Tuesday, September 04, 2007

the 11th Hour

Whew, what a weekend. With triple digit temperatures, a random 4 a.m. thunder storm, one brown out, and a small earthquake Sunday morning, uh, I think someone is trying to tell us something! We took refuge at a movie theater yesterday afternoon finding it quite appropriate to be watching the 11th Hour.
The idea behind everyone's message -- the earth is sick, it needs healing. The earth will survive it's sickness, but will we? The earth had been around for billions of years morphing from one form to another. We on the other hand are just one civilization occupuying the planet. Are we driving ourselves to extinction? This movie interviews dozens of independent experts who each explain, mostly through science, what brought us to the point. Industrialism, our addiction to fossil fuels, the myth that we have a limitless supply of resources, has advanced us beyond our expectations, but this as also made us become more separate from nature, therefore are not fully aware the harm that we are causing. As one woman said in my Sustainable Works Workshop, you feel so horrible and guilty in the first half of the movie, thank god the second half is about hope and the reality is that most of human kind never had the intent to be this destructive. We just weren't aware. Now is the time to become more aware and not ignore the things we hear in the news, but to take action within our own lives.

If we look at this as an opportunity, it is an exciting time to be able to redesign, well, everything we know with a new frame of mind, a new purpose to make sure the products we create from this point forward are reusable, recycable, creating the least impact to the earth. It's the idea of cradle to cradle instead of cradle to grave. It gives me, as a designer, a purpose larger than myself and beyond just trying to make a living.
Feeling overwelmed about all this is normal, so as a general rule of thumb, I'm realizing that it is more simply about SLOWWWING DOWWWWN - what are we really buying, what we are eating, where are we always going, do we really need all these material things, do we really need to consume this much???
Go see it, and see it in theaters to support the movie financially.

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