A few days ago, the papers warned that Europe is facing the worst drought in 500 years. They described the dry and hot weather and the fires that broke out all over the continent and spoke of an apocalypse. Today, they are reporting flooding in London and violent storms in France causing catastrophic flooding, where in some places, more than an inch of rain fell in less than 30 minutes, and in Paris, a storm with 65 mph wind gusts and nearly 2 inches of rain that fell in just 90 minutes flooded the Metro. Clearly, the climate has gone mad.
However, the climate did not go awry by itself, but because of our madness. Nature’s erratic behavior merely reflects our own agitation toward everything. Our growing narcissism drives us to treat everyone and everything with utter indifference to the needs of others. In fact, we even enjoy hurting others. We think that if we can use others and not see the consequences for our actions right away then there are no consequences, but there are very serious consequences for our wrongdoing toward others.
In the closed system that is the world we live in, everything we do affects everything else, and that effect returns to us like a boomerang. When we pour so much negativity into the system, it becomes dysfunctional, and this summer, we are experiencing this dysfunction through the smoldering heat waves and torrential rains. If we continue to flood the system with hatred and intolerance, we will not need nuclear weapons to wipe us out; plagues, natural disasters, fires, and floods will extinguish us long before we extinguish each other.
When the summer is gone, winter will come with its own perils, and lack of gas and power will wreak havoc in Europe. Eventually, we will have to accept that we cannot defeat nature; we cannot outsmart it. We will have to learn to be an integral part of nature, connected to each other and to nature. We will not survive otherwise.
Since the only element in nature that has bad intentions and an exploitative attitude toward others is us, we must begin to change our relationships. Our attitude toward the rest of nature stems from our attitude toward each other. Therefore, if we are considerate toward each other, we will be considerate toward nature. It turns out that the correction of our tormented planet begins with the correction of our broken ties with one another.
To mend them, we must put our heads together and discuss solutions on a global level. These solutions must be inclusive and take into account everyone’s needs. At the same time, everyone must accept that they cannot receive more than is necessary, since they, too, must be considerate toward others.
To get such a global initiative off the ground, there needs to be an open discussion about it all over the global media. People must know that we really are running out of time, and unless we change now, it will be too late afterwards.
I do not know how to keep this move clean from politics and politicians, but it has to be a genuine effort to save humanity and the planet, not a ploy to take control of it. Perhaps a panel of scientists will be able to make this happen, but they, too, must work without ulterior motives.
I realize that this idea may sound naive, but I also realize that if we do not take global action to sincerely improve our connections, the approaching annihilation is certain and near.
A firefighter walks past the flames of a forest fire near Belin-Beliet. French officials have warned that the forest fire could spread further in the southwest of the country. Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH via Reuters