To Care or Not To Care

Mother Nature is a powerful and wonderful thing. So much so that, we as citizen of the world, should do everything in our power to save it. Or should we ?

It is accepted by scientist that Earth is around 4.5 billion years old. In her lifetime, it has gone through five major mass extinction episodes, which has wiped out most of the living organisms on its surface each time. Some of those organisms have survived through all of them, but that is not the point of this article. What is the point of this rambling, you ask ?

What has prompted this article was reading the article [2] on how the Great Barrier Reef shows signs of adaptation to the warmer waters of Australia, which did not surprise me at all. As an evolutionist, I believe (or know for a fact ?) that things a continually changing and evolving. But what really caused me to react is the fact that a lot of people talk and write on how we should be blamed for wrecking nature and not helping her in return. I can’t help but reply to these people: “Mother Nature is 4.5 billion years old and can, and will, take care of herself. We should be worrying about ourselves.” We should stop pretending that global warming will eventually kill Earth (It might kill all of us, yes!). Which is probably what we are doing subconsciencly.

I am not opposed to the people devoting their lives to saving life on earth, heck I am!, but I wish to make sure that we have the right intentions in mind. Saving Mother Nature and Earth, however noble it may be, might be a goal that we will never really achieve (and might mean wasted energy). My thoughts, therefore, on the subject is to enjoy Earth as it is right now, lose the wasting habits, start recylcing, and stop fooling ourselves about our role in Earth life cycle. Let’s preserve nature as we like it and enjoy it as much as possible.

In the meantime, here is a quote I appreciate from an article [1] that you should read:“The disappearance of our planet is still 7.5 billion years away, but people really should consider the fate of our world and have a realistic understanding of where we are going,” said UW astrophysicist Donald Brownlee. “We live in a fabulous place at a fabulous time. It’s a healthy thing for people to realize what a treasure this is in space and time, and fully appreciate and protect their environment as much as possible.”

Referenced articles:
[1] ‘The end of the world’ has already begun;
[2] Hope for coral as oceans warm;


One thought on “To Care or Not To Care

  1. The saga revolving around the role of humanity on earth, and more generally in life, is far from coming to an end. In addition to being a scientific question, it has political, economical and philosophical ramifications. That explains, at least partially, why this question is not about to get answered anytime soon.

    However, it is a healthy thing to be asking ourselves continuously: What is our role as humans in the greater scheme of things? And the answer to the question is that we do not know. As a matter of fact, a scientist once said if you’re not finding answers to your questions, you’re probably asking the wrong questions. There is great wisdom in those words… And, more importantly, possibly a lead to solving the problem at hand.

    What if the old earth-versus-humans paradigm was wrong? What if there was no dichotomy between earth and its inhabitants? What if we were, like the chimpanzees, the worms, and the trees, part of the biosphere of planet earth? Then the problem is no longer if we humans can destroy planet earth but rather if the earth biosphere has enough resources to absorb everything the human ingenuity (or stupidity?) can throw at it!

    Indeed, earth is going nowhere. It was there for 4.5 billion years and it will (most likely) be around for another 7.5. So the issue of humans destroying earth is a romanticized rhetorical question that is quite sterile for those looking for answers. Humans possess barely enough firepower to offset the course of a small asteroid, let alone destroy an entire planet! Even if we had the firepower and we actually decided to unite, we would first have to agree on far too many things to actually get through with it. So planet earth is not really endangered.

    On the other hand, there’s earth’s biosphere. Now, are humans naïve enough to wreck havoc in the earth’s biosphere? Yes. We are naïve enough. And we are disturbing earth’s biosphere fragile equilibrium. Another question is: does the biosphere have the necessary resources to counterbalance human’s unawareness? I hope so. But it would be too easy to count on that. It would allow humans to, once again, shovel their responsibility based on nature’s great strength. The fact of the matter is that “respect” and “responsibility” are two cornerstones in evolution. Nature makes “responsible” choices, killing off the weak to insure a healthier gene pool, for example. It will never choose to spare a baby antelope from the jaws of a leopard just because it’s so darn cute. Our capabilities of ignoring logical and optimal solutions to everyday problems is a huge component of the problem. Our emotions is also a big component of the problem. This is not to say that we should be inhuman and emotionless. The fact that we are emotionally charged “simply” requires of us that we be more responsible with respect to the choices we make.

    This article hasn’t shed a lot of light on the solutions to the numerous questions it poses but at least it serves as a warning. Humans have a great tendency at categorizing everything into little boxes and making these little boxes interact. The world cannot always be separated likewise and sometimes the answer lies in the whole. “Divide and conquer” works fine when attacking an earthly kingdom, but the kingdom of science is populated by knowledge. And dividing knowledge does not guarantee understanding. Rather, it needs to be shared, nurtured, and passed on to future generations to insure humanity’s legacy. Plundering and raping is effective to conquer land, but what happens when the only land left to live on is the one that has been conquered?

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