I didn’t sleep much last night. Just one of “those nights” where, in spite of feeling exhausted when I retired, I awakened wide-eyed and refreshed … at 1:30 AM. Ah, well.

I did what I always do when this happens: I read, practiced relaxation meditation, roamed around in my thoughts, and petted the dog, who is extremely generous in this regard. I figure my body knows what it needs — and what it doesn’t. If I’m not sleepy right now, I will be later. This I learned in my twenties, when I was plagued by insomnia, and the approach continues to serve me well as sleepless nights become more frequent in my later years. I think of it as found time and try to use it respectfully.

Part of last night’s musings sprung from watching The Corporation for the second time, and from reading Genesis Farm’s latest newsletter cover article. [If you’re not on their mailing list, by all means sign up. And participate. And contribute.) Both sources call our culture into question.

We are a nation of plunderers.

We are certainly not alone, as nations go, but we lead the way in many of the most destructive practices in existence today. I keep telling myself we aren’t bad people, we’re just unconscious. But our Community facilitator constantly reminds us: “that which is unconscious is unjust”. I have yet to be able to prove her statement wrong.

“Just unconscious” is not an excuse, and it’s a sorry explanation. In service of our own desires, we are pushing all of Earth’s life systems into steep decline. I don’t mean for this blog to be a scolding, or a warning, or a judgment. I have spent most of my own fifty-plus years contributing to Earth’s demise, and I know speaking from arrogance is self-serving and worse than useless.

We might try asking ourselves if there is a way to live differently.

I think we begin to make necessary changes not through action but through passion. As in Christ’s passion, where Jesus submitted himself to judgment and death without seeming to stand up for his rights. He was trying to show people what it means to live differently, to step away from destructive ways of being, such as slavery, discrimination, and exclusion. Two thousand years ago, no one could possibly have imagined what is happening on Earth today. Yet Jesus tried every way he could to teach us to live with compassion and respect for all of God’s creation, to love with such intensity that one would sacrifice the self in order to reveal the Self of creation and possibility. Jesus was trying to set us free.

If we were to practice passion ourselves, we would have to back off from our impress on the Earth. At this point, we’d better be backing up pretty far and pretty fast, because there really isn’t much time left.

Pay attention to what you buy, what you use, what you discard and leave for others to deal with. What is your personal impress on Mother Earth? That should give you an idea where to begin in your own life, which is the only thing you can really change anyway.

We live in bondage to a life of consumerism and competition. The first steps to freedom are exciting. Take a few today.

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