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Earth Day Message
|by Dr. Kumarendra Mallick|
Today is Earth Day. Seeing a devastating oil spill in Santa Barbara in 1969, the Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson mooted the idea of spreading the concept of protecting the earth and its environment from degradation by involving people. April 22, 1970 was declared as Earth Day, and more than 500 million people took part in the event. Today it is observed in 175 countries, and UNO has extended its full support to popularise the concept to save the earth.
While this new concept considers earth as an separate entity; in sharp contrast, however, in ancient India earth was taken as our mother and was worshipped along with other gods. The mountains, the rivers, the oceans, the trees and every object on earth were considered sacred. In modern times people who believe in rational thinking and secularism etc may find the Indian views odd and archaeic. But these concepts served a great deal to save the environment.
Out of respect people do not cut five plants in India; these are tulsi, neem, bel, peepal and banyan. It is believed that these five plants release oxygen 24 hours, even at night time! There is therefore no religion in it. It is pure rational!
Considering the 2004 tsunami following Sumatra earthquake and this year's recent tsunami after Japan earthquake have given us the warning as to where man stands to tackle such issues for human survival. Added to that indiscriminate felling of trees specially in the rain forests in Amazon, others valleys and forests in each and every country in the name of mining, industry and other activities may leave the earth surface without green cover. The profit mongering nations, specially the rich countries, have spread disaster over the earth by prolification of chemical industries in particular. The water is polluted, the air is polluted and there is pollution everywhere.
The earth has limited resources. If the developing countries use the resources as the developed nation even five earths can not provide the required raw material. Unnecessary wars, overproduction of industrial goods, increase in wastages and excessive exploitation of natural resources have added further woes.
Celebration of Earth Day is just a beginning, and not a remedy. However, if I am not considered non-rational and conservative, we need to give an icing of spirituality to the whole excercise. Let us respect the earth and its environment, the air, the water, the seas and oceans, the hills and valleys, the forests and the flowers.
Disarmament will go a long way to save the earth. Nuclear waste need to be handled with great care. The other important concept for development, specially after the financial meltdown that plagued the world in recent time, should not to be driven by greed, but by need.
Image (c) Gettyimages.com
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04/22/2011 12:42 PM
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