Weird. How can a domestic cat teach humans anything? I am sure many people will initially think that. The human is far too arrogant to believe that it is possible. However, James Bowen thinks his cat has given him life-lessons. He is about to write a book based around the mutual support between Bob, his cat, and himself. He was a drug addict. He was a busker in London, UK, until he met and adopted a special ginger stray cat. I am sure you have heard about him.
I don’t know for sure what lessons Bob has taught Andrew. I can only guess. And I am going to do the guessing here, on this page, right now, as I write.
Just Being There – Reliability
People are often unreliable. They don’t turn up or turn up late. They make promises but don’t keep them. They lie blah, blah…..
Cats don’t do any of these things. What they actually do, is to always be there. They love routine and stick to it. You know where you are with a domestic cat. Their reliability is a very attractive characteristic. Lesson 1: People can learn to be there for the other person and be reliable.
Yes, cats don’t argue. Well, that is not quite true. I do argue with my cat from time to time….However, the peace, quiet and harmony that flows from a no-argument-environment is very pleasant indeed. Some human to human relationships are almost argument free but a lot are peppered with the confetti of disagreement that grates and chips away at the partnership. Lesson 2: People can learn to stop arguing with their partners.
The domestic cat, God bless him or her, is very persistent. They get their way by keeping on going. They don’t give up easily, in my experience. If it is time to give Charlie his chicken, he gets his chicken after he has given me the cat equivalent of Chinese water torture; the drip, drip, drip of the faint meow that drives me into the kitchen to shut him up…please..Lesson 3: People can learn to keep trying, never giving up. People can achieve so much more in the long term with that attitude.
Someone To Care For
We have to care for our cats. We take responsibility for our cat’s wellbeing. It is a good thing. Lesson 4: People are better for having to care for another.
Cats have a much greater ability to quietly accept what happens to them. People tend to moan and complain and are rarely if ever satisfied with their lot.
The Serenity Prayer
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.
Cats have bucket loads full of serenity. Lesson 4: People can learn to find inner harmony by accepting the things they cannot change.
Without knowing it cats provide quiet reassuring comfort to us. Lesson 5: People can learn that they don’t have to do something for a person they love; they just have to be there…reliably.
Has your cat taught you something….?