It doesn’t matter if you are not into Christianity, Judaism, or any of the other religions out there, you should do yourself a favor and at least read Proverbs from the Hebrew Bible. Solomon is definitely on his game here. There is so much wisdom there about life and how we function as humans. It’s timeless and if we pay attention to the words, we can see a lot of the things we encounter in life before they’re coming. Sure, it gets annoying sometimes because a lot of us aren’t wisdom seekers, which frustrates those of us who are, but Proverbs even has something to say about that.
“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But he who heeds counsel is wise.”
But the inspiration for this post comes from one of the awesomest observations I ever read. It shows that nature itself is a great teacher and that God has placed wisdom in all that is around us if we would only open our eyes. It goes like this:
As a dog returns to his own vomit so a fool repeats his folly. (Proverbs 26:11)
The first time I read that passage it did not make sense. I had to have been about thirteen and I did not know what folly was. Plus I had no idea what it meant about a dog returning to its vomit. Then my mom got us two dogs and I learned. It was probably the sickest thing I had ever seen at the time. Whatever my dog ate did not agree with him. He had this crazy look on his face and started making some gargling sounds. The next thing you know he upchucked all over the floor in front of him. If that wasn’t gross enough, as I was walking away to go get something to clean it up, I heard some weird whimpering sounds. I turned around to see the vomit moving! No joke. The vomit was moving. It was alive. I could not believe what I was seeing. My brother saw it and completely flipped out. We went up to it to get a closer look and realized that the creature was a tiny new-born puppy. We had heard a rumor that our dog had gotten another dog pregnant. I guess the rumors were true and our dog ate some of the evidence. It was truly disgusting. Our dog had eaten one of his own kids and puked it up.
I’ll never forget my brother’s reaction to this realization. He wanted to get rid of our dog, but I told him I thought that some animals ate their young if they knew it was not likely to survive. It was some kind of instinct. He still was disturbed by it, but decided to just clean up the mess and leave that to nature’s mysteries. But none of this was what brought Proverbs into clarity. What really got me was that by the time we got back to the spot with stuff to clean it up, the dog had started to eat its own puke–puppy and all. Holy crap! Now that was sick. Then it hit me. ” As a dog returns to his own vomit so a fool repeats his folly.” The dog went back to eat the very thing that was making it sick. Obviously that puppy was not agreeing with the dog’s system, but he went right back to it. Can you relate to that?
How many times have you eaten your own puke? I know. It sounds disgusting, but most of us do it all of the time. We stay in relationships that make us sick. We stay at jobs that suck the life out of us. We run our mouths to the same people that we know tell all of our business. We keep buying things we can’t afford in our present circumstances. We cry that we want change and yet we do the same things that we always do. And every time we do that we are eating our own puke just like my puppy eating dog. In my summation, we eat our own puke because we hate being wrong. We do things that are harmful to us, but our ego tells us that could not have possibly made a mistake. “I know it is making me sick, but let me just try it again to make sure. Forget that it looks like a chewed up hot garbage mess,it’s all going to the same place.” Eventually we get used to it. Then we get addicted to it. And then like the dog, eating puke is just instinctual. The dog probably thought, “Why waste a perfectly good meal. Eating it seemed like a good idea at the time. Maybe it will taste just as good the second time around.” Probably not, but it seems that’s how we think.
When I witnessed that bit of nature unfold, I tripped out. I couldn’t believe that was in the Bible. I started trying to tell people that they needed to get up on that Bible, because it knew what was up. Of course not many people wanted to hear a thirteen year old’s puppy puke pontification. But I got on it and found that there was so much wisdom about what’s up with our insane selves. I read all of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes and started looking at the world for clues like the puppy puke to figure out how to avoid some of the junk we get caught up in. I’m not trying to sell you or anyone on religion, but I am trying to let you know that there are some ways to skip learning the hard way. If you’ve ever “vurped” (vomit burp), you know that it is nasty. You would never do it on purpose. So why eat the puke of your emotional and spiritual life if you can avoid it. If you ate at a restaurant and it gave you food poisoning, how quickly would you rush back to eat there? I think I made my point.
Said with all the love I have to give.