The Zompopos Project is an attempt to integrate the Human Race with our planet, all its living creatures, and non-living entities. This integration seeks to rescue our sense of time and place (when and where we are), and our sense of belonging (tellurians/terrestrials/earthlings). Looking at our present world, we seem desensitized to the essence of life, and to the very basic principles that provide for our existence and the phenomenon of it. The miracle of life is not electricity, laptops, microprocessors, airplanes, cell phones, automated external defibrillators, MRI machines, e-mail, pasteurized milk, etc. It is way simpler than all of that! And while all of those things are great, as without them perhaps we (you reader and I writer) would not be enjoying the wonder of this medium, the idea is not to forget the simple things that make all wonders possible; and because we are all so involved with modern life, we tend to forget. Thus this project attempts to bridge us back to basics.
We live lives that are conditional on (we can not do without) basic elements; yet, we are so caught up with all else, that we have forgotten about those basic elements to the extent that we are destroying them and, in turn, ourselves. When was the last time you (yes YOU, the one reading this now) looked at the source of drinking water beyond the label on the bottle or the sink’s faucet? There are so many places in the world without water resources, while others have so much!! This is like so many other cases, namely: food, money, health services, etc. Yet, there is a difference; let’s take New York for example, “The Empire State” is called so because of its wealth and variety of natural resources; amongst its greatest: “The thunderous and spectacular Niagara Falls, the rugged mountains of the Adirondacks, the enchanting Catskills, all the lakes great and small, the Hudson River, …” etc. Let’s get closer: New York City, Manhattan! Water all around the island: Is it fresh water or salty? If you do not already know the answer, DO NOT go and have a taste! The levels of contamination are so high that the New York State Department of Health says that one should not eat “more than one meal of fish per week from any of the state’s fresh waters. Some waters in New York have even stricter health advisories.” So much water that can’t be drunk, with so much fish that can’t be eaten does beg the question:
WHAT ARE WE DOING TO OUR WONDERFUL WORLD ?
Shall we examine our daily lives, our ways of life? Are we wasteful? Are YOU? We belong to, and on, this planet (Planet Earth); yet we live our lives as if the earth belonged to us. Yes, this globe that dances around the sun is the house where we belong. It contains and provides all we need to live.
The times we live in are like no time we have lived before; yet, we seem to also lose sight of that. To provide a bit of awareness of our time, here are some points for consideration:
-It is now 2005 (our starting point or point of reference)
-About 500 years ago (around 1490) we knew that the earth was flat and that it was the center of the universe. Seems like yesterday…
-About 150 years ago (until around 1850) people were still being kidnapped and shipped from Africa across the Atlantic Ocean, sold and bought as merchandise, and turned into slaves in the Americas.
-About 60 years ago (in 1946) the first “computer” was turned on; it weighted 30 tons, stood 18 feet high and had 500 miles of wiring; could only store 200 digits.
-About 50 years ago (until around 1954) we still had legal racial segregation: people had to eat at separate tables, go to separate schools, and drink out of separate water fountains based of their skin color.
-About 35 years ago (April 1973) the first phone call on a cellular phone was made; the phone weighted 1 pound and 14 ounces, and it did not hit the market until 1984, still at two pounds, with a price tag of $3,995.
-About 15 years ago (in 1990) the first World Wide Web browser program was written; prior to that, there was no such thing. Yet, today, we think we can not do with out it.
Our lives and our world are moving so fast (and we are so wrapped up in them) that we are losing sight of the things that make life possible: Water, Air, Earth, Fire, and Zompopos!