Gandhi used to tell his followers that by not fighting back and by looking into the eyes of their oppressors with love, they could change the world. I have often thought that there must be many individuals who have worked in slaughterhouses and other places of animal confinement, torture and murder who have glimpsed that spark of love and pure innocence in the eyes of their animal victims and begun a journey toward compassion.
Recently, I read about Alvaro Munera, once known as El Pilarico, a bullfighter. In 1984 the bull Terciopelo (which means Velvet) injured Alvaro during a bullfight. He has been in a wheelchair since that injury. You wouldn't think someone like that would seek protection for bulls instead of revenge. But Alvaro has used his influence as a city council member and activist in Spain to campaign against bullfighting.
Due to his injuries, he traveled to the U.S. for physical rehabilitation and attended college. In his words, he stated, "The US is a totally anti-taurino country, and due to my former profession I felt like a criminal. I became an animal rights defender. Since then I've never stopped fighting for every living being's right not to be tortured. I hope I will continue to do so until the very last day of my life." In addition to his anti-bullfighting experience in the U.S., he also speaks of the misery he felt as a bullfighter causing so much pain to innocent animals. If you want to read more about it go to www.sott.net/article/243041-An-ex-bullfighter-tells-why-he-became-an-animal-rights-activist.
Animals all over the world are finding ways to communicate to humanity that they want to live and be free, just as we do. When we combine our energy of prayer and action with theirs, it gives me so much hope. This week let us hold the wisdom of Gandhi and the animals in our hearts and see people from all walks of life gazing into the eyes of animals and, through that gaze, see the truth of who they are-our sacred brothers and sisters-here with us to share this precious planet in peace and joy.
With Love, peace, and gratitude from Judy; and Will, Madeleine, and the Circle of Compassion team.