Tag Archives: melancholy

Life in Captivity

I know its been a while since I have posted, which is directly related to the following post. I seemed to have locked myself away from the more intellectual and quizzical parts of my mind in an act of self-preservation. I found that contrary to my intuition, blogging about my worries and concerns in the world actually made me feel even more insignificant.  It made me realize that many of my inner circle were cut from the same wool as the sheep I was criticizing. I retracted from blogging in a childish effort to ignore the fact that no one cared. No one cared about America crumbling, humanity falling, or my opinions of the former.  I poured myself into work, billiards, and alcohol in order to blend in with masses, but I could not contain my howl. I am back again to call out to all the other wolves out there searching for their pack.  So here it goes, my first howling in a while.

Although many physicians believe that the mental illness known as depression is widely over diagnosed, it is easy to ascertain that there seems to be a decrease of the overall happiness in the world.  Our overall mood as a species could be best described as melancholy or despondent.  I will admit that I am no psychologist nor do I have any intention of using actual data to substantiate the following conclusion. I am simply an observer of the world and what I conclude seems all too fitting.  It seems to me that we,as a species, are so far removed from our natural behavior and environment that we have literally forgot how to be human.  We have caged ourselves in and now rot away in self enforced captivity.

We now live in an alien and artificial environment ignoring our instincts to hunt, to run, and to function in a pack.  We have ignored the pull to the wild, made homes out of our cages, and have become bored with a world that is filled with excitement. This type of despondency is not unique to humans.  It won’t take long for someone searching the web to find hundreds of articles about the negative impact of captivity on the mental health of animals from pets to animals at your city zoo.  Most animals, when housed in small barren recreations of their environments, will sleep and lie around more, lash out, or behave in various ways unique to captivity.  The only difference between our zoo friends and us is that we choose our cages. We willingly lock ourselves in to tiny apartments, in a cramped city, working a job we have no desire doing for just enough money to pay for our enclosures.  The worst part is that we have been caging ourselves in for so long, that most people believe it to be our natural environment.

I will not allow myself to be caged any longer; however, just like releasing an animal into the wild of years of captivity, I must start slow. I will begin this fall by backpacking the Shenandoah in my home state of Virginia, I will hunt and use the meat to feed my family, and I will continue howling in hope that I find my pack.


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