The need to alter our perception of reality goes back to the origin of civilization, or more precisely to caveman MagoK.
One day MagoK got bored of staring at nothingness while waiting for his woman GogoK to come back from picking berries. MagoK realized that he hardly ever caught a deer or any other animal, instead he fantasized about it in his cave paintings. It was GogoK who provided for the family and their baby.
Deep in MagoK’s mind (which was not yet conscious of itself) this division of duties produced nagging doubts about himself. He was forced to pander to his low self-esteem with existential proclamations of his self-value. Yes, he had a place in the world. But what was it?
Hundreds of thousands of collective hours of self-doubt finally led MagoK to chew on poisonous berries that altered the perception of himself. It is not clear exactly how this happened the first time, except that he chose to taste the “forbidden fruit” out of sheer boredom for the routine. The sun would go up and down. The baby would scream. The woman would leave and return. Yawn. Why not try this berry instead?
Some theories claim that one of the first hallucinogenics to hit the market was Amanita Muscaria, a mushroom that generates flying reindeer, non-existent friends, illusions of power and grandeur. Others claim that MagoK may have eaten fermented, poisonous berries.
The bottom line is that life changed for MagoK. It became an adventure – first. His existential doubts vanished. Yes, he was the carrier of the seed. The patriarch. By being able to “control” his reality (read: escape) he became self-confident. He could catch a lizard, naked, during full moon – and roar.
Other cavemen observed MagoK’s behavior around the camp. They condemned him in public, but were secretly jealous of him. He seemed free, unperturbed. MagoK paid almost no attention to his wife and baby when we was “under the berries,” and wasn’t even hazed when Gogok went after him with a big stick.
After much grunting and cogitation, the rest of the male tribe nodded in unison and decided to try the same poisonous berries. Soon, berries became an acceptable form of life. In fact, it became a ritual. Unfortunately, the collective addiction prevented the rest of the tribe from noticing Magok’s inevitable decline. He had trouble reaching the tree where he liked to pee, and was spending most of his time inside the cave, hatching plans to dominate, well, everything.
The shift to tribal experimentation with mind altering chemicals was the onset of the patriarchal age that would produce several millennia of female repression. Not just figuratively, but literally.
Today the patriarchal age has produced a system of male governance that is designed to invest, spend, and plan society’s activities around war: the ultimate ego game for patriarchs who are addicted to distractions and self-grandeur. You have to protect your tribe, your land, and of course yourself – pre-emptively if necessary.
Take United States in the 21st century. With over 1000 military bases around the world today, some $4 trillion spent in a senseless war in the last decade, and a pharmaceutical industry that cranks more than $400 billion per annum to keep its citizens dazed, U.S. is a direct generational effect of MagoK’s berry addiction.
The only way to treat patriarchs and patriarchal societies is to call them out by their real name and then treat them accordingly. It is time for MagoK to go to rehab.