The Language of Animals
Religious Fables, Folklore, Legends, and Stories
From All Creatures Articles Archive

Submitted by: Yuri Klitsenko

I like the Chukchee story about a woman who has learned that Russians teach children to read and write.

The mother send her boy to a distant school, being sure that reading and writing is not possible without understanding language of animals. When her son came back after few years at the Russian school woman discovered that he doesn't understand language of animals.

She was very angry at her son for being lazy at school.  The young man was trying to explain to his mother that Russians don't teach the language of animals.

And what are education and literacy for if school don't help students to understand language the of animals?

I think that this story shows "strange" mentality of "barbarians".

George Wilhelm Steller wrote that pagans of Kamchatka are "obsessed" with the idea of understanding animals.

[Ed. Note]  We don't believe that this desire to understand the language of animal is either strange or obsessive.  The creation story in the Bible clearly shows that humans and the other animals were able to understand one another.  Perhaps most humans really don't want to understand the language of animals, because, if they did, they would hear them cry our and complain about the horrible ways they are being treated.

Yuri Klitsenko is a Russian living in Moscow.  He works for the Russian Orthodox Church.

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