The fires have come to teach us something.
Today, July 1, 2011, the state of New Mexico is fighting 7 huge wildfires, and countless smaller ones. From the city of Santa Fe, there is a fire in every direction, and one of them is really close to town, plainly visible on the ski slopes. The fire next to the city of Los Alamos, of “atomic” fame, is getting most of the attention. The largest fire in the history of the state is raging to the west of town. The state-of-the-art labs still contain radioactive waste, and some of it has been buried in the canyon nearby. All of that is threatened at this time. Fire consumes what is keeping it all buried, and toxic, fatal fumes can be released into the atmosphere. On the other hand, Santa Clara pueblo is surrounded by fire. They have already lost land that is sacred to the Indians. The pueblos of Cochiti and Tesuque are also threatened by the flames. The fourth of July approaches and many thoughtless people will want to light up fireworks for fun. Nature has lit fireworks to teach us something.
First lesson: As we saw in the case of Japan, greed and disregard for life created nuclear reactors near the ocean in a land often shaken by earthquakes. Greed and disregard for life created the labs at Los Alamos. We are all vulnerable to nuclear radiation. Nature, the Great Spirit, God, or the power of the universe is teaching us that sacrificing our natural resources for greed is pure absurdity.
Second lesson: It is time to give up on the nuclear idea. Solar power is safe, wind power is safe. Many other means of renewable power have been discovered, but have received little attention, and therefore, no funding. Nuclear power creates illness, mutations, and barren lands, but there is no lack of funds for that.
Third lesson: We need to let go. We need to become disentangled with old ways of thinking, with “traditional” views. A new era is upon us. What worked for some in the past may work for no one in the present and future. We need to be prepared to see more than hundreds of acres of forest lands go up in smoke.
Fourth lesson: Many come to live in New Mexico because “nothing” happens here. There are no hurricanes, no tornadoes, no tsunamis, no serious floods… We just have fires that devour forests every year. Nobody is outside the grasp of nature, especially when nature is being taunted, disrespected, and abused.
I have lived in Santa Fe since 2006. I love this place. I love the state of New Mexico. It is still the Wild West in many ways. Nuclear facilities don’t belong here. They don’t belong any where. At least we have no nuclear plants, but we do have toxic dump sites.
The entire world is going through changes. Disasters will continue and will increase exponentially. We must prepare inwardly, so we can act outwardly in compassion and love.