The world converging around a conversation always presents a positive opportunity. Provided we truly reflect on what we are talking about and identify what really matters.
There is so much of heated opinion about Greta Thunberg, the individual. Those happy that climate change has been thrust into global consciousness look at her as an environmental crusader. Those probing her credentials to speak about climate change look at her as a spokesperson for the privileged class who damage most the climate they supposedly want to protect.
To focus on Greta Thunberg as an individual is to get stuck at the symbol. Consider what is at stake – the future of our planet. A hundred years from now, all the talk about Greta, the individual, is going to be a footnote in world history. What will be probed by discerning people looking back at our time is this – Amid all the talk, what was the action taken. Did communities and nations pick up the gauntlet and ask searching questions? Did people make the effort – to know and understand..to establish and verify..to decide and change? Yes, even those people who at this present juncture don’t believe anything like climate change is happening. To focus on what thought and action is needed is to move past the symbol and onto the substance.
In spiritual literature, the Masters speak about the Finger pointing at the Moon. They warn us that no matter how powerful and enticing the Finger is as it lights our path, we must not forget that it is not the Moon – the real destination. When we expend so much energy on eulogising or discrediting Greta, we are forgetting the Moon – the real destination. We are on track for the real destination when we step back from the black hole of circular rhetoric and strive to find – How clear and present is the danger posed by Climate Change. Are we reaching a point of no return. In what way am I contributing to Climate Change and what can I do about it.
Having consciously avoided knowing about Greta Thunberg,the individual, I looked out for an informed take on the subject of climate change. I saw this excellent documentary, Climate Change – the Facts, presented by David Attenborough. Can confidently assert based on the documentary viewing that climate change is for real and is a result of human choices. Record keeping of a century and more is weighing in on the subject. The documentary does an excellent job of connecting the dots and establishing the facts on the ground.
Everything that owes its existence and sustenance to a fossil-fuel economy has contributed to our world getting hotter and resulted in climate change. That includes the cell phone that we carry with us. This awareness is the first step. If we use public transport, we are helping reduce green house gas emissions. if we walk or cycle, we make the emissions zero. If we stop or reduce using Air conditioners, we help. I suspect we know most of these things. Can we bridge the knowing-doing gap, take action and begin? We can use this global conversation and it’s momentum to bridge that gap! If we move from awareness to acceptance, we are nearer to the point of taking action.
There is a message for all of us in the voices of these young people. It is after all their generation who will inherit this dangerous legacy. We now stand at a unique point in our planet’s history, one where we must all share responsibility both for our present well-being and for the future of life on Planet Earth. Every one of us has the power to make changes and make them now. Our wonderful natural world and the lives of our children, grandchildren and all those who follow them, depend upon us doing so.
– David Attenborough, Climate Change – The Facts