Saturday, March 04, 2006

Why We Need the Furred Species

I am probably one of the most optimistic people I know. This is not to say I don't have my moments of sadness or depression or just plain old disgust with the human species. But on average I tend to see the world in a more positive light.

I still have hope. I still believe that humans are basically good except for those nasty, bad influences and training that neglected the human side of being alive. I believe in altruism and compassion and the power of love. I believe in myself instead of something outside myself.

And the one thing all these beliefs have in common is that they were shaped by my lifelong relationship with dogs, cats, bunnies, anything that could be held and cuddled and loved to abundance. My pets saved me from the dismal realities of life and showed me there was at least something good about living.

It is no accident that so many of us share our lives with a furry bundle of love and amusement. I think that the uglier the world becomes, the more we retreat into this innocent love that doesn't expect us to be anything other than we are. A dog accepts us a member of the tribe, a cat accepts us as a member of the pride.

In the middle of our busy lives and crazy existence, the one constant is our dog or our cat and the pure love we share for each other. This is something we can count on day after day. Our dog will love us even if we are evil and lazy and will never amount to anything. In our dog's eyes, none of that matters. They love us and we love them.

A cat doesn't care what you do with your day. When you come home, you are inseparable realities. The trust of having a purring bundle of fur in your lap erases anything awful that happened during the day. As you pet that vibrating little creature, the bad things in the world melt away and become one soft moment spent with a creature who knows all that matters is love, touch, food, a shared sofa and bed, and maybe a bit of string now and then.

How lonely and empty are those who do not understand this. If only they went to the shelter and adopted a companion, their world would lose some of its ugliness and it would take on moments of sheer beauty. And in the same way that seeds spread their wings upon the wind, so would our love. The world would blossom at last.

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