I’ve always loved animals. I used to take my cat Dirk everywhere with me—even camping in the woods, sleeping in a tent. Often he would explore on his own; but when I called him, he always came running back to me. So I was deeply touched to read about the practice in Mahatma Gandhi’s ashram of sending silent love to the animal world as a way of extending man’s sympathies beyond his own species.
One night, at the end of a particularly deep meditation, I prayed for all the animals on our planet, bowing to God incarnated in those forms.
Afterwards, I went to a nearby café for a glass of fresh orange juice. It was unusually crowded, but I managed to order my juice and find a place to sit down.
Suddenly a pit bull dog emerged from the crowd. Sometimes that breed can be fearsome, but this dog was not. He jumped onto my lap and started licking my face as if we were old friends, reunited after a long separation! No dog—no animal—has ever shown such an instant liking for me!
When his owner finally caught up with him, he was astonished.
“He tends to be quite suspicious of people,” the owner said. “I have never seen him greet anyone in this way!”
I believe that, in the great web of consciousness, that dog sensed my prayer and rushed over to say, “Thank you.”