During the lunar eclipse on April 15th, as the shadow of Earth passed across the Moon, a strange quiet coincided with silent motion. While darkness crept over the Earth, silence reigned among its nonhumans. We had a front seat view of the luminary passage--didn't even need technology to enhance our experience.
Eastern conceptions of time are based upon looking backwards. This backwardness has helped preserve many a thousand-year historic temple from complete ruin; protected watersheds from drainage; located housing in town villages; people didn't mind walking several miles to reach their farms. Eastern celebrations of Nature are reflected in a myriad of ink-brush paintings.
However today ancient cultures continue to be assaulted by the West. Addicted to buying this or that, ethnically craven, sexualized, and militarized populaces are enslaved by contradictory impulses and compulsions rather than motivated to protect the Earth in accord with traditions.
Georgetown teens talk about "being K-12 good" as a joke, while private campuses are hashtags for animalism, competition, envy, and academic hunger games. Compliments are depopulated by insults.
Broadcast T.V. stations, dependent on artificial satellites floating above Earth, ironically make obsolete the number and presence of Nature shows.
Does the West's tendency to denigrate Nature originate from the Bible? It is recorded in Genesis:
And God said, 'And now we will make human beings; they will be like us and resemble us. They will have power over the fish, the birds, and all animals, domestic and wild, large and small.'
Human dominion over the fish, the birds, and all the wild animals, and by extension, over vegetation and the environment has become so pernicious that the mainstream media culture has all but outlawed discussions on the root causes of overpopulation and dire future consequences.
Commercial mainstream media as culture means the number of shows focusing on crime, violence, sex, drugs, and music celebrating such has exploded since the early 1980s, coinciding with the corporate take-over of the music industry; subsumed within the big six.
Keep the public mesmerized and sedated by mind-numbing, morally ennervating entertainment and they will not worry about being underinformed, false dilemmas, and other distractions designed to conceal, for instance, the magnitude of problems or ineptitudes in governments.
The few independent major media left in the world are a boon to humankind; there can be Truth, Benevolence, and Beauty, as seen at DaAi Buddhist T.V. station overseas. Students who revere Nature learn to reject the call of the taxidermist, and allow the phoenix to survive unmolested. People who respect themselves foster dreams of noble opportunities to love with their lives their towns as their own, thereby becoming free of over-propagating in order to feed themselves.
Spectacular astronomical drama such as the lunar tetrad of 2014-15 are left relatively untouched by mainstream news maybe because of the magnitude in recent cutbacks on observatories: another casualty in exchange for more security cameras and war-time weapons for the civilian police.
Of course the wasteful ways of the West do have their counterparts; Asian slums are the developments of solid waste imported from abroad, but also increasingly, as in China, stem from rapidly rising rates of disposable purchases--along with associated plastic junk.
There are groups who are trying to rein in the throw-away habits of fast-paced lifestyles. Tzu Chi organization around the world logs in millions of hours a year in volunteer recycling programs. In Singapore, litter patrol volunteers can even issue warrants for littering, even though persuasion may be more the name in the game. In Japan, Greenbird is an international movement to "keep clean, keep green" by trashpicking even along fashionable streets and boulevards.
Maybe the concept of a peaceful heart and mind, emanating from oneself towards family and community together with environmentalism, is quietly growing. In Sweden "every citizen meticulously separates his/her household waste and recycles appropriately." The European Union has even set target in household waste production at 300 Kg per capita per year.
The views expressed in this social commentary are those of the author in reflection only.