Crooked timber

As we collect ever more evidence about times past and places afar, we find that there seem to have been no times or places when or where environmental edens existed (at least not since the original Eden). There seem to be no classes or cohorts of people who live or lived according to the romantic and nostalgic images we sometimes hold—images suggesting that at some time, somewhere, everyone practiced ecologically sound ways of life, respected others and avoided hierarchy, and leaders led without asserting dominance and power.

Before I get mail pointing to this or that individual, cult or small group as absolutely pure, let me say that we are here talking about civilizations, cultures and societies. Let me also say that my motive is not to detract attention from the noble few who set examples on which we can draw.


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