April 22 each year marks the celebration of Earth Day. Earth Day was founded in 1970 by Gaylord Nelson, then a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, after he witnessed the ravages of the massive 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, CA. At a time when awareness was shifting away from war, Nelson’s idea was to turn the energy of the anti-war movement toward the environment, and care for the earth.
Earth Day 1970 brought people together, eliciting support from Republicans and Democrats, the wealthy and the poor, city dwellers and farmers, business owners and labor leaders. The first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.
Today Earth Day still unites people and companies from around the Globe with a continued emphasis on caring for the earth, the environment, and the animals across all species. Earth Day 2015 put out the intention of seeing a billion seeds and trees planted, to give back in a way that will have a long term impact on the environment, in a positive, powerful way.
I am, as I have mentioned in previous posts, very connected to the earth and to growing things. I have felt a responsibility for maintaining and preserving this beautiful planet since early childhood. Yes, it’s my temporary home. However, it’s where we all learn and grow, realize our gifts and abilities and share them. If we don’t care for this amazing place, who will? We are the caretakers of the earth and of the animal life here and of each other, because caring for human life is just as important, just as crucial.
I take my role seriously, in myriad small ways: conserving energy, being mindful of the environment and teaching my children and grandchildren to be mindful as well, respecting ALL life, encouraging and supporting organizations and companies who are aware of our great charge as well, to care for the earth. And, I plant a variety of plants and trees.
Today I grabbed a few minutes between appointments to fulfill that desire to plant and tend growing things, working in my backyard, planting new plants, raking and admiring the return of last year’s plants. What a joy to be outside. And how mindful I was of the day and how thoughtful about ways I can better show care for this marvelous place I call home.
I was reminded of a phrase in the National Association of Realtors Code of Ethics, that always touches me deeply: “Under all is the land.” Such a simple statement, yet such a powerful truth. Beneath all that is, the buildings, the cities, the jungles, the opinions, the ideas, the beliefs, the feet of animals and humans…beneath me…is the land. The foundation. The sustainer and cradler of life here on earth. The land. The earth. I will do my part to take care of it, not from a sense of duty, but from a sense of love and joy. Happy Earth Day.