Let us make everyday a day for giving thanks and let us make everyday Earth day too. Let us work to save our planet and it’s inhabitants, for we are graced with this wondrous thing called life.
We have received an inestimable gift. To be alive in this beautiful, self-organizing universe—to participate in the dance of life with senses to perceive it, lungs that breathe it, organs that draw nourishment from it—is a wonder beyond words. It is an extraordinary privilege to be accorded a human life, with self-reflexive consciousness that brings awareness of our own actions and the ability to make choices. It lets us choose to take part in the healing of our world….
…That our world is in crisis—to the point where survival of conscious life on Earth is in question—in no way diminishes the value of the gift of life; on the contrary. To us is granted the privilege of being on hand: to take part, if we choose, in the Great Turning to a just and sustainable society. We can let life work through us, enlisting all our strength, wisdom, and courage, so that life itself can continue.
There is so much to be done, and the time is so short. We can proceed, of course, out of grim and angry desperation. But the tasks proceed more easily and productively with a measure of thankfulness for life; it links us to our deeper powers and lets us rest in them. Many of us are braced, psychically and physically, against the signals of distress that continually barrage us in the news, on our streets, in our environment. As if to reduce their impact on us, we contract like a turtle into its shell. But we can choose to turn to the breath, the body, the senses—for they help us to relax and open to wider currents of knowing and feeling.—Joanna Macy, from her Shambhala Sun article, Gratitude: Where Healing the Earth Begins.
More posts that feature Joanna Macy’s work:
- How Life Organizes
- Transforming despair
- To be alive in this beautiful, self-organizing universe
- Spirituality and politics (activism) — being in the world
- The great turning: the shift from industrial growth society to a life sustaining society
Books by Joanna Macy:
- Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We’re in without Going Crazy
- Coming Back to Life: Practices to Reconnect Our Lives, Our World
- World as Lover, World as Self: Courage for Global Justice and Ecological Renewal
- Pass it On: Five Stories That Can Change the World