>This year marks the 40th anniversary for Earth Day. Today is a day that people everywhere celebrate our planet, and appreciate our precious environment. During yoga class tonight, our wonderful instructor read from Thich Nhat Hanh’s beautiful book: Peace is Every Step. This excerpt is not only appropriate for Earth Day, but is a beautiful reminder of how connected we all are to the earth, fellow animals and organisms, and our atmosphere:
The Sun My Heart
“We know that if our heart stops beating, the flow of our life will stop, and so we cherish our heart very much. Yet we do not often take the time to notice that other things, outside of our bodies, are also essential for our survival. Look at the immense light we call the sun. If it were to stop shining, the flow of our life would also stop, so the sun is our second heart, a heart outside of our body. This immense “heart” gives all life on Earth the warmth necessary for existence. Plants live thanks to the sun. Their leaves absorb the sun’s energy, along with carbon dioxide from the air, to produce food for the tree, the flower, the plankton. And thanks to plants, we and other animals can live. All of us–people, animals, and plants–consume the sun, directly and indirectly. We cannot begin to describe all of the effects of the sun, that great heart outside of our body.
Our body is not limited to what is inside the boundary of our skin. It includes even the layer of air around our Earth; for if the atmosphere were to disappear for even an instant, our life would end. There is no phenomenon in the universe that does not intimately concern us, from a pebble resting at the bottom of the ocean, to the movement of a galaxy millions of light-years away. Walt Whitman said, ‘I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journey-work of the stars…” These words are not philosophy. They come from the depths of his soul. He said, ‘I am large, I contain multitudes.'”
Wishing you many sunny days…