There is something sacred about the working animal, this has been seen all through the twisted history of human beings, it has been forgotten only recently. You can not read a spiritual text – the Bible, the Koran, the Kabbalah, Buddhist teachings, and not see the sanctity of the working animal captured and reflected and honored, from. The ancient texts bow to them, thank them, they grace so many of the great paintings of the ancient world, of the Renaissance, their figures sculpted and painted and honored in all of the great museums of the world.
The humble donkey, the strong horse, the human being's great partner through history, in work, in peace and war. The dog and the cow, the sheep and the oxen, the elephant and the goa. The sled dog and the border collie, the therapy dog and the guard dog. Plato said human beings would never have crawled out of their saves if not for the horse who took them there and the dog who protected them while they slept and helped them find food and the elephants who hauled lumber through forests and jungles.
In our time, we have dishonored ourselves and our own history, so obsessed with work and money and security that we have forgotten these sacred beings and our need for them, and destroyed their habitats and ours. We drive them from our world and pat ourselves on the backs for our virtue and compassion.
Instead of keeping our bargain with them and making sure they survive in our world, we have turned them into piteous and needy versions of children, we exploit them be seeing them as fragile and weak, and we patronize them by emotionalizing them and projecting our troubled minds onto theirs.
Working animals are vanishing all over the world, sent away, confined to animal ghettos, forgotten and trivialized. Watching the horse Tex this Sunday at Blue-Star Equiculture, and watching my border collie Red this morning, I bow to these animals and respect them. I remember that there is hardly a wise man or philosopher or general or great painter in the history of the earth who did not appreciate their loyalty and great hearts and service. I will make it a point to honor them and remind fickle and selfish human beings what they really mean to us.