Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Man's Divorce from Nature

Ever since man became aware of his superior intelligence, his divorce from nature began to unfold. Fueled by the rise of religious philosophy and our capacity for imagination, we convinced ourselves that we possess spiritual traits that set us apart from other creatures and that give us the right to mold this planet.

Of course, man would not have survived without preying upon plants and animals. But it was the evolution of human culture, some 10,000 years ago, characterized by the rise of cultivation and domestication, that sealed our role as the chosen species. And, as time marched on, the industrial and technologic revolutions widened the gap between man and his natural environment.

Like the modern, human divorce, our separation from nature was initially exhilarating. We sensed the freedom to choose lifestyles without regard to our natural origin. Alas, pretending to be independent of nature and assuming the capacity to control her, we have placed our species at risk. Until we acknowledge that man is part of nature....that divorce is not an option....we will continue on our foolish path to oblivion and, sadly, take many other species with us.