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Restoring Reverence

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The application by Shell to prospect and mine for gas in the Karoo in South Africa by way of hydraulic fracturing raises huge environmental concerns. Once again one sees the mechanistic mind at work, its characteristics a litany of ruination.

Having little reverence, the mechanistic mind struggles to recognize the value of presence in anything. No real sense of wonder or mystery is grasped. It simply treats everything as lifeless objective material to be shoved around and used at its behest. It’s dead to the unity of all things and has little respect for nature’s mysterious and exquisite interconnectedness. It selfishly uses people and nature, with material profits dominating its ends. Profoundly sad, but deadly in its application.

How we long for that kind of spirit that discerns the sacred presence in all things, the spirit that knows only too well that when it diminishes people and the rest of nature, it dimishes itself, and when it diminishes itself it diminishes others. Nothing is more desperately needed than restoring our capacity for reverence.

The functional mind seeks only to own and control and to make a profit, while the reverential mind allows things to be and celebrates their sanctity, beauty, and presence without seeking to own and control.

Which mind will triumph in the Karoo? We don’t know, but the struggle has begun.

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About Don Scrooby