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 Most of the world's population believes that having a sense of self, of own pain and pleasure, is the exclusive privilege of humans. This belief instills a feeling of “superiority”, that makes it acceptable to mistreat animals in the most cruel and despicable ways.

But how conscious is a three-month-old fetus? A one-year-old infant? A senile adult or one with severe brain damage? Is it not so that during a day we can go for long moments without a sense of self, of past and present, without real consciousness?

Undoubtedly, what we consider human can be observed experiencing quite different forms of consciousness, and some may be far from what we tend to consider as conscious.

We protect the human; we exalt it and we attribute it the quality of sacredness. But we might also ask: How sacred is a harmful psychopath, a condition unique to mankind?

We rush to control invasive species, but we are the most invasive and destructive plague on the planet.

Are we really so privileged, that in the whole animal kingdom life is only aware of itself through us, humans?

Life in all its vastness requires some form of consciousness for its survival impulses and strategies.

Fortunately, more and more people are arriving to the following conclusion: We share life and consciousness with the species that accompany us on this journey through the infinite grandeur of the universe.

We owe respect to our fellow travelers.

Rubén Palma

Planet Zabor is a science fiction comic series

about animal consciousness and sentience.


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