Messages From Nature
The Lessons To Be Learned From The Planet, Life And Our Fellow Creatures
Messages From Nature – I’ve been actively involved in learning about animal issues for the last ten years. Before then I was asleep – not intentionally – I just didn’t realize I should be asking questions about the products I bought – the clothing I wore or the food that I consumed.
I look back on my life and understand that I was a well trained, little consumer in the army of uncaring marketing companies, big business and profit driven corporations. I was trained from childhood just as my parents had been by their parents before them. Milk was good for me – wool was warm – down feathers were cozy, meat contained the protein I needed to be healthy – livestock were happy on their farms – the circus was exciting – the zoo was an adventure – bad dogs and cats had to be put to sleep – never question the church and live by the Golden Rule because God loves the good people.
I was eleven years old when I started to say – “some of these things don’t make sense”. I asked our minister – ‘if God is all powerful – why does evil exist’. I was roundly shamed for my impudence.
Time has a funny way of bubbling along and suddenly you realize you’re in the second half of your life. This isn’t good or bad – it’s simply the path we all walk.
Thankfully I started to look at how I lived in the world – what I could do to make a difference and how I might get involved in issues outside of myself – how I might become a better person.
I watched endless hours of videos and documentaries on nature, the planet and animal life. From one day to the next I was heartened by the incredible things that people were doing – angered by human ignorance and cruelty – happy – sad – depressed – tearful – smiling – hopeful and hopeless.
Our Planet is a miracle – earth – air – fire and water – the four elements. The trees, the fields, the mountains, the lakes, rivers and oceans. The changing seasons, rest and renewal, the daily reality of life and death.
I also started to think about the human condition and how the world got to where it is today. We have an incredible planet but we aren’t painting enough pretty landscapes. So I started to look more closely at nature and animals and these are a few things that I know.
Love is the most powerful force in existence. It is in the DNA of nature – animals and humans.
Hatred is learned and then taught by hateful parents to innocent children and hate-filled people to each other. It can be unlearned.
The heart of every living being wants to beat. No creature wants to be exploited and to die, especially unjustly.
Ignorance is a choice. Bullying is a choice. Violence is a choice.
The corruption of power is a choice.
Cruelty and abuse are choices.
Religion is a human construct. It does not come from God. It can be used to soothe and to teach love. Conversely it can be used to perpetuate hatred and violence and as an excuse to justify abhorrent human behaviour. Regardless of your chosen religious path – God does not condone the lust for power – war – greed – violence – hatred – cruelty and killing.
Every living being has a right to its life. It was not put one earth to be violated, tortured, hated, exploited, maimed or killed. Other creatures were not put on earth for us to use.
Beauty is all around us in the miracle of living things. Open your eyes to its magic and mystery. It can soothe a weary soul.
Animals speak to us every day. Sadly most of us are too arrogant to learn their language or listen to their voices. Really look deeply into the eyes of any animal. He or she is looking back at you. Unless it has been terrorized by humans or circumstances – all animals will reach out to try and connect with you.
This dog was killed in a shelter because of human ignorance. The irony of the word “shelter” is lost on no one.
Where was mercy? Where was human compassion?
Look into his eyes – he watched the person killing him.
Do not despair – instead take some time to look around at the plants and trees, the rivers and lakes, the white clouds and the endless blue sky. Feel the warmth of the sun and watch the moon and stars at night. This is our living, breathing Earth.
Water cleanses, refreshes and ensures our survival.
The air we breathe gives us life.
The trees are rooted deeply in the soil and soar to the skies, bending in the strongest winds and giving us shelter.
The rivers, lakes and oceans are home to our magnificent water cousins.
All of these gifts of Nature are ours and we must learn to protect them.
Let the sadness, cruelty and anger that you see every day be teachers. Make a commitment to help in your own way. Everything that you do that is good and kind matters. It doesm’t have to be a grand gesture or a marathon race. Be kind. Speak up when you see something that you know is wrong. Pick a cause that matters to you. Start to question your choices and make changes that you believe are right. Don’t be afraid to offer opinions and question authority (if it is safe to do so). Challenge your politicians. Write letters, sign petitions and go to marches. Meet like-minded people. Find out where you belong in the world and tell others.
It all matters. Good and evil are opposing impulses but love is the most powerful force on earth and in the human heart. Eventually it will win. Make a decision to be part of the growing awareness that is happening all around us. You will never regret being a decent, compassionate person.