An Unexamined Thought…

Posted March 23 2022
It is a convenient unexamined thought that labels the animals who are farmed for food and fibre as “farm animals”. For in doing so, immediately their fate and use is signed and sealed, whilst their inherent worth remains concealed.

Concealed behind words, legislation, large industrial-like sheds, or paddocks and plains removed from view. And thereby these gentle souls are not touched by our compassion, consideration and kindness.

And we are not touched by who they really are.

For at the heart of this matter are animals who are possessed with hearts, minds and more. Popcorn the pig loves snorkelling in his wallow; whilst Priscilla, who is much more staid, prefers to stand, immersed in the coolness of the water, mud squelching deliciously between her trotters. Her look of sheer contentment cannot conceal her joy. And in that simple moment these two animals show that the moniker of “pig” is not one size fits all.

Both Popcorn and Priscilla are like all animals, in that they are unlike in many ways. Both unique individuals, each sees the world through their own lens, and has their own take on things within the confines of their form.

And whilst much divides them, there too is so much that unites them. And us.

One critical reason our gaze and consideration has been diverted from pigs, sheep, cows, goats, chickens and turkeys, along with animals of the sea and the other hapless animals whose form and features have fallen victim to human use, is that to delve deeper in we shall arrive at the irrevocable conclusion that our perceived human uniqueness may not be that unique after all.

All of which is rich fodder for us to do better, think clearer and live kinder.

And while the vested interests of animal-based industries can cast a plethora of reasons why the treatment of farmed animals is fair and just, it only takes one thing to reveal that it is not. And that is the examination, with a pure and honest heart and open mind, of that unexamined thought.