The Shadow

The Shadow

2014 – oil on canvas, 160×200 cm / 63×79 in

“We are shaped by our thoughts, we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves”. Buddha

The world around us can be on fire when we leave the stage of our life, but we follow our path into the light of our Savior. The further we progress, the longer our shadow becomes, composed of our ecological footprint, of our empathy and compassion, and our creations. It is up to us to determine if our shadow will be light or dark. Once the shadow fades, there remains the empty Cloak that once contained our soul and conscience.

Our world is burning and we continue sleepwalking into our demise. In a world where over 50 % of people live in large cities, where kids know plants only as flowerpots and animals only as pets, we have totally lost contact with nature. Our disregard for food is a particularly sorry chapter in this area. As in many other areas, industrialization of food production has led to a sharp decline in prices and to a loss of perception of its real value.

Throughout its production and life cycle, food, like any other product, generates Co2 and uses huge amounts of water (80 % of drinking water in the US). 1.3 billion tons, about one third of the food produced for human consumption, goes to waste. An amount, which would feed the one billion people suffering from hunger and malnutrition. No wonder that Pope Francis pleaded with all of us in his “Urbi et Orbis” address at Easter 2014 “To fight the Hunger caused by our Waste”.

The waste of food, as well as the energy, soil and water resources used for its production, is an ethic scandal of global proportions. Each of us has to do his part to change this. You can use the internet to find out how. Sites like The Global Footprint Network allow everybody to calculate the ecological footprint of his lifestyle; Save Food gives us solutions to reduce our waste, and Banco Alimentare and other Food banks show us where to volunteer in the collection and distribution of surplus food.

Sites like Global Forest Watch, Google Earth Outreach, or the World Resources Institute, give us the information of the digital era that can replace, in part, our loss of direct contact with Mother Earth. Only our imagination and our creativity are the limits to solve our burning problems. As part of the Universal Conscience, they allow us to perceive the ultimate truth of life. For William Blake “Imagination is the real and eternal world of which this vegetable universe is but a faint Shadow”.

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