I feel like we are at an in-between time. Sort of in between those first years of getting to know eachother, having babies, figuring out the track our lives could take. Some people at this age, 28, are already choosing a path with settled careers, mortgages, an established work week, weekend, holiday season, regular dinner parties, life has sort of set itself into a comfortable and cosy pattern. That sort of life sounds so nice to me.
But we are not there yet.
We do have the kids, we (being Henry and I) have worked out our relationship, but essentially we are ‘homeless’ (though in truth I am finding that my home is not so much in a house but in the relationships we cultivate, and I am feeling more at home in myself and in the homes of my kinfolk and in the relationships with my good friends…so the term is not a negative one at all).
I am learning that my home is not just the space I carve out for myself within this terra firma, but it is, instead the terra firma itself. My mindset is changing.
More and more I grow passionate about making this world which is my home…all of it…a better place.
I am learning to ask, as John F Kennedy once put it, not what my planet can do for me, but instead what I can do for my planet. Not to think only of my career, my house, my money, my name, my future, my present comfort…though, yes, they are considerations.
I read in a delightful book recently, Le Road Trip, these words which struck me (paraphrased): ‘this earth is not changed so much by your being here, but you are changed by this earth and it means a heck of a lot more to you than you do to it.’
So it is in caring for this earth and learning to work with it and all it’s perfect, created patterns that I am growing more committed to.
The earth has inherited patterns, life cycles, and there is abundance in the earth’s natural order. I believe God made it like that. I believe that if we truly loved God we would also love his creation and we would not, ourselves, act like blunderbuss demi-gods and attempt to create our own order on top of God’s natural order, instead we would be wise to fit ourselves in with the natural order of things and learn how to live within them. There is more we can learn through humbling ourselves to work within this existing system than we can, in arrogance, by inventing our own order…which, by the by, is not perfect and causes a lot of grief along the way, damaging animals, ecosystems, humans, the environment, creating deserts through mismanagement etc. There is a lot of damage caused through our blundering along, raping and pillaging (in effect).
I was not meaning to go off this tangent, but it’s the truth and so might as well be said.
It is the small, daily choices and actions of many that will have an effect on our world and will be the deciding factor in what kind of planet we will be leaving to our children. Our children may not be able to eat fish, overfishing of the ocean looking to eliminate wild-harvesting within 40 years, it would kill me to know that there may be no wild places for people to retreat to. I’m sure, hundreds of years ago, natives of those beautiful continents of America and Australia could not believe that the land would degrade to where it is today, that people would not be free to roam for food or shelter, that food would be bought from buildings, wrapped in colourful plastic and meat harvested from animals who are reduced to no more than a kind of food crop in the most cruel of ways.
If you need convincing go to Animals Australia and look at some of the videos. I was so naive to think that Australian conditions were far and above the American ones…and they may well be…but they are still not good.
And anything less than good we should not partner with.
I, admittedly, have made many unethical and damaging choices over the years. Ignorance has been bliss (though not in retrospect, it just holds regret), but we can ignore these things at the peril of future generations (among other things). I am not so ignorant now, so I can not claim that anymore. To choose wrongly would be to put my own neck on the block. To say nothing would do the same. It is information which must be shared. It is a thought which we all must consider. The world has changed and our thinking and the way we think must change too. We can no longer be naivetes, sailing through the world to our own ends alone.