The oldest humans
This story, !Gaunu-tsaxau, the baboons and the /Kaggen, comes from the San Bushman people of southern Africa. Genetic evidence shows that the Bushmen are the direct descendants of the earliest branch of anatomically modern humans, who evolved about 200,000 years ago. Recently a 44,000-year-old set of tools was discovered which is identical to the tools used by 19th century Bushmen. This proves that the technology of 19th century Bushmen (who told this story) is the same as that of early behaviorally modern humans, who first appeared about 50,000 years ago.
Bushman rock paintings. Southern africa
Photo source: unknown
San Bushmen, Namibis, on traditional hunt. Southern africa
The content of this story confirms that it was composed by hunter-gatherers. There is, in addition, some genetic evidence that the click language in which this story is told may be a direct descendant of the earliest languages.
There are some marked parallels beween this story and myths from ancient Egypt – see below. Because bushman culture is older it is possible that the bushman story was a source for the Egyptian myths.
None of the above proves the age or the source of this story but it does prove that the story was preserved within – and therefore expresses something essential about – a culture as old as humanity itself.
At the same time, as I will show, the story refers repeatedly to the creation of consciousness which is a highly sophisticated attainment. Consciousness here means a conscious relationship with the the collective unconscious, which relationship, Jung showed, constitutes individuation, a potential but difficult-to-realize maturation of the personality. Individuation looks different in different individuals and in different cultures but, beneath the differences, it is the product of the same relationship.
Individuation began with behaviorally modern humans
I show elsewhere on this website that there are paleolithic figurines which show strong evidence of individuation.
Lion Man statuette.
From cave in Hohlenstein, southern Germany. 40,000 BC. 33 cm; time to carve: at least 400 hours. Ulmer Museum.
Photo: Thomas Stephan, Copyright Ulmer Museum
As I explain in an ebook on individuation and visual art the dynamic form of this figurine (as opposed to what it depicts) provides a visual model of individuation. The figurine depicts a chimera – two bodies in one – which also refers to individuation because it shows the realization of an archetypal, in this case lion-like, dimension of the personality.
The sphinx, also a lion-human chimera, signified Kingship in ancient Egypt. (The marked parallels between bushman and Egyptian stories come later). The King/Pharaoh was himself both man and god and thus, in psychological terms, symbolized individuation. The historian Lewis Mumford argued that individual consciousness began in western history with the Pharaohs.
Great Sphinx of Tanis.
Granite. Tanis, Old Kingdom, c. 2600 BC. Louvre, Paris.
Copyright: 2003, Musee du Louvre, Erich Lessing.
The sphinx was associated with Sekhmet who was a lioness, the fiercest hunter known to Egyptians. She protected pharaohs and led them in war. She was known as ‘Before whom evil trembles,’ and ‘She who mauls.’
Rampant Sekhmet (with King Tutankhamun’s head?) crushing enemies of several ethnicities.
Tomb of King Tutanhhamun, ca 1340 BC
Photo: source unknown
Sekhmet was also a solar diety, daughter of Ra the Sun God, who on one occasion burnt up the people with Ra’s fiery eye.
Sekhmet with sun-disk and cobra-crown. Temple of Kom Ombo, Ptolemaic dynasty, ca 100 BC
Photo: Gerard Ducher
Here Sekhmet’s chimera is reversed: she has a lioness’s head and the body of a woman. Her image is fluid because it is symbolic, more like a poem than prose.
Individuation is sometimes symbolized by gorillas which dominate by being big and imposing. In a man’s dream individuation was suggested by a wolf-hawk (a hawk with a large wolf’s head) which flew down from high above, landed on the man’s hand and stared at him.
In Native American tradition, a person gains individual spiritual wisdom when he or she meets a totem animal.
The /Kaggen of our Bushman story sometimes took the form of a praying mantis which, as a hunter, is king amongst insects. A praying mantis can kill and eat a lizard or a hummingbird. The /Kaggen-mantis is like a chimera.
Male Praying Mantis. 2007, European.
Bushmen were small, slender people who related modestly to their ecosystem. This is expressed by their heroic god, a praying mantis rather than a lioness.
Chimera, consciousness, leadership
Each of these chimeras (together with totem animals and the /Kaggen-mantis) shows symbolically that when a person undergoes individuation he or she becomes a leader. That person has found his or her own unique way to be, has discovered a new relationship to the inner world and has thereby gained special authority.
