Humans and animals. How are we different? Or perhaps a better question might be — How are we the same?
Some people believe animals aren’t conscious and that they don’t have empathy or feel pain. Other people believe that humans are above animals and that we can do with them whatever we wish.
But why do we think these things? And is it possible that the way we treat animals has a defining impact on our humanity itself?
We invite you to watch the following three powerful, compelling, short videos and consider if they affect the way you view humanity’s relationship with animals.
Video 1: Share the Love
This very short video is sure to make you smile, and it may also make you cry with joy. As you’ll see, hugs aren’t only for humans.
“A compassionate world begins with you.”
Video 2: Do animals have emotions?
In this 2nd short video, Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard questions why we regard human life as having infinite value but see the value of animals as being almost zero.
Do you think, if we were to widen our circle of compassion and recognize animals as sentient beings who are not very different from ourselves, we’d become better people?
Video 3: Are you brave enough to make a difference for animals?
In the last short video, you’ll hear the profoundly compelling story of Damien Mander.
Mander spent 9 years as a mercenary (a professional soldier hired to serve in a foreign army), making 12 tours to Iraq. When he got out, he says, he was “programmed to destroy.”
Over time, Mander’s thinking and his definition of bravery evolved. Instead of defining bravery based on a willingness to kill, he began to define it based on a willingness to give up everything in his life to try and stop the suffering of animals.
He ended up using his life savings to found and grow the International Anti-Poaching Foundation.
He makes the point that every worthwhile action requires a level of sacrifice. And he ends with a question:
“Next time you have an opportunity to make a difference for animals, will you be brave enough? Yes or no?”
Now that you’ve watched these three videos, we’d love to hear from you in the comments:
What are you taking away from these messages? What moved you?
How do you feel about the human-animal bond?
Are there things you want to change in your own life or in our world?
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