A Dog Bark

Barking-DogWhat do you think of, when you hear a dog bark?

A pet? a bark of a puppy at a pet store that catches your heart, or maybe an annoying bark next door that’s always yapping when it’s outside, but it’s somebody’s cute, little fluffy. A companion? a bark of playful irritation when you’re too slow in throwing his ball. Or a guardian? a bark of security, knowing that no one is going to sneak into your house.

A dog bark = a pet, either a Chihuahua, or a Great Dane, or something in between. At least, that’s the average image that pops into the mind of a resident of the United States, but that’s not the only perspective of a dog bark.

What if you were a Jew during the Holocaust? Your heart thumping when you hear a dog bark in fear for your life, afraid that the Nazi soldiers will find you, and hurt you, possibly kill you–or worse, your only crime because you’re a Jew. Or if you were an Anabaptist, like Menno Simons, persecuted by both Catholic and Protestant, because your religious beliefs did not line up with theirs, “For this I, my poor, feeble wife and children have for eighteen years endured extreme anxiety, oppression, affliction, misery and persecution, and at the peril of my life, have been compelled everywhere to live in fear and seclusion; indeed, when ministers repose on easy beds and downy pillows, we generally have to hide ourselves in secluded corners; when they at weddings and feasts, pipe and beat the tambour, and boast loudly, we must look out, when the dogs bark, lest the captors be at hand” (Menno Simon’s Renunciation of the Church of Rome).

german-shepardIt’s interesting how something that can be seen as good by one person, can be seen in an opposite light by another. For example, dragons in Europe are seen as evil, while dragons in China are symbols of luck.

Each of us live this world in our own perspectives, designed by our individual experiences, but what would it be like if for a moment, we could break out of our own psyche, and see through the eyes of another? for our perspective, is not the only perspective, it is only one in 7 billion.

No, not all perspectives are right or righteous, but having the ability to see through their perspectives, can help us to understand them, to help them, out of love.

What would it be like if we could wear the shoes of others? Exchange our Nikes for boots? or our flippy-floppys for high heels? We need to work at understanding others. It is very easy to be so self absorbed, and to believe the way that we see life is the best way to see it. Or to falsely believe that nobody will understand us, so why even try?–Yet, are we all not human?

The history of mankind is saturated with the evidence that Homo sapiens are terrible in toleration. Maybe we could be the generation that breaks this cycle?

What do you think of, when you hear a dog bark?

*Inspired from a lecture by Dr. Diles

~Photos Obtained

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