Lately more than ever I seem to be reminded of the personal appeal of dinosaurs and the prehistoric setting. Don’t be confused this is not really a massive paleontological obsession, or at least not the kind I might have had as a little boy, but I still find it appealing.
I may sometimes encounter calls to the imagination to direct its attention to a primeval time of reptiles ruling the earth, or more or less the idea of one. Today, dinosaurs bring to mind the idea of primordial chaos, and dragons (we all know what those symbolise to me). To me dinosaurs symbolise much the same things as crocodiles would to me: the untameable primal forces. The cliche prehistoric fantasy also brings to mind the primordial, the reptilian, the animalistic, and primitive, and I guess there’s something about people, dinosaurs, volcanoes, jungles, and badlands in the same place that it’s evocative. You may also have noticed dinosaurs in the background of my depiction of Murugan.
Try not to think this as childish just because it’s prehistoric monsters. Aside from the symbolism, think about it: we tend to gloss over this as kids, but the way dinosaurs lived isn’t so different to the way animals live now. Some plants, and some kill each other, and they’re just as much a symbol of the rough nature of life in the wild just as much as, say, a lion killing a zebra to survive (or a zebra running from a lion).
And by the way, who says they didn’t have anything to do with religion:
I think I will leave it to you to piece together how prehistory fits in with everything else I associate with, since I’d rather not hammer home the point too many times, though I think there are obvious clues. And as I said before, it’s not a massive thing. It’s actually a smaller part of my personal interests that I don’t often explore.