Raising Up a Fire: Rekindling the Land Ethic

The culture of 'more' is eating away at our culture. This attitude of bigger, higher, faster, is galvanizing the outdoor recreation community to create a new definition for the word 'stoke'. Recent editorial pieces in High Country News met this phenomenon head on. Upon reading them, it was important to share them with the Land Ethic Leader community of the Aldo Leopold Foundation. They are always seeking current pieces to deliberate and discuss with those whose land ethic is always evolving. And in return, they generously invited me to craft a response to Linck's and Geltman's pieces.
Now it is crucial to revisit Aldo Leopold's Land Ethic. An ethic always is built on the premise that we are all members of a community of interdependent parts. Leopold is wise to offer the Land Ethic which "broadens the boundaries of the community to include the soils, waters, plants, and animals, or collectively: the land." He reminds us that "people are not conquerors of the land, but instead plain members and citizens of the land." (Leopold, 1949)

Thinking Communities
What if every community was a true thinking community willing to listen, speak respectfully, and work to seek common ground within the community in order to move forward together? Ethics evolve as people learn from history, the landscape, and each other. "Nothing so important as an ethic is ever written... it evolves in the minds of a thinking community." (my hero, Aldo Leopold, 1949).  

May be all be participating members of a thinking community. Let the autumn campfire discussions and storytelling commence!


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