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McElroy's way of combining stories and analyzing them makes this more than just a collection of sweet pet stories. It helps you recognize the important role animals play in our lives. The inspiration, hope, love and of course bittersweet emotions we've all felt with our animals are all stirred up when reading this book. She also devotes time to the wild animals that touch our lives, even if just fleetingly.
Animals as Teachers and Healers is highly recommended for everyone who's life has been changed by the love of an animal.
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Dr. Randour says that "I learned that as we gain access to our hearts and minds, by acknowledging the ways in which we affect the lives of animals, this knowledge benefits us as much as it does the animals." She believes that humans have much to learn from non-human beings and points out that people have had animal companions since the beginning of time.
One of the most important things about animal wisdom is that it's always available to us. All we need to is become aware, which is "about deciding, learning, and acting." Once aware, we then develop compassion. Dr. Randour has found that learning about the intelligence and emotions of non-humans enables us to "overcome other distinctions, such as race, gender, nationality, and religion."
Her underlying philosophy is "ahimsa--harmlessness to all living things."
Dr. Randour includes interviews with world religious and spiritual leaders regarding their beliefs about the ways animals should be treated. She also includes numerous anecdotes describing how animals help humans with love, healing, spiritual growth, and death experiences.
"My work on behalf of animals infused me with a sense of purpose and prepared me to accept my own spiritual energy," Dr. Randour says. Animal Grace will help all readers understand how they too can enter into "reciprocal spiritual relationships" with their fellow non-humans.
This book was a wonderful read on how to increase our spiritual attunement/connection to animals. Animals have so much to teach us, especially by their examples. It was thought provoking and gently written.
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This is not a recommended reading for someone who does not appreciate the earth, but for people whose hearts are ready to accommodate the creatures that share with us the planet and are contributing more to our souls than we realize.
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