It only takes a moment to feel. Just drop inside your body, and from there, perceive. This cuts through the clutter and diversion of mind chatter and justifications, and for just those few moments, you can perceive what is without much of a filter.
What if everyone practiced this heart-based seeing to a greater or lesser extent? Probably the world—and our treatment of people and animals—would be much kinder.
Here’s one example. The man waited in line at his favorite lunch stand on a busy city street in Philadelphia. He noticed the stray dog, again. He’d seen him on other days but hadn’t given the dog much thought beyond: oh well, survival of the fittest. The rumpled-looking dog sidled up to the lunch cart, sniffing the fragrant food and looking up at the people in line, hopeful. Like all the other passersby and people in line, the man ignored the dog. It’s easier not to pay heed.
On this particular day, however, the man looked into the eyes of this creature and recognized something. He broke off a corner of his sandwich and held it out for the dog, who took it gingerly from his hand. Then he pulled out his cell phone, called directory service, and dialed the number of the local humane society.
The man sat on a nearby bench, the dog following a few respectful steps behind. He held out another piece of his sandwich to the dog, who swallowed it without chewing then looked up at the man, expectantly. Over the next half-hour the man gave the dog the rest of his sandwich in small pieces while checking his phone for the time and peering up and down the street. Finally, a small white truck pulled up and parked, and a uniformed woman climbed out. She glanced at the man, nodded to him, then crouched down and extended a treat to the dog. As the dog took the food, the woman spoke softly to him and slipped a leash over his head. The dog sat down at her side and looked up at her as if to say, what’s next? The woman asked the man if he’d seen the dog there before, and thanked him for caring enough to make the phone call. She opened the back of the truck, and the dog jumped in, happily. Off they drove.
The man bought another sandwich, this one for himself, and as he walked away, chewing thoughtfully, he felt good.
To find the phone number of your local shelter, add in your zipcode: http://theshelterpetproject.org/shelters
Brown stray dog courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net – tiverylucky.