Christmas in the Ecozoic Era: A Reflection by Mudita Sodder rscj

  • Mudita inside a sacred cave
  • Mudita standing on Holy Ground

Janet Erskine Stuart, a religious of the Sacred Heart of Jesus used to say, The way to do much in a short time is to love much. People will do great things if they are stirred with enthusiasm and love. Mother Earth, our common home, can no longer wait for us to remove our shoes and recognize that we live on holy ground. Can we dare to follow the methodology of love this Christmas, by removing our shoes of greed, ignorance, individualism, consumerism and apathy? In the web of life, we are all dependent on each other…sharing, sacrificing and reaching out to others in need, a bonded duty towards society.

Perhaps somewhere, somehow, we have simply lost direction. And yet, we know that we all have the capacity for changing direction and finding the right path. Our knowledge and resourcefulness as the community of Earth is phenomenal! Christmas is a call, an invitation and a challenge to interior conversion, to communal transformation and to external revitalization, to letting go, to letting emerge, to creation and re-creation. Knowing our responsibility as co-creators with God, we know that we have to work from within the recent horrors of war, climate chaos and destruction, to bring into being a new creation. An inclusive love that is ready to suffer and surrender is the only response. We all know that this is the true meaning of the Paschal Mystery and of Christmas.

Crisis is an opportunity; by using our communal wisdom to cultivate deep listening, we can restore our broken and wounded planet. This will require a more moderate lifestyle, solar farms and green energy, stopping/cutting down on the use of fossil fuels, reducing food waste and using geo-engineering. It will require thinking out of the box, being innovative and more flexible this Christmas; can we buy less and make do with what we have? By reducing beef, cheese and milk consumption, can we help even in a miniscule way? It will require regenerative techniques to preserve the soil, more connection with our clothes for value and longevity, but these in turn will show us the right direction, give us purpose and lead us along the right path. It will require that we stop our insatiable buying, that we do away with our throw-away culture, and above all, that we stop sowing seeds of conflict.

Can we begin to stitch together the patchwork of living entities by connecting to each other this Christmas? Happy Generative Christmas 2023 – this year, may we plant seeds of understanding and build compassionate human communities of living hope.

Mudita Menona Sodder rscj
Sophia College Campus, Mumbai


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