Tormenting our children with the fruits of our evilness.
It’s not the first time I write about the mythical scenario of Saturn, devouring his child, and the way it is being told through the wonderful painting of Goya. In a different story about a father who wants to kill his child in order to save his throne, we meet king Laius who wanted his son Oedipus dead for that reason. Laius was not as determined as Saturn, and so he commanded someone else to do the dirty job for him (as kings do). The rest of this story is, of course, well known. Saturn is not Laius. Saturn ate his children without hesitation as soon as they were born so no one will be able to take over his throne. In a similar painting by Rubens, we see malice in the determined eyes of Saturn, as well as horror in the eyes of his child. Goya, on the other hand, shows a completely different situation, where the only thing seen from Saturn is blinding madness. He is standing inside a black hole, mindlessly devouring his child, which is reduced by now to a dead piece of flesh. There is no fear, not anymore, just emptiness, mindlessness, madness and formlessness. Goya’s Saturn does not think and is almost as empty as his child; all that is left from him is the automatic gnawing on the flesh.
The movie ‘Knowing’ begins with Professor Koestler looking through a telescope and finding the planet Saturn. He calls his son to see the ringed planet, and later on they discuss the possibilities of ever finding intelligent life other than our own human intelligence. After the list of necessary conditions for the creation of life on alien planets is given by the father to his son, Professor Koestler offers him hot dogs that he had prepared.
His son, so it seems, have just begun to understand how horrible and cruel our blindness is, when we are looking for life outside planet Earth while destroying or enslaving every other life form that lives with us on earth. He tells his father that he just decided to become vegetarian, and later on in the movie we will find out that no other option is available in order to save the world. Mercy and respect are the building blocks of a healthy civilization; we ask the same from others, we should embrace these virtues as well.
The Vietnam War – After a bomb kills his family, the father grabs his baby boy and run to the forest. Together, and detached from civilization, they live for forty years. The father could have told, of course, tales about life in the village, but to the son there is nothing but life in the forest. There is no civilization and no people.
They have lived on fruits and nuts for forty years, without any thing being taken by force from other living creatures. Culture, on the other hand, does not only provide the retrieved son with cigarettes, as we can see from the picture of this article, it is not only the ever-growing compendium of sale prices on meat, credit cards and Facebook pages, it is also the embodiment of lies and myths about those who do not follow its path. We, who declare with blunt scorn that becoming Vegan is a luxurious trend for people who can afford it, we use everything that our fattening culture gives us in order to harm the other living being, the world and our children as much as we can, ignoring those who live on vegan diet so that we can still believe it is an impossible way of life. We do not kill our own offspring ourselves, and instead we pay big corporations so that they can kill animals, pollute the world and make the world a hostile catastrophe for the time our children will take our burnt throne, while we’re enjoying a meat based dinner in the process. This is how you kill two birds with one stone.
While we’re doing this, we enjoy reading exotic, real stories that we mold into becoming a short anecdotes and fantasies, about distant tribes where the local culture allows the clan members to live a life that is better than our own. We read, smile, forget and move on to fighting about race, color, religion and whatever else we can find.
It is only in front of the naked catastrophe that we will finally agree to change our twisted ways. We have been told that the near future is going to force our children (our children! Not even our Grand children!) into a vegetarian diet due to food crisis and further economic disasters that will make it impossible to insist on indulging ourselves with the corpses of billions of our sentient victims. What a horrible mutation of arrogance and ignorance makes us stare into this coming age of distress with such blindness in our eyes! Instead of stopping this great avalanche right here and right now by releasing our animal slaves, we decided that we are going to enjoy everything their death has to offer us while we can, fantasizing about synthetic hamburgers and humane slaughter while we drink the blood of helpless beings that were once alive and now are burnt on our plates, deciding that it will our children that will have to deal with the mess we made. Perhaps it is Goya’s Saturn who did the right thing, biting his son’s head off instead of letting him face the pain and the horrible consequences of the disaster. This is not the behavior of responsible parents who love their children. This is what parents who want their children to pay for their sins do.
Ever heard this story? World War Two, There is a Jewish man who asks a non Jewish family to protect him from the Nazis. The family moves into his house, while he moves down to the basement, and there he gets warm meals every day, with updates from the events of the war. Each evening he hears about how the armies of both sides did, which battles were fought, who survived, who died. Even years after the war ended, the members of the family still brought that man food and drink to the basement, still told him about the horrible war outside and the hard battles that are still being fought with no end being seen on the horizon. This is how you get a free house, with the price of a daily lie.
What we are doing is the exact opposite. We tell our children how good, rich and vast the world is, while doing everything we can in order to hide the greatest holocaust of them all, and its consequences, deep in the basement, at least until it all blows in their face. We do not love our children.