At what point in time, as apex predators, did we become so soft?
Nowhere in the manual of human design does it call for us to morph into these stationary beings we’ve evolved into. Neither does it tell us to retire our innate attack characteristics. Whether we want to claim it or not, we reside at the top of the food chain for a reason.
I too somewhere along the way have become disengaged from my primal reasoning. After a weekend marathon session of watching Planet Earth II on Netflix I was reawakened to the idea of my own design.
The hunter-gatherer days have come and gone, and we now found ourselves in the days of benign detached consumption.
During the course of any typical Netflix binge, nature eventually calls and we pull ourselves out of bed from that hibernated state to replenish ourselves. On that particular day I was craving chicken. As the typical predator that I am, I walked downstairs and pulled some chicken breast from the icebox.
But then it hit me! I suddenly was met a stark realization. For thousands of years prior to my time, in order to consume any animal product, you had to be fully invest yourself into the pursuit. In order for me to enjoy my protein rich meal, I would have needed o take a life. I would have had to seek out whatever particular animal that was available at the time and resort to aggressive instinct.
Forget about the long arduous process that we all would have had to endure and the details that surround the experience, let’s fast forward through the millennia to say the early 1900’s. If chicken was on the menu for dinner you would have had to go out to the chicken coop and select a chicken. You then would have to either snap the birds neck with your bare hands, or put the animal out of its misery with the slice of its neck. YOu would have then had to pluck off all of its feathers, drain the blood, and begin the dismembering process.
My stomach starts to churn even at the thought of having to kill an animal, let alone deal with the blood and guts involved in cleaning process prior to cooking and eating. My apologies if you are reading this during your lunch break, but that cold-cut filled sandwich
biting into right now didn’t always appear so perfectly sterile.
Every day, like most of my generation, we wipe our hands clean from partaking in the mechanical stunning and slaughter. Our culinary experience is a three step process of grocery store, fridge, and frying pan. This deluded approach to food make some us think we are far more humane than we actually are.
The once mandatory right of passage of hunting and killing seems to have been placed on indefinite hiatus in exchanged for a detached, easier and softer way of life. I contemplate on whether this evolutionary shift has had more negative effect to our personalities and drive in life than we might be aware of.
Has my sheltered upbringing stifled some of the potentially beneficial rewards that are attributed to predators? Have these often hard-wired traits started to fall from our psyches? Do these now forgotten skills serve us more than simply filing our bellies? Has this made us a more passiveness generation who is now afraid to go for the kill in other respects of their lives, like approaching potential suitors in partnership and maybe even economic upward mobility?
Could you kill that chicken?
I for one would probably just settle for a salad.