Myth 207 - Monkeys scattered when the big tree falls

Many have quoted this phrase as a truism, that all the monkeys in a big tree will scamper and scatter once the tree has fallen. No more branches to hang on to. Better to look for another big tree. Better still, be their own big tree. In such a scenario there will be many big trees contending for more monkeys to hang on to their branches. Will this be the case all the time? I think it will be, without exceptions. Big tree falls, means big tree no more. A replacement tree growing beneath may become another big tree, but will take some time to grow in stature. Another possibility is instant Angsana tree being used to replace the old tree. But instant trees have short roots and may not stand the gust of strong winds or a heavy downpour. And Angsanas are never know to be strong, like the old oak tree or the tembusu. Would this saying be as true as it was or would it just be a myth?


Wally Buffet said...

One would really be a stupid monkey if when the big tree falls and it is still holding on to the branches!

Next to Homo Sapiens, monkeys are the most intelligent. So next time when you pass by the botanical gardens and you see monkeys scattering from a tree, it would be wise for you not to drive or walk underneath it too!

Anonymous said...

Nowaday, who need big tree. We created virtual trees and phantom trees. Nothing to uproot.

Matilah_Singapura said...

The ting about truisms and metaphors is that they do not exist in reality — they are simply "representations" used to convey some idea. It is dangerous and error-prone to try to analyse the world through slogans, "commonly accepted" sayings etc.

All hypothetical situations are essentially "forced illusions". Apply the required grain of salt — to use a common metaphor :)

faithful said...

big tree seldom falls unless there is a big crack inside the system.. like losing billions of dollars.. and yet allowing loop-holes & deadwoods to continue to reside in the system... or allowing foreign agents to infest the system bringing social ills.. soon the big tree will fall naturally.

redbean said...

hi faithful, welcome to the blog. i like your moniker.

in nature, everything must come to past. all trees must fall, one day. this is an inescapable truth.