They walk further. The air is filled with death. In front of them lies a pond, which is mostly mud now with a small amount of water in the center.
Just a month ago, a beautiful pond existed, filled with life and water. Now, the sun shimmers on the cesspool and glows on the floating bodies of dead fish. The whole pond eerily glistens with their silvery carcasses.
Logan shudders at the sight. Then, he hears splashing in front of him. A large fish, whose eyes seem to look directly at Logan, is encased in mud madly struggles, gasping for air. It desperately attempts to breathe in the stagnant remnants of its watery abode. Suffocating, it slowly is dying. As Logan surveys the pool, he realizes that the struggle for survival is not only with this one fish but is common to the entire pond. Every living fish struggles for oxygen in the still, muddy pool. How will they survive? Their companions have lost the contest and their corpses float as reminders of how close death is to life.
Now, Logan feels a sense of overpowering empathy in his heart. In an instant, he connects to the struggle of the fish. He can feel its life ebbing away just as his own life had lost its vitality. Sensing its pain and loneliness, which are no different than his own, he gently touches the fish that is now still. In his mind, he can hear its heartbeat slowing, slowing and then stopping until the silence of the now becomes deafening. The fish gave up its struggle and in time it accepts the inevitable, death; then the struggle ends as its consciousness, vitality is finished. The circle of its life is completed. He had accompanied the creature in its final journey. He felt at one with the creature as his awareness expanded, as tenderness filled his heart. He is now filled with sorrow and resolutely asks himself: How can I rescue the remaining creatures from dying in this agony?
He feels a warm hand on his shoulder, which makes him shudder and then relax.
“Logan, you showed compassion for it. You accompanied it. There is beauty in comforting the dying,” Chandra consoles,…