One definition of plastic is: the exploitation of the energy of our ancestors for our immediate convenience.

This definition is a reminder that the bottle of organic orange and carrot juice you opened and downed in two seconds because you have a cold and you deserve a treat, will take thousands of years to decompose.

But more than that, it is a reminder that there used to be another way. Fossils are the skeletons of our ancestors. Over aeons, these ancient relatives cleverly created energy during their lives and conserved it in their death. Plants and animals gave their lives to become the fossils that are now our fuel, only to be now dug out at great risk to the earth, used for a millisecond, then thrown on the ground and into the oceans, inert and desecrated. Imagine if that plastic juice container was considered a sacred object, and we acknowledged the millennia involved in the earth’s creation of precious oil, that we paid our great respect to the scientists who figured out a way to preserve and protect food ingeniously and conveniently so that we we can save our own valuable energy. We probably wouldn’t just throw the bottle in a yellow-topped bin and cross our fingers that the news about the imminent collapse of the recycling industry is fake.

All that personal energy we are saving by having the convenience of plastic – what are we using it for? Perhaps to power our brains and hearts in order to remember a better way of being in relationship to the earth and each other. Plastic Free July is a great opportunity to remember the sacred nature of all beings, including the countless ones involved in the manufacture of plastic, which is too precious to be considered disposable.

Join in the community conversation here on the CERES Plastic Free July Facebook Group. Order plastic-free fruit and veg from Fair Food, come and get your bulk items from the Grocery, bring your disposable cups and containers to the Merri and Tamil Feasts, and recycle your plastic pots at the Nursery. Or sign up for our next Indonesia trip in 2019, exploring marine protection and the impact of plastic waste.