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#changethestory: We are living in an epoch switching moment in world history

People walking past a mural of kids playing with their face masks at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. The mural was painted by Bushy Wopp. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency(ANA)

People walking past a mural of kids playing with their face masks at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. The mural was painted by Bushy Wopp. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency(ANA)

Published Dec 29, 2020


by Lorenzo A Davids

We are standing on the edge of a new world. This new world does not come neatly wrapped in the bright colours and smiling faces we had hoped it would. Instead, it comes clothed in chaos and with the smell of death all around us.

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Humans despise disruption and discomfort. Yet renewal always comes with an embedded chaotic disruption. The lessons learnt from violent revolutions through to artistic renaissances, show that some have died to usher in the new order while others have died defending the old order.

Despite death on both sides, Mother Nature marches on in relentless pursuit of renewing herself. She is undeterred.

For something new to emerge, pain and uncertainty is always part of it. When a child is born, the risks stacked up against it right up until that child is safely within the arms of its mother are significant.

The placenta, known as the afterbirth, provided bed and board to that baby for most of his or her stay in the uterus. It fed the foetus, kept it safe, and supplied it with nutrients and minerals to develop. When that great moment of birth arrives, it represents the end of that in-utero era, and the beginning of a new era – life outside the womb – and traumatically so, without the placenta.

The placenta dies. The baby lives. And that switch-over period, from being warm, fed and safe in the uterus to being outside it, in the loving arms of a new caring nurturer, is filled, for a period, with much pain, chaos and uncertainty.

Every significant changeover period is both a mortuary and a maternity unit for Mother Nature's endless quest to renew the planet and protect it from the destructive practices of predators. From floods through to droughts, from forest fires through to ice ages. Mother Nature renews herself through each catastrophe. As humans, we either adjust to that transitional renewal, or that renewal destroys us.

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We are living in an epoch switching moment in world history. This has been one of the shortest epochs in the history of the earth, partly because we have consumed its resource capacity at such an alarming rate.

Across the globe, we are experiencing the planet renewing itself. After centuries of selfish human consumption of all available resources, most done to the detriment of other living organisms, humans are forced to take a back seat in this regenerative moment. Mother Nature is forcing us to step back from our predatory consumption. She is allowing the air to clean itself, the forests to breathe, and the oceans to glow.

Sadly, we have not yet discovered how to make a sustainable living in this new world. Everyone are in their starting blocks to “restart the economy". We are still too blind to see that Mother Nature is calling us to new ways of making a living. If we do not invest our blood, sweat and tears into the development of a safer planet and a new economy, we will only have ourselves to blame for the millions of dead humans who will not survive this current birthing process.

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If we don’t embrace and take on board the lessons the universe is calling on us to obey, more people will die.

Right now Mother Nature is giving birth – and each one of us has a choice: we can either be a placenta, that played a significant role in the past, but is of no use in the new environment it enters into and dies. It is discarded in the birthing process.

Or we can be the lifeblood of this new ecosystem that allows the new foetus to grow into a full celebratory and joyful human – having survived both epochs: pre-and post-birth.

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I call on us to watch the birthing of a better world, with piqued curiosity if you must, or to join in with celebratory excitement. This disruption is for our benefit as a planet.

* Lorenzo A Davids is chief executive of the Community Chest.

** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Media.

Cape Argus

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