Have you ever heard of the word, “biophilia”? It was new to me just a week ago. I stumbled upon a research article, where the writer placed Edward O. Wilson, the Harvard University biologist, naturalist, and entomologist, who coined the term right up there with the most learned on the earth. Biophilia refers to the human need to feel close to their natural environment .. and that just about sums it up for me. I am happiest when I’m at the sea… happier still when I’m in the water. If there’s lush green foliage covering the hillside all around me… it just makes it all the more soothing for the eyes. I know that time and time again I’ve been fortunate enough to experience true bliss when floating on my back, comforted by warm Mediterranean waters. Fort those moments, when I’m extremely present… and my ears know nothing but the sounds of the sea, I remember that life began in the sea, and if we want to connect with that part of us that has been around for eons then it's essential that we all have a chance to enjoy the sea!
We want to enjoy the sea, yes, and yet we want also for all future generations to enjoy it. This is when we have to remember that we are all custodians of the planet… and that the sea covers 70 percent of it. I see in future, educators bringing even greater awareness of the needs of our precious planet to our children from the earliest of school days - perhaps even before school begins - and allow for this knowledge to ripple-up.
Going “zero waste”, ensuring we carefully dispose of waste and making the choice to use only eco-friendly, biodegradable products is just the beginning. It’s a good idea to learn more about our local environment and just how our closest ecosystems rely on minute individual components in order to maintain balance. In addition to learning the facts, we also need to learn the “how to” — the practical applications that will ease the load on our coastal environment. For this to happen, we need to create a movement, one that involves the entire community and has every member, young and old, join hands to get behind the effort.
Kids already sense their ties to the natural world. They need to be affirmed in their instinctual, loving ways. If every child born to us grew to love the environment and worked with the planet, not against it, we would soon know the beauty of a world transformed. We are two-legged peace activists, every single one of us… and the sea needs us as much as we need the sea.
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