Mind Matters — Who Will Inherit the Earth?

April 22nd marked the passing of Earth Day,. With all the noise in the news, Mother Earth may have gotten short shrift this year. I did not do anything momentous to celebrate the day. So what do I do for Mother Earth otherwise?

Living in a quasi-urban environment, we no longer have a compost bin in our backyard. In fact, we no longer have a backyard, and not really a front yard either. However, we do have a “garbage to garden” service that picks up our scraps for composting. We are also reconfiguring our postage stamp land to be more rain efficient, adding a small rain garden and rain barrels to the side of our house. We have planted native trees such as river birch and redbud and we hope the other native plantings we do will be a haven for the birds and the bees and the insects that nourish them.

So, what does “Earth Day” mean anyway? Ever think about what you want to bequeath to your children (or grandchildren)? I have always had the sense of what is given to me needs to be improved upon not only for me but for my children and grandchildren—for all descendants. Even beyond my own DNA, there is a desire of acting for the betterment of the earth, the common good. there is a sense of needing to improve and not destroy whatever environment I inhabit. Wanting to create, sustain, and enhance life is what we’re all about.

Spring comes and we take heart in the cherry blossoms and forsythia and daffodils. Life returns. Of course, winter teems with life too. Hibernation of the roots and seeds being the invisible active time.

Point is, the earth is constantly working on our behalf, no matter the season. Question is, what do we do in return? What do we do, not only for the Earth, but for the future of our children and their children? Maybe it is a weak analogy, but I don’t believe I have ever lived in a house where I have not cared for it and done something to make it better for its next inhabitants. I have always taken pride in passing on a place in better condition than when we began living in it. What if we took that attitude towards the earth? Why not look at our Mother Earth, Gaia, as our house which we need to pass on to future generations in better shape than when we lived in it? What would change if we had that attitude of care and responsibility?