The church of Geo-Gaia is a new faith compatible with other religions. It reconciles spiritual belief to acceptance of modern science, and will teach us how to correct the planet's environmental crises. The Goddess's sacred BIOS is something that "even non-believers can believe in." We must respect the Goddess if our species and our habitat are going to survive.
Divine vision takes many forms
When I tossed a handful of flowers into my wife’s open grave, the Earth spoke to me.
The voice was female, but not familiar… more like a soft humming of insects.
At first I feared I might faint. I'd tumble after the flowers into the vault below, onto the gleaming casket of Cheryl, my wife and lover of 50 years.
Then came clarity and with it, serenity. The scent of grass, of freshly turned soil and dew-moist flowers seemed welcoming.
The Earth Mother said to me, “When your time comes—if it does—I will receive you gently to my bosom. You may return into the cycle of birth and blossoming, death and evolution that has enriched the planet since life began.
"I shall undertake to preserve your vital essence—if you will preserve mine.”
Was our Earth at risk?
With the onset of our Third Millennium have come hints of planetary doom. Year 2000 fears, ancient Mayan and Biblical curses, and now the threat of global climate change make all of us watchful. When I purchased our family grave site, I chose burial over cremation in order to sequester our carbon atoms. Cheryl, in her hospital bed after a yearlong bout with cancer, approved of the choice. With our climate poisoned by excess carbon from the burning of fossil fuels and of living forests, the two of us did not wish our stardust-essence to add to the heat-trapping pollution. Nor did we desire a roaring funeral pyre of fossil gases to further warm the oceans and melt the poles.
The funeral ceremony had been held the previous afternoon. The only mourner with me at the burial was Sandra, a stately married friend of ours and, in her way, an angel of mercy. As we departed the cemetery, she asked what I would do with my life.
In my grief and uncertainty, I was in no hurry to decide. But the seed had been planted.
That winter morning was unseasonably warm and pleasant. Everyone enjoys such days, but I had come to see them as troubling. It feels quite comfortable. Yet true horror can be something out of place, as when the roses in the garden sing to you. Such warmth in January is an anomaly, and California was in the midst of the severest drought on record.
Earth in the Balance
What impact would this unseasonal weather have on nature and agriculture, with plants blossoming too early for the insects to pollinate them? What effect would it have far inland, where unprecedented freezes and ice storms were ravaging the continent?
To scientists and thinkers, these events can threaten even worse changes to come. But to others who believe in ancient prophecies and anticipate global destruction, they may be welcomed as signs of an apocalypse and a Second Coming, or as proofs of God’s wrath against sinners and non-believers, the Unrighteous.
As a science student and futurist, I had been mindful for half a century of this threat, first called the Greenhouse Effect, then Global Warming, then Climate Change. As the predictions were borne out, scientists overwhelmingly agreed on the danger, its severity, and the need for counter-measures.
Yet few paid attention. Instead, immensely wealthy heirs and corporate executives of the fossil fuel industry had promoted false science and propaganda to confuse the public and stall any governmental action, so that many Americans lived, and still live, in ignorance or a willful, contrarian stupor.
Religion Invades Politics
This reactionary fervor extended to other areas of science and social progress as well. To any advance, whether it was birth control, water treatment, Medicare or Social Security, there seemed to emerge a rabid counter-movement incorporating anti-social urges, fundamentalist religion, willful ignorance and jealous spite. In particular, these neurotic, untrue believers and disbelievers seem driven to confuse the arguments, shift the subject under discussion, and say outrageous things to annoy those honestly seeking a solution or a consensus. In modern computer-speak, they are trolls.
Only in the past year had I come to understand the origin of these reactionary ideas and organizations, which are formed largely through right-wing think tanks such as the Heritage Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute, the Cato Institute and Crossroads GPS, which created the TEA Party.
In my youth, these arguments came from the John Birch Society, a crypto-anarchist group founded and funded by a man named Koch, an oil tycoon. These newer institutions are principally supported by Charles and David Koch, oil heirs. These super-rich entrepreneurs and philanthropists are among the biggest winners, thriving and growing in power at the top of our fossil fuel-burning economy. Together they share the largest fortune in the world.
