Take a Walk in a Pig’s Shoes

pigWe were nearing the end of our day in the ITWK office when we suddenly
heard a kerfuffle down the hall. Hoping to catch some juicy gossip, I
mean, out of concern for what was going on, we peeked our heads out
and saw a volunteer holding a bag of ice to their head. Jackpot! We
rushed over to get the story, ahem, um, rushed to their aid that is. What
was uncovered was beyond anything that our imaginations could ever
conjure! During an innocent walk through the campground, the volunteer
stated that they were suddenly pelted with dozens of lava rocks that
seemed to rain down on them from above. WT Fudge?? Jackpot indeed!
We secured some hardhats and headed to the campsite to investigate,
stealthily creeping through the paved jungle only to discover a disturbing
scene. The baby pigs and teenage mom were there, scratching their
bums on the sides of tents, digging up the earth with their noses,
destroying the grass and pooping on the paths unabashedly. And then we
saw it, just as the volunteer had described. Fist-fulls of lava rocks were
raining down beside the pigs. Mind you, the pigs weren’t bothered at all
from the commotion, but where were they coming from and why? The
pig-2culprit was soon discovered hiding in the bushes. It was another volunteer, who we have agreed to only refer to as ‘Jr.’ (to save them further persecution from the community for their shamed behavior). When
questioned, ‘Jr.’ cried out “I’m fed up with the pigs! They’re always around my campsite, using it as if they own the place, ruining the lawn, using my tent as a butt scratcher (among other parts), doing whatever they want! I can’t take it anymore! They aren’t afraid of me, or anyone anymore, so all I could think to do was to pelt them away!” We must admit that at this point ‘Jr.’ was looking a bit like a mad scientist, and we wondered how long it had been since they had slept (or last taken their meds). But in the spirit of Aloha, we held space for them for a few moments before chastising their abhorrent behavior. For part of the experience of living in nature is to live peacefully with nature. So instead of utilizing negative means of resolution, we told ‘Jr.’ we’d help find peaceful resolutions for them. We sought the help of a local Punatic who is known in the community as the ‘pig whisperer’. He suggested to see the world from the pig’s perspective. “Take a walk in their shoes” he sagely stated. We absorbed these wise words while sipping on some questionably flavored tea with him. And out of that strange, partly hallucinogenic experience with the pig whisperer, we came up with some peaceful alternatives to dealing with our obstinate piglets.

Tip #1: Invite the pigs over for some tea and biscuits and have a gentle
chat about boundaries
Tip #2: Get on their level (literally) and introduce yourself while giving the
pigs compliments before launching in a conversation about manners and
respecting space
Tip #3: Take a walk through the unkempt jungle and see how hard it
really is to find items on your level to scratch on. Ain’t so easy, is it?
Sometimes seeing things from another’s perspective is just the thing
that’s needed to have a little bit more compassion for them and to be able
to deal with situations in peaceful ways.


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