The evidence given above shows that individuation is as old as behaviorally modern humans. This is less surprising than it may seem: from the beginning we behaviorally modern humans have succeeded – even to excess – because our culture could adapt so swiftly. Cultural adaptation is led by individuals who, having themselves become more conscious, are able to defy collective wisdom.
Consciousness means more than developing more powerful technology. Consciousness supports power and dynamism but tends to integrate it with wholeness, wisdom, balance, harmony and love. It is not consciousness that leads us to destroy our planet but rather the devouring tendency of the unconscious. I say more about this in my article Rona long-teeth.
The devouring unconscious is symbolized by Kali. Her image helps to make conscious the terrible aspect of the mother archetype.
Kali standing on Parvati and Shiva. Miniature painting on paper. Kailsh Raj, Kangra School.
Photo: Exotic India
A nuclear bomb is the devouring unconscious run amok.
Licorne shot. July 3, 1970, French Polynesia
Photo: French military
!Gaunu-tsaxau, the /Kaggen and the baboons. A Bushman tale interpreted
Specimens of Bushman Folklore, by W.H.I. Bleek and L.C. Lloyd, , at sacred-texts.com
The /Kaggen was the trickster hero (a god) of Bushman culture. !Gaunu-tsaxau was his son.
The father sent his son to gather sticks to throw at ‘the people who sit on their heels’. The baboons asked the son what he was doing and then, amongst themselves, discussed his answer at length.
Baboon (Papio cynocephalus) troop. Lake Manyara, Tanzania
Photo: Louw Photography
Therefore, a baboon who feeding went past him, — he who was an older baboon, — he was the one to whom !Gaunu-tsaxau came. Then he questioned !Gaunu-tsaxau. And !Gaunu-tsaxau told him about it, that he must fetch for his father sticks, that his father might take aim at the people who sit upon their heels.
Therefore, he (the baboon) exclaimed:
[“I must”, the narrator here explained, “speak in my language, because I feel that the speech of the baboons is not easy.”]
“Hie! Come to listen to this child.” And the other one said:
To the child yonder.
To the child yonder.”
And he reached them. He said: “What does this child say?” And the child said: “I must fetch for my father sticks, that my father may take aim at the people who sit upon their heels.”
Then the baboon said: “Tell the old man yonder that he must come to hear this child.” Then the baboon called out: “Hie! Come to hear this child.” Then the other one said:
To the child yonder.”
He came up; he exclaimed: “What does this child say?” And the other one answered: “This child, he wishes, he says, to fetch sticks for his father, that his father may take aim at the people who sit upon their heels.”
And this baboon said: “Tell the old man yonder that he must come to hear this child.” Then this other baboon called out: “O person passing across in front! come to listen to this child.” Therefore, the other one said:
To the child yonder.”
And he came up. He said: “What does this child say?” And the other one answered: “This child wants, he says, to fetch sticks  for his father, that his father may take aim at the people who sit upon their heels.”
Therefore, this baboon exclaimed “It is ourselves! Thou shalt tell the old man yonder that he shall come to listen to this child.”
Therefore, this other baboon called out: “Ho! come to listen to this child.” Then the other one said:
To the child yonder.”
He came up to the other people on account of it. He said: “What does this child say?” And the other one answered: “This child, he wants, he says, to fetch  sticks for his father, that his father may take aim at the people who sit upon their heels.”
Therefore, this baboon exclaimed (with a sneering kind of laugh): “O ho! It is ourselves! Thou shalt quietly go to tell the old man yonder, that he may come to listen to this child.”
And the other one called out: “O person passing across in front! come to listen to this child.” And the other said:
To the child yonder.”
And he went up to the other people; he said: “What does this child say?” And the other one answered: “This child, he wants, he says, to fetch sticks for his father, that his father may take aim at the people who sit upon their heels.”
Then that baboon, — he felt that he was an old baboon — therefore, he said, when the other one had said: “This child wanted, he said, to fetch sticks for his father,” therefore the other one (the old baboon) exclaimed: “What? it is we ourselves; ourselves it is! Ye shall strike the child with your fists.”
The reiteration at the beginning of the story shows that the baboons’ action was collective, only achieved after much talk. The collective is not creative; everybody thinks the same and takes comfort from the crowd around them.
Though the story was created by apparently simple people, it uses subtle mockery to say that, when they act collectively, people are like baboons. This is a lesson modern humans have still to learn.
