Our animals spend time with us for a reason. They may come as a surprise, handed to us by a friend or lover, or even a truck driver stopped at a stoplight; or they may be hunted out, at animal shelters, pet shops or the Internet—but they are always given to us because we need them.
We need them for company during dark times, or because of changes in our relationships. We need them for love, and to teach us what we have not learned sufficiently: compassion, loving kindness, selflessness, responsibility, and most important of all, how to be in relationship with another soul.
We learn from them by watching how they behave toward us and others, and how they navigate their world. We learn from them the greatest of all lessons in life–how to love. Some say that we cannot love ourselves without first experiencing loving others, be it a stuffed animal, a treasured toy, brother, or sister, or a puppy. Through this love, we feel something inside that gives us life-force energy that we ultimately learn to give to others. Loving us, animals are a direct conduit to Spirit. With every wag of their tail and rub against our shins, we experience this highest love— the love of Spirit.
This morning my cat, Mimi, struggled through a stomachache and vomited. She took the medicine I offered her and after a brief sleep emerged purring and talkative, ready for her day. She is not in perfect health but neither am I—yet, she deals with it much better than I do. I’m sure she feels the discomfort that her malady brings her as much as I do mine, but she doesn’t let it get her down, cause her to retreat from the world, or stop her from loving me. It’s hard to feel joyful and loving when you’re feeling anxious, but she shows me there is always loving to do—and joy in that loving.
My cat is my teacher. She teaches me to be honest when I tell her how long I will be away from the house. She teaches me to look her in the eyes when she has something to say. She teaches me to feed myself, on time and something nutritionally pleasing. She teaches me to play when I sit too long in front of the computer or the TV. She teaches me to sleep when my body needs rest, and most of all to make time for loving.
She teaches me that all animals are souls, as capable as we are in rising above hardships and sometimes making mistakes. We can easily overlook these relationships—they are not human—but they just might be our greatest teachers in navigating our human world.
Annette Goggio, MPH, holds graduate and undergraduate degrees in the health sciences. Her practice in energy medicine is based on the teachings of Dixie Yeterian and Donna Eden of Eden Energy Medicine. Ms. Goggio offers a suite of services including hands-on and distant healing, life counselling, and numerology. To learn more please visit: aquantummoment.com. Her book, Healing: A Conversation, provides readers with a framework for understanding life purpose and the education of the soul.