Walking The Walk For Mother Earth

Walking The Walk For Mother Earth

Walking The Walk For Mother Earth

Date- September 11 , 2018

Written by George Balarezo, Intrepid Global Citizen

After cycling in many unforgiving parts of the world, I have become an environmentalist. My passion for tour cycling has led me to experience the reality of the world in its rawest form. I have pedaled along the world’s highest elevated highways (Karakorum and Pamir Highways), hiked through other worldly jungles with the sounds of howling animals blasting in my ears, been scorched by the unforgiving deserts of Oman and Uzbekistan while being food and water deprived, inhaled the fumes of overpopulated cities as the black dust that accumulated around my tear ducts created a dirty, black eyeliner. I have seen, felt and tasted the beauty of Mother Nature and deeply understand the importance of taking care of her. As a result of my worldly experiential education, I have made it my life’s mission to do my best to take care of all sentient being’s mother.

It was due time to apply my mission of being a good steward of the earth to my everyday life back in South Korea. One of my favorite pastimes in Korea is using my two feet as transportation for days on end while chatting up folks from the countryside. Pots of fermented bean paste in grass fields, the smell of drying anchovies in the summer sunlight, stories from elderly folks who witnessed the peninsula’s great transformation from a poor and ravaged land to a prosperous, booming economy fascinate me beyond comprehension. 

This time it would be different. Now it was time for me to deliver an important message as a global citizen living in this land of rich history and cultural heritage. I had my poster ready and spent two hours filling in the letters with multicolored markers. It was like working on an elementary school project. This child of Mother Earth had a bold mission. My stash of papers were all printed out in Korean, telling people the actions they need to take in order to do their part to combat climate change and be good stewards of the world. I emphasized two main points in the printed handouts- eating habits and consumer behavior.

My key points were as follows-

-Cows must consume 8 kilograms of vegetables in order to gain 500 grams of body weight. Raising animals for food consumes more than half of all water used in the United States. It takes 9,500 liters of water to produce 500 grams of meat but only 95 liters of water to produce 500 grams of wheat.  Therefore, eating 500 grams of beef consumes as much water as taking a shower for two and a half hours.

Producing just one hamburger uses enough fossil fuel to drive a small car 40 kilometers (The distance from Hoeksoek Dong to Osan). Of all raw materials and fossil fuels used in the United States, more than one-third are devoted to raising animals for food.

-To grow the cotton and manufacture a pair of cotton jeans it requires 2,000 gallons (7,570 liters) of water (this does not include the water used while washing the jeans over the time period when you own them.) This is more than the weight of a small airplane or helicopter.

-A typical pig factory generates the same amount of raw waste as a city of 12,000 people. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, raising animals for food is the number-one source of water pollution.

-Of all agricultural land in the United States, 87 percent is used to raise animals for food. That’s 45 percent of the total land area in the United States. About 1 million square kilometers (a land mass the size of Egypt) of forest have been destroyed to create space to produce feed for animals raised for food.

-The meat industry is directly responsible for 85 percent of all soil erosion in the United States. More than 80 percent of the corn grown and more than 95 percent of the oats are fed to livestock. The world’s cattle alone consume a quantity of food equal to the caloric needs of 8.7 billion people—more than the entire human population on Earth.

-According to the Worldwatch Institute, “Roughly 40 percent of grain produced in the world is fed to livestock, poultry, or fish; decreasing consumption of these products, especially of beef, could free up massive quantities of grain and reduce pressure on land.

       I was so thrilled to hit the road and deliver my message. I spent two to three hours per day after work studying Korean and practiced all the scientific words until my head felt like it was about to split open and my throat was hoarse and sandpaper-dry. All my travel education motivated me to finally do something. The lion inside of me needed to come out. Everything I had worked for to this day came to a pinnacle. I was standing up for what I believe in while doing a good deed for society. It was my turn to pay back our Mother Earth and spread a message of peace to the local people while doing it. Walking and talking were the main goals of this trip and I was more psyched up than a kid who drank ten cans of Red Bull right before final exams. 

    How would people respond? Being from the other side of the world, people could tell me to go home and deliver my message within the borders of my own country. I had to make people understand that we have to reach beyond the limits of artificial lines drawn on maps and come together to solve the greatest problem of our times. It felt like an Olympic sprinter mistook my heart for a treadmill and was about to bring home a world record. Stomp. Stomp. Stomp. It will all be okay. This is your destiny. Now is the time and if you don’t do this you will regret it forever.

