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The Soul of All Living Creatures: What Animals Can Teach Us About Being Human (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 8. Juli 2014

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“Intriguing... a winning work for all those whose lives have been deepened and enriched by soulful contact with their pets and other animals.” Spirituality and Practice

“This book is a thoroughly engaging and thoughtful consideration of the ways in which humans can benefit from closer attention to the ways of animals.” Bark magazine

“Dr. Virga explores our profound connection to animals–from dogs and cats to whales and wolves. Drawing on decades of practice, he demonstrates how by attempting to perceive the world from the perspective of animals, we can enrich our own appreciation of life, improve our relationships and communication, re-examine our values and deepen our spirituality.” Animal Wellness magazine

“Enjoyable and electrifying reading.” The Inquisitive Mind

“Virga discerningly illuminates basic traits shared by both humans and animals and makes animal behavior meaningful, relevant, and easy to understand. Insightful and eloquent, The Soul of All Living Creatures offers an intimate journey into the lives of our fellow creatures and a thought-provoking promise of what we can learn from spending time with them.” The Edge

“Part animal primer, part detective tale, part existential treatise, veterinary behavioral medicine expert Vint Virga's new book takes us in the minds and motivations of our four-legged friends, and reveals what their actions can show us about ourselves (if we stop to pay attention) ... just as apt for the Personal Growth as the Nature section of the bookstore.” Animal Sheltering

The Soul of All Living Creatures is an inspiring, joyful, uplifting account of the magical bonds between humans and the earth’s creatures.  This book conveys a profound message: We are part of a larger web of life that we must honor, or risk grave consequences.  Thank you, Dr. Virga, for reminding us of this crucial fact.”
Larry Dossey, MD, author of Reinventing Medicine and One Mind

“Many books celebrate our connection with animals, but the best of them bring that connection to life in a way that truly changes how we see ourselves. Vint Virga's understanding of animals is deep and hard-won, and this haunting, enormously insightful book reflects that on every page.” —Ptolemy Tompkins, author of The Divine Life of Animals

“A beautiful, wise, and inspiring book that will greatly enrich your relationship with all the animals in your life, including the human ones.” —John Robbins, author of The Food Revolution and Diet For A New America

“In his passionate and convincing book, Dr. Virga has taken our understanding of animals a great step further. He helps us see that they are not like us, they are very different, and through powerful and affecting anecdotes with a wide range of species, he shows us what we can learn from them, from acceptance to communication to spirituality. An important and overdue book, beautifully rendered and valuable for anyone who loves animals.” —Jon Katz, author of Dancing Dogs

“Virga’s book is a captivating collection of stories that demonstrate the deep connections possible between humans and nonhumans.  Few veterinarians have had the range of his experience, and the descriptions of how he learns to relate to the many different species in his care are truly enlightening.” —Irene Pepperberg, author of Alex & Me

The Soul of All Living Creatures: What Animals Can Teach Us About Being Human by noted veterinarian and animal behaviorist Dr. Vint Virga profoundly delivers on what the title promises. His voice is both intimate and informative, and his collection of stories reads more like a compelling novel than an anecdotal collection. This book takes the reader from smiles to laughter to empathy and tears, then ultimately to a clear perception of how understanding animals can make us better human beings. This is a must-read not only for animal lovers but also for those looking to create a life of compassion for ourselves and others.” —Nancy Ellis-Bell, author of The Parrot Who Thought She Was a Dog and co-author of A Man For All Species

“An insightful affirmation of our love of animals.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Animal lovers will appreciate this tribute to the connection between humans and animals.” —Booklist

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

DR. VINT VIRGA is a distinguished practitioner and leader in veterinary behavioral medicine.  He consults nationally to zoos and wildlife parks, private corporations, and professional organizations on the care and well-being of animals and has appeared as featured guest on ABC World News, PBS's Nature, and National Geographic Explorer.

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 133 Rezensionen
47 von 50 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Observations About Animals 12. Juni 2013
Von Rebecca of Amazon - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts ( Was ist das? )
"The Soul of All Living Creatures" is a book about animal observations through the eyes of a vet who deals with various problems and comes up with creative solutions. Vint Virga begins this book with a beautiful story of how he connects with a dog that is traumatized after being hit by a truck. The story brought tears to my eyes.

Then there is the story of a child who overwhelms her favorite kitten with too much affection. Vint Virga has some good ideas about how to calm anxious kitties. Then the stories go on with one about a dog who exhibits obsessive compulsive disorder. Although no hint is given as to how this dog was helped. The chapter does however focus a lot of time on the human brain.

What I noticed most about this lovely book is the creative writing style. Vint Virga really captures every nuance of each experience with various animals including wolves and tigers. He also talks a bit about how zoos prevent animals from going extinct, especially ocelots.

I think if you love animals you will be fascinated by this book. You will get a behind the scenes look at how vets care for animals in zoos, homes and in the wild. The best story in this book is about how a mouse is saved in a rain storm.

~The Rebecca Review
58 von 64 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Musings on Mindfulness 21. Mai 2013
Von Antigone Waslh - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts ( Was ist das? )
A specialist in (animal) behavioral medicine, the author intertwines observations of some of his patients with his thoughts on mindfulness and traits humans and animals share. Each chapter addresses one of the characteristics, ranging from sensitivity to forgiveness. The author posits that humans can learn how to embody those qualities by listening and studying the animals around them.

