Remembering Paradise
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Remembering Paradise • Posted: Nov 14, 2018 10:44:42Comments WelcomeVote CoolPhotoblogsPurchase a PrintShare

If you’ve seen the news lately, you have probably heard about the incineration of Paradise, a small town in the northern portion of California. Today’s body count lists 48 dead, more than one hundred still missing, thousands of structures destroyed. Estimates are in the tens of billions to rebuild. Investigators report sparks from poorly maintained power lines strung through the trees may have been the cause.

The news, of course, is filled with tragedy. So much so, we are becoming numb to it all. And no one, least of all our current fearless leader, is willing to take responsibility for any of it. The response seems always to be “It’s the other guy’s fault”. When will the reality of our problems sink in? And, when will we all look each other in the eye and acknowledge the problem is us. We need to take responsibility, all of us do, individually and collectively. The walls are closing in and there is no other way out than to acknowledge the realities we face and to work within them.

The concepts of One World and Citizen of Earth really need to be earnestly adopted, right now. Anyone thinking they can perhaps gain an edge over the rest of us is truly fooling themselves. Just think for one second about the technology that we use in our daily lives, from our cell phones to our automobiles to our microwave ovens and coffee makers. Are you or I capable of fixing any of those items should they fail? Or, are we capable of building new ones when they wear out? Do you or I even thoroughly understand electricity? Or, how to make steel or plastic or concrete? Do you or I know how to test water to see if it is safe to drink, or how to purify it if need be? Can you or I treat a wound or illness? Would you or I starve if there were no more restaurants or even grocery stores? The probability we, all of us, could in short order find ourselves back in the stone age, with little ability to find our way back to civilization as we have come to know it, is very real and growing daily.

The truth is, we need each other. We need our separate knowledge stores and skills. We need cooperation and collective focus on creating and sharing resources. We need to stop right now with our petty bickering and jealousies. We need to forget about getting ahead and achieving fame or fortune, or even championing our various religions. Instead, we need to think about contributing to the cause, the cause of ensuring sustainable survival for humankind and the environment that supports us.

I have visited Paradise CA several times. A good friend has a home on the side of a mountain, amidst hundreds of trees, not far from a reservoir and a dam, just outside Paradise in the old mining town of Magalia. He and his dogs are safe now and unharmed in San Francisco, but his home is very likely not there anymore. And, neither are his hundreds of books and knickknacks, nor his tools and camper trailer, nor his ATV, or bicycles, or his thousands of photographs and artworks, or his accordion. Sad, very sad. And yes, a very personal loss. But, the point is, there are just too many of these increasingly numerous close personal losses. They are occurring all around us and marching toward us at an alarming and horrifying rate.

September in Paradise, up in the mountains north of Sacramento, high above the productive farms outside Yuba City and Oroville, surrounded and intermingled with pine forests that extend for miles and miles, overlooking Butte Creek below its long ridge and the Feather River flowing through its long canyon, once existed just like in the pictures above, rustic, homey, unpretentious, peaceful, close to nature. Today, it is a smoking ruin of untold horror for those who once lived there.

Those horrors are coming your way faster than you may have ever imagined. Take responsibility. You, you and your neighbors, take responsibility and put a stop to all the self-serving get ahead carnage that has been creating these horrors. You, you and I, and all of our neighbors, we are the only heroes who can and must save this planet for humankind and all the life that supports existence upon it. Be a hero. Do it now.

Wednesday, September 13th, 2017