from Sisters of Earth

Pax Gaia Programs
Sisters of Earth Reflections

Mother Earth is Calling
Kristi Denham


I have a picture on my altar at home that came to me originally as a note card from a girlfriend years ago. I tucked it in the back of my small sacred space — a bookshelf in my bedroom where I go to reflect on what is most important to me. The picture shows a beautiful Black Madonna with a dark-skinned Baby Jesus perched on one arm while the two of them balance the Earth between them. The picture reminds me daily of my values and speaks a prayer in my heart that has no words.

All week the single image of the Earth as photographed from space has been hovering front and center in my consciousness. A green-blue marble floating in space, sparkling with lights in some parts, swirling with clouds, white polar ice defines her direction in a limitless sky. It is an image first recorded from satellite some 47 years ago, an image of home as seen by an outsider.

We are the first generation of our species to be able to imagine our planet whole. Scientists now speak of her as Gaia, a place so teeming with life that she is seen as life herself. We are relatively recent inhabitants of her gardens, yet we seem hell-bent on destroying her.

We think of ourselves as special, created in the image of God, because of our ability to self-consciously reason and create. We believe we have been given the right to dominion over our Mother Earth, but we take no responsibility for that gift.

That image of our Mother Earth floating in the cosmic soup of a majestic universe seems detached. We can imagine the earth "out there," and too easily forget we are there with her, intimately connected to all her woes. If her ice caps melt, everything changes; we are so connected to her story. Yet we make our choices oblivious to their effects upon her: one more plastic convenience here, one more SUV there, what difference does it make?

Perhaps it is our very capacity to intellectualize, rationalize and detach that bodes most danger for our Mother and for our survival as a species, for the survival of all species. Our ability to remove ourselves from the web of life, at least in our thinking, has contributed to our ability to act with impunity.

Governments speak of our addiction to oil. It is addiction to unconscious choices — from consumerism to drugs — that allows us to continue down a path of imminent peril. "I don't want to think about it." So we pop another pill, watch a bit more television, go shopping, clean the house with chemicals that hurt the environment. Oh well.

Mother Earth calls us to account. She may simply shake us off as the destructive parasites we've become. Our image of God status denigrated to the image of the cockroaches we have become.

Our Mother loves us and longs for us to change. She has nurtured us with her very life and calls to us with warnings we are finding harder to ignore.

Now, if we could just stop fighting with one another long enough to listen, we might be able to change. Our Mother is calling, and she can't wait until Earth Day for our response.

Article first published on in January, 2007. Rev. Kristi Denham's church keeps working to become a Green certified church and she is working to become a better steward of creation in the personal choices she makes.

Reflections from Sisters of Earth

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For the Children and Future Beings
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One More Year of Life for the Fig Tree
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Human Change
by Jackie Graham


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