A world of contrasts...I never understand
Sandhya Sreejith | 22 Sep 2006

You never know whether a caged bird is more happier than one that is free to fly...........

My approach to freedom changed the moment I decided to bring seven love birds home. Since then, some strikingly contrasting thoughts have incessantly haunted me..
Its ironic some birds would just not leave their cages or allow anyone to mess with their territory. Where as, we humans constantly discuss & debate on how birds should be let free in the wild.
Caged birds love to return to their cages, even if it is open 24 hours not just to peck on grains but also to play and find some solace in solitude. They do not have to fly hundreds of miles in search of a single morsel of meal. Food, shelter, toys are all at their beck and call.  The scare of facing a predator or the hurried flight to find a shelter when the vagaries of nature attack them is completely alien to them. Caged birds live longer; have a vet to check on them the moment their droppings loosen or at the slightest change in their screeching sound. They sing and yell out their owners names when they see them from afar. Does singing not indicate happiness? Does flying and perching on their owner’s shoulder not indicate how rejoiced it is to see the owner back?
I hear the world say - one would certainly live longer, if one were confined within four walls, fed and taken care of without being exposed to the dangers of life. How many of us would forsake a free and adventurous life for a lengthier life without freedom??
My conscience cries out to caged birds being freed to the potential harm we are doing them. Does setting a bird free in the wild not doom it to an early demise because they have never learned the skills to survive in the wild? Will not that bird, with whom we had the best intentions, surely perish from its natural predators? Of course, the bird can learn to fly, flee and fight as it would have from infancy but have we not already doomed it to captivity?
A custom prevalent in most of the developing countries is that of freeing birds from their cages by humans. They believe that one’s sadness and illness flee away with the flight of the birds through the noble gesture of paying to set them free, sometimes with a kiss or a prayer. 
It’s indeed ironic that the freed ones love to come back to the one who had put a price tag on them, gladly and merrily to be caged and freed again.
Ponder this, the ones who augment the theory of letting the birds free are the ones who are responsible for them being caged. Stop buying and paying for the caged birds, would someone cage them at all?
I will find my answers once my birds start speaking for themselves or I start understanding their incessant pitter patters, till then I have to learn to survive with my ever cribbing conscience.