“The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.”
The industrial revolution and the rise of capitalism have had a staggeringly negative effect on humanity’s relationship with the Earth. The focus has been on what we can get from the Earth that will help us move forward and amass more wealth. This pursuit of more has blinded many of us to the harm we have caused to the planet we call home. Historically it has been shown that in the pursuit of wealth major corporations will actively choose to damage the environment if it will lead to a more rapid increase of profit margins. In contrast to this, most indigenous people have a much healthier relationship with the Earth, which they viewed as sacred. The biblical account of Creation although poetic gives us the impression that early humans saw the Earth as a precious gift that they had been given to work in, look after and protect. As we begin hearing more about sustainability crises in different sectors it does make me wonder whether now is the time to change, to let go of our parasitic relationship with Earth in favour of a more symbiotic one relationship.
God, thank you for the beauty and complexity we see in nature. May we be reminded that this planet is our home and in that regard all our futures are linked to its health. Give us the wisdom and strength to see the ways in which we can better look after the environment and be examples of good stewardship to future generations, that what we now enjoy will be around for generations to come. Amen.