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2003: Riley Moffatt - Ua Mau Ke Ea O Ka Aina I Ka Pono: A Global Paradigm


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2003: Riley Moffatt - Ua Mau Ke Ea O Ka Aina I Ka Pono: A Global Paradigm

R Moffatt

Riley Moffat grew up in Mesa, Arizona, as a desert rat. When he left on his mission to the Southern States his mother, Helen Moffat, moved to Hawaii to be the librarian at the Church College of Hawaii. When Riley eventually enrolled at CCH he got seriously involved in school and surfing. Before graduating in 1972 with a degree in business and history he also got the courage to marry Connie Reinwand. The University of Hawaii offered him a scholarship to study library science and after graduating in 1973 they went to Tonga to direct the library services for the Church schools there. Moffat also taught extension classes for the University of the South Pacific and designed the new libraries for Saineha High School in Vava'u and Moroni High School in Kiribati. The diving, fishing, sailing and surfing were also great.

When the Moffats were deciding whether to stay in Tonga or not, BYU in Provo offered him a job as the new Map and Geography Librarian. His love of maps made this an opportunity too good to pass up. While at BYU he also earned another master's degree in geography and cartography. However, the winters there were long and cold, so when an opportunity arose to return to BYU-Hawaii the Moffats jumped at the chance. By then they had four children: Luke, Zac, Molly, and Betsy.

For the past 16 years Moffat has been a reference librarian at BYU-Hawaii and occasionally taught geography and surfing classes. In the past 20 years he has also published seven books on various themes in historical geography and cartography, as well as numerous articles, chapters, and conference papers. Presently he has contracts for five more books. In his spare time he has served as a bishop of a community ward and as Alumni Association president. Life has been good, so when you hotshots see an old man sitting out in the lineup, give him a break and let him have a wave once in a while.


We are here today in honor of President David O. McKay, a prophet of God and a great educator. If it were not for his vision of this university and his development of education in the Church from primary to tertiary as well as seminaries and institutes we would not be here today and I would not have the great job I have now.

For most of us President McKay is a figure in history, but there are still a few of us who remember him at the pulpit in the Tabernacle and from various other personal interactions. One of my earliest memories is just after he became president of the Church he came to dedicate our chapel in Arizona. The chapel was filled to overflowing of course so folding chairs were placed in the aisle for extra seating and I occupied the one in front next to the deacons bench. My memory is of a large man with a full head of white hair and in warmer climes like Arizona he wore his trademark cream linen suit. A few years ago as I helped compile our family history I was delighted to read in my grandmothers diary that as newlyweds they liked to double date with another young married couple name David and Emma McKay. And I noticed on her funeral program that Elder David O. McKay was the main speaker.

When I was a student here years ago and outsiders thought everyone studying at the Church College of Hawaii was training for the ministry I tried circulating a petition to change the name of C.C.H. to McKay College to honor his vision of what we are about here today. President David O. McKay's legacy is central to all we do here both in our secular as well as religious education.

Kauikeaouli

Now let me take you back to July 31, 1843 to the dusty plain at the edge of the village of Honolulu in the Kingdom of Hawaii. British Admiral Richard Thomas raises the Hawaiian flag symbolizing the restoration of the Kingdom of Hawaii to His Majesty, Kauikeaouli, Kamehameha III. Captain Lord George Paulet of the British Navy had overstepped his authority five months earlier and demanded that the King cede sovereignty of the Islands to Britain in order to settle certain claims by British subjects in Hawaii. (photo of Kam III) In receiving his kingdom back, the King expressed his feelings that afternoon in Kawaiahao Church by uttering what has become the official state motto of Hawaii: "Ua mau ke ea o ka aina i ka pono", usually translated into English as: "The life of the land is preserved in righteousness". The site of the flagraising is now called Thomas Square, just mauka of the Blaisdell Center.

At first I thought his now famous phrase was meant to express Kauikeaouli's gratitude for the restoration of his kingdom. It probably was, but as I thought about this phrase more and more I sensed a deeper, more spiritual meaning that reflected his feelings as a Hawaiian regarding his relationship to the land. Using Hawaii's motto as a model or paradigm, I want to explore our relationship to the land focusing particularly on the LDS and Hawaiian points of view.

