Thanksgiving 2018. A holiday founded on colonialism and genocide, repurposed to allow gratitude and connection – with family, community, and all life. As I turn the compost pile in the front yard, a neighbor walks to her car beneath a sunny Seattle morning sky with double rainbows. “Happy Thanksgiving Jordan”. Returning the perfunctory greeting, I …
On March 14, local faith leaders participated in a discussion organized by FACT – Faith Action Climate Team, a King County Interfaith Group working on climate issues. We began by acknowledging that climate change is undeniable. Scientists have near unanimous agreement on this, though “merchants of doubt” representing the profiteers of fossil fuel corporations have cynically …
How we perceive the world depends upon the stories slide5that we tell ourselves and that depends in large measure upon the stories that we read, hear, and the stories that we create and live in our daily lives. If our stories have kindness and compassion around every corner, then that is the world we will live in, and we will automatically sleep better, experience less depression and anxiety, and feel happier and more peaceful.
As a health care professional, I believe that anyone working in this field has a moral responsibility to educate their patients about climate change. It’s not simply a matter of doing the right thing, but letting people know that their health is already being directly affected by climate change. If we think that government will “fix the problem”, we ignore the structural obstacles preventing a top-down government fix.
The earth is us. We are the earth. Her ocean flows through our veins, her solidity strengthening our bones. The pumping of our heart draws strength from the molten core of the planet. Sunlight shimmering through the trees is our own nervous system. And we feel her pain. We know she is suffering, somewhere in the deep recesses of consciousness.
Stand tall and brave
Beside deep water
Surf this planetary wave
Of a world getting hotter.
Only when one has reached a firm conclusion, that a peaceful world can never be realized until all people are truly free, will privileged white people understand that it is our moral duty to work tirelessly to bring true freedom and happiness to people of all races – ending colonialism, racism, patriarchy, capitalism, and all forms of oppression.
Kayaktivism is planetary acupuncture in motion, with hundreds of kayakers (and native canoes) stimulating an awakening node with their pointy crafts, opening up the stagnation blocking the channels in the collective consciousness of humanity.
Even though the long view of wisdom reminds us that everything is okay, perfectly as it should be, in the present moment it still matters deeply what we do in the world. Climate change still represents a threat to every living creature on the planet, and there are countless other social issues which we ignore at our collective peril. So what do we do inside this existential pickle we find ourselves in?
Polish a dirty mirror. Take the garbage out. Each act connected with sacred intention. Even scrolling through my Facebook feed. We need to look within, find the peace within us, before we can share it. There is no other way.