The Meaning of Earthlingism

The idea that some lives matter less is the root of all injustice

Earthlingism is a way of consciously living that respects, through our attitudes, choices, language and actions, the inherent rights of all earthlings.

By calling ourselves “earthlings” we are stressing that we are members of one species among many, and that we are opposed to speciesism. We also respect the inherent rights and civil rights of all humans. Earthlings are all one, all stardust.

In Ethical Earthlingism we do not limit our moral considerations to humans. We endeavor to challenge our biases and societal indoctrinations, habits, traditions, rules and laws to honestly be as just as we possibly and practically can be, while recognizing it is impossible to eliminate all harm.

When weighing the ethics of an issue involving someone who is not human we cannot ask them what we should do, so we often find it helpful to imagine a comparable situation for a respected human. An example might be “is it okay to sell or buy someone who isn’t human as a pet?” If we ask ourselves “Is it okay to sell a human as a pet?” the answer is instantly clear.

Exploitation is inherently harmful. Often humans try to find ways to group others based on appearance, ability, nationality, species, gender, age, size, color, religion, etc., and then identify differences from the dominant group, and use those differences as a justification for harm. No difference justifies harm.

When we try
to distinguish our species from other species, humans automatically assign superiority to our own qualities. All species have similarities to and differences from other species, just as individuals of most species do within their species. None of our differences justifies harming anyone.

We may benefit, though, from considering some of our own differences. One difference is that humans are the only species living so completely out of balance with nature we are changing the planet so that it cannot support life as we have known it. It is already too late for many species.

We are the ones who need to change. Earthlingism addresses correcting human-caused issues and cannot be practiced by someone of another species (a canine lo
ved one can be fed an exclusively-plant diet and enjoy exploitation-free shampoo, bedding, leashes, harnesses, and other products, but cannot follow earthlingism).