Sunday 21 April 2013

A Beautiful World...Still

One day a terrible fire broke out in a forest - a huge woodlands was suddenly engulfed by a raging wild fire. Frightened, all the animals fled their homes and ran out of the forest. As they came to the edge of a stream they stopped to watch the fire and they were feeling very discouraged and powerless. They were all bemoaning the destruction of their homes. Every one of them thought there was nothing they could do about the fire, except for one little hummingbird.
This particular hummingbird decided it would do something. It swooped into the stream and picked up a few drops of water and went into the forest and put them on the fire. Then it went back to the stream and did it again, and it kept going back, again and again and again. All the other animals watched in disbelief; some tried to discourage the hummingbird with comments like, "Don't bother, it is too much, you are too little, your wings will burn, your beak is too tiny, it’s only a drop, you can't put out this fire."
And as the animals stood around disparaging the little bird’s efforts, the bird noticed how hopeless and forlorn they looked. Then one of the animals shouted out and challenged the hummingbird in a mocking voice, "What do you think you are doing?" And the hummingbird, without wasting time or losing a beat, looked back and said, "I am doing what I can."

"I'm not a protest singer/
 I can't write a song to send a message/
but it seems to me as if this message needed
to be sent."

-"What Are We Gonna Do?" by Dramarama
Lyrics by John Easdale

Thanks for reading.


  1. And it's not even all that hard! Stop overdoing groceries, so you don't have to throw away stuff. Which even saves you money. Ride your bicycle some more, cars don't need to drive every single day. Which, surprise, also saves you some money! And yes, re-use whatever is possible.

    I used to be a "consuminderaar", it's like being a consumer but buy less and think more about what you are buying and why and how much. Really learned a lot from it. Especially because you buy every single thing around you, even if you think you don't. "If it ain't broken, you don't fix it (but you also don't need to buy another)."

  2. Soapbox away, it's your space. The parable is good, and makes me think of the opposite side of the coin - the old saying, "no single raindrop believes istelf to blame for the flood."

  3. I didn't believe the science of climate change until I finally sat down and watched Al Gore's film "An Inconvenient Truth." I had put it off for years, dismissing it as the propaganda of a liberal politician. But after seeing the movie, I'm convinced he soft-sold the issue, that it's worse than he stated, and that we're well past the tipping point.

    It might not mean the end of mankind, but in a hundred years it could well mean the end of westernized civilization.

  4. I can't get over how people are blinded with the desire to utilize natural energy on their rooftops with solar panels instead of finding a way to do their gardening on the rooftop. I know it's something from the far side, but solar panels encourage using more electricity, IMO, whereas utilizing the space of one's rooftop to plant vegetation restores some of the green that was removed to make space to build.

  5. From what I understand of solar panels, they can be expensive to install, but here in Australia, you can trade the solar energy back to your electricity company. This is designed to put solar-powered electricity back into the grid and, in the longer term, should result in a drop in both your electricity useage and costs. My household runs on the smell of an oily rag already and we are conscious of trying not to waste energy. We grow a few of our own vegetables and there's a lemon tree in my backyard, but it only sprouts lemons in winter. Great for cups of tea, but not so good for gin and tonics. That's a summer drink, after all.