She was one of the guests whom I met during Thanksgiving dinner whose question made me startling; I suddenly stopped, then my mind was wandering around. She asked if I knew one of Ghandi’s sayings which was “if you want to look at the value of the nation, please look at how its people treat the animals’..Oh My, I didn’t know those words..But honestly, that conversation made me think.
I then, look back to my childhood when I didn’t get exposed with “the animal’s environment, I mean pets, cats or dogs”
Of course, as a Moslem, I never get used to dogs as we consider their saliva as haram (not clean), so that we have to clean up ourselves every time we want to pray. But I cannot deny how amazing dogs becoming best friends, best helpers for blind people, or even best guardians ..I just consider myself as “not used to being with dogs” that’s it!
On the other hand, cats, they are not haram animals, some of Indonesian Moslems have cats as their pets. But I don’t. My family never has cats; we only have fishes in the aquariums, that’s it!
What I remember from my childhood was that we never allow cats to come in to our house, we were not happy if cats sneaking around in our yard. We considered them as naughty animals who like to steal foods and pee wherever they want…As long as I remember, we treated them like our enemies..(Poor you!)
In addition, even some Indonesian story books do not really mention good things about cats. I still remember one image in one of my story books picturing the mother who are hitting the cats with a broom stick as the cat running with the fish in his mouth.
Now, I know and realize, cats are part of our life. They just need us to share some of our foods, not much. Why are we so stingy? Cats will most likely behave well if we treat them well and vice versa.
Anyway, I learn something. Animal is part of our life, There are certain animals that can be our friends; there are some who are born to be wild and should be kept in nature such as forest; there are some who have their own place and surroundings from which we could enjoy their beauty and get balance in nature, such as sea animals; there are some who can be and destined to be eaten, such as animal husbandry. There are of course animals from whom we could learn something..
All animals are God’s creatures. I know, I have heard and I believe that they praise God. Lastly, I would say that Islam is the religion of love and peace..we should treat all God’s creatures with love and help the world to be a better place in peace..