“and the Fear of Thee and the Dread of Thee Shall Be upon Every Living Thing…”

— Genesis 9:2

Yesterday we came across a river otter who crossed the road about 30 yards in front of us and disappeared into our pond. No cars were around so he needn’t have been in a hurry, but still he was very business-like, loping purposefully from one waterway to the next. He didn’t stop and give us any extra time to appreciate his company, and clearly—though we meant him no harm and regarded him with respect—he didn’t seem to appreciate ours.

Similarly, on today’s walk along a road through the neighboring wetlands, a large flock of ducks took flight, putting as much distance between us and them as possible, as quickly as possible.

Meanwhile, several pairs of Canada geese kept a wary eye on us as they

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

honked their warning calls and ambled reluctantly behind the cover of some cattails and tall grass. We spoke reassuringly to them, explaining that we didn’t intend to hurt them, but our mere presence was disruptive. Unfortunately wildlife tends to judge all people based on human nature in general.

Although fewer folks nowadays are out to kill everything they see, destructive behavior has been a hallmark of human nature since the genus Homo first set foot on the face of the Earth. Other traits representative of the species seem to be an over-bearing sense of entitlement (as in “it’s all here for us”) and a narcissistic arrogance that empowers them to see themselves as supreme among all other beings, whom they objectify as resources put here for them by some anthropomorphic deity for their benefit to exploit as they see fit.

It’s always disappointing that the wild animals assume the worst because imagesQB1DEJITof your association, no matter how distant, with the average gun-toting Elmer, when all you want to do is be friends.

29 thoughts on ““and the Fear of Thee and the Dread of Thee Shall Be upon Every Living Thing…”

  1. A young girl saw a cockroach on an outdoor wall and demanded that I squash the insect. There was no other reason for this creature having to die than the simple fact the girl did not like them. Now I questioned the child with the proposition that if I didn’t like her, would that make it ok to kill her? She responded “But I am a human”. I outright refused to kill the insect.
    A life is a life. Whether perceived beautiful or ugly, introduced or native, domesticated or wild.

  2. “The fear of thee and the dread of thee . . .” There’s a legacy to be proud of! I guess we know that millions of people take it seriously and utilize every chance to fulfill their destiny as planetary bullies and killers.

  3. Its unfortunate but its safer for animals to be wary of humans. Look at Romeo the black wolf in Alaska that was beloved by humans and dogs, he was shot by some sorry sob. I am almost glad when I see them run, because if they trust me even a little they will trust the next person and trust in humans gets animals killed until laws are passed that make it illegal to kill them.

    • You’re right! The animals are much better on the run. I just find it sad that the Bible, speaking for the God that supposedly created all the animals, is saying that the role of humans, the crown of HIs creation, is to rule the earth and inspire that fear through their exploitation and killing.

      As for Romeo (and Limpy) those stories are beyond sad. I have a memorial for Romeo sitting on my desk, and it is a reminder of his death and those of all the Wild Ones. The domestic animals we destroy have their own sad narrative..

  4. We actually try to chase off the turkeys here, because every spring hoards of psychopaths descend on this area to massacre them. (Also my husband doesn’t much like the fact that the turkeys poop in the yard and then the dogs roll in it!) We yell, run at them, and toss stones, but they practically ignore us. They only trot off about 20 feet then turn and look at us. Ooh, it really takes skill and cunning to kill someone standing right there gaping at you. That dreadful 26 days of sheer hell is approaching fast.

  5. Pingback: Genesis 9:2, Part 2 | Exposing the Big Game

  6. There’s a poem I really enjoy, “The Chance to Love Everything”, by Mary Oliver. It speaks of wanting to connect with all living beings.

  7. its safer for animals to avoid humans but sad for those of us that mean them no harm. I always secretly wish when I do run into an animal that eyes me that he would not and keep moving because I am in the minority. That moment of trust could cost him his life in the next encounter. Sad and terrible

  8. Every living creature has the right to live! If in the last million of years, the dinosaurs were to prevail, perhaps the “humanoids” would never have evolved! What about that?! Wish you a lovely day :-)claudine

  9. My thoughts also. I have wished that the first hominids in Africa had been caught in a rhino stampede. Maybe the next group coming along would have turned out better. Couldn’t have been worse.

      • Yes, some like Paranthrobus robustus (A. robustus) had the skull structure and massive teeth that indicated a tough, fibrous diet. The smaller Australopithecines (africanus and afarensis) whom, many believe were more direct ancestors of Homo sapiens, were more likely meat eaters. Unfortunately, the vegetarians aren’t the ones who survived, although earning two degrees in anthropology has taught me that the latest views on human evolution are likely to be replaced by later discoveries.

      • Physical anthropology was one of my main interests in college, so I heard a lot about Australopithicus robustus.
        Hopefully humans will clone a few parathropus on their way out. I’m sure they’d do a better job being the top primate…

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