If you are winning the game, why change the rules? Most any democratic change or advance, whether in knowledge or public policy, threatens these plutocrats. They only seek to change the rules in their favor. Therefore they oppose genuine progress that could undermine their profits and power. Instead, they work to subjugate, divide and confuse citizens with the help of shills, tools and useful idiots who can be brainwashed to crusade against their own best interests, and those of the human species and all life.
Tentacles of the Koch-topus
To this end, they have created a mythology blended of fear, superstition, denial, infantile envy, delusions of power and persecution, and pathological projection. This neo-conservative belief system amounts to a mental illness, an anti-social disease that has been carefully cultivated and inculcated into the American psyche by some of the best-trained and cleverest deceivers that money can buy. And some useful idiots.
One example of this thought-virus is the myth of the rugged individual. In fact, no human is an individual, and no man or woman is an island. We are an inter-dependent species living in communities and relying on cooperation and mutual support. People who are left alone too long go insane. Solitary is punishment, not a reward.
Another fallacy is survivalism. In nature, no individual survives forever, except possibly some giant fungus living deep in the ground. Survival and immortality have been possible only through love and reproduction with the addition of a tribe, clan or community. To raise healthy offspring, As Hillary Clinton quoted, it takes a village.
A further mental perversion is the so-called Objectivist philosophy of the Russian aristocrat Ayn Rand. This ethic glorifies individual greed and lust at the expense of all other beings, and is close to the megalomania of the French aristocrat, Marquis de Sade. Yet it has seduced many American financial leaders
Supply-side economics is a related delusion, a trickle-down construct formed in opposition to traditional and proven economic theory. In spite of its universal failure over the past half-century in countries conquered or overthrown by the United States, it still fuels the powerful engine of neo-conservative economic privatization and non-regulation. These doctrines favor the rich and have been elevated to the status of blind faith, or even a religion that worships an Invisible Hand that guides economic affairs. Its neo-conservative faithful, once called Neocons, are now referred to as Theocons because of their odd, unproven economic theology. By their "shock doctrine" of mind control, they can benefit from disaster.
Sick, fanatic sects of Christianity also loom large in reactionary thought, scheming for the destruction of the world by Armageddon, rapture or holocaust. In the meantime, some oppose family planning with terror tactics, or foment a broader war on women, including Taliban-style legal oppression and discrimination. Such modern know-nothings lead the charge in what Al Gore calls the Assault on Reason. These “Bible believers” are not really Christians, since they ignore the enlightened teachings of Jesus during his lifetime. Instead they obsess on Old Testament myths that are shared, but largely disregarded, by Jews and Muslims alike.
These self-deluding, solipsistic beliefs spread Bad Religion, which can, ironically, be seen as the fourth Pale Horseman of the Apocalypse in the feverish Book of Revelations. Religious extremism can, indeed, be more destructive than war, plague and famine combined. Christian preachers from the very start have warned of final judgment and destruction being imminent, but now, after two millennia of Christian progress, it appears that the fate of the Earth is at risk.
With zealots perverting Christianity to mere power-seeking or a downright Satanic creed, it seems time to re-examine our human need for religious faith. The quest for spiritual belief is as old as human consciousness. We want to know where we came from, discern our guiding principles and be in touch with our true origin. Does this clash with existing Christian, Jewish or Moslem belief?
No. The First Commandment to Moses states: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." That surely leaves room for a Goddess.
Revealed: A New Faith for Global Survival
To me, still under the influence of Earth Mother Geo-Gaia’s sublime epiphany, it seems clear:
A church, a shared religion, must reflect not just the oldest recorded myths or legends, but the reality that surrounds us. It should teach us, as custodians of the sole spark of life known in the universe, how to survive and flourish as a global entity. To do so it must include, not just a Humanist focus upon our own species, but a Vitalist concern for all life and the BIOS support system that we all depend on.
Rather than the Biblical myths of some ancient tribe or Marduk the Babylonian, our true Genesis is the unfolding treasure house of science, produced by our own God-given, slowly evolving intellect. Life’s true origin over the eons contains more wonders, more divine miracles than any Bible can invent. Our guiding principle is clear—not “survival of the fittest,” but mutual survival, the preservation and enjoyment of our natural habitat, this cradle of life that circles our sun. To adapt and prosper, we must also continue the divine process of evolution by means of artificial genetics, computers and AI, now that technology and human ethics have supplanted the natural evolution of tooth and claw.
