Hope for a Dying Planet

Up, up and away! Remember this? Ever hear it? It’s a common phrase of Superman, my childhood hero. Actually, in all honesty…he’s still my hero…he’s always been. From my earliest memories Superman was always there. A shining hero. A beacon of light. A symbol of power and strength. Colorful, bold, purposeful, dynamic. Everything I looked for in a hero. Still today at 55, my home is filled with Superman memorabilia…action figures, comic books, even a replica of his parents sending him off to Earth as an infant. Do you know the story?
Superman was from the planet Krypton. His father was a scientist who was predicting the destruction of their world and attempting with his knowledge to do what he could to save as many as possible. When imminent destruction was clear, his last resort was to send his son to the planet Earth, whose yellow sun would provide superhuman powers that would allow him to be a savior for another planet. Sound familiar now? A dying planet? Need for rescue from destruction? A very timely story for today, yet one that’s been around for decades…and if you study ancient civilizations, one that’s really been around for centuries.
Our world is suffering. Yes, on a physical level with climate change and man-made processes that destroy the natural ecosystem around us. But it is also suffering on other levels…financial, political, social, spiritual. We all know some way this affects us and those to whom we are connected. And some days it seems overwhelming, as if the whole planet will self destruct. And we wonder…is there hope?
Superman represents that hope for me. A life given for the salvation of the world. A Christ figure. A Buddha figure. A shaman figure. These all resonate with me. And even if you don’t have belief in a greater Spirit, if you believe in the salvation of our planet, you may very well have something that drives your hope to engage in its salvation. This is a crucial time in all of our lives, and one that is crucial for the generations to come to sustain our world. I think this is a time that calls all of us…you…me…every one of us to become a hero. To find what will give us hope and the power to save our dying planet. We don’t need to wear a powerful costume and symbol as much as find within us that which will help us and those around us move forward in hope.
There are many heroes in the world of fiction and fantasy. Some recent examples touch even more to our real lives. The X-men have special abilities, unique for each person, that together make a difference in offering hope to the world. The television series Heroes offered a similar take in a different way…each person having uniques abilities that went beyond themselves and had the capability of making a difference for others. And then there’s someone like Toy Story’s Buzz Lightyear…who believed the abilities he was “told” he had and accomplished great things in the life of a child. Isn’t this relative to all of us?
I am a hero with the potential to be hope for a dying planet. I can only be that hope because I believe there are many others of us out there with their own unique abilities that can make a difference in our world. I’m pledging my role and now I’m asking you to pledge yours. Let’s form our own legion of superheroes and become the hope for a dying planet!


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