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The bond of life

I walk daily to the park nearby to relax in the lap of nature. And then I sit under an eucalyptus tree to wonder at nature's bounties.

india Updated: Apr 11, 2012 23:29 IST
Girish Bhandari

I walk daily to the park nearby to relax in the lap of nature. And then I sit under an eucalyptus tree to wonder at nature's bounties.

A few days ago, as I was absorbed in thoughts, I heard a raucous caw. There was a crow cawing continuously. Initially, I did not pay much attention. But to my annoyance, I saw the crow alight on a branch near me.

Its cawing became shriller and harsher. I looked up again. I saw that its eyes were panicky and there was immediacy to whatever it was trying to convey. As if prompted by an unseen force, I just walked away.

Hardly had I gone a few meters away when I heard a crash sound. A big branch of the eucalyptus had crashed breaking the bench I was sitting on. I felt a shudder. Clearly, the crow was trying to warn me of the danger in the only language it knew. I bowed my head in gratitude.

Soon I realised that the act of the crow was because there was a bond between all living beings. It knew there was danger to my life. There are recorded experiences all through history whe dolphins, porpoises and even whales have rescued drowning people and escorted them to the safety of the shore. The carnivore lives by the so-called law of the jungle, which in fact is a very well-evolved law.

No carnivore, especially lions and tigers, would kill unless they are hungry. Herds of gazelle may pass by but the pride of lions, if they had their fill, would ignore them. Similarly, no snake will attack unless threatened. We have a number of examples where bitches suckle kittens if the kitten's mother is dead. I have seen a disabled crow fed by other crows on my terrace.

Strangely, this universal bond does not seem to apply to we human beings. There seems to be no respect and tolerance for alternative views and beliefs, thereby generating distrust and violence.

We forget that enlightenment is nothing but the realisation that all life is equally precious.