As we stand on the abyss of destroying our planet, we continue as before, with hunger abounding with the ones who came after trying to catch up with the ones who came before.
We see it as our right to restructure the biosphere.
Albert Schweitzer placed our situation in a context worthy of further exploration:
“The world-view of reverence for life follows the world as it is. And the world means the horrible in the glorious, the meaningless in the full of meaning, the sorrowful in the joyful.”
The only thing that is unchanged is our relentless and unchanging mentality, retaining the same order, the same system, entrenched in our unworkable, distorted positions. How many are open to other responses, other solutions, other ways of life that respect the planet?
Here’s an example of the catastrophic system we feed, support and endorse:
Powerheads decide to indulge their greed and expand their empires built on the hard work and suffering of others. Whilst thousands starve to death in dire poverty, Commonwealth Bank (Australia) shareholders must decide whether to pay Chief Executive, Ian Narev $4.7 million in shares as a bonus incentive scheme to add to his $2.6 million yearly salary and $5.55 million in cash and bonuses previously paid. (*As reported in The West Australian, October 3, 2014)
Here on our majestic Earth, we have decided to forget science, forget logic, forget justice, forget common-sense, and forget the basic fundamental of looking after our domain. Instead we have been engulfed by relentless materialism, ravenous desire and suicidal self-perpetuating entitlement. Henry Thoreau add to this frame of reference: “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil, to one who is striking at the root.”
Based on a philosophy that says that Earth’s resources are owned by Governments and Corporations and freely available to be exploited for profit, our insatiable greed for more and more things and more and more growth and development continues.
That has put us on the edge of a sixth great wave of extinction. The previous five mass extinctions have each time destroyed between 50-97% of Earth’s species. This is the first time it is one of the planet’s own species (human beings) that is causing the ultimate genocide. One of the strangest and least comprehensible aspects to this grand cosmic game we’re playing as little Gods (or demons) of planet Earth, is to put ourselves at risk of extinction.
“The harsh reality is that no war, no revolution, no peril in all of history measures up in importance to the threat of continued environmental deterioration.” ~ Senator Gaylord Nelson
The Living Planet report compiled by the WWF reported that the number of vertebrates—mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish—on Earth, has fallen by more than half since 1970.
Marine and terrestrial creatures have each slumped 39%, freshwater creatures 76%. There are 52% fewer vertebrates alive now compared to the 1970’s.
Why are we doing this to ourselves—and is it too late to turn back?
Our human societies may function rationally and technologically, yet have its origins within a dream vision. As Thomas Berry writes, “what we seem unwilling or unable to recognize is that our entire modern world is itself inspired not by any rational process, but by a distorted dream experience, perhaps the most powerful dream that has ever taken possession of human imagination.”
If we are relying on politicians to lead, then we are looking in the wrong place. Politicians are trying to keep a failing system afloat, promoting the old agenda, and trying to pretend everything is hunky-dory.
The grand political strategy of most democracies is essentially to pit two parties against each other, much-hyped up by the media, whilst intrinsically little changes—the status quo ensures permanence. Those in power look for solutions in the places that caused the original problems, and seek to reform and restructure an antiquated economic and political model.
Politics feeds our need for entertainment. Our news stories are filled with political intrigues and are always just another form of distraction, especially come election-time. The electioneering is just a pretense for the strategy of “divide and conquer.” Really, the entire system is suicidal and instead of revising it, it requires a complete and major restructuring. I don’t really care if you are “Democrat” or “Republican”—I just care about solutions and policies. Why do we continue the idiocy of this so-called democracy?
Whether the power structures are Democrat or Republican, sleepwalking political parties just appear wearing masks at the ball. It is all so insidious and such a waste of energy to entertain this farcical illusion of democracy. The corporate-owned media aim to keep the entertainment going, banking on people’s natural naivety and innocence.
“To put is still more plainly: the desire for security and the feeling of insecurity are the same thing. To hold your breath is to lose your breath. A society based on the quest for security is nothing but a breath-retention contest in which everyone is as taut as a drum and as purple as a beet.” ~ Alan Watts
Why is there such abundant apathy, insensitivity and resignation in the face of such significant challenges and illness within the planetary system, within the nature of all our systems (not just the environmental is failing)?
Has the world-ego ever been more involved in such passivity?
What we can do?
I am seeking partners to co-create a new reality.
The first step is to acknowledge there is a problem (many, especially our media and political leaders, are still in denial). The second step is being willing to make the change.
When we can let go of what we are, we may reveal that which has been hidden, and become that possibility which is majestic.
We must safeguard our long-term supply of natural resources and protection of the environment. Every dollar spent is casting a vote, a political statement of intent and responsibility about how you wish the world to be. Our elected leaders must lead us into a new age, or be replaced by those willing to let go of the past. Rather the chaos of freedom, than the pretence that the old ways work. A new way is coming.
We need leaders who speak the truth. Can you find them? I can’t! We must each become leaders in our own right.
Why we don’t care about the environment even though we care about our environment; or, how to save the world without really trying.
Author: David G. Arenson
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Lua Ahmed/Flickr
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