‘When a hyena takes over a burrow in an anthill,’ he said, ‘it is his intention that his mind and body be melted down by a sea of termites.’ This was very different to a dead animal being eaten by red ants. It was the morphing of the hyena into an aethereal life force that parasitically attached itself to all members of the termite queendom. After an uncanny gulp of breath he explained further: The termite mind is a collective mind. It thinks as one mind, spreading and sharing its synaptic thought processes between queendoms right across subterranean Africa. Because the hyena had slyly embedded his spirit into this endless termitine mind, their ‘everywhere’ and their consequent awareness of all bush goings-on had become his for his own perverse machinations. By the same intent, he would then coalesce his virtual spirit-being out of the termite world and back into his physical reality: to resurface wherever he felt his presence was needed – or not needed, as in the case of the lion. And with that, the old diviner returned to his tobacco pouch, leaving me to digest his awesome words.
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