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Long live Mother Earth!



By Julia Carreon-Lagoc
April 23, 2017

 
 


I cannot let Earth Day, April 22, pass without a tribute to Mother Earth, as precious as your own mother—to hold dear and lovingly respect. Earth Day was founded in 1970, and every year thereafter, there have been worldwide celebrations. For many, however, the commemoration activities have amounted to short-lived concern for the environment. After a week of being Earth-friendly, it’s back to the madding crowd and to a lifestyle characterized by a glut of styrofoam and plastics and other non-biodegradables. (I hope I hear you say NO because you are an environmental activist or on your way to being one. Cheers!)

In the ten years or so of sporadic writing, I have included twice in my columns The Earth’s Ten Commandments in honor of Earth Day and to oblige a request from a reader for the complete list. Here are the ten again. Am I being repetitive, nagging, badgering? Like what we always do when we feel badgered, we skip. But please, for the sake of Mother Earth, don’t skip. Read, imbibe, and translate into action:

I.       You shall love and honor the earth for it blesses your life and governs your survival.
II.      You shall keep each day sacred to the earth and celebrate the turning of its seasons.
III.    You shall not hold yourself above other living things nor drive them to extinction.
IV.    You shall give thanks for your food to the creatures and the planets that nourish you.
V.      You shall limit your offspring for multitudes of people are a burden unto the earth.
VI.    You shall not kill or waste earth’s riches upon weapons of war.
VII.   You shall not pursue profit at the earth’s expense but strive to restore its damaged majesty.
VIII. You shall not hide from yourself or others the consequences of your actions upon the earth.
IX.    You shall not steal from future generations by impoverishing or poisoning the earth.
X.            You shall consume material goods in moderation so all may share earth’s bounty.

In a relative’s house is a beautifully framed Ten Commandments of Bible fame. I suggested framing and hanging, too, The Earth’s Ten Commandments. Both are just as sacred—crossing the boundaries of race, creed, color, and nationality.

Of the above, I consider Commandment No. 5 of overriding importance. I always contend that if we cannot check population growth, much of our environmental activism would be to no avail. Let me quote from a previous column: “The human impact on the environment cannot be overemphasized.  Think of soil erosion and landslides caused by a growing number of people who must eke out a living by felling trees, made worse by the criminal deforestation of big business. We live on fragile ecosystems that cry out halt to population explosion.” Natural resources dwindle with the burgeoning population.

According to Popcom, the neat shortcut for the Commission on Population, the Philippine population will double in 35 years. That means roughly 170 million Filipinos. The result: Poverty will become so overwhelming that society will be fraught with crimes induced by an empty stomach. Thus, slowing down population growth is “a given which transcends political considerations,” says Popcom. Massive poverty renders outdated and irrelevant the biblical decree to go forth and multiply.

Earth Day was founded for every human being to realize the imperative to maintain the health of Mother Earth right now more than ever. Time is of the essence. Her health is our health. Read, imbibe, and translate into action The Earth’s Ten Commandments before we can shout with high hopes and praises: Long live Mother Earth!  juliaclagoc@yahoo.com


Author Julia Carreon-Lagoc was a columnist of PANAY NEWS for two decades. She pops up with Accents now and then.

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