    My friend Jared and I stepped out into the heat and grabbed our signs with our sweat-caked fingers. I held up my my cardboard poster high in the air with one hand and pointed at it with the other while yelling “jin hwang geong jeok in selg hwal hap shee da.” (Let’s live in an environmentally friendly way). Cars honked. Children rolled down their windows flashing their dimples and smooth-skinned cheeks. A wrinkle-faced grandfather showed us his gap-toothed smile while giving us a thumbs-up sign. A cute woman with way too much red lipstick yelled “fighting” (An English word used in the Korean language meaning “you can do it”). Nervousness vanished and only excitement intoxicated my brain and left me giddy. 

    Overall, reactions were great and people supported our mission. In restaurants along the way, many locals paid for our dinner and gave us offers of help whenever we needed it. We slept on the beach listening to the sounds of waves crashing along the South Sea and crept into dreamland while inhaling the salty humid air.

    It was Liberation Day. On August 15th Korea celebrates its independence from the decades-long Japanese occupation. My friend and I needed liberation from the dehydration, the rank stench emitting from our pores, and penny-sized blisters on our toes. We approached a fishing village as the sea breeze cooled us off from the sweltering climate. In the distance, a loud muffled voice filled the airwaves. “There has to be something big going on there. Let’s check it out,” Jared and I said while picking up our pace. The sounds of a festival lurked ahead of us and fed us with the zest needed to carry on.

    A few minutes later, we literally and figuratively stumbled upon a soccer game in a small village in the Masan area. The MC’s voice echoed through the air, detailing every pass, fancy dribbling maneuver, and shot on goal. The crowd screamed in suspense as one player fired a ball that ricocheted off the top goal post and slammed into an empty seat in the bleachers. After spending so many days walking through sporadically populated rice fields and beach towns, this was the most people in one place we had witnessed in a few days. There were way too many people in attendance compared to our rural surroundings. Perhaps the soccer game was the only major event happening within a one hundred football field radius  What a perfect opportunity to spread my message. I need that microphone. I crept up to the announcer and flashed my sign at him during a timeout.

    “Ney. Sam boon man duel eel key yo.” (Okay. I will give you ten minutes.) 

    Here was my big chance to grab the mic in front of a big crowd of soccer fans. My heart pounded and I jumped up and down to get myself psyched up to project my words clearly throughout the stadium. This trip took on a new meaning now and I had a chance to connect with one hundred people at the same time. For the past few days, we struck up conversations with groups of two or three people, but this was a whole different animal. One with sharp teeth and claws making me knees shake in its presence.

    Come on now. You are a professor. Your job is to share your knowledge and experiences with the world. This is what you were born to do. It shouldn’t matter what language your words are in. You have been pounding vocabulary and grammar rules into your head for the past several years. Step up to the microphone and tell everyone what they need to hear. Their lives will be better for it. Your life will be better for it. You will never forget this moment.

    My nerves faded away and I turned to the crowd and began to speak. My words came out clearly in rapid fire Korean. I spit out statistic after statistic and told onlookers the story of our walking journey, while Jared roamed the field below flashing his sign everywhere. Fragmented Korean sentences, pronunciation blunders, filler words and awkward pauses. It didn’t matter anymore. My mind became clear and ears rang as my words echoed through the liquid-soaked summer air. Before I knew it, the crowd began to applaud and the master of ceremonies signaled for me to finish up. 

    No applause. Little reaction. I stepped down from the stage and walked through the outskirts of the stadium as no one paid me any mind. Well then, it looks like my effort did not get through to the crowd. At least I gave myself a new comfort zone challenge and took action in the face of fear, nervousness and mental tension. A few steps later, watermelon armed wrinkled women waved me over to cool off in the shade and began shoving the fruit into my face. The normal interrogation began- age, workplace, marital status, hometown. I was more than accustomed to the questions. A look of astonishment filled one of the woman’s eyes.  

    “There is a kid here who attends that school. Where is Minseok?” she asked the crowd. 

   A tan kid wearing knee-high white socks and a bright red soccer jersey dashed in my direction, pushing people out of his path as if he were an ambulance worker coming to help a heart attack victim. The boy grabbed my hand with so much vigor that it nearly crushed my wrist. 

    “I am friend Hyeonook. He taking your class. My name Minseok.I calling Hyeonook now.”

    A few seconds later Hyeonook got on the line and we were face chatting it up. Hyeonook’s face lit up with laughter-produced redness as his friend passed me the phone. 

    “Wow! Georgie! Minseok my best friend. You walking there is so fantastic. You having fun Minseok. I miss you Georgie!”

