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Sobering Thoughts about an Unfortunate Reality
A Taste of Bitter Truth
Once again I have that old, familiar feeling of dread. A feeling of helplessness, hopelessness and the belief that I an not able to make things “better.“ At these times, I see the glass as half empty, the burden almost too difficult to bear, the situation untenable.
I’ve often wondered if I am afflicted with a tendency towards depression. These moods and feelings are ignited by the smallest stimulus. Other times, I can identify the reason and cause which sends me teetering on the edge of fear. Fear of the “what if’s,” fear of being ‘left behind,’ fear that I cannot successfully continue to help those in need; those for whom I have worked tirelessly to provide safety, security and love.
I once had my life “all together.” For years, I built my world to meet my needs. This took discipline, perseverance and the understanding that I must forfeit, do without now in order to have the peace and freedom I sought.
All bills were paid on time, all needs were met and I enjoyed the freedom of my own space, my own schedule and my chosen pursuits. There was always ample time and resources to meet any unexpected event and fulfill most of the interests and dreams I wished to explore. I had reached a comfort zone; one which had been carefully developed over time. Those were the ‘good ole days.’ The days of personal exploration as well as personal indulgence.
I look back and wish I did not know now what I didn’t know then; I pray for “ignorant bliss.”
But, sadly, I shall never have that luxury again. Because now, and for many years past and forever in the future, I have learned some sad and heinous truths about this life; this world and my own kind.
When I turned 40 I thought; “ah…now I can relax a little. I’ve met many of my goals, proven to myself that I am capable; I have constructed a secure future for myself and my loved ones. I no longer want to be forever young…no, now, I can ‘give myself a break’ and enjoy life without feeling that I must ‘climb the highest mountain, reach the furthest goal.’ Yes, now that I have done many of those things I’d hoped to do, I can let myself be.”
Well, was I ever mistaken! Right around that time, I learned of something which has become life altering, leaving me with an ever present feeling that I must act…always act in ways to stop the madness.
I am talking about the plight of animals on this earth at the hands of my own kind; human beings. On every level, every second of every day, week by week, months on end and countless years, animals are taking the brunt of our endless pursuit of our idea of perfection whether it is medical, cosmetic, dietary, “entertainment,” a “learning experience,” hunting skills, curiosity, and more. We have come to see animals as tools, as expendable, as sources of experimentation because of their ’difference,’ as tasty cuts of meat, and so on. Whatever our pursuit; whatever our interest, our imagined learning device, whatever “need” we think can be filled using a living, sentient individual; we do so without regard for their sensitivities; their needs, their right to life.
So, I spend most of my time trying to figure out how to “fix it.” How to end the massive, unimaginable amount of suffering animals are experiencing ALL THE TIME in the name of science, vanity, gluttony, thrills and any human wish to be filled …. Filled by making the life of another living being unbearable or by ending; by the intentional taking of life.
How has it come to this? I have pondered this for years; for decades, now. How can we be so brutal; so cruel and so unfeeling? What happened to our kind that allows us to participate; either directly or indirectly, in the subjugation of living beings merely for our tastes, our convenience, our amusement, selfishness, greed and ego?
Sometimes, I hate mankind. I have a living, bubbling cauldron of disdain boiling inside me for the human race. Those who perpetrate the crimes against animals and those who consciously look the other way to protect themselves from this ugly truth. To me, they are as much to blame as are those who are directly involved in this accepted sickness.
I sincerely do not feel that the human race is superior to other sentient creatures. I truly do not. If I break a “rule;” one which I’ve set for myself because I know, intrinsically, that it is right; I do not defend my transgression; I admit to it and apologize. I am fallible.
Do you know how many of us feel we are not at fault? That there is no need to consider our acts; that perhaps we, too, are fallible? That our role on this planet is to be “king?” The human ego is without equal. Not only do we possess intelligence; we color that with arrogance and a belief that it is our right to behave as we do. To tread upon the earth and its inhabitants as though so much trash.
We stomp our way through this life; most of us, with a feeling of entitlement.
I know this is harsh and probably seems heavily one sided but, if you have grown to love, and find value in something which the vast majority of your fellow humans feel is less than worthless then, one tends to become bewildered, disappointed, disgusted and angry. Because, in this case, I will never live to see the end of animal abuse, torture, neglect in my lifetime. I know this is a long time coming; I’ll never see the end of it.
Unlike our infamous Public Servant, I really do feel their pain.
Imagine, if you can, applying all that is written here to your child. Or any child. Could you handle it if that child, or other children were treated thusly? Could you stand by, turn your eyes away and continue on as if nothing happened? Could we ignore another holocaust? We do, you know. Every day. It’s just that the victims, now, are animals, not humans. And we have allowed ourselves to simply accept; to easily assume that it is our right because they are “less than.” Living, feeling beings are treated as things … things that we have the right to do to whatever we please.
So, I am sad. I am sickened and I am bewildered. This is what I live with, day in and day out. Trying to “wrap my head around” this reality. My sensitivities will not allow me to accept it because I KNOW it is not right. I sincerely believe that, should the human race continue on long enough, these times will be looked upon as barbaric. We, right now, will be seen as savages; ignorant savages whose only pursuit in life was to survive at whatever cost. Our behavior is still on this level. We allow our urges and gross instincts to rule our acts rather than our intellect. If we allowed our intelligence to dictate our activities, we’d never behave as we do now but, sadly, we’ve ‘chosen’ to be guided by our ‘lower’ selves.
The intensity of these feelings waxes and wanes depending upon my own personal moods and the information which flows to me daily via the internet, friends, email, television, etc. Some days, I can walk this earth feeling fine; being swept up with the beauty around me. Other days, not so fine. Today, not fine, at all. So, as with so many times, I’ve chosen to write these words to ease a bit of the intensity which I am feeling; to use this tool as a catharsis.
To those of you who are reading this and understand my words; bless you. To others who might not have considered these things; perhaps you will take a moment and rethink the possible. If we all cared; if it mattered to more of us; we could instigate change more readily; make life better for others and feel a whole lot better, ourselves.
Come on…what do you say?