Noticing Earth’s troubles? Why it’s meaningful to acknowledge them, send love, and surround them with light

We’re daily aware of so many troubles on the Earth that we can’t heal—at least, not yet. Maybe there’s smog or drought where you live, flooding or species extinction.  I drive to do an errand and notice the air is heating up, the smog building.  How is it for the birds and trees in hot, smoggy weather like this, I wonder, or the kids in my city who have asthma?  Yes, I’m driving an electric car but still—it’s a car, made of plastics and metals whose production requires energy and emits pollution.  Cars around me spew exhaust.  I close my windows.


I’d give a lot to heal this all, right now, here in my city and in other cities, too.  I yearn to repair climate change and eliminate air pollution.  I’m not able to do that.  What I can do, though, and you can, too, is surround the problems with light.  So often we think our choices are either activism or denial, but there’s a precious third way: acknowledge the problem, send love, and surround it with light.  Acknowledge, love, light.  It’s a path to healing your broken heart and the broken world.


As a scholar of history and religion, I can assure you this is an age-old approach.  It’s often been called prayer or meditation.  In recent decades we’ve given it other names, too, and they’re all good.  This is what humans do when we see a problem bigger than ourselves yet choose not to turn away in denial.  You can call on a higher power or Divinity to help you, or do the process on your own.  What matters is to step outside of the duality of denial or activism and bring in the sacred third way.  In this third way, you are a loving presence to the problem, not a cold shoulder.  Whether you’re pained by climate change, air or water pollution, our eroding soils, habitat loss, the Superfund site in your town, asthma and cancer rates due to environmental toxicity, or something else, please don’t turn away.  You’re not responsible to fix these big problems on your own, but as a human being alive right now, you are responsible to acknowledge them, send love to all involved, and surround them in light.  That may even be why we’re here.


When you do this, make sure to include as many life forms as you can as recipients of love: the people, plants, animals, and ecosystems that are suffering, but also those who are causing the suffering and may not be aware of the damage they are creating or know how to stop.  Blame doesn’t help us a lot right now.  We need to lovingly work together to solve the Earth’s problems.  Collaboration is the way forward, and this process is part of it.


Acknowledge a problem, send love to all involved, and surround it with light.  Does it work?  Yes.  Science journalist Lynn McTaggart has partnered with scientists around the world to run numerous experiments evaluating whether prayer or attention are effective.  The results are good—even amazing (see her book, The Intention Experiment).  Research institutes such as IONS and HeartMath are doing the same types of studies, as are Ivy League universities.  We’re learning more and more that whether you call it prayer, visualization, intention, sending love, or something else, a real energetic transfer occurs, and it’s for the good.  Every human culture since the beginning of recorded time has honored the force of love and the power of light.  With 21st century scientific tools, we’re coming to understand more about why.


There’s a benefit to you, too.  The strain of being aware of the world’s environmental and justice problems wears on us all.  No previous human generation has ever had to face planet-wide environmental degradation or the possibility of the extinction of our species in the foreseeable future.  It’s psychologically and spiritually unhealthy to feel either helpless or wholly responsible.  When you choose to acknowledge our problems, send love to all involved, and surround them in light, you not only make a real energetic contribution toward the world’s healing, but you empower yourself.  Activism is necessary but you can’t be an activist every moment of your life.  In all the in-between times, please acknowledge the problems we’re facing now on the Earth, send love to all involved, and surround it all with light.  Healing and renewal await us and you can help pave the way.


On July 19 I’ll be offering a free webinar on how to hold intentions for the Mutual Flourishing transition.  Each of us can contribute by holding in mind and heart a vision of the healing outcomes we desire for the world.  We’ll explore this together on July 19.


For now,  I want to tell you about The Shift Network’s free online event, The Summer of Peace, taking place June 13 – September 21.

When you join for free, you’ll get access to 65+ of the world’s top peacebuilders, social change agents, Indigenous elders, political leaders, scientists and spiritual mentors – including people like Deepak Chopra, Ervin Laszlo, Grandmother Agnes Pilgrim, Karen Armstrong, Congressman Tim Ryan and others – who will help you bring inner, interpersonal and collective peace efforts to the next level! We’ll also have special messages from The Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Jane Goodall and H.H. Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji.

You can sign up for FREE here:

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This event will assist us in becoming agents of peace who can co-create a life and a world where peace – instead of conflict – is the new baseline.

  • The Global Compassion Summit (July 7 – 9)
  • The Heart of Democracy Summit (August 18 – 20)
  • The Subtle Activism Summit (September 8 – 10)
  • 11 Days of Global Unity Summit (September 11 – 21)


To learn more and be a part of this incredible online event, click here:



To flourishing for all life,


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