That interpretation is confirmed by a repetition which follows (the same psychological point is made by means of a new image; when we find a series of different images repeating the same point we can be more confident that we are on track): the /Kaggen and the /Kaggen’s son are each alone amongst strangers, each forced to act without the support of any collective. Their solitude is contrasted with the collective life of the baboons.
The “authors” of this tale saw that baboons do not individuate and used them as an economical device to portray the collective. The story emphasizes that it is the older baboons – those who have learned from experience – who understand the /Kaggen’s intention and direct the other baboons. In the collective we learn by repeated experience, or by knowledge handed down from others with more experience than ourselves.
Individuation is quite different: a radical new development arises within an individual and then transforms the existing order. This apparently naive story is comparing the two forms of learning to show how they differ.
While members of a collective are conscious in the sense that they are not literally asleep, they are unconscious in the sense that they are not paying attention to their inner life. At a football game, for example, each fan’s awareness is fused with that of the group.
Therefore, they were striking !Gaunu-tsaxau with their fists on account of it; they hit with their fists, breaking his head. And another struck with his fist, knocking out !Gaunu-tsaxau’s eye, the and the child’s eye in this manner sprang (or rolled) away.
Thus !Gaunu-tsaxau, the son of the Bushmen’s main god, was brutalized and killed by the baboons.
There are many detailed parallels between this Bushman story from southern africa and Egyptian myth from north africa. Parallels might have emerged because these myths are based upon common archetypes but the internal evidence (see below) suggests that the myths themselves have a common ancestor. In that case the more archaic bushman version would be closer to the common ancestor.
When the Egyptian gods Seth and Horus fought, Seth stole Horus’s left eye and divided it into parts.
Text on egyptian images adapted from: hollywoodsubliminals.wordpress.com/eye-of-horus/
There are also parallels with christian myth. !Gaunu-tsaxau’s death at the hands of the baboons was like Christ’s death. Edinger (in Ego and Archetype ), showed that the crucifixion symbolizes mortificatio, a crucial stage of individuation.
Crucifixion and Last Judgement. Jan van Eyck. Detail. Probably a late work, early 1430s, finished after his death.
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Then this baboon exclaimed: “My ball! my ball! “Therefore, they began to play a game at ball,  while the child died; the child lay still. They said (sang):
“And I want it,
Whose ball is it?
And I want it,
Whose ball is it?
And I want it.”
The other people said:
“My companion’s ball it is,
And I want it,
My companion’s ball it is,
And I want it,”
while they were playing at ball there with the child’s eye.
Here is more repetition, together with paradox and irony. All that survived of the child was his eye which is a symbol of consciousness (repetition) because it opens when we wake and because it sees. Because they were unconscious the baboons were destructive but, through their brutality, they transformed !Gaunu-tsaxau into the essence of consciousness (paradox). Then they played an unconscious ball game with the eye (irony).
Black glass bead with three blue ‘eyes’. Phoenician, found in Turkmenistan
Photo: Silk Road Heritage
Other myths repeat the idea that the brutality of the unconscious advances consciousness. In the Polynesian myth Rona long-teeth:
a young man evolved to higher awareness because most of his body was eaten by a female cannibal.
The point is that the unconscious contains and nurtures all potentials, including the potential for consciousness.
The /Kaggen was waiting for the child. Therefore, the /Kaggen lay down at noon. Therefore, the /Kaggen was dreaming about the child, that the baboons were those who had killed the child; that they had made a ball of the child’s eye; that he went to the baboons, while the baboons played at ball there with the child’s eye.
The /Kaggen was guided by a dream. Individuation is an archetypal possibility, the unfolding of which seems to be arranged by the true center of the personality which center Jung called the Self. Empirical evidence (from analyzing dreams in therapy) shows that the Self behaves as if it understood us better than we understand ourselves. A dream functions as a message from the Self.
Bow and arrow
Therefore, he arose; he took up the quiver, he slung on the quiver; he said, “Rattling along,  rattling along,” while he felt that he used formerly to do so, he used to say, “Rattling along.”
Bushman bow, quiver, poison-tipped arrows (with two Maasi arrows). Namibia, Botswana or South africa
Photo: Spaniel man
The /Kaggen’s rattling arrows were the sound of technology. He carried phallic tools of penetration and discrimination which would lead to greater consciousness. The /Kaggen was a trickster god and technology is a trick which can increase awareness.
