Did you know the Unification movement has an online publication dedicated to all things nature?
This Earth Day, April 22, you can check out the latest stories from The Earth and I, which covers everything from light pollution and waste reduction, to coral reef restoration, and a new study using fish to discover more about neural behavior in the brain.
The bimonthly periodical, launched on Earth Day 2021, is just one of many ways True Parents’ deep love and respect for nature has materialized over the years, along with their efforts to educate the public. In 1981, they initiated the first Ocean Challenge program to cultivate faith and a heart of stewardship through experiencing God’s love in nature. Then, for more than two decades in the 1990s, they worked to sustain and preserve Brazil’s Pantanal region, often referred to as a “modern-day Eden.”
True Father brought global leaders to the Pantanal — the world’s largest tropical wetland and flooded grasslands — as he sponsored discussions on how to protect the region and the rest of the earth. He also set up fish farms and sought to establish aviary and insect preserves to protect unique species from extinction. “No creature lives for itself,” he notably said. “Instead, they live for each other. Nature teaches us this tremendous lesson … Religious people must lead the way in the effort to save nature.”
Today, True Mother continues this work of environmental protection through various avenues, including sponsorship of two annual science conferences every April. Through the Hyo Jeong International Foundation for the Unity of the Sciences (HJIFUS), the 28th International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences (ICUS) and the 3rd International Conference on Science and God (ICSG) held earlier this month offered scientists and industry leaders worldwide a robust platform to exchange and discuss ideas.
True Mother has also honored change-makers around the world, launching the Sunhak Peace Prize in 2015 which has awarded three environmental leaders to date. Former Kiribati President Anote Tong was recognized in 2015 for improving global awareness of climate change and seeking solution-oriented action from the international community, while biologist Modadugu Vijay Gupta of India was recognized for pioneering the “blue revolution” and making innovative contributions to fisheries and aquaculture development. In 2019, Dr. Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina, former Agriculture Minister of Nigeria, was recognized for his good governance in agricultural innovation and eradicating poverty.
“By the law of nature, small streams flow into greater ones,” wrote True Mother in her best-selling memoir, Mother of Peace (2020). “Streams and rivers start at different places but have the same destination, one great ocean. A stream that refuses to flow simply dies.”
“In the same way,” she continued, “religions that only cling to their own doctrines and refuse to unite with others die spiritually and eventually dry up. A religious teaching that explains God’s original nature must now emerge.”
Earth Day serves as a global reminder of our individual and collective impact on the earth, and our power to heal and restore it. This interconnectivity between humanity and the environment is also a great responsibility and opportunity to harmonize with our Creator.
“To care for and love the environment is to love God,” wrote True Father in his autobiography, As a Peace-Loving Global Citizen (2009). “The shortcut to protecting nature is to develop a heart that loves nature.”
You can learn ways to celebrate Earth Day here.