Another clear day in New Mexico- Poco and I have been soaking up the sun!
In my past writing I have tended to focus on bitter quagmires of humankind. Welcome to Reality, my first book, told the story of my dealings with a crooked local municipality and brief stint in jail. Corporacracy, my second, told a tale of nationwide scandal which I believe is crippling our political system and our country. I always look forward to the times that this incredible universe plucks me out of my immediate bubble of consciousness and thrusts me into its vastness, putting me completely at the mercy of its incomprehensible enormity and complexity.
Often glorious, clear, warm days like this seem to make me look at the big picture; to go beyond my personal trials and tribulations or even those of our entire culture in order to see the larger picture, the collective history of mankind. Every human who has ever lived has looked upon the same sun which has warmed me every day for my entire life, which warmed me this morning as I took my morning walk with Poco, and that warms me now as I write these words. Every human who has ever lived has been faced with this enormous glowing mystery, but as time has gone on, more and more of they mystery has been solved. We know exactly what it is: what it is made of, how far away it is from us, its circumference, the conditions on its surface. Over the course of my lifetime we have learned more about our planet and this universe than any other period and civilization has ever known.
The extraordinary strides we have made in explaining and coping with this world do not come without a price, however. For every disease that is cured or miracle invention invented, answers have been uncovered about our species and our world. And they’re not always the answers that we would like. With each scientific stride we make, we learn a little bit more about the consequences of our actions.
It is truly incredible that we have persisted in the face of so many formidable foes, though it seems as of late we are our own worst enemy. The constant forces of nature—the energy locked deep within our planet which created mountains, rivers, oceans, fiery volcanoes and every living being that has ever experienced these things—these forces are shrinking in size relative to anthropogenic forces which are wreaking an increasing amount of havoc upon this earth. Suddenly the earth seems small. It is not an untouchably enormous system which operates outside of the human sphere of influence. It is something that we can disrupt, some say maybe even break completely. Thoughts like these scare me, but they also inspire me. They push me to look to the past for answers. To examine all sides of a dispute before I launch myself into one corner or the other.
This feeling of responsibility for our earth and our civilization is daunting and scary, but it is also inspiring. It is no longer realistic for a human to claim to be too small to enact significant change when one considers all of the individual historical figures whose reputations and accomplishments have lasted for hundreds or even thousands of years. The scientific strides we have made in the last century have proven that every human has an impact on our planet’s future. The globalized cultures of the world have proven that certain ideas, songs and sentiments transcend barriers of culture and ethnicity and even language.
So I encourage readers to do this: take a step out of your bubble and do your best to look at the world from an objective stance. Does it look bigger? Smaller? Overwhelming? Manageable? What is it that really matters to us as a species? We can get so easily mired down by petty differences of opinion. It is amazing how much our vantage point can change when we look at each other as simply human beings sharing the same finite mass of fire and soil and water, which shares the same galaxy as eight other rocky masses sharing a universe with literally every living thing that there has ever been.
My most important goal in writing is to raise awareness about social and global issues, even if it means making someone step outside their normal perspective even for a brief second.