Saturday, September 09, 2006

Nothing new...

The realisation that animals are in need of our mercy, rather as we are in need of God's (though perhaps more deservingly!) is nothing new. It didn't even start with Francis of Assisi...

O God, enlarge within us the sense of fellowship with all living things, even our brothers, the animals, to whom you gave the earth as their home in common with us. We remember with shame that in the past we have exercised the high dominion of man with ruthless cruelty so that the voice of the earth, which should have gone up to you in song, has been a groan of pain. May we realize that they live, not for us alone, but for themselves and for you, and that they love the sweetness of life.

St. Basil, Bishop of Caesarea, (A.D. 320-79)

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