With the wind howling I went to Castle Sands
How fleeting life is, how quickly the world can take back what we are given
We are but tenants of the land we live on
How completely at the mercy of the waves we really are
No one, no matter what they have done can be more immune to the sea than
Their fellow humans
I think the greatest ability that we have gained in recent times is the ability to create significance, whether it is personal, or constructed around ideas and objects, or a section of society. With that construction of the belief that what we do matters, that the lives we lead can be beautiful and powerful, humans have reached higher and climbed further than any species before us.
But, the idea of relative significance, whether that be relative to one’s race, religion, gender, or species, brings the risk of losing sight of the bigger picture. The land is permitting us to live off of it, we are totally at its mercy as we see in places that suffer natural disasters, famines, or droughts. Hierarchies are dangerous because eventually, we can come to the conclusion that we are more important than the earth itself. These politicized ideas about global development, free markets, and human rights mean naught if we are not able to be responsible stewards of our rented home. How environmental concerns are not at the fore of governance, the audacity we have to suggest that ecological policy should only addressed if it benefits the states involved, is naïve and ignorant. One day, the world will face a reckoning. The sun, the waves, and the trees have existed long before us, and will still be here when our footprints have all been washed away. Nothing is more powerful, or more significant, than the water. It alone gives us life, and it has the power to take it away in an instant.
By Alexander Lefebvre