Diane Ackerman On All Life

Diane Ackerman (October 07, 1948 -)

People often use religious terminology when they speak of the spiritual or transcendent. Our yearning to find whole-ness as holiness, and at-one-ment as atonement, fills a need ancient and essential as air. Because English vocabulary offers few ways to describe religious events, except in churchly terms, I often resort to such words as sacred, grace, reverence, worship, holy, sanctity, and benediction, which I cherish as powerful feelings, moods, and ideas. I’m an Earth ecstatic, and my creed is simple: All life is sacred, life loves life, and we are capable of improving our behavior toward one another. As basic as that is, for me it’s also tonic and deeply spiritual, glorifying the smallest life-form and embracing the most distant stars… I believe in the sanctity of life [in the ecological sense] and the perfectibility of people. I believe we should regard all life forms with dignity, respect, affectionate curiosity, and the kind of protectiveness family members feel for one another.