04 December, 2006

Sustainability; aka, Living The Way It Was Meant

Having just read the story of Ishmael, by Daniel Quinn, I can't help but think that we have it all wrong. The way we live is at odds with nature. The way we go about our every day routines is not the way it was meant to be.

In the grand scheme of things, we believe ourselves to be not only the heirs of the world, but the divinely appointed monarchical rulers of the world. We are the end all, be all of evolution. But this is obviously not so. If this were so, then we would not be destroying the world as we are. If we were meant to rule the world, then we would know how to rule the world, we would have a way to obtain this knowledge. There is, however, no way to obtain this knowledge, as there is in fact no such knowledge.

Actually, let me rephrase that. The way to rule the world.. the way to conquer the world.. is to be at peace with the world, to allow others around us to grow as we have. We must become benevolent, helpful leaders, rather than the tyrannical, dominating, power hungry beasts we are now.

This is the way it was meant to be.

And if this is not the way that comes to be, then we will come to realize the end... not only of mankind, of our own species, but of everything around us. What we do in our culture, in our lives, effects not only us but everything in our environs. Everybody sees this, but nobody accepts this fact. It stares us in the face through deforestation, holes in the ozone layer, extinction of countless species... and yet people still don't realize that we are causing this, and at an ever accelerating rate. More importantly, people don't realize that we can change this. People don't realize that we can stop being this way, live at peace with the world.

Am I trying to say that we should live like aborigines, or like American Indians, or perhaps like a cannibal tribe in the Amazon? Certainly not. They all have their own ways, and those ways work wonderfully for them, but they would not work for our people as a whole. No, the way we can accomplish this is through a move forward. We can accomplish this by ceasing to destroy the environment with harmful chemicals. We can accomplish this through discontinuing the destruction of natural habitats, killing off everything that gets in our way. We can do this by realizing that our culture itself needs to evolve.

Of course, perhaps an evolution isn't enough. We've been progressing towards our destruction at a steadily growing rate of speed for centuries now. Who's to say that this speed won't grow so intensely that we seal our own doomed fate within the next ten years? Perhaps the next five? Hell why stop there, what if we perfect our destruction of our environs so absolutely that we end our very existence in the next year? Is that so inconceivable? Not to this mind. So then what needs to take place, if an evolution is not enough? The only other option... a revolution. All people... society as a whole, needs to be brought into the realization of what is happening in the world... what they, themselves, are doing to the world. They need to learn, and quickly. That is the only way to prevent our untimely demise, and that of the world itself.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

there are many things that need to be changed in order for our species to survive. the first thing (and most important, in my opinion) is population control. if you read story of B there is a speech B gives that very descriptively explains our population expansion patterns and how it affects our food consumption.

i'm so happy you read ishmael. most people i give the book to never tell me how they feel about it. you and m are the only ones... :)