I have a quick question for you. How many times have you changed your mind today about something? Three times? Five? Twenty?
There’s nothing wrong with that. We change our minds all the time. Whether it’s what we feel like for dinner to what we’re going to do that weekend, we are constantly changing our minds. (Heck, my wife changes her mind close to twenty times a day just when it comes to footwear.)
Altering one’s beliefs or perceptions, though, is an entire different kettle of frogs. If one of us zombies honestly and truly believes something, it’s harder than a Conservative’s heart to make us see that a different way is even possible.
This could be why, when we drop our myopic lenses and bust through our tunnel vision and realize that something we didn’t originally believe is actually true, we have such a soul-searching moment where we question absolutely everything.
We all did this when we were kids, didn’t we? Back to that fateful time we learned there wasn’t really a Santa Claus (at least not the Coca Cola version of Jolly Saint Nick), we started questioning the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, all of them.
I had myself one of those moments a few days ago. For some strange reason, I picked up Andrew Marr’s book, A History of the World. I say strange because even though it’s a fascinating look at our history, it’s not exactly what one would call ‘light’ reading.
Anyway, I’m not too far into the tome when I come across a section about the town of Catalhoyuk. Situated on the plains of today’s Turkey, Catalhoyuk’s buildings were inhabited from a period of 9,500 to 7,700 years ago. Although I’ll leave you to ‘Google’ the rest of Catalhoyuk’s geography, there were two incredibly belief changing ideas this part of the book gave seed to in my mind.
One was that this town, which archaeologists believe grew close to 10,000 people, making it the largest settlement on Earth at the time, had no defense walls around the site. Now, my history isn’t all that great, but most of what I remember from high school or see on documentaries are wars, wars, human sacrifice, and more wars. Is it possible some way long ago ancestors of ours learned to live in love, peace, and harmony?
Because the next super cool fact about Catalhoyuk seems to point in that direction. In this town, there was NO ruling or religious class. All the homes were roughly the same size, they all held basically the same belongings (archaeologists have found paintings, pottery, and weavings) and they thrived and survived for nearly 1,400 years.
What the hell is going on here? Aren’t we told that socialism is basically a swear word? How can a bunch of Neanderthals (okay, okay, the Neanderthals were long gone before the Eden-like Catalhoyuk sprang to life, but you know what I mean) find the Nirvana that every single human should be searching for?
Is it possible that some of our ancestors learned to live peacefully before divided classes of people, warriors, and kings? Were our forefathers of thousands of years ago actually smarter and better than us?
I don’t know the answer to that, my dear zombie, but I do know this. The fact that Catalhoyuk even existed has altered my perception and has given me a little bit of hope, that maybe, just maybe, we’re not doomed as a species quite yet.
Humanity Man lives on this bizarre yet beautiful planet we call Earth. He likes peace, love, and the town of Catalhoyuk. He dislikes war, hate, and tunnel visioned Conservatives. Any comment, query, idea, etc. can be sent to him through this magazine.