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It is good to see sustainability in a broader context. You need knowledge about the whole integral system that makes up the earth and all the relationships that exist between people and between all living organisms. The next quest creates a closer bond within a group and takes you back to the origins of humans and its connection to the animal kingdom.


Source: from Joanna Macy’s workshops

  1. Find a classmate.
  2. Take his/her left hand in your left hand and close your eyes.
  3. How does this hand feel, is it warm, cold, hard, soft? Imagine it’s the first hand you’ve ever touched. What’s up with this hand? feel the knuckles, nails, fingers…. What is this hand doing? Does he help in the garden? Does he cook at night? Does he bring newspapers around?
  4. Now go back in the history of this hand. Do you feel the hand as it was as a small child? When he played with dolls or cars? Can you feel the hand when he was just born?
  5. Now go back even further in your imagination. Can you feel this hand when he was still a monkey’s paw? when he clutched at the branches of the trees? When he picked a fruit high up in the tree?
  6. Do you feel the hand like a dinosaur’s claw? Do you feel the sharp nails, the scales on the back?
  7. And do you feel the fin of a fish, before this hand crawled on land? Do you feel the water of the ocean flowing around your hand? And if you feel very well now, do you feel the dust of the stars of which this hand is composed?
  8. Now without words and with your eyes still closed, say goodbye to this hand and turn away from this person without opening your eyes.


Let us once again feel the connection between people and the animal world.

Learning Outcomes

A deeper connection with all living things.


No materials are required for this activity.


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