Today's Daily Prism, in honor of Earth Day, features a contemplation from a work in progress, "Connection: A Book of 48 Natural Contemplations."
Interconnectedness“The ocean is impossibly complicated, interconnected, turbulent and nonlinear and it touches every part of life. … Every third molecule of carbon dioxide you exhale is absorbed into the ocean. Every second breath you take comes from the oxygen produced by plankton,” writes Alanna Mitchell in "Seasick: Ocean Changes and the Extinction of Life on Earth"
Take coral reefs as an example. Sometimes referred to as the rainforests of the sea, coral reefs are the most diverse of all marine ecosystems. Coral, a live animal, is complicated, fragile, and sensitive to changes in the sea.
“Coral reefs are the largest structures of biological origin on Earth, and rival old-growth forests in the longevity of their ecological communities,” explains experts at NOAA. A coral reef can be compared to a metropolitan city of interdependent species.
Thanks to this symbiosis of the sea, coral benefits humankind by not only producing some of the oxygen that we breathe, but by protecting our shorelines from storm surges, food production, tourism and even medicine.
The contemplationI wish to understand the puzzle of life from the sea. I wish to understand the puzzle of my own complicated, interconnected, turbulent and nonlinear life.
As I breathe in the oxygen from the sea that fuels my body, I will exhale the negative from my heart.
Each breath will be like every drop of water that becomes the sea — a vast pool of life worth living. The interconnectedness of water, air and life will help me solve the puzzle.