What is the Earliest Sign of Civilization?

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What might come to mind first is clay pottery, weapons, grinding stones, or fishhooks. Yet when the anthropologist, Margaret Mead, was asked by a student, “What is the earliest sign of civilization?” her answer was, “A healed femur.”

The longest bone in the body is the femur. It connects the hip to the knee, and takes many weeks to heal. In the animal world, if you break your leg, you die. You aren’t able to hunt, go to your water source, or protect yourself from danger. It is difficult so survive long enough for the injury to heal. In their world, where the code is: “survival of the fittest”, there aren’t healed femurs found.

A healed femur is a sign of care. Someone has set and bound the broken limb and stayed to tend, feed and nurture the wounded. They have been taken to a safe place to rest where they are protected.

The first sign of civilization, is care and compassion.

We are our highest selves when we are serving others.

“Helping someone else through difficulty is where civilization starts,” Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can’t change the world; For, indeed, that’s all who ever have.”

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Throwback Thursday

First published on the 6th day of April, 2020.

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Source: Forbes

©️ Pilgrimage Studio


      1. Jim Borden

        well said. to me, borders are artificial, but I understand the need for them. But if someone wants to move to different country for a better opportunity for them and their family, then I am all for it…

        Liked by 1 person

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