Mid Week Muse: Mermaids, Selkies and things from the deep

Click for Animal Planet’s  Mermaids: The Body Found

Mermaids. That’s what started my mid week inspiration. Especially this haunting face, I can’t look for too long for fear of the eyes moving! Since watching Animal Planet’s ‘Mermaids: The Body Found’ this person of watery origins has been haunting me. The film with their ‘evidence’ of a found ‘person of aquatic origin’  was slated as a mock-u-mentary but somewhere wrapped up in there is a question of what’s wrong with this theory of humans having aquatic origins? Why the backlash?

Although my interest is in the inspiration there is a lot of evidence for our watery origins from Welsh Feminist Elaine Morgan. Morgan took on the early male anthropologists who suggested that women’s role in evolution was merely passive as it was those strong brave hunters who went out and risked their lives while honing our senses and driving humanity forwards. Echoes here of a time’s arrow of linear advancement vs a cyclical ebb and flow.

Morgan’s basis for an aquatic ancestor are compelling which could account for our hairless bodies, our conscious ability to hold our breath underwater and the reason for our blubbery fat layer amongst others ….. But there’s something niggling me here, of dark oceans with unfathomable depths much like our own consciousness hiding our shadowy monsters. The emotional tides of the pull of the moon upon us beings who are more than half water. The ocean hides so many secrets and yet evolution played out on the savannah seems so much more clean cut, illuminated by the hot blazing sun, much favored by traditional male anthropologists.

I was about to write ‘well I’m no Scientist’ but I do have a Masters Degree in the Science of Human Ecology and somehow an aquatic ancestor speaks to me in the feminine and maybe in recognizing such a journey we devalue the male role and the sexes becomes more equal. For at this point in our history we as women are still not equal. Women remain second hand citizens in this world, as does the land itself and all our non human relatives (including the apes – aquatic or not).

Watch Animal Planet’s film, listen to Elaine Morgan’s Ted speech, check out the Aquatic Ape Hypothesis website and there’s a few links to mermaid myths (any by myth I mean folk stories) from around the world – and of course my favorites…the Selkies!

Welsh Feminist, Scientist & author Elaine Morgan

Click on either photo above for Elaine Morgan’s TED speech ‘Did We Evolve From Aquatic Apes?”

Legend of the Mermaids of the Karoo, South Africa – Click on picture for blog story

The beautifully inspiring legends of the Celtic Selkies

And purely as inspiration…Selkie folk films:

Click on picture to watch on YouTube

Ondine – Click for Trailer

A Shine of Rainbows. Great scenery and brilliant soundtrack by the O’Henry Girls





4 thoughts on “Mid Week Muse: Mermaids, Selkies and things from the deep

  1. hello. I`m from Orkney so this article is fascinating to me. Why not evolve from sea people. The legends of the Finn Folk tell us that they were first before the humans. Love the article thank you.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.