a fool of us
They ought to be more careful
They’re setting a bad example
They have untroubled lives
They think everything’s nice
They like to laugh at people
They’re setting a bad example

June 16, 2008 Posted by | Music, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment