In recent days and weeks, I’ve revisited “The Star Thrower” story. This story from Loren Eiseley’s 1969 book The Unexpected Universe was the subject of one of our earliest posts a decade ago. Its value remains true and unquestionable: If you base your choices on what is right, then what you do will make a difference.
I avoid mainstream news because of its intolerable political bias. The news source I review daily is the British newspaper The Guardian founded in 1821. Though considered “center-left,” it lacks the vitriolic bias that consumes every newspaper and news source in America, left or right.
The news area that I am most interested in is climate and the environment. Based on my research, we have taken the beautiful world we live in for granted and have put it on a path to destruction. We live in the Anthropocene Age when human activity has a significant impact on Earth’s climate and ecosystems. Sadly, humankind’s ‘significant impact’ has not been good.
As I sit and write, world leaders are gathering in Glasgow, Scotland for the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26. While I will not deny the importance of COP26, I am inclined to think it will be a two-week exercise in jaw-flapping. In the end, action is the only thing that matters. As is too often the case in today’s politically driven culture, what we say we will do and what we actually accomplish are not the same thing, and worse, what we accomplish is far less than what we said we would do, and inadequate to resolve the situation at hand, which brings me back to the star thrower…
The survival of the planet for our children’s children is at stake. Each of us has two choices
- We can shrug our shoulders and leave it to someone else, or
- We can be conscious of the situation and take action on our own
I suspect that most of us are ‘leaving it to someone else.’ That is a bad choice. It is not a choice we will live with; it is a choice our children’s children will die with.
We have only one acceptable choice. We must act, even if in some seemingly insignificant way like the star thrower.
Read, Listen, Digest, Research, Understand, Ask Questions, and above all
Become energy conscious. You may not be able to afford an electrical vehicle, but you can limit the number of unnecessary excursions you take in your gas-powered vehicle, and you can drive it more efficiently. You don’t need to accelerate from 0 to 60mph in 4 seconds.
You can adjust your thermostat so that your HVAC operates less.
You can limit and moderate your consumer habits.
You can limit your intake of meat, particularly beef.
You can conserve water.
Simple things that can make a difference.
Like the star thrower, I will not allow myself to be overwhelmed with things I cannot do, but I will seek out things I CAN do to protect this planet for my children’s children.