A letter…part of Sunday’s Sermon
I am writing in support of every one of us doing all we can to provide care, concern, and deep commitment to the planet that is our one and only source of life and nurture. In all the vast and, so far as we know, inhospitable Universes, this remarkable blue dot alone contains – within a fragile atmospheric envelope – a unique combination of elements capable of sustaining human existence.
Our treatment of this planet is an indictment of thoughtlessness and greed. Dumping countless tonnes of garbage into land, air and sea has wrought unspeakable harm upon our home, resulting in the mass extinctions of millions of life forms whose fate and destiny is inextricably bound up with our own. We have disrupted the basis of human life.
We have created a system that commodifies all life, a buy and sell market for every thing on earth. Having persuaded ourselves that money can cure all ills we now watch in disbelief as that philosophy destroys the living world, while insisting on it’s ‘right’ to do so. Ironically still helpless in addressing the disruption it has caused.
Undeniable in oceans smothered in plastic and acidification, an atmosphere choking in carbon and newly released methane, while the earth cracks open without moisture to relieve fire consumed forests, it is reflected in the ways we treat one another. The poorest among us, sold out of homes and living to sustain the systems destroying our world, clamour at gates and barricades, pleading for assistance, for shelter and support as the storms hammer, fires rage and our children lie helpless in its grasp.
These are indeed dire and perilous times. Whether we can act in time to change outcomes appears debatable. There remain, however, the hopes of our children who call upon us to act anyway. To turn away from the systems of exploitation and abuse that have caused so much harm and deprivation, death and destruction, to turn away and, instead, to turn onto another path.
A sustainable, nurturing, wisdom informed path. A path of care, a path of blessing, a path of shared resources, shared effort and shared existence. Inasmuch as we are responsible for creating a garbage heap out of Eden, we remain capable of planting seeds that will result in a garden that can and will support life for our children and grandchildren. A garden we cannot picture, but must imagine in hope and work for with implacable, loving, insistent urgency.
Those who lead us, nationally, provincially and economically do not have faith that we are capable of the changes we need to make. That we are more than the producers and consumers our social system has trained us to be. That we can become part of something greater than ourselves, part of a grand and vital effort to renew creation by renewing our place among our relations on this earth and all the life she yet sustains.
Perhaps we deserve their loss of faith. Our children and our planet, on the other hand, deserve the best we can offer. If our national and provincial programs seem destined to add to the problem then it is up to us to act in our own communities while refusing, any more, to be complicit in the awful and foolish race to consume the entire planet in a blazing pyre of greed. Let us, at least, be the ones we have been looking for, the ones our relations need.