What the heck is Deep Ecology?


August 2018:

Eliza’s green cookies

Episode #110 Reloaded (First published on April 24th, 2017. Forever relevant.)

I heard about “deep ecology” a few years ago, and I liked the essence from the start. I have read a bit about how it was initiated by Arne Naess, and influenced by Spinoza, Nietzsche, D.H. Lawrence, Muir, Thoreau, Heiddeger, Dolores LaChapelle, Gary Snyder, Fritjof Capra, Douglas Tompkins, etc. Up to now I only scratched the surface.

In areas of life beyond, say, mathematics or physics, I don’t care much about super theories, with perfect boundaries, where one feels forced to either agree with pretty much everything, or reject the whole of it. I rather search for authenticity, honesty, and a certain level of consistency. I let myself be inspired by ideas from some place, and enjoy complementing, and combining them with other ideas coming from somewhere else. I also leave my comfort zone from time to time… This protects me a bit from the temptation of constantly searching for the fly in the ointment (das bekackte Haar in der Suppe, my dears). I am not always immune to this attitude myself, but it makes me really mad. It’s easy to find something wrong everywhere, and end up dying inside.

I cannot say I am a “deep ecologist”. I am too spoiled as a native city neurotic. I’m a bit like a monkey, or a bear born in a zoo. I love the idea of the wild, but if you now let me free in the real wild, I will probably be eaten by the most stupid tiger…

Here’s one of the central ideas in deep ecology: All beings in nature are equally worth. In other words, I am no better than a cockroach, even though I find cockroaches highly disgusting, but if a cockroach would take a longer look at me, she would probably be of a similar opinion the other way around.

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