The earth and our relationship to it are at the core of our existence and success as human beings. The fact that man has often felt that there is a spiritual relationship to the earth is not new and in fact is important to LDS and Hawaiian thought.

Man-Land Tradition

First let us look at our relationship to the land from the perspective of academic geography. When looking at the relationship between man and the earth he lives on there are two basic traditions. In the Western tradition, usually based on Judeo-Christian teachings, and particularly from the Protestant viewpoint in the United States, man is taught to see the land as created for his use and benefit; hence the commandment for man to have dominion over the earth and to subdue it. I feel this has sometimes been misconstrued to give man license to rape and pillage and plunder the earth for his benefit almost without regard for any consequences.

The common view in Eastern and primitive societies is for man to relate to the land in a symbiotic or cooperative relationship where man seeks to coexist with nature rather than attempting to control or dominate it. Religion in human societies seeks to explain and guide our relationships with the environment. Historically, religion wants man to maintain a harmonious relationship with the land so that nature will be kind to humans. However, the Protestant ethic that most of us have grown up with gives the perception that human action can control aspects of nature and mitigate or minimize the impacts of natural hazards. This ethos views nature as a set of natural resources to be used by man to satisfy his needs and wants.

Lynn White, writing in the journal Science, addresses the paradigm shift that laid the foundation for the environmental situation we have today when he describes the philosophical shift in the man-land relationship.

Writes White: "The industrial revolution brought the idea that scientific knowledge meant technological power over nature. The emergence in widespread practice of the creed that scientific knowledge means technologic power over nature dates from about 1850. Its acceptance as a normal pattern of action may mark one of the greatest events in human history since the invention of agriculture; and in nonhuman terrestrial history as well.

"What people do about their ecology depends on what they think about themselves in relation to things around them. Human ecology is deeply conditioned by beliefs about our nature and destiny - that is, by religion.

"Man named all the animals, thus establishing his dominance over them. God planned all of this explicitly for man's benefit and rule: no item in the physical creation had any purpose save to serve man's purposes. And, although man's body is made of clay, he is not simply part of nature: he is made in God's image. Christianity, in absolute contrast to ancient paganism and Asia's religions, insisted that it is God's will that man exploit nature for his proper ends."

"At the level of the common people this worked out in an interesting way. In Antiquity every tree, every spring, every stream, every hill had its own genius loci, its guardian spirit. Before one cut a tree, mined a mountain, or dammed a brook, it was important to placate the spirit in charge of that particular situation, and to keep it placated. By destroying pagan animism, Christianity made it possible to exploit nature in a mood of indifference to the feelings of natural objects. The spirits in natural objects, which formerly had protected nature from man, evaporated. Man's effective monopoly on spirit in this world was confirmed, and the old inhibitions regarding the exploitation of nature crumbled.

"What we do about ecology depends on our ideas of the man-nature relationship. More science and more technology are not going to get us out of the present ecologic crisis until we find a new religion, or rethink our old one." End quote.

This modern world view of the man-land relationship is the foundation of the cultural geography principles of: (PowerPoint slide) Environmental determinism = nature, or the environment, determines the best way of doing things. An example of this would be the house design and clothing of people in Samoa versus the Eskimos of Alaska; life is much more comfortable in Samoa living in an open sided fale and with minimal clothes versus the heavily insulated igloo and warm fur clothes of the Eskimo. Possibilism = nature provides a range of opportunities for man to use; the theory is that within the range of environmental possibilities, a society's cultural needs, traditions and technology level will dictate which options they will utilize. This human adaption, or utilization of the environment, creates a cultural landscape.

Berkeley geographer Carl Sauer asked the question of how things came to be when he looked at the evolution of the human cultural landscape. He saw the Earth as a dynamic organism, building and eroding and healing, like new lava flows being broken down and repopulated by plants and animals. Six months after lava covered the Hawaiian oceanside community of Kalapana and extended the shoreline over a quarter mile out to sea I saw new plants and animals inhabiting the lava flow. Sauer saw man as an agent in changing the face of the earth and asked the question: "can it be beaten down beyond its ability to heal itself?"

We believe that the Earth is a dynamic organism when we see volcanoes and earthquakes change the landscape. Scientific evidence indicates that the continents, or tectonic plates, have been moving, shifting, pulling apart and colliding, throughout earth's history creating the land masses we live on today. The Pacific Plate that Hawaii sits atop is moving west northwest at the speed your fingernail grows, slowly, relentlessly. Then weather and other natural processes erode these landscapes further changing their shape. Now in our era man also becomes an agent of change.

