I stopped reading science fiction as a sophomore in college, so I hardly read much of what Dick wrote, but it got me to thinking about science fiction in general.
I remember being strangely affected by Philip Jose Farmer's short story called "Prometheus", first published in 1961, but republished in a 1971 collection of short stories called "Down In The Black Gang":
Prometheus is set in the 23rd Century and relates the misadventures of one John Carmody, a monk of the order of St. Jairus. Attacked by hoodlums in a zoo on Earth, Carmody has the misfortune to fall into the enclosure housing a horowitz - a giant bird from the planet Feral - which holds him down with one foot and proceeds to lay an egg on his chest! Carmody manages to escape from the closure, but discovers that the egg has put out tendrils and attached itself permanently to his chest!As a blogger, I sometimes feel like the hapless conman-turned-monk John Carmody, forced by accident to bear heavy burdens and destined to discover rather late in life his true calling: preaching to the Galaxy's most intelligent nonsentient beings. I can relate.
Carmody's plight becomes a golden opportunity for zoologists, who believe the horowitzes to be the Galaxy's most intelligent nonsentient beings. Not only can they now study the embryo's development in the egg, but they also convince the hapless monk to go to Feral and impersonate a horowitz to help gather scientific data.