Re: Digest Number 509
- I have to jump into this discussion.
Let me first say that I admire the Amish and Mennonite attitudes and way
of life, even though my own understanding of things is different. Like
Theo, I see population, per se, as a problem; however, unlike Theo, I
see lifestyle as an even greater problem. To make my case, assume two
identical earths, one inhabited by people living a low-tech lifestyle
which emphasized recycling and caring for nature and the other inhabited
by people who used huge amounts of fossil fuel and made no attempt to
conserve. While the first earth will eventually run out of room for
humans and/or the humans will make it difficult for other species to
survive, those problems will show up much quicker in the world were
everyone is consuming like crazy.
There are some real advantages to the high-tech lifestyle, such as
modern medicine. However, it seems to me that most of the advantages
are highly overrated -- including medicine. We brag about having the
best medical care in the world, but we have much higher medical costs
because so many people have sedentary lifestyles, eat poor diets, and
smoke cigarettes. Our modern lifestyle so chops up a person's time and
dehumanizes him or her, that TV, for a lot of people, is the only avenue
of escape. I do not see any advantage to having more toys to play with
when life seems basically meaningless.
Theo tried to point out some paradoxes in your points of view, but I
find greater paradoxes in the viewpoints of environmentalists I have
known. They have big cars and drive a lot, big homes and run the
air-conditioner all the time, etc. However, they want the _government_
to do something about pollution and global warming; they can not
conceive of the problem as one of individual responsibility.
It seems to me that if _we_ want to do something to improve the
environment that where we should begin is with individual lifestyles.
What difference does it make if we reduce the amount of CO2 a car
produces if every year individuals just drive farther for more frivolous
I have heard the argument made (and this was in a Christian magazine)
that there is no incentive for individual people or nations to pollute
less, and therefore there is no solution to the problem of global
warming. However, I see living a simpler life as having its own
rewards. Although I am living in a cabin in the woods and using a
bicycle as my soul transportation because I am opposed to our wasteful
lifestyle, I also consider my current lifestyle very enjoyable and
fruitful. I don't regret having to ride a bike 12 miles (one way) for
groceries and supplies or gathering wood for fuel in the winter to be
onerous tasks; instead, I find meaning in them. It is certainly more
enjoyable than driving a car through heavy traffic!
Ken Kifer's Bike Pages: 100 pages of info! -- health, advocacy, safety,
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> > We are not trying to burden the earth less,That phrase taken by itself kind of changes what I meant
> Although, for me at least, that is a part of it. Others call it
> "environmentalism", but we would call it "stewardship".
Anne. :) I did clarify that good stewardship was
important. (even used that very same word! <g>)
Rex Kerr \ For there are three that bear record in heaven,
rexkerr@... \ the Father, the Word, and the Holy
rkerr@... \ Ghost: and these three are one.
----------------------------------------1 John 5:7--------