The title of this post is self-explanatory.
For a while now I’ve had a growing suspicion about something, a developing thought that I couldn’t quite articulate until I read Gyn/Ecology where Daly elaborated on the bones of it:
Nothing men can do, build or create can ever beat the miracles and marvels you find in nature. This concept is so very obvious once you come across it. But a lot of effort goes into convincing people that man-made “miracles” are better, more exciting, more marvellous than they actually are.
The truth: they’re crap. And more to the point, they’re dead.
Disneyland is a pet hate of mine. It is peddled as being a world of magic, when in fact it’s a pile of rusting tin. It is an imagination killer, as any child who is not afraid of disappointing the adults who bought the tickets will tell you. A classic case of the Emperor’s New Clothes.
I have had the fortune of visiting and living in some of the most beautiful cities in the world. While I could appreciate their beauty when I compared them to other cities , there was always a nagging sensation in the back of my mind of is this all? Beautiful cities do nothing to dissipate existential loneliness, and more often than not they increase it.
When I say they’re dead, I mean that much is made of the beautiful architecture but when you look closely enough you find it’s mouldy, or rotting, or tumbledown, which does hold a certain intrinsic aesthetic beauty, But it simply cannot be compared to your average forest, which is filled with daily miracles and marvels.
Cities tend to smell: of drains or pollution, or stagnant river water. Whereas forests smell of pine or flowers or fresh air, that rarest of commodities. Forests are exciting, full of surprises. If you’re lucky you’ll chance upon a sight you’ve never seen before, a flower or a nesting bird, or much more, depending on how long you stay and in which part of the world you live. Cities are boringly predictable by comparison; they are exactly as they’re described in the guide books.
This is not a matter of taste. I don’t believe there are city people and country people. I believe we are taught from a very early age that there is “something” in man-made architecture that will reveal a key to the soul. But it doesn’t, or not as well as we are taught it should, and we become confused. The closest humans can get to re-creating the beauty they see in the natural world is certain types of art, but even art doesn’t pretend to beat nature; it knows it can only copy.
Nature is devalued, just like women. How far would men’s power go if they didn’t have nature or women to exploit? Not far at all, I suspect.
I’ll always laugh at the anti-climax of the robot invented by the Japanese last year. I’m sure I wasn’t the only person to be underwhelmed. I wasn’t the only person to secretly think “C3PO from Star Wars was much better ” while simultaneously forgetting that C3PO was in actual fact a living man in a body suit. However hard they try they just cannot imitate life.
But that didn’t stop them from trying even harder by announcing they’d created a “female robot“. Oh how I laughed at seeing the same robot with a long-haired wig on top of its head and painted red lips. I shit you not. A trans robot.
And a bad case of womb-envy if ever I saw one.
Yesterday I watched a programme showing one natural miracle after another. The Invisible Camoflaging Octopus took my breath away. Who needs CG when you have a miracle right there in the sea.
Then I went for a drive and saw a tree-full of plum blossoms: another casual miracle just standing there on the side of the road.
We’ve been duped.