By Gareth Williams
It’s widespread knowledge that we are all faced with the threat of global warming, the loss of species every day, even mass extinction. This is terrible beyond words and yet, for the most part, we seem to carry on pretty much business-as-usual.
Unfortunately, global powers are seriously underplaying their responsibilities. Some even seem to be intent on hastening the journey over the precipice. In the light of this, what can we do? As Easton puts it, we mustn’t turn our backs. Ethically, we are called on to do whatever we can. Each of us may be but a drop in an ocean but put enough drops together and you can make a big wave!
One possible approach to the situation is to think global and act local.
I currently live in Herefordshire, through which flows the lovely River Wye. It is currently in a critical situation of pollution. A number of residents are doing their best to monitor the situation and to campaign to safeguard the river. I wanted to contribute something. Finding my way to a dialogue with Angela Jones, the wise woman of the Wye, what struck me was the urgency of the situation. Angela explained that there were maybe 2 or 3 years to turn things round before the river’s ecosystem would be totally dead. That was about 9 months ago!
My son is 5. I am nearly 50 years older than him. What will the world be like when he is my age? Will there even be a liveable planet? The way things are now, I have no idea. This is the reality of the uncertainty of these times we live in.
Joseph Campbell, the great mythologist of the 20th century said people have always had myths to guide them. He suggested that the myth for this time is expressed in the photo called Earthrise – the picture of the Earth taken from the Apollo 8 spaceship in 1968. Here we can clearly see this beautiful jewel of a planet in the vast expanse of space. If everyone could only get more of a sense of this rare, wonderful place – the richness of everyday life, the trees, the bees, cups of tea; the sky, that we are all here together, sharing this Earth – then maybe we would be more able to free ourselves of the overdrive of greed, competition, and war. This is both a very idealistic position and a very obvious and simple one.
Looking after the planet has to be a priority these days. If we haven’t got the planet, what do we have?!
So, will you be the change?