“Love violates the story of separation. Love is the expansion of self to include another, whose well-being becomes part of one’s own. The healing of our planet will not come without love for our planet. It certainly won’t come from technological solutions that seek to more competently deploy resources and manage consequences. That is the path toward biofuel plantations, nuclear power plants, and geoengineering schemes that threaten catastrophic consequences. If someone loves the rhinos, and loves the mangroves, and loves the forests, and loves the coral reefs, and loves the West Virginia mountaintops and the rain forests threatened by stripmines and the waters threatened by oil spills, it doesn’t matter if they believe in climate change, they will oppose every new coal mine, oil well, fracking project, and copper mine. Conversely, without love behind it, no carbon controls will make a difference in the long run.
“What is it like to be a rhino? To be a policeman? A corporate executive, a terrorist, a killer? What is it like to be a river? These questions arise naturally in the story that Thich Nhat Hanh named interbeing, that holds us as interdependent on every level, even that of basic existence. It is the successor to the story of the separate self, and it opens us to compassion and grief alike.”
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