Written by Ali Raja’i
Translated by Sayyad Hassan Naqavi
In the story of Shelby and Moore, Saadi speaks about the importance of the life of an ant for the famous mystic, and then quotes that famous verse from Ferdowsi: “Miyazar Moore who is its seed”.
Our literature and culture are full of such wisdoms, for example, Abu al-‘Ala al-Mu’ari also condemns the anxiety and fear of animals in a short poem. But the question is, what is the place of not oppressing animals and the importance of their lives in the upbringing of humans, especially children?
Annoying animals and human beings have important similarities: In both cases, the victims are living beings who feel pain and anxiety. From a criminological point of view, cruelty to animals can be a sign of subsequent criminal behavior in human society. This will also be doubly important for children whose personalities are developing. According to research, a child’s aggressive and abnormal behavior toward animals may lead to further violence, and this behavior is considered an important form of antisocial behavior.
Concerns about this are not unreasonable, as many studies have found a direct link between cruelty to animals and the formation of high-risk criminals. For example, according to Robert Wrestler, who created a profile of serial killers for the FBI, “Serial killings often begin with the killing and torture of animals as children.” And history is full of repetitions of this cycle of turning children into future criminals. In the internal case of this research, examples of serial and violent criminals have also admitted to animal abuse in childhood, as one of the most familiar of them had known the secret of his composure during crimes, the experience of animal abuse.
But the question is, what will be the role of parents and educational environments for the child in shaping his proper behavior with other living beings?
The first and most important point is to remember that parents, teachers and other adults will be his first and most effective role models. The child must see and feel kindness in animals in their behavior.
Talk to the child about the animals alive and feeling. Creating a space for discourse here will also be very important. The child must know that, according to scientific observations, every living thing understands suffering, so he must treat them in such a way that he likes to be treated himself. In conversations, it should be emphasized that land is a trust in our lives and we should take care of nature and animals.
Read him stories about animal life and strengthen his love. As stated, our literature is not devoid of these anecdotes. Also, familiarize him with the animals’ lives, lifestyles, and behaviors, and teach them possible ways to deal with non-domestic animals.
Take care of the animals and take care of them. For example, ask him to sow seeds regularly for the birds, or in the summer to consider a water container for the animals to drink and to follow up responsibly.
Teach your children not to eat or buy products that have been tested or tested on animals. Teach them to support animals and organizations that work to save animals and to use products that no animal has suffered to produce. Do this yourself so that the scope of these points is not reduced to words and reminders.
Even the smallest behaviors of a child in dealing with animals are important. Some children naturally use gentle touching on animals and some grasp and pinch. Educate children and ask them not to harass animals, to caress hairy animals in the direction of their hair growth, and to avoid touching their sensitive points or pulling or tapping them.
For animals, show the animals in their environment without disturbing your children. Zoos are places of captivity and suffering for animals that are not the right way to respond to a child’s curious mind.
Finally, we must know that these teachings must be presented to the child from the first days of his birth in order to be embedded in his soul and psyche. It is important to note once again that, above all, our behavior affects us, and if it is correct, it will affect the behavior of others.