Tuesday, January 7, 2014


I've always know I was sort of weird. I'm a searching Quaker reading the works of an Orthodox Jew, a Benedictine monk or two and a novelist who spent over a decade in a religious order and left before taking final vows. Go figure.

“Most of our attention is given to the expedient, to that which is conducive to our advantage and which will enable us to exploit the resources of our planet. If our philosophy were a projection of man’s actual behavior we would have to define the value of the earth as a source of supply for our industries, and the ocean as a fishpond.”

Rabbi Heschel wrote this back in the late forties. He died way too soon but I’m glad he didn’t live to see his prophetic words come true. Unfortunately we not only treat our oceans as a fishpond but as a cesspool. We treat the earth is if it were as disposable as our badly made appliances instead of as the spaceship it really it.

When we’ve drained the last aquifer, polluted the last river, cut down the last forlorn lonely oak, what do we do then? There’s no place to run, no place to hide. I have a great niece (if the scans were right anyway) due next month. I tremble for her future.

The old Lakota spoke only truth when they said that we don’t own the earth we borrow it from our children. And what will be left when that loan comes due?

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