“In nature, nothing exists alone.”
— Rachel Carson, 1962
What is Earth Day?
Happy 49th Earth Day! I think we can all agree the Earth is worth celebrating- its gives us the air we breathe, the water we drink and the energy to live our best lives. But unfortunately Earth Day is not just a celebration of the joys of Mother Nature, it is a call for awareness and action.
Celebrated every year on Aprill 22, Earth Day is now observed in 192 countries, and coordinated by the non-profit Earth Day Network. According to the founder Dennis Hayes Earth Day is now “the largest secular holiday in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year.”
Earth day has achieved some pretty cool things: For the 40th anniversary of Earth Day in 2010, the network behind the celebration launched a campaign to plant one billion trees, a target that was achieved in 2012! This year though it is all about protecting our species.
How does it all relate to me?
If you want to find out your own impact you can complete this assessment to see how many Earths are required to sustain your lifestyle- you may be surprised!- http://www.footprintcalculator.org/
So I hope you will join me this year on my mission to protect the wonderful creatures that keep us alive. But if you need any more convincing, check out these stats for what they really give us.
What can I do?
Luckily there are some amazing yogi companies out there already making a stand for animal welfare and sustainability. I have picked out a few of the brands who we can all learn from to help you have a guilt free practise and experience the Earth in new ways:
‘Choose your Animal’ are a great brand who not only want to make you look great, with their unique designs, featuring endangered animals. They also support those animals by donating 10% of profits, while using recycled plastic bottles for their materials. To put it in context 1 pair of Yoga pants is made from 20 plastic bottles- a double win for the Earth!
Liforme haven’t only been revolutionary with their unique alignment system and unbeatable grip. Their mats are PVC free, biodegradable in 1-5 years and made using high quality non-toxic materials. And they even go a step further by partnering with friends of the earth, RSCPA and ‘Yoga Gives Back’, donating 5% of profits to each. The CEO and founder James Armitage has famously quoted: “I want Liforme to be a leading example of how a business can be socially responsible. Think what we’ll be able to accomplish when one million yogis come together!”
Having leaders like James who are driven for change and collaboration is so powerful in yoga; but as he rightly says it takes for us all to come together.
An amazing lesson we can learn from Teacup Yoga ‘yoga and animal rights’ is how volunteer work deepens the yoga experience, as we become change-makers and stewards of diverse life. They are a grassroots organisation who directly align the practise of yoga with animal rights activism, by offering retreats at or near animal sanctuaries. A big aspect of the retreat is direct engagement by being a volunteer to the animals who have been rescued.
I couldn’t think of a better way to offer up our practice to something outside of ourselves!
This has just been a snapshot of all the brands leading the effort for sustainable practises, but
I hope these examples help prove that you don’t have to compromise on quality, style or fun when you have a sustainable practise!
So if this has inspired you at all- pencil April 22nd into your diaries and when your lovely Sadhana teachers ask you to offer up your practise, think of all the beautiful creatures we share the Earth with and let that guide your flow.
Blog written by Becci Toms