Dilemma of The Sumerian Scribes.

The invention of writing in ancient Sumer would not have been a gradual process. A stroke of genius, an afternoon off, and the world was never the same again.

You don’t make a mark that has a sound and leave the rest to your descendents. Once the threshold is crossed and marks have meaning there is no going back. It would have been entirely mindblowing for the people involved,  let alone the question, ‘ok, so what shall we say?’

‘If we die tomorrow, which , incidentally we might just with the Assyrians breathing down our neck, all macho and pumped up, what shall we say, at the end of our time…?

So they told the story of Gilgamesh…

And then the Assyrians came…

So,… what did they say?

What would you say if a massive warlike neighbour was about to descend upon you like a lion upon the flock?

Hey biblical metaphor, dude.Way to go!

Fuck off, I’m trying to create atmosphere here, you know…. dramatic narrative.

Well, knock yourself out my man…

Look, just be quiet and listen ok?

Whatever you say dude……..

So, your neighbours regard your flocks with lust….


….and check out your patch in a pointy, military appraisally kind of way. You will go down and not just you but your whole culture, your entire heritage and way of life. What do you do?

No fair, dude!

Oh for fugsake, what do you write as the FIRST BOOK EVER…while you have the chance…?

er,, one shot, right?

One shot. You’d probably go through several stages with it….

…and changes of underwear…

…my first kneejerk reaction would be to gather stuff up, catalogue and file… then I’d get pissed off in a terrified, self wetting kind of way, and then plan some heavy duty counter magic, pulling shi’ out of my sleeves with all kinds of incantations from way in the back of the archives..

Not written yet dude, by definition…

….probably involving selling my soul to some dubious character, with even dodgier connections. Then, I might just settle down and write about something from which those that came after me might learn something. …

Booyacasharrr! Stick it to the man before you die like a bi…

….the wise and compassionate old Sumerians (no blood or virgin sacrifices) saw the Assyrians coming and thought, ‘the best thing we can do is give them a gift. for whoever comes after us is our children.’ So they gave them a story to learn about themselves……. for us to learn about….ourselves.



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Psychotherapist/writer/artist/ author of, 'Going Mad to Stay Sane', a psychology of self-destructiveness, about to come into its third edition. Soon to be printed for the first time, 'Abundant Delicious.. the Secret and the Mystery', described by activist Satish Kumar as, ' A Tao of the Soul'. This book documents the archetypal country through which the process of individuation occurs and looks at the trials and tribulations we might expect on the way. In the meantime..... Narcissisim is the issue of our age. This blog looks at how it operates, how it can damage and how we may still fruit despite it.

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