I will lift up my lift up my eyes to the hills … Psalm 121
David Gushee is a Christian ethicist, the president of Evangelicals for Human Rights and a scholar of the Holocaust. He has written a fascinating exploration of why an optimistic alliance of scientists and conservative Christians formed five years ago has had little success in raising concerns about what the human species is doing to the planet. You can read the whole thing. What follow are some excerpts from Gushee's observations:
A few comments of my own:
- Yes, unrestricted capitalism is literally a human-created cancer on the planet that will destroy our home. Can we overcome a disease that is so intrinsically human?
- When religious people became unable to read their informing texts metaphorically (and perhaps when highly educated secular people equally became dull to the power of myth and poetry), the human condition was radically impoverished. When we reduce being human to striving to defend ourselves from whatever threats we currently obsess about, we are already dead. There is a lot of death in contemporary civilization, literal death and metaphorical death.
- Mr. Gushee certainly describes poignantly his own disconnection from creation, from the unmediated natural world. I'm lucky. When asked what I would want to do if I weren't working, for many years I've had one simple answer: "go outside." Mostly I find it is easy to be alone out there -- go a quarter mile and the other humans are not to be seen. I'm fortunate; there are so many humans who don't have the opportunity or inner compulsion to visit the remaining less desecrated places.
H/t The Lead for the Gushee article.
Despite every other legitimate concern, we cannot ignore that our economic and social system is rapidly making the planet less habitable. So I will be posting "Warming Wednesdays" -- unpleasant reminders of an inconvenient truth.