As many have commented, one unintended consequence of the lockdown has been a sharper appreciation for the sounds, smells and sights of the natural world – especially coinciding with weeks of beautiful weather.
– The rich scent of gorse on a walk.
– The music of birdsong
– The clear air giving bluer skies and crystal clear visibility – I have never seen Scotland as clear from the Irish coast.
– The night sky – have a look at Venus this evening.
Here are some more photos I took yesterday and today of the uplifting beauty of the natural world (and yes Grey Squirrels are an invasive pest but this one is particularly cute).
These photos to me are reminders of how, given the slightest chance, creation is bursting with life.
But they are also poignant reminders of a darker truth. That it takes a pandemic for humanity to take a break from our frantic lives and rapacious exploitation of the natural world and get a tiny glimpse of a healthier world.
Humanity is in the process of committing the crime of ecocide – the destruction of the environment created by God and all that that means for millions of species and of course humanity itself – especially the poor.
Covid 19 itself is likely a result of human arrogance and interference in the natural world, breaking barriers through trade in wild animals that faciliated the jump of the coronavirus into the human population.
What chance the pandemic is a significant turning point in changing our self-destructive ways?
Or are there too many vested interests committed to propagating the lie that our current capitalist ‘Western way of life’ can be sustained without destroying the planet? Is there too much pressure on the natural world caused by a rapidly expanding global population for a change of course to be achieved?
I pray for a turning point.
And if the response to the pandemic has shown us anything, it is that unimaginable and previously unthinkable politicial action is possible if there is will to change. It will take global co-operation at government level to make a significant difference.
The last few weeks have shown us that there is nothing inevitable about the destruction of the natural world. It is the result of human policies and human choices.
If something good comes out of the pandemic it will be that there is an increasing global consensus to make better policies and better choices regarding the world which we have the gift to inhabit.
Comments on what role you or I can have in making a difference are welcome.