By Ken Madden

As Buddhists, we are aware that one of the Marks of Existence is our interdependence with all-that-is: sometimes called dependent origination.

This means that we affect—and are affected by—everything that goes on: in everything that we come in contact with or that happens.

But this understanding can be kind of, well, intellectual. We live our lives with separate perspectives: I ate my breakfast today and you ate yours. We don’t easily see ourselves as not-separate from the all-that-is. Learning this perspective is a major part of the Buddhist practice.

One of the most important ways that interdependence can be understood, and the way that needs our most direct attention right now, is to see and feel our place on this planet we call Earth. But without direct experience of our impact on the world, on our environment, it can be just another intellectual exercise.

Luckily, there are ways to have a profound experience of the impact of human society, and our own impact, on this world.

This weekend, on Saturday May 15th at noon Eastern Time, 9am Pacific, a Deep Time Walk will be held under the direction of the Green Exodus initiative.

From the Green Exodus page:

You can listen to the free app on your phone with headphones as you walk 4.6 km. The Deep Time Walk calculates your speed and distance as you journey across 4.6 billion years of time, enabling you to learn about key evolutionary events as they occur and comprehend the impact of human history on the Earth’s complex climate.

This event will be both online and inplace.

Green Exodus gatherings use contemplation, creativity, community and a fresh look at the cosmos to realign our relationship with the Earth. I am a participant. More info can be found here:



Sensei Ken was ordained in Kyoto and joins us after teaching for over a decade at a local Buddhist Temple. He is the University of Calgary Buddhist Chaplain and actively works for Interfaith harmony. He created and has run The Circle Sangha: their mindful practices of emotional intelligence align with Calgary Buddhist Meditation. His approach is non-sectarian and practical, and he is delighted when Buddhist understanding aligns with science. Oh! and this life can be joyful and fun and kind when we allow our difficulties to drift away!


Photo: Pixabay

Editor: Dana Gornall