Then, when he came into sight, he perceived the baboons’ dust, while the baboons were playing at ball there with the child’s eye. Then the /Kaggen cried on account of it, because the baboons appeared really to have killed the child. Therefore, they were playing at ball there with the child’s eye. Therefore, when he came into sight, he perceived the baboons’ dust, while the baboons were playing at ball there with the child’s eye. Therefore he cried about it.
To be conscious of his loss, the father had to grieve for his son. Consciousness is not just a matter of intellect but equally requires feeling. Thus the father’s tears represent the creation of consciousness.
Again there are remarkable parallels with Egyptian myth. Horus’s right eye symbolized the sun and was associated with the sun god Re; it became the Eye of Re. Re was the ‘father of the gods’ and the father of humanity. All human life (that is, all consciousness, see below) grew from his sweat or tears.
Once when the Eye of Re did not return, Re sent two other gods to get it. The eye resisted, and in the struggle shed tears, from which men and women grew.
The eye of the sun represents the archetypal potential for illumination or consciousness. The image shows that consciousness began to incarnate when the eye of the sun shed tears of feeling which would fall to earth. Humans represent incarnated consciousness because they are mortals who can worship the gods, that is, hold the archetypes in consciousness.
Eye of Re
Photo: source unknown
And he quickly shut his mouth; he thoroughly dried the tears from his eyes, while he desired that the baboons should not perceive tears in his eyes; that he appeared to have come crying, hence tears were in his eyes; so that he might go to play at ball with the baboons, while his eyes had no tears in them.
The /Kaggen concealed his consciousness from the collective. As consciousness develops the collective tends to attack it because the collective recognizes that it is a threat to the existing order. So the /Kaggen had to hide his grief.
Restoring the eye
Then he, running, came up to the baboons, while the baboons stared at him, because they were startled at him . Then, while the baboons were still staring at him, he came running to a place where he laid down the quiver; he took off his kaross [skin cloak], he put down the kaross, he, grasping, drew out the feather brush which he had put into the bag, he shook out the brush, he played with the ball.
Like his arrows, the /Kaggen’s other tools suggest that his culture supported individuation. The baboons’ culture did not.
He called out to the baboons, why was it that the baboons were staring at him, while the baboons did not play with the ball, that the baboons might throw it to him.
Then the baboons looked at one another, because they suspected why he spoke thus. Then he caught hold of the ball, when the ball had merely flown to another baboon, when this [the first] baboon had thrown the ball to the other.
Then the child’s eye, because the child’s eye felt that it was startled, on account of his father’s scent, it went playing about; the baboons trying to get it, missed it. Then one baboon, he was the one who caught hold of it, he threw it towards another.
Then the /Kaggen merely sprang out from this place, the /Kaggen caught hold of the child’s eye, the /Kaggen, snatching, took the child’s eye. Then the /Kaggen whirled around the child’s eye; he anointed the child’s eye with [the perspiration of] his armpits.
The father protected his son’s eye, enlivened it with his own body fluids as though fertilizing it or blessing it.
In Christian myth God’s blessing was “This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased.” This means that Christ, who represented consciousness and individuation, was the most precious potential of the unconscious.
In egyptian myth
Thoth, a god who took the form of a baboon, restored the eye with his fingers or by spitting on it.
Horus’s left eye is linked to the moon and its cycle of disappearing and being restored.
The restored eye – Wadjat eye or sound eye – became a symbol for reestablishment of ordered conditions after disorder, that is, the re-establishment of consciousness after a period of darkness.
Wadjet eye. Artist: Jeff Dahl
When Horus gave the Wadjet eye to his dead father Osiris, Osiris ate it and was restored to life.
(We will see that the /Kaggen restored his son to life from his eye). Thus the Wadjet eye became the guarantee of regeneration of life, the quintessence of gifts, and a symbol of offerings. Osiris’ regeneration symbolizes the renewal of consciousness.
Frequently, in the art of the later New Kingdom, a personified eye presents incense or other offerings. Then the eye represents the deceased as he kneels before the throne of Osiris.
Personified Eye of Horus presents incense offering to Osiris. 1200-1150 BC. XIX Dynasty. Sarcófago de Senbi, Reino Medio, madera pintada, 63 x 212 cm. Egyptian Museum, Cairo.
Photo: source unknown.
As sacred solar animals, baboons are frequently shown presenting Horus’s eye to the rising sun. Like the Wadget eye, the rising sun represents consciousness’s renewal.
Thoth presents Wadjet eye to the rising sun.
Photo: source unknown.
