There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground
by Derrick Jensen
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.
There are hundreds of ways to pray. You can walk through a forest. You can sit by a pond. You can watch the air turn into clouds and then slowly dissipate. You can lie on your back and look at the stars.
Those are crucial acts of prayer and sanity.
But with the world being killed, the prayers we really need today are actions.
We need people to not merely walk through the forest, but to defend it from being cut. And we need people to not merely look at the pond, but to make sure that those who live in the pond can survive this culture.
A prayer without actions to work toward protecting whomever you love is not a prayer. It’s not even a wish, but it’s almost a blasphemy.
I often said that I don’t hope that salmon survive, but I’ll do whatever it takes to make sure that salmon survive.
An Anishinaabe woman wrote to me and said: “I hear what you’re saying, and it is an obscenity to hope that salmon survive, or pray that salmon survive, when you’re not doing anything in the real world to help them survive. But after you have taken out the dam, you have to pray that the river accepts your offering of the dam removal, and does its own work then.”
I completely agree.
So we have to do everything that we can, and then we have to pray that the earth accepts our offering and accepts our prayer and that the salmon come hom