Apr Jun 2010

Apr Jun 2010
Towards Ecological Sanity


Our theme for this issue of Bhoomi is ‘Towards Ecological Sanity’. We have, after all, been insane in numerous ways. Fossil fuels, industrialization, consumerism are some obvious examples that come to mind. If we scratch the surface some more, we realize that there are many compulsions we have acquired collectively, which have got the stamp of public and global approval.

Mankind’s intimacy with nature and his quest for beauty seem to have been food for the soul since time immemorial. The ability to visualize, to imagine, to use one’s head and hands and feel intuitively about forms of nature and materials around us has led to expressions which are diverse, and has resulted in rich craft traditions all over the world.

We’ve been living beyond our means for a long time and now it’s blown up in our faces. The shock to the system from the near-collapse of our global banking industry has been traumatic. Even so, it will be nothing compared to the near-imminent collapse of the ecological systems on which we depend. And the two are intimately connected.

During the last few months of 2009, three major International Summits took place. There was a Food Summit in Rome, attended by about 60 Heads of State, the World Trade Organization’s UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) and the Copenhagen Summit, which the whole world has been talking about it as it deals with climate change.

A holistic worldview needs to be nourished - one which honors the principles of ecology, fosters each person’s unique potentials and weaves together a diverse, collaborative human community.

Milk, which was considered the perfect food, has now fallen from its pedestal.

In India, the land of Krishna, the cowherd-God, milk is sacred. Milk is used for worship in temples and as offering at prayer time in homes. Milk is equally venerated in other countries – notably the US and Holland, where the per capita consumption is the highest in the world.

The Credit crunch and the Nature crunch provide an opportunity to redesign our money system and our economies in such a way that we can restore the well-being of human community as well as the Earth Community.