    My former student was in utter disbelief that I was way out there in the village where his friend grew up. What are the chances a guy like me would have such an encounter a five hour bus ride outside of Seoul? 

    Minseok invited Jared and I to his parents’ fish restaurant, which was originally closed for business during the holiday. We plopped our sweaty bodies at one of the ankle-high tables and threw down our bags on the floor. Finally, a middle aged man flipped on the lights and ran into the kitchen. The man looked like a fifty year old version of Minseok. The same wavy hair, forehead structure, and disarming smile was a delight to encounter twice.

    “What kind of food you liking? We have so much fish. You liking fish? My father make food.” 

    A few minutes later, Jared and I were surrounded by small white plates of freshly made food. There must have been at least fifteen dishes filled to the brim with fermented vegetables. Stained red cube-shaped cabbage, paper-thin seaweed soaked in a salty clear liquid, bright orange sliced tuna- tender, raw and succulent- ready to slither its way into the taster’s palate. True craftsmanship. 

    Minsoek and his family glared at the two guests with curiosity, intrigue, and pride as we stuffed our faces full of Korea’s best tasting restaurant food. Their pure innocence allured me. Everytime we took a bite we complimented the chef. “This is the best meal I have ever had in Korea.” Minseok and his father’s cheeks turned to a light red hue of embarrassment as we lavished on the praise. Korean humility. One often downplays or denies compliments and praise in South Korea in order to appear humble in the presence of others. Minseok and his father remained silent, smiled and continued to observe our enthusiastic chopstick shoveling. Their innocent look of satisfaction will forever be etched in my memories. This was true hospitality and we were the recipients. What a great feeling to stand up for what you believe in and be rewarded by a meal made with all the workings of a masterpiece. This heartwarming moment made all the worry and effort worth it.

How to Always Receive a Discount

After making so many great memories on my walking trips in the countryside, I was determined to bring my message forward in everyday life. A true global citizen walks and breathes his mission every second on this planet. My next target location was my own backyard- Daebangdong, Seoul. I morphed into a talking machine campaigning for a cleaner, more hospitable earth everywhere I went. After all, if we take care of our Mother, she will take care of us.

After so many successful interactions in the countryside, the logical next step was to take a strong stand in the capital city. People in Seoul are some of the busiest and hardest working folks on the planet. It is often hard to pin down friends for a meeting date due to their busy schedules, especially when preparing for an important exam or job interview. Competition makes everyone work harder and drive their economy further up on the worldwide stage. Would busy Seoullites even care about what I had to say? Or perhaps their high education level would make them appreciate my efforts even more. My heart filled with vitality as I imagined myself stomping around my neighborhood while telling others what was on my mind. 

My first order of action was to voice my opinion on plastic usage at the local supermarket I frequent, Daebang Discount Market. Plastic bags are used without question when weighing and pricing produce at every shopping venue I have ever visited in South Korea. I refuse to buy anything packaged in plastic and tell all the store employees exactly how I felt about their standard practice of wastefulness. 

Shoulders back, neck straight, chest out. I beamed with confidence now that I repeated my monologue hundreds of times in the rural areas. My voice deep and loud, eye contact fiercer and more intense, my stare failed to waver as the employee reached for plastic as he weighed my sweet potatoes. 

“Whoa! Hold it right there. I don’t use plastic.”

“No plastic? What am I supposed to do them?”

“Please stick the price sticker right on the sweet potatoes. I brought my own bag. There is no need to pollute the earth.”

“If I do that then my machine will get dirty and it will create so much more work for me. I have to use the plastic bag.”

“What about Korea? Have you noticed that yellow dust and fine particulate reports are now on the news every day? When I first came here nine years ago that was not the case. Isn’t it a human right to be able to breathe clean air? Are we really helping this situation by using plastic bags? I will buy my vegetables somewhere else if you really insist on dirtying the world.”

The words fired from my mouth without hesitation as my glare became more and more intense. My eyes widened through my wire-rimmed glasses, my shoulder-width stance and slightly bent knees had me ready to pounce on anyone that dared challenge me on this one. Come and convince me that plastic bags are good for the world. Try it. I want to hear what the naysayers have to say. I was not simply a guy trying to break the harmony that is so intricate to the Confucius philosophy and Korean spirit. As someone thousands of kilometers away from my place of birth, I still have to breath dirty air everyday in my neighborhood. It is my duty to voice my opinions. Surely, there were plenty of citizens ready to back me up on my stance. Discussion and conflict can only result in a positive shift for the world. Plastic bag culture must change and I was ready to start the revolution in this supermarket.

