What luck do you have to have, to be born in the only planet known to sustain life, and to be the most intelligent species living in it?
What can humans not do on Earth if they can go to space?
However, I often feel and say this: We are the most powerful of the least important species. I often wonder what the planet would have looked like in our absence. Well, in many ways, a lot better.
Now don't get me wrong, I haven't entirely given up on our race but there are instances which make me think if our hearts even beat anymore. For instance, the recent case of a pregnant elephant finding and eating pineapples filled with explosives that eventually killed her and the unborn child.
The death of a pregnant wild elephant, suspected to have been fatally injured after eating fruit stuffed with firecrackers that exploded in her mouth, has stirred public outrage in India https://t.co/l4mwpjytps— CNN International (@cnni) June 4, 2020
This happened just days before World Environment Day, and The Hindu released a write-up on the same, congratulating humans for their incredible courage. They wrote:
We are fearless. We crawl up, with our puffed-up chests, straight into the elephant's territory. Armed with merely a high-powered rifle, we sneak up on the majestic beast. Then, with a gentle squeeze of the trigger, we end the elephant's reign.
Adding that when the weapons don't work, we use food laced with firecrackers.
Brave, isn't it?
Yesterday, A pregnant starving Elephant get into a Village in Kerala India in search of food. She was just standing in a river and looking on trees while some persons from Kerala put a Pineapple infront of her. Mama Elephant believed them. pic.twitter.com/GezjsgFLBy— Feza. (Lost old account) (@FezFutboll) June 4, 2020
And this isn't it. From whales, to birds. From coral reefs to forests, we have entered every space - meant for us or not - and we have destroyed it.
The whales, the biggest creatures on the planet are chased down on motorised boats and killed with motorised harpoons. Evergreen forests flattened with bulldozers. Graceful birds rendered flightless with mechanical crossbows.
Nature rose to its high during lockdown period. In kolkata Dolphins were seen in The Ganges. Nature is busy reorganising itself and then meet this man named Rafik Saihk somewhere between Bhardwaj and Kolkata tearing apart the Dolphin through its beak. Always destruction in mind. pic.twitter.com/YQPl1jGQ0p— DURGESH KUMAR (@DURGESH54049360) May 11, 2020
However, there is one thing that we often forget. Or are not able to see because power usually ends up blinding people - a trait only found in humans.
We forget that Earth was here before we came and it will be, after we are gone. No matter how many of us we are, nature will always be more powerful.
And it will find clever ways to prove that. The species boasting its guns at every chance it gets, showing off nuclear weapons, sitting atop its bulldozers - has been brought to its knees by a virus.
The tiny virus has brought us mighty beings to our knees. We have been forced to retreat and stay within the confines of our homes. There is fear in the air, a word that cannot be found in our dictionaries. It has slowed us down.
The species which is planning to visit Mars, has been rendered powerless by an invisible organism. Proving, that nature doesn't need weapons to be lethal.
We will find a vaccine for this virus, though, we are smart. And what a day it will be.
People will be able to meet their loved ones, go out, travel.
Basically, things will go back to 'normal'.
And THAT is bothersome.
But we will be back. We will return with more audacity than ever before. We will tear down the environment without an iota of guilt or fear.
We do not know any definition of 'normal' that doesn't include destruction for the animals, of the environment.
Our 'normal' pierces through mountains to make roads, stops the flow of rivers to make electricity, kills innocent beings for an ornament that we proudly show off to people who are important to us, or not.
Our 'normal' wants to wear the skin of animals, it wants their teeth, their organs - their everything except soul. Because we lost ours somewhere, long ago.
So as I hope we do find a vaccine, I also wish that the suffering we have seen in this pandemic gives us some perspective.
It's unlikely, though. I know it. I have been a human for long enough.
You can read The Hindu's piece, here: