Is That So?
The Zen master Hakuin was praised by his neighbors as one living a pure life.
A beautiful Japanese girl whose parents owned a food store lived near him. Suddenly, without any warning, her parents discovered she was with child.
This made her parents very angry. She would not confess who the man was, but after much harassment at last named Hakuin.
In great anger the parents went to the master. “Is that so?” was all he would say.
When the child was born, the parents brought it to the Hakuin, who now was viewed as a pariah by the whole village. They demanded that he take care of the child since it was his responsibility. “Is that so?” Hakuin said calmly as he accepted the child.
A year later the girl-mother could stand it no longer. She told her parents the truth – that the real father of the child was a young man who worked in the fishmarket.
The mother and father of the girl at once went to Hakuin to ask his forgiveness, to apologize at length, and to get the child back again.
Hakuin was willing. In yielding the child, all he said was: “Is that so?”
A FEW DAYS AGO, Jody [the Brown Piglet in this blog] came walking into the kitchen, holding a small puppy.
“Who does he belong to?” I asked “Me” he said.
I felt overwhelmed with anger, sadness and despair..all at once.
We are barely feeding the animals we have..thankfully the horses are in a good pasture with fresh water and thanks to my wolf rescue friends, the wolfdogs have a very plentiful supply of food–a freezer full of meats and several bags of dry dog food.
But no way..no more animals and a puppy that requires so much care…NO!
A little later Jody told me that actually his mom was taking the puppy back with her to Colorado but we would need to keep him for a week.
I picked the puppy up then–he’s a 6 week old Pit Bull and I looked into his blue green eyes and I felt so indescribably sad for the animals so loving, so innocent and kind… who have to depend on humans for everything, humans who cannot be depended on, who don’t even know such kindness and humans who are often SO CRUEL
Looking at this little boy, wagging his tiny sticklike tail, I felt like crying. In fact I did cry.
I wrote a friend who has rescued many dogs and I told her that I have always been afraid of Pit Bulls and this is what she wrote back:
I have never met a pittie that was mean.
People MAKE them mean.
They are known “as baby sitters”
In 1880-1900, they were called babysitters because they would lay down & die for a child.
All animals are kind.
It’s the humans that screw it all up. :>(
I guess I will be baby sitting this little boy for a week before he goes to Colorado. I didn’t sign up for it but this morning feeling so exhausted and worn out with just trying to keep things going here, I remembered the Zen Tale above.
And so I rocked him and every so often, he would turn around and look directly into my eyes with an expression that seemed a little sad and resigned and wise all at once. Then we went for a walk in the woods and I watched him watching, smelling, listening to and noticing everything–the wind blowing through the pines, a fly in the window, a pine cone rolling across the ground and I kind of remembered being like that when I was very small and everything was magical.
Now he’s sleeping next to me in his little basket…so innocent, fragile and dependent and I hope he will find love in his new home.
As for me, I will miss him and I will never think of Pit Bulls in the same way.
Below is a trailer for an award winning documentary called THE CHAMPIONS, the story of the Pit Bulls who were rescued from Michael Vick’s dog-fighting compound. My friend Susan Weidel, who helped me rescue 2 wolfdogs, tells her story of rescuing Little Red at the very beginning.
*If you would like to contribute to the continuation of this blog, you can do so here.
Because I am no longer able to do the work I did for so many years, this is my way of contributing, of maybe bringing some light to this dark world and so I really appreciate help of any kind…however small…
Thank you and May the Force be with You