I took a walk through history the other day. Actually, it was just another hike. But aren’t all hikes through the wilderness a walk through history? This virgin desert hasn’t changed much from the way it was hundreds, or even thousands of years ago. It looks the same, smells the same, and even sounds the same, except for the occasional passing airplane.
It tastes the same, too, if you’re as brave as me, and willing to sample some of the herbivorous offerings growing underfoot. It’s never killed me to do this, which is a little surprising.
The ancients who hiked these hills before me had the same kind of worries, too. After all, I take care to avoid stepping on serpents, just like they did. But one of these days a rattler’s gonna get me, I’m sure. I’ve come close a few times, but so far the vipers have kept their fangs to themselves.
I can’t say the same for the two-legged vipers I’ve encountered, in that place we call civilization. But even the ancients had to deal with scoundrels within and without their tribes.
I’d sure like to get to know these ancestors. But the closest I can come is to walk through the same wilds they walked, and stomp the same hills, and keep the same watchful eye for buzzworms.
I wonder what they considered their reason for living? I doubt it was to be my progenitors, though that would be flattering. I’ll bet they, like us, could not quite put their finger on it. Everyone probably had their own theory.
The purpose of life, according to my finger, is just to experience life itself. There’s no life in boredom, pain, or endless hard labor. That’s death, in my book. So I try to avoid those things. And when I do, what’s left is simply life itself, with its purpose automatically fulfilled.
I wonder just how old my theory is. How many ancients, who walked these hills, would have agreed with me?