Restricted to the confined spaces of civilised society, urine is typically scorned in public, while its colour, generally a pale yellow, is associated with disease and cowardly behaviour.
In fact, most choose not to talk of this undervalued golden fellow, unless it is the subject of some crude and tasteless joke. However this seems rather unfair, given that urine has contributed so much to Earthly life in times gone by.
In the 17th Century, the father of chemistry, Robert Boyle, recommended patients to drink their own urine to improve health. And if one required a second opinion, Thomas Willis, the richest doctor in England, similarly prescribed women to drink their urine to aid throat infections.
In France, urine was popular in the cleaning of hats, and tanners soaked animal skins in it for the preparation of leather. Soldiers in WWI even used cloth patches soaked in urine as gas masks, as urine neutralised the chlorine in the gas.
This bisque excretory fluid is even sterile upon leaving the body, often making it a far better disinfectant than the available water supply. At least the surgeon of Henry VIII seemed to think so, when he recommended battle wounds to be washed in urine. Aztec physicians did the same thing.
One particularly sought after form of urine comes from the penis of a young boy, as Elizabethan surgeon William Bullein advised the washing of faces with it for a speedy convalescence. Chinese folk medicine also used it as a herbal remedy.
Today, albeit slowly, urine is beginning to reestablish its golden prominence amongst the crowded halls of mainstream society. As Geradien Botte, professor of chemical and molecular engineering at Ohio University, is currently developing hydrogen fuel from urine.
Scottish author Mary Beith wrote recently that urine is especially important in medical skin creams, particularly for babies, while the International Space Station is extracting potable water from urine for consumption.
However, it is the underworld, in the places behind the glossy magazines, capitalist payrolls and image conscious urbanites, where urine is really reaffirming its place as the sacred elixir of old.
Horace Tassellmunger, editor of ‘We’re Not Taking The Piss’, has revealed that in huge biodomes hidden within Eastern Europe, urine is not only worshipped, but recycled in every way imaginable. He says here the open sharing of urine has led to profound forms of human bonding not seen nor heard of since the mythical Golden Age.