All this natural change takes place so slowly that to man's eyes nature seemed in harmonious balance. As man developed the technology to affect change in ever more rapid rates the negative consequences began becoming apparent. As early as 1847 George Marsh began warning Americans of the environmental dangers of wholesale clear cutting of native forests and of overgrazing sheep denuding the hillsides causing soil erosion. He pointed out how such activity over time had degraded the landscapes of ancient Rome and the Holy Land to the detriment of those civilizations. Writes March: "Man has too long forgotten that the earth was given to him for usufruct alone, not for consumption, still less for profligate waste"

LDS View

Now let us look at the man-land relationship from the LDS perspective as revealed to prophets throughout the dispensations of time. The gospel of Jesus Christ as revealed in these latter days speaks particularly to the topic of the relationship of man to the land. It talks of the spiritual relationship we have with the Earth and it gives us an awareness of our responsibility as stewards of the Earth.

To create is to organize, though the elements are eternal. Jehovah under the direction of Elohim created or organized the earth. Genesis chapter 2 tells us all things were created spiritually before they were created naturally upon the face of the Earth. According to the Book of Moses, plants and animals were created spiritually before they were created naturally.

Joseph Smith, in the King Follett discourse, taught: (slide) "You ask the learned doctors why they say the world was made out of nothing; and they will answer, 'Doesn't the Bible say He created the world?' And they infer, from the word create, that it must have been made out of nothing. Now, the word "create" came from the word baurau, which does not mean to create out of nothing: it means to organize; the same as a man would organize materials and build a ship".

A principle of LDS theology is that Christ or Jehovah, acting under the direction of His Father, Elohim, was and is the creator of all things, and was aided in the creation of this earth by "many of the noble and great" spirit children of our Father in Heaven. Unto these superior spirits the Lord said in the Book of Abraham: "We will go down, for there is space there, and we will take of these materials, and we will make an earth whereon these may dwell." There is no revealed account of the spirit creation of the Earth, however the books of Genesis and Moses provide some description of the physical creation.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie tells us that "this earth was created as a living thing" with a spirit and in the course of its existence is destined to pass through the same stages of existence as man and all other creations, such as a spiritual creation, a physical creation, baptism, physical death, and resurrection in a celestial state. Writes Elder McConkie: "Animals, birds, fowls, fishes, plants, and all forms of life occupy an assigned sphere and play an eternal role in the great plan of creation, redemption, and salvation. They were all created as spirit entities in the pre-existence".

There is great concern in modern society that we are overpopulating the Earth and there is not enough food and resources to take care of everyone's needs. This is a common excuse and reason we hear for promoting things like family planning and abortion. On April 23, 1834 the Lord revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith information on the United Order recorded in Section 104. In the revelation the Lord tells us that He has considered our condition in these latter days and planned accordingly to take care or our needs if we act wisely. Starting in verse 13 the Lord tells us:

13 For it is expedient that I, the Lord, should make every man accountable, as a steward . over earthly blessings, which I have made and prepared for my creatures.
14 I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built . the earth, my very handiwork .; and all things therein are mine.
15 And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine.
16 But it must needs be done in mine own way .; and behold this is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor . shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.
17 For the earth . is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.
18 Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance . which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law . of my gospel, unto the poor . and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell ., being in torment.

Here the great Jehovah is reminding Joseph Smith that as the Creator, He has provided for His people and that if they act properly there will be "enough and to spare". We continually see reports in the media of malnutrition and outright starvation occurring in various places around the world. What are we to make of this in terms of the Lord's declaration? It is true that the Earth has more than enough capacity to provide for its inhabitants. But because of war, greed, politics, and poor planning those resources are not being made available to the people who need them. While at the same time some affluent countries like the United States are paying farmers billions of dollars not to grow food for economic reasons. Professor Kimzey addressed the economic aspects of this issue beautifully in his 1997 David O. McKay lecture.

