I remember back when I was a young child playing with some friends outside on a hot sunny day. We had found some ants. One of my friends immediately ran to get his magnifying glass so he could show us a new trick. A very cruel trick in fact! I think you probably know where I am going with this... The young boy placed the magnifying glass over the ant so the sun would hit the glass and slowly burn the ant. The poor helpless ant would try to walk away, however the young boy would continue following the ant with the magnifying glass until the ant could no longer move. Smoke would emerge. Soon the ant was burnt to a crisp. The cruelty seemed quite normal at the time. Just a fun game for kids to play, right? A science experiment of sorts. But in my heart of hearts something just didn't feel quite right.
As a child I watched my parents and other adults around me killing bugs as if it was a perfectly normal and acceptable thing to do. Roach spray, ant traps, fly tape...all normal! Adults would scream with fear when a spider approached and make ever effort to kill it quickly, or try to get someone else (a brave soul) to come over and kill it for them. Bees would invoke fear, ...always the fear of getting stung, so adults would carefully try to shew the bee away or just start running while waving their arms in fear. Flies got swatted at, ants stepped on, roaches sprayed with raid, mosquitos would get smacked hopefully before biting you! All normal and acceptable behavior. But is this really ok? Unless we are raised in an ultra spiritual and peaceful community that is against harming bugs, we get conditioned as children to believe that hurting and killing bugs is absolutely acceptable. We actually become indoctrinated in this violent behavior as we watch commercials for insecticides, roach baits, etc. Killing bugs has become the societal norm! Even just last week when I had visited my acupuncturist for an appointment, I had pointed out to her that there was a huge spider on the wall. Her immediate reaction was to kill the spider. I actually pleaded with her not to do so. She told me her clients would be scared if they saw this spider. I told her that I would help her remove the spider after the session. As she left me alone in the room with needles in my hands and legs, I softly whispered to the spider in my mind that it would be in his best interest to leave the room and hide or else the acupuncturist may try to harm him.
You see...bugs are conscious too. Perhaps their consciousness differs from ours? But they are still alive and have their own instinct for survival just like you and me...and pretty much every creature on this planet. According to Peta's article “Be Kind to Cockroaches” researchers used computer simulations to show that, even with their tiny brains, insects have enough neural circuits to possess consciousness, and they may even be able to count. According to professor Lars Chittka, one of the researchers, “Animals with bigger brains are not necessarily more intelligent.” We may not know exactly how insects think or feel unless we are quite empathic or even psychic. But everything is in fact connected, and when we harm others we are in actuality harming ourselves on an energetic level, whether we realize it or not. Ofcourse we may accidentally injure or kill a bug just by walking and stepping on one. This happens all the time. But when it is done consciously, on purpose and without any regard for the bug, then inevitably this affects us in some way.
There was a time I caused pain, suffering and inevitable death to countless bugs,... that is until I woke up. Yes, that's right. I became conscious of what I was doing. Something changed within me. I started to feel bad. I started to feel compassion. I started to realize that the bug and I are one in the same. We both have a desire to live. We are both trying to survive in this cruel world. This feeling began one day out of no where when I found a huge roach in the cupboard of my new apartment. Without regard I grabbed the big can of raid and started spraying this roach with fervor as I watched it struggle and finally take it last breath. A feeling of horror came over me as I realized what I had just done. It was beyond cruel. I had decided I could never do this again. In fact, I never touched that can of raid ever again. I told myself at this point that I could no longer live this way. I can no longer kill bugs. I was experiencing an empathy that I had never experienced before. It hurt. I didn't want to hurt like this ever again.
However, there was one more incident that sealed the deal for me. It was an incident with a beetle. One of my cats had attacked and nearly killed a beetle. I found the poor guy outside my front door. He was looking up at me as if to ask for help. He looked like a war torn soldier. I felt it was my duty to take him out of his misery. Unfortunately, that's easier said than done with a beetle. I started stomping on the poor little guy but his shell was too thick to break. I felt terrible. I was making his suffering worse. I decided I must flush him down the toilet. As I watched him drown in what must have been excruciating pain, I started to cry hysterically. What was meant to be a peaceful euthanization had turned into a heinous act. I was beyond disturbed. I decided no more killing, not even mercy killing. It was just too painful of an act to commit anymore.
However, the story doesn't end here. In a strange karmic turn of events, I become a reiki energy healer and start giving reiki to bugs. My relationship with insects changes quite dramatically at this point. I start to feel an energetic connection to all life on planet earth, no matter how big or small. Now with reiki I can actually communicate energetically with bugs. I can help heal them and thwart their suffering with reiki. Strangely enough, injured and dying bugs started presenting themselves to me out of nowhere, as if the universe was sending them to me for a healing right before they passed away. Whether walking down a flight of stairs and sensing a presence on the staircase, or sitting by a swimming pool and sensing a bug struggling in the water... They were all calling out to me for help. To this very day bugs continue to appear to me out of nowhere and I still continue to give them reiki. I feel truly grateful that I am able to provide such a compassionate service to all the tiny little beings of this planet that are so often under appreciated and under valued by the human race.
But oddly enough, right after I had started writing this article, I was presented with yet another test! Once again I had to make the decision to euthanize a bug. This time it was an ant and it was all my fault! I had attempted to hang a poster (for my poetry book reading event) on a tree next to a bookstore. It was actually a bookstore that turned me down to do a book reading event for my book. So to exact revenge I was going to put my poster up right by their store. Unfortunately as I started wrapping tape around the tree, I was struck with the horror of what I had just done. I had caught a whole bunch of ants in the tape. Quite a few died but one actually got stuck in the tape. I went to my car to get out a knife to help free this poor trapped ant but it was of no use. I couldn't free him. So instead of leaving him to suffer a slow death in the tape, I asked the universe for my forgiveness, gave the little guy some reiki and I quickly cut the ant with the knife to relieve him of his torturous fate. I cried for a while but had to move on, knowing that I did the right thing... or at least hoping that I did! The point is,.. I cared for this bug's welfare. I recognized that this little ant's life was just as important as any other life on this planet. I couldn't just walk away knowing that he would suffer.
Now, as you read this article, I'm not sure if you can relate to what I am saying or not? Perhaps you've never experienced any real connection with bugs? If this is the case, I hope by reading this article you develop a greater understanding and respect for the many beautiful tiny creatures on this planet. Just because they are smaller than us doesn't mean they are less important. Please try to take the opportunity to be kind, compassionate and loving, not only to bugs but to all life. You will find that the more positive energy and love you put out to others, the more will come back to you! Consider becoming a positive role model. Teach your children and those around you to be kind and respectful of all life including bugs! Help make a positive difference on this planet! Help create a more peaceful world! A more peaceful world begins with practicing compassion for all walks of life no matter how big or small... So please be good to the bugs...for they are conscious too! Peace and Blessings!
Jennie Haiman is a Reiki Master Energy Healer, Co-Founder of Self Saviorz Society California Non-Profit 501(c)(3), Poet, Author and Entertainer with goals to help raise the vibration and consciousness of humanity!