The Importance of Peace
Typically, my Home Explorer activities will primarily focus on scientific or environmental exploration, so why did I choose to have the most recent set of activities relate to interconnectedness and peace? Today, September 21st, is the International Day of Peace, and this year, it is falling at a time in most people’s lives that feels rather lacking in peace and tranquility.
Currently, everyone on earth is facing a deadly pandemic that has profoundly impacted the ways we work, play, and interact with one another. More locally, Oregon and other western states have been battling unprecedented wildfires that have threatened our homes, our livelihoods, and our very lives. Humans and animals alike have had to relocate in haste, trying to find safety. As a nation, we are in the midst of racial and political turmoil as we seek justice, equality, and peace for all. Conflict often arises when someone’s needs or expectations aren’t being met. The abundance of recent conflict indicates that there are numerous people and groups who are suffering. Human conflict and greed result in countless casualties for plants and animals as well. The natural world is crying out from deforestation, exploitation, pollution, habitat loss, and a number of other abuses which leave death and destruction in their wake.
The International Day of Peace reminds us to pause in these chaotic times, to slow down, to notice the world around us – to appreciate what we have in abundance and share, to work in harmony for the things we or others lack. Continuing on our current trajectory will only result in heightened levels of pollution, the elimination of ecosystems, the extinction of entire species. However, if we are mindful of our impact on each other and the earth, and strive to make environmentally conscious choices each day, we can ensure that human beings and other creatures alike have access to clean water and air, enough food, safety, security, and an opportunity to live in peace.