Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Kindness


"A man walked along a beach covered with thousands of starfish that had washed up during a storm. Now they lay drying in the sun. A little girl was picking the fish up one by one and tossing them into the sea. He said to her "Why bother? There are too many, and you won't make much a difference." She picked up another star and tossed it into the water, turned to the man, and said, "I made a difference to that one."

How often do you personally help strangers? How often do you help a person you have never met before who can do nothing for you... This doesn’t only relate to humans by the way but all living beings. The other day I noticed a ladybird drowning in my bathtub. I saw her struggling against the water, bobbing along into the drain. Part of me wondered if it was too late to do anything but I decided to carry her out anyway, and dried her off by gently blowing on her wings. To some this may have seemed pointless. Why save an insignificant bug, that can never repay you? One that can never say thank you…But to me it wasn’t a stupid act at all. I think part of being human is having compassion for others. We have the ability to see importance in all living things, big and small.  

Every creature on our planet has a purpose. Even the irritating mosquito, who plagues us in our sleep, bites us and gives us malaria has a reason for existence. Malaria probably being the main one. Though hugely controversial and no doubt some will disagree, Malaria is one of many diseases required by nature to keep humans at a reasonable ‘level’, But like smallpox, we have defeated it. Beaten it with out ‘intelligence’. Hence why we are now ‘thriving’.  I would never wish this death on anyone, but I can understand why nature created the little mosquito.

But humans are not the only animal to help others altruistically. I’ve seen and read amazing stories about dolphins protecting surfers from sharks, dogs rescuing their owners from ponds and cows saving people from snakes….amazing acts of genuine kindness. Check this out- http://listverse.com/2010/03/14/top-10-cases-of-animals-saving-humans/ But why do some choose to ignore that. Choose to place animals into a category. The unworthy category. Stupid animals, living under the stars, not knowing what day of the week it is and struggling to survive.

 As mentioned in my previous post, dolphins are incredibly intellectual, and sensitive. I saw a heartbreaking clip yesterday, of Winter, the dolphin who is being showcased to the world in ‘Winters Tale’. Winter lost her tail, and was ‘rescued’ by Clearwater Aquarium, whom I fully believe did have good intentions. Originally. Now she is being exploited as this video shows-


According to the facebook group ‘Save the Blood Dolphins’ Winter had 6400 visitors just this past weekend. For an animal whose first encounter with people would have been when she was rescued from a crab trap, she is now being thrust into the public eye. Yellled at by people who want her to ‘move for them’ and ‘do something’ for their entertainment. This has gone from a rescue mission to cruelty. And I question whether it would have been kinder to put her to sleep then keep her in captivity for ever.

We can make differences. We can help strangers around us, whether it be a little old granny or a tiny ant they still deserve kindness. The little girl picking up the starfish has more knowledge of this world than the elderly man, and he would have seen more than five decades of life than her. Never forget about kindness.

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