Because there are so many parallel details in the Egyptian and Bushmen myths, it is highly improbable that each arose independently from archetypal suggestion. (When parallel myths do evolve independently, they differ in the details; the parallels occur in the underlying themes.) Therefore, because of the chronology of the two cultures, and because the Bushmen myth is strongly associated with the hunter-gatherer lifestyle, it seems very likely that the Egyptian myth is an elaboration of the Bushman myth.
Then he threw the child’s eye towards the baboons, the child’s eye ascended, the child’s eye went about in the sky; the baboons beheld it above, as it played about above in the sky. And the child’s eye went to stand yonder opposite to the quiver; it appeared as if it sprang over the quiver, while it stood inside the quiver’s bag. 
The son’s eye went into the sky, demonstrating its spirit/knowledge aspect, and then hid in the father’s quiver of spiritual tools. This is more repetition which confirms yet again that the eye represents consciousness.
In Christian myth Christ ascended to heaven. Edinger showed that the ascension represents the sublimatio, the radical renewal of consciousness which is also part of individuation.
Photo: source unknown
Then the baboons went to seek for it. The /Kaggen also sought for it, while the baboons sought for it. Then all the baboons were altogether seeking for the child’s eye. They said: “Give my companion the ball.”  The baboon whose ball it was, he said: “Give me the ball.” 
The /Kaggen said: “Behold ye! I have not got the ball.” The baboons said: “Give my companion the ball.” The baboon whose ball it was, he said: “Give me the ball.”
Then the baboons  said that the /Kaggen must shake the bag, for the ball seemed to be inside the bag. And the /Kaggen exclaimed: “Behold ye! Behold ye! the ball is not inside the bag. Behold ye!” while he grasped the child’s eye, he shook, turning the bag inside out. He said: “Behold ye! Behold ye! the ball cannot be inside the bag.”
The /Kaggen plays a magic trick on them. Consciousness expands when we find that things are not as they seem. Consciousness itself is a form of magic which transforms everything it touches. This is another repetition.
Then this baboon exclaimed: “Hit the old man with fists.” Then the other one exclaimed: “Give my companion the ball! “while he struck the head of the /Kaggen.
Then the /Kaggen exclaimed: “I have not got the ball,” while he struck the baboon’s head.
Lying also expands consciousness: when we lie, holding the truth privately in our awareness, we have to be more conscious of the difference between our inner knowledge and our outer presentation.
Therefore, they were all striking the /Kaggen with their fists; the /Kaggen was striking them with his fist.
Then the /Kaggen got the worst of it; the /Kaggen exclaimed: “Ow! Hartebeest’s Children!  ye must go! !kau. !Yerri-ggu!  ye must go!” [his skin bag and other tools must flee] while the baboons watched him ascend; as he flew up, …
Again the /Kaggen’s ascension represents the renewal of consciousness.
… as he flew to the water.
Then he popped into the water on account of it; while he exclaimed: “I |ke, tten !khwaiten !khwaiten, !kui ha i |ka!”  “Then he walked out of the water; he sat down; he felt inside bag; he took out the child’s eye; he walked on as he held it; he walked, coming up to the grass at the top of the water’s bank ; he sat down. He exclaimed: “Oh wwi ho!”  as he put the child’s eye into the water. “Thou must grow out, that thou mayest become like that which thou hast been.” 
Being immersed and emerging from the water, like baptism, symbolizes being reborn to a new level of consciousness.
Baptism of Christ
Painting: source unknown
Recounting the story
Then he walked on; he went to take up kaross, he threw it over his shoulder; be took up the quiver, he slung on the quiver; and, in this manner, he returning went, while he returning arrived at home.
He reclaimed all the tools which promote consciousness.
Then the young Ichneumon exclaimed: “Who can have done thus to my grandfather, the /Kaggen, that the /Kaggen is covered with wounds?” Then the /Kaggen replied: “The baboons were those who killed grandson, !Gaunu-tsaxau; I went [the /Kaggen speaks very sadly and slowly here], as they were playing at ball there with grandson’s eye; I went to play at ball with them. Then grandson’s eye vanished. Therefore, the baboons said that I was the one who had it; the baboons were fighting me; therefore, I was fighting them; and I thus did, I flying came.”
As the Ichneumon asked questions and the /Kaggen related his adventure its strangeness became the more apparent. Through this dramatic device (used frequently by Shakespeare) the adventure resonates in our minds and its symbolic meaning becomes more apparent.