A hush took over the store as only the blaring K-pop loudspeakers and humming of refrigeration machines remained. The man pondered on my argument for several seconds while twitching his neck slightly to the side and rolling his eyes up to the ceiling. 

Two short haired women in their seventies watched the whole interaction go down with dropped jaws of curiosity and astonished eyes that enhanced the leathery creases on their foreheads. Maybe the two ladies had never witnessed a light-skinned guy from North America speaking with such conviction in their mother tongue, or perhaps they had never seen anyone take a stance on plastic before. Either way, I had an audience of two. All the better if it was ten thousand. I wished I would have been in a stadium of spectators that day with a spotlight, LCD screens and high definition speakers to broadcast the discussion to the masses. The more people that hear about the broken culture of plastic bag use the better.

The worker’s puzzled expression never floundered as he shook his head back and forth and whispered something under his breath that was too faint for my non-native ears to understand. The man stuck the price sticker on the sweet potatoes and then gently scooped them up into my cart. Compliance, victory and satisfaction!  

Over the course of the next few weeks, the worker warmed up to the idea a customer who refused to use plastic bags. Time and time again, I trained him and before long he came to respect my controversial shopping habits. 

He quickly observed that I did not purchase any meat or processed items. My cart was always full with fruits, vegetables, rice, and beans. 

“Wow! I could never eat the way you do. That is amazing.”

“I am simply doing my best to stay healthy and protect the earth.”

He quickly picked up on this and we had several productive discussions about my eating habits. He was surprised to know about the large effect the meat industry has on climate change and admitted that it would be too hard for him to make the same personal sacrifices I do. From that moment on, his attitude morphed from one of skepticism, bewilderment and confusion to respect, admiration and appreciation. Thirty to forty percent discounts on all of my groceries became a regular treat. I pay $6 to $7 for every $10 dollars of food I buy. If the man is in a particularly good mood, sometimes I even receive massive discounts of 50 percent on my food and acquire extra free pieces of fruit as a gift. Everyday has become a discount party whenever I go shopping at Daebang Discount Market. The employee changed his views on my shopping and eating habits and now helps me do my best for our Mother Earth. Indeed it pays in various forms to stand up for what you believe in.

Lesson Learned- People Respect You More When You Take a Stand

Often times others are afraid to voice their opinions and take a stand for something they believe in. Social pressure, fear of judgment, and lack of confidence are strong impediments to speaking up in everyday situations. The desire to be accepted by others often overtakes the urge to speak one’s mind. Potential criticism from our peers can be haunting for some. Therefore, the easiest action is to stay silent. The safest road is the one with the least resistance. The one with least resistance leads to little personal growth and unfulfilled potential. Without growth one dies. The key to feeling alive and flourishing is to grow and reflect through challenges and difficult times. 

If our thoughts and feelings stay repressed, inner turmoil may result, which can stay with one for decades. Repressed inner conflict may manifest itself through other areas in life such as passive aggressive behavior, depression and sadness. For example, unexpressed anger manifests itself on the surface as sadness. 

I experienced this first hand during my meditation practice as repressed conflicts and emotions often come to light once again. Sitting still with my eyes closed can make the mind go wild and events I have not thought about for years resurface during each passing moment. Through my meditative experiences, I have come to the conclusion that the most important thing in my life is to stay true to myself. The only failure in life is not staying true to your beliefs. I must live and die for my truths or else my soul will slowly become weak and eventually reach a deathlike state. That deathlike state is a worthless existence and is the equivalent to being buried six feet under the ground or burned to ashes.

The person who lives out their personal truth is one others trust more easily. Their peers know exactly where their boundaries are and respect them without question. This is the way one becomes more magnetic and polar. Those who share your truth become drawn to you and you will always have a tight bond that is difficult to separate. Others who oppose your truth will be repelled and distance themselves. You naturally become a leader and role model to people who do not know themselves and are curious about your path in life. They may share your values, but lack the courage to stand up and take action. Due to your transparency, people will try to help you along the way because they find you trustworthy and charismatic. Charisma is nothing more than making one’s intentions transparent and being consistent to one’s values.

During my walking trip and experiences grocery shopping, it became apparent that I was respected simply because my thoughts, words, and actions aligned with one another. I was literally talking the talk and walking the walk. An intentional life can only be lived when one’s thoughts, words, and actions become one. When this is clear to others, respect comes very naturally. People become drawn in and fascinated by your path in life and try to help you any way they can. This is why I receive discounts at the grocery store and was treated to a full course restaurant meal during a holiday in the villages of Masan. People are good at reading others and know when they find someone living and breathing their truth. Everything you do in life must be aligned with your mission and truth. Settling for anything less will only lead to inner conflict that can send your mind into a tailspin. Life is too short to live outside the boundaries of your truth. Find your mission and live by it and you are bound to be successful at anything you do.

