I am finally getting back to my Save Our Home designs–this time featuring primates. Many of our ‘cousins’ are endangered and need help. The loss of habitat is the primary issue. There is a great deal of deforestation and encroachment that contributes to the demise of these beautiful animals: for that matter all that live in these forests are of course endangered too. Entire ecosystems are continuously being destroyed. And sadly, poachers are illegally hunting these animals to extinction to sell as bushmeat. This is illegal though they continue to get away with it.
Meanwhile, for now, consider helping monkeys, lemurs, great apes, any primate that is endangered. Check out The Bush Meat Project, Friends of the Earth, World Wildlife Federation, Save Animals Facing Extinction, Green Peace etc. Google the animal you specifically care about, and finds sites the sites that best suit your interests. Check out cafepress.com/earthandworldpeace if you are interested in any products with these designs on them. Another way of getting the word out is to get active, march, and wear clothing with messages on them, mine or someone else’s. I hope you are all doing well. With deep respect.
Look at the following pictures. Look in their eyes. Are they familiar to you? They are our cousins, and they are loosing their homes and killed for food–an illegal practice. Many youngsters loose their mothers, some are rescued. You can support these orphanages. Check online. Aren’t they beautiful?
Jane Goodall, Ted Talks – What Separates Us From Chimpanzee? Answer: Our sophisticated language. Jane Goodall “urges us to start using it to change the world.” I cannot agree more else this blog would not exist.
In the 1960s, Jane Goodall, a primatologist, was the first to live and study chimpanzees in the wild. One of her discoveries, of which there are many, was that Chimpanzee use and modify tools for specific purposes. Though she has studied them for over 50 years, and though she would rather be in the wild studying them today, she has chosen to use our specialty, sophisticated language, to help change the world by focusing on healing our planet. We must become compas-sionate stewards to all that lives on this planet.
Let’s quickly look at our nearest relative and discover just how intelligent and similar they are to us.
Ai (pronounced e) is the Japanese word for love and the name of a Chimpanzee who is considered to be the most skilled Chimpanzee in intellectual performance. Ai loves her computer, and is in essence addicted to it, just like many humans. She will leave her family to play on her computer. She plays games and other complex activities, and can solve them faster than some people. Even more interesting is that she doesn’t like making mistakes. If she gets a score that she’s not happy with, she asks to do it again so that she can improve her score. She does this whether or not food is used as a reward. Interestingly, she must be told in advance that there will not be a rewarded when she completes the task.
Jane Goodall explains that before discovering that chimpanzees make, use, and modify tools, the definition of humankind was “tool-maker”. In 1960, Louis and Mary Leakey, Kenyan paleo-anthropologist, demonstrated that humans evolved in Africa having found two hominid skulls dated as living 1.75 million years ago. Louis Leakey, replied to Jane’s findings, “Ah! Now we need to redefine man, redefine tool, or except chimpanzees as humans.”
Scientists have discovered that many Chimpanzees societies throughout Africa use tools, and each clan has different tools for different purposes.
Jane Goodall says, these patterns of behavior “are passed on from generation to generation through observation, imitation and practice. That is a definition human culture.”
Family life is similar to ours in many ways. Chimpanzees suckle their young for five years. For seven more years, these youngsters are emotionally dependent upon their moms at which time they learn as we do, i.e. from our mom’s during our dependent years. They remain bonded to their families for as long as they live which can be 60 years. They share their lives with their siblings.
They show true compassion and altruism. They “kiss, hold hands, pat others on the back, they swagger and shake their fists in the same context as humans,” says Jane Goodall.
She adds, Chimpanzees also have an emotional life including both mental and physical suffering. They experience happiness, sadness, fear and despair.
They cooperate with each other. The can recognize themselves in a mirror. Rather than the ‘other’, they recognized ‘self’. And, they have a sense of humor.
Bottomline, Jane Goodall is informing us that “Other sentient beings have personalities, minds and feelings.
And now for the message. “When we think about the ways that we use and abuse so many sentient beings on this planet it really gives cause for deep shame.”
An aside. One of the major ways we abuse people (‘other’s), specifically minorities, is to make them less than human, i.e. animals. Not all of us, but many. Therefore, in general there has been little regard for non-human sentient beings. How terribly arrogant.
Chimpanzees are disappearing due to deforestation, encroach-ment, and now because they have become a popular food item. Before, deforestation, human beings lived in harmony with their Chimpanzee relatives. However, these same people who have lost their homes, and hence their culture are those involved with the mass killing of chimpanzees for Bushmeat. They have to make a living somehow, since living as they did is no longer an option.
The damage we have done to the forest, to these people, to chimpanzees and the ecosystems in general. Shameful. The roads created to access these forests are now used to hunt chimps and transport their carcasses to market. Bushmeat preferred over domesticated meat–big bucks. Go to The Bushmeat Project for more information.
So, what do we do? Jane Goodall says, use our human specialty, sophisticated language, to inform people about what we are doing to our environment as a result of disregarding everything that allows the earth to do what it does naturally to be healthy. We must teach people to be wise stewards, and we are beginning to truly understand how to do this. Write. Speak. Create videos. Use our amazing abilities and our technologies to heal our world.
A problem that must be addressed is the increasing disconnection people have with the natural world. Jane Goodall asks us to get involved with the Roots and Shoots Project: a program designed to reconnect people to the natural world by teaching young people to care about our natural world– a hands on approach to learning about our environment, introducing and taking care of animals, and discovering and doing something for their local environments. Go to www.rootsandshoots.org
Jane Goodall, and so many other, including myself, believe that every single individual does have a role to play in healing all aspects of our environment. If not involved already, learn to love and have compassion for all life.
Jane Goodall says we can do this because, (1) human brains can solve our problems, (2) nature is resilient, and (3) we have an indomitable human spirit. Indomitable meaning impossible to subdue or defeat.
Lastly, she adds “Buy things that are ethical to buy and don’t buy those that are not.” To watch the video that this article is gleaned from Google Ted Talks JaneGoodall. With great respect, love and compassion.
Four out of six Gorilla species are now on the critically endangered list. For example, in the last twenty years, seventy percent (70%) of the Eastern Gorilla population is gone due to illegal hunting. There are many organizations that are working to help Gorillas: World Wildlife Fund, Dian Fossey’s Gorilla Fund, The Gorilla Organization and more. Check out Ten Ways to Help Mountain Gorillas.