Can Man Save the Planet?

Category: Life & Society Channel: Opinion Views: 12944

Save this, save that, save so many other things. Thus go the fervent appeals of those worried about the endangered planet. But can we really save the planet by saving this or that? Is the problem really that simple and straightforward? It seems we are not squarely facing the problem; we are paying attention to mere symptoms without looking into the root cause producing those symptoms. There is a deep disease that we have ignored to our peril. We are only playing a hide-and-seek game with ourselves. 

Now, what is the disease and where is it? The disease is in man, not in the planet. It is in man's view of himself. For many centuries, especially since the Western Renaissance, man has seen himself as the master of the planet who can treat it any way he chooses. Man has gloried in his cleverness and technological inventiveness, but his success is now bearing bitter fruit. The bitterness is getting worse and worse. His own existence is now seriously at stake. He has no one else to blame. In this, western man has led the way. The rest of the world gradually followed.

Man preferred to forget that he did not come to the world of his own will. He also preferred to forget that the planet and everything in it are not his own. He did not want to admit the possibility that there could be a vast scheme of things in which he has an appointed place and an appointed function, that there are laws that he cannot violate and boundaries he cannot transgress without facing great peril. His superior intelligence and abilities have been given him because he has a responsibility he must fulfill. If he refuses to do that and lives another way, he at once loses his justification for existence. He no longer has a place in the scheme of things.

Man preferred to see himself as the cleverest and the most technologically efficient animal. But he is animal nonetheless. So he prowled, plundered and robbed, killed and maimed anything and everything, including his own kind - the disadvantaged, the weaker and the less clever among his fellow men. He is still perfecting his technique in this demonic work.

This all-devouring, never satisfied animal that man has become is now trapped in a never-ending cycle of wasteful production and wasteful consumption. His economy stagnates and comes to a grinding halt unless he can spend on things that he could easily do without and are of no real value. His eating only whets his appetite for more. He has denied himself even the contentment of an animal of prey, that eats his fill and then relaxes in satisfaction. Pitiable creature that man has become!

Of all man's faculties the one he has abused most is his ability to use language. He invents alluring slogans to hide the truth, to flatter his own ego, and to mislead, deceive and exploit his own kind. But all the while he has remained self-deceived.

It looks doubtful whether the planet can be saved. The deep and repeated wounds man has inflicted on the planet are fatal. It is too late. In his pursuit of the world he has at last succeeded in getting himself banished from that very world he loves. Worse than that, he has banished himself from his true and noble self; he banished his soul in order to gain the world. His confident efforts only mock him now. He must accept the grim truth and get ready for his exit.

However, all may not yet be lost for man. He might still retrieve his soul by making one final choice. Will he continue to see himself as a mere clever animal, or will he try instead to see himself as a unique being in a supernaturally ordained scheme of things in which he has a unique role and responsibility? He can redeem himself through wholehearted recognition of his guilt and sincere repentance for his willful blindness and arrogance. He must submit to his Creator and Master and unconditionally accept his appointed role. The Master of the planet will take care of it in any manner He pleases. Man need not worry.


A K M Mohiuddin, born in 1945 in what is now Bangladesh, is a retired university teacher of English literature. He taught in university in Bangladesh and abroad for nearly 42 years. He can be reached at akmm45 [at] yahoo [dot] com.

  Category: Life & Society  Channel: Opinion
Views: 12944

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Older Comments:
TO AD from the writer: In place of the last two sentences of my aricle please read the following: If man sincerely tries to conduct his life the way his Creator and Master wants him to,that is with a proper understanding of his appointed function in the divinely ordained scheme of things, due humility and a deep sense of accountibility to his Master, then man has done his best. The rest is in the hand of the Master of All the Worlds.
Would you find this ok?

I agree with almost all that was said that made man currently the pathetic creature ever to live on the earth. But the concluding last two sentences of the article... "The Master of the planet will take care of it in any manner He pleases. Man need not worry." What on earth does this mean? If there is any time that man needs to worry for himself it should be now. If we pray to Allah to take care of the collapsing man's habitat the way He pleases, then i'm afraid we are asking for something that the result may not be at all palatable to us. So yes we REPENT and yes we equally WORK the WORK assidously towards achieving that bliss both here and the hereafter.

This pure, Christian view in perfect line with the teachings of Y'Shua Ha Massiach has appeared here, to the surprise of a true Muslim, the follower of true Islam (the original Christianity).
Gratitude to the author, mainly because he is a Christian by this view yet unable to name Christ in the Mohammedan domain of things that seeks to supplant Christ (His peace and blessings be on us).
That Salvation is possible for man when he ceases from himself and turns to his Lord in humility and repentance, seeking acceptance with God through the Savior Jesus Christ. I agree with the author in Toto.
What is ISLAM if any know of the Origin of this word? To me it means Christ is good, Christ is Peace or peace of Christ. Therefore, Islam without Christ is like dowry without the bride. Are people too selfish to like the gift but hate the person from whom it comes? This Christ is willing to save every one that likes to gain the whole world while his own soul is in lost condition.