In my quirky novella with its even quirkier title The Sixth Day, a 17,175-Page Novella About Creation and Prizefighting, I suggested that God should have quit creating after he made his perfect creation, the dog. I feel more strongly about it today in an America where partisan politics strangle the common man and attempt to bury our hopes, dreams, and aspirations beneath a pile of vitriolic rhetoric with the sole intent to incite protest and outrage for no obvious reason other than its own sake. I give our politicians the benefit of the doubt when I want to say that they act with good intentions and no malintent, but I cannot be certain. I think I will start working on a new manuscript, and I will call it America in Chaos. Even though it will be fiction, I think the average reader will be unable to separate fact from fiction… similar to contemporary journalists who ply their trade without care or consequence.
I do not believe I understood the true nature of God until I read Brennan Manning’s Ragamuffin Gospel. It is in those pages I was introduced to the most basic virtue of all: unconditional love devoid of judgment and incrimination. It is a difficult virtue for homo sapiens to grasp, understand, and practice. Not so for dogs.
Two or three years ago, Mrs. tVM and I acquired a sign created by our friend Stacey with an anonymous quote you may be familiar with…
It is simple, beautiful and true.
When I was a young person in school, we were required to read the 19th century novel Silas Marner by George Eliot. I remember little about it other than Silas was a miser who raises an abandoned little girl. For certain, I never knew that George Eliot was the pen name for a woman, Mary Ann Evans. I must have been ‘resting’ when my teacher explained it.
Mary Ann Evans/George Eliot once said, “We long for an affection altogether ignorant of our faults. Heaven has accorded this to us in the uncritical canine attachment.” Ms. Evans/Mr. Eliot understood dogs.
It seems that we are always seeking approval and are disappointed when it is not readily and willingly forthcoming.
The fact is that dogs – like God – are the only creatures on Earth with the capacity for unconditional love. Dog cares not if a person is financially poor or rich, whether a person is green or purple, tall or short, skinny or fat. Dog does not care if you are a saint or a sinner. You may be a dirt bag, but dog thinks you are the most wonderful person on Earth!
Given dog’s unlimited capacity for love, is there any reason we should not strive to be the type of person our dog thinks we are?