We are animals

I just saw this article and it broke my heart. But it has also baffled me and brought me a massive whack of connection with the natural, animal, world. Seeing this Orangutan injured – in the photo below – and so clearly in pain and terrified, breaks. my. heart. beyond words. I want to reach into the photograph and stop its suffering. And the fact I can’t, leaves me feeling helpless.

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But when I see how it’s lying, I realise that that’s how I lie when I’m crying in therapy. I lie on my side at the moment (because of my back being sore) and when I cry, I cover my face with my arms up, exactly like this animal. And I cry like that by myself too. It makes me feel safe. It makes me feel like I’m protected when I’m feeling big feelings, or feeling scared. Realising, and seeing, this, blew me away.

It’s overwhelming beautiful but overwhelming tragic, as I look at the photograph and see this animal doing it too. Because we’re the same. Us humans, the animals, the earth.

I feel blown away by how we’re all so connected. We’re humans but we’re animals. And that’s why cruelty like this is just even more wrong. It would be wrong if we weren’t animals, but we are and by doing this to them, we are doing it to ourselves. By hurting animals, we are hurting ourselves. And by hurting the earth, we are hurting ourselves too.

I feel livid and full of sorrow. But I also feel grateful for people being able to show these things on the media, otherwise we would never know it goes on. And I know that there is a shed load more shit we don’t see, but know is there.

I had no idea the palm oil production was so destructive, and for that I feel ashamed. And I also feel a deep, deep, concern because the destruction keeps happening. It’s in these moments I am grateful I eat a Paleo style diet, because I don’t eat products pre-made. Not that I did before this anyway, or rarely have I ever in my life. It may sound hypercritical because I’m still eating meat, but health-wise I have decided I need it – and I really do. And my sources are organic – and when I can, local. I have made peace with this, almost. I can’t shed all the guilt but I have learnt to shed a lot of it.

We need more photographs like this, because photographs like this open up a place inside ourselves that makes us feel connected. And by feeling connected, we can feel love. And by feeling love towards something or sometime, we naturally want to protect it. We protect those we love.

Get your shit together Palm Oil producers, this is far from okay.

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6 thoughts on “We are animals

  1. The earth is very low on fresh water. For every pound of beef you eat 1600 gallons of fresh water are used to produce it. We found giving up the beef and replacing it with hemp protein allowed us to save a lot of money. I grew up in a meat family. I know what its like. What a great way to show there are no differences between us and them. So why would we even want to eat one creature like us? Oh meat workers often cut themselves in the factories and bleed into the meat. They cant afford to lose their jobs if they report a cut can they?
    Watch Food Inc!!!

    • I have a body that needs meat and I have learnt to allow myself that for now. It breaks my heart and I wish I didn’t but my health really really needs it. It might not be forever, but it’s what I need now. I believe that in order to be able to look after the earth and the animals and the people on it, we need to look after ourselves and be well. I believe the earth would want that too. It’s something I’ve learnt to know I need.

      • I used to think that as well. My body processes proteins quickly. Hemp contains more protein then beef. Try doing a Google search on the benefits of hemp protein powder organic! I hope it helps and you can find this at walmart!

  2. Thanks for sharing this. I just wish we could always feel connected to the more-than-human world, without needing to have our hearts jolted open with shocking images like this. But for now it seems this is where we are. The difficult work lies ahead of us, as we fumble around trying to find ways to live in reverence and appreciation of our world. We must create practices that keep us in that open, loving place you speak of all the time.

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