Although this book covers a lot of ground, the author's philosophical musings failed to move. I was hoping for the level of emotion the author evoked in the introduction, with the story of Pongo, a young dog struck by a car. The animal literally seemed to revive and recover due to the power of love. It spoke volumes about the author, a vet willing to give more than medical treatment and to a dog, whose spirit was drawn by the warmth of human contact. I was touched by the sadness of the depressed and stressed leopards but most of the stories were mundane and not especially memorable. Still there are hints of brilliance when the author grapples with shocking violence of predation and the brutality of slaughterhouses and animal experimentation. But it sinks into bittersweet melancholy.

I am not sure I agree with his zen observations and it is really time to retire some of the old stories , ie 3 blind men and the elephant, the last strawberry before you die, etc. At one point the author suggests that due to the many different breeds of dog, animals are no longer able to communicate as a pack. An evening watching Cesar Milan would certainly dispute that. Some of his conclusions are contradictory and confusing. At one point he states that dogs do not feel guilty but respond expressively to their owners cues. But in another portion, he is impressed by the power of forgiveness exhibited by a Bengal cat.

These are not the bright and heart warming stories of James Herriot. Nor is it as encompassing as When Elephants Weep. And while I wish the author fully addressed the more challenging aspects of animal/human relationships, this book does provide the unique perspective of a man who seeks betterment for all forms of life.
23 von 23 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
The Zen Of The Animals 4. Juli 2013
Von Louis N. Gruber - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts ( Was ist das? )
Humans have always been fascinated with animals and their antics. Author Vint Virga, veterinarian and animal behaviorist, believes there is a deep unity between animals and ourselves, and that we can learn a great deal about ourselves by studying them with open minds and with respect. Dr. Virga has spent many hours observing and studying animals, both at home and at the zoo where he consults. In this short book he uses case studies from his practice to illuminate such profound concepts as Mindfulness, Adaptability, Presence and Forgiveness, and many others. In the course of the book he shares from his vast wealth of clinical experience, reading and study, information about animals and their behaviors we might never have known.

Unfortunately the book is not easy reading. Author Virga writes in long, complicated sentences, and digresses too often into well-worn paths of Buddhist philosophy. Many of the parables he quotes are too well-known and told at too great length. This reviewer would have liked to hear more about the animals themselves, and less of Dr. Virga's speculations about their possible feelings and motivations. Still, there's a lot of value in this book and I'm glad I read it. I recommend it, but if you're looking for short colorful anecdotes about cute animals, you may be disappointed. Reviewed by Louis N. Gruber.
26 von 27 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
The Souls of Animals, The Souls of Humans 9. Juli 2013
Von Just My Op - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Amazingly enough, this book did not make me cry. I expected heartbreaking stories, which I don't enjoy but which seem to come with the territory when reading about animals. There were stories, and there were some which are sad, some which really made me feel for the animals involved, but not break into ugly sobs.

Subtitled "What Animals Can Teach Us About Being Human," this book does that but it also teaches us more about animals, how close they are in emotions to humans, how they react to different situations, how their lives are more complex than the casual observer would ever guess.

One of the passages I could most relate to:

"When I watch others eat, I find it curious how absently most people cut at their steak, tear off a chicken wing, or gnaw at a bone, without a thought about their prey, the abattoir, the life that passed. I don't believe it's done with intention. It's just that meat is removed from its source - a fragment of another being."

Don't let me lead you into thinking this is a book about vegetarianism. It is not. But there are so many observations that I felt when I became a vegetarian that I could really connect to the book and the author.

The author is a consultant to zoos, and this leads to a quandary. Do we really have the right to keeps animals in cages, no matter how glorified, in order to protect the species as a whole? The author seems to think so. I'm not so convinced. One of the saddest stories in the book, the one that almost made me cry, was about a snow leopard so out of her element that her spirit had left her body. No one, animal or human, should have to live like that. And then there was the lonely whale.

The allegories in the book were not as appealing to me. While they did help the author make his point, for me, they didn't add to the book.

This book is about animal behavior but also about humans, about mindfulness, and is a self-help book if one cares to use it as such.

Good reading.

I was given an uncorrected proof for review. The quote above may have changed in the published edition.
15 von 16 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
mehh... 25. Juli 2013
Von Brett Farrell - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts ( Was ist das? )
I chose this book with expectations that would probably not have been very difficult to fulfill. I figured it would be filled with stories about animal behavior and how we can learn from them. This book however is at best mediocre and was a surprising let down. It does contain the aforementioned stories, but some of them go nowhere with no conclusions and there is lots of page filler type of writing and often when the author is trying to paint a literary picture for us, he uses cheap, grocery store checkout line book tricks. The style of the writing is often poor and a chapter will start by leading in one direction but finish in another, which is fine for cheap checkout line books but off-putting here.
There were quite a few instances where the author will go on for a while describing a scene for us but purposely neglecting to tell us what kind of animal we are seeing or giving us the proper clues to figure it out for ourselves so as to leave us in suspense. He opens a few chapters like this but with this kind of book it only makes things confusing and un-relatable.
The author seems like an interesting person, and eventually finds his footing but by the time this book starts to come together, it is more than halfway finished. Altogether this is a pretty hackneyed attempt at a book. I can't speak for everyone, and I hope my review does not seem cruel, but I did not enjoy this book nor did I gain anything from it and I will not keep it in my library.
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