For the past forty-one days during Lent we have grown a garden. Our harvest will hopefully be a better self. For all of you out there thinking “It’s my life” or “I am an adult and can do what I want” or even “Who cares what I do?”, let me assure you that you are both right and terribly wrong.
We think of our world evolving and ever changing because it is and does. This is not because it was an imperfect creation, though. There is great evidence to show that the world of millenniums ago might have been a healthier world than the world in which we are living today. What is changing our world is us, we the people.
Sunday we discussed the phrase “raised by wolves” and how it erroneously is used to insult. Wolves live very successfully in packs and are very good parents, teaching and nurturing their young. Wolves also get a very bad rap because they are so very good at what they do – forage and acquire food. It is often said that they habitat encroaches on mankind’s. In reality, our habitat infiltrates theirs. We spread out and build ranches on land that was once theirs to hunt. They continue the hunting, this time acquiring cattle from those ranches.
Decades ago the United States decided to get rid of all the grey wolves in Yellowstone National Park and Forest. It did not happen overnight but it did happen. It took until the past ten or fifteen years to reintroduce these animals back into their natural habitat. Once grey wolves again roamed in Yellowstone, nature began changing…for the betterment of all, even mankind. The forests flourished, the balance of nature was again restored and the waters flowed smoother and clearer.
So why has mankind not been a good visitor to earth? Because we live selfishly. This past was a day late due to the death of a very old friend. This friend was a marvelous filmmaker, once nominated for an academy award and winning at the Sundance Film Festival. He was a neighbor with whom I walked home from school in elementary school and a classmate later on through high school. He was a devotee of my father’s interests as I was to his father’s interests. Our fathers used to say he was the son mine never had and I was the daughter his never had.
My friend smoked since before he could legally. It was the popular and trendy thing to do. It was perhaps one of the only selfish things he did. This past week his house burned to the ground with him in it; the cause a cigarette which burned while he slept. This week his family and friends will say goodbye.
Earlier today bombs killed over twenty in Brussels. Coordinated attacks at the airport and metro stations which, despite the claims, are not following any Prophet but are simply the work of selfish people. There is no end gain in being selfish. Even those that seem wealthy and popular are blinded by their own assumed worth. The recent political candidates currently on the electoral stage in the United States are proof of this.
Tomorrow we will discuss how to not live only for ourselves. The air we breathe is the result of air others breathed. The trees that help cleanse our air are trees planted by our ancestors, not the ones we planted last year. We are a product of the past. What are we leaving for the future? What are you doing today for a better tomorrow?