Lugh and I took a walk this afternoon in the beautiful 50° sunshine, and despite my attempts at an unbroken power-walk, he stopped to smell his first spring flowers: crocuses and snowdrops. He has a scab on his nose and lip from an altercation with a pit bull friend who's suddenly grown bigger than him yet plays as aggressively as ever. The sore is taking a long time to heal because he uses his nose so much that the scab keeps coming off. Adonis and I follow him around with a pot of herbal healing salve, trying to dab some on his nose when we can. This afternoon Adonis asked me if I thought Lugh was mad at us for allowing him to get hurt. I replied that, first, Lugh doesn't know he's hurt - he's not in pain. Second, dogs can't hold grudges. They live in the present. They don't have a consciousness that allows them to spin stories about past harms - "that damn puppy, who does she think she is, I can't believe my dad didn't intervene sooner, he's so slow" - thus keeping the harms, and the emotions evoked by them, fresh and alive. That's why dogs can risk love, again and again, with an open heart, no matter how badly they've been treated in the past.
Here ends the day's dharma lesson.