Furthermore in Section 59 verses 16 to 21 the Lord says:

16 ... the fulness of the earth is yours, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air, and that which climbeth upon the trees and walketh upon the earth;
17 Yea, and the herb, and the good . things which come of the earth, whether for food or for raiment ., or for houses, or for barns, or for orchards, or for gardens, or for vineyards;
18 Yea, all things which come of the earth, in the season thereof, are made for the benefit and the use . of man, both to please the eye and to gladden the heart;
19 Yea, for food and for raiment, for taste and for smell, to strengthen the body and to enliven the soul.
20 And it pleaseth God that he hath given all these things unto man; for unto this end were they made to be used, with judgment, not to excess, neither by extortion.
21 And in nothing doth man offend God, or against none is his wrath kindled, save those who confess . not his hand in all things, and obey not his commandments.

Here the Lord makes it very clear why he created the earth and "all the good things which come of the earth". It is for the "benefit and use of man" and that they are "made to be used, with judgment, not to excess, neither by extortion". These revelations obviously temper the concept of domination that some philosophies and cultures seem to promote.

There seems to be scriptural evidence that when human kind acts poorly that the Lord will alter the landscape as a form of punishment. Consider the vision of Enoch in Moses chapter 7 verses 4 through 8 where Enoch saw the people of Canaan at war with the people of Shum. The people of Canaan destroyed the people of Shum and the land was cursed, becoming barren and unfruitful and with much heat forever. LDS scholar John Pratt hypothesizes this story may be linked to the rapid climatic change of the Sahara region from a fertile savanna landscape teeming with animals and hospitable to humans to a barren desert over the course of perhaps just a few centuries about 6000 years ago as described by Robert Kunzig in his recent article in Discovery titled "Exit from Eden (How the Sahara Became a Desert)".

But getting back to the Lord's declaration to Joseph Smith: doesn't His instructions express the same hope that Kamehameha III expressed nine years later in Honolulu?: that the Creator made the Earth to support the people but that it would provide bounteously for all only as the people were righteous or "pono". The Lord tells Joseph Smith and us that there will be sufficient for our needs if we act wisely and righteously, or "pono", and that there will be consequences if we do not. Lilikala Kame'eleihiwa, in her dissertation " Native Land and Foreign Desires", tells us that throughout the transition from a traditional Hawaiian kingdom to a constitutional monarchy that could deal with Western economic and social impacts that the king and chiefs continually desired to do that which was "pono" according to what they had learned from their Protestant Christian advisors.

Hawaiian View

Traditional Hawaiian cosmology also sought to explain the relationship of man to the earth. I believe the traditional Hawaiian view of the man-land relationship was in many respects similar to our LDS view while at the same time following the standard non-western traditions. According to the "Kumulipo", a chant composed to describe the creation of the earth, the chiefs, or ali'i, inherited the responsibility of being stewards over the land which Wakea, the sky-father, and Papa, the earth-mother, had created. The ali'i managed the resources of earth and sea for the benefit of the human population. Man in Hawaii was meant to live harmoniously with nature.

Noted Hawaiian scholar, Lilikala Kame'eleihiwa describes this relationship from the Hawaiian point of view:

"In traditional Hawaiian society, as in the rest of Polynesia, it is the duty of younger siblings and junior lineages to love, honor, and serve their elders. This is the pattern that defines the Hawaiian relationship to the 'Aina and the kalo that together feed Ka Lahui Hawaii. Thus, the "modern" concepts of aloha 'Aina, or love of the Land, and Malama 'Aina, or serving and caring for the Land, stem from the traditional model established at the time of Wakea. The Hawaiian does not desire to conquer his elder female sibling, the 'Aina, but to take care of her, to cultivate her properly, and to make her beautiful with neat gardens and careful husbandry.

"Moreover, throughout Polynesia, it is the reciprocal duty of the elder siblings to hanai (feed) the younger ones, as well as to love and ho'omalu (protect) them. The relationship is thereby further defined: it is the 'Aina, the kalo, and the Ali'i Nui who are to feed, clothe, and shelter their younger brothers and sisters, the Hawaiian people. So long as younger Hawaiians love, serve, and honor their elders, the elders will continue to do the same for them, as well as to provide for all their physical needs. Clearly, by this equation, it is the duty of Hawaiians to Malama 'Aina, and, as a result of this proper behavior, the 'Aina will malama Hawaiians. In Hawaiian, this perfect harmony is know as pono, which is often translated in English as "righteous" but actually denotes a universe in perfect harmony". End quote.

