We must act quickly to repair what we can.
- Strawberry Fair;
- The Russian Prince.
- Creating the Best Workplace on Earth.
- The Nature of Visual Illusion.
- The Messenger Adrift: book two of the Messenger Trilogy;
Our lives and livelihood depend on it. United Nations Environment Programme. We need to understand ourselves as biological creatures at one with the diversity of all life.
Young Justice: “Alienated”
When we can truly see this unity and interdependence, we will find nature to be forgiving, generous, and resilient. Kenny Ausubel. We travel together, passengers on a little spaceship, dependent on its vulnerable supplies of air and soil; all committed for our safety to its security and peace; preserved from annihilation only by the care, the work and, I will say, the love we give our fragile craft. White in Charlotte's Web.
Benjamin Hoff. The fact is that consumption is limited by nature's reproductive capacity--over-consumption today means less natural capital and lower natural income tomorrow.
This, in turn, may force future generations to accelerate the downward spiral as they erode remaining stocks of natural capital to meet their own consumption needs. In other words, life on Earth including human life can be sustained only within the limits of the dividends nature pays on our remaining stocks and future investments in natural capital.
Mathis Wackernagel and William Rees. The Earth's biophysical systems are large, complex, self-organizing entities. This means there is typically a long lag time between economic cause and ecological effect. For example, whatever global warming we may already have experienced is not the result of today's levels of greenhouse gases but rather the levels reached perhaps 40 years ago; even though CFC production may be winding down, ozone depletion may worsen for a decade and it may be a half century or more before stratospheric ozone returns to normal.
Thus, the temptation to wait until we are certain that a particular trend is fatal, dangerous or simply uneconomic before deciding on corrective action leads us into an ecological trap. At best, the delay simply further entrenches our unsustainable lifestyles, making change the more difficult; at worst, it will be too late to do anything to reverse the trend. Cooperation for mutual benefit, a survival strategy very common in natural systems, is one that humanity needs to emulate.
Eugene Odum. Human beings are the only creatures who are able to behave irrationally in the name of reason.
Ashley Montagu, quoted in New York Times. It may not be irrelevant to note that even very modest forms of life, like earthworms, dung beetles and fiddler crabs, have no trouble identifying the real problems they must deal with if they are to survive. Edward Goldsmith. Nature is an endless combination and repetition of a very few laws. She hums the old well-known air through innumerable variations. Ralph Waldo Emerson. Nature never deceives us; it is always we who deceive ourselves.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Emile single quote over first e of emile. Nature's law affirm instead of prohibit. If you violate her laws, you are your own prosecuting attorney, judge, jury, and hangman. Our most serious problem, perhaps, is that we have become a nation of fantasists. We believe, apparently, in the infinite availability of finite resources. Our present ecological overshoot is indicated by the global degradation of forests, soil, water systems, fisheries and biological diversity. Serious harm, I am afraid, has been wrought to our generation by fostering the idea that they would live secure in a permanent order of things.
The real survivors are the Earth inhabitants that have lived millions of years without consuming their ecological capital, the base from which all abundance flows. The world is not to be put in order, the world is order incarnate. It is for us to put ourselves in unison with this order. Henry Miller. We have forgotten the earth, forgotten it in the sense that we fail to regard it as a source of our life.
Fairfield Osborn. What we lack is intellectual and emotional acceptance of the fact that humanity is materially dependent on nature and that nature's productive capacity is limited. Nature is evenly balanced. We cannot disturb her equilibrium, for we know that the law of Cause and Effect is the unerring and inexorable law of nature; but we do fail to find our own equilibrium as nations and as individuals, because we have not yet learned that the same law works as inexorably in human life and in society as in nature -- that what we sow, we must inevitably reap.
Overshoot is growth beyond carrying capacity. Carrying capacity limits can be overshot without a "big bang" because of the availability of large capital stocks. Harvests can still increase and money incomes rise, and while there may be indications of ecological stress, all else may seem normal. Ultimately, however, the consequences of eroded natural capital may be felt as eco-catastrophe and population crash. The idea of absolute freedom is fiction. It's based on the idea of an independent self. But in fact, there's no such thing.
There's no self without other people. There's no self without sunlight. There's no self without dew. And water. And bees to pollinate the food that we eat So the idea of behaving in a way that doesn't acknowledge those reciprocal relationships is not really freedom, it's indulgence. Peter Coyote, New Age, August The most irrevocable of [natures] laws says that a species cannot occupy a niche that appropriates all resources--there has to be some sharing. Any species that ignores this law winds up destroying its community to support its own expansion.
The time has come to lower our voices, to cease imposing our mechanistic patterns on the biological processes of the earth, to resist the impulse to control, to command, to force, to oppress, and to begin quite humbly to follow the guidance of the larger community on which all life depends. What we need Timothy Weiskel.
Part Four: The Ideas
The underlying economic logic of an economy based on unlimited growth remains largely unchallenged in public discourse. Timothy C. We are grossly wasting our energy resources and other precious raw materials as though their supply were infinite. We must even face the prospect of changing our basic ways of living. This change will either be made on our own initiative in a planned and rational way, or forced on us with chaos and suffering by the inexorable laws of nature. What is happening now is of a geological and biological order of magnitude.
We are upsetting the entire earth system that, over some billions of years and through an endless sequence of groping, of trials and errors, has produced such a magnificent array of living forms, forms capable of seasonal self-renewal over vast periods of time. Thomas Berry, "The Universe and the University". A good deed done to an animal is as meritorious as a good deed done to a human being, while an act of cruelty to an animal is as bad as an act of cruelty to a human being. By ethical conduct toward all creatures, we enter into a spiritual relationship with the universe.
Human nature will find itself only when it fully realizes that to be human it has to cease to be beastly or brutal. Mahatma Gandhi. I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of a whole human being. Abraham Lincoln.
Alienated Planet Earth and the End That Will be Coming to Our World
I cannot but have reverence for all that is called life. I cannot avoid compassion for everything that is called life. That is the beginning and foundation of morality. Albert Schweitzer, quoted in Reverence for Life. I feel that spiritual progress does demand at some stage that we should cease to kill our fellow creatures for the satisfaction of our bodily wants.
I hold that, the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to protection by man from the cruelty of man. If [man] is not to stifle human feelings, he must practice kindness toward animals, for he who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of man by his treatment of animals. Immanuel Kent. If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men. Francis of Assisi, quoted in Life by St.
It should not be believed that all beings exist for the sake of the existence of man. On the contrary, all other beings too have been intended for their own sakes and not for the sake of anything else.
Related Alienated Planet Earth and the End that will be Coming to our World
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