The following is an excerpt from the new book The Myth of Human Supremacy  by Derrick Jensen (Seven Stories Press, 2016):
“The modern conservative [and, I would say, the human supremacist] is engaged in one of man’s oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.” —John Kenneth Galbraith
I’m sitting by a pond, in sunlight that has the slant and color of early fall. Wind blows through the tops of second-growth redwood, cedar, fir, alder, willow. Breezes make their way down to sedges, rushes, grasses, who nod their heads this way and that. Spider silk glistens. A dragonfly floats a few inches above the water, then suddenly climbs to perch atop a rush.
A family of jays talks among themselves.
I smell the unmistakable, slightly sharp scent of redwood duff, and then smell also the equally unmistakable and also slightly sharp, though entirely different, smell of my own animal body.
A small songbird, I don’t know who, hops on two legs just above the waterline. She stops, cocks her head, then pecks at the ground.
Movement catches my eye, and I see a twig of redwood needles fall gently to the ground. It helped the tree. Now it will help the soil.