Right now, I’m living in Britain during the incredible Brexit issue and wondering just how it’s going to resolve itself. However, considering the situation and all the debates, it makes me realise that in actual fact, no country can be separate. It’s naive to think that single countries can go on and be successful (however that’s measured!) as completely independent countries, while people in other parts of the world are doing poorly. Let’s see why we’re all actually in this together and why it’s only togetherness that can succeed.
People are born near borders
In countries that have land based borders, can we think that countries are separate from another? People can be born near the borders, maybe less than a mile apart. Is it really possible to say that one person is different to another person just because they happen to fall on either side of an artificial boundary? The importance of this definition is so that governments know from whom they can claim tax and who they can force into battle when an argument comes up. There’s no real distinction between people, and we can’t stop birds and insects flying back and forth across the border. Most of nature doesn’t acknowledge independent countries, only us humans.
Even independent countries breathe the same air
In fact, we might live in different countries and have different cultures and different beliefs that have built up over time, but we all breathe the same air. The weather patterns and winds move the air all over the world without consideration of political issues that have defined apparently independent countries. This is very clear these days with CO2 pollution – the global CO2 concentration is increasing, not just in the atmospheres of the most polluting countries, but affecting the whole world at the same time. It’s even more clear in South-East Asia where fires (used to clear land in Indonesia for palm oil plantations, for example) cause horrendous smoke pollution that spreads into neighbouring countries. Certainly, when it comes to the air we rely on, there are no such things as independent countries.
This highlights the issue that we take breathing for granted. Every time we inhale we expect that there’ll be enough oxygen in that air for us to survive. What happens if, one day, we’ve polluted the air so much that this isn’t true. No single country would be able to solve this in isolation.
The world has only one climate
The world doesn’t care about our artificial boundaries, it just senses the increase in CO2 pollution because of our activity. The whole atmosphere is affected and the climate patterns of the world are changing. The heat of the sun spreads across the whole world without any change at the borders between countries. The world’s climate is a single entity and everything every country does has an effect on it but, in the end, we all have to share and live with just one climate system.
It’s sad to see the United States officially pulling out of the Paris Agreement as I write this.
This is precisely why all countries of the world are coming together to try to agree on joint plans of action to reduce pollution and improve our environment. It’s only together that we can solve this problem but, unfortunately, it is possible for just a few to ruin it for everyone else.
Nuclear fallout knows no borders
What if one country decides to use large amounts of nuclear energy and puts several nuclear power stations near the border with another country, even if the neighbouring country is strongly against nuclear power? Now we have the situation where, if there’s a disaster at one or more of these power stations, the nuclear fallout is not just confined to the country that supported nuclear energy, it spreads into the neighbouring country as well, and even further. Can we possibly say these are independent countries?
Ways we can be separate
Really the only ways we can consider ourselves to be separate are in artificial ways. Each country can create their own currency and finance system, write their own laws, police their borders and tax goods coming into their defined area. All that doesn’t really achieve anything. After some time, we find that even these artificial things, like currency, become inter-related and aren’t really fully separate.
It’s clearly a folly to strive to construct independent countries. The only way to make real progress is to join together more and more with our neighbours.
The way forward – building strength rather than independent countries
Ultimately, we have to become conscious that we are all in everything together. The whole human race has to realise that we are part of the world (even though humans can be a very dangerous part of the world) that needs to cooperate and live as one to prosper. We also have to acknowledge that we’re part of the whole package of nature on this small and isolated planet in the universe.
This crucial consciousness or awareness is definitely awakening in the world today and we’re beginning to take the right path.
All the countries of the world do not have to form a single union (although that might be good), but we need to cooperate with each other. We can still have different regions of the world each with a different heritage and outlook, but still seeing the crucial importance of cooperation. Having different laws in each region can be good as we this can be a way to challenge each other and to find ways we can do better.
Within each of the apparently independent countries, citizens band together as a common people and we feel good about that. It’s an important part of our humanity to belong to a group or a tribe. Why does this have to stop at the border? Why can’t we band together more and more, across the globe, as a common people and feel good about that?
This is precisely what we need, coming together globally, to solve our current pollution and over-consumption problems. We need to come together as a common people, and this is starting to happen (it just needs to happen faster). Then I look at the United Kingdom at the moment and there’s a fascination with the potential to be one of the independent countries. This is sad. There are no independent countries and the real power and the real fun is in banding together and doing our best as a common human society.