Relative Life

Wednesday, March 6, 2019


I saved a worm recently.  I know, it's no big deal.  Most people don't care and many others find the very thought of worms disgusting.  Does a worm have any value anyway?  When I really think about it, I may not have actually saved the worm's life; I may have just prolonged it.  I'll never know, because I'm never going to see that little worm again.  Would I even recognize it if I did?

I was taking my afternoon walk, listening to music through my headphones.  On the sidewalk, I saw some movement in front of me.  It was a little worm, wriggling on the hot cement.  Clearly, it had no chance to survive.  It was on it's way to being cooked alive.  I stopped, quickly surveyed the situation and came to a decision.  I grabbed a small leaf on the ground, scooped up the worm and placed in on the grass, where it began to slither down (presumably) to the dirt.  I can almost imagine the cooling sensation of the blades of grass that the worm might have felt if it has any semblance of consciousness.

It's not the kind of thing that I would bother to tell anybody.  It's just a worm - for crying out loud.  The karmic repercussions can't amount to much, if those kind of things are based on gross weight.  I only mention it here because as I have grown older, I have a higher regard for life, no matter where it presents itself.  After all, can anyone deny that the spark of life necessary for humans is any different than the miracle of life for any other living organism?   No matter how small, no matter what feelings or fears one might have for snakes, ants or snails - life is still a random gift that is rarer than most people would care to admit. 

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