The responses of people to the growing presence of climate change on our planet are quite diverse. There is, of course, a vociferous minority that simply deny that it exists. Then there are the ostriches, the people who accept that climate change exists, but who don’t want to think about it or talk about it, and who don’t want to do anything about it, because to do something about it would mean to have to painfully think about it. Of the people who want to do something about it, there are those who feel the sense of urgency that most scientists are conveying and want to switch to renewable energy like sun, wind, and biomass as soon as possible. Then there are those who have a vested interest in continuing to use fossil fuels as much as possible: fuels like coal, natural gas and oil. These are people who want to continue to make money from fossil fuels as long as they can, until, at some undetermined point in the future, after having milked the fossil fuel situation for as long as possible, they relinquish their insistence on being major owners and workers in the industry. Of course, by the time that this happens, it may be too late to save the planet, but that is a story for another time.
Climate change is the result of a strange mixture of technological and natural influences. On the one hand, the dangers to humans that we see elicited are behaviors on the part of natural phenomena: droughts, tornados, earthquakes, rainstorms, etc. The modification of these natural catastrophes is based on natural substances and natural energies that have been indirectly influenced by technological processes to rise above normal behavioral patterns for natural catastrophes, rise above the ecosystems that have a way of controlling their activation, and express themselves in the experiential vacuum that has been generated as a result of increasing technological displacement.
What this means is that the abrasive aspect of these natural catastrophes is made more severe as they are lifted above the natural ecosystems where they normally would unfold. These modern natural catastrophes are defined discrete phenomena that become even more highlighted and outlined as stand-alone figures. This occurs as they separate from the natural ecosystems where, because of the extreme disruptive natures of these modern natural catastrophes, they receive no grounding. Instead, they simply enter an experiential vacuum where they just float off into nothingness and numbness after they have terminated their destructive activities. In the case of these modern natural catastrophes, because they exist outside of a normal organic ecosystem, they can be unusually unstable and highly damaging.
One reaction to climate change that hasn’t been discussed yet in this column is the spiritual one. In particular the attitude that instead of focusing on conquering nature by repressing it and destroying it, people should take care of it and nurture it. This is the attitude not only of the secular environmentalists, but also of religious people who emphasize the female principle in their worship. The female principle utilizes a lot of flowing blendable continual stimuli to ground and bond natural phenomena rather than breaking them apart. This is emblematic of the approach we need to take in dealing with nature and ecosystems.
In Judaism, the more Kabbalistic groups and the progressive groups focus on and discuss the Shechinah as the divine female Jewish presence. It is no accident that the increasing focus on this principle in Judaism coincides with a time in human history when our planet needs to be healed.
The female principle is also playing a larger role in Christianity with the notion that God contains both male and female essences merged together and is therefore beyond duality.
The female principle has always played a large role in Hinduism where God has male, female and androgynous presentations.
One grouping of groups where the female principle has always been strong is the Pagans. Female spirits play a major role in these diverse groups as do female leaders. Pagans are very focused today on healing the world. Although they are small in numbers, there are many aspects of their philosophy that are very constructive with regard to the problems posed by climate change. And the human race needs the help of different ideas, different philosophies, different perspectives to deal with the problems posed by climate change and global warming.
Furthermore, it is a time when women are attaining positions of power in the healing professions. In particular, doctors as well as clergy in mainstream religions. As women spread their healing ideas and practices, they can bring out the healing tendencies in all of us with their flowing blendable continual energies. The problem of climate change will not be easy to solve and the situation is definitely going to get worse before it gets better. But what I am saying is that we not only need focused defined discrete scientific and technological solutions. We also need an intangible change in our attitudes towards life and towards the world. With defined discrete solutions and flowing blendable continual attitudes working together, we will be in a better position to confront the whole situation more effectively.