“Whether you think you can or think you can’t—you’re right.” Henry Ford
“A Belief is a Thought You Keep Thinking.”
We can learn a lot from our four-legged friends: unconditional love, forgiveness, infectious joy. Dogs don’t fret over the future or obsess about harms done; the innocence and loyalty of puppyhood carries through to their final days. For some of us, these are natural tendencies; for others it’s a work in progress.
I researched the Chihuahua breed before adopting. Experts say they that they’re yappy, territorial, and nippy—a mighty personality in a miniature body. But Roxane didn’t fit the criteria. Pensive and submissive, all was well in her world with a friendly face and warm body to cuddle up to. Basia was the opposite. Weighing less than two pounds, she braved each day with the courage of a natural-born warrior. Even though she was the newest addition, she staked her claim and made it known that she would be the pack leader.
Nature or Nurture
Whether we are born a certain way—the random result of genetics—or a product of our environment is a longstanding debate between scientists and sociologists. Although each side has their own theory, no definite conclusions can be drawn.
Most of us agree that hair colour, eye colour, and height are genetically predetermined. And most can agree that language and facial expressions are adopted from our environment. But the line is less clear when it comes to personality, intelligence, or talent, for example.
Are We Just Another Chihuahua?
So what separates us from the animal kingdom? Are we hardwired at birth to shrink in the face of opportunity or to live large, stand tall, and rise to any occasion?
To be born into the Western world is to be born into the land of opportunity. Clean air, running water, and fresh food: these freedoms are the foundation upon which dreams are built. Happiness is our birthright. Unlike our canine companions, we can observe, reflect, and ultimately choose who and how we wish to be. Like two sides of the same coin, fear or faith, love or hate, it is nothing more than a choice that we make.
What do you choose?