What does it mean to be ‘Eco-Friendly’?
Being ‘Eco-Friendly’ and ‘Eco-Conscious’ are such trendy things to do these days – it seems like every other person is getting on the ‘Zero Waste’ bandwagon and hype. Or at least we seem to hear these words flung around so often now that they seem to have become slightly ambiguous or may have lost a bit of significance and meaning. Because I don’t think just swapping out your take away coffee cups for keep cups and using bamboo cutlery is the complete story really. I mean, those are some great simple moves you can do to get started, (and I know that’s not all the ‘Zero Waste’ movement is about either, there’s a lot more to it) but there’s more to this story than just reducing waste don’t you think? I know all of this comes from a place of love and compassion and wanting to do good for the environment, but living a life with less unnecessary plastic waste is only one way of incorporating a more Eco Conscious mind set into your reality.
I found this concept of ‘deep ecology’ a particularly interesting point of discussion and I feel can be a good starting point for further contemplation about Eco-Consciousness. Initially introduced in environmental literature in the 70s by Norwegian philosopher and mountaineer Arne Naess in an era after the 60s where environmentalism was emerging out of grassroots political movements. Drengson in his article Some Thought on the Deep Ecology Movement described it as having an ethic of ‘respecting nature and the inherent worth of other beings’ and involves ‘ redesigning our whole systems based on values and methods that truly preserve the ecological and cultural diversity of natural systems.’
Link to article – Some Thought on the Deep Ecology Movement by Alan Drengson
Some pretty thought provoking stuff regarding to eco-conscious living, don’t you think?
But I guess what this means for me is living with an awareness of this deep innate connection that we have with the land – to the natural environment around – to the birds, the trees, the animals, the rocks, the mountains, the fire, the rain – to all other beings and the world around, including ourselves. Because we are simultaneously at one with everything that is arising moment to moment, so we must listen to it, respect it and take care of it, otherwise it dies – we die.
Actually, we are not separated from these things – we are but one part of the same interconnected whole. We are a complete Eco-System connected together and unto ourselves. Interdependent with each other and part of the larger whole. You. And me. And everything. On a cosmic scale. ..Boom. This is literally it. ..and you can feel it right down to the chaos of the complex buzzing interconnected world of your own body’s system. The living bugs and bacteria and cells and micro-organisms and even atoms all interacting and exchanging on a micro-cellular level in, on and around your body and in the environment. You – yourself – we, have a micro biome and are completely integrated with it and dependant on it for survival, as it is to you. We are all part of the infinite micro-cosmic biome.
So for me, being Eco Conscious not only means being conscious of your plastic consumption and your waste and your ecological footprint…but in the same way this is connected to how you treat yourself and your own body as well, what foods you eat, what toxins you allow to come into your life, and the habits behaviours and beliefs we choose to create in our lives. Are you truly living consciously in harmony with your own innate micro-biome? Your own personal landscape? – physically, mentally, emotionally – and even spiritually? And with the landscape around you? The people you interact with on a daily basis? the other animals you share the land with? And the land itself?
It’s all connected. And once we start to truly open up our awareness and consciousness about how we are truly impacting our ecology around us including ourselves – you begin to see that we start making more healthy choices for our-selves, our bodies and the environment. You might start eating healthier, going to the farmers market, reducing your plastic footprint, considering toxins in your life, moving around stagnant energies, learning, challenging yourself, expressing yourself authentically, being creative, being in nature and getting outdoors, going on adventures and reaching out into the unknown. You might find yourself meeting new people, discovering new places, having conversations with the neighbours cat, listening to the birds, planting trees, considering your impact on others, practising self-care, tidying, detoxing and cleansing, and healing in all kinds of different ways.
There are a few key indicators that resonate with me in terms of how I define Eco-Conscious living for myself, and I’ve outlined some of these things in the Eco-Friendly QUIZ, but ultimately it’s you who decides what living an Eco-Friendly lifestyle looks like for you.
…Let us know what you think, leave any comments below, feel free to share your Eco-Conscious story and journey with us and spread the word about this awesome and inspiring Eco-Friendly movement!
Article Written by Lillian Adele