the radiant light that sustains Gaia

Starhawk calls the it “the Give-Away time of the Sun.” The superabundance of solar energy that makes possible our ecosystem, the radiant light that sustains Gaia, the very web of life of which we take part: This is a gift. We enjoy all this richness freely, nor are we merely recipients of this beneficence. We also participate in it. Like the flowers, we can flourish, creating something new and beautiful. The Give-Away is not just to us, but of us.

Bart Everson, Spinning in Place

Orphic Hymn to Gaia

Oh Goddess, Source of Gods and Mortals,
All-Fertile, All-Destroying Gaia,
Mother of All, Who brings forth the bounteous fruits and flowers,
All variety, Maiden who anchors the eternal world in our own,
Immortal, Blessed, crowned with every grace,
Deep bosomed Earth, sweet plains and fields fragrant grasses in the nurturing rains,
Around you fly the beauteous stars, eternal and divine,
Come, Blessed Goddess, and hear the prayers of Your children,
And make the increase of the fruits and grains your constant care,
With the fertile seasons Your handmaidens,
Draw near, and bless your supplicants.

Translated by Virginia Stewart

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rethinking our purposes

If human systems are to persist as a global subsystem of Gaia, then we will need to align our purposes with the functioning of Gaia. The longer we wait, the greater the risk. If economic growth is the purpose of the global economic system, then reconfiguring the current system means first and foremost rethinking our purposes. For human systems to be harmonious with the wider Gaian system, ecological sustainability must become a core human purpose.

Karen Litfin, Principles of Gaian Governance: A Rough Sketch

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Gaia in the News

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the Earth system is lawful and ordered

This recognition that the Earth system is lawful and ordered remains an integral part of indigenous understanding and governance in Africa. Moreover, whereas the dominant, human-centred legal paradigm objectifies the natural world as “property,” “resource” or “commodity,” identifying humans as sole subjects of law, the cosmologies of traditional peoples de-centre and re-situate the human as part of a “communion of subjects” within Nature. Humans are understood to be one constituent member among many others in a vibrant web of interdependent relationships that collectively compose Gaia, our living Earth.

Carlotta Byrne, “The Emergence of Earth Jurisprudence in Africa,” from The Conscious Lawyer #5, page 54

Footnote: “communion of subjects” is from Thomas Berry

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the animate Earth that enfolds us

Perhaps it is time to counter our dangerously outdated mechanistic worldview with a more fruitful, more soulful, science-based idea in tune with the wisdom of our ancestors that inspires us to uncover our deep indigenous connection with the earthly community of rocks, atmosphere, water and living beings — with the animate Earth that enfolds us.

Stephan Harding, “Animate Earth” in Earthy Realism: The Meaning of Gaia