The Steady-State Initiative
moving toward sustainability through economic reform
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2009 Jan 13
The planet Earth, our one and only home is under stress. This stress is a result of many interconnected forces that Dr. Thomas Homer-Dixon, author of The Upside of Down, describes as tectonic forces. Here is a list of some of the important and evident pressure points.
Any one of these stresses by itself presents a challenge and threat to civilization while together they place the survival of humans and other species in jeopardy.
James Lovelock hypothesized in his Gaia theory that Earth itself is a living organism. Perhaps physical turmoil and outbursts such as earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, typhoons, tsunamis, drought, forest fires, etc. are some visible signs of distress.
When humans encounter physical and emotional stress they sometimes display outward and inward signs and symptoms. People develop rashes, acne, cold sores, sweating, hair loss, cold sweat, fever, stomach cramps, ulcers, compromised immune system, illnesses and an urge to go to the bathroom. These may be accompanied by loss of appetite, eating binges, insomnia, depression, withdrawal, disorientation, hyperactivity, moodiness and irrational behaviour.
Perhaps physical outbursts, eruptions and disruptions of the Earth are the planet's way of expressing distress.
There are others who hypothesize that the Earth and all its inhabitants, including humans, are all but one. The Earth and humanity share a symbiotic relationship with each other. Humans are part of the Earth and an integral part of the Gaia organism.The physical signs of disruptions exhibited by the Earth are perhaps reflections of how the Earth itself is experiencing distress in humanity.
A more plausible hypothesis is that the Earth will take care of itself, in spite of human efforts to undermine it. The Earth will fight back and it is clear who will be the ultimate winner. Let us abandon any notion that Man was made to have dominion over the Earth and the plants and animals.
What we need to do urgently is to begin Earth's healing.
Humans are stressed out. We are constantly rushing from place to place. We set ourselves monumental goals, schedules and deadlines. We never have enough time, money or material things.
We need to stop and smell the roses. We need to hug our kids, literally. We have to start demonstrating love and compassion for our fellow human being and show it from the heart.
We need to stop and heal ourselves first before we will be able to witness a healing of the Earth.