“I have a dream” is perhaps one of the most instantly recognisable speeches of the twentieth century, but apart from that I’ve known little about Martin Luther King. So I was delighted to discover he was an ecological thinker. Ahead of his time? or revealing universal truths?
Along with his well-known worldview of prophetic Christianity, interconnection and interdependence were central to his thinking, and consistent themes in his rhetoric. King saw reality as an interlacing network of relationships, viewed the nations and peoples of the planet as one, and linked various social injustices, saying, “All of these problems are tied together.” “One cannot be concerned just with civil rights. It is very nice to drink milk at an unsegregated lunch counter—but not when there’s Strontium 90 in it.”
via Martin Luther King Jr – Ecological Thinker :: drew dellinger.
In the 70s, Gary Snyder – the ‘poet laureate’ of Deep Ecology – was working in California Governor Jerry Brown’s administration. One day Brown, exasperated, asked
“Gary, why is it that, whatever the issue, you are always going against the flow?”
“Jerry what you call ‘the flow’ is just a 16,000 year eddy, I’m going with the actual flow!”
[Source: various versions of this floating around the web]
Iain Woodhouse, a colleague at the University of Edinburgh, has produced a charming short video to explain the concept of ecosystem services to his son:
Take a look at the video, it makes some great points in only 90 seconds.
Go on, watch it now, before you read on. (It does have sound!) Continue reading “Ecosystems and the stories we tell ourselves”
From the place where we are right, flowers will never grow in spring.
The place where we are right, is hard and trampled like a yard.
But the doubts and loves dig up the world – like a mole – a plough.
And a whisper will be heard in the place where the ruined house once stood.
by Yehuda Amichai
Thanks to Laurence D’Marco of Senscot who describes Israeli poet Yehuda Amichai as a compassionate humanist in a country driven mad by religion.
In spite of current ads and slogans, the world doesn’t change one person at a time. It changes as networks of relationships form among people who discover they share a common cause and vision of what’s possible. This is good news for those of us intent on changing the world and creating a positive future. Rather than worry about critical mass, our work is to foster critical connections. We don’t need to convince large numbers of people to change; instead, we need to connect with kindred spirits. Through these relationships, we will develop the new knowledge, practices, courage, and commitment that lead to broad-based change.
Not only an interesting article, but also a good explanation of that important, but often confusing, concept of ’emergence’.