Zombie Rats Perhaps?

3 Feb

I recently acquired a new amazing friend.  She’s a christian.  She keeps a bible on her at all times and when she needs some courage she reads it.  I would sometimes hear her looking up quotes from it to describe her feelings.

One day we were talking about what religion means to us personally and she said something so honest and beautiful that I was truly taken aback by it.

She said “I strive to be more like Jesus.”

I don’t want to be like the man described here

I don’t want to be a part of a church that won’t allow women to lead a congregation or that periodically rapes little boys.

But I do want to be like someone who tells you to turn the other cheek to violence.  Who tells you to absolve yourself of regret and guilt through honesty and apologies.

In a simple experiment, researchers at the University of Chicago sought to find out whether a rat would release a fellow rat from an unpleasantly restrictive cage if it could. The answer was yes.

The free rat, occasionally hearing distress calls from its compatriot, learned to open the cage and did so with greater efficiency over time. It would release the other animal even if there wasn’t the payoff of a reunion with it. Astonishingly, if given access to a small hoard of chocolate chips, the free rat would usually save at least one treat for the captive — which is a lot to expect of a rat.

The researchers came to the unavoidable conclusion that what they were seeing was empathy — and apparently selfless behavior driven by that mental state.

“A New Model of Empathy: The Rat” by David Brown, Washington Post

She can strive every day to be Jesus-like.  I strive every day to be better than a rat.

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