The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Questioner (Q): In an earlier conversation, you mentioned that climate change is an expression of the sickness of our very soul. I found that to be a pretty daunting and scary way of putting it. My question is, how should we bring this topic and the awareness of what is happening to the planet to the general public without causing unnecessary fear or panic?
Acharya Prashant (AP): You see, if you tell a person, “Let us heal the climate, let us make the world a better place,” you would probably be able to arouse only a little bit of interest. That’s been the experience so far. We have held all kinds of awareness campaigns in various countries through various agencies, so much has been written, spoken, but people do not seem to heed. Everybody is caught in his own world, in his personal problems. People have their own desires, ambitions, fears, and families to take care of and lives to live. That’s how it is unfolding.
So, what I am proposing is, don’t tell people to heal the climate; tell them to heal their conscience, their life, their mind. That’s something they would be far more interested in. And if they can take care of their lives, their minds, their thoughts, the climate will be automatically taken care of. You will not need to bother so much about the climate, because the climate change is nothing but a consequence of how we are on the inside.
So, let’s treat the inside, and let’s keep the climate agenda a little aside for a while. When I say aside for a while, I do not mean that we neglect it or make it secondary; what I am saying is, you bring out, first of all, the core cause, the fundamental cause behind the crisis. Secondly, you bring out that which is useful, that which will practically work.
A fellow is emitting so much smoke and burning so much fossil fuel because he is not content within. Can we display this to him? Can we first of all understand that the entire ecosystem is actually constructed to feast on our sickness, our hollowness, and our vulnerabilities, and therefore one cannot rush to this system if one is feeling unwell inside? If you go to the system that feeds on your sickness, obviously it is not going to heal you, right? The system is not a doctor; the system is a…