Lessons From A Dung Beetle

We see dung beetles often on our walks across the crunchy soil that passes for roadways in our little village. I confess I have an affinity for them. It is a kind of admiration, really. I don’t feel as strongly about them as I do turtles but I do admire them. Why?

Because dung beetles have chosen to take the worlds waste and make it a treasure and, what is more, they work so very hard at harvesting this treasure. They form it into little balls, and then bigger balls, and then they push it who knows how far to get where they want to go with it. Dung beetles have a focus and purpose that is second only to John Wick’s.

I snapped this video last week.

There are at least three lessons here, which, if elongated, would make an excellent self-help kind of book.

  1. Just because someone else doesn’t want it, doesn’t mean it is not right for you.
  2. If you keep rolling, your treasure will get bigger.
  3. Everything has a purpose, even if you don’t understand it.
  4. Make certain to protect the little things because they are doing your dirty work.

See how I made that four. I think if I took a morning it would be easy to develop a few more thoughts. I’m serious, there are probably ten chapters that could be written on the life lessons from dung beetles, including quotations from Confucius, Gandhi, C.S. Lewis, Benjamin Franklin, and Jesus. Probably one two good quotes from Steve Jobs. Then we could spend a whole chapter on work production in the United States and the critical need now and in the future for welders, plumbers, electricians, and roofers. EVERYBODY CAN’T WRITE COMPUTER CODE — SOMEONE HAS TO BUILD THE HOUSES!

Oh, and there has to be one chapter on life cycles — how eventually we all turn into food and dung for other beasties. Indeed, the whole world is a teacher.

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