We humans think we’re so much different than animals. That our intelligence sets us apart, puts us above them. But that’s a lie. We are no different. When you strip away all the capabilities that make us human, dilute us down to the bare bones, the feelings that hit the very core of us, we’re no fucking different than animals. No different.
We’re just as wild, just as unpredictable, just as untamable. Our nature is one of the same. When a human tries to tame a wild animal, they assume if they provide the animal with all they have to give in a nurturing environment, the need to react in a wild way dissipates, and the animal will acclimate to life as we see it. They will never turn on us.
There is always a chance they will turn.
No matter how much love you give, how much the animal is raised in our environment, how much their life strays away from the one they would have known in the wilderness, there is still that chance, every single day, that the wildness can override the structure. Humans are the same. We are a product of our environment, of our surroundings, of our past lives, and we’ve learned many lessons throughout our years in the art of protection and self preservation.
An animal has an instinct to react, regardless of how much love is shown to them. It’s second nature to resort to what has been ingrained in their psyche. Even when the world around them tries to show them otherwise, their go-to is the knee jerk reaction to people and situations – fight or flight.
Fight to survive.
Flee to survive.
We’re both left with choices..
the same choices,
animal or human.
Animals feel emotions as deeply as we do. They feel joy, sadness, grief, loss, rage, fear, pack mentality, love, rejection, power, they feel it all. Animals do not give a second thought to how they react. Time and situation matter not. A caregiver can provide all the tenderness and love to an animal as it would its own child, and with the snap of a finger, their jaws are ripping out your throat because you moved wrong, or you smelled weird, or the animal believed the situation was something different than what it actually was. Suddenly you are no longer a source of love.. you are a source of danger, and if they don’t react, you could be the death of them. And that will not do.
It’s always survival of the fittest.
They know the world is meant to cull the weak.
Humans act the very same way. We just hate admitting we’re more like animals than we think. The hunger, the lust, the primal drive, the desire to live, the desire to love, it runs deep within us. We can love so fierce, but oh can we run just as hard. The desire to protect one’s self, it outweighs many things, even at the expense of the ones who love us.
Instinct (per the interwebs definition) is defined as the inherent inclination of a living organism towards a particular complex behavior. The simplest example of an instinctive behavior is a fixed action pattern, in which a very short to medium length sequence of actions, without variation, are carried out in response to a clearly defined stimulus.
And it has been said that environment is an important factor in how innate behavior has evolved. A hypothesis of Michael McCollough, a positive psychologist, explains that environment plays a key role in human behaviors such as forgiveness and revenge. This hypothesis theorizes that various social environments cause either forgiveness or revenge to be prevalent.
Sometimes, there are instances where instinct and animal nature have been overridden by the love of something or someone else.
This is what I choose to believe in.
That in spite of the things ingrained in our very nature as human beings or animals, there is the possibility to override them. We cross the lines, we break the barriers, we achieve a level of trust and emotional security that wins over the fight or flight response. We can accept the love we receive. You no longer smell different, your moves are no longer considered threatening, you are safe. Safe to love, safe to trust, and safe to hold on to. We can quit baring our teeth, raising the fur on our backs, and narrowing our eyes.
This is a gamble.
There is no guarantee.
But that is what life is all about.
Putting your head into the mouth of the crocodile and praying it doesn’t choose to bite down.
We ask ourselves, can we love hard enough to override our natural instinct? To battle the fight or flight, to overcome the fear, the rage, to accept the thought of giving ourselves over to someone completely, trusting them with our own life, without wanting to massacre them before they have the chance to do the same to us?
If animals know one thing for sure, it is the ability the love unconditionally.
Their requirements are primal:
don’t hurt me,
don’t kill me,
how can we work best to survive this life together,
to always communicate,
to trust completely,
and to love each other enough that they would die for another,
or die protecting their children, their lifeblood.
Maybe we should be less like humans, and more like animals.
Life would be a fuck less complicated.