There is always a new feeling when the year starts over again. This year I can't help but begin to visually notice the destruction of the garden around us. Through the things I see with my own eyes, too the things I watch and read about online and in books or magazines. Different conservation groups engaged in literal war-zones. Activist being arrested for releasing caged and tortured animals. Freedom fighters engaged in battles of government and rebel armies over trafficking and slavery. Well builders in countries oppressed in war and without clean drinking water. Movements arising all over the planet for specific causes and purpose. It is a new generation of people starting to take the roles of leaders and go getters, and if they are interrupted or forced to move, they challenge that authority and force them to give them the answer to their question, "Why?"
The last few weeks of December 2012 and now into January 2013, I have been watching back episodes of Whale Wars. For those who may not know what that is, I will do a quick run down. Whale Wars is a show on Animal Planet that involves the Conservation Group, " The Sea Shepherds." Lead by Paul Watson, former founder of GreenPeace, who was dismissed from the organization for being to aggressive in his actions. He then started Sea Shepherds, and with his volunteer crews, they wage war against people and country who bend or break the laws of international sea fishing, whaling, shark hunting, and other forms of arctic wildlife exploitation.
As I continue to watch what it is this organization is doing, I cannot help and think to myself how amazing these people are. They are literally risking their lives in dangerous conditions and with no law or military back up. They aim to directly interfere with hostile forces. As I watch each episode, my insides get shaken up, and I feel like I am experiencing the same emotions that the crew is feeling at that time. It is a very odd emotional thing that happens, and I am not even there with them.
Back a few months ago I watched the movie "Bold Native." A fictional film based on real life activists. Groups of people who are taking up actions against animal testing, factory farming and fur trade operations to name a few. I am sure the is a lot of other things they compete with as well. Again, these individuals risk life, for the liberations of the animals who are involuntarily being treated with disrespect and emotionless torture. All for the sake a human consumption and greed.
Both the Sea Shepherds and the animal liberation groups that fueled Bold Native are considered terrorists by national governments. As well as Federal and International Governments. Threatened with charges of Piracy and Illegal interference of research and studies, the Sea Shepherds continue to press on and get in the face of the enemy. In the same regards, the Animal Liberation groups world wide are also tried as Terrorists. Not a minor charge. Terrorist as in 9/11 events style Terrorism. If caught in their actions and proven guilty of property damage or interference of whatever they interfere with, Activist face Federal Prison sentencing. For an act as small as trespassing and cage opening at a Mink Fur Farm, one activist couple I read about received 5 years Federal Prison. Still, after these threats and official crackdowns, these Activists put themselves in the face of he enemy.
I also follow other advocacy and activist websites online that challenge those who are willing to join the fight. Wether through petitioning, protesting, or physical involvement in legal grey area activities. These are organizations that are stepping to the front lines and challenging the "Traditional" ways of doing thing. They are backed by years of studies both medical and analytical, and they use these findings as fuel for their campaigns.
I do not only follow animal activist though. I try my best to follow and get involved in many human related issues. On a spectrum that ranges from Vegetarianism/Veganism to Fatherless Generation issues, Abortion, Environmental Conservation, Sex Trafficking, Child Labor Exploitation, and Child Soldiers. I also follow a few companies such as Tom's Shoes, EatArt, and WeWood, who use their business to help the less fortunate receive goods they need. Be it food, clothing, shoes or medical.
For me, all of these groups and companies are serving an exact purpose. Wether we agree or disagree with their practice, or the way they do what they do, the point is that they are getting it done. I for one am for it. To the best of my understanding, the majority of the activist and conservationist groups are doing what they can to maintain the non-violent action towards humans that oppose their efforts. But this by no means makes them backdown if and when confrontation arises. They do defend themselves when threatened with their lives and the lives of others. They are, most of the time, in war-zones and hostile environments.
Before I started writing this entry, I can not help but have his thought that has been in my mind for a while now. It started after reading a book I recently purchased titled "Date Your Wife." A rather interesting view on marriage and how to keep it up and running at full steam and keep it successful. The author starts the book out by telling the story of Adam and Eve when they were still called Man and Woman. We all know how the story of their meeting goes. But the author meditates and dissects the story a bit further.
