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Just a Little Note

August 21, 2009

Ocellated-Lizard

From the New York Times blog Happy Days: The Pursuit of What Matters in Troubled Times, about revisting a silent Buddhist retreat for the 2nd time:

Also, my view of weeds changed. There’s a kind of weed that I had spent years killing, sometimes manually, sometimes with chemicals. On a walk one day I looked down at one of those weeds and it looked as beautiful as any other plant. Why, I wondered, had I bought into the “weed” label? Why had I so harshly judged an innocent plant?

If this sounds crazy to you, you should hear how crazy it sounds to me. I’m not the weed-hugging type, I assure you.

And as long as we’re on the subject of crazy, there was my moment of bonding with a lizard. I looked at this lizard and watched it react to local stimuli and thought: I’m in the same boat as that lizard — born without asking to be born, trying to make sense of things, and far from getting the whole picture.

I mean, sure, I know more than the lizard — like the fact that I exist and the fact that I evolved by natural selection. But my knowledge is, like the lizard’s, hemmed in by the fact that my brain is a product of evolution, designed to perform mundane tasks, to react to local stimuli, not to understand the true nature of things. And — here’s the crazy part — I kind of loved that lizard. A little bit, for a little while.                                                                                                                       -Richard Wright

I thought this was really well written and very simple and insightful.  We are all the same.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. August 22, 2009 11:21 am

    this looks like our friend mantis.

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