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Steps in the mirror, overwhelming challenge

Let’s take some time to breathe and consider simpler options

By Georges R. Dupras

There are those who do not share in the urgency, or even in any need to address global issues such as climate change, famine, waste, military incursion, broken families, loss of species and of habitats. These are deep-rooted problems that did not occur overnight, and correcting them isn’t going to happen anytime soon.

The present situation crept-up over the years, minute by minute, and before we knew it we found ourselves reacting desperately. Our first responses included the usual stages of denial, recrimination and the need for jobs.

I would submit that the only plausible approach is to advance the overall file in the same manner that brought us here.

If you see the futility in just assigning blame, you might wonder what, if anything, one person can do to reverse the trend. There are as many schools of thought on that, as there are opinions on how we got to this point in the first place.

I would submit that the only plausible approach is to advance the overall file in the same manner that brought us here. True, there are species, even human populations, hovering on the brink that will require extraordinary measures for their survival.

Overwhelming challenge (step by step)

Our conditioning is such that man has little faith in any strategy that is too obvious. Comments such as, “If it were that easy, why hasn’t it been done, or why don’t you tell me something I don’t already know”. These remarks bear repeating because we simply don’t act on those things we do already know.

‘Scientific research, that has not been politicized… and the recognition that all species are equal in value, should be a significant part of any approach to protect the natural environment, and by extension mankind.’

We tend to over-complicate life. Other than the exception of man’s greed, nature has the unique ability to balance its numbers. We put entirely too much faith in government science that appears to have been packaged by public relation firms well versed in the art of illusion and misdirection.

Keep it simple

Scientific research, that has not been politicized (read: politically packaged), and the recognition that all species are equal in value, should be a significant part of any approach to protect the natural environment, and by extension mankind. Keep the plan simple, measurable and fun if possible. Don’t get sidetracked by searching for unrealistic results – seek options that can adapt to changing times, rather than solutions already obsolete. Before descending in to the sinkhole of helplessness, I offer 9 simple steps for those wanting to be a part of real change:

  1. Do nothing, take time to think, to meditate, to pray, to forget “what” you are, and become “who” you are (mirror of your soul).
    .
  2. Recognize your personal motives – when looking in the mirror, who’s looking back? If you can answer that one in the immediate, then you are an exceptional human being.
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  3. Live a more coherent lifestyle – know your carbon footprint. Try to be a part of the environment, not apart from it.
    .
  4. Recognize that you are the problem and can be a large part of the solution.
    .
  5. Know that you will be inconsistent. The only consistent people on this planet reside in cemeteries.
    .
  6. Respect yourself. If you don’t, why should anyone else?
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  7. Learn to hear what people are saying. Listening and hearing are not the same – nor is talking and actually saying something.
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  8. Respect other opinions. Speak softly without surrendering your values. Avoid confrontation – it accomplishes nothing.
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  9. Know the human carrying capacity of your country.

Conclusion

We are facing crossroads and serious decisions are in the offing. Personal values aside, our present socio-economic course may well be politically pragmatic, and remain so for decades to come. As for the long term, I believe history will be far less kind to our present-day mindsets.

‘… do we ignore warnings that our planet cannot sustain our greed, or do we take some time to breathe and consider simpler options?’

The environmental health of this planet is in our hands. Do we continue down a seemingly finite course of economic growth, do we ignore warnings that our planet cannot sustain our greed, or do we take some time to breathe and consider simpler options? The globe is in our court.

Image: rawpixel.com from Pexels

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Read also: other articles by Georges Dupras


Georges Dupras

Georges R. Dupras has advocated for animals for over fifty years. A member of the International Association for Bear Research and Management (IBA), a Director of the Animal Alliance of Canada (AAC), Quebec Representative of Zoocheck Canada and past Board member of the Canadian SPCA, he worked on the original Save the Seal campaign in 1966 that culminated in the founding of the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in 1969. Georges Dupras has published two books, Values in Conflict and the eBook Ethics, a Human Condition, and currently lives in Montreal, Canada.


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There are 3 comments

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  1. Susan May

    Excellent article by Georges R. Dupras and most eloquently expressed. We need to be conscious as to the decisions and actions we take, the impact they have on our planet and the species living upon it. As Georges rightly said, “The globe is in our court.”

    All it takes is to begin with one positive step in the right direction, even if it‘s only a baby step.

    “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
    ― Mahatma Gandhi

  2. Doris Potter

    Georges Dupras gives us nine steps to help improve our lives and those of others on this planet. What could be more worthwhile?

    I would like to think that, five decades later, I have progressed from the young person I once was and that this process will continue. Embracing change, challenging our assumptions, and recognizing our early conditioning are valuable exercises to help make us better people. The planet will benefit as well.

    Georges encapsulates that goal in his brilliant last line of the article: “The globe is in our court”.

  3. Jean Le Marquand

    Excellent suggestions from G Dupras to begin to heal the damage done to our planet. And
    since we have no other place to go, the sooner each of us begins to make changes in our
    diet, lifestyle, etc. the better. We cannot wait for politicians to act…changes as small as using
    our cars less and switching to a plant-based diet is one small step per person but with gigantic
    results.


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