Dear Earth: Love, grief & activism
“I read Satya Robyn’s new book last night from start to finish. What can I say? It’s brilliant, insightful, stirring and impactful. It’s made me think about my role and responsibility in helping the world, and that I must do more. From heart-warming and honest stories—laced with the guilt, frustration, helplessness, joy and wonder she experiences—while living in, and navigating a burning world, through to the heart-wrenching and emotional accounts of the protests she attends with Extinction Rebellion, Satya’s writing is just wonderful.” ~ Liz
How is it to live on this gorgeous planet, knowing about the terrible damage we have caused her and are still causing her? These letters begin with the author’s rude awakening to our current ecological and climate emergency. They journey through the ups and downs of activism (with a few arrests along the way) and touch on the themes of grief, fear and anger, the majesty of the natural world, and the challenges of system change. They return again and again to an acknowledgement of (and forgiveness of) our all too human frailties.
This book doesn’t flinch from the reality of the crisis facing us, and it will also bring you hope and consolation. It will encourage you to enjoy the planet’s rich offerings while we can, and to find ways of expressing your gratitude. These letters, with their mix of the mundane and the extraordinary, are love letters. They are filled with blackbird song, the melting ice-caps, extreme weather, cups of tea, oceans choked with plastic and happy dogs. Maybe they will inspire you to deepen your own relationship with our precious earth.
“Warm and inspiring. Thoroughly enjoyable. A sobering message interlaced with beautiful poetic prose describing nature in all its glory and what exactly we would be missing if it were to decline of even disappear. Utterly joyous, uplifting and honest. Always accepting and forgiving.” ~ Wendy
“Amazon asks me in the free text box ‘what did I use this product for’? The honest answer is a balm for existential despair about the climate.
This is a good book. Its made up of short letters to ‘Earth’, very easy to read. The short letters would perhaps lend themselves to daily reflective practise but I read it all in one go.
In parts it reminds me of one of my favourite podcasts ‘The Guilty Feminist’ which starts with people adlibbing ‘I’m a feminist but’s (I’m a feminist but…I secretly love the very problematic romcom Pretty Woman, and in truth am open to the idea of Richard Gere paying to enter me on a grand piano). Dear Earth captures the tension between trying very hard, with strong ideals, and coming up against the complexity of life. This portrayal of being confronting a crisis that is so big, and yet being stubbornly beautifully human at the same time is well done.
However, the main thing I took from the book is the sense of gentleness and care from the author towards herself, the Earth and all who sail in her, and by extension all of us. There was a particular letter about the wonderfulness of laps, connecting Satya’s lovely dog sitting in her lap, to the idea of lying in the lap of the Buddha and feeling cared for. Seeing the Earth in crisis is hard, being present for what that means can be draining. I found the idea of laps, of being held by something bigger a very reassuring image.” ~ Mikey