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Dear Earth, am I a good guy?

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      Dear Earth, am I a good guy?

      I really want to be a good guy.

      I buy ethical toilet paper. I just signed the petition to stop the burning rainforest. I run a temple and I work as a psychotherapist and I try really really hard to be good. Just look at me meditating in front of the Buddha!

      I would at least like there to be bad guys. I can think of a few at the moment who are indisputably bad, bullying, causing horrific harm to the ailing planet, shoring up their own egos. I’m not like them, am I?

      Last night I listened to a woman who lived in an oppressive regime as she described how afraid people were to speak up against their government. I am very privileged – I was born to well-adjusted parents in a very rich country.

      This morning I considered shaving my head before I get arrested in the October rebellion, because I want to look more like a cool Buddhist in the photos. I am very selfish – there are pockets of terror in me and the parts that protect them can be savage.

      When my lunch is late and I am hungry, I get grumpy and sometimes mildly panicked. I am very vulnerable – I live in a narrow world which I’ve worked hard to make safe for me, and much of my steadiness depends on props and circumstance.

      Parts of me have the characteristics of dictators. Parts of me have the characteristics of saints. I’d like to think that I’m in complete control of when the different parts come out to play, but most of how-I-am is determined by my environment.

      Sometimes I am the bad guy. Sometimes I am the good guy. When I remember, Earth, that you see all this and still accept me, I feel better. I can see the darkness in others without it overwhelming me – ‘there but for the grace of God…’ I can lie under one of your gorgeous trees and watch the sun illuminate the leaves, and let this light into all my dark places.

      Please help me to see others as my brothers and sisters, Earth, however much violence they are carrying. Behind the violence is fear, and behind that is love.

      Love, Satya <3

      (the latest from my new Dear Earth project – see more at

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