The Native Americans cared about the land that they lived on. They had to. They learned that to live on a land, you had to live with the land. The land was a part of them. If the land was hurt, if the air and water were hurt, if the animals were hurt, then they would hurt with them. The secrete to saving the earth was Care, the very lesson that the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of God upon him, taught.
The religion of Islam also teaches that God created us from clay. He commanded the angels to go down to the earth and gather soils from all the different parts of the earth to make the mud that would eventually become the first human being, Adam, peace and blessings of God upon him. And so the angels came back with soils of differing hues, black, brown, white, red, and yellow. It was then mixed from water from the seas to make the mud and then God breathed life into it.
It is not by coincidence that the salinity of our blood is exactly that of sea water. It is not coincidence that we are approximately made up of 80% water and 20% flesh, which happens to be the same proportions as the make up of the earth, 80% water and 20% land! The earth is our Mother.
Further, God put us on the Earth to live and placed signs for us in the Earth that would indicate who He is. It is by these signs that we will recognize who God is and worship Him. He gave us the sun by which we can see. We can use the sun to tell time during the day. We learn how to use our shadows to determine the required times of prayer. We gain the understanding that time is an ephemeral quantity that runs out. We only have a fixed amount of time each day to do what it is that we need to do. The day begins and the day ends. Telling time by the sun keeps us intimately aware of this fact, unlike the circular reciprocating nature of a clock where time never ends, but just continues to repeat itself.
He gave us the moon to keep track of time over the year. Few cultures still use the moon exclusively to measure the time of the year. The Muslims still do however, for the most part. They use the moon to mark the beginning and end of the month of Fasting and also to determine the time for the Hajj, or Pilgrimage to Mecca.
He gave us the stars as fixed beacons in the night sky to help in finding our way on the land and on the sea at night. And Muslims use the stars to orient themselves in the direction of Mecca when they perform their prayers.
The problem at hand is that humans are no longer a part of the creation. All of the above examples, and many more exist, show that humans can be an integral part of the creation, benefiting from as well as contributing to it. We, by our own inventions, have removed ourselves from experiencing a wholeness with the rest of creation. We have become infected with the disease of loving material wealth so completely that we can no longer see the signs in the very world that was created for us.
We need to stop and recognize our mother. We are in a state of darkness and we cannot see where we are, where we are going and where we came from. We need to move into the light of knowledge, the knowledge that we can only obtain from our Mother. God says in the Quran, in many verses, that He has placed in the earth, signs for us that will move us from the darkness into the light. The first sign that we need to recognize is to recognize who our mother is. Just like when an infant is born into this world. The first thing that the infant will recognize is his or her mother. After coming out of the darkness of the womb into the light of the world, it is the mother from which the infant emerged that will be first recognized. So we need to recognize our mother. And just like our human mother, who taught us how to eat, sleep, crawl, walk, speak, and learn, the earth, our spiritual mother can do the same if we care to learn from her. However, we cannot learn from our mother if we fail in taking care of her.
If we want to save the world, if we want to protect and preserve the beauty of our Mother, then we need to take care of her. For without her, we are lost and we can never find our way. And if we don't take care of her she will perish and us with her.