Animals Aren't Broken: Ethics in Animal Communication

We live in a break it, fix it or throw it out society. Being a consumerist society, we're conditioned to do so. It's exceedingly easy to run to Target to buy a replacement, or to hop on Amazon, purchase your item with your Prime membership and have it delivered to your door two days later. Often, should you want to get something repaired, it's more cost-effective and time-effective to simply buy a new one. Out with the old, in with the new. What does that say for us as a society?

Not a lot, for sure. There are a multitude of alarming repercussions from being a throw away society. From my perspective, one of the most frightening and devastating consequences is when we start having that attitude with sentient beings. Animals, for instance.

My Pet Is Doing Such-and-Such and You Need To Fix It

I can't begin to tell you how many times I've received this question (or a variation thereof) from folks: “Can’t you just tell the animal to do/not do something and fix it? You’re the animal communicator!” As I've said many times before, the primary relationship is between the animal and their human; so nope, can't do that, won't do that. I can help, I can support, but I'm not The Fixer.

Somewhere along the line the myth sprung up that if you only make an appointment with the animal communicator, everything will be 'fixed'. Not only fixed, but the problem will magically vanish, as if it never existed. Voilà!

But there are some fallacies with that line of reasoning:

  1. Animal communication is not magic

  2. The statement is made from the perspective that something is amiss with the animal, therefore it's the 'animal's fault'

  3. The statement comes from a position of power-over, instead of relationship-with

  4. The person is looking, usually unconsciously, to relinquish at least part of their share of responsibility in a relationship to another sentient soul

  5. Sentient beings aren't objects that break and need to be fixed

Animal Communication and Ethics

I have begun my second year of intensive study with Modern Shaman Kelley Harrell. One of the focuses of this entire year is ethics, each month covering a different aspect of ethics as it pertains to shamanism. I feel like I'm off to a head start as I have always worked with a Code of Ethics for Animal Communication.

As part of the course work, Kelley shared her Code of Ethics with me. When it comes to animals, it says, in part:

.....I only work with animals whose humans understand that collective responsibility and will approach the concern as a unit, and will devote themselves toward that healing as a unit.

I can only help animals as much as their humans are willing to help them.

Do not ask me to fix your animal, or to stop unwanted behaviours.  Nothing is broken, and all behaviours tell part of the story.  My role is to balance dynamics such that the animal’s power is restored.

Yes! That says it so well: "Nothing is broken, and all behaviours tell part of the story.".

What I particularly love is how Kelley refers to a story. Using the word 'story', takes the emotional charge out of what's happening, allowing us to step back and observe what's going on, participating as we might when watching a good movie or reading a book with a compelling plot line. Observing and anticipating, not judging and blaming. Isn't there a freedom to that?

Everything goes in to telling the story of the relationship between the animal and their person. Every action, response, thought, emotion, reaction from all the sentient beings that are in that family unit. The history of the family goes into telling the story. When we step back and look at everything, a certain flow is set up in creating the current story.

Stories aren't 'fixed', they evolve and morph, shining light on different parts of the tale, highlighting different characters and themes. And as a character in the story that's between you and your animal pal, your part in the story plays a significant part, at times highlighting and at other times influencing a kaleidoscope of particulars that unite into one beautiful tapestry.

The next time you think your animal buddy needs to be 'fixed', and it will happen because it happens to all of us from time to time, look at your part in the story. Look at how your story character is shaping and influencing the storyline. Once you have an understanding of your part in the story, then call your animal communicator. Instead of telling her/him you want the problem 'fixed', ask for help in recreating the story between you and your animal pal(s).

As you begin recreating the the story between you and your animal family, remember you don't have to do this by yourself. I am here to help, support and guide you as you are recreating - schedule your free discovery call and let’s see how we can work together!

Here's To New Beginnings,