Some years ago, my grandma was in her fourties and my grandfather used to smoke heavily, dark cigarettes.
They worked in agriculture, growing their own vegetables and wheat fields, and lived in a detached simple house in a village with an unpaved floor made of compacted soil.
My grandfather used to throw away on the floor, inside the house, the rests of the cigarettes he had smoked.
At that time, smoking was perceived as a sign of adulthood in men in Spain. It was something some young boys envied to do.
Later it became a sign of feminism and women independence and, some women, my mother among them, picked up that habit too.
Time passed and both my grandfather and mother quitted smoking. They did so to enjoy a better health state.
Can you imagine nowadays coming home after a long day at work, smoking, and throwing the rests of your cigarettes on your home floor?
To me, it is hard to imaging this. Perception evolves with time. Some habits too.
And yet, every day, many of us take cars that literally smoke millions of gallons of gasoline and diesel. Some to go to work. Some others to go shopping. Sometimes even to grab the newspaper at the kiosk around the corner.
Every day, many of us take often a flight to travel: On vacation. For meetings. To conferences. For the pleasure of traveling by plane. Sending out in the air trillions of gallons of polluted air, as in an unconscious performance of a collective machine-aided smoking ensemble.
Today I read in the newspapers the following: a return trip by flight from London to New York emits per person enough CO2 to melt 3 square meters of artic ice. Hard to believe, isn’t it?
Being a scientist, I checked it myself and I found the original Science article here and calculated the amount of CO2 here. It is quite accurate.
My grandfather was told to quit smoking to improve his health state. He chose to do so and enjoy a high quality life, enjoy more family time and in a better healthy state. He lived a healthy and vibrant life until he turned 86 in this lifetime.
Change is an imperative part of Life. Life is about evolutionary change, and where there is no change, there is no growth and therefore life diminishes.
Change, evolution and Life come all as a consequence of a never-ending process of increasing consciousness, of becoming more aware of the consequences and correlations between what we do, our behaviors, and what we experience.
What is a behavior that you see yourself doing once and again and it is not serving you?
What is your way of “throwing rests of cigarettes on your home floor” that you are willing to change?
What are you going to do about it?
This is my first day riding bike to move around my hometown.
It is a small step, I know, and I am more conscious than yesterday to keeping my house floor – our house floor – clean. As the song Imagine says, I dream some day you will join us and make our Earth a healthier planet, for all of us.