The video spectacle of an air tanker disintegrating in mid flight, claiming the lives of its crew on sudden, wrenching impact jolts us. The determined but exhausted faces of firefighters, professional and volunteer alike, intermingled with the shell-shocked evacuees reinforce our realization that man’s best efforts are often barely enough to scratch the surface in these struggles.
Decades of alleged misguided policy and forest mismanagement, with all the vitriol it has created, weather that seemingly grows hotter and drier with each passing season, and the decisions we all embrace that in one form or another put us in harm’s way, have apparently set the stage for an era of catastrophe.
There are times when a feeling of helplessness is so overwhelming that it seems to be all we have left. Nature will have her way. And the road we travel toward wisdom and understanding is not an easy one. We find ourselves stopping to ask, “How do we even know where to start in making our world a more sustainable place?”
There seems to be a global vacuum of leadership in these matters. I am truly at a loss when it comes to where I can turn for courage and reassurance. But perhaps that is part of nature’s lesson as well, that leadership ultimately comes from within.
A friend and colleague recently shared an essay by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Ph.D, “You Were Made For This”, in which the author acknowledges that, “Ours is a time of almost daily astonishment and often righteous rage of the latest degradation of what matters most to civilized, visionary people.”
But she goes on to impart a nugget of sagacity, an idea whose proportions give us hope that perhaps we can affect the final outcome…
“Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach.”
Posted: 7/13/2012 10:01:03 AM by
Mary Kestner | with 2 comments