Visions of Global Cooperation and Ecological Sanity


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Interwoven geometry in the tile artwork of the Alhambra in Spain

We the free beings of biosphere Earth,

in order simply to survive, do hereby
affirm, ordain, and declare our total
and constitutive interdependence-
with one another, with all creatures
of the air, the waters, and the earth,
and with the mystery of Life itself.
Thus do we consecrate ourselves
to the service of Life,
and to one another.
 

By this declaration we do also sever all bonds,
whether legal, political, financial, or psychological,
which may yet bind us to mechanisms of planetary suicide.
 

There can be no lesser commitment. Only this immediate
and unconditional repudiation of the forces which presently
imperil the whole Earth can possibly forestall annihilation.
Recognizing and embracing our complete interdependence,
we hereby and for all time formally declare:


There is no place among us for instruments of genocide.
Be they nuclear, chemical, or biological, they are anathema.
Henceforward, the design, production, possession, and/or
deployment of any such instruments will be considered
crimes against humankind and against Life itself,
punishable by excommunication from humane society.
Use of such terrible weapons ineluctably exacts
its own terrible retribution.


Having no other home than this Earth, we cannot
and will not escape a shared destiny: Life, or death.
Having no other sane recourse, we choose Life.
Having no other allegiance than to the sublime
mystery of Life, we hold the following truths
to be obvious and inviolate:


Life is the supreme value.
Interdependence is the rule of Life.
Love is the heart of this law.


Therefore,
be it resolved
by the free beings
of this biosphere Earth, that:


This day we declare ourselves
to be utterly, always, and only
in the hands of one another
—for better or for worse.

 


From: Nucleus: Reconnecting Science and Religion in the Nuclear Age, by Scott Eastham

Published in 1987 by Bear and Company, Santa Fe, New Mexico.


 


By David Richo, PhD
Psychotherapist, author, pastoral counselor
www.davericho.com


   
How do I contribute to a planetary shift from the three poisons of our human environment: greed, hate, and ignorance, to the three drivers of our evolution: justice, peace, and love?
 
A zeal for the transformation of society and the world is how we personally evolve in love. This means that when we fight against the domination systems of aggression and inequality, we are showing and growing in love for the world.
 
Once earth is no longer the ground we walk on but our living mother, we are called to protect and nurture her as she does us. Only when we love earth and its people do we fully love. Then we pray with mother earth not just for our personal satisfaction or gain. When we love we co-create and co-heal the world so it can evolve. Connection is implicit in co-creation since we all join to help the world evolve by conscious intention and specific actions.
 
To love the world is to become planetary citizens. Our individual consciousness and our earth consciousness become one and the same, no division, no dualism, no ranking. Once love and connection are accepted as our authentic identity, war and hate have no place in our hearts or our world. Care for the ecology and cooperation with others become our intensely held commitments.
 
We work in whatever way we can to stop any further denuding of the earth of her natural resources and we do what it takes to renew the powers of the earth. That is love for the world shown in action. Love is then our new primary principle and value.
 
We can expand our earth-and-its-people love by consciously checking into our attitudes toward and contributions to the following social sins:
  • The unjust distribution of goods that is based on the vast differential between rich and poor
  • Destruction of the environment and its ecology
  • Violence, war, and nuclear arms
  • Oppression and prejudice based on race, sexual orientation, and religion
  • The political and religious oppression of women in patriarchal societies
 
A common element in all five of these forms of social injustice is domination, what happens when egalitarian relations towards others are denied. Love can’t survive with domination, patriarchy, control, rapacity, violence, and repression.
 
I close my reflections with two quotes that help me expand my horizons of possibility:
 
Politics and the life of the spirit are inseparable. –Mahatma Gandhi
 

Politics is the supreme expression of charity. –Pope Pius XI

 



February 1, 2012  —  From: https://occupiedmedia.us/2012/02/a-new-declaration/


 

We hold these truths to be self-evident:
 
That the real, physical world is the source of our own lives, and the lives of others. A weakened planet is less capable of supporting life, human or otherwise.
 
Thus the health of the real world is primary, more important than any social or economic system, because all social or economic systems are dependent upon a living planet.
 
It is self-evident that to value a social system that harms the planet’s capacity to support life over life itself is to be out of touch with physical reality.
 
That any way of life based on the use of nonrenewable resources is by definition not sustainable.
 
That any way of life based on the hyper-exploitation of renewable resources is by definition not sustainable: if, for example, fewer salmon return every year, eventually there will be none. This means that for a way of life to be sustainable, it must not harm native communities: native prairies, native forests, native fisheries, and so on.
 
That the real world is interdependent, such that harm done to rivers harms those humans and nonhumans whose lives depend on these rivers, harms forests and prairies and wetlands surrounding these rivers, harms the oceans into which these rivers flow. Harm done to mountains harms the rivers flowing through them. Harm done to oceans harms everyone directly or indirectly connected to them.
 
That you cannot argue with physics. If you burn carbon-based fuels, this carbon will go into the air, and have effects in the real world.
 
That creating and releasing poisons into the world will poison humans and nonhumans.
 
That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to create poisons for which there is no antidote.
 
That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to create messes that cannot be cleaned up.
 
That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to destroy places humans or nonhumans need to survive.
 
That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to drive human cultures or nonhuman species extinct.
 
