We were recently having a discussion on sustainability and what were the basic elements that would create sustainability. One person thought that our technological advancement would be a major element by freeing people from mundane work. Another agreed because we could have clean, adequate housing with all the utilities in place and that would free us up more to create a sustainable world. When asked, “Now that you don’t have to grow your food or produce your housing or work for your utilities, what would you do with your time?” One person said they would have the time to create more ways to make the world sustainable. The other said they would travel and talk to people and teach sustainable living. Another person said, ‘What about your relationship to the land?’ Another responded with, ‘You could go and visit forests and parks and then come back to your clean and safe place to live. You would have the best of both worlds.
Granted these responses do not represent a wide range of thought but I think they speak for many people. For me the question is, ‘Is technology sustainable in any form?’ We know that many of the older forms of power and transportation lay a heavy burden on the earth. What about the newer forms of energy like solar and wind and water power? The materials needed to build the factories and the technologies are creating pollution and using up resources. How long do these technologies last and how do we get rid of the old ones? Are we caught in a cycle of do we pollute to create and pollute to recycle?
I think we are advancing in our evolution. I think we are going ahead in the right direction into an understanding of ourselves and each other and what it will take to manage this world sustainably. The appropriate answers as to exactly how to make the next leap may not be visible yet. I think that there are other questions we need to ask, like; what would the great mother want? How would the creatures like our lifestyles? How does the land itself feel about the ways we farm and live? How well will the people fare as they become more and more removed from the land and the animals?
I don’t think we are to abandon technology. I don’t think we are to abandon our relationship with the natural order of this world either. The answer can’t lie in bigger, better, faster. The answer has to embrace the gift of paradise we were given to LIVE IN. Put the people back on the land and create technology that does not destroy the land or the people. We have to restore paradise and learn to live in it not outside it, not cover it with concrete and buildings that don’t even allow fresh air to breathe and that turn people’s lives into robotic functions that make them sick and unhappy.
We can make this transition. We are meant to make this transition, but we will only be able to make it if we stay focused on the source of lives, the earth.