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paolo
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22 Jul 2007, 3:22 am

Some reasons for which relationships with animals are comfortable for us are easy to understand. Animals don't lie. Love for animals by us may be contaminated by possess, desire for control etc.
But love by animals for us is something pure and wholly sincere.

There are other reasons more difficult to pinpoint. The disinterested relationship with a living creature, human or animal, has wider implications with Life, "connectedness", belonging to some larger process than that of the individual creature. I would venture to say that love (love, not carnal desire) is part of Life in a more pregnant meaning. Gregory Bateson used to say that art, religion (he was not a believer in the usual sense) and animals are tied in a meaning whole. He quoted Aldous Huxley who said that "God resembles more to animals than to men." In the ladder of beings man is in a place apart. Man has lost Grace. God and animals possess Grace, men is without Grace. (Steps to an Ecology of Mind). Art is an aspect of the desperate longing for lost Grace. And religion has also something to do with this longing for Grace.

When I read Bateson more than thirty years ago my thought was turned upside down, revolutionized. It's not easy reading but the effort is worthwhile.


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MrMark
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22 Jul 2007, 5:00 am

paolo wrote:
Animals don't lie...

People who work with apes that sign have seen this, but sometimes they will pull your leg. Like the one that fills his mouth with water and then signs, "Don't worry, I won't squirt you."


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22 Jul 2007, 5:11 am

My dogs can 'trick' me. they're a mischeivous disobedient breed - whippets. You can almost see them laughing at me sometimes. I think it's intelligent dogs who are disobedient, it takes brains. German shepherds always strike me as the stupidest dogs, ridiculously subservient and obedient.

"God and animals possess Grace, men is without Grace. (Steps to an Ecology of Mind). Art is an aspect of the desperate longing for lost Grace. And religion has also something to do with this longing for Grace."

This is really nicely expressed, interesting thinking. I always think of aspiedom (for me) as like being an animal trapped in a human body. god is dog backwards.



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22 Jul 2007, 1:23 pm

***WARNING! A SHORT MONOLOGUE ON ONE OF MY INTERESTS!***

Postperson wrote:
My dogs can 'trick' me. they're a mischeivous disobedient breed - whippets. You can almost see them laughing at me sometimes. I think it's intelligent dogs who are disobedient, it takes brains. German shepherds always strike me as the stupidest dogs, ridiculously subservient and obedient.


If you think that German Shepards are "the stupidest dogs, ridiculously subservient and obedient", it's because you never had one. I have a two-year-old German Shepard, and she's anything but stupid. I've never seen a smarter dog; she learns commands out of thin air, such as "get your ball" and "get my slippers" and "bark", grasping them very quickly. Regular commands such as "sit", "stay" and "heel" take two attempts at most to be learned. Seriously, I think she has a higher IQ than most people!
They're obediant because they're so eager to please and pratically worship their owners, not because they lack the brains to do otherwise. They're working dogs, and disobediance as a trait is not desirable in that catagory.

***

Short monologue over :)



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22 Jul 2007, 1:30 pm

Some people equate the desire to please the Alpha with stupidity.
Some people, especially in America, put far too much emphasis on the individual.


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paolo
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22 Jul 2007, 1:43 pm

Image
just
to lighten up



0_equals_true
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22 Jul 2007, 2:23 pm

I like ducks. There is something about them. I don't handle them but will talk to them when they are resting on that bank of an afternoon.

When I was very isolated and would spend most of my time in my room in university, some flew up and waddled on the grass outside my window. I'll never forget that, it wasn't even that close to the river.

I'm fascinated by different animals like the Portia Jumping Spider or the Lesser Egyptian Jerboa and ducks. I think them as special characters.

When I was making true friends for the first time it helped to think of them as special characters. I still think of their character, it is really my interpretation of them emphasized.

I know some people think of the people they meet as different animals.



SilverProteus
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22 Jul 2007, 2:38 pm

MrMark wrote:
Some people equate the desire to please the Alpha with stupidity.
Some people, especially in America, put far too much emphasis on the individual.


That may be so for people (I couldn't agree more, in fact), but who said dogs are people? :wink:



MrMark
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22 Jul 2007, 2:47 pm

SilverProteus wrote:
MrMark wrote:
Some people equate the desire to please the Alpha with stupidity.
Some people, especially in America, put far too much emphasis on the individual.


