Never Other Than A Whole Being

Often weary of how humans elevate themselves as superior using self referential (not to mention self reverential) logic, I was moved by this passage I stumbled across in The Territorial Imperative:

“No man or other animal lives as other than a whole being. If I am a dominant male lion with a vast impressive mane, then at once I am a predator seeking candidates for my next meal, or I shall grow unbearably hungry; I am also prey, and I must keep a wary nostril for men carrying guns, or I shall end up decorating somebody’s wall; I am a proprietor, and I must keep rival lions out of my hunting territory, or game will grow scarce; I am a husband, and when one of my wives comes into heat then I must entertain her; I am a father, and with due regard to future lion generations I must brook no nonsense from my cubs while teaching them all I can; and I am also a social being for, sad to confess, I am deathly slow on my feet and an appallingly bad hunter except at close quarters, so I am dependent on the assistance of my wives and my friends, and whether I like them or not I must somehow get along with them. If I am a lion I am many things at once, and if I am a man I am even more. And so it may seem a temptation toward unreal simplification to select a single aspect of the human condition with which to absorb ourselves. And indeed it is most surely a temptation and an almighty hazard.”

Rome, 1966

We are all never less than whole beings. Indeed…