Same as it ever was?

When I arrived on this planet, it had been two months and a day since the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima. I remember going to bed 10 years later, after listening to grownup talk, hearing the sound of distant planes. I wondered if the Russians might be coming to bomb us. This was a recurring theme. I never told anyone.

Years later, when Buckminster Fuller was in his 80s, I was fortunate enough to hear him speak. One observation I remember Mr. Fuller relating was, and I paraphrase, “I have been amazed and dismayed that man takes the most advanced technology and applies it to means of destruction.” And why is that? I remember wondering to myself. Fuller than added, “Man seems to make the leap of consciousness to a new level allowing for creative solutions when depletion of a vital resource is imminent.”

Buckminster spoke at a pace and with an urgency that demanded close attention. While singing the praises of the sun, the miracle of its radiance and virtual inexhaustibility as an energy source, Fuller also stated, almost as a footnote, that the nearest a nuclear reactor should be to the Earth is the one in the sky called our sun, as he pointed upward.

Fuller’s observations have been prophetic. We now hear talk of dramatically increasing the number of nuclear-power plants over the next two decades. It is known among the experts, if not the average SUV owner, that our oil bucket has a hole in it. The military machine will freeze up in short order when the wells run dry. So cutting-edge technology is being applied to our military gears to gather hegemony while we may.

Along with the reactivation of “nuclear” as a source of power, it follows that uranium can be enriched conveniently for a new generation of tactical weapons, just to have on hand as an option.

In the meantime (and these are mean times), it behooves us all to begin to look within and ask ourselves the question, “Are we capable of becoming humane stewards of this miraculous blue dewdrop of a planet Earth?”

Buckminster Fuller made one analogy near his conclusion: Gravity is like love—an invisible and mysteriously attractive force.

I would suggest that behind the "gravity" of our current situation is love. Anything is possible. The news could be good: We might be on the verge of a leap of consciousness. Perhaps we will realize that there is life beyond oil. Cutting-edge technology can be applied to the means of renewal and healing of the planet. It may occur to us that the lucky old sun just rollin’ around heaven all day is indeed awesome. After all, nothing isn’t sacred under the sun.