Lessons in living in kindness.
Author Raja Krishnamoorthy / Kitty - Oct 25, 2013
Why does Parker cling to Meena, whom he knows only for 3 weeks? Half a chance and he is on her lap.
About Parker, before you have wild guesses, look at these pictures!
Parker, is a small, friendly and gentle dog brought up by our son Arvind at his San Francisco home over the last two years. About a week back, late evening as we were watching television, 3 or 4 raccoons in the back yard attacked him. He was mauled quite a bit.
Arvind and Sri Devi (our DIL) took him to a pet hospital immediately, and he was treated till 2.30 am and brought back home. His wavy hair had been trimmed and cut at places to administer the medical treatment required to deal with the wounds on his back, chest, stomach and legs. He was on a recovery mode but was affected by the terrible incident.
Initially he was a little scared, not wanting to go to the back yard alone and was tentative in moving around. Now, he is slowly recovering his confidence, though he is much better physically –thanks to the good vet- in spite of the 14 marks (teeth/claws) he had from the encounter with the raccoons. Over the last few days he has slowly picked up some courage to go to the back yard, the scene of the battle with raccoons.
Arvind is really caring and loving: but he has to administer the medicine too- this is where the dog behaves just like a child: “you may be very loving but when you bring medicines to force into me, I feel like staying away from you! “… Parker is not very keen on the medical attention and avoids them, at least as a feeble, preliminary attempt. Finally he is forced or tricked into consuming the tablets & stuff. Parker is not in his best spirits, though he is thankful. And then Arvind & Sri Devi, leave for work. Poor Parker.
It is a situation that makes him seek a solace of a different kind. He seems to wonder, “Is there any body there for me? Poor me? Now who is the new savior?”
Meena. My wife!
I am awestruck over the last few days that I can see Parker on Meena’s lap at any time, any place that he can seize the opportunity! As I see this scenario getting repeated, I seem to understand the reason.
In spite of Meena’s very recent acquaintance with Parker and her belated acceptance of “dog -as a-friendly animal”, she has become very close to Parker. How? Parker finds her loving and supportive. How does he know that? With a person who was a “dog-scared” till 3 weeks back?
The dog responds to kindness, and UN conditional love- just like children. He seems to say, “nothing else matters, just let me be on your lap, just let me feel the warmth…I feel at home, valued, protected and loved. Let me be with you.”
As I reflect on this unfolding of new relationship, something becomes obvious.
Kindness is not a declaration thru intelligent words: it is the heart reaching out thru gestures, thru sweet- nothing sounds, thru physical actions- touching, stroking, petting and cuddling, thru laughter, thru gibberish chatter and thru unconditional shelter, thru being present unconditionally.
That’s what we do to a little child; with a child – and the child does not know any language – of the adult world, the spoken ones! But the child recognizes love.
The same case with Parker the dog. He does not know any spoken language- certainly not “Palghat Tamizh of Meena”. But he seems to know the language of love & acts of kindness.
Children and pets know when they experience this feeling. Love and kindness cannot be cooked up, cannot be faked, cannot be “performed” and cannot be put on.
If we are pure (un-adulterated, by our own expectations and agenda, if that makes it clearer) and child like – with love (vikalpa- as it is called in Indian languages: without any discrimination) then kindness and love will be FELT.
It can be there, as “pure love”-present in a person, offered by the person, enlivened by the person or it won’t be experienced.
Can we be loving and kind–In the present-all the time? Or Lets say child like; or Parker like; or simply Meena like!
How I wish!
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