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This is a short story, based on a real scientific experiment.


Submitted:Jul 17, 2012    Reads: 89    Comments: 0    Likes: 1   


Once upon a time. There were five monkeys. These five monkeys had a challenge set for them. While in captivity their captors kept them in a cage, a rather large cage, large enough to hold a ladder with bananas at the top, at least five monkeys to observe the ladder, and the bananas at the top of it as well. What does this have to do with anything you might be asking yourself? Actually quite a lot. You see, a simple psychological test conducted many decades ago, revealed that under these circumstances a lot could be learned about mankind.
Is it really human nature that makes us all seem to despise one another? Phrases like, the path to hell was paved with good intentions, comes to mind. Why is it that we all seem to subconsciously want to see each other fail? I understand this could be thought of as a negative thinking. But please allow me to break this down for you, if only on a small scale. My entire life, I've been told two things about myself. One thing that I've been told, is that I'm a very negative person. The other thing I've been told, is that I have a great sense of humor. In this short story I wanted to explain the irony of these two concepts.
The two concepts I speak of, break down into two subcategories listed in the two paragraphs above. The first category has to do with our ability to understand, and comprehend our actions from an advanced psychological standpoint. The second category more or less allows the reader to reflect upon the second paragraph, as if an outsider looking in with a great bit of irony. It is my hope to enlighten you, but if I can get you to laugh? I don't think I can ask for better enlightenment than that.
Getting back to the first paragraph & the five monkeys. I found this psychological test to be quite humorous and also terribly ironic. Whoever thought to observe five monkeys in the state such as that laid out in this true story. They must've been some sort of genius, or some sort of sadist. I will leave that up for you to decide. Five monkeys placed in a rather large cage with themselves, a ladder, and a bushel of bananas at the top of the ladder. Who could've thought that any social logical revelation could have occurred? I do not think I will ever forget the metaphor, that I myself walked away in awareness of from the following story.
Five monkeys find themselves all alone in an enclosure, only to notice wonderful food at the top of a strange climbing device, better known to you and I, as a ladder. Excited about the circumstances, one of the monkeys heads up ladder to have himself a meal. No sooner than the monkey could grab a banana and start to eat it, with the rest of the monkeys on the ground looking up at the monkey eating. They were all drenched with a rather large amount of water, as if to come out of a fire hose. This enraged the monkeys, and they did not hesitate to beat the living hell out of the monkey, who got to enjoy the free treat. This went on and on. The same group of monkeys, the same equation. One goes up the ladder & the rest pull him/her back down only to give that monkey a savage beating.
Here's where I thought the story got very interesting. In order to find out if this behavioral pattern would continue, the fine scientist who decided to conduct this experiment. Well they decided to bring in more monkeys, and remove the existing monkeys, but not all of the monkeys. They left a few in there, in order to see if the same behavior would occur. Just as if the new monkeys had been doused with the water that the very first monkeys had been doused with. They all behaved exactly the same toward any monkey who would climb the ladder. What does this teach us? It teaches us that behavioral patterns in primates are very similar to that of our own.
I have yet to meet a fellow human companion or friend. That did not become instantly envious when they found out, somebody else came into money or some sort of inheritance, or any other thing that made anyone envious. Of course this cold and bitter little fact of life is a contradiction to the status quo. It does not take a very intelligent person to understand just how quickly people in a civilized country, will not question the status quo, or the fact that we all blindly follow each other, and we do not question where we all might be going. I hope you enjoyed my short, story based on the fact.




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