She has a power and grace that is loved and appreciated in some form by everyone which is particularly remarkable because she doesn’t communicate verbally. She doesn’t speak. Most don’t seem to think it’s necessary to hear from her. They’re content — even happy — that she won’t engage in a conversation. There are those, after all, who think that women should be seen not heard, what we used to think of children. She should sit back, be beautiful, and be available on demand when requested, when needed. She actually doesn’t make any manner of communication with us, not directly. But she manages to make quite an impression nonetheless.
She is a wonder to behold, a looker. Her attractiveness is so striking that she has been valued by some as merely a beauty, for looks alone. She does strike some amazing poses. She’s the most photographed female of all time. Photographers have built careers off of her image. When the lighting is right — Wowza. The first image captured of her in her entirety, in the raw, was in December 1968, and it’s the most published photo in history. But appreciating her for her beauty alone and not speaking up for her is simply not enough.
We occasionally — for some, often — enjoy more than her looks and additionally enlist her company. With an open mind, we can recognize our covenant with her. It’s unlikely you’ll comprehend how mind boggling fascinating and impressive she is or how much she needs us unless you spend quality with her. She’s available for your enlightenment every day of the year, free of charge or close to it — and by that, I don’t mean to cheapen her in any way. And in return, you will find your truest values and deepest roots. She feeds the soul and reminds us what matters most.
She has her splendors, which she presents to us in her mute way. Splendors that go beyond her looks. She provides resources, things we need. Amazing, precious things. If presented wonderful offerings, we should take them, yes? She has a way of creating seemingly endless supplies of bounty, and we can use these things. We like them. It’s no skin off her back to give these to us, or at least it didn’t start out that way. But we take, take, take. There’ll always be more, we are sure. There always has been, anyway. But these are unprecedented times. And there are so, so many of us now. Some of these ‘offerings’ are more and more difficult to ‘find’. We extract them from her depths. Those were for the taking too, right?
She employs an army of worker bees to keep her complex systems operational. We put many people to work in industries built around receiving her bounty. It’s good for the economy, they — we — say. She, with her helpers, quietly labor away to assure there will be something for all of us, working meticulously in ways that we can’t even begin to fully comprehend with our cognitive limitations. The same developed brains that typically make us so able and proud are the same ones that are largely clueless to the vastness of her abilities. Processes that seem automatic, that seem as if they will forever take place, are in jeopardy.
She doesn’t worry herself with these details. She has a full and active life. She seems happy, on most days, often with a sunny disposition. It appears she has things under control, that she’s able to handle any situation. There’s an assurance that anything can be thrown her way, and that she’ll take it in stride — either absorb it or deflect it, whichever is needed. She puts on a smile though we rape her in far off places and extract with self-righteousness. “We need energy for our lives,” we tell ourselves like drug addicts.
In this deplorable situation, the conditions have worsened. No longer in far off places where we don’t see the abuse, we now make Swiss cheese of populated areas causing exponential shakes and shivers down her spine. She’s able to operate within a broad range of variation but this is getting ridiculous. We can’t innately sense the difference ourselves, not the part that’s putting her under intolerable stress. The atmosphere has become a lethal gas chamber to her, because of us and our taking. Experts have told us so. But we don’t listen. No human has ever lived here with CO2 levels even remotely close to these. We’re addicted to the take. Our world is built with man-made steel, but we are seeing — or will see — that it’s just a house of cards in this metastasized sphere of a body.
The truth is that the masses don’t even stop to consider this situation.
Don’t. Even. Stop. To. Consider.
Flora and fauna are passing at rates a thousand times higher than history has ever shown us. She’s trying to maintain her composure while the symphony of life passes on. There will be no vocal indication from her, but there are unprecedented signs. You’ve heard of her temper tantrums, maybe even experienced them firsthand. The downpour of tears wash over us, flood our dwellings in sudden flashes. The oceans are filled with her hot tears. Her worker bees are dying off, the corals bleached white. The struggle is there but you have to take off the blinders and unplug your ears — la, la, la, la, la — to get beyond the daily grind to see the big picture. When relationships blare on year after year, decade after decade, seemingly for eons — they tend to get stuck in a rut. We need to change but we don’t want to. We are creatures of bad habits.
We can’t comprehend, many of us, that we have the ability to hurt her. She started out with the upper hand. Her power and force were to be reckoned with. We learned how to keep safe from her cyclical mood changes. We built controlled boxes to live within to keep out her extreme elements and life-threatening powers. We started out with a dutiful appreciation for her, perhaps it was based on fear. We’ve literally changed the landscape and turned the tables. But she ultimately has and always will have the upper hand. Can’t we find our way back to living in harmony?
We inflict our ways — all seven and half billion of us — upon her now to such a degree that it’s a major problem. She makes do. She more than makes do. She’s going to be fine in the end — this is a matter of ourselves. She’ll reinvent herself, put on a new face. She will go on regardless. Others will come forth and when I say this I mean post-humankind. There will be unimaginable beings beyond our comprehension with biological makeups not yet seen from the stardust — science fiction novels made real. Maybe the next ones will have better manners, treat her right, treat her like a respectable woman — court her, appreciate her, even love her. Or she can live on her own, she doesn’t need a man or romance. But couldn’t we stay here longer first? Must we be shown the door and forced to leave?
We could, and should, try to make things right again. It’s a relationship we have with her after all and it’s worth fighting for. Corporations — made up of self-interested citizens — are given rights, as though they were humans. But not her. With a vengeance, rights are sought for fetuses with their finite cells, but not this living, oxygenated, here-and-now, omnipotent, visible Goldilocks. We worry about cancers and guns and jobs and education, but none of that will matter without a stable environment.
Maybe you’ve always understood her, appreciated her, even spoken out for her. But we must affect things on the systemic level. There’s a greater overarching mentality that drives our relationship with her — the group mentality, the gang mentality — and that needs a major attitude adjustment, along with fundamental tweaks in the way we build our lives. These foundational changes will largely be invisible in day-to-day life. But we can do this. We must affirm our value of her and show respect for her. Can we convince the larger whole that she’s worth it? She has no voice. She needs yours. She’s much more than Mother Earth, she’s our sister, our aunt, our girlfriend, our confidant, our healer, our provider, our source… she is us. Are we worth saving?