"When my children are settled, I am going to retire and devote more time to my meditation. Every time you meditate, you get a little further from the world. You become more and more like the lotus, which grows in the water, but never touches the water."
"So what’s the benefit of withdrawing from the world?"
"Meditation is like a glass of juice. I can describe the glass of juice to you. But you’re not going to know the glass of juice until you taste it."
Sand mandala at Thikse Monastery, Ladakh, India. Samsara (2011)
let throw my 2 cents in there but actually the whole “fish do (or do not) feel pain” is still an ongoing debate among scientists. A study published in 2012 showed that fish do not have the neuro-physiological capacity for a conscious awareness of pain.
So pain is a twofold experience. First, you have the neurobiological process of our nerves communicating with the brain. Second, there’s the emotional response to pain that varies from person to person. Pain research distinguishes between a conscious awareness of pain and an unconscious processing of impulses through nociception, the latter of which can also lead to complex hormonal reactions, behavioural responses as well as to learning avoidance reactions.
Nociceptor nerve cells in our bodies deliver that initial pain-related communiqué along a route through the central nervous system to the brain. Research has shown that other mammals, birds and fish also have nociceptors. The presence of those nerve cells implies that fish have the sensory capability to recognize when something is harming their bodies. Hence, fish can experience the neurological pain process.
Overall, the scientific consensus is that fish have the anatomical requirements to demonstrate neurophysiologic and behavioral reactions to pain as a means of survival.
One of the primary arguments against fish having a sense of pain is that their brains lack the structural elements, namely the neocortex, necessary for it. Without that, they cannot be aware of the pain as they are experiencing it. There is little evidence that exists to suggest that the fish also react emotionally to pain like humans. The physiological prerequisites for a conscious experience of pain are hardly developed in fish.
So basically fish can sense the pain and remember not to get caught in nets later on for example (study here) but they do not experience it emotionally like we humans do. It’s tricky though because basically, it is very difficult to deduct underlying emotional states based on behavioral responses, especially based on human standards of pain.
So really the on-going dilemma right now is that fish either have absolutely no awareness of pain in human terms or they react completely differently to pain. By and large, it is absolutely not advisable to interpret the behaviour of fish from a human perspective, and it is impossible to use the “they act like they are in pain so they must feel pain” argument.
Coldplay’s O/Ghost Stories concept art
So fly on
Maybe one day I’ll fly next to you
Don’t Let me Down - Paolo Nutini (The Beatles cover)
It’s a love that lasts forever☆
It’s a love that has no past☆
“My mother used to say to me, ‘You can’t eat beauty, it doesn’t feed you.’ And these words played and bothered me, I didn’t really understand them until finally I realized that beauty was not a thing that I could acquire or consume. It was something that I just had to be. And what my mother meant by saying that you can’t eat beauty is that you can’t rely on beauty to sustain you. What actually sustains us, what is fundamentally beautiful is compassion for yourself and those around you. That kind of beauty inflames the heart and enchants the soul.”
—Lupita Nyong’o (via alienpunker)