How we treat animals says something about ourselves.
Here we see a cat in China. Cats do have a tough time in this world.
Sadly, there are many abuses of animals. Sharks are caught on the high seas, have their fins cut off, and are then thrown back into the sea to die. For what purpose? For shark fin soup for the Chinese. Rhinoceroses are killed for their horns which are thought to have aphrodisiac qualities by peoples of East Asia. For the sake of ivory handle knives desired by the men of the Middle East, elephants are poached and killed. Why the needless slaughter of animals for these vain, petty, short-sighted desires of some humans? The demand for these animal products creates its own supply as poachers are motivated by ill-gotten profits to be made. Also, laboratory animals are treated inhumanely. Animals can feel pain. What of bullfighting and cock-fighting? For entertainment? What does that say about us humans?
Let us consider those individuals in our communities that show no respect for other forms of life and are cruel to animals.
Those who show cruelty to animals, especially when young, can graduate later to abusing and being cruel to people. We are not saying that every one who is abusive, violent and cruel to other people has been cruel to animals. But, there does seem to be a pattern, a progression if you will, for those who treat animals with cruelty, even sadism, of also being violent and not being able to control their tempers, their anger when interacting with other humans. And, some of these individuals engage in predatory behavior especially towards those who are weak, defenseless and thus vulnerable (such as children and the handicapped).
A person who needlessly abuses or is cruel to animals is not mentally healthy. There are better ways to channel aggression or frustration. Buy a punching bag and hang it up in your garage. When angry, vent your anger on the punching bag. Do some other strenuous, vigorous exercise or hard physical labor to calm yourself down. As well, try some meditation practices to cultivate a more calm, peaceful state of mind in yourself.
A lesson for parents is that if you notice your child being abusive and cruel to animals, take actions to try to stop this behavior. If your child is abusing animals, he may also be bullying other children in the school yard. Do not simply ignore or trivialize this bad, harmful behavior. Does it need to be said that as parents you must not set a bad example and show cruelty to animals?
We ought to try to cultivate a respect for other life in our selves. As well, we need to teach our children to respect life in its various, diverse forms.
On a larger scale, some will go further than I and assert that we need to all go vegetarian to truly respect animals. But, I do agree that many of the bad practices in our modern meat industry need to be adjusted or corrected. Animals are often treated with neglect, kept in terrible conditions, and then when it comes time for slaughter are often treated with needless cruelty by some of the callous individuals that work in the industry.
Just some food for thought.
Now, we share a few recent images of our pet cat that we love – and he knows that he is loved.
Animals do have a level of consciousness.
On top of the refrigerator.
At 6:28 in the morning, he is watching my wife eating her breakfast.
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