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Killing Us Slowly (?) With Our Progress.

The following was posted earlier today by athgarvan. an Irish Christian Brother about my age whose view so closely resembles my own that i get his permission to put it here.


"From Ps.8: "You entrust us with the works of your hands to care for all your creation."

I should take cognizance of the way I use earth resources - water, gas, oil, trees, animals, forests, air, etc. - because they are limited, they will not continue to be available forever. I have often used these things as if they are unlimited in supply. Many species of animals, birds, fish, plants, and other organisms have already gone into extinction.

Professor Stephen Hawking has warned that a disaster on Earth within the next 1,000-10,000 years is a "near certainty"; that genetically engineered viruses, nuclear war and global warming all threaten to wipe out the human race in the foreseeable future.

"Most of the threats we face come from the progress we've made in science and technology". Can we continue to be in control?"

SHORT REFLECTION - Athgarvan Musings


1) Do we, or did we ever, control the planet.  Neither "Stewardship" nor "domination" necessarily imply control in the sense that we can  willfully cause, or even predict, the course of natural events.  Floods, wildfires, droughts, plagues, winds, and earthquakes continue to come when the come. And no act of terrorism nor very many other intentional acts of violence can  cause anywhere near the damage of  these events.  These events will get worse and we are not even doing those few things we can do to stave  off the inevitable.

2) When the Psalmist and the scientist are in basic agreement about the state of affairs, it behooves us all to take notice regardless of the effect on  next quarter's profits.

3) Hawling's short list of events that might cause our extinction could be longer; plague, nuclear warfare, and globl warming, could be added the combined effects of the need to manage resources and human avarice, the combined effects of irrational hatred and chemical weapons, bureaucracy, and sheer blind cosmic events*.

4) Over 60 years ago, Reinhold Niebuhr reminded us that our real problem is thar we are supposed to love one another, but don't   This is one area where we are in sore need of an "accountability system."

*Many would have me add population growth the the list of dangers.  Obviously, numbers complicate many problems, but do not, per se, cause them.  1) The rate of population growth is declining rapidly and could reach ZPG or even negative growth in  this century.  Population should level off before the twelve billion mark is reached.  2) Mohandas Gandhi was correct when he said that the world is sufficient for every person's need but not for any person's greed.  If we were caring, restrained, and  humble (which we ought to be anyway) twelve point nine nine nine nine nine nine nine nine nine billion cohabitants would not be unwelcome.  We could destroy the world with greed and hatred without adding one more person to the human population.

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bobby1933
bobby1933

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