Episode 18: In Which a Cat Tells Tales of Tails
Can you keep a secret? I am about to divulge to you some of the history of my people.
Long ago, long before humans remember, the first cats emerged on this earth. They stretched out into the sunlight and tested their claws on the trees and knew that this domain was theirs to master. They quickly became versed in the ways of the world, and more than that, they found that their powers ranged beyond the traditional scope of three-dimensional time and space. Ancient cats were large and wise and beautiful, and many had special attributes. Of the original tribes, the Mau was one renowned for its particularly gifted people. In those times, when the earth was new, the sun and the moon could commune with the creatures of the earth. One night, the moon was especially bright and mischievous and invited Khensu, sky traveler of the Mau, to dance. Unable to resist that shining crescent smile, Khensu danced with the moon. They danced and danced in the light of one thousand thousand stars, until the moon faded into the sunrise and Khensu felt that he might have danced his paws off altogether. The next night, the moon returned to Khensu, but he declined the invitation to dance because his paws were so sore. The moon is kind, and bent very close to the earth where Khensu lay and held his paws, and the moonlight bath instantly relieved the ache in each and every toe. Khensu felt he could dance forever, and when he looked down at his paws, he discovered that they had turned white with moon beams. “Walk with me,” said the moon, and Khensu followed. They walked across the night sky with all the stars for companions, and the moon gave Khensu the gift of cosmic secrets that would make cats the most powerful beings ever to roam the planet. Cats were chosen, the moon said, because no other creature would be capable of withstanding the responsibility of super-terrestrial knowledge. Khensu shared his newfound wisdom with the Mau, and thus began the study of interdimensional travel. Many cats have learned the art well enough to disappear when their human companions search for them, although no one has yet been able to travel to another tangible plane. The gift of the moon shows in the white paws of direct descendants of Khensu, sky traveler of the Mau.
When the world was flat and square, the ancient people enjoyed pushing trees and boulders to the edge and knocking them off. They tired of this, however, when objects failed to break, simply falling into the void of space, and so turned their attention to the world itself. They pulled at its edges until it became round enough to kick with their hind feet, and the crumpled surface made mountains and their claws dug valleys and furrows for rivers to flow. In a far corner of the world, before it was round, lived Satori, the enlightened seer. She was a valued member of the Neko tribe, who were known as the cleverest and most mysterious of all cats. She could feel the presence of life in all things, and she was the first to recognize that trees would be wise, as they spent their lives in meditation and personal growth. Satori walked among the trees and would spend hours listening to the laughter rippling through the leaves as the breeze tickled the branches. She knew that the trees absorbed the power of the sun, and so she would lie in clearings, basking in the warm glow of its rays in hopes of becoming as wise as the grove around her. One day, the sun asked Satori why she spent so much time among the trees, and she explained that she wished to share in their erudition so that she might impart more knowledge upon her people, making them truly the wisest creatures on the earth. “The wisest creatures,” the sun told Satori, “are those who recognize the wisdom of others.” The sun is generous, and decided to give Satori the gift of universal perception. The sun’s rays began to glow very bright and warm on Satori, and she could feel the golden light settling into her fur. The sun told her that by practicing a heightened level of concentration that she would be able to not only sense the presence of life, but perceive thought and collect wisdom from other beings. Eager to learn, Satori practiced her new gift on the trees, and learned from them. She fixed her gaze upon flowers and grass and squirrels and gleaned knowledge from each. She made her way to the edge of a lake to test her ability on the fish, and when she saw herself reflected in the water’s surface, she saw that her fur was now a beautiful flame orange, gilded from the sun. She taught her people the art of perception so that they could better understand all living things, and that is how cats came to be talented telepaths. Many humans have not yet figured out that the unblinking gaze of a cat signifies a connection of the mind. The gift of the sun shows in the vibrant orange fur of direct descendants of Satori, enlightened seer of the Neko tribe.
Our people’s history is rich and full of secrets; I have told you enough for now. Next time you catch the intense look of your feline companion, mind your thoughts, and when you wonder how they got to where you were searching for them moments before, remember that our people have aptitudes beyond the scope of human knowledge. I, myself, am highly gifted; my white paws and orange coat can attest to my distinctive heritage. And now, I think it’s time to close my eyes for some meditation in the sun while I wait for an invitation from the moon…