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Riled Up is a journal of science, the environment, exploration, new technology, and related commentary.  Contributors include scientists, explorers, engineers, and others who provide perspectives and context not typically offered in general news circulation.  For interested readers, additional resources are included.

The Conservation Alliance

Compassionate Animals
Hugh Bollinger

Compassionate Animals

From time to time, a group of Tibetan monks pass through my city. They create complicated sand paintings, visit people in hospice care to perform a solemn chant, and give lectures on living a compassionate life. The monks often speak about environmental matters and inform their listeners that animals are 'sentient beings' like themselves. Anyone who lives with a dog or a cat understands their companions have senses they don't understand. For other creatures this becomes more of a challenge to expect.

A remarkable video was captured in a reptile enclosure at a Taiwan zoo where a tortoise helped an overturned friend---who would have died from suffocation---to become uprighted.

In people, the selfless act by the turtle would represent a perfect example of 'compassion in action'. Animal behavior and psychology research is an ever-expanding field. Perhaps the researchers should ask the monks to give them some of their insights on animals.


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