Another boon of the Goddess is life extension and possible immortality. Medical advances support this, and initiates of Geo-Gaia can share the secrets. When humans are offered centuries more of life, they will begin to care about saving our planet.
The Goddess Geo-Gaia's laws are those of nature. She presides over the Biosphere, the fragile skin of our Earth that contains all life. Not an infinite flat-earth, but a spherical shell more delicate than a light bulb. This divine idea of BIOS shines alone and radiant in all our cosmic panorama of galaxies.
It was with this flow of divine inspiration that my vision began to take shape. That shape is a lovely face formed in human image, the female essence that nurtures and protects all mammals from birth, and all life since its planetary conception. Not a remote father who orders earthly affairs from the sky, but a devoted mother who holds us close to her bosom, shelters us, and suffers our kicks and insults. Thus far she has been patient and slow to anger.
Hell Hath No Fury Like a Goddess Scorned
Two years earlier, a radio report had deeply troubled me. It revealed a shocking scientific finding: Phytoplankton, the microscopic marine plant that provides a large share of Earth’s oxygen, is no longer present off the coast of Maine. Due to ocean warming, these tiny creatures could not survive in the North Atlantic where they had been plentiful.
My reaction was instant and visceral. I told myself, “Thank God I don’t have grandchildren!” I couldn’t bear the thought of my own offspring struggling to breathe, dragging themselves through an oxygen-depleted world. Can birds, with their high metabolic demands, fly in depleted air, or will they have to walk and build their nests in dirt? What mankind is doing to our planet is criminal! I spent weeks in denial and couldn't even mention this dreadful prospect to loved ones.
But the Maine report was old news. When I finally googled phytoplankton online, I had a surprise. More recently, these plankton have been found thriving under the Arctic ice.
This was near-miraculous, since scientists had not previously believed that the tiny creatures could live in the cold, dark polar depths.
The explanation, though not addressed in the press reports, seems obvious to me. The plankton communities, retreating from the rapidly warming temperate zones, have found shelter in the dwindling Arctic and Antarctic under the melting ice. Humanity has been given a reprieve to try and reverse the catastrophe of global warming and related climate dangers before the oxygen runs out..
This is only a temporary stay of execution, it seems to me, as the polar ice continues to melt and the forests to burn. And it may be a partial and diminishing relief since, especially in the southern hemisphere, the area of the poles is small compared to the wide band of temperate ocean. Do not be fooled by looking at a flat projection of our planet’s surface. Look at a globe.
Geo-Gaia’s message is clear. We are called upon to act vigorously and reverse our human impact of fossil fuel consumption and habitat destruction on our planet’s life support system, the BIOS .
Omens and Portents
As I write these words, the television warns of climate anomalies that can only be seen as divine warnings. In this weekend’s coastal El Nino downpour, funnel clouds were seen in the sky over Los Angeles, though they didn’t touch down as killer tornados. (And even this deluge will not end California’s record drought.)
In the East, most of Niagara Falls is frozen solid. In the Midwest, sleet storms are causing hundred-car pileups and forty-mile freezing traffic jams. And in the North, something new is being experienced: snowstorms come with thunderclaps, blizzards with lightning—all of this occurring in March, when winter should be ending.
The cause of these anomalies is not gay love, as some TV preacher might suggest, but our collective environmental sins. Humanity’s atonement will be to observe and obey nature’s inflexible laws, take reasoned and well-organized action, and where necessary, make personal sacrifice to appease the angry biosphere.
Thank you, Geo-Gaia, for such vivid messages! Our planet’s Basic Internal Operating System, the BIOS, has other corrective mechanisms in store. But these adjustments do not necessarily provide for the survival and comfort of the human species, much less preserve other organisms or bio-diversity.
And these protections may be overwhelmed by the imperative short-term greed and ingenuity of burgeoning humanity. To avoid mass extinction it will take profound changes, starting with a new and comprehensive religious faith.