What to Do?? (when the sky is falling)

Is there any need to debate whether the sky is actually falling?? Surely not.

For my part, it’s not even just that the sky is falling, it’s also what’s in the sky as it falls. What’s in the air. Ever since Fukushima blew its lid (it’s still blowing its lid – go here if you want regular updates on what's going on over there), the idea of our being in the “end times” is so much more in my face than it was before March 11, 2011.

Okay. Well. So, some musings on what we do while the sky is falling.

I’m re-reading the novel The Cellist of Sarajevo (by Steven Galloway), & the character Dragan (on page 126), when asked why the cellist is risking his life every day to play his cello on the street in the spot where 22 people were killed while waiting at a bakery to buy bread, says to Emina, “Maybe he’s playing for himself. Maybe it’s all he knows how to do, and he’s not doing it to make something happen.” ‘And he thinks this is true. What the cellist wants isn’t a change, or to set things right again, but to stop things from getting worse. Because, as the optimist in Emina’s mother’s joke said, it can always get worse. But perhaps the only thing that will stop it from getting worse is people doing the things they know how to do.’”

Maybe that’s what all of us are doing? Trying to keep things from getting worse? So we’re all just keeping on doing what we know how to do??

Some of us know how to lie & cheat & rape & poison & pollute the Earth in sundry really outstanding ways – so we keep on doing that. (Oops. That is making it worse.)

Some of us – in the nuclear industry, say – know how to make big salaries (really, REALLY BIG salaries, in some cases(1)) creating & selling nuclear energy (all the while also making bomb ingredients as they do so) in uniquely Earth-destroying ways – & bafflegabbing & bullshitting & nukespeak-ing their way into convincing even people who really are smart enough to know better(2) that this is all fine & reasonable stuff to keep on doing, as our planet dies screaming all around us. (Oops. That's making it worse too.)

& some of us are very-very good at only paying attention to our very own little lives (which seem very-very BIG to us, of course), & wearing either rose-coloured glasses (or maybe dark blindfolds) & pretending nothing is happening – the Earth & our species are not being ravaged before our very eyes – & doing nothing whatsoever to help change this trajectory. (So sorry to repeat myself, but this too is making things worse.)

So that’s what they are going on doing

&…I’m running out of breath now so I’ll just say what I know how to do

which is

  • be a Mom
  • & an environmental activist
  • & a writer/blogger
  • & a person who walks every day 
  • & does fairly well at living “in the moment”
  • & remains ridiculously enthusiastic about sharing inspiring quotations
  • & occasionally feels fear & despair

 

as our beautiful planet is trashed within an inch of its life

& while the weather gets WEIRDER by the day (& the bees & frogs & sundry other creatures disappear)

& we all (or well, some of us, anyway) wait for yet more disaster to befall us all from the (unprecedented) nuclear disaster that is Fukushima

& the sky is falling

it’s been falling all my life, though I didn’t know that when I was a little kid, I had no idea how f*cked-up everything was…& is…& oh my oh my oh my oh my oh my

what are we do to while the sky is falling???

Janet

p.s. & we can change (I could write another day about the many small & bigger ways in which I as an individual have changed, proving that indeed we can change) or at least we could have chosen to change … only most of us apparently have not chosen this…

& it’s all really quite-quite heartbreaking, isn’t it???

p.p.s. & on our watch…

(Unless you believe we humans are about to be “transformed” – like my “spiritual” friends do. Sure hope they are right!!!)

p.p.p.s. somewhat dated post here is called 'What is a person to do??' Some good quotations & links there...

‘Quote of the day’ with this post:

Hieroglyphic Stairway 

it's 3:23 in the morning 
and I'm awake because my great great grandchildren 
won't let me sleep my great great grandchildren 
ask me in dreams what did you do while the planet was plundered?
 what did you do when the earth was unraveling?

 surely you did something when the seasons started failing? 
as the mammals, reptiles, birds were all dying?
 did you fill the streets with protest when democracy was stolen? 

what did you do 
once
 you 
knew?

drew dellinger
©2003

A Few Other Relevant Quotations:

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the one most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” – Charles Darwin

“The hard part about change, is, well…you have to actually change.” – Jon Cooksey, Director of ‘How to Boil a Frog’

“Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” – Apple marketing phrase (apparently)

“The world will change for the better when people decide they are sick and tired of being sick and tired of the way the world is, and decide to change themselves.” – Sidney Madwed (quoted in Speak Peace in a World of Conflict – What You Say Next Will Change Your World, by Marshall B. Rosenberg)

“I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better.” – Georg Lichtenberg

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” – George Bernard Shaw

“The hottest place in hell is reserved for those who, in times of crisis, preferred to remain neutral.” – Dante, in The Inferno

“You discover that others aren’t afraid of your pain for the world, and you witness theirs. Then you can dare to hope something for humanity and for what we can do together. When we unblock our despair, everything else follows – the respect and awe, the love.” – John Seed, rainforest activist (talking about despair & empowerment work)

** lots of quotations about change here

*** lots of quotations period here 

(1) For example, Mr. Albert Sweetnam of OPG (Ontario Power Generation), whom I encountered during the 2011 hearings on the proposed “new build” at Darlington, earns (or should I say is paid) $720,000 per year for his efforts. Look it up! (Mr. Tom Mitchell, OPG’s head honcho, is down for $1,824,000.04. You can look that up too).

(2) As S. David Freeman, former head of the Tennessee Valley Authority memorably said recently, “Anyone who would substitute plutonium for carbon is an idiot.”