A few companions to my piece “The Martyrs” on rats and anthropocentrism.
“I told my mother, maybe twice, about the the Karni Mata temple in India, where people worship over 20,000 black rats, revering after traveling long distances to share food with our tiny relatives. The Hindi people who come here believe the rats came about in different manners, yet they all agree on one ting. The rats are humans reincarnated. People share milk with them, are honored to bite food nibbled by hungry teeth, grazed by long whiskers. If a rat is killed, it must be replaced with one of solid silver. Here, they have worth.”