A reaction is what you do, say or think as a result of something that has happened. Every time we react to an event or situation, not only our personality is reflected but also our perception of the outer world. In other words, we show who we are by means of our behaviour. But, is it that simple? Can we judge others by their reactions?
The short answer would be no. Imagine that you are a wannabe writer and you show your latest unfinished short story to a good friend who is an avid reader. You might expect a truly informed opinion or a thorough critique but, maybe it just so happens that your friend is not in the mood because of a recent read on child abuse. That read has just provoked so dramatic an impact on him that your friend’s first reaction to the draft is not just negative, but almost violent: “This is bullshit”.
Must you rethink your entire writing career? No, you must not. The same story would have triggered an enthusiastic and positive response only if the timing of the events had been different. The message I am trying to convey is that we often overplay the significance of extreme reactions, both positive and negative. Would it not be better if we took them with a pinch of salt?
However, the mechanism of judging others is purely based on our careful observation of such reactions and therefore, we cannot help but be always poised to answer, with honesty, to the world that surrounds us. That way, we will do, say or think what we really meant, projecting a more accurate image of ourselves and making ourselves better known.
I’d always had mixed feelings about dogs, keeping them away for fear of being bitten while aching for having one of them as a pet. Sucre is a birthday present I gave to my wife on 2010, the year before we got married. I’m lost for words when it comes to describing the strong bonds that emerged out of the blue between we and him.
Human beings have been domesticating dogs since ancient times. And their unique and special way of communicating with humans has become one of the most successful when compared to any other domestic animal.
Maybe there is no clear evidence but based on my intuition I think many of us are hardwired to love dogs. At least, I am. No matter how hard my family had been discouraging me, I finally got away with it.
Sucre was still a puppy when he joined our family. At the beginning we struggled to get him poo and wee on the street. By using positive reinforcement we managed to change some of his wayward conducts into good deeds.
His nature is true and pure, unique and special. Being a mongrel, Sucre could easily have ended up as a stray dog. Luckily, he forms an integral part of our inseparable family and we are proud of it. More than living a dog’s life, since that summer of 2010 we are in seventh heaven.
Beniatjar, Valencia. Sunday afternoon.
Lolling around on the Calvary, the sun glaring right in my eyes, I feel rejuvenated. Our body has been designed to overcome difficulties. The brain can providentially forget those trifling fears that sometimes are able to keep us sleepless, staring up at our bedroom ceiling all night long.
Sucre is lying on a stone bench by me, quiet and peaceful. Wagging his tail occasionally as a sign of happiness. Aware of the companionable silence, who knows? No other human being around to talk to, I can free my mind.
There is no single niggling worry at the back of my head. I can now do my own thing. Sometimes a bit of self-awareness and selfishness is not harmful. The end justifies the means.