The Poetry Question

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Ralph Waldo Emerson: Maasai Warrior

Have you heard of the Maasai?

They are a tribe of people who live in Kenya, living a nomadic and extremely close to nature lifestyle, they live in huts made of straw and mud, eat semi-herded cattle and fend off all the beasts of the plains of Africa. They are the essence of humanity, the ultimate base of being a human.

You know when you are hesitant to grab a dog toy because your 3 year old Yellow Labrador snarled at you and you don’t want to get nipped at? Well the Maasai often steal food from lions, they take a bunch of scantily clad NBA Point Guards and they jump up and down in front of a group of feeding lions, then drag the carcass home and feast like the men they are. They can do this because they trust their fellow hunters, they grew up with them, lived in neighboring 9 x 15 huts with their families and goats, they are a team and they aren’t afraid of some measly lions. Fear is a shallow emotion, in terms of depth, you just need to have the strength to wade your way back to shore, fear is no excuse. Humanity would not be where it is if everyone lived in fear, if the Maasai were afraid of lions, they would be brunch for Simba.

Remember about when you dreaded taking liquid cold medicine as a kid? The Maasai give their babies and toddlers fresh, raw cows blood, from a cow that is still alive. They cook little to none of their food, no pastuerized milk and the whole daily blood thing. Modern culture has become too afraid of germs, if children are introduced into an environment with no germs, cleaned with bleach and potent chemicals, they are more likely to have weak immune systems and have allergies. Kids should eat dirt and drink from the sprinkler, kiss the dog and play in puddles. The Maasai do not use toothepaste and less than 1% of them have any cavities or tooth decay, which would be unheard of in any modernized culture. Don’t stop brushing your teeth, you’re not a Maasai tribesman, but think about how closely they live to being animals, still hunting for food and living on the run, in the wild, while still being surprisingly successful in terms of being a modern human.

The Maasai are a reminder of how simple we can live, how little humans need to survive and to thrive. They are a people who have never talked on a phone, figured out how to keep lions, hyenas and other predators away from their cattle and families with just sticks and stones. They do not know what it is to make minimum wage, so they can’t complain about it. They don’t know what having bad wifi connection is like, they’ve never been online, they’ve never seen internet porn. They have lived though, they have loved, they have made families and been happy. Life isn’t dependent on what material things you have, you can survive with a sticks, mud and some wild animals. Life is about the feelings given to you by nature and your community. The Maasai are transcendentalists and they don’t even know it.

Live without fear, live without dependence on materials, live with love in yourself and your peers.

Live like a Maasai.

2 comments on “Ralph Waldo Emerson: Maasai Warrior

  1. kiwiskan
    August 27, 2013

    not sure I’m ready for that…

  2. Pingback: Change the Life of Maasai kids | malaikaecotourism

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This entry was posted on August 27, 2013 by in COMMENTARY.

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