Addressing Nuclear Energy with Greater Comprehension
To learn something from our past is to embrace the need for a new consciousness.
In a country which experiences important earthquakes and tsunamis (and where there is a prediction of a 70% chance of a major earthquake to occur in the next four years), nuclear energy may be efficient and economic, but not “ethical” in that such “accidents” may present risks for the Japanese and for the planet.
Although I would like to believe that it takes a great tsunami, the likes of which we hope to never see again, to create such a disaster, I fear this is wishful thinking. What opened my eyes to graver dangers were two documentaries on the crisis by Arte and the BBC. In these documentaries we see that the reality on the ground is quite different from realities in headquarters miles away.
In one of the Most Industrialized Countries in the World what role did technology play on constraining the Nuclear crisis on the ground?
Experts interviewed by the French channel Arte (Arte Enquete sur une supercatastrophe nucleaire) present an eye opening view to ground realities in a nuclear crisis. Similarly, (BBC This World 2012 Inside the Meltdown) presented me with a disturbing realization: our safety in one of the most industrialized and efficient countries in the world was in part in the hands of car batteries used to reboot electricity in a nuclear plant, manual maneuvers and men with courage.
What would this crisis have looked like elsewhere?
What we see in the documentary is that the rescue team on the ground used simple car batteries taken from their own cars to reboot electricity in a room at a nuclear power plant. They had to resort to manually turn valves to release hydrogen (given that no one envisioned the possibility of an electric outage). We see a small core staff from TEPCO and also firemen who cooled an explosive situation with simple hoses and make-shift maneuvers. These men and their families are the true heroes, but we should not let their effort and gift of their own health and lives fail to teach us something important.
For me, the most important lesson is not nuclear energy nor a debate on whether it is 100% safe, but our actual state of human consciousness.
That we can do no better than use our intelligence to create bombs capable of eliminating much of humanity is a reflection of the current poverty of our consciousness. That we have not yet focused on developing energy that is both safe and whose waste does not pollute our ecosystem for thousands of years is another statement for our era.
When the problem is defined as such, the solution is not the immediate elimination of all nuclear energy (although in some circumstances such as countries with high risks of earthquakes or natural disasters this can be common sense), but the creation of a much more vast human consciousness defined in positive terms. This solution has to encompass a greater vision for man, for technology and for progress itself.
When we fight against Something We give it Power
The distinction may not seem important. However, in the field of positive mental health in which I have worked with Dr. Yukio Ishizuka, we have found that when we fight against something, we give it power. To fight against a depression is to give it importance and strength. To create a war against nuclear energy will also create a strong backlash by powerful forces.
Succeeding in Saying “Goodbye to Nuclear” requires stating Vision in Positive Terms
Rather than defining success in Japan solely as “goodbye to nuclear” and facing formidable resistance by the government and industry, I believe Japan could define success in positive terms so that both the wise generation and the youth will rally behind such a movement and go much further. I think defining success in positive terms will enable Mr. Kenzaburo Oe and Mr. Satoshi Kamata and others to provide a real and important alternative to the Japanese should they decide to shut down all reactors and create an alternative route to nuclear.
Success in Nuclear Defined in Positive Terms
Japan could demonstrate by example to the whole world that green and renewable energy is not only a “moral” choice in a country visited by earthquakes and tsunamis, but a viable choice for an industrialized nation.
Through breakthroughs in technology and innovation Japan can lead the world in renewable energy and establish a new relationship with nature. It can do so in a humane manner that respects the liberty of individuals.
Learning from Crisis
To achieve the above goal defined in positive terms will require tremendous will power, courage and focus. It is likely to involve national and international cooperation and the will of a nation of great minds to make important breakthroughs in renewable energy and innovative technologies. It will also necessitate a nation to make strategic decisions and create innovative funding structures capable of unifying industry with a common aim through an economic downturn. And most importantly, it will require a compassionate Japan that considers and respects the dignity and liberty of all individuals.
Japan will need to create an alternative that currently does not exist. Given the current national and international context, it may well be, the Japanese, who could be amongst the first to succeed.
Fundamental change in a Nation does not start nor end with Nuclear issues
In a world where crisis is mounting and where our will is constantly tested, we need to define our future in clear positive terms. The real problem or challenge is a change in consciousness. This consciousness must embrace greater comprehension, compassion, liberation and realization both at the individual and national level. Anything short of this is not success.
By creating a new Japan that uses its imagination to inspire, and rise above crisis, the Japanese may not only save themselves from the worst, but can provide an inspiring model for the rest of the world. Through greater comprehension, compassion, liberation and realization, we may be able to overcome other disasters in the future, be they nuclear, global warming, rising nationalism, poverty, unjust and unhealthy working conditions or other.
I believe that the Japanese can and will succeed.
Petition for Japan to become a leader in Natural Energy (anyone in any country can participate). Please print out the PDF, sign, send.
Original site with petitions in various languages: http://sayonara-nukes.org/shomei/
Petition for the Realization of Denuclearization and a Society focused on Natural Energy
The petition deadline has been extended to the end of May 2012. We ask for your further support!
English petition form（pdf）
■About the Petition Form■
In Japan, a personally signed petition is still more forceful than an Internet-based signature. Therefore, please print out the English petition form (pdf file) and send it to us by postal mail.
Here are some instructions:
1. The petition consists of two pages which have to be submitted together. Please staple the 1st page with the petition text and the 2nd page with your signatures together.
2. The English petition is addressed to the present Japanese Prime Minister. It is valid even in case the Prime Minister changes. When our organization will submit the petitions, we make sure that the legal requirements for a valid petition are observed.
3. Please send the petition by postal mail (fax is not valid) to the following address:
Citizens’ Committee for the 10 Million People’s Petition to say Goodbye to Nuclear Power Plants
c/o Gensuikin, 1F 3-2-11 Kanda Surugadai, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 101-0062, JAPAN
4. The final deadline of this petition is February 28, 2012. However, we have set two intermediary deadlines: September 10, 2011 and December 20, 2011.
5. Some further notes:
You can write your name and address in your native language.
Petitions from foreign citizens living outside Japan are valid as long as the petition is addressed to the Japanese Prime Minister. In case the petition is addressed to the National Diet (House of Representatives) or the Upper House, petitions from foreigners living outside Japan are not valid.
There is no age limit. Signatures from children are also valid.
In principle, a petition has to be signed personally. In case of children or disabled persons, it is accepted if someone signs the petition on the person’s behalf.
About the Author
Nathalie Ishizuka, a Franco-Japanese from New York, is Director of the Movement Beyond Our Best: Re-inventing Ourselves Silently. She is a meditation coach accompanying visionaries committed to changing themselves with tested techniques of meditation and one area of competence beyond a previous best.