Before getting into why I'm not particularly worried about the 'delicate' balance of nature, a clarification: I'm a practicing Catholic, not a pagan.
Although I use the term 'Mother Nature' now and then: I am well aware that there is no such person. I don't worship Thor and Odin, either, when it comes to that.
I'm also of the opinion that the Bible "...is not intended to be read as history text, a science book, or a political manifesto." ("Bible Is for Catholics," Office of Media Relations, USCCB)
Which means that I don't have to keep a death-grip on what American Bible-thumpers want to believe is true.
I'll put it this way: Bishop Ussher wasn't a member of Catholic holy orders; scientists like Copernicus and Mendel were. (November 24, 2009; October 26, 2009)1
Do I think people should try to save endangered species? That's a qualified "yes."
I think people can decide to have a shot at keeping pandas, or narrow-leafed milkweed, or any other particular species, alive. Whether we should divert resources to 'save the milkweed' programs - that's the sort of thing I'll be writing about as Earth Day approaches.
What doesn't make sense to me is the notion that life on Earth should stay exactly the way it was in 1850. Or 1950. Or this year.
One thing that doesn't change in this world is - change. That's hardly a new idea:
"Nothing endures but change."Critters that can deal with change - don't seem to die out all that quickly.
(Heraclitus, 540 BC - 480 BC) (from Drifting at the Edge of Time and Space (October 29, 2009))
Think about it: have we ever seen rats, pigeons, or cockroaches on an 'endangered species' list?
And cockroaches - with relatively minor changes - have been around for a long, long, long time. (Apathetic Lemming of the North (May 24, 2009))
Which brings up an interesting point.
I noted, in 'Apathetic Lemming,' that cockroaches had been "nibbling their way through Earth's history" when the first triceratops hatched - and kept going long after the last dinosaur died.
I'm a practicing Catholic. That makes me a 'religious person.' And I talk about dinosaurs without ranting?!
That segues into:
I don't doubt that folks with ideas like that are sincere. I do think that whether their beliefs and assumptions are accurate is debatable. "Dubious" might be a better way to put it.
But - and I think this is important - an idea can have crazy supporters and still be true. Just not, maybe, the way the fanatics say it is.
In a way, I can see their point.
I grew up in a part of the country with endemic anti-Catholicism: which indirectly led to my becoming a Catholic. And that's yet another topic.
Between radio preachers, 'Bible prophecies,' and book burnings, I can see why Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi is supposed to have said this:
"I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."The struggle to conform my will to that of God: is yet again another topic.
(attr. Gandhi) (from (December 10, 2010))
I've written about odd (my opinion) approaches to Christian belief before, including these posts:
- "America: We're Not All Sapps"
(April 1, 2011)
- "The Pope's 'Fundamental Priority,' and the 'Dark Side' of Bible Study"
(November 19, 2010)
- "Religion isn't Bad?"
(April 12, 2010)
- "Haiti: Voodoo, Pat Robertson, and the Catholic Church"
(January 16, 2010)
- "The Pope, the Antichrist, and Fu Manchu"
(October 2, 2008)
There are quite a few folks who seem convinced that being religious and being rational are mutually exclusive conditions:
"Rational arguments don't usually work on religious people. Otherwise, there wouldn't be religious people."I don't see it that way - but I'm a convert to Catholicism: and this is a faith that we're not supposed to take with our brains turned off.
- Doris Egan (from (June 19, 2010))
I don't believe that science and technology is gonna kill us all, either.
And I certainly don't believe that I have to stop thinking to be a Catholic. Quite the reverse.
And I've written about that. Fairly often, I see. Including these posts:
- "God's Creation: He Seems to Think Big"
(September 23, 2010)
- "Physics and God, Hammers and Architects"
(September 7, 2010)
- "Science, Faith, and Auto Mechanics"
(August 19, 2010)
- "It's Faith and Reason"
(June 19, 2010)
- "Home Schooling, Religious and Moral Instruction, and American Culture"
(March 6, 2010)
- and see "Science, Religion, and being Catholic "
- "When to Call Tech Support, When to Read the Bible"
(January 14, 2011)
- "Studying the Bible: Carefully"
(November 16, 2010)
- "God Knows, I Don't: And That's Okay"
(November 14, 2010)
- "If Catholics aren't Supposed to Read the Bible, How Come We're Told to Read the Bible?"
(May 31, 2010)
- "Global Warming, End Times - 'We're All Gonna Die' Over the Last 45 Years Or So"
(October 3, 2009)
1 Actually, whether or not Copernicus was a priest or not seems to be in debate. But since the King Sigismund of Poland put Copernicus on the list of four candidates for the vacant episcopal seat of Ermland (Catholic Encyclopedia), I'm willing to assume that Copernicus became a priest somewhere along the way.
And those are other topics.