life-sustaining society


So many of us have lived our lives placing unmerited value on the opinions of others while discrediting our personal truth and reality.  Breaking the shackles of people-pleasing requires honest self-appraisal, a healthy dose of self-esteem, and an enormous commitment to self-realization.  


“If there is to be a livable world for those who come after us, it will be because we have managed to make the transition from the Industrial Growth Society to a Life-Sustaining Society. . . . While the agricultural revolution took centuries and the Industrial revolution took generations, (the Great Turning) has to happen within a matter of years. It also has to be conscious—involving not only the political economy, but the habits, values and understandings that foster it.” —Joanna Macy – Pace e Bene

Can we do that?  We, who have been the most voracious consumers of this earth’s resources, who have built an empire on the backs of slave and immigrant labor, who have tilted the political process in favor of the corporate elite, who have widened the gulf between the prosperous and the poor, who have thumbed our noses at environmental consciousness….can we do that?  Not over the course of centuries or generations, but within a few years we must make our decisions.  Can we build a life-sustaining society which honors the entirety of creation?beard-beggar-face-35015


a sacred earth ?


“One of the reasons we’re destroying the planet is that it has lost its sacred dimension for us. The planet as given to us by science is a physical reality essentially meaningless in itself. It’s a resource for our physical activity.”

—Thomas Berry, Dream of the Earth

Centuries ago science overtook faith as reality.  The wisdom of the ancients tied the sacredness of our earth and of nature to a power beyond the understanding and reasoning of mankind.  But man’s arrogance demanded an answer to all questions and the discovered explanations which they accepted denied the sacredness of Creation.  The earth has become just another vehicle for our selfish endeavors.



photo of path in between woods during autumn
Photo by Artem Saranin on


Years ago when living in Pennsylvania, it was a short Sunday afternoon drive to the mountaintops of the state’s share of the Appalachian Trail.  An autumn trip on interstate 81 provided spectacular color and views of the surrounding countryside.

Unfortunately easy access to this mountain interstate also provided to the city of Philadelphia an inexpensive place to dump their garbage and to international corporations cheap land for construction of gigantic distribution centers.  Landfills and warehouses began to dot the views along the roadway.

Strip mining for coal also became more profitable because of the interstate access.  It was cheaper and easier than the shafts and tunnels of traditional mining.  Huge gouges appeared in the previously pristine landscape.  Pennsylvania was not the only victim as other states such as West Virginia suffered the same pillage and rape.

I receive newsletters from YES MAGAZINE via e-mail.  Today’s mailing details the recovery efforts of one such mining area in West Virginia.  Dedicated environmentalists, enlisting local residents facing unemployment due to a decline in coal mining, are attempting to build farm communities over the filled-in mines and covered-over landfills where the devastation occurred during the past decades.

Granted, it’s an economic undertaking to improve the lives of local residents, but can we also see these works as acts of love directed to restore our Creator’s creation? Love is not only for mankind, but for every mountain, every river, every forest, every tree, every creature put here for our enjoyment and need.

“I brought you into a fertile land to eat its fruit and rich produce.  But you came and defiled my land and made it detestable.”  JEREMIAH 2:7

Scroll to the bottom of the page provided above in the YES MAGAZINE link for a free subscription to their newsletters.

paid in full

So many of us have lived our lives placing unmerited value on the opinions of others while discrediting our personal truth and reality.  Breaking the shackles of people-pleasing requires honest self-appraisal, a healthy dose of self-esteem, and an enormous commitment to self-realization.


Have you ever considered what a small speck each of us is in the evolvement of mankind?  I prefer the word evolvement over evolution because religion, particularly some brands of Christianity, have given evolution a black eye over the past few centuries.  Evolution or creation – why would I choose to take an untenable position over my origins, whether from apes or space travelers or divine creation, when my current situation is that today in this moment I have breath and heartbeat?  What more do I need?  That in itself is more miracle than I can fathom and process.  Billions, no trillions, of souls have existed before me and to think that in this lifetime I will be able to figure it all out is ludicrous and time-wasting.

An appreciation of this personal existence begins with a place of reverence for all of life.  Not just human form, but everything – animal, plant, fish, rock, soil, sandy beaches, high mountains, the depths of the sea and the atmosphere above us are all part of this earth’s ecology.  Not one part is more important than the other – that is reverence for life.

No man/woman on this earth’s face deserves more than any other.  No privilege, wealth, social status, political importance or religious demeanor will make an iota of difference in the final disposition of this life.  You and I, Raj and Muhammad, fish and fowl, male and female, black and white, Christian and Muslim will return to the dust from which we came.  Professions of faith, works of goodness, hours of solitude, bended knees in prayer, protests of social action, dedication to political justice will not matter one bit a million years from the year 2020 on this earth.

So what’s all the hoopla about today?  Why the fuss?  Remember the miracle of breath and heartbeat that I mentioned earlier?  That’s it!  I have dues to pay to breathe, share the air, walk this planet.  Those dues include making a difference for another person, a difference for the tiger in the jungle, a difference for the water in the oceans, a difference for the trees in the rainforest.  Living from a place of reverence for life demands that when my last breath escapes my lungs and my blood stops flowing I have done my utmost to leave this earth unscathed by my presence.

Words attributed to a man of great wisdom centuries ago said, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”  MATTHEW 25  I trust that those words were meant to apply to every aspect of loving and revering this planet.

As for the planet on which I have lived, I hope my demise will prompt an earthlycropped-pride7.png farewell, “Thank you.  Dues paid in full.”

I   AM   LARRY – worthy, unique, loved

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