Monday, January 29, 2007

I woke up in the night and looked out at the night sky. The tall forest trees were standing stark and bare in the glare of the cold moon. I wondered for a moment if there were others looking out at such a sight.

Perhaps too few.

I ask how we are to adjust our lives to live in greater harmony with the earth and its resources, when we live so isolated from it...not feeling its heat or cold except when we move from the comfort of our homes to the comfort of our cars to the comfort of our offices and then home...not seeing its beauty or knowing its wonder.

Thousands of generations of our human kind lived in adaptation to nature and in harmony with it. Thousands of generations left hardly a mark on our planetary resources.

Tonight at the Eureka Springs Library, we have a presentation by one of the 1000 people trained by Al Gore to bring the message of challenge and hope that we can live in greater harmony and responsibility with the earth. It is a daunting task. Even making a few small changes that lessen our comfort and bring us to a vision of the cold night sky involve risk and effort and change in consciousness.

At Clear Spring School, we have a camping program for students from 1st grade through 6th. Twice each year, our students brave the night sky, sit around campfires, run in the woods, sleep in tents, tackle the unexpected, prepare their own food at campfires, and learn about the ways all our ancestors lived and about how some on our small planet still live. A few days in the woods may not seem enough, but it is something all our children need if we are ever to live in greater harmony with earth. The photos above, at left and below are of a Clear Spring School Campout. The photo at the top shows a patrol group with their flag. The patrol group concept presents great opportunity for the children to learn democratic leadership skills. The world is our classroom.

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