‘…so, the need of the hour is to start caring for mother nature. The nurturer needs to be nurtured otherwise very soon our only home may be lost forever’ the narrator on tv finished & credits started rolling. A 10-year-old Sam was intently watching the show on the discovery channel that night. It spoke about man made destruction of nature post industrialization & though the ten-year-old may not have fully understood the gravity of the present environmental crisis he did have a few questions about the topic he needed answers for. ‘Mimi, I want to ask you something’ Sam said running to his mother in the bedroom. She was making dreamcatchers at the time & seeing her son run to her she kept her work aside to put him in her lap. ‘Mimi why is nature called our mother & what is wrong with her?’ It was a very simple question from a 10-year-old, but it’s implication & answer was too complicated for him to understand. I’ll have to make the answer simple for this little boy to understand, mother thought.
Holding him sitting on her lap, she slowly started to rock her body back and forth. ‘Sam can you tell me why you call me mother?’ ‘Because you gave birth to me’ Sam answered immediately. Mother smiled & continued, ‘Like a mother nature gives birth to life, it is in the lap of mother nature that trees & plants can grow. Which in turn is essential to our oxygen supply without which humans will all die.’ ‘Oh, so mother nature grows trees & plants which give us oxygen to survive so we must take care of her? Then why don’t we & what is wrong with her?’ Sam asked innocently again without understanding the complexity of his question. Mother smiled and kissed little Sam on the forehead, ‘Little boy you ask too many questions. Ok, let me explain to you the whole situation properly. About mother nature & father sky. What I am about to explain to you is what your Mimi thinks & you are free to disagree with me & have your own thoughts on this. ‘
‘As I see it, the workings of nature are no different from the setup of our family. It has a father, mother & kids. Do you know in many ancient cultures if nature was their mother, the sky was their father. For me it makes sense even more so if we compare it to our family. As you yourself say it, the job of the father is to provide for the family, the mother’s job is to take care of the family properly & the kid’s job is to go to school & grow up in life properly.’ Sam nodded, he knew in his mind the meaning of family & the way each member had a given duty to perform in the setup. ‘But Mimi how is nature like our family?’ ‘Think about it Sam, inside the dark earth a small seed slowly germinates, it grows roots & breaks the surface into the light to emerge in the world as a small sapling. Mother nature has given birth to life but it is now her job to help this plant grow bigger & nurture it till it dies but she can’t do it alone!! She needs water & sunlight to nurture her baby & that comes from the sky. Hence the ancients called the sky father because it provided the things necessary for mother nature to provide for its children.’ ‘oh now I see it Mimi, you gave birth to me & have to take care of me till I grow old. For that, papa provides things like the sky gives rain & sunshine. Now I get it, nature too works like our family but then how is she our mother, she only gives birth to plants & trees!!’
‘Sam as you grow up you will learn that both Science & Nomo Nomo (Sam’s reference word for spirituality) differ in most of the ways they see and perceive the workings of this world but one thing they loosely agree to is the birth of life. In their own ways through mythological stories & scientific experiments both concur that life has been born out of nature. Trees, animals, insects, fishes, humans none of us would have been here if it were not for the efforts of Father Sky & Mother Earth. They changed everything & gave life to this once barren earth but that my little boy you will learn in more detail as you grow up.’
‘Ok so if the grown-ups know that nature is our mother why are they destroying it?’ was Sam’s next question. ‘Sam, like the children born out of the same parents are not similar the kids born of mother nature are not the same. We humans turned out to be the smartest kid from mother nature & father sky. We today have reached the top of the food chain on this earth, it’s like being the best student of your class, school or maybe even the world.’ ‘If we are so intelligent then why are destroying nature?’ ‘Sam human intelligence has gone beyond intelligence of any species on this earth. We have proved throughout millennia that through our intelligence we can rule over all the species on this earth but that my son has made us arrogant. We have all the power within us but we do not use it properly. Call it negligence or arrogance, nothing else seems to be more important than our survival & I sincerely hope that man stops this devastation & destruction on their own mother like they……her voice trails off & she doesn’t complete her sentence. ‘Like they what Mimi?’ Sam’s voice broke the momentary lapse in her thought & composing herself she replies ‘like they are doing now. Now time for bed. You will know more about this question of yours as you grow up. Your mother can’t teach you everything & certainly not in one night.’ Tucking him into bed she gives the customary good night kiss & leaves his room.
Coming out of his room she gives a last glance to her sleeping son & a wry smile comes on her face. It was about the time she stopped talking briefly. She didn’t have time then but now she could give more time to the seed of thought that broke through her subconscious mind. Ironical as it maybe, she thought as she started cleaning up for the night, the similarity in family & nature also finds similarity in destruction of mother nature. Like nature the women in today’s world are being subjected & humiliated with archaic practices. Like mother nature our human mothers too suffer the brunt of man’s arrogance & physical superiority. Crimes against women across the world, whether they be from the so call fanatical underdeveloped or the industrialized developed nations of the world, are at an all-time high. The two genders are at war like never before in history. More & more of today’s women are speaking up in this male dominated world. Like nature revolts sometimes so do our women but it’s not enough to create an impression, till now. Why can’t humans learn the easy & simple fact of balance. Everything needs to be in balance to work properly. A one-sided relation dominated by one side never works & that applies from the smallest organism to the working of the entire universe.
She switched off the last light in the living room & got into bed, the thought still wanting an end to this conflict. None, she told herself, not till now but I wonder till when can the iron will of the two mothers be able to take this? When will the tipping point arrive? The solution as I see is balance, simple as it seems it’s not so easy to implement.