This desire for perfect harmony obviously describes a symbiotic relationship rather than the dominating relationship espoused by the Protestant missionaries who brought Christianity to Hawaii. Therefore we often hear the saying: "Malama ka 'aina" which means to take care of the 'aina and the 'aina will take care of you.

Hawaiians used restrictions called kapu to keep nature in equilibrium and maintain harmony.

The Hawaiian kapu system regulated among other things man's impact on the land by controlling how and when certain natural resources could be harvested or taken, thereby assuring replenishment. For example certain fish could not be taken during certain seasons allowing them to reproduce in peace. Or certain reefs would be put under kapu until fish stocks replenished. For several years the State had a moratorium on spear fishing off Waikiki based on this traditional use of kapu so that depleted fish stocks could regenerate. After seeing fish populations depleting, the Mo'omomi, Moloka'i Hawaiian community began developing its own kapu system to regulate and restore its fishing resource along its shoreline.

Regarding the harvesting of certain feathers from birds to make cloaks and kahili Kamehameha the Great is reported to have said: "The feathers belong to me, but the birds themselves belong to my heirs". Traditionally Hawaiians would trap brightly hued forest birds and pluck select feathers to use in creating artifacts such as feathered capes then release the birds to grow more.

Noted Hawaiian master navigator Nainoa Thompson has this to say about his view of the kapu system as it relates to Hawaii's natural resources:

(video clip)

There is evidence the ancient Hawaiians learned the value of regulating their use of limited natural resources the hard way. Due to a lack of natural predators here in Hawaii certain animals and plants over time lost defensive mechanisms such as thorns on plants or the ability to fly for certain species of birds. This lack was taken advantage of by the new human arrivals and some species quickly became extinct. Pigs and other introduced animals ate the otherwise defenseless plants. Archaeological investigations in Hawaii by Patrick Kirch and others indicate serious soil erosion and deforestation through early Hawaiian Neolithic agricultural practices that led to ecological damage to reefs and other ecosystems. In order to clear forest and bush areas for fields they used traditional slash and burn techniques that led to soil erosion. Hawaii's tropical soils are weak and their nutrients were quickly used up by crops. Hence the need to continually clear more new land out of the aboriginal forest that covered almost all of the cultivatable land of the islands. By learning to use irrigation by diverting streams into "auwai" or ditches and by building terraced field systems to hold back soil erosion they became better stewards of their limited natural resources. Building fish ponds to grow fish on a controlled basis undoubtedly took pressure off reef and pelagic fish stocks. In the last two centuries since the arrival of Westerners livestock grazing and other activities destroyed forested areas up in the cloud bands on Maui and the Big Island that have actually reduced precipitation there and the land is moving toward desertification. On Maui, Ka Ohana o Kahikinui, a group of Hawaiian homesteaders, want to restore the forest ecosystem of the Kahikinui moku uplands on the south slope of Haleakala to hopefully increase the precipitation and make the land habitable once again.

In her thought provoking video "Living on Islands", Victoria Keith records Hawaiian master navigator Nainoa Thompson and Hawaiian scholar, Davianna McGregor speaking to the theme of how they view the relationship of man to the land, particularly the islands of Hawaii which they see as a microcosm of the world as a whole. Let's listen to their comments:

(video clip)

Consider the Hawaiian proverb: "He ali'i ka 'aina, he kaua ke kanaka = The land is a chief, man is a steward." We must become careful stewards of the land; or kahu o ka 'aina.

Application

Now, what does this man-land relationship mean for us here today? One of the educational outcomes the University has set for itself is to create an awareness and responsibility among students for the environment as an indication of being generally educated in the liberal arts tradition. The BYU-Hawaii General Education mission statement of June 19, 2001 states: (slide) "Be globally responsible: The student will recognize the interdependence of global forces and local contexts, learning to act with an understanding of the social and environmental issues that shape the world". To my mind to be generally educated means to have an understanding of the issues so that when we return to our various communities we can effectively participate in the dialogue and decision making processes that will shape our quality of life.

The Lord counseled Joseph Smith and the Saints in Section 88, verses 77 to 80:

77 And I give unto you a commandment that you shall teach . one another the doctrine . of the kingdom.
78 Teach ye diligently and my grace shall attend you, that you may be instructed . more perfectly in theory, in principle, in doctrine, in the law of the gospel, in all things that pertain unto the kingdom of God, that are expedient for you to understand;
79 Of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly . come to pass; things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms-
80 That ye may be prepared in all things when I shall send you again to magnify the calling whereunto I have called you, and the mission with which I have commissioned you.

