THE RIGHTS OF ANIMALS
It is rather the ego of man that the thinks he owns the world. Strange theories have developed since the very beginning. Two major religions of the world talk of the first man and the first woman – Adam and Eve in Christianity and Adam and Hawa in Muslim religion – who took shape out of the pleasure of God who kept them in the beautiful garden of Eden or Aden. Among Hindus too there is a belief that after Pralaya (deluge) it was Manu who brought life to exist on this planet. All religions have preached that the world is meant for man. They talk of communion between man and God. But Science has proved it wrong. It was not man who owned the world in the beginning. Man developed physically, as we find him, at a very late stage. The planet started with micro life. There is a period of millions of years even between the existence of the micro life and the huge dinosaur who owned the world and ruled over it.
But even nature has been cruel to this animal world for whom actually everything in the world was meant. It gave man a developed brain that did not develop in any other creature. It was only, man who could think and plan about his existence and welfare. He polluted the land, the space and the seas that nature had made for all. Now he owns the world and is the master of all that he surveys. He feels that all the creatures on the Earth and even beyond the Earth are meant for him.
The ego of ownership has made man the cruelest animal in the world. He builds palacious buildings and big cities on the abodes of small creatures like ants and other burrow dwellers. Animals are sacrificed at the altar of gods in temples to please the deity. In certain religions they are sacrificed on a particular occasion being considered dearest to man. What hypocrisy!
Nature made vegetation that is meant for all living beings. But many felt that all the animals are meant for him. He killed elephant for its tusks, deer for its horns, and a large number of animals for their hide for shoes, decoration and dresses. He boiled living pregnant sheep to secure ‘pashmina’ from the fetus. People take pride in having ‘pashmina’ shawls. He killed musk dear to have musk from his stomach. He kills a large number of animals for food so that increasing in number they may not own the world
back from him.
Medical world has made its mansions on the blood and torture of these mute creatures that man thinks his property. Monkeys, rabbits, rats, dogs, cats and other small animals, birds and fish are used for experiments in laboratories. The whole world denounces the killing of Jews in gas chambers by Hitler. But the sophisticated saviours or man paralyze and torture animals on ultra modern tables with ultra modem equipments. They kill tortuously millions of animals to prepare medicines, nail polish, lipstick, floor polish and a number of other things. He feels that all these creatures are meant for him.
Man has evolved strange theories for his own selfish ends. ‘Jeevo jeevasya bhojanam’ i.e., one living being is the food of another living creature. Bigger fish eats the smaller one. That is how nature keeps the balance in the world. Smaller creatures are meant for the bigger creatures. Does man think himself the biggest fish and all other creatures (even the elephant) the smaller fish? Who will remind him of the doomsday after which the animal world would claim earth back from man and he may be meant for them.