My forest ecologist friends like Don Falk and Peter Friederici remind me that true restoration of wild habitats is not merely about getting “the composition of species” right, but also getting the structural relationships and processes right, restoring wildfires, water flows and other dynamics to their appropriate roles.
So what might that suggest to us about what we need to do to restore human communities to a place of dignity, functionality and full creative potential?
Perhaps we have focused far too much on the “composition” – who is in charge, and not enough on getting the structural relationships of collaborative capacity and the dynamism of innovation and social justice right.
“Nature” is not just our “backdrop” in the ecological theater and evolutionary play we participate in; its species, adaptations to wildfires and hydrological flows are also participants in what my mentor Richard Rohr calls the Divine Dance.
Nature is our teacher, our role model and the measure by which we can judge our own successes and failures. Let’s get our structure and process right!