One of the most tragic twists in the story of humanity is our estrangement from nature, our contempt for our environment and our abuse of Mother Earth.
We have behaved so badly during the last centuries that we had to be stopped forcefully. We needed a harsh reminder; we needed a wake-up call.
We now find ourselves destitute, unhappy, and lonely.
The current pandemic has further exposed this reality.
It is finally dawning on us that we have been destroying our only true shelter, literally and figuratively.
There are, though, even at this late hour, reasons to believe that our strange alienation from nature may have been a useful learning curve, a necessary phase, perhaps, in humanity’s journey towards wisdom and maturity.
Like a teenager going through the process of defining their individuality by rebelling against their closest family, humanity has strayed away from its original symbiosis with nature, treating it with contempt, taking it for granted – abusing its love and trust with unjustifiable cruelty.
Blind to our planet’s suffering, we have misused its richness and generosity – only to try to cater to our endless needs, selfishly.
Caught in our foolish desire to have it all our way, and to prove our invincibility, we had forgotten our roots. We had forgotten the nurturing that nature has always given us – and we had long forgotten to show our gratitude.
There is no limit to the Earth’s love and kindness; but, as it turns out, there is a limit to our ignorance – thankfully.
It is never too late to acknowledge our mistakes and to fulfill our duty.
And so, slowly, painfully, we have started to wake up, recently.
Cut off from our only true source of nourishment and inspiration – with nowhere to hide, we are exhibiting the first signs of some, long forgotten, humility.
Like the prodigal son repenting for his folly, like the youngster finally recognizing their parents’ unconditional love and support, humanity is beginning to come to terms with the damage it has caused – with its terrible legacy.
After centuries of abusing Earth’s abundance and generosity, we are now starting to see and feel the consequences of our reckless behavior. It is a rude, but welcome awakening.
Living on planet Earth is a spectacular opportunity – a privilege.
With privilege comes responsibility.
Life is a gift, bestowed on us.
It is also a duty.
The time has come to write a new, more uplifting chapter, in the story of humanity.
Where do we start?
First, we must accept our responsibility.
As nature’s children, inheritors, and beneficiaries, we are also called to be its guardians. It is time we fully acknowledged our duty and started acting accordingly.
Then, we must get to work together, as humanity. Decide priorities, put a plan in place, and implement it urgently. Do everything in our power to stop the destruction. Find the best solutions to help heal nature’s wounds and restore its majesty. Steps have already been taken. The Paris Agreement signed 5 years ago, showed that we are aware of the urgency and of the power of solidarity. Millions of people, across the globe, are joining in this common effort, daily. There is a lot to do, but, together, we will get there – eventually.
The most important shift, though, will have to come from changing the belief system on which we built our world, together, as humanity.
For too long we allowed division to define our world.
It led to fierce, merciless competition, bitterness, hopelessness, mistrust, and chronic insecurity.
We must replace this damaging, fear-based, disheartening way of thinking, and change our worldview profoundly.
Our focus for the new era in the story of Humanity will have to be Interconnectedness.
We will have to rediscover and reclaim our:
Connectedness with nature: based on our newfound awareness that we are not, and cannot be, separate from it. We are, have always been, and will forever be, deeply connected with nature intrinsically, symbiotically. Everything that we do to nature affects us directly. When we hurt nature, we hurt ourselves. When we help nature heal – we heal ourselves. It is that simple, really.
Connectedness with humanity:
contrary to the prevalent illusion that we can thrive individually, life is constantly reminding us that we can only really find true happiness as humanity – in solidarity. Yes, we have the freedom to make our own choices and decisions – but everything we are and everything we do, impacts the entire human community. We are all in this – adventure of life – together. The current global pandemic makes this plain to see.
And, despite moments of doubt, we can take heart from our togetherness and unity. Whilst on our own we might feel overwhelmed, we will always find a way when we support each other and share our resources, skills, and creativity, collectively.
Connectedness with the entire universe:
Our interconnectedness expands beyond the limits of our small, yet rich and beautifully generous, planet, into infinity. Scientists have discovered with awe that our bodies contain atoms forged in the death of giant stars. Our lives follow similar cycles to galaxies. “We are the universe, and the universe is in us” – many sages have tried to remind us, for thousands of years, patiently.
Given the current global crisis, given the ongoing shared suffering and desperate need for inspiration and hope, it is now more important than ever to remind ourselves of our interconnectedness with nature, with fellow humans, and with the entire universe.
We will find solace when we contemplate the order of the universe, its serene intelligence, and breath-taking beauty.
We will tap into our own healing power when we reconnect with nature and restore our nurturing relationship with it.
And, when we decide to trust each other and work together with courage and compassion, we will find strength in unity.
We have good reasons to believe in our regenerative, transformative power, as humanity.
The latest crisis has forced us to stop and press reset.
It has confronted us to the terrible truth of our past failures. And reminded us, sternly, unequivocally, of our collective responsibility.