5.8 Re-imagining Our Relationship

The Nobel-winning behavioral economist, Daniel Kahnemann, said[61],

“We can be blind to the obvious. And we can be blind to our blindness.”

But the time is ripe for our globally connected industrial civilization to overcome culturally bequeathed habits that no longer serve their original purpose and transition to a truly nonviolent, sustainable, steady-state presence on Earth. As Albert Einstein said[62],

“Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty… Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.”

The evolution to a vegetarian, or more precisely, a vegan diet, is an essential first step towards a compassionate relationship with the world. That relationship has to be grounded in integrity. We can no longer pretend to be compassionate while letting the farmer and the butcher do their dark deeds in secret. The consequences of such blatant subterfuges are clearly impacting us all on the planet.

It is not that hard to re-imagine our relationship with the world. One day, I was babysitting our granddaughter, Kimaya, and she asked me to take her to see the Disney movie, Cinderella[63]. I thought that I might be mildly amused by the familiar story, but I woke up when I heard the lead character articulate precisely what Climate Healers has been about. She said three simple sentences that I call the Cinderella Principles:

1. Have Courage, Be Kind and All Will Be Well. Courage is the original virtue, for without courage no other virtue can be exercised reliably. This is why Lord Krishna spoke to Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita, for he among all the characters in the Mahabharata, exemplified courage. The evidence is clear that if we screw up our courage to be truly kind to all Life, then not only will the environmental crises abate, but also the planet will literally heal itself.

2. Just Because It Is What Is Done, Doesn’t Mean That It Is What Should Be Done. If we don’t question our ingrained habits, then how can we truly make radical changes in our relationship with the world? Just because we have been enslaving and abusing animals for the past 200,000 years, doesn’t mean that we should continue to enslave and abuse them today.

3. Imagine the World As It Should Be (and Work Towards It), Not the World As It Is. Do you imagine a world thriving with life, where climate change and the other environmental catastrophes have been mitigated? Then that world will materialize only if we have the courage to act as if we want to make that world happen.

We have the power to change our relationship with the world just through our daily actions. The Miglets are already leading this change!

For the Caterpillar has no choice but to become a Butterfly.

[61] From Kahneman, D, Thinking Fast And Slow, Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, Apr 2013, ISBN-13: 978-0374533557, http://amzn.to/IOzzcc

[62] http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/369-a-human-being-is-a-part-of-the-whole-called

[63] http://movies.disney.com/cinderella

5.7 Taking Off Our Blinders
6. Why Are We Here?
Climate Healers
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