7 Basic Tenets Of Feline Philosophy
Having lived with domestic cats for most of my life, I’ve had the opportunity to closely observe their behavior. You can tell a purrson’s philosophy on life by the actions they take over time, and so over the years I’ve extrapolated some of the core beliefs of felinekind.
Setting aside for the moment the fact that they view us as their servants, their carnivorous nature, and that their quest to take over the world via the Internet is succeeding beyond their wildest dreams, cats are pretty wise. We can learn a lot from them about how to be peaceful and contented in our daily lives. Here are a few ideas:
1. Know thyself. Cats don’t care what you think of them. They’re going to be who they are, authentically, no matter what. If they don’t want to be petted just now, they let you know. If you listen, they’ll be polite about it. If you push your agenda on them, you might get the claws. Cats are unapologetic and open about their boundaries.
2. Forgive. Cats don’t hold a grudge. Sure, if you’re away for a few days, your cat might give you the cold shoulder for an hour or two when you return. Or if you’re the one who took them to the vet, they might hide under the bed for a while. But eventually they come back and nuzzle your hand. All is forgiven. Cats love you despite your human flaws.
3. Be compassionate. My cat companions have their own ways of caring for me when I’m feeling sick or sad. Just because they follow their own desires first doesn’t mean they don’t care. Cats are compassionate and will snuggle you or try silly antics to cheer you up. They offer their compassion without judgment. They love you and will be there for you when you need them most.
4. Meditate. Cats sleep. A LOT. Often they aren’t deep in slumber, but just catnapping, which is their version of meditation. They are musing, letting things flow by, yet with one eye slitted open, fully aware of what’s going on around them. Meditation lets you be present in the moment while recharging your batteries. Your value is not based on what you do. Follow your cat’s lead, and take some time to simply be.
5. Make your own happiness. Cats use purring to indicate pleasure, but also to comfort themselves when they’re scared or sick. They are happy in their own company for hours on end. Cats don’t rely on others to dictate their emotional state. They create their own contentment.
6. Receive graciously. When they’re in the mood for it, cats will receive your worship with a royal bearing. They not only give their love, but are happy to receive yours as well. They don’t get hung up on what they’ve done to deserve it. They are confident in their innate worthiness. Are you confident in yours?
7. Play. Even the oldest feline will sometimes surprise you with a burst of kittenish play. It’s important to kick up your heels and have fun! It won’t harm your feline dignity to run around after a string or go crazy over a ball of aluminum foil now and then. How can you be more playful in your own life? Of course, playing with the cat should be on the top of the list. Practice what you play.
P.S. And before I forget, don’t tell your cat friends that I shared these secrets with you. They are here to teach us, yes, but they prefer to be role models, letting us figure things out on our own. Luckily, felines have lots of patience. We humans can be stubborn and forgetful sometimes, but cats love us anyway. Be unconditional.