As the continuing coverage of the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico and the awkward dance made by corporate America with the environment continues, I am home here on the west coast watching whales migrate toward the Gulf of Alaska. I was sitting on the rocks at Rockaway Beach with two friends, David and Kathy as a young whale broke the surface just a little ways off shore amid the surfers. What a disconnect! Three thousand miles away from my Pacific perch a dead sea is emerging, from Texas to Florida. Should I care? It’s so far away and besides I live in California. I should be more interested in what team Lebron and his ego chooses to play for or that Lindsay Lohan is off to jail at the end of the month or that Michael Steele actually spoke the truth earlier this week. Cable news companies think I should.
Such frustration and vexing of the Spirit is probably not a good thing for someone my age. It keeps me on edge and lacking in compassion freezing me in my tracks so I don’t have the energy to act. We as a species have difficulty in being good stewards of this fragile planet of ours. So what’s the plan? The inertia I feel and frustration as to where to start can be ameliorated by taking a step back, clearing the mind and, of course shutting up so that the spirit can whisper some solutions and activities in my heart. Practical things I can engage in to improve the situation. The activity can be simply offering service to agencies that need bodies. Doesn’t sound very dramatic does it, nor does it seem to be making any difference? But, it does. Imagine if large groups of people felt moved in the same way and got involved with citizenry that absolutely need help. I wonder what could happen? Other issues like taxation and having a louder voice in government are important, but helping others experience all that this country can provide is longer lasting and in a selfish way, more rewarding.
I believe we have a collective responsibility to care for one another. A document written more than 200 years ago demands it. It is justice. Meanwhile back in the Gulf…in Genesis G-d gives the garden to humans, “…to cultivate and guard it” so our jobs are cut out for us. The best way to get us out of our funk, is to do something positive for somebody. It doesn’t have to be a big thing, just a thing. Clearing the mind it will clear the spirit and motivate me to get off my arse and do something to “cultivate” garden. It won’t suck up oil, but it will improve the garden.
Back at our beach the sun and the gentle wind making the scene pristine, the young whale slowly swims in a gentle circle before moving North.
And so it goes…