Friday is Earth Day. Of course, every day is Earth Day. Where would we be without Mother Earth? Have we thanked her lately?
But humans being who we are, we need moments like Earth Day just as we need moments like Ramadan or Passover or Easter to continue to ground ourselves and to stay awake and aware when other events deter us and distract us. Like wars. Or paying the bills. Or dealing with taxes. Or the rhythms of life around us and our loved ones.
And politics and politicians, separating lies from truth and floods of dark money from dark places for dark purposes such as destroying democracy for the sake of narcissistic wanna-be Czars, dictators, religious zealots or what have you.
We cannot be conscious all the time of what is important and not so; Life makes many demands on our time and thoughts.
Earth Day reminds us of what is important. And what is less important.
Truth is important and the facts of how Mother Earth is suffering today at the hands of humans is important. Science, therefore, is important for, among other things, offering the facts of how Earth is being treated and what the consequences are and will be.
Facts are not always easy to face but face them we must. If survival is important for a species like ours and if we can still hope that a life of joy and justice, of conviviality and compassion, is still possible for all seven billion homosapiens on this earth, then we dare to face the facts of our time, listen to science, and respond generously.
How special and how sacred is earth to all of us? And to leaders of our various communities and tribes and systems of governments around the world? And to all our religions? And all our places and levels of learning, from pre-school through professional schools? Is Earth and her wonders on the agenda of every professional school in the world? Are lawyers and bankers and entertainers and business leaders learning how their work can contribute to preserving the Earth? (Or destroying it?)
Is Earth and her survival at the forefront of every religious tradition in the world? If the essence of true religion is, in Thomas Aquinas’s understanding, “supreme thankfulness and gratitude,” are we all—believers or not—engaged in rendering “supreme thankfulness and gratitude”? How do we best do that?
To be continued…
See Matthew Fox, The Tao of Thomas Aquinas, pp. 41-44.
Also see Matthew Fox, Julian of Norwich: Wisdom in a Time of Pandemic…and Beyond
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: “The Great Los Angeles River CleanUp” Roughly 4,000 volunteers over 15 community sites cleared 25 tons of trash from the riverway. Photo by Los Angeles District US Army Corps of Engineers on Flickr.
Queries for Contemplation
Meditate on where you would be without Mother Earth? On where we would be? Meditate on Nothingness. How do you go about expressing supreme thankfulness and gratitude? Can we do better?
The Tao of Thomas Aquinas: Fierce Wisdom for Hard Times
A stunning spiritual handbook drawn from the substantive teachings of Aquinas’ mystical/prophetic genius, offering a sublime roadmap for spirituality and action.
Foreword by Ilia Delio.
“What a wonderful book! Only Matt Fox could bring to life the wisdom and brilliance of Aquinas with so much creativity. The Tao of Thomas Aquinas is a masterpiece.”
–Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit
Julian of Norwich: Wisdom in a Time of Pandemic–and Beyond
Julian of Norwich lived through the dreadful bubonic plague that killed close to 50% of Europeans. Being an anchoress, she ‘sheltered in place’ and developed a deep wisdom that she shared in her book, Showings, which was the first book in English by a woman. A theologian way ahead of her time, Julian develops a feminist understanding of God as mother at the heart of nature’s goodness. Fox shares her teachings in this powerful and timely and inspiring book.
“What an utterly magnificent book. The work of Julian of Norwich, lovingly supported by the genius of Matthew Fox, is a roadmap into the heart of the eco-spiritual truth that all life breathes together.” –Caroline Myss
Now also available as an audiobook HERE.