There’s a whole field of study devoted to animals, and a way of thinking about the era since human activities have affected the world, the anthropocene. I doubt if I can add much to what Freud said about animals: that children don’t find it strange to think that animals might talk or do things just like them, and that the same child might grow up to insult another human by referring to them as a kinds of animal. Our narcissism includes others in our lives in ways we sometimes don’t realise, and can leave us making judgements where we dismiss people and animals in the same breath.
Respecting life in all of its forms and the environment that sustains it can’t make living any worse; but if we don’t think about the conflicts that arise when we do and the poorly informed compromises we continue to make all life will probably end.
- We’re all narcissists, but some forms of narcissism are more open to the other.
- Be aware of what you’re doing and make choices. Eat meat because you choose to after you know what’s involved in the killing, not before.
- A lot of animals seem to know me better than I know them.
- Sometimes I think an animal understands something about me better than I do, and I wonder what it does with that.
- I feel desolate without the sound and sight of other animals.
- Birds in the trees let me think of people calling out: I’m here, I’m here, I’m here.