Monday, April 22, 2013

Earth Day: Toward an Ecological Mind

The greatest illusion of this world is the illusion of separation.
Once the story our world is built on reflects the reality of interconnection,
we will be on a true path towards sustainability.
- Charles Eisenstein
 
 
On this Earth Day, as we seek to preserve our Home for future generations, we can consider what is arguably at the root of the issue: our relatively low degree of ecological awareness. What affects our eco-consciousness?

In 1992, IAC president Wagner Alegretti delivered a speech at the United Nations' Earth Summit to elucidate the link between consciousness and ecology.  As we witness the continual detriment of our "space-ship" Earth, we can ask why there is still insufficient will to reverse the trend.  Underpinning our behavior is a worldview or paradigm, a story that we have internalized.  The predominant paradigm can be characterized as materialistic, mechanistic, or reductionist. 

In other words, we tend to understand humans, animals, trees, rivers, air, water, and the rest of the Earth as material things, or resources for material motivations.  Even though we may have certain principles that state otherwise (from religion, from modern science like the 100-year-old quantum physics, our internal compass or philosophy, our senses), when we are limited to physical senses, this limited view of the world seems to convey that all is matter; that life is short; that we are on our own and must follow our own immediatist best interest in a competitive world. 

There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of
human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world.
To me, it underscores our responsibility to
deal more kindly with one another,
and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot,
the only home we've ever known.
- Carl Sagan
 
Experiences like seeing the Earth from outer space, clairvoyance or projection of the consciousness (out-of-body experience), however, literally give us a new perspective, a new consciousness-centric or consciential paradigm. In other words, it demonstrates that Life is not a thing. We are not the body, ecological systems are not mere resources, the experience of enjoying the sight of a beautiful mountain is not worthless, even if it is not tangible or monetized.

With this new cosmology, we understand ourselves in a more integrated way, as part of a cosmic ecosystem, a cosmic family.  We understand that actions (even our thoughts and intentions) have inexorable consequences and we think in a more long-term fashion. We understand that we are eternal and that we have more than just this life: not only should we preserve the Earth for future generations, we may be part of those future generations.

As we disconnect from the consensus trance, from the rat race, we naturally seek more authentic and lucid sources of purpose, of meaning. Rather than being driven by fear, we discover new motivations: the continual drive to improve ourselves, to learn and to advance the well-being and evolution of our fellow Beings.


Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's needs, but not every man's greed- Mohandas Gandhi
 




"A New Story for the People" - Sustainable Man


Nelson Abreu
Los Angeles
IAC California

1 comment:

  1. Great videos and thank you for the reflection. I recently read another article on this subject.

    http://www.rappler.com/life-and-style/27176-earth-day-ecology-of-consciousness

    ReplyDelete