(Image: Inner demons: worshiping industrial produce)
Yesterday Earth had told Grete that BHG are bent upon killing her. Grete could not sleep.
“Why?” Grete sobbed. “We were not like this before.” Then she remembered Earth saying, “We will talk about it later.” At the same time, she recalled what Alexander Humboldt had said more than two hundred years ago, that nature was a living whole pouring life over plants, animals, air, water, stones and humankind. It’s a web connecting everything. So where is the problem?
Curious Grete skipped her breakfast and hastened to see Earth.
Earth foresaw Grete’s coming.
“I was so happy to see you on TV last night,” said Earth hugging Grete tenderly. “It appears that more and more health-giving BHG are trying to help you fight the multitude of malign ones. I do feel a little relieved. But my fever is rising unabated. I see that you do not have many followers; mostly of them are young, incapable of knowing their own inner demons. I wonder how they will subdue or eradicate the I-ness gene now camouflaged in a different manner. Nevertheless, I adore you for what you are doing – trying to mutate them from inside.”
“My dear Earth, I see only darkness. I need light and courage from you,” Grete pleaded. “You know I was a little reassured when Steven Pinker assessed that my fellow BHG have become more angel-like, fighting less, showing more kindness, becoming less greedy, more loving and charitable. But I see no good effect on your health; you are getting sicker. I have a dreadful sinking feeling. There must be something amiss in Pinker’s judgement. Only you can enlighten me.”
“Grete, I sympathize with your feelings. BHG’s inner demons have mutated and are hidden in another part of the body. Have you not noticed that these angel-like attributes you just mentioned apply mostly to the ordinary lot of individuals? But even they deep down have become greedier and more egoist. The mighty BHG are capable of feeding all the greedy individuals. This strategy has fortified the inner demons in almost every individual without them even knowing it; it is more insidious than ever before. BHG have lost the capability of correcting by precepts or example.”
“I don’t understand you, dear Earth!” Grete protested.
“You see Grete, take the example of you own country. In the previous times your people were self-sustaining and grew their own food. Now less than three per cent of your people cultivate food. Instead they buy fine foods and everything else produced by others elsewhere, from near and often far-away places. To purchase these luxuries, you have to work for someone else to earn money. Having a job and earning money has become the primary dynamics of BHG life. Like your country fellows, the entire BHG mass trembles with fear when a rumour forecasts a little drop of production. The panicked BHG viciously attack and suck what little blood my sick body is left with. I squirm with excruciating pain. Monstrous machines speed up destroying oxygenating forests. Why do you think I cough so much? My lungs have weakened, enabling BHG to devour my blood more easily. Soulless BHG industrial and commercial enterprises of all sizes and varieties that do not have any moral or ecological qualms have taken over all activities from individuals. You see, by offering cheap food and tempting goods they have transformed individuals into voracious consumers. Their vices and I-ness exploded without them even knowing it. Their inner demons have taken another form. They feel comfortable and guiltless. All this at my cost. BHG enterprises are stealing and devouring precious gifts free from my reserves. Do you think they care about the consequences? Land is eroded, biodiversity lost, entire ecosystems destroyed, air, water and soil are polluted, water becomes scarce, and non-recyclable toxic and dangerous waste is produced, thereby injuring all my beautiful living things. I hope you understand the way I see things.”
It took an excruciating painful effort for Earth to explain all this to Grete. She could not avoid becoming breathless and feeling weak. She could not bear to see Grete crying. Before dosing off with fatigue she managed to whisper: “The sad thing is that BHG are proliferating, becoming more and more voracious, and I am afraid soon I’ll run out of gifts.”
Grete stood up and looked like Edvard Munch’s painting The Scream of Nature – a silent scream!“Thank you, Earth. Now I know that BHG have not changed at all. Their appetite is more insatiable than ever before. Even the lushest fields and greatest treasures will not satisfy these greedy monsters. You have been so generous with gifts that BHG does not tire of taking.”
Earth picked up a little courage to say, “Bounteous nature, politics and the society of BHG form a triangle. Having learnt everything from nature, BHG has shamelessly brutalized it. They cause many other ailments besides my fever. I do not want to upset you more. You look tired listening to my complaints. Go and rest a little, dear Grete. I need you.”
“So human demons have not been mollified”, Grete hissed between her tight lips. Pinker did not see how BHG have mutated – stealing even more from the ecosystem, burning it, starving it, decimating it, and stupidly polluting it. Their genetic loop of I-ness – ego, greed, arrogance – continues to dominate everything with brutal force disguised as liberalism, capitalism, socialism, communism, and dictatorship. All hanker for power in order to control all humans and devastate the ecosystem. I must find an antidote to kill the inner demons of human nature.” Seeing Earth doze off again, Grete departed.