It has been several moon cycles since I posted (including a super moon this last Sunday) and the world has literally shifted both in global and local realms. Miller was consistently concerned with man’s impact on the earth and wrote in an undated letter circa 1954 held in the SLNSW Mitchell manuscript collection:
‘In 1918 I wrote a letter which I sent to a newspaper in Melbourne. It was about the unknown subject – treatment of the earth. I asked where does the dust, of the dust storm come from, re we sure it is not our best earth, and I concluded by saying treating the earth wrongly will provoke a reply from the earth which will be like the playful paw of the tiger which will strip the flesh from the bone No one, none of my friends paid any heed except to think I was mad. In later years around 1935 I wrote about the new form of the earth. I put it in many ways: no one paid any heed…’
Miller also spoke in his 1930’s letters about having respect for our impact on the land and to learn from ancient people’s knowledge. He was speaking specifically with reference to Australia about the aborigines but in New Zealand too he rejoiced in the Maori connections to the land and their celebration through dance and music. Why is it such a big ask for modern man to pause and dwell on how we can live most harmoniously within our universe – if the retort falls always to economics…to school yard – ‘there is no point if the rest of the world is not acting too’, well, don’t get Miller talking about big business or the business mind of any sort – his response toward minds that prioritise the harmony and exponential rise of dollar figures at the cost of the earth and humanity makes him roar and brandish claws striking deeper than a tiger.
No matter whether you believe in Miller’s tiger’s paw or not, our Earth is living and provides us with life. We are the only beings who continue to look at our own needs before listening to the earth. It is time to take care of the earth for the future prior to blatant exploitation in the name of economics and politics.
Energy is shifting in the world. This is most overtly realised by the activity of the tectonic plates but it is also shifting within those who choose to live examined lives. Change, hazards and challenges take many forms. I dedicate this post to my friends who through love and sharing of dialogue enrich their own existence and mine, and so many others in their orbit. Healing and restructure is a solo and collective effort demonstrated most profoundly by all those who continue the unenviable task of restoring and rebuilding after the recent earth events.
Our Miller descendants have been directly impacted by the earthquake in Christchurch, in considering this, along with Miller’s aesthetic respect and affinity with the Japanese, I offer these links here:
Don’t play into media identified compassion-fatigue, if you haven’t already, choose one, give what you can and send thoughts of strength to the remarkable people who are on the ground in all these areas – supporting, grieving and surviving.