Way #19: The Earth is Alive
Today you are invited to open yourself up to the radical notion that our planet is actually alive: a living, breathing entity we have the privilege of calling home.
Why Do This Way?
“When you really see the truth of things, you realize life is a net where all forms of life are connected. This net is the only thing that is important. Indigenous people always feel and express gratitude for being part of this net of life.”
- Manari Ushigua, leader of the Sápara Nation
For millennia, indigenous people have connected to the Earth as a living being, one deserving of respect, love, and attention. Remembering this worldview can not only powerfully inform our orientation towards global warming and climate change, but it offers a balm to the deep sense of alienation many people in the modern world experience.
It allows a genuine connection to grief at rampant environmental destruction—deforestation and the death of coral reefs, the pollution of rivers and oceans, mountaintop removal...
Considering the Earth as a living being gives us the opportunity to act from a place of caring for a loved one, and access to the kind of creativity and commitment to act that only life can inspire.
Engaging with This Way
In this video, Charles Eisenstein, author of the newly released Climate: A New Story, offers a perspective on climate change consistent with indigenous wisdom: that by protecting the forests, oceans, rivers, mountains, wetlands, and soil of the planet we are actually protecting the organs of a living entity. Conversely, pollution and environmental destruction are actually assaults on a living Earth.
Charles elaborates on his thinking about a new story of climate in this recently released essay, Initiation into a Living Planet.
How would your relationship with all of nature shift if you related to Earth as a living being?