The earth is in pain. We are hurting it. We poison its water. We choke its air. We cut it limbs and we slash into its flesh. For all that we do to the Earth, it still takes care of us by the sky sending down its life giving rain, the fields still give their nourishing foods and trees still provide us with shade and the air we breath. For some the earth is an inanimate object held in check by the laws of nature that govern how everything works. For others, this author included, see the earth as a living and interactive organism that has a spirit and purpose.
There are a set of verses in the Qur’an, the text that Muslims believe was revealed by the Creator to guide humanity to what is ultimately their only success, that speaks of the Earth. They mean as follows.
When the Earth is shaken with her final earthquake.
And the Earth yields up her burdens.
And man says “What is the matter with her?”
That day she will proclaim her tidings.
Because your Lord inspired her.
That day mankind will come forth in scattered groups to be shown their deeds.
And whoever has done a bit of good will see it then.
And whoever has done a bit of ill will see it then.
Its a weighty set of verses. They frighten me. But more than that they help me check myself with regards to what I do to and on the Earth. I not only consider the Earth my home, but my companion in life and the physical source of what I need to stay alive. It is my spiritual center and from which I learn many important things regarding how to live in peace with the Earth itself as well as with my fellow humans. It is my teacher. It has a persona that we all recognize, for do we not call her Mother Earth?
Everyone can learn from the Earth if we just open our eyes to what it has to teach. For millennial the Earth has taken care of us. It saddens me that we do not reciprocate that care in kind today. It seems that in past generations we, as humans, understood the necessity of mutual care between us and the Earth. That what was good for the Earth was ultimately good for us as well. Today we seem to have lost our way in that respect. We have become selfish, arrogant and blind that our actions, even though appearing self-serving, are in reality harmful to the Earth and to our own existence.
Faith and belief are sensitive topics, I know, but what if the Earth truly does have a memory. A memory so sharp that it will tell all about what we individually have done on her back. That it will stand as witness against us on that final day and bear a testimony that no matter what we do we cannot deny. Which group do you wish to be among - those who have done good or those who have done ill?
I wonder if the Earth ‘looks’ at us and is saddened by what it must do to us to rectify its unbalanced state and return to equilibrium. I think it will rid us, or most of us in the process. I think it knows that and I wonder if it is crying black tears over it?
Just some food for the mind to chew on.