Spirited Pets

Any pet-lover knows how attuned to emotions animals can be. Now some are saying that our furry friends also have souls.

BY: Dan Wakefield

 

In one of the darkest periods of my life, when my "resting pulse" was racing at twice the speed of normal, and my personal and professional lives were crumbling around me, my greatest source of comfort came from a cat.

I had not yet rediscovered my faith, and my relationship with the woman I lived with was in a near-the-end stage of paralysis. I was also near the end of my "Hollywood Period," brightly begun with creating the television series "James at 15," and concluding with scripts being turned down and pitch meetings that terminated with the deadly phrase, "We'll get back to you."

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When I went home to slouch on the couch in the most discouraging times, Puss, my girlfriend's fat old cat, whom I "adopted" emotionally, would appear, stare at me a moment, and jump on my lap, kneading my stomach and purring with that sound of feline tranquility.

She knows, I thought, and she cares. The idea that good old Puss was trying to cheer me up was deeply reassuring, a sustaining message that bridged the time before I hit bottom and found the solace of the psalms again.

I experienced what countless people know from their own pets, that these domesticated animals possess a wordless wisdom; they convey a special kind of empathy that enriches the lives of those around them.

She heard there were people called "animal communicators" who...believe that "animals, like humans, have a spiritual essence that survives death."

The latest testimonial to this phenomenon comes from an old friend of mine, Helen Weaver, who has written and privately published a moving book about her communication with her own longtime pet, The Daisy Sutra: Conversations With My Dog.

Helen's professional credentials are quite solid. A literary translator, her translation from the French of "The Selected Writings of Antonin Artaud" was nominated for a National Book Award, and she is co-author and general editor of "The Larousse Encyclopedia of Astrology."

Dan Wakefield's most recent book is "How Do We Know When It's God?" Visit his website.

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