Then |Kuammang-a said: “I desire thee to say to grandfather, Why is it that grandfather continues to go among strangers [literally, people who are different]?”
He highlighted the cultural clash. Such a clash sparks awareness.
Then the /Kaggen answered: “Thou dost appear to think that yearning was not that on account of which I went among the baboons;” while he did not tell |Kuammang-a and the others that he came and put the child’s eye into the water.
The /Kaggen was dissembling again. He was also speculating about what they thought of his motivations (probing into their consciousness) while withholding information from them. Thus he focussed on their individual inner awareness and upon his own.
Then he remained there at home, while he did not go to the water. Then he went there, while he went to look at the place where he had put in the child’s eye. And he approached gently, while he wished that he might not make a rustling noise. Therefore, he gently came. And the child heard him, because he had not come gently when afar off; and the child jumped up, it splashed into the water. Then the /Kaggen was laughing about it, while his heart yearned for the child. And he returned; altogether returned.
The child’s acute hearing detected his father while the /Kaggen was still distant and not yet thinking to be quiet. This emphasizes the consciousness of the child and the relative unconsciousness of the /Kaggen. The child represents a new level.
The /Kaggen’s laughter and yearning heart also represent new developments of consciousness (new ways of perceiving).
Then the child grew; it became like that which it had formerly been. Then the /Kaggen came; while he came to look; and he in this manner walking came. While he came walking and looking, he espied the child, as the child was sitting in the sun. Then the child heard him, as be came rustling along; the child sprang up, the child entered the water. And he looking stood ….
More looking, more absorbing the quality of the child, more cultivation of awareness.
….. he went back, he went; he went to make for the child a front kaross (or apron), that and a ||koroko.  He put the things aside; then he put the front kaross into a bag, that and the ||koroko; he in this manner went; he in this manner came he approached gently.
Photo: Elizabeth Marshall Thomas
The /Kaggen brought clothing which, as for Adam and Eve, suggests more awareness of the child’s nakedness. Costume is connected to theater. The body is covered to indicate meaning and consciousness grows.
Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Hieronymus Bosch
Photo: source unknown
Father and son
And, as he approached gently, he espied the child lying in the sun, as the child lay yonder, in the sun, opposite the water. Therefore, he gently came up to the child. And the child heard him, as his father gently came. And the /Kaggen, when the child intended to get up, the /Kaggen sprang forward, he caught hold of the child. And he anointed the child with his scent; he anointed the child; be said: “Why art thou afraid of me? I am thy father; I who am the /Kaggen, I am here; thou art my son, thou art !Gaunu-tsaxau; I am the /Kaggen, I whose son thou art; the father is myself.”
Making the child more conscious of his relation to the /Kaggen, more conscious of who he (the child) was.
Bushman father and son with toy bow
And the child sat down, on account of it; and he took out the front kaross, he took out the ||koroko. He put the front kaross on to the child; he put the ||koroko on to the child; he put the front kaross on to the child. Then he took the child with him; they, in this manner, returning went; they returning arrived at home.
Then the young Ichneumon exclaimed: “What person can it be who comes with the /Kaggen?” And |Kuammang-a replied: “Hast thou not just heard that grandfather said he had gone to the baboons, while they were playing at ball there with the child’s eye? While grandfather must have been playing before us; his son comes yonder with him!” And they returned, reaching the house.
The /Kaggen was known to be a trickster. They suspected he had been playing with their minds (expanding consciousness).
Their surprise is also a dramatic device to emphasize the miraculous transformation which brought the son back to life. The renewal of consciousness is not an ordinary development.
Then the young Ichneumon spoke; he said: “Why did my grandfather, the /Kaggen, first say that the baboons were those who killed the child, while the child is here.
Then the /Kaggen said: Hast thou not seen that he is not strong? while he feels that I came to put his eye into the water; while I wished that I might see whether the thing would not accomplish itself for me; therefore, I came to put his eye into the water. He came out of the water; therefore, thou seest that he is not strong. Therefore, I wished that I might wait, taking care of him; that I may see whether he will not become strong.”
The /Kaggen was saying that development of consciousness took time and had to be protected from premature exposure.
The story uses many repetitions to show different aspects of this most difficult and mysterious work, the creation of consciousness.
It is striking that such an elemental material culture was so sophisticated about consciousness but consciousness is more than technology. The bushman were conscious enough to live in their environment without degrading it, which we are not. Perhaps they were more conscious than we.