There is only a marginal amount of room for optimism as we engage the global warming crisis that is speeding toward us.
We have, at best, a mere 10 years before it will be too late to avoid many of the most serious consequences of this emergency. And, even then we will need a certain amount of luck.
But for those of us who wish to take a more spiritual perspective on such things, there is another hopeful avenue that seems worthy of at least some consideration.
Every world religion encompasses, within its own sacred writings and/or in more modern-day pronouncements of its leaders, the idea of Man’s responsibility for God’s Creation. Moving beyond mere responsibility, humanity at its best and most aware understands the deep interconnections between us and Nature. Just as we depend upon clean air and water, safe and adequate food supplies, and energy from God’s creation, so that creation, in turn, depends upon us for its continued ability to support us. This implies a stewardship responsibility that ensures we don’t use resources faster than they can be renewed naturally.
This realization leads to an understanding that must be at the core of any spiritual approach to dealing with the global warming emergency that looms before us. As long as we believe that we are separate from Creation or, worse yet, destined to use what we need from Nature without regard for its impact on other creatures, we will find it difficult to be motivated to pay any serious attention to global warming. But the Truth is, we are not separate from Creation; indeed, we are an integral part of the Creation mythology that exists in all major religions. And that Creation is a deeply embedded part of who we are as well.
We know that, at some level at least, God — by whatever name we know It — is in charge and is always inclined toward good. That does not mean, however, that we can simply turn the global warming emergency over to God and brush our hands of the entire matter. There is an old Islamic folk saying: “Trust Allah, but tie your camel.” In other words, let go and let God, but only after you’ve done all that you can. Within the Universe Community that lies behind this book and the work it undertakes, we have clear priorities. We will fully prepare for the worst, then forget about those preparations while we then focus and wholeheartedly work for the best!
What, then, are some specific ways in which spiritually-inclined individuals can contribute to the solution to the global warming emergency beyond those recommended in this book?
First, on a personal level, we can pray, meditate, contemplate, and visualize, applying the spiritual power of whatever our individual belief systems teach as effective applications of Divine energy to any problem. This may include praying for world leaders as well as the world’s wealthiest individuals and corporations to awaken to the imminent danger facing the planet as well as for the general enlightenment of humanity to activate the centers of Compassion that all religions teach us are central to our nature.
Second, we can help organize our local, regional, and national religious establishments and communities to speak up and present the important values of the spiritual viewpoint that is so often lacking in public debate and discussion on this and other pressing issues. Particularly in the United States, with its First Amendment ban on any formal connection between religion and government, there is a tendency to try to separate politics from religion even when doing so makes governing more difficult or outcomes worse. We need to get beyond that.
Finally, we can get involved with Job One for Humanity.org in combating global warming. This organization, after all, has deeply spiritual roots even though we’ve chosen to minimize their visible influence in the interest of broadening the appeal of our critical message. Job One for Humanity grew out of the organization called Universe Spirit, which has the broader agenda of applying spiritual principles to sustainable prosperity in all of its many manifestations.
It is important to note that science and metaphysics today are converging around the idea that we humans can and must begin to engage in conscious evolution rather than allowing things to take their natural course. To do this requires paying attention on both mental and spiritual levels as we engage the world around us in an effort to understand the enemy, global warming, and ultimately defeat it.
There is hope. There is always hope. But hope doesn’t solve problems; people taking action because they have hope is what solves problems. I hope and pray that your spirituality is in alignment with the needs of the Earth for consciously evolved humans to take the lead in rescuing ourselves from likely extinction and the planet from massive alteration. Together with the Power of the Divine, we can do it!
From the essay
A Spiritual Take on Climageddon
By Dan Shafer,
Ordained Interfaith Minister & Chief Strategy Officer at Job One for Humanity