David Parry-Davies is the publishing editor of the Enviropaedia, South Africa’s leading Environmental Encyclopaedia.
He has a special combination of soul, skills and business sense, which he has used successfully to produce the Enviropaedia a valuable bridge between business and the environmental lobby. With a background of 20 years in the corporate and marketing sectors he is comfortable interacting with CEOs from big business and speaking in public. But his desk has funky gumboots on its office legs and when David needs to clear his head, he goes sea-kayaking along the Simon’s Town coast.
From Pinstripes to Eco-Logic: David recounts how, when his son was just a kid, he jolted him out of corporate comfort with the words: “Daddy, What do you do? I want to be like you!” A question that would usually connect father and son opened a flood of memories of his childhood in Africa and the doubts about where his generation was taking the world bubbled to the surface. David thought about his special relationship with his grandfather, a long-legged man who danced with wild blue cranes and who had taught him to admire the intelligence of Nature, and realized that the work he was doing was not feeding his soul. It was also at odds with the kind of world he wanted his son to inherit.
Leaving the security of well paid work and the trappings of success to navigate a way into working for a better relationship with the environment was scary at first. His first foray was to market membership to The Friends of the Earth where he was living in London.
Fast forward to today where he shares a growing frustration that although awareness about environmental problems is growing, action still lags far behind. Awareness and most of the action still focuses on the symptoms and on challenging ongoing environmental destruction or on raging against the perpetrators.
David joins a growing number of environmental activists who believe that stopping the behaviour that is destructive to the environmental requires that we address the beliefs, value systems and emotions that drive our destructive behaviour. An essential step requires us to fully acknowledge that we humans are dependent on the Earth’s eco-systems for our survival and that we need to develop a set of value systems and resulting behaviour that is consistent with us being part of Nature and not above it. He has developed a set of principles that reflects this, and whilst he calls this new paradigm of thinking ‘eco-logic’ – it actually goes beyond mental intelligence – to include emotional intelligence and reconnection with Earth intelligence.
This concept of Eco-Logic is a key theme in the 2011 edition of the Enviropaedia, but he is not relying on text alone to promote Eco-Logic thinking and decision–making. He plans a series of speaking engagements in 2012. For more information contact him on:David@enviropaedia.com
“Today we are faced with a challenge that calls for a shift in our thinking,
So that humanity stops threatening its life support system.
We are called to assist the Earth to heal her wounds and in the process heal our own.” Wangari Maathai