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  • Writer's pictureCoco

Coco Calling No.282 - When The Tables Are Turned



My owner has been working away feverishly on his vegetable patch. And he takes particular care of his brassicas because they are a magnet for the local caterpillars, pigeons, pheasants and rabbits. So, to offer them protection, he first covers the soil with a weed suppressing fabric, and then erects butterfly netting over the top to keep all of the pests at bay. He tries to work with Nature rather than against it and achieves success by simply outwitting the different pests. He even keeps aphids at bay by planting French Marigolds amongst his precious brassicas.


This can be quite a lengthy business; in fact, the other day, he spent the best part of two hours bent double under the netting, with the sun beating down on him, as he planted up the patch. And one of our garden chickens just couldn’t make it out because she was free ranging while this human was suddenly confined to ‘an enclosure.’ Yes, Hazel just stood there right next to the netting, quietly clucking away to herself. And my owner was sure that she was saying:                                             

‘This is no way to keep a human. This is battery farming at its very worst!’


So, the tables were suddenly turned. And sometimes, it’s only when we personally experience the plight of others firsthand that we can learn true compassion and understanding. Humans can be very critical of one another; they often make sweeping judgements about folk with mental health problems, or about single mothers or refugees or others claiming benefits when they have no real understanding of what it’s like to be in any one of these situations. They can become entrenched and prejudiced through the confines of their own ignorance. And it’s this same ignorance that can also make them turn a blind eye to animal cruelty. There are times when we all need to put ourselves in the position of others to learn compassion and understanding. This is perhaps, one of the most important lessons for us to learn during our lifetimes, because both compassion and understanding provide the bedrock to love.


“The purpose of human life is to serve and to show compassion and the will to help others.”                             

(Albert Schweitzer: [1875-1965]: French theologian, organist, writer, humanitarian, philosopher and physician. He was also a Lutheran Minister and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1952)


“Until he extends his circle of compassion to all living things, man will not himself find peace."

(Albert Schweitzer: as above)


“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfil the law of Christ.”                                        

(Galatians 6:2)


“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”  

(Philippians 2: 3-4)

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