Endgame Strategies

Pachamama

Ecuador provides the world with a bold new legal framework for protecting the biosphere.
Pachamama Rights for nature

Last September Ecuador approved a constitutional amendment that protects the rights of Pachamama, Mother Earth. By affirming the rights of nature, “where life is reproduced and exists,” Ecuador is offering the world a way out of one of the blindest of the many blind alleys Western thinking has created.

As the first nation to officially recognize rights for anything other than humans, Ecuador is setting a monumental precedent in the struggle to protect the world’s ecosystems. The constitution compels the state to protect and restore Pachamama and endows every citizen with the right to demand that she be honored.

In passing this amendment, Ecuador is calling on the developed world to abandon its misguided assumption that it deserves a free pass from Pachamama (Gaia, Mother Nature or the biosphere if you prefer). Ecuador has also reminded us of this fundamental truth: the earth came before us and will very likely outlast us.

This tiny nation has achieved something that no Western nation has. It has shown us, in cogent terms fully compatible with Western legal platforms, how to reorganize our political institutions in a way that just may give civilization a fighting chance.

We’ve yet to see whether words are able to secure the Amazon from oil drills or the Galapagos from sightseers. The average lifespan of an Ecuadorian constitution is about a decade. But any setbacks will be temporary. If this particular legal maneuver doesn’t take root, another will be attempted. In the end, nature’s rights will be legally and permanently affirmed. The idea will take hold because it is true and it is necessary.

With time it will begin to sink in to our collective Western superego that our inherent superiority is a myth. This legal breath of fresh air has blown in from a place with few cities – a place that is home to both indigenous and mestizo peoples. A place that is bold enough to step outside the Western-made order and define its own priorities. Now that we’ve almost run out of world to wreck, it’s time to follow Ecuador’s lead.

In the 19th century, a Westerner visiting the Galapagos Islands unlocked the secrets of evolution and shattered humanity’s homocentric worldview (although many still cling to it). Charles Darwin revealed that the iron rule of natural selection is “adapt or die.” Now, nearly two centuries later, Ecuador has introduced a way for us to evolve: a viable, practical means by which to honor the rights of the earth. Let’s follow the people of Ecuador into this new evolution. Let’s learn from Pachamama.

31 comments on the article “Pachamama”

Displaying 1 - 10 of 31

Page 1 of 4

Anonymous

mother nature should file as a corporation. she would get more protection. http://www.cafepress.com/obamaclown

Anonymous

mother nature should file as a corporation. she would get more protection. http://www.cafepress.com/obamaclown

A Human being

wondeful initiative but one wonders how it will fare out in practicalities? here is another way forward for humanity www.thevenusproject.com

A Human being

wondeful initiative but one wonders how it will fare out in practicalities? here is another way forward for humanity www.thevenusproject.com

Anonymous

"As the first nation to officially recognize rights for anything other than humans" Certain countries have recognized animal rights. A little off the point but it needed to be said...

Anonymous

"As the first nation to officially recognize rights for anything other than humans" Certain countries have recognized animal rights. A little off the point but it needed to be said...

Zuri

I am proud my country has decided to protect the Paccha Mama (Mother Earth) I think it is a good example that other countries should follow. BUT we have to make sure and be aware that words become true actions...

Zuri

I am proud my country has decided to protect the Paccha Mama (Mother Earth) I think it is a good example that other countries should follow. BUT we have to make sure and be aware that words become true actions...

Dave Dave

Zuri, I am quite interested in hearing more about this new constitution and about Ecuadorian concerns that these words may not become "true actions." Could you email me any leads at heydavecheckthisout [at] gmail.com?

Dave Dave

Zuri, I am quite interested in hearing more about this new constitution and about Ecuadorian concerns that these words may not become "true actions." Could you email me any leads at heydavecheckthisout [at] gmail.com?

Pages

Add a new comment

Comments are closed.