We live in each other’s Shadow
At the start of a new year it’s always a help to take some time to look back on the year just passed. What strengths or new wisdom have you gained to journey into this new year?
We need all the wisdom we can get to face the years ahead. The planet is facing a “tipping point” into the kind of change that earth has not known for over ten thousand years! Humans have no history of knowing how to deal with such a scenario! We’ve read about the catastrophes that violent weather events caused in various parts of the world during 2011: floods and landslides in Africa, Latin America and Asia; frighteningly destructive tornados in North America, forest fires; droughts and so on. These were not merely isolated events, but links in a chain of events all impacting on the environment in which we live, and largely due to our unchecked use of carbon energy.
We have highlighted before in these pages one consequence of unchecked global warming: climate refugees. If sea levels rise, many low-lying nations and regions will disappear. Where will the populations go? If severe droughts increase where can food be produced for local people? The questions continue…and finally: what can we /I do about this potential disaster?
First, remember that we share this world with 7 billion people; it is not ours to take over for ourselves. Then realise that scientists are now discovering - and confirming -what the world’s mystics and holy people have known for centuries: we are all interconnected, every action of mine has a ripple effect outwards, not only on other people but on the non-human created environment as well.
This year let one of your resolutions be to learn something about the wider or global impact of at least one or two of your everyday actions with regard to your use of something, your choice to consume or buy something. If we all did this we might be making the earth a safer and more healthy home especially for our sisters and brothers living in the world’s most vulnerable places. Remember the Irish proverb: we live in each other’s shadow! Carol Dorgan