“A human being is a part of the whole that we call: The Universe. A part that is limited in time and space. This human being experiments with himself, with his thoughts and emotions as if he were separate from the rest of mankind and nature, a sort of optical illusion of the conscience. This illusion becomes a sort of prison for us, limiting us to our personal desires and to the affection of the people close to us. Our task must be to liberate ourselves from this prison by enlarging our circle of compassion and thus embrace all living creatures and all of nature in its beauty.” Letter written by Einstein in 1950.
Here are two beautiful stories for Christmas and the New Year. There is no need of words or lessons; animals show us the way to follow.
HERE IS BECKY’S STORY
I thank the person who transmitted this story to me.
“As I do nearly every Saturday, I took Becky out for a walk with a pack of dogs. She knows most of them by now and even ventured to mix with them, but did not participate in their games.
A little later, a woman joined us with a big, blind dog. Oddly enough, Beck was not afraid of him; on the contrary, as soon as the blind dog moved too far away, Becky went to bring him back into the pack. During the whole outing, she watched over this dog as if she were aware of his handicap. I am not trying to attribute human characteristics of compassion and empathy to her, but her attitude did seem to resemble them. Do dogs possess these capacities? I now think that they do. All the people participating in this outing were very affected by my little dog’s behavior.”
THE STORY OF FLAMBEUR
“Flambeur came into my life 21 years ago. 21 years of complicity, laughter, emotions, tears… Life in other words! The sarcoids were part of his daily life from the age of 8 and until his departure at the age of 24. He lived in the field with three other horses and during the last days before his departure, he was isolated: the other horses left him alone in his corner.
I was fortunate enough to be able to accompany him until the end, to be present. During the last hour of his life, he was lying with his head in my arms. He was very attached to a mare of that herd called Action. I knew that the end was near and I mentally begged Action to come near him in his last moments. As if in response to my demands, she approached us, placed her nostrils and her warm breath over his head and I felt that this helped him. He started to breathe more calmly.
Action then left with the others and Flambeur departed serenely from this world. I moved away heart broken. I left the meadow and turned around one last time. What I saw both upset and moved me deeply: the three other horses had placed themselves in a circle around Flambeau’s body. They stayed there, immobile, heads bowed, around him. This lasted about 45 minutes. It was as if they were paying hommage, or giving a last good-bye, I don’t know…
But what a beautiful gift that was to have been present at that timeless moment. My tears were flowing. Sadness, solace and different emotions were all intermingled. What a lovely lesson from life!
President of Peace for Horses