Human Exceptionalism

Those Exceptional 25,000 Year-Old Humans

We took in the awe inspiring cave of Pesh-Merle today. What a moving experience to view the sacred art of our long ago ancestors.

Clearly, they appreciated the grandeur of the large animals with which they interacted or hunted–mammoths, ox, bison, reindeer, horses, etc.–quested for meaning, appreciated individuality (the traced hands in several locations, the casts of one taken from above the Spotted Horses fit mine nearly exactly), and the tour guide said, used the cave as a place to express their spirituality.  There were a few abstract symbols too, kind of a very crude hieroglyphic, which also appear in other local caves, but the scientists have no idea what they might mean.  We also gazed upon 20,000 year-old human foot prints of a child and an adult, a wall deeply scratched by huge ancient bears, a depiction on the wall of  “wounded man” seemingly taken down by spears (also appears in another cave), and one of the earliest depictions of the obviously female form scratched in the rock of one of the deeper chambers.  It also seemed to our untrained eyes that many of the horses were pregnant.  Simply amazing.

No photographing allowed in the cave, but the scenery above ground wasn’t too bad either!


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