5 October 2017
From prey to predator and vice versa
Our dog Django has found a new pastime and we are the highly amused spectators. Since a few weeks we have three new hens – the previous ones ended up as fox food, may they rest in peace.. In the spirit of contributing to general animal welfare, we decided to adopt old laying hens through a dedicated organisation.
These old laying hens at first looked bald, skinny and miserable, as a result of the ‘intensive’ life they led in the egg industry. After a few weeks of sunlight and fresh air, abundant free ranging space, a comfortable pen with straw and perches, kitchen leftovers, freely found insects and worms, they can call themselves proper hens again, with their feathers back in full splendour.
Our previous hens were quite assertive and at times arrogant, especially towards each other. But they still remained prey animals that either fled or played dead when they sensed danger. Keeping them together with Django in the garden turned out to be not such a good idea.
So imagine Django’s and our surprise when we noticed that these new hens show a completely different reaction to the hunting instinct of our dog. Instead of fleeing or freezing, they resolutely go for the counter attack - to the great delight of our playful dog, who is challenging them and then runs off as a headless chicken when they charge after him as true Velocirpators out of Jurassic Park.
From prey to predator and vice versa, the natural order put upside down. The animals themselves do not seem to be bothered by it - for sure Django isn’t, and the hens appear to find it quite normal to be on top of the food chain.
Apart from a horror movie script forming in my imagination, I see quite a few possible life lessons in this amusing story:
- It pays off to take a flexible attitude in life
- You should not assume too much, as reality can be quite different
- Humour gets you a long way in unexpected situations
- Hardship will turn you into another person/animal
I am very curious to hear what it meant to you – do let me know. Do you have another unexpected perspective, let me know as well. Or maybe you know the scientific explanation for this phenomenon?
Ancient Wisdom as a vaccine
In De Standaard of 21 April (one of the major local newspapers) there was a beautiful article entitled "Art as a vaccine in the post-corona era". Why wait for that post-corona era? Yesterday the parable "This too shall pass" ended up in my mailbox.
28 April 2020
The invisible dog or how being hard headed does not pay off
"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results”. Humans excel in that. We somehow believe that if we keep trying harder we will ultimately succeed, even if we keep ending up with the same result, time and time again.
2 November 2018
From King of the Mountain to Swimming Champion
23 August 2018
What if email, mobile phones and social media did not exist?
12 July 2018
Don’t make change too complicated. Just begin.
14 June 2018
Why not take a mini-holiday
10 May 2018
Lost in deconstruction
"You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star" [Friedrich Nietzsche]
19 April 2018
How Dog had a breakthrough – a contemporary fable (part 2)
15 March 2018
How Cat & Dog should follow the example of Mouse, a contemporary fable
15 February 2018
Winter’s life lesson
21 November 2017
A juvenile delinquent dog or the price of adulthood
When we reach the age of adulthood we seem to have internalised all those responsibilities, expectations and limitations. As if the free creatures that we once were are forgotten.
18 January 2018
Lessons taught by wild geese
16 November 2017
Who is the King of Creation?
What if things were different from what we have always assumed? It can make you feel very unsafe to question your normal perspective. On the other hand it also offers incredible freedom and creativity to step outside the beaten track and become curious.
19 October 2017
How is your Monkey Mind?
We all have a Monkey Mind, Buddha said, with scores of monkeys, all demanding attention. The fear monkey is the loudest of them all, he is constantly ringing the alarm bell, drawing our attention to things we should be wary of and to everything that can go wrong.
21 September 2017
The parable of the businessman and the fisherman
We always have a choice: do we listen to our sabotaging inner voices or do we opt for what we really want, like the fisherman?
24 August 2017
Mr Goldberg and his assumptions
It is worthwhile to take a closer look at the assumptions you have about the persons with whom you have a relationship. You could develop the habit to ask yourself if a certain assumption is really true. And what if it is not?
10 August 2017
Asking for help is something we struggle with and we will only ask when we have no other option. We believe that asking for help and putting ourselves in a vulnerable position is a sign of weakness. Asking for help creates a warm connection between the asker and the giver.
20 April 2017
What if ....?
What if you would use a different perspective to look at what you have always assumed to be the objective reality? Does objective reality as such even exist?
9 February 2017
Frieda just asks
Asking for help is something that is hard to do for a lot of us. Self-reliance and autonomy are highly respected in our individualistic society. Another aspect of asking for help is that we build up a 'debt' as it were, We also do not like to disturb others with our problems
18 February 2016