Archive for March, 2011

Caring for Ourselves/ Caring for Our World: Part 1 (VIDEO)

Michael Stone of the Centre of Gravity Yoga Centre in Toronto (CentreofGravity.org) shares bountiful wisdom in this lecture that transcends yoga, buddhism and all labels and relates directly to the mission of the kindred spirits project and all animal lovers. He shares about the essence of how we can be of benefit to others in the most joyful way. Michael shares essential truths about how we can create more compassionate societies one by one. He also talks about many of the pitfalls of service such as burn out, vital exhaustion, empathy fatigue, pathological altruism, vicarious trauma, moral distress and systematic distress. I gained many insights from this lecture regarding burnout and compassion fatigue in animal lovers who volunteer or work in humane societies, animal shelters, rescue shelters as well as in animal hospitals or wherever there are animals suffering and in pain. Continue reading Caring for Ourselves/ Caring for Our World: Part 1 (VIDEO)

Breakthroughs in Veterinary Medicine: Full Circle

It is heartwarming to see the advances in 21st century veterinary medicine and how many new breakthroughs are happening recently. The advances continue to validate the concept of “One Medicine” for all species. Some breakthroughs are based on advances in human medicine that then are applied to animals such as this prosthetic leg for a pony. Other breakthroughs are pioneered in veterinary medicine and are then eventually documented sufficiently to be extrapolated to human medicine. One of the most exciting of these advances is adipose derived stem cell therapy for pets as well as for horses developed by Medivet. This breakthrough has allowed stem cell therapy for our companion animals to be able to performed in the animal hospital, thereby making it more convenient and economical. It is a major breakthrough in the treatment of arthritis in animals. Hopefully, this may then become more available for humans.  Continue reading Breakthroughs in Veterinary Medicine: Full Circle

Knut the Polar Bear: Transforming Grief into Compassionate Action (VIDEO)

Animal Lovers throughout the world this week are expressing our collective grief for the loss of a beloved kindred spirit, Knut, the Polar Bear. It is fascinating to see the outpouring of grief and the condolence books filled with empathy for our deceased four year old white fluffy Knut. The Huffpost article has a slide show of the condolences. Beyond being an orphaned polar bear cub in a German Zoo that so many watched being raised by his caretaker. Why is so much collective mourning happening? Certainly when you watch all the youtube video’s of knut as a cub , ones’ maternal instincts can show up instantly as well as the joy of seeing another species being so lovingly cared for by us. Another video shows the beauty of Knut playing with his caretaker, illustrating how we can all love and play together,when we let go of labels. What has been touched in our deepest hearts with the loss of Knut that brought out such profound collective mourning? Continue Reading Knut the Polar Bear: Transforming Grief into Compassionate Action (VIDEO)

Horse Rescue: Rescue Them, Rescue Ourselves

The concept of horse rescue and horse sanctuaries are wonderful illustrations of the more positive aspects of a civilized society, caring for the old, retired, disabled and injured of all species. It is especially poignant after all they have been through with horse racing and other equestrian sports. Sad to say though, there appears to be a shadow side to this, as there so often is with many animal issues. This New York Times article report “Veterinarian Fired After Finding Neglected Horses” has exposed the potential for neglect and abuse of our retired companions, whether wittingly or not. A good friend and colleague Dr. Sheila Lyons wrote an extraordinary response to the article, Equine Rescue Under Fire – How to Make Things Better. Dr. Lyons has taken the high road, going beyond blame and finger pointing and perfectly summarizing what we can do and what to look out for when we retire a racehorse or any of our equine companions. Continue reading Horse Rescue: Rescue Them, Rescue Ourselves

Loyalty, Compassion, Loving Kindness in the Midst of Devastation (VIDEO)

This video just came out illustrating some of the highest forms of altruism, loyalty, compassion and loving kindness that is possible for all beings perhaps. If one picture is worth 1000 words, this video says so much beyond words. In the midst of such devastation, how one dog guides the rescue team to his companion and stays there by the side of the  other dog.  Fortunately this story has a happy ending.  After an hour of coaxing the one dog to rescue him, they were then able to get to the other dog and bring him to a veterinarian for treatment.  No words can adequately express the joy in my heart when I see animals caring for each other like this. Please feel free to share any video’s, stories, photo’s that you know of that may continue to document these behaviors in animals. Collecting them here on this site will benefit many others.  If you would like to offer support specifically for the animals that are suffering secondary to the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, The Huffington Post has an excellent article listing organizations that help the injured and homeless animals.  May all beings be blessed with such compassion and loving kindness in these times. Continue reading Loyalty, Compassion, Loving Kindness in the Midst of Devastation (VIDEO)

