It has been very windy here. It started yesterday. They say the gusts got up to 50 mile per hour, and the sustained winds were at 25. Bluster is a gross understatement. When I took the dogs out late last night, for their final “wee” of the day, I noticed that one of our geese, Millie, had flown outside the fence near the barn.
I noticed, because she was pacing back and forth screaming, at the top of her little goose lungs. And our other goose, Jack, was on the other side of the fence, screaming too. Two screaming geese in the harrowing wind. Branches blowing everywhere. Call the Wizard, Dorothy.
I walked out there, in my slippers, in the mud, and put Millie back where she belonged. The screaming stopped. The wind continued. Branches fell to the ground. The dogs and I went back in the house. My slippers went in the washing machine.
And. This all was cause and effect.
Our whole lives, and this entire place we live in, is ALL cause and effect.
John Muir, and many others have noted the connected-ness of this place.
There is no action that we perform that does not connect to all else. The mere fact that you are exhaling sets off a chemical reaction to all that is around you. Go ahead. I’ll wait while you grab an Altoid.
Another word for that effect is Consequence. Ramification. Repercussion.
Some people are very handy at denying this truth — that for every one one of our actions, there is a consequence. At times in my life, I have made this dreadful mistake.
I guess this is on my mind because I have seen people who completely neglect the consequences. They act as if their ill-gotten behavior mystically disappears.
But instead. They manage to sting, wound, and damage the people in their wake.
And. It is sad.
It is akin to a cozy neighborhood. One fine neighbor bakes delightful and tasty blueberry muffins, and takes them around to all the houses, doling them out to the other fine neighbors. Then another neighbor decides to rub shit on all the neighbors doors, and proceeds to call it blueberry muffins.
I think all the neighbors can tell the difference.
I know when the goose is outside of the fence. Screaming.
“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.”
― William James
“I am not imposed upon by fine words; I can see what actions mean.”
― George Eliot, The Mill on the Floss
“There are in nature neither rewards nor punishments — there are consequences.”
― Robert G. Ingersoll, The Christian Religion An Enquiry