On The Immortality of Animals

UnknownIf man’s life is immortal, so also is the animal’s.

The difference is only in degree and not kind. The amoeba and I are the same.

The difference is only in degree and from the standpoint of the highest life, all these differences vanish.

A man may see a great difference between grass and a little tree, but if you mount very high, the grass and the biggest tree will appear the same.

So from the standpoint of the highest ideal, the lowest animal and the highest man are the same.

If you believe there is a God, the animals and the highest creature must be the same.

 

From the highest to the lowest to the most wicked man, in the greatest of human beings and the lowest of crawling worms under our feet, is the soul pure and perfect, infinite and ever-blessed. In the worm, that soul is manifesting only an infinitesimal part of its power and purity, and in the greatest man it is manifesting most of it. The difference consists in the degree of manifestation, but not in the essence. Through all beings exists the same pure and perfect soul.

—Swami Vivekananda

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Writers on Animals

I think I could turn and live with the animals, they are so placid and self contained;
I stand and look at them long and long.
They do not sweat and whine about their condition;
They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins;
They do not make me sick discussing their duty to God;
Not one is dissatisfied-not one is demented with the mania of owning things;
Not one kneels to another, nor his kind that lived thousands of years ago;
Not one is responsible or industrious over the whole earth.”
― Walt Whitman

We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. In a world older and more complete than ours they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings; they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.”

–Henry Besot

I love things made out of animals. It’s just so funny to think of someone saying, “I need a letter opener. I guess I’ll have to kill a deer.
–David Sedaris

Don’t you find it a beautiful clean thought, a world empty of people, just uninterrupted grass, and a hare sitting up?”

―D.H. Lawrence  Women in Love

 

He said that people who loved [animals] to excess were capable of the worst cruelties toward human beings. He said that dogs were not loyal but servile, that cats were opportunists and traitors, that peacocks were heralds of death, that macaws were simply decorative annoyances, that rabbits fomented greed, that monkeys carried the fever of lust, and that roosters were damned because they had been complicit in the three denials of Christ.
―Gabriel Garcia Marquez   Love in the Time of Cholera

When I consider that the nobler animal have been exterminated here – the cougar, the panther, lynx, wolverine, wolf, bear, moose, dear, the beaver, the turkey and so forth and so forth, I cannot but feel as if I lived in a tamed and, as it were, emasculated country… Is it not a maimed and imperfect nature I am conversing with? As if I were to study a tribe of Indians that had lost all it’s warriors…I take infinite pains to know all the phenomena of the spring, for instance, thinking that I have here the entire poem, and then, to my chagrin, I hear that it is but an imperfect copy that I possess and have read, that my ancestors have torn out many of the first leaves and grandest passages, and mutilated it in many places. I should not like to think that some demigod had come before me and picked out some of the best of the stars. I wish to know an entire heaven and an entire earth.Unknown
―Henry David Thoreau  The Journal 1837-1861

Animals never worry about Heaven or Hell. neither do I. maybe that’s why we get along.
― Charles Bukowski   The Last Night of the Earth Poems

Cowspiracy: The Biggest Environmental Disaster Exposed

This is the documentary I’ve been waiting for!!! The biggest reason for deforestation, global warming, water shortages: cows. But even most environmentalists will not talk about this obvious issue.

Tonight’s Los Angeles premiere is sold out, but I am going to the San Diego screening in July.

Click here to find out about upcoming screenings of Cowspiracy.
PLEASE spread the word about this important film!

Day 349 6/19/14: “Ghosts” by Mary Oliver

“Ghosts” is the most eloquent poem I have ever read about vanishing things.  She also gives great dignity to cows–one of those “invisible” animals whose suffering we’d rather not know much about.

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Have you noticed?

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Where so many millions of powerful bawling beasts

lay down on the earth and died

it’s hard to tell now

what’s bone, and what merely

was once.

The golden eagle, for instance,

has a bit of heaviness in him;

moreover the huge barns

seem ready, sometimes, to ramble off

toward deeper grass.

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1805

near the Bitterroot Mountains:

a man named Lewis kneels down

on the prairie watching

a sparrow’s nest cleverly concealed in the wild hyssop

and lined with buffalo hair. The chicks,

not more than a day hatched, lean

quietly into the thick wool as if

content, after all,

to have left the perfect world and fallen,

helpless and blind,

into the flowered fields and the perils

of this one.