And again in Section 101 verses 32 to 34 the Lord says:

32 Yea, verily I say unto you, in that day . when the Lord shall come, he shall reveal . all things-
33 Things which have passed, and hidden things which no man knew, things of the earth, by which it was made, and the purpose and the end thereof-
34 Things most precious, things that are above, and things that are beneath, things that are in the earth, and upon the earth, and in heaven.

This tells us it is important to understand our world and its inhabitants. If our ultimate goal is to become like God; to have what He has, to know what He knows, and to do what He does, then the better we understand how this world functions the better prepared we will be when we have the opportunity to create our own worlds for our own spirit children. In Section 130, verses 18 and 19 the Lords tells us that the more intelligence we gain in this life the better prepared we will be for our work in the next life.

President David O. McKay prophesied that "from this school will go men and women whose influence will be felt for good towards the establishment of peace internationally" Not only should a generally educated student leave BYU-Hawaii with an understanding of the world around them but should be prepared to lead and participate in discussions in their communities about critical environmental issues. Our students should not only leave here with a correct understanding and appreciation of the purpose of life but an understanding of the purpose of the Earth. The world's population will continue to increase, limited natural resources will have heavier demands placed upon them, critical decisions will need to be made in the coming years. Those who understand the issues will be able to shape the debate and provide leadership that will seriously effect the quality of life for millions if not billions of our Father in Heaven's children.

Hawaii is a microcosm of the world in terms of growing population and development pressure on limited natural resources. Consider Hawaii's energy needs and sources; we have here in Hawaii unlimited free ocean, wind and solar power versus imported oil generated power. About ninety percent of Hawaii's energy needs are now produced by burning fuel oil. The world's supply of economically recoverable petroleum may be exhausted in your lifetime. Even before then something may happen to prevent Hawaii from receiving the oil we're accustomed to consuming. What will we do then: learn to get along without electricity while we feel the free wind blow by, watch the free sun shine brightly, and listen to the free waves crash on the shore?; watching the wind turbines on the hill behind Turtle Bay continue to rust away unused.

Consider Hawaii's food needs: we are building houses on prime agricultural land then agonizing over imported food prices and shipping strikes. Though our diet may be altered, should we tolerate empty grocery store shelves while agriculturally productive land grows housing subdivisions instead of crops? These are examples of not only the need to learn to live within our means environmentally but to develop and utilize appropriate alternative technologies. Remember that hundreds of thousands of Hawaiians lived here for at least 1500 years totally self sufficient. They had no container ships arriving every week. These kinds of issues are critical to Hawaii but they can happen anywhere else in the world in varying degrees of seriousness. These kinds of issues must be debated and critical decisions need to be made. As generally educated informed citizens we need to shape that debate and those decisions in ways that will enable the land to support us equitably over the long term.

Carl Sauer said: "We effect and disrupt the earth when we extract raw materials - plant, animal, mineral. We need to be wise stewards of finite resources. We should be careful how we alter ecosystems and environments by clearing land or introducing non-native species, unbalancing the equilibrium, damaging the natural fertility of soils, extracting finite non-renewable resources such as petroleum, thus guaranteeing their depletion within a given period of time, or extracting renewable resources such as fish and lumber at a rate faster than they can be renewed." If man doesn't learn to be a wise steward of the earth then Jared Diamond's analogy of the fate of Rapa Nui in his article entitled "Easter's End" where the people of Rapa Nui consumed vital natural resources virtually to extinction then watched their quality of life seriously suffer could be realized on a much grander scale elsewhere.

Our Father in Heaven created a world for his spirit children to come to that they may prove themselves through their obedience. He saw to it that this Earth had "enough and to spare" for His children to use if they were wise stewards. We have demonstrated that we are quite capable of fouling our nest and rendering places virtually uninhabitable if we act unwisely. Our challenge in these latter days when there are ever growing populations and pressures on limited natural resources is to learn how to plan and act wisely that we may truly preserve the life of the land in righteousness as Kauikeaouli hoped.

Malama ka 'aina. Mahalo.