Wednesday, May 17, 2006


In The Matrix, the character who turns out to be a robot tells Keanu that humans are aren't so much animals as parasites. Like cancer, they move to an area and suck the life out of it until there's nothing left, then they move on to another area. Is this true? Does it have to be true?

Today we were on the Jersey shore, and it's nice in some ways, but it's pretty dirty. It's not even summer yet but there was a good deal of trash on the beach. People don't really walk on the beach so much where we were because there's a boardwalk 50 feet from the ocean or so--so why keep the beach clean?

I've noticed since living here that so many people just don't think about the way they're living and how it affects the world around them. Luckily we live somewhere that has recycling available, but most places in New Jersey don't, I think. It's depressing to think about how many people there are, how many resources we're using here in the USA, and how much destruction of the environment we're causing. Are we really a parasite to the earth? Would it be possible for us to live in a way that doesn't destroy whatever area we're using? There are people who live in sustainable communities, but is it at all likely that whole societies would be able to live in a way that was sustainable for their area?

It's hard to know, because a lot of times we don't learn that something is destructive until several years down the road. But then, you'd think we would stop doing whatever that thing is and find a new way to do the things we need to do. But instead, myself included, we just keep doing things the way we've been doing them, the way everyone else does. I don't know how much longer we can keep that up, though!

I hope we eventually learn that our health and the health of our planet are entertwined, and start taking care of this amazing place we've been given in ways that will allow it to be here (and usable) for coming generations.

1 comment:

Chris M. said...

I hope so! Carl the Earth Quaker wrote about an active discernment process taking place in northern California:
Paradigm Shift for Sierra Friends Center.

I recently co-presented a workshop on the testimony/value of Stewardship at SF Friends School. It was very well received, and a deep discussion took place; but then, it's kind of preaching to the choir (which I guess is part of why I don't live in central New Jersey any more!).

Finally, through an email from the EF Schumacher Society, I found this fascinating essay in Vermont Commons by Kirkpatrick Sale, about bioregional economics.

Chris M.
Tables, Chairs & Oaken Chests