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In the book of the earth it is written:

nothing can die.

In the book of the Sioux it is written:

they have gone away into the earth to hide.

Nothing will coax them out again

but the people dancing.

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Said the old-timers:

the tongue

is the sweetest meat

Passengers shooting from train windows

could hardly miss, they were

that many.

Afterward the carcasses

stank unbelievably, and sang with flies, ribboned

with slopes of white fat,

black ropes of blood—hellhunks

in the prairie heat.

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Have you noticed? how the rainimages-10

falls soft as the fall

of moccasins. Have you noticed?

how the immense circles still,

stubbornly, after a hundred years,

mark the grass where the rich droppings

from the roaring bulls

fell to earth as the herd stood

day after day, moon after moon

in their tribal circle, outwaiting

the packed of yellow-eyed wolves that are also

have you noticed? gone now.

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Once only, and then in a dream,

I watched while, secretly

and with the tenderness of any caring woman,

a cow gave birth

to a red calf, tongued him dry and nursed him

in a warm corner

of the clear night

in the fragrant grass

in the wild domains

of the prairie spring, and I asked them

in my dream I knelt down and asked them

to make room for me.

 

Day 342 6/12/14: Tell Groupon to Drop SeaWorld & Ringling Brothers

Please sign this petition to ask Groupon to stop offering deals to the circus and to SeaWorld.

We’re all well-versed in the evils of SeaWorld by now, but in case you didn’t know, this is how Ringling Brothers starts training its elephants. (Baseball bats and lit cigarettes are not pictured)

Now for something uplifting: Click here to see Sunder the elephant in his beautiful new home!

 

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Day 336 6/6/14: Sunder the Elephant: Free At Last

 

It’s always nice to report good news about our animal friends. Back in late March, I wrote about Sunder the elephant who endured years of abuse . Thanks to activists, veterinarians and humane legislators, Sunder is on his way to an elephant sanctuary in India.

 

 

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Day 334 6/4/14: Deep Sea Gossip

Whale painting - after1. The young Florida woman who was attacked by a bull shark had a funny feeling about the dark water. 

2. Find out why artists Marina Abramovic, Ed Ruscha and others have placed their art in a sunken vault at the bottom of the sea.

3. Whale hidden in Dutch landscape painting finally free.

4. Can new technology slow extinction?

5. Ever wondered what it’s like to live underwater for 31 days? Sure you have. And soon you’ll know.

Day 341 6/1/14: Two Weird Orca Stories for a Sunday

This first story is about how orcas around the Farallon Islands up by San Francisco keep the local great white population in check. Nature is brutal, and orcas are smart, dispatching our heroes with “stuns” and “karate chops.”

The second piece is about the World Wildlife Fund’s support for SeaWorld. While I recognize that it’s impossible not to be a hypocrite in this world (To cite one example out of many in my life, I oppose industrialized fishing and factory farming and yet participate in by buying food for my cats), some of these ethical conflicts are really glaring and galling. It’s good for SeaWorld’s image to support the WWF, but how can the WWF fight to protect the vanishing habitat of wild animals with money from an organization that keeps whales in swimming pools? If you’re not too burned out, please sign the petition asking the WWF to end its relationship with SeaWorld. images-4

the_ultimate_forgotten_orca_by_okura-d6srhv3

Day 340 5/31/14: No Limits, No Future

images-3Please sign this petition to ask the European Commission and Regional Fisheries Management to put limits on shark fishing. According to the Shark Trust, three of the world’s top 20 shark fishing nations are European (Spain, France and Portugal). Current laws allow many shark species like short fin mako to be caught in unlimited numbers. Many of these sharks aren’t caught for meat. Trawls, long lining, and gill nets catch huge numbers of sharks as target species and as bycatch. One longliner can deploy up to 200 longlines in one set–lines that contain some 3,000 hooks and stretch for 60 miles. Without placing limits on the numbers of sharks caught, these destructive fishing methods are putting more pressure on animals whose numbers are already falling rapidly. We need to support the adoption of stricter laws for catch limits in Europe to prevent a collapse of Atlantic shark populations.

Thanks for adding your name & sharing this petition!