Charlie posted this some time back, and it seems especially appropriate again today, so at the risk of letting her see herself repeated in print and becoming insufferably big-headed(too late for THAT), here we go, from 2016.
“Why then do you live, if you do not care to live well?”
Diogenes was a philosopher of ancient Greece; one of his best known eccentricies was to wander the countryside with a lantern, looking for the last honest man on earth. When the wealthy investors of his school sought to control his message by controlling his funds, he promptly took a lesson from the stray dogs in the area, forsaking his beautiful home that had been provided by said investors, and took up residence instead in a large barrel.
His followers became known as Cynics, taken from the Greek word “cygnos” meaning “doglike”, living for the moment, always questioning society’s norms and rejecting it’s foibles as means of control; I can only imagine what Diogenes would have to say about today’s self centered “celebrities” and politicians. No doubt the Grecian nobility thought this title was an insult, but what greater honor can there be, to be described as “dog like”?
Sure, I do things in public that some find inappropriate, barking too loud, hunkering when and where I want with no shame of reprisal, but also have qualities that humans can only dream of; unquestioning loyalty, unending gratitude, undying devotion.
Years ago, dad had a massive Labrador Retriever named Beebe; Beebe lived to fetch anything that flew, but had a particular proclivity for golf balls, and could easily carry them four at a time within his completely closed cavernous cave of a mouth . One morning a traveling minister, a fine man by the name of Harry Giffon, was having breakfast at the Casa and asked old B-dog if he wanted a piece of bacon,to which he (Beebe, not the Rev Giffon) responded by promptly spitting the golf balls out on the kitchen floor. The message later that morning was concerning how we should serve God and our fellow man like Beebe, with total abandon and without reservation.
And it seems that humans take themselves waaaay too seriously, buying the latest motorcycle, auto, home, vacation, etc, to impress their fellow man, when they would be humbled and shamed if they realized that their neighbor so wrapped up in his own drama that he’s actually paying far less attention to theirs than they might think.
Dad was questioning me yesterday about the next book, second guessing his decision to open himself up to ridicule, when it came to me; what dog fears criticism from anyone other than his or her master? If we allow others to dictate our actions based on our fear of what they might think, aren’t we making them our masters by default? And doesn’t that make Fear the ultimate Master? Perfect love casteth out fear, “perfect” meaning in this context absolute, complete, incorruptible, without compromise or reservation?
You know, like a dog would do it.