We Are the Crest of the Wave: Kindred Connections Healing our Hearts

Dear Kindred Spirits:
It looks like we are riding the crest of a new wave.  In my last book, “Kindred Spirits, How the Remarkable Bond Between Humans and Animals Can Change the Way We Live”, I shared my vision of the human animal bond over ten years ago.  On this site, we share the 21st century perspective on where we are now and where we can go in creating a more compassionate society for all beings.  It seems like our thoughts, attention and intention are indeed working.  Just this week, Yes magazine came out with their new issue on how animals can save us.  yesmagazineanimalscansaveusSimultaneously, the New York Times just came out with an entire section called “Animals, The Creature Connection”,  requesting that people send in video’s of their connections with animals. The Huffington Post has had a section on Animals and animal video’s for a while now. One article was just published on the benefit of animals for Diabetics.  In addition, I was just interviewed for a radio show on the benefits of animals for cancer patients and was asked to be part of a new documentary on how animals can be of benefit for cancer patients.  Even the Village Voice has a brief article on the tragedy in Japan and how it is effecting one kitten and then says…”make sure to hug your cat”. The picture breaks my heart and I feel such sadness for all the homeless animals that somehow are dealing with this tragedy as well.  It seems like the hundredth monkey principle has happened. Continue reading We Are the Crest of the Wave: Kindred Connections Healing our Hearts

Healing Sounds of Loving Voices Transcend Time (VIDEO)

Continuing on the theme of sound health, the sound of our loved ones voices seem so healing to our hearts. The sound of our loved ones voices become associated with the love that we feel for them. It is a beautiful programming of our neural net to healing sounds. Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?
Certainly, all of us recognize that when we hear the voice of our loved ones, it brings immediate joy to our hearts that transcends all species. Whether you hear the loving bark, purr or whinny of our animal friends, they too bring joy to our hearts. That happens for our animals as well. Horse clients of mine share with me how good they feel when they walk into the barn and their horse hears their voice and immediate whinnies to them, even before seeing them. My cat would immediately start purring when he heard my voice after I came home after a long day of work. Continue reading Healing Sounds of Loving Voices Transcend Time (VIDEO)

Plan B: Mobilizing to Save Civilization: Yes We Can Change the Paradigm and Become more Self-sustainable

Communities are coming together worldwide to develop new self-sustainable realities that offer more compassionate societies for all beings. Lester Brown, a world renowned environmentalist, author and activist for decades has just come out with a new movie that will be shown shortly on PBS, called “Plan B: Mobilizing to Save Civilization”. I am usually hesitant to suggest a movie that continues to depict the sorrowful state of the environment that we continually see and hear about everywhere, as the one of the goals of this site is to offer a more uplifting, positive alternative perspective on creating a happier, healthier world for animal lovers and all beings. However, this movie is so well done and the second half truly does offer very realistic solutions to our global dilemma in addition to how quickly we are able to change the reality based on deliberate actions. Continue reading Plan B: Mobilizing to Save Civilization

Japan’s Earthquake: Healing Shaken Hearts

May the thoughts and prayers of all kindred spirits reading this blog go out to our brothers and sisters and their animal companions that were devastated by the unpredictable movements of Mother Nature at this time.
Kumano Kodo Ancient Pilgrimage Path
I have been in contact with my Japanese friends who instantly became kindred spirits when I was teaching and offering workshops and retreats there. Fortunately, through emails and skype I hear that they are safe and sound. There is a wonderful group in Japan called the Japanese Animal Wellness Association who bring together animal lovers throughout Japan. We all wish them and their animal companions peace, health and wellness throughout this journey.

Based on the understanding of the theory of Global Coherence and how we are all connected, I could feel the quiver “in the force” (using the Star Wars metaphor), of all the trauma at many levels. Personally, I feel those quivers, disruptions, quaking in the force more and more throughout the planet these days as we experience the quickening of the shifts of nature, environmentally, economically, politically and within each and every being. It does indeed appear that the shifts and changes are increasing in number, intensity, frequency. What can one do, so many ask. Continue reading Japan’s Earthquake: Healing Shaken Hearts

Sound Health for Kindred Hearts Part 2 (VIDEO)

Creating a more compassionate society for all kindred spirits entails many perspectives and dimensions. Sound Health, creating a more compassionate world of peaceful, harmonious sound is one essential part of it. In this Ted.com talk connected with this post, they talk about 8 steps to sound health. I have a few thoughts based on my experiences. I once proposed a theory to friends of mine that it seems like the human species is evolving into at least two new subspecies. One I called homo technis.  These are people who seem to be addicted to the motor vibrations of machinery. For instance, I see people who seemed to be totally attached to being on lawn movers, attached to leaf blowers, or any machine that has a certain noise vibration. Many of these people seem to be more agitated and easily angered. My suspicion is that their cells actually get addicted to the vibrations of the motor. One time when I was sharing this somewhat “crazy” theory of mine with some colleagues, one actually said that they actually felt calmer when on their riding lawn mower and that the vibration calmed them down. I found that quite amazing. Continue reading Sound Health for Kindred Hearts Part 2 (VIDEO)