God creates the world. Night and Day, Sun and Moon, Land and Sea, Desserts and Forrest, Plants and Animals. Then in the final phase of creation, God creates Man in the likeness of Himself and the Angels. After he creates man, He places him in the Garden. Then He tells the man to cultivate the land and be sure it flourishes. Then while doing these tasks, God notices man becomes tired and instructs him to find himself a helper among the creatures of the land. During this time of creation there was no strife between man and beast. The strife came from a curse later in the story. But during his search for a helper, man found nothing suitable for his needs. So God put the man to sleep and formed woman from his rib.
The reason I talk about this story and how it all comes together with what I wrote above is this; God formed man in the final stages of creation. First He constructed the planet, the lands, the waters, the vegetation, the beasts, the birds, and the things below the surfaces. THEN He created man. There was no strife among any living creature. So God told the man to "Cultivate the Garden, make sure that it flourishes." Man's only assignment was to make sure the creation that he was placed in stayed healthy and continued to produce good things.
Fast forward to present day, and take a real precise and accurate look at the garden now. Do it with open eyes. If you take the time and energy to do this you too will see the disarray and dysfunction that is taking place. On both the local and international plains, Man has put himself in the position of God. Man makes decisions without regard to cultivation or the benefit of life, he makes the decision based on profits, power and position. Where we were once blessed to be in position of Dominion, we have now made a cursed and greedy position. We have made "Dominion" a control position instead of an in charge position. Plagued by years of "Tradition" and the mindsets of "That's how our ancestors did it." The sad news for eyes like this is that WE ARE NOT OUR ANCESTORS. We have become more educated and more experienced in our endeavors. We have the knowledge of what is good and what is un-beneficial to all life forms.
People like the Sea Shepherds and the Animal Liberation Groups understand that man's greed and perverse vision of dominion is destroying our home. We are depleting our natural resources as well as our environment for he sake of money and power. Activist groups evolved in Trafficking and Slavery groups understand that the exploitation of humans is counteractive to the progression and harmony of creation. There are a million groups and companies that could be named, all of them flying both under the radar and in the international eye. All of them getting right up in the face of the enemy.
But who is the enemy? The answer; YOU, ME, and everyone else who partakes in the destruction of the Garden.
With the understanding of funding issues, and society placements, I know not everyone can make a grand scale impact on the cultivation process. But everything that has major purpose, STARTS as a small and simple action. Then snowballs into routine and habitual actions, and with enough motivation and support it becomes a Movement!
Take a few moments after reading this if you will, put the computer or digital devise down, and just look around. Look out your window, stand on your porch, or in your front yard. Really LOOK. The things you see around you, THIS is your Garden. Wether city, country or suburbs, You live in the Garden. You are blessed to have this creation in the state it is in. It could be worse! It can always be worse! But the reason it is not, is because their are people you do not know, people you may never meet or see in real life, people who will never see media attention in a positive light, if at all. There are brothers and sisters putting their lives on the line, LITERALLY, to keep the balance in the Garden.
When you are done really seeing what is around you, take some time to seek out ways you can help the Cultivation Process. Conscious decisions like paper instead of plastic. Recycled instead of New. Consume less. Turn down the heat and put on more layers. Donate all your unused items to ministries like Salvation Army, Good Will, and other more minor ones. Walk, ride a bike, or use some skates to get around your local areas instead of driving (weather permitting.)
My personal challenge to the readers, seriously look into Vegetarianism or Veganism. There is nothing but beneficial repercussions all across the board when you make this decision. These decision help you both health wise and living wise. It benefits the environment, it lowers the amount of deaths in he animal kingdom, it destroys diseases, it cuts back on waste and trash. It is all part of the Garden and it's cultivation. It takes effort, and it takes conscious decision making. But the benefits outweigh any reason you can make to say no.
On a heavier note, if you consider yourself a Christian, or a follower of Christ, or however you want to say it, I believe it is our duty to be Vegetarian/Vegan. When you read the text, There was no call for the eating of animals. All animals and beings lived in harmony and were told to eat of the trees and plants and grains. It wasn't until the flood subsided that God "aloud" man to eat animals. But with this allowance came a curse. God placed strife between man and beast, and if man was going to eat them, he was REQUIRED to give an account (acceptable reason) for the lifeblood he took. Usually this was applied to animals used for Sacrifice of Sin or Celebration and Feasts. So unless you personally collect the meat and fish you feed your family with, (and I do not mean from the market) there is no reason to partake in the eating of animals and marine life. Look into it, the book of Genesis, it is in the text.
2013, a time for awareness, a time for cultivation. Be part of the change, and watch where it can take you.