Thursday, September 15, 2016

Feral Hearts


I know a roaring lion in a zoo is not a feral animal, it is actually quite the opposite. It is a wild animal that has been caged, but it is so rare that the lion at the zoo roars that I had to capture the moment.

Feral hearts. There are some people who want to be domesticated. They long to be in a home or a cage where they are cared for, fed, every need met and for them. That is life and comfort and good and that is fine. That seems to be the expectation we have for everyone.

But there is the feral heart. They tried to live in that home and fit that mold, but they could not. Their hearts longed for the wild, the woods, the danger, the passion, and the freedom. The idea of a home or a zoo or any such thing is suffocating.

I remember one time I was in the woods for a long weekend with some friends. It was in Montgomery Bell State Park in Tennessee. We had rented a villa. There was a feral cat that would hang out outside. We left a plate of food out for him every day. He would come, spend time with us and even allow us to pet him. We named him Hummus the cat....cuz he could not get enough hummus. He was not a stray. He was feral. He belonged in the woods and were we to even try to bring him into a house, he would have felt the walls as a prison if he were not allowed the freedom of the forest. But he gave us the gift of his company, his purring, his love. We got to share life without ownership or rules.

That is what a feral heart is. It is independent. It knows what it is and what it needs and it needs to be free. If a feral heart comes into your life, you spend time together because the heart is drawn to you. The heart wants to be with you, but you must never try to control the heart, domesticate it, restrict it.

Sometimes, a feral heart will desire a home. Not domestication, but shared existence with willful interdependance and love without conditions.

If you are a feral heart. Others may want to be with you and they only understand the domesticated existence. They have to understand that is not your heart and if you were to become that, your heart and the you they were attracted to would become less and even if you were to become what they want, you would be less true to you and they would never feel what they felt when they were drawn to you and you would be domesticated, but not loved. They do not understand it is your feral nature that they fell for and to domesticate you, they would stop loving..for they never loved you. Not truly. They never understood.

If you ever meet a feral heart and it wants to stay with you.....to spend time with you. Know you have a gift. The gift of willful presence. Never dare to contain it, control it, or own it. That will hurt the heart and we must never do harm.

Feral hearts are the most real of us all. If a feral heart says it loves you, it means it.

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