That may be so for people (I couldn't agree more, in fact), but who said dogs are people? :wink:

I'm sorry, I'm not followin' you. I wasn't talking about dogs, I was talking about people talking about dogs and people talking people. So far as I know, dogs don't talk, about people or dogs. They might talk to people, but that's a different joke. ("Son, are you sure that dog is dead?")


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SilverProteus
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22 Jul 2007, 3:05 pm

MrMark wrote:
I'm sorry, I'm not followin' you. I wasn't talking about dogs, I was talking about people talking about dogs and people talking people. So far as I know, dogs don't talk, about people or dogs. They might talk to people, but that's a different joke. ("Son, are you sure that dog is dead?")


LOL, I'm sorry, my brain's just twisted itself into a whole bunch of tangled knots! Rewind and record over the tape! :lol:



paolo
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27 Jul 2007, 4:51 pm

One by one I am dropping all my acquaintances, as I now call those whom once I called friends. Last episode: I called one of them a few days ago, I needed to "verify my existence": As there is no one thing anymore on which we agree, I talked about the little dog I now see nearly every day. "dogs very different from cats" I said (I am a famous cat lover). He reminded me that his friend reared (or rears) pigs. He says his friend told him how inteligent pigs are, they even understand when they are going to be slaughtered. "It doesn't take much for that" I answered. But it's like my bubble is filled of horror all of a sudden, it took at least two hours to recover.

I remember that 30 years ago he explained his friend's animal husbandry to his son (a child): "He rears them (the pigs) and then they are slaughtered" He didn't say this exactly the way DrStrangelove says the same thing at the end of Kubrick's movie ("in post nuclear caves animals will be reared and then WILL BE SLAUGHTERED! ") (enfasis in Peter Sellers acting).

Another thing: when I was a ten years kid I had this horrid idea that, after all, may be I was being reared by my parents to be eaten by them like a pig. So never talk of pigs with me. Im am not a vegetarian, though I have been that on and off. But stil I don't eat pork. I can't stand the idea that an animal is reared only to be transformed in meat. There is no other destiny for pigs.

On Tuesday the little dog came to my house with her owner. When I opened the door to go out she rushed into the elevator indicating her desire to come with me. I was moved, but perhaps her owner didn't like that.

I had posted this i initially in my blog. Ihave added something here, and in any case I have the impression that nobody reads the blogs.

To try to verify your existence, and your bubble is flooded with a pestiferous inpout.


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BazzaMcKenzie
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31 Jul 2007, 2:39 am

Hi Paolo

I'm off topic, but just letting you know I am interested in what you are saying.

Did you ever read "Kiss Kiss" by Roal Dahl? Its a book of short stories. One is about a pig slaughter house that substitutes humans for pigs.


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paolo
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05 Aug 2007, 3:45 pm

I would like to to some kind of survey about "animals in literature and cinema". In literature there is non much perhaps, except writers ad poets loving animals, which are many: Baudelaire (cats). Patricia Highsmith (cats), T.S.Eliot (cats). Salamov, one of the greatest Russian writers of modern times, after having spent 15 year in a Soviet lager and beimg abandoned by his wife and family settled with a cat before he was again confined in an insane asylum (Breznev era) until his death.
As for film makers one comes to my mind immediately: Robert Bresson, who in each of his movies places an animal in a strategic role (in "Par hazard Balthazar" the donkey is at the center of the movie. "His penultimate two films suggest that he had more concern for animals and the environment than for people, while the characters in his astonishing swansong L’Argent are simply the victims of a chain of circumstance; money is the root of all evil."
There are also hares (Mouchette) and dogs. In "The trial of Jean d'Arc" a little dog runs around the stake where Jean was being burned.



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05 Aug 2007, 4:15 pm

How about the works of Kipling? (with which I have only passing familiarity)


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paolo
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05 Aug 2007, 4:41 pm

Martel's Life of Pi Booker prize. I enjoied it. It's about a kid who travels on a raft with a tiger.
Kipling's Just so stories, yes, But I read Kipling when I was a kid (Kim and The light that failed). I don't remember much except that I liked him and that there was something about a cat "going alone".
In Hardy's Jude the Obscure There is something about a man being obliged to slaughter pigs. Again I was a kid, but I was horrified.

Here is Patricia Highsmith with one of her cats
Image
Truman Capote also loved and kept cats. lastly Celine walked through the entire Germany (at the end of the war) with a Dog and his beloved cat Bebert, which appears in his novels. There was Leautaud who socialized only with his many cats and other animals.