Cats as Spiritual Practice

Happy Solstice Friends, from my family to yours!

My brood has expanded considerably in the past few months and I’m now Mom to five cats.

Two of the strays I’ve been caring for are making the transition to becoming indoor cats. Don’t let their cuteness fool you. They are terrorists in disguise with boundless energy. They’re just six months old today, and are intent on destroying everything in the house.

Welcome Penelope and Cleopatra — the two kittens.

Cats

These kittens are basically wild animals, and they require a lot of patience and attention. They attack, scratch and bite, eat inedible objects and the house plants, scale the cabinets and hang from the light fixtures, chew on electrical cords and my fingers, walk on the keyboard, and climb all over me while I’m trying to meditate or do yoga. Some days it seems like the only word I say is “NO.”

Two weeks ago Penelope ingested broken shards of glass and last week Cleopatra had a very bad virus. This week Penelope has the virus. Never a dull moment with these two around. There are so many hazards for inquisitive minds, and I worry about them.

The mom cat, Gwyneth, had two litters of kittens before I could get her owner’s permission to have her and all four kittens neutered and spayed. The third kitten continues to live next door, and Gwyneth and her oldest kitten, Bella, prefer being outside in the yard. They come inside each day to be fed, and they stay in when it’s raining or cold.

Here’s Gwyneth and Bella — the two outdoor cats.

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Cats

My 16-year-old is a bit shell-shocked with this kitten invasion of her territory, but she’s reluctantly getting used to it.

Here’s Luci — my precious 16-year-old cat.

Cats

Being Mom to five cats, one elderly and four under the age of two, is nearly a full-time job, but it also has its rewards. In the evening when I lay on the couch the two little ones pile on top of me with their warm furry bodies and purr in content. It’s only when they’re sleeping that they seem like sweet little angels!

Living with cats is an ongoing spiritual practice of letting go. Letting go of having a perfect house. Letting go of material objects that they break or otherwise destroy. Letting go of peace and quiet. Letting go of getting anything done. Letting go of the fantasy that I can provide the perfect life for them. And the hardest of all for me, letting go of what happens to them. There is no controlling them, and I’m forced to accept them as they are – good, bad and ugly.

I hope you have a gentle and peaceful holiday season. Thank you for following along. Much love to you, and I’ll see you again in the new year.

In what unexpected ways does spiritual practice show up for you? I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts. You can share them with us in the comments section below.

With love and appreciation,
Cassandra

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2 Comments

  1. Concatulations! What’s a house plant? You didn’t mention constantly tripping over cat toys…so let me know if you need a care package of toys my cats now consider baby toys.

    1. Um, thanks? I’m not sure congratulations are in order. These five are a handful, and Luci is not doing well. I feel like my life has been taken over by cats. I live in a cat sanctuary, and there’s no time for me anymore. But I can’t just let stray cats suffer, and they always always always end up at my house. They have plenty of toys all of which now bore them. Except the laser pointer, of course, but that requires me to operate it. When does it get better?

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