I learned that every organism was part of an ecosystem and various examples were provided in the learning material. I also learned how removing or changing one part of an ecosystem could upset the balance of the ecosystem and even destroy it.
Perhaps due to the kind of topics I follow on social media, I am reminded almost daily of the damage we as a species are wreaking on Mother Earth and our cohabitants. I see how mankind is encroaching more and more on nature in every way we can think of and the disastrous results of our actions.
This has led me to ask, "What is our Ecosystem and do we even have a right to claim any ecosystem as ours? If the answer is "the entire planet and every ecosystem within it" that would be understandable considering how widely we are spread across the earth. But even if that were the answer, what gives us the right to claim an ecosystem as "ours"? Whatever other species are included in the ecosystem we call "ours", have as much right as we do to call it "theirs". Just because they can't speak English or any other language does not mean they have lesser rights than us. Quite simply, no species owns any ecosystem but is merely one part of an ecosystem.
When we look around us at other organisms and how they live in their natural environment, we see creatures which live harmoniously and which are at peace. Life is an ever ongoing peaceful cycle which, if left undisturbed, will play itself out over and over again.
Even in today's world we still see human tribes which have stayed true to their roots and have not changed. We in the developed world would say that they have not advanced. But can we really call our world "developed"? Can we really say that they have not "advanced"? They live in harmony with their environment. They take no more than they need and live simply. Is it not us in the "developed" world who have perhaps regressed to a more primitive state then?
The damage we have done to this world is visible and blatantly evident:
- Species wiped out for poaching, commerce and expansion of humanity's presence
- Global warming as a result of our "development" and "advancement" of technology.
- The Great Pacific Garbage Patch
- Decimation of rain forests.
- Bee colonies dying at an unprecedented rate
- Frogs dying at an unprecedented rate
- Fish dying faster than they reproduce........
Given, many of us are now working to bring positive change and minimize or even reverse, if possible, the damage we have done. At last there are those of us who seek to be part of an ecosystem rather than believe we own the global ecosystem and can abuse it as we wish.
But while we seek to halt the havoc we have caused it still does not answer the question, "What is our ecosystem?" We see many movies in which earth is attacked by aliens seeking to take over Earth for it's water and resources.
Could it be possible that we were once the aliens who won the battle and took over Earth so we could plunder it's resources at will? Could it be that we did this on other worlds in the universe before and now realize there is more value in longevity than simply exploiting what we can?
Even as we are trying to reverse and slow the damage we have caused we are seeking new worlds to colonize. Just like the aliens in the movies do. Is it that there are those among us who know that our efforts to save Earth are too little too late and that the eventual demise of Earth as a home is inevitable? Do we really need to find a new home and when we do, what will we do with it? Plunder and destroy it too, or will we have learned our lesson here?
Will we really have to relocate what is left of our species to create our own ecosystem on some inhospitable planet? Will we only then learn the value of being a part of an ecosystem as opposed to believing we can play God with other ecosystems?
All around us we see and hear news of people who are making the world a better place through their inventions and contributions. Much of what is created now is created for the purpose of preservation. And respect to those people who are doing something about saving this world. But I do have to ask, "is the intention self preservation of the human species or genuinely intended preservation of Earth and everything living on her?"
Would it be necessary for us to make these things now if we had not plundered our world to the extent that we have? After all, we are simply trying to return the global ecosystem to an acceptable balance to continue sustaining life - needless to say, a state it was in before we made our enormous advancements as a species over the last 100 years.
I am all for advancement and welcome the technological developments which are being realized now. These advancements are being made as a result of the necessity to halt and even reverse the damage we have done to Mother Earth. This is the best we can do given that we cannot go back in time to change our present day reality.
I hope that the end result will be a global balance for all ecosystems and that we as a species will accept our place as a cohabitant of Mother Earth in the global ecosystem, responsible for preserving it for our future generations as well as every species with us on the planet.
(image courtesy of http://www.public-domain-image.com)