When I was on the beach this morning, I observed a seagull making his breakfast out of a baby loggerhead sea turtle. While watching it can create disturbing thoughts, it made me reflect on

Nature’s Recycle Program,

which is what many would call the “Cyle of Life” or “Circle of Life”. Sometimes we must stand waaaay back in order to see the big picture of things. Are we focusing too much on the academic approach to preserving our natural resources rather than spending the time to observe nature and just how they accomplish survival. Two things I’ve learned from Nature:

1) Nature isn’t always in balance in the short term. We must keep “CYCLE” as a major part of our sustainability program. If you see how nature works, sometimes you might have an infestation of locusts that eat your vegetation up. Without any chemical intervention, you can be guaranteed that there will be a level of destruction on that plant life; but it is rare that those infestations would be of global magnitude to threaten the extinction of a plant species.

In fact, Nature seems to be invariably swinging the pendulum. With a certain species of plants or animals growing in abundance until their mere presence has created the opportunity for the next step in the food chain to flourish because of their abundance.

Example: We have a lot of small insects that would be considered pests in our yard. We elect not to treat them with chemicals. The gecko’s and lizards now abound in our yard. And guess what has happened next? We now have a pretty good stable of snakes that are keeping the lizard population under control.

2) Nature’s survival of the fittest isn’t always pretty. Sometimes we do think we need to intercede in order to pacify our moral code of decency. That can be our downfall. I truly do believe that there would be a major change in dietary choices if individuals were forced to kill the food they eat… or even just be present when someone else takes on the grisly task.

circle-of-lifeThe cultures who revere the cycle of life have it right. We need to be grateful to this Earth who provides us with the food and shelter that makes our lives possible. Somehow we need to include that spiritual part of this Earth into our sustainability programs.

I hear some people cringing with even the slightest breath of “spiritual”. For you, I would like to challenge you to go deep into the forest, preferably by a stream or waterfall. Sit silently until your soul gets quiet, then tell me that you haven’t found spiritual.