Divesting the Heart from Dunya

February 13th and 14th is Global Divestment Day. On these two days the divestment movement intends to send a message to the world. To avoid catastrophic climate change, we must divest from fossil fuels.

But fossil fuels isn’t really the issue, it’s divesting our hearts from dunya that should be the message of the these two days. Climate change is a symptom of a spiritual problem. And spiritual problems can’t be solved by material means.

Whether fossil fuels, fracking or tar sands, it’s all the same; seeking happiness and freedom in the material world. What we actually find is misery and captivity, no amount of material wealth will suffice us, this treasure can only be found within ourselves.

This is the message the world needs to hear. We can no longer afford to blame “things” like fossil fuels for our problems. We must take an honest look in the mirror and acknowledge that we are the problem. From production to consumption there is nothing else responsible.

So where do we go from here? We can begin to build our spiritual resilience with fasting. Regular fasting increases our discipline, which is what we need to divest our hearts from exploitative industries that place profits over people and the planet.

Small actions done consistently over time is a proven way to build spiritual capacity. Start by learning the issues and observe the connections in daily life. Look for your fossil fuel dependencies and reflect on what you can do to reduce or eliminate them.

The perennial spiritual practice is prayer. Are we dependent upon something that is causing harm to any of God’s creation? Even in our dependency, we can pray for an opening, a way out of being an unwilling participant to suffering in the world.

The hijrah continues…