Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A rant on genes.

My face resembles my ancestors. My thoughts and feelings use some of the same synapses, conduits and processes. As genes flow down from one generation to the next, I carry some of the same gifts, some of the same afflictions.

Yet I know nothing about my ancestors ...

I do not know if they succumbed to their afflictions, living a life of poverty while the world went on around them. Or did they aspire with their gifts, fight off any sense of disparity and conquer the world around them? Or did they simply get along with a laugh and a smile?

I want this world to be of my own making, but it would be nice to see how my ancestors handled certain situations. Roads I should consider, maybe roads I should stay away from ...

But I am different from many of them. They may have been racist, they may have been less educated, in a world with less technology, in a world with more or less despair, more or less known problems. The possibilities could go on.

But one great member of my family smiling at me through my genes would be nice. Does not everyone wish his or her ancestors overcame great obstacles. Does it not give the sense of a certain special attribute. My brother and sisters have red hair. Does that mean I am Irish, and the gift of reading and writing, the gift of literature fuels my heart and fires my existence? Or is the gift of literature just a stereotype fitted within a culture, meant to offset the overpowering culture of the drink that followed that culture.

Or are my genes, viking genes? The ruthless genes that sought out adventure and warfare. My brother has committed his life to the military. And I have a life committed to rock climbing and going on crazy adventures (if I can actually work it out to go on some.)

Yet my attitude of life is to focus on today and now. No past. No future. No beginning. No end. I am one with my ancestors. I am my own self.

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Ambitiously enduring.