A sermon on vermin

MEDEA, lithograph by Alfons Mucha (1860–1939). At the feet of the sorceress are her children, whom she has murdered to spite her ex-lover Jason (he of the golden fleece!)
With a slap of your hand you kill the mosquito that alights on you for a quick meal. With a stomp of your foot you squash dead a cockroach too slow at scurrying away. With a deadly feather-duster or vacuum cleaner you destroy the spiders and their elegant webs painstakingly woven in the nooks and crannies of your home. For no good reason other than to test the speed of your reflexes, you grab and clutch to death a tiny, inoffensive midge flying through the air. With an ozone-friendly insecticide you murder dozens of ants clearing away the debris on your kitchen floor. Humming a merry tune, you place a deadly mousetrap in your pantry cupboard.

You think of yourself as a person with at least one foot on the path to enlightenment. You rationalise the killing as being acceptable considering the nature and insignificance of the victims.

Yet the cockroach is to you as you are to the sentient entity known as Everything, aka Reality. The ant knows you as well as you know Everything. The mouse in the mousetrap understands its agony as well as you understand the trials and tribulations that Reality inflicts upon you. Do you want Everything to treat you as you treat those you believe are “lower” forms of life?

Actually, the sentient entity known as Reality doesn’t always treat humans in ways that humans would describe as “gentle” or “loving” or “respectful”. Let’s not forget that every thing is as much a part of Everything as anything, which is why Everything treats every thing equally. The so-called “acts of Everything”, including droughts, hurricanes, tsunamis and earthquakes, continue to cause misery and death to humans, cockroaches, ants and mice indiscriminately.

What makes humans a “higher” form of life than, say, mice? It’s true that mice don’t build cathedrals as well as humans do. But humans don’t scurry or gnaw or reproduce as well as mice do. In what way is cathedral-building a worthier activity than gnawing, or reproducing for that matter?

In human terms building cathedrals is constructive, and gnawing is destructive. But in fact humans are much more skilled in destruction than mice are. The philosopher King in Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels describes humans as “...the most pernicious race of odious little vermin Nature ever suffered to crawl upon the face of the earth.”

The Earl of Gloucester in Shakespeare’s King Lear remarks that as “...flies to wanton boys, are we to the gods. They kill us for their sport”.

The sorceress Medea in the play by Euripides says that “whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad”. Medea kills her children to spite her ex-lover Jason, an act of madness that some would say implies the absence of free will. To this day many humans deny responsibility for their actions on the grounds of insanity or of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The destruction that humans inflict upon ourselves and others reflects a collective madness for which it’s tempting to blame the psychopathic Jehovah, who blithely describes himself as wrathful and jealous. After all, Jehovah gave us “…dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth” (Genesis 1.26 KJV). Or perhaps it’s all the fault of evil bankers, or globalisation, or multinational corporations, or power-hungry politicians.

Personally I blame reptilian overlords from Nibiru.


eBooks by Cosmic Rapture
(for kindle, tablet, smartphone or e-reader.)

NIGHTMERRIES: THE LIGHTER SIDE OF DARKNESS. This so-called "book" will chew you up, spit you out, and leave you twitching and frothing on the carpet. More than 60 dark and feculent fictions (read ‘em and weep) copiously and grotesquely illustrated.

AWAREWOLF & OTHER CRHYMES AGAINST HUMANITY (Vot could be Verse?). We all hate poetry, right? But we might make an exception for this sick and twisted stuff. This devil's banquet of adults-only offal features more than 50 satanic sonnets, vitriolic verses and odious odes.

MANIC MEMES & OTHER MINDSPACE INVADERS. A disturbing repository of quirky quotes, sayings, proverbs, maxims, ponderances, adages and aphorisms. This menagerie holds no fewer than 184 memes from eight meme-species perfectly adapted to their respective environments.

MASTRESS & OTHER TWISTED TAILS. An unholy corpus of oddities, strangelings, bizarritudes and peculiaritisms, including but not limited to barbaric episodes of herring-flinging and kipper-kissing. A cacklingly bizarre read that may induce fatal hysteria. Not Recommended!

FIENDS & FREAKS and serpents, dragons, devils, lobsters, anguished spirits, hungry ghosts, hell-beings, zombies, organ-grinders, anti-gods, gods and other horse-thieves you wouldn't want to meet in a dark cosmos. Immature Content! Adults Maybe.

HAGS TO HAGGIS. An obnoxious folio featuring a puke of whiskey-soaked war-nags, witches, maniacs, manticores and escapegoats. Not to mention (please don't!) debottlenecking and desilofication, illustrated. Take your brain for a walk on the wild side. Leave your guts behind.