CREATION TIME: SUSTAINABILITY & IDENTITY IN CHRIST
I. KATOLIKONG PINOY IDENTITY
When Jesus asked Peter, “But who do you say I am?” (cf. Mk 8:27-35) Jesus expected Peter to be above average in his knowledge of Him, i.e., in his determination, faith and in love.
Mas Determinado. More determined.
Just be an ordinary Catholic with extraordinary determination.
Be more determined not to quit and learn to denyoneself some privileges and rights.
“A man is a hero not because he is braver than anyone else, but because he is brave for ten minutes longer.” –R.W. Emerson
Mas Nananalig. More faith.
“The person with extra faith in God, others and oneself will certainly rise above the crowd.”-J.C. Maxwell
Taking up one’s cross is not for those with average faith. A person with average faith thinks not as God does, but as human beings do (Mk 8:33).
Having an above-average faith, you are not only empowered to take up your cross, you will also be light to the path of those who stumble, encouragement to those who faint, relief for those who are heavily laden. Kung ganito ka na, angat ka na sa iba!
Mas Umiibig. More Loving.
Do ordinary things with extraordinary love! St. Francis Xavier said, “Be great in little things.”
This is the final and beginning step to this cycle of excellence: after denying oneself, taking up one’s cross, we follow Christ. Doing so, we grow more in determination, faith and love, and the cycle continues unto perfection.
II. SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGE:
√Sustainability is recognizing who we are by recognizing who our master is: Lord, our Life. It is recognizing that what we have does not bring us life.
√ As His Stewards, nothing really belongs to us by right. We have been set free to live a radical lifestyle.
√ The Challenge we all face in this age of ecological crisis is to have a commitment to live a simple lifestyle. The next section tells us why a simple lifestyle is preferred now.
III. SUSTAINABILITY ISSUE:
CO2, OUR LIFESTYLE AND THE EARTH
√ Carbon is fount in all living things. It is also found in sediments, rocks, the ocean and the air we breathe.
Carbon is exchanged between the oceans, solid earth, biosphere and atmosphere through various natural processes.
√ The largest exchanges occur between the biosphere and the atmosphere through photosynthesis and decomposition.
√ Living plants grow by absorbing carbon dioxide during photosynthesis. When plants die, bacteria decompose them and return carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
√ For thousands of years, the processes that added and subtracted carbon dioxide from the atmosphere were in balance.
√ Since the industrial revolution, however, human society has become increasingly dependent upon machines that release carbon into the atmosphere.
Fossil fuel such as coal, gasoline, oil and natural gas contain high concentrations of carbon that hade been stored in the solid earth for hundreds of millions of years.
√ When we burn fossil fuel for heat, transportation and electricity, large quantities of carbon that would otherwise remain stored in the solid earth are released into the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide.
The dependence of human society on fossil fuels leads to a build up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
IV. SUSTAINABILITY ISSUE SOLUTION:
Humus would be a powerful means of carbon storage. Why don’t we talk about the fact that: “The ground stores around twice as much carbon as the entire amounts in the atmosphere.” (Florian Amlinger, Ecologist)
Humus: The Forgotten Climate Aid
√ The world’s climate does have a chance and it’s right under our feet and yet we’re still destroying it.
√ In the past, natural processes simply always converts excess CO2 into biomass. Today, that no longer works. Why?
√ We’re heading for a global catastrophe. What forces stand in the way of the right measures? Agricultural machinery has an enormous influence on soil organisms. Have we followed the wrong path only to incur ever higher costs? “The solution is acutally to be found in a new ecological form of agriculture that creates humus.” (Dr. August Raggam, Ecologist) Could it be that until now we have failed to notice the most important factor for climate: organisms in the soil? What secrets are known to the pre-Columbian farmers? Does this soil actually contain the key to solving world-wide problems?
√ In Amazonia, researchers have discovered 2,000 year old yet extremely fertile earth. It takes hundreds of years to create the thin fertile layer of earth that sustains us all. Now, this is all at stake. Hidden away in the life beneath our feet is the last chance for our climate. We need to understand the life inside if we are to rescue life outside.
√ Humus generation is becoming a race against time. Will we grasp humus generation as our climate’s last chance? “And it has been demonstrated that it is really is possible for over 10-15 years to raise carbon levels significantly.” (Dr. Klaus-Kurt Hulsbergen. Technical Univ. of Munich)
√ “And the entire excess will be outside and our climate problem will be solved.” (Dr. August Raggam, Ecologist)
√ “Negotiations are going on for the post-2012 period. It would be great if soil management, grassland and cropland management was included.” (David Neil Bird, Researcher)
EPILOGUE: SUSTAINABILITY KEY:
HUMAN IDENTITY AND HUMILITY
♥ Human: “man” related to humus “earth,” on notion of “earthly beings,” as opposed to the gods (cf. Heb. adam “man,” from adamah “ground”).
√ The key to saving the Earth is our Identity. The key to our Identity is our humanity. The key to human and divine sustainability is HUMILITY.
√ Humus Generation is not enough to save the world. Generating a more humane simple lifestyle based on our Identify as God’s Children and Stewards of this Earth is the first step. Humus generation should be a reminder that we are the first humus into whom God breathed His own Spirit of Life and Love. This Identity is the Key to Sustainability.