Acknowledging and Rethinking Humanity’s Place in the Natural World

by | Oct 18, 2022 | Animal Books, Animal World, Environment, Nature | 0 comments

Photo by Onkel Ramirez

Who’s Yawning Now? is a brilliant book on yawning lemurs, bears, monkeys, penguins, seals, and more, posing as a stark reminder of the beauty and wonder of nature and people’s relation to it.

Everything on Earth is deeply interconnected with one another, like cogs in an intricate machine. Take one away, and the gadget must readjust itself to compensate. Isn’t that what is happening to the world today? Because of human activity, climate change has altered ecosystems, species eradicated, and resources diminished. 

All these contribute to unnaturally increasing global temperatures and the worsening of climate disasters—from super typhoons, landslides, drought, and floods.

Looking at Geigert’s book on yawning lemurs and other animals, most would probably believe that these majestic creatures will still exist far off in the future for their descendants to see—but that is not the case.

Preserving and taking care of the environment requires humanity to rethink its place in the world and acknowledge its role in harming the Earth.

Nature is Essential for Humanity

The nearly 8 billion people on Earth rely on its ecosystems functioning correctly to survive. Humans need rivers, forests, oceans, and mountains to stay stable and keep society from crumbling, not to mention their need for biodiversity to endure. This global interdependence system allows food, water, air, and the world to be generally inhabitable.

Humanity is, and will forever remain, dependent and constituent of nature—as much as nature influences humans, humans influence nature as well—and there must be a willingness in everyone, from citizens up to the government, that human impact has largely been negative.

And that negativity is beginning to affect both nature and human society adversely.

Civilization is at the known height of technological advancement, and it seems there is still climbing that can be done, but humans are also at the peak of pollution.

The effects of unfettered human progress are apparent with recent news of dwindling water supplies, famines, and such.

Humanity must acknowledge its role over nature for anything positive to be done.

What is Humanity’s Place in the World?

Humankind has always had a tense relationship with nature. Humans can take and give back to nature with their capacity for upending natural orders and manipulating the world around them; their intellect and use of technology also allow them to create systems of coexistence with other species.

Yet, humanity has never acted benevolently with nature on a grand scale, never attempting to give but always taking: it has always been a relationship of exploitation and destruction of finite resources and limited space.

Humanity should reconsider its place in the world. There should be a shift towards subsistence from overexploitation. From a secular perspective, each life is granted self-determination; therefore, eroding the planet for self-serving reasons at the expense of other people and species is abhorrent. Even on religious grounds, humanity should be the steward of the Earth and strive to preserve its pristine wonder. Humans have abused nature far too much, and the backlash is now becoming evident.

As part of the natural world, humanity must be aware of its reciprocal relationship with Earth—and it is from there societies can think of and create solutions to remedy the sickness that humanity has spread over the world.

What Is There to Be Done?

An unimaginable effort will be needed for humanity to rethink its perspective and the relationship it has with nature and the Earth itself.

Growing demands for a paradigm shift in educational curricula call for a universal agreement on the human role in climate change and the encouragement of citizens to see themselves as part of an interconnected globe in terms of both an international and ecological community. Through the awareness of interdependent ecosystems, natural evolution, and global ecology, people are given the initiative and the knowledge to change the world for the better.

A universally consistent education can be a game-changer because it can transform the minds of future generations. At the same time, current and older generations begin working on programs to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Yet, while the world is changing slowly, people can attend rallies or marches to spotlight the environment, share messages and recommendations on social media, reach out to elected officials, promote books on nature, and, in general, be consciously aware of the world.

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