**Note: I realize that I have skipped over Book #10. In all honesty, I am still reading it. It has been a more challenging read for me in that I’ve had incredible difficulty getting into the “flow” of it. In my unwavering stubbornness, however, I am determined to finish it no matter how long it takes. Stay tuned.
In the meantime, here is my review of Book #11.
In The Soul of All Living Creatures: What Animals Can Teach Us about Being Human, veterinary behaviorist, Dr. Vint Virga takes the reader on an educational journey of connectedness within the world of Animalia. Empathy and understanding of our fellow creatures reigns supreme throughout this book. The main lesson being that if we consciously chose to live in the moment and navigate the world with ALL our senses, just as animals do, our comprehension of our own lives can be seen in a much more positive light.
My only criticism of this book was that I found some of the case studies presented to occasionally fall short when the author attempted to make correlations between behavioural diagnoses and physical ailments. Instead of offering more detailed accounts surrounding the outcome of a specific behavioural problem, the author instead launched into age old tales of Buddhist teachings and spiritual interconnectedness. While this wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, I was actively seeking a little more depth, which I found slightly lacking.
To be fair, having studied animal behaviour for many years, my knowledge of the subject is slightly more advanced. As a result I tend to look for more detailed explanations when case studies are presented. In this book the reader is offered numerous scenarios for consideration. Each is presented under a designated topic area – forgiveness, presence, acceptance – just to name a few. This methodical organization really helps cement the author’s points when comparing his furry patient experiences to that of human emotion and understanding. Whether it is a domestic cat or a traveling pachyderm, Dr. Virga reiterates the importance of making connections with animals so that we can better understand what it means to honour our own human emotions.
What you will no doubt appreciate from reading Dr. Virga’s words is that the concept of animals as spirits guides is a very real and viable entity. Animals are our teachers. Simply put, they are in our lives to remind us to not be so hard on ourselves and that living in the moment can ultimately be the one thing that saves us.
Next up on the book shelf: Creatures of the Rock: A Veterinarian’s Adventures in Newfoundland by Andrew Peacock