Forests are burning. Minds are burning with fear and worry. Do we fly or do we stay at home?

Message from a reader of my blog on the Fires in Australia and my teaching schedule in Australia.

Hi Christopher,

This is a heart-breaking post. My heart goes out to the people and wildlife who are suffering in Australia. On the news today there were pictures of the worst flooding for fifty years in Venice and also the flooding in the north of England. We do indeed have to wake up to the new reality and it is up to each one of us to engage in ‘wise action’ in terms of our daily life and habits and I cannot see the justification in flying to the other side of the world to hold a retreat. That now seems to me a luxury the world cannot afford.

Dear Reader,

Thank you for your message.

I do not hold to the view that those who engage in service to others in various parts of the world should stop such service.

Aeroplanes and helicopters provide an important service to tackling the fires in a variety of ways.

Some of us tackle the fires of the mind.

Servants of people, animals and the environment cannot turn our back on others and cut ourselves off.

It is not a luxury the world can afford.



  • Hello again Christopher………..thank you very much for replying to my comment. I do agree with you that we need to continue to be of service to others and spread the dharma message. We also need to be tackling the fires of the mind. I do however wonder why it is necessary to travel such great distances to do so, when the cost of the carbon foot print is so great and there is so much need closer to home? Also it is presumably possible to spread the dharma message in ones immediate environment and that could include holding retreats? Businesses are using high quality affordable video conferencing solutions such as zoom and whilst I understand that it’s not the same as being in the presence of a teacher, again I feel we can no longer afford the luxury of having things as they have always been. In the interests of our children and grandchildren we simply have to adapt. We can all find our own personal reasons for flying but we cannot continue to engage in ‘business as usual’ if we are to be serious about tackling the climate crisis. It would appear we have to agree to disagree on this issue!


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