That reality trumps all belief systems: what you believe is not nearly so important as what is real.
 
That on a finite planet you cannot have an economy based on or requiring growth. At least you cannot have one and expect to either have a planet or a future.
 
That the current way of life is not sustainable, and will collapse. The only real questions are what will be left of the world after that collapse, and how bad things will be for the humans and nonhumans who come after. We hold it as self-evident that we should do all that we can to make sure that as much of the real, physical world remains intact until the collapse of the current system, and that humans and nonhumans should be as prepared as possible for this collapse.
 
That the health of local economies are more important than the health of a global economy.
 
That a global economy should not be allowed to harm local economies or land bases.
 
That corporations are not living beings. They are certainly not human beings.
 
That corporations do not in any real sense exist. They are legal fictions. Limited liability corporations are institutions created explicitly to separate humans from the effects of their actions—making them, by definition, inhuman and inhumane. To the degree that we desire to live in a human and humane world—and, really, to the degree that we wish to survive—limited liability corporations need to be eliminated.
 
That the health of human and nonhuman communities is more important than the profits of corporations.
 
We hold it as self-evident, as the Declaration of Independence states, “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends [Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness], it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it. . . .” Further, we hold it as self-evident that it would be more precise to say that it is not the Right of the People, nor even their responsibility, but instead something more like breathing—something that if we fail to do we die.
 
If we as a People fail to rid our communities of destructive institutions, those institutions will destroy our communities. And if we in our communities cannot provide meaningful and nondestructive ways for people to gain food, clothing, and shelter then we must recognize it’s not just specific destructive institutions but the entire economic system that is pushing the natural world past breaking points. Capitalism is killing the planet. Industrial civilization is killing the planet.
 
Once we’ve recognized the destructiveness of capitalism and industrial civilization—both of which are based on systematically converting a living planet into dead commodities—we’ve no choice, unless we wish to sign our own and our children’s death warrants, but to fight for all we’re worth and in every way we can to overturn it.

This item first appeared at https://occupiedmedia.us/2012/02/a-new-declaration/ on the Occupied Media web site, and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. Based on a work at occupiedmedia.us.  Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at https://occupiedmedia.us.


ABOUT DERRICK JENSEN: (from Wikipedia) Derrick Jensen is an American author and environmental activist living in Crescent City, California. Jensen has published several books questioning and critiquing modern civilization and its values, including A Language Older Than Words, The Culture of Make Believe, and Endgame. He holds a B.S. in Mineral Engineering Physics from the Colorado School of Mines and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Eastern Washington University. He has also taught creative writing at Pelican Bay State Prison and Eastern Washington University.

 

 


 

 

The earth is a living, conscious being. In company with cultures of many different times and places, we name these things as sacred:
 
air, fire, water, and earth.
 
Whether we see them as the breath, energy, blood, and body of the Mother, or as the blessed gifts of a Creator, or as symbols of the interconnected systems that sustain life, we know that nothing can live without them.
 
To call these things sacred is to say that they have a value beyond their usefulness for human ends, that they themselves become the standards by which our acts, our economics, our laws, and our purposes must be judged. No one has the right to appropriate them or profit from them at the expense of others. Any government that fails to protect them forfeits its legitimacy.
 
All people, all living things, are part of the earth life, and so are sacred. No one of us stands higher or lower than any other. Only justice can assure balance: only ecological balance can sustain freedom. Only in freedom can that fifth sacred thing we call spirit flourish in its full diversity.
 
To honor the sacred is to create conditions in which nourishment, sustenance, habitat, knowledge, freedom, and beauty can thrive. To honor the sacred is to make love possible.
 
To this we dedicate our curiosity, our will, our courage, our silences, and our voices. To this we dedicate our lives.
 
–from Starhawk, The Fifth Sacred Thing 

  

The principle of compassion lies at the heart of all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions, calling us always to treat all others as we wish to be treated ourselves. Compassion impels us to work tirelessly to alleviate the suffering of our fellow creatures, to dethrone ourselves from the centre of our world and put another there, and to honour the inviolable sanctity of every single human being, treating everybody, without exception, with absolute justice, equity and respect.

It is also necessary in both public and private life to refrain consistently and empathically from inflicting pain. To act or speak violently out of spite, chauvinism, or self-interest, to impoverish, exploit or deny basic rights to anybody, and to incite hatred by denigrating others—even our enemies—is a denial of our common humanity. We acknowledge that we have failed to live compassionately and that some have even increased the sum of human misery in the name of religion.

We therefore call upon all men and women ~ to restore compassion to the centre of morality and religion ~ to return to the ancient principle that any interpretation of scripture that breeds violence, hatred or disdain is illegitimate ~ to ensure that youth are given accurate and respectful information about other traditions, religions and cultures ~ to encourage a positive appreciation of cultural and religious diversity ~ to cultivate an informed empathy with the suffering of all human beings—even those regarded as enemies.

We urgently need to make compassion a clear, luminous and dynamic force in our polarized world. Rooted in a principled determination to transcend selfishness, compassion can break down political, dogmatic, ideological and religious boundaries. Born of our deep interdependence, compassion is essential to human relationships and to a fulfilled humanity. It is the path to enlightenment, and indispensable to the creation of a just economy and a peaceful global community.


Find out more about the Charter for Compassion by visiting the Charter web site. 

View videos about Charter for Compassion










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