E.O. Wilson Died, Who Cares?
One of my all time favorite heroes and inspiration is gone, will we listen to his wisdom in time?
Very Unpopular Strong Opinions Blog by Christyl Rivers
We will miss you
Not wishing to be doom and gloomy about it, I wish to honor the life of world famous entomologist E. O. Wilson. But that feels difficult when something just sneaks up on you at Christmas time.
Wilson warned the world that we are in peril. That’s a really good thing. He has known for decades that we are despoiling the natural world, living by stealing the future, and increasing extinction events up to one-thousand fold.
Yes, that does sound dire. However, knowing things means you can do things about it. And all hope comes from snapping out of denial, that continual shiny trap of “Everything’s is going to be OKAY!” to realize that our house is on fire.
Lots of people survive house fires, after all. They get out. They start again. Sometimes they lose their beloved Scruffy or Fluffy, but they live on, wiser and more prepared.
Maybe that is what really has to happen. Maybe our senses won’t really come alive until we smell the smoke, mourn the last polar bear, swim for our lives, wonder why we thought letting go of Florida seemed like “no great loss.”
But losing any part of Earth, even those we think of as useless “swamp” is a huge loss to which we must be more attuned.
Therefore, let’s all be brave about this great loss. After all, the ants who must inspire us have brains smaller than a grain of rice (some even less) but they collect into a social super-organism that cooperates for survival.
We too can get that intelligent! We have to believe, as Dr. Wilson did, that it is at least possible. He wanted a half Earth set aside for nature to protect and defend us, but nature, he knew, also inspires and heals us.
We can be almost as good as ants…
We too, can cooperate for survival, and to protect the limitless beauty of a wonderful, wonderful world.
Desmond Tutu and Joan Didion also died recently. While the Jay Dub (James Webb Space Telescope) flies higher and higher, I like to think that something like a great soul is on his or her way; exploring, discovering, becoming part of the much bigger and grander superorganism that is still in circle and cycle, still wandering our fragile orbit around the great and glowing sun.