Monkeys helped man who mysteriously vanished in the Bolivian Amazon


So Pachamama wanted to teach him a lesson, but not kill him. So she sent her forest children, the monkeys, to help him.


Or at least observe it as a cultural experience. But it sounds like his own superstitious beliefs got in the way.


Anybody remember the scene in The Emerald Forest where the industrialist dad was being carried through the rainforest on a litter, hallucinating that he was a stalking panther?

Please tell me I remember it correctly, because yes, I was tripping balls the one and only time I watched it.


Maybe they just need to get rid of that monkey on their back.


You tryin’ to ape me?


I thought I different interpretation might be (b)a boon to the conversation.


They were non-union monkeys and didn’t want to be called out as scabs


I’ve interacted with monkeys in Ecuador, and it’s more of a “they’re really into whatever they’re into” sort of thing.

If they like you, you’re their best bud ever. If you piss them off, expect weird monkey vengeance to happen at some point. And the things you think are important or nothing at all aren’t the same things that a monkey thinks…


I get the sneaky feeling that you’ve just offended Pachamama (don’t expect monkey help!).


In Malaysia a few years ago I parked my car close to where a monkey had clearly been killed by a car. The dead animal was surrounded by other monkeys, clearly in distress. As I got out of my car they surrounded me. It was a threatening situation to be in.

Its not hard to believe that animals which were sensitive to one of their number being killed by one of mine could also be sensitive to one of mine being in danger.


Monkeys are frequently associated with Jungle Madness.


I’m thinking maybe he found monkeys that were picky about how ripe fruit is and dropped whatever wasn’t perfect.


You’re assuming Pachamama is perceived as the Abrahamic God is perceived. I don’t know about that ceremony and religion in particular, but in a lot of belief systems the forest, fruit, monkeys, and water would all be manifestations of Pachamama, and therefore quite tangible.

That is, closer to pantheism, which is often only different from atheism in attitude.

If you’re going to sling mud, be sure to check the target first, lest you discover you were in front of the bullseye all along.


Most indigenous South American religious traditions could more accurately be called animist than pantheist (or panentheist), but yea, a lot closer to that than an Abrahamic religion.

I disagree with it being close to atheism, though. It’s kind of the opposite, where everything is charged with intent and consciousness.


No, I’m assuming the guide was saying that the man offended an ancient supernatural entity, because that’s what he said. Pachamama is an earth and fertility goddess, with all the religious trappings (including artistic depictions of said supernatural entity as a woman, a role in a mythos, priests, sacrifice ceremonies, etc.). It’s not pantheism (which, by the way, also assumes the presence of a supernatural entity which atheism would reject) or animism.

The only relevance of Abrahamic religion to this discussion is that you probably wouldn’t have responded to me at all (or might have agreed) if the guide had been Catholic and said the tourist got lost because he didn’t take Communion at their church service and offended God.


You’re assuming how the supernatural entity is perceived and using an Abrahamist framework. In your response, you’re still doing that.

And no, not all pantheism assumes a supernatural entity. Like I said before, it’s the way of looking at things that distinguishes it. See Ietism, among others.


Not at all. As I said, an Abrahamist framework is beside the point* in a discussion of more general religious structures like gods and demi-gods, ceremonial sacrifices to them, etc. that transcend and predate Abrahamic religions.

It’s kind of you to try to shoehorn this goddess into a more New-Age and less anthropomorphised version of pantheism. However, that’s not what the guide was discussing in this context, what with his talk of Pachamama’s vengeance when the tourist did not sacrifice cigarettes and such to her at the ceremony.

[* well almost: after the colonial conquests by Spain forced conversions to the RCC had some indigenous peoples unite Pachamama with the Virgin Mary. This guide, though, may be old-school and worship the older and often more “cruel goddess eager to collect her sacrifices”]

That aside, I just find it sad that, in a time where science and technology have revealed palpable wonders and provoked new and sometimes existential questions to be explored, many people still feel the need* to gild the lily with supernatural woo.

[* sometimes understandably: religion thrives wherever there is poverty, ignorance, and desparation]


You’re right, and duende would be something like an elf, but culturally “duendes” are “enanos” but an “enano” is not necessarily a “duende”.


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