Friday, 15 July 2011

Harm into Harmony

Examples of human-inflicted harm surround us. But if we hope for a better future we must cultivate visions of a restored balance. Nurture harmony in our own lives as well as seeking inspiring examples: A child day-dreaming in a field of wild flowers, or the family-run small holding that has turned to edible forest farming, or perhaps a person who has won the tenuous trust of a wild creature’s heart.

I know such a person, who has dedicated the last twelve years of her life to cultivating a marvelous and trusting friendship with a wild dolphin off the coast of Ireland. Though the sea is cold and often rough, day in and day out she braves the elements and the two friends head out into the wilds. They explore reefs and shoals and waving kelp beds, and perhaps most interesting of all, this dolphin introduces her to other creatures in the marine community – seals, sunfish, basking sharks, porpoises and even other dolphins, all presented with that wry dolphin smile. This magical trust is not something that could be bought for any price. It has been earned. 

If there is one thing about humankind that might make it special, it is that we hold at least the potential to befriend all wild creatures and in some manner, speak, walk (or swim) with and care for them all. 

I leave you with a recommendation: a diminutive but most marvelous book on this worthy topic called Kinship With All Life, by J. Allen Boone.

Leah Lemieux is an author and lecturer who works on dolphin protection, education and conservation initiatives. For more information on her work visit:

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