Putting the Soul
back in Psychology!
Be grateful and generous...you have much more than you need!
Found this analogy I wrote back in 2009:
While praying in the clear glass adoration chapel at Belmont Abby College, behind Jesus, I saw a squirrel running up and down a tree. I began thinking about how God takes care of all His creatures, including the squirrels.
For the first time I reflected on the appearance of animals "trusting" God for their needs and how we humans do NOT trust God for our needs. One true belief needed in order to trust God is that God gives us what we need to be with Him for eternity, and not all of what we want. There is a lot we can learn from watching squirrels:
Squirrels don’t get upset if they don’t have the type of weather they want; accepting warm weather or cold, rain or shine. Expecting to do what they need to, to try to protect themselves from dying; not feeling perfectly comfortable all the time. Squirrels don’t complain because the weather doesn’t suit their "personal plans".
Squirrels don’t get upset when they don’t get to eat what they want. They accept eating what is available. They are fine eating the same things all the time. They don’t eat because they psychologically "feel like it". They eat to live, not live to eat. They don’t eat food that is bad for them. Have you ever seen an overweight squirrel?
Squirrels don’t get upset when they can’t decorate their nest the way they want. Their homes are functional and comfortable…and naturally esthetically pleasing. They aren’t trying to have the largest nest possible with space they don’t need. They don’t collect useless nick-knacks and objects to fill up space and simply "have stuff". They don’t suffer from "never being satisfied" with the way their home looks.
Squirrels don’t get upset if they have to wear the same fur every day. They don’t care about styles, brand names, or fads. They just want functional fur. Their fur doesn’t have to be dry-cleaned. And they don’t want a specific brand or specific smelling detergent. They don’t want to accessorize for every different event. They don’t want a different style of shoe and handbag with every outfit. They don’t try to look younger or older than they really are. They accept their age and the way God created them to look.
Squirrels don’t get upset when they can’t buy the toys they want. They use their imaginations. They can turn anything into a toy. They play with what God has given them. They don’t want the latest distraction, then quickly get tired of it and forget about it. They don’t go around bragging to the other squirrels about what they just bought or gift they just received. They don’t want something just because the other squirrels have one.
Squirrels don’t get upset about germs. They aren’t paranoid about getting sick and dying. They aren’t afraid of a little dirt. They don’t unrealistically expect everything to be sanitized. They don’t want anti-bacterial soap. They don’t freak out over a little germs and dirt getting on and in themselves and in their nests.
Squirrels don’t get upset when other squirrels don’t meet their emotional needs. They don’t unrealistically and selfishly try to use other squirrels to make themselves happy. They don't blame their feelings on other squirrels. They don’t unrealistically expect other squirrels to do what they want. They don’t unrealistically expect other squirrels to be perfect.
Squirrels don’t get upset because they have to work. They don’t unrealistically expect to be able to stop working one day before they are old. They don’t have retirement plans. They only save the amount of nuts they need for the next winter. They are not trying to "get rich" at the expense of others so they don’t have to do any work. They live like God is going to take care of their future unknown needs. They are content to work for and earn their needs for the rest of their lives. However, they are not obsessed with work. They don’t work at a particular job or project to try to feel confident or fulfilled or have "self-esteem". They use the talents and skills and gifts God gave them which glorifies God and benefits their fellow squirrels as well as themselves.
Squirrels don’t get bored when they are not being entertained. They don’t want video games, televisions, movies, 'wiis, 'gameboys', 'ipods', 'x-boxes', etc. They don’t try to prevent silence. They don’t turn on "back ground music" to distract themselves from hearing God and focusing on His presence. They don't reject the Holiness of silence. They don’t get bored just because they aren’t being entertained or having "fun". They are perfectly content playing outside, enjoying nature, working, spending time with other squirrels, and being alone in silence with God.
Squirrels don’t try to distract themselves from reality with bad coping. They always stay sober and live in reality, where God is. They live in the reality that only God can heal suffering. They don’t: get a buzz, get drunk, get high, use tobacco products, use pornography, use themselves or others for physical gratification, gamble, shop to feel good, eat to feel good, and go to bars and night clubs. Squirrels go directly to God for all their coping and healing needs.
Squirrels don’t try to have fake, fantasy relationships with other squirrels. They don’t unrealistically try to have real relationships through using text messaging, emails, 'facebook', 'myspace', 'instagram', or chat rooms. They don’t use internet dating to lie about and hide who they really are in order to find a squirrel to mate with.
Squirrels look more "grateful", more "appreciative", and more "thankful" for what they have than humans. Squirrels "act" more content with what they have than humans. Wise people say this is because squirrels DON’T have an intellectual soul and free will to choose. Wise scientists agree because squirrels only have instincts and brains.
With these wise and scientific facts being true, who "appears" more obedient and trusting of God?...The squirrels or the humans? We, who are intelligent and have an immaterial intellect and free will to choose are more ungrateful, greedy, disobedient, selfish, and Dumber than a Bunch of Squirrels!
And God loves us more than the squirrels and gives us more than the squirrels anyway, because WE are created in God’s image and likeness. And therefore we need to learn how to act more like Him. Everything we have is a blessing and temporary free gift from God; God gives us much more than we need. We don’t deserve the blessings of free gifts we are given. They are never our right. We are never owed.
The Holy Family of Joseph, Mary, and God the Son Jesus, lived in a small humble home. Their home was only functional. They didn’t have the money to decorate their home. They were not afraid of germs. They ate what was available and only what was necessary. They ate to live; not lived to eat. They did not have "stuff" or jewelry or toys or the latest distractions. They appreciated silence; focusing on and listening to Jesus/God. They did not use bad coping and distract themselves from reality; they went directly to God. They wore the same clothes and shoes almost every day. They worked hard their entire lives to earn their basic needs. They didn’t have unrealistic expectations of each other. They loved and accepted each other for who they were.
As much as God loves His Holy Family, Do you think you need more than them? Do you think you deserve more than them? Be grateful and generous: you have much more than you need! You have more than a Bunch of Squirrels!