“WE ARE on the 11th hour” was the famous line of environmentalists talking about the state of the earth. They blamed most of us for not standing for future generations. We have pushed our mother earth to the wall that there is no turning back. We have brought wrath to the environment. Where will we be?
Actions here and there have been initiated to save the environment. Pope Francis has issued a powerful and strong encyclical “Laudato Si” to remind us of our obligations towards our common home. He has given us the guidelines and principles based on the gospels and the teachings of the church. He reminds us of our connection with God through Mother Nature. He gives us a signal that we have not just the right but the obligation to clean up our common home. The Holy Father tells us that this is not just a planet but this is our only home. We cannot find another earth, we may find one similar to it but will never be the same. Where will we be?
Oriental religions had been reminding everyone of the connectedness of everything in this world. You destroy one, you destroy all. This is what ecology means. A small infraction on nature will have a grievous rippling effect. Catching a butterfly will reduce the flowers in the garden. Getting a beautiful flower from the garden will reduce the production of seed. And so on. We should have left everything to nature. We should have let natural take its course. Buddha and other enlightened gurus have reminded us to leave what we see in nature but since we are hard-headed, we disturbed the balance of nature.
The Taoists call for balance or equilibrium. They called it the “Tao”. Where is this balance? It is within us. It is inside our very being. The balance had been destroyed by the destruction of the environment. Our body no longer responds well to what is natural for it is already destroyed. The destruction of the inner self is influenced by the disturbances of nature. We have surrendered our natural wells to mechanized ones. We have changed our organic soils to inorganic soils. We cut down trees in exchange for bungalow houses. We have cultured new species in exchange for endemic ones. These are the imbalances we have promoted. These things destroyed our oneness with nature. These things destroyed the natural balance of our bodies. Where will we be?
Environmental activists boldly call on everyone to respond and save Mother Earth. They protest against the destroyers. They consider themselves as transformers and radicals. They remind people like us who have been so calloused at the calls to save Mother Nature since time immemorial. We are now told that Mother Nature is turning its back against us. Monster waves, earthquakes, super typhoons, geo-storms, unexplainable weather systems, floods, longer droughts, pestilence, and pests are nature’s way of returning the favor.
Where did we fail? Amidst all the calls and reminders from humans and nature, why do we still destroy our environment? Why do we still allow the use of plastics and styros, even though we already know their effects on the world? Why do we destroy our only home?
Today, is the right time to speak up and do what we ought to do to our beloved Mother Earth.
St. Ezekiel Moreno and St. Nicholas of Tolentino, pray for us.