An Excerpt from Jim Conrad's
of March 9, 2003
Issued from the woods edge near
Natchez, Mississippi, USA

This week's singing Brown Thrashers got me to thinking...

Biologists are trained to avoid being anthropomorphic when interpreting animal behavior -- they don't assume that ducklings follow their mothers because they love them. I believe in that admonition, but I fear that in our culture we have gone too far with it, and this reduces our sensitivity to, and appreciation for, other living things.

The Brown Thrasher at his appointed time overcoming his wintry sulk, then flying to the tallest treetop to sing his loudest and clearest has this week been what I think of as a local outburst of the Creator's spirit. Each morning when I passed that singing bird I tipped my hat in form of a silent prayer.

For, I believe that the Creator's spirit flows everywhere, and we -- we humans and birds and everything else -- are part of it, the way that notes are part of music. The Creator's spirit wrought something out of nothing, crafted unfathomable beauty and complexity out of chaos, and right now evolves the Universe and all things in it to ever higher levels of sophistication, and ever more exquisite manners of being and conceiving.

So, I think I know that bird's feeling, though I try to avoid anthropomorphism, and I know for sure that the bird's brain is wired much differently from my own. I know the thrasher's feeling because each of us is part of the same general flow of the Creator's spirit flooding through the Universe.

The bird doesn't sing because he's happy in a human way, but I am confident that he is indeed tickled through and through by the Creator's spirit flowing through him, just like me. Facebook Icon.