by Chuck Robison
I grew up in the coal mining area of West Virginia. The miners took canaries into the mines to alert them to dangers their own senses could not detect. The presence of methane and other gases would kill the canary before It would threaten the miners lives, thus giving the miners time to escape. When you are 1,200 feet deep in a coal black mine, the death of that canary you brought along means one thing: There is a gas leak and an explosion is coming. STOP, TURN AROUND AND GET OUT!
Of course, we are so modern and brilliant! We know the animals are not sentient, and do not have a soul and we are the top species. Our churches have taught us that God Himself gave us Dominion over the beasts great and small, and we can do to them as we wish.
What we have not learned is that we are connected to and are one with all of creation. We are neither exceptional nor are we, as a species, unique. We are one with God and His entire unique creation. And all of creation is singing a praise hymn to God for all to hear.
In that hymn are messages the animals, like the canaries, are sending us as a very special alert. I can hear them and so can you, when you decide to listen.
Here is what I hear. The cries of sharks with their fins cut off for shark fin soup are unable to swim or feed themselves as they fall to the ocean floor. As they die, at the current rate of 12,000 an hour, globally, they are screaming at us, not for their own already lost lives, but to tell us we are making terrible choices.
The whales are beaching themselves because our military sonar bombardment of the seas has driven them crazy.
The whole Pacific Ocean is in a life and death battle with the run-a-way radiation caused by the melt down at Fukushima.
And the poor bees, the very beginning of the food chain, see their colonies collapsing, because we pour millions of barrels of pesticides into the environment, which their bodies cannot survive.
Our cattle cry out with the warning that loading them up with antibiotics and making them spend the last 30 days of their lives standing and stuck in their own excrement, insures more and more diseases in our own bodies that will resist all antibiotics.
Surely, the cry of the elephants as we hunt them to extinction for their tusks, thunders around the globe of our consciousness.
And on and on.
For just a second, stop what you are doing, close your eyes and try to hear them. Their voices cry out in pain, not for their own lives, but for ours and for how we have so terribly misused the power and Dominion given us.
Surely you know this cannot go on much longer, and pity those who try to excuse us with the idea that soon God is going to end this anyway, so this does not make any difference. All eight billion of us, along with all of creation, are in this catastrophe together.
We, being the ones with Dominion, are the ones, the only ones who can bring this looming doom to an end.
Thankfully, I am not in a position to tell you how to handle your part in the solution. But the birds and the bees, the beasts on land and the fish in the sea are all calling out to all of us to stop this craziness before it is too late.
As we listen to them, they will help each of us find that part of the solution which is uniquely our own.
Can you hear them?