Respect is the combination of involvement and keeping distance
When there is a toddler in the house,
crawling around, the parents are vigilant.
Little children open cupboards, put everything
they encounter into their mouths, etc...
Beyond fear and uncertainty, children do
not hesitate to explore the space around
them. Similarly, a pet that is crawling
or flying around does not have much respect
for the furniture of its house owner. A
child is able to learn how to behave, but
for a pet, this is only achieved through
punishment. That means that punishment
becomes a negative incentive for “not
giving respect” to the surrounding
Man is the most forceful living creature
on earth. Without forcing boundaries upon
him/herself or upon farms, there would
not be enough space within which to live.
Both humans and animals do not
take rules for granted. In some cases it’s
permitted to force respect upon others.
In the old days respect was won by means
of friendly fights (games). For animals
this is still the way to discover who will
be the future leader of the pack and who
will be more submissive. When an animal
shows its weakness to another, lower in
rank, the lower animal seeks to take over
a higher position.
People with little children make their house a safe haven for kids to play. Vulnerable spots in nature, where the public is welcome to dwell, are protected by natural limits which can be constructed by simply raising the level of groundwater. Sure, this is a negative way to set the proper distance, but the upside is that no fences need to be built and no surveillance is necessary.
People love pets, but what is the nature of their affection?
Further, people like to approach wild animals to get a better look by using binoculars to get as close as possible. If you come too close, however, wild animals become disturbed and flee. Except during the time that they breed, this is not a sin.Some people choose to have a pet as companions at all times, a fairly egoistic motivation to enjoy the existence of other creatures. Cats and dogs don’t mind however, as they have become accustomed to living in human vicinity for a very long time.
Some people do not see the difference between loving animals and keeping them.
Mixing up these concepts shows that some pet owners do not have any clue of what respect really means. An animal has the right to behave naturally and does not depend upon human affection (for its well being?). Of course man has the obligation to take care of the physiological needs of the captured animal and certainly, the animal will show signs of appreciation. But that is not affection. It certainly is not real love, not even surrogate love.What a wonderful world it would be if people would help animals to manage their own lives in a natural surrounding. Interconnected habitats are optimal for the migration of all living creatures, especially when circumstances deteriorate, e.g. when forced to move by famine or overpopulation. Furthermore when hunters stop shooting for pleasure or just for the fun of power play, animals will appreciate man as a harmless creature and not as a threat to its existence. Only then can a truly respectful encounter take place between human beings and animals. After that both can go their own way, just as the quality of true love is accompanied by letting go ("no strings attached").