Thursday, December 07, 2006

Behold the Ant


Here’s something to really think about. People are big. Ants are little. But ants represent more biomass on earth than humans. I discovered this in Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, by McDonough & Braungart.

And yet…

Ants continue to work seamlessly within nature, while we… well, we know what we’re doing. (Anyone in need of a reminder will want to check out Living Downstream).

Anyway, I like what McDonough & Braungart say, based on the ant, the worm, the deer, the tree, and so on…

“If nature is our model, what does it mean for human industries to be involved in maintaining and enriching this vibrant tapestry? First, it means that in the course of our individual activities, we work toward a rich connection with place…

Industries that respect diversity engage with local material and energy flows, and with local social, cultural, and economic forces, instead of viewing themselves as autonomous entities, unconnected to the culture or landscape around them.”


My kids and I are not engaged in any big industry. No products for sale. Still, we create. We impact. So, on Tuesday we became ants. Ants who made Nativity scenes. You can read more about this on my other blog, Green Inventions Central.

Deer Photo Gail Nadeau. Used with permission.

11 Comments:

Blogger Andrea said...

I put the "Living Downstream" book on hold at the library. I'm a little scared to read it. (living where we live)
I'll let you know what I think. :)

9:32 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

Heck, ants represent more biomass in our kitchen than humans at each change of season. And I'm all for the environment, and all (I love it - I recycle, i've stopped using disposable cleaning products, i camp), but when an ant is in my sugar, it's gotta die.

11:18 AM  
Blogger Christianne said...

Not sure if this comment will go in the direction you meant the discussion to go (my head's a little fuzzy from a full day of work), but . . . I don't think we can ever reach the kind of seamless unity with our fellow men like the ant and deer have with their fellow, um, well, ant and deer because of the "reason factor." Because we have rational, thinking, independent minds (unlike the animals), we have opinions about how stuff should be in the world. And, unfortunately, so do all the other humans walking around out there. So our opinions bump into their opinions and, eventually, size does win.

PS: The word verification for this post is "nahhh" which I find incredibly funny in my silly state right now. :)

7:00 PM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Andrea... it's an amazing book... yes, I'll look forward to hearing what you think.

Heather... Ha!

Christianne... yes, that's a different thought than here, which is about how ants leave no environmental impact except that which gives back to their surroundings. Still, I thought your musings were interesting! I will never say, "Nah," to whatever you want to offer here. :)

7:09 PM  
Blogger Ted Gossard said...

L.L.,

Wow. What a wonderful world we live in. Just the ants alone should bring a sense of wonder.

How can we live as though these things neither exist or matter?!?

Thanks! And nice work with your children.

7:51 PM  
Blogger Craver VII said...

This weekend we rented Ant Bully. They talked about that whole big and little thing. They talked about each ant being an important contributor for the needs of the many. I liked the lessons they tried to convey.

Didn't Moody Science Videos do something with ants?

11:31 PM  
Blogger Craver VII said...

This weekend we rented Ant Bully. They talked about that whole big and little thing. They talked about each ant being an important contributor for the needs of the many. I liked the lessons they tried to convey.

Didn't Moody Science Videos do something with ants?

11:35 PM  
Blogger Craver VII said...

This weekend we rented Ant Bully. They talked about that whole big and little thing. They talked about each ant being an important contributor for the needs of the many. I liked the lessons they tried to convey.

Didn't Moody Science Videos do something with ants?

11:37 PM  
Blogger Martin Stickland said...

Do you know that ants can talk, they have feelings, and they eat Pizza and drive cars? I went to see the movie ANTS a few years ago with my boys and apparently it is based on a true story, can you believe that!

No? Thought you wouldn’t!

A good read L.L, it got me thinking!

2:34 AM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Ted...It is amazing, really, that anyone can live as if these things don't exist or matter. I do wonder what that's all about.

Craver...
Craver...
Craver... Yes, ants are pretty cool. And to think that they have no adverse impact on the earth (just on a few aphids here and there who don't like being milked!)

Martin... as always, you make me laugh! Yes, I thought the fact that ants have more biomass than we do but have only good impact on the earth was surely something to think about!

1:18 PM  
Blogger Ted Gossard said...

L.L.,
Well, maybe I was getting carried away. It is all too easy to completely miss the wonders of God, as we live in our small, little worlds.

1:14 AM  

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