Here’s a symbol, along with what I think is an amazing commentary, by the 22-year old head of the Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism, known as the Karmapa, who just visited North America:
Ever since the human race first appeared on this earth, we have used this earth heavily. The earth has given us immeasurable benefit, but what have we done for the earth in return? We always ask for something from the earth, but never give her anything back. We never have loving or protective thoughts for the earth. Whenever trees or anything else emerge from the ground, we cut them down. If there is a bit of level earth, we fight over it.
Now the time has come when the earth is scowling at us; the time has come when the earth is giving up on us. The sentient beings living on the earth and the elements of the natural world need to join their hands together—the earth must not give up on sentient beings, and sentient beings must not give up on the earth. Each needs to grasp the other’s hand.
So doesn’t the Monlam [prayer festival] logo look like two hands clasping each other? We will not give up on the earth! May there be peace on earth! May the earth be sustained for many thousands of years! These are the prayers we make, which is why this symbol is the logo of the Kagyu Monlam.
I also think this might become a symbol of people having affection for the earth and wanting to protect it. It is first and foremost a symbol that we are not giving up on the earth.
I’m in – we need symbols, especially those with such sentiment that gets right to the core: the sentient beings living on the earth and the elements of the natural world need to join their hands together.
I like this symbol. It reminds me of the one seen in the 60’s and early 70’s of black & white hands coming together over racial issues and an older one with hands shaking across the Atlantic showing solidarity between the UK and the USA during WWII.
Do you know of any restrictions (IP-wise) on the use of this one?
I had the same question, re his saying “I also think this might become a symbol of people having affection for the earth and wanting to protect it.” I’ll look into it. I’ve been working on a concept of an “Earth Cadet Academy” where such a logo would be appropriate.
There’s a pin of this symbol available (though currently out of stock) at http://www.namsebangdzo.com/Kagyu_Monlam_Pin_p/15487.htm.