The Natural Rebellion


Chrycka Harper, Poet & Literary CriticLast Modified: 01:57 a.m. DST, 28 February 2014

Baby Panda, Seven Star Park in Guilin, Photo by BageltamSunshine's rays gleam off the cold metal cage of the world's favorite baby panda, Bao Bao. Nestled within fake vegetation resembling a panda's natural habitat, the baby panda willingly participates in the scientists' daily lesson plan.

An audience of thousands venture to the National Zoo in Washington, DC to watch Bao Bao's progressive learning process. With brochures illustrating the daily lesson plans, the audience engages with the scientists on teaching Bao Bao how to be a panda.

When Bao Bao walks left, necks follow in unison. When he goes right, necks follow in unison. When Bao Bao sneezes, in unison, everyone reacts with “bless you.”

On this particular day, numbers of the audience reached an all-time high. Humans representing diverse backgrounds and cultures are in the National Zoo watching the baby panda's interaction with a soccer ball. A man unfortunately becomes an open toilet for a blackbird above him. The blackbird and we shall call her Eboni, lands on a tree within the lions' exhibit.

The lions are resting their heads because of the human attention towards Bao Bao. Eboni swoops down towards the King of the Jungle, a black lion that was strangely found within Ethiopia, then propels upward into the clear blue sky. Then the King rises onto his paws and unleashes a proud roar. Eboni flaps her wings to the rhythms of the roar. She spots her flock near the Washington Monument and joins them for a brief meeting. The birds diverge to meet with other species of the planet to relay one message:


Birds representing the iridescent spectrum deliver the message to creatures of all forms, shapes, and sizes. From the algae in the Pacific to the elephants in Africa, all domains of life receive the pertinent message.

Back in the zoo, members of the audience slightly shift their weight on their feet and stretch their backs while watching Bao Bao attempt to shoot a basketball into the hoop. A second roar erupts from the King's mouth then Eboni soon returns to move a switch that unlocks the cages.

Children remember their parents' warnings on public crying so they keep their growing hunger a secret as Bao Bao rolls around. Suddenly, the baby panda stops in action as the King erupts in a third roar- the loudest of all roars that the Universe has ever heard. Startled humans turn around to see nature surrounding them. Kings and Queens of the savannah, exotic plants of the rainforest, and tropical fish of the deep blue seas are silently staring at the human population. No one notices that Bao Bao leaves his cage and joins the King on his right, while Eboni rests on his left shoulder. No words need to be spoken to explain the purpose of this confrontation: nature is rebelling against the humans.

For centuries, nature received brutal treatment from humans. It remembers the baby stage of human civilization where all creatures lived in harmony and unison. Yet, events and circumstances that are not discussed in schools influenced the progression of humans' harsh manipulation, subjugation, exploitation, and oppression of nature.

Animals quietly laugh at the humans' idiotic view that they can rule the majority while they slowly plot their rebellion. Nature will never forget about the obstacles of organizing the creatures, but this day marks the heavily anticipated confrontation. No more excuses and no more silence. The time is now for Nature to demand better treatment from the humans.

This meeting serves as the Ultimatum. Humans must change their ways in order to live in harmony with Nature. Otherwise, Nature on Earth will end the Universe's experiment with human evolution, once and for all. This is the Natural Rebellion.

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The Perspective of Life


Looking out Window, Photo by Austin PixelAs Mark Twain said, “You can't depend on your judgment when your imagination is out of focus.” Often, if we take the time to be introspective, we will see that our perspective is colored by the experiences of our life which we project onto others and the world.

Malice Aforethought


Ayanna Nahmias, Editor-in-ChiefLast Modified: 00:16 AM EDT, 3 January 2012

“Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive” ~ Sir Walter Scott

In the world of predator and prey, the predator's desire to satiate their hunger leads them inexorable to kill. Unlike humans, the wild predator's desire to cull the weakest from the pack is purely instinctual.

By contrast, people who possess a desire to abuse others as a means to meet their own emotional inadequacies, seek out the weakest members of society to exploit. Their chosen prey can be children, the elderly, men or women who have been emotionally or physically abused.

This type of abuse is a human rights issue, but because the individuals seem to be willing participants, they are not traditionally viewed as victims. Often men and women who find themselves in adulterous or other inappropriate relationships play the role of victim or victimizer. When the two first meet, each tell lies which are sown in a garden of deceit with the hope of a relationship. The predator lies to his prey, and the prey lies to themselves by believing the lamb can lay unharmed with the lion.

Though abusive relationships affect people from all walks of life, this post shall focus on women. As a person who has suffered abuse during my formative years, I was often perceived as prey. Once I reached adulthood I engaged in unhealthy relationships until I received help. However, in all that time I never crossed the line with married or committed men nor did I tolerate physical abuse.

All relationships begin with chance or intentional meetings, followed by polite conversation during which people get to know each other. By contrast, the predator uses these interludes as a fact finding mission. During these 'chats' abuse victims unconsciously reveal the source of their pain because venting provides temporary relief from constant self-recrimination.

Predatory men exploit the information they glean by assuring women that they are not like the other men who have abused them in the past. They then proceed to fabricate a reality which leads them both down a slippery slope. If the man is married, the oft said and well known lies soon follow. "I am leaving my wife. We are getting a divorce. I am only staying for the children."

Once the woman is thoroughly invested, the man begins to make overtures toward a sexual relationship. When consummated it becomes nearly impossible for the women to extricate herself from the adulterous affair.  In addition to the mental subjugation, the woman becomes physically bonded to the man by a combination of two powerful hormones called oxytocin and vasopressin, also know as 'love hormones.'

An adulturous couple are much like the characters from the medieval tale Tristan and Isolde, who accidentally consumed a love potion and are turned into hopeless addicts. Even though they realized that Isolde's husband, the king, would punish their adultery with death, they had to have their love fix. It also stands to reason that humans are conditioned by their experiences, which may be the reason some people tend to date the same “type" of partner over and over again.

“Some of our sexuality has evolved to stimulate that same oxytocin system to create female-male bonds,” according to neuroscientist Dr. Larry Young.  He posits that sexual foreplay and intercourse stimulate the same parts of a woman’s body that are involved in giving birth and nursing."

This hormonal hypothesis, is by no means proven fact, but this “cocktail of ancient neuropeptides,” like the oxytocin released during foreplay or orgasm," would help explain females’ desire to have sex even when they are not fertile." Being Human: Love: Neuroscience reveals all:  (Nature 457, 148 (8 January 2009)

In Western societies where polygamy is not an acceptable norm, the women who find themselves in the position of mistress remain quiet for fear of reprisal from the wives, and judgment from people who would blame them for their plight. Thus, many women spend years with married men who father their children and build parallel lives with them without fully committing. In the case of a friend, she only discovered her father's duplicity at his funeral when his other family arrived.

This post does not seek to absolve either adulterer of responsibility, but in the case of a man who preys upon the emotional weakness of a damaged woman, he is nothing short of a predator. His indifference to the collateral damage his actions cause to his primary family, to the extramarital children he fathers, and to the woman he is exploiting, is nothing short of malice aforethought.