When will we as Humans realize that we are not separate from nature and that infact we are nature. When will we understand than when we destroy the planet we are destroying ourselves.
We live in an insane time when no one is thinking long term and actions are based on short-term profits. But there is still hope. Slowly people are waking up. It is time to save the planet, before it is too late.
This worldview of unrestrained exploitation is the greatest threat to the life that surrounds us. Even our definition of sustainability revolve around trying to find the formula to ensure that we can keep on taking, far into the future.
The question we need to ask has to be, what does the Earth ask of us.
For much of Humans time on the planet, before the great delusion, we lived in cultures that understood the covenant of reciprocity. For the Earth to stay in balance, for the gifts to continue to flow, we must give back in equal measure for what we are given.
Our first responsibility, the most potent offering we possess, is gratitude.
Gratitude is much more than a simple thank you. Gratitude implies recognition not only of the gift, but of the giver. Gratitude is founded on the deep knowing that our very existence relies on the gifts of other beings.
This Human emotion has adaptive value because it engenders practical outcomes for sustainability. The practice of gratitude will lead to the practice of self-restraint, of taking only what you need.
Indigenous story traditions are full of cautionary tales about the failure of gratitude.
When people forget to honor the gift, the consequences are always material as well as spiritual. The spring dries up, the corn does not grow, the animals do not return.
Western story traditions are strangely silent on this matter, and so we find ourselves in an era when we are afraid of the climate we have created.
Human people have ethics for gratitude; we apply them formally to one another. We say thank you. We understand that receiving a gift incurs a responsibility to give a gift in return.
Gratitude is our first, but not our only gift. We are storytellers, music makers, devisers of ingenious machines, healers, scientists, and lovers of an Earth who asks that we give our gifts on behalf of life.
If we are to persist as a species on this beautiful planet we have to expand our ethics for gratitude to the living Earth.