Discussion Questions-

  1. How did Cho Chunsam become interested in the preserving the environment?
  2. Describe how eating habits relate to environmental issues.
  3. How much meat do you eat in an average week? Would you like to change anything about your eating habits? Why?
  4. How often do you go shopping for new clothes? Do you ever stop and think about how your consumer behavior effects the environment?
  5. How did Cho Chunsam get a free meal in Masan?
  6. Describe how Cho Chunsam gets discounts while grocery shopping.
  7. Describe how you can easily gain the respect of other people.
  8. What is your mission in life? Are you living by that mission?
  9. Describe a time when you stood up for something you believed in.

This Post Has 100 Comments

  1. [翻译] Read your article carefully by heart.English is poor so recorded many words and sentences, learned a lot. I am deeply moved by your love for life and the idea of protecting the earth. It is really a profound article. If everyone does it like you, the world will be a better place. When the life of my exchange student is over, I will continue to pay attention to you blog and pass on your ideas to Chinese people when I return to China.春三先生,非常真诚地对您说,非常荣幸做您的学生。

    1. Thank you for your kind words and I am also happy you are in our class. See you soon!

  2. By reading your article, I could reflect on myself about my consume behavior. Also, I figured out how much I was indifferent about the environment. From now on, I will try my best to keep environment safe. Thank you for writing a good article.

    1. Thanks for your comment!

  3. i really respect you that you planned all of these walking trips. i’d be happy if i could do these experiences someday like you. Also, I think that your handwriting is prettier than me.

    1. Thank you! I am sure your handwriting is much better.

  4. I read your article well. While reading this article, I realized how much Chunsam cared about the environment and loved it. I think Chunsam is great because I know it’s not easy to get around and let people know about environmental protection. After reading this, I have come back to my life about the environment and I have decided to work harder to protect the environment. In addition, the coincidence while traveling was truly amazing.

    1. Thank you sir! Lets protect the environment together. Alone nothing will be changed!

  5. This article is very shocking to me. I think we should take care of this place where we are born and die.

    1. Yes! Lets take care of the earth together!

  6. So amazing to hear this meaningful talking trip. I can feel that you really love the planet we’re living on, and was impressed by the effort of you to help the planet.

  7. The fact that i knew while reading was that Jeorge lovesd earth. The most impressive part is the fact that they packed watermelon. I imagined that pack would fit too well with Jeorge!!

    1. Yes! Watermelon is very great and cools me down during the summer!

  8. wow, i respect your mind and way.

  9. I think UN should give you a gold medal 🙂 Actually I don’t have a great interest about the Earth and our territory until now. Now I will do my best to save Mother Nature like you. Thank you for your lesson.

  10. After reading this article. I realized that it is very important to have faith in my mind and follow the faith I have.
    I was so impressed because you followed your faith in an active way, and everybody respected you. Actually, my role model is Jane Goodall, a environmentalist, so I went to see her speech in Seoul about 4 years ago. Your article reminds me of her speech. She had a strong faith like you, and she said about the methane gas problem (caused by cow), too. This article made me think again about the Mother Nature, and I decided that I’ll do my best to save the environment.

  11. After I read the article by George, I am ashamed of myself. I think I’m a contradictory man who say justice and truth but didn’t really do what I saying. This article reminds me. I read this article with high concentration. Thank you for giving this high quality article!

    1. I am glad you enjoyed the article! Lets work hard together for justice and truth!

  12. Now I totally understand why you do not eat hamburgers and turn on the air conditioner in summer. I hope more and more people read this article so that they can learn how valuable the nature is.
    I admire your mindset!

  13. I really liked this story. I even recommended to my Chinese friend!

    1. Great! I hope we can all take action together to make the planet a clean place for everyone to live.

  14. 사랑해요 춘삼

    1. Haha!

  15. Your motto of ife is just so impressive! Plus the statistics about grain consumption of livestock and more are shocking. I got to know why have you become a vegan!

  16. Although we know what we should to do, it’s not easy to take action. I am so impressed about your mind and the project you did (and will continue). Through this article, I have thought about how my behaivor would affect the environment and what can I do to care my planet in my daily life. Lastly, thank you for sharing your great experience!

  17. Everyone knows living for earth is very impornat for future. But it is difficult to live without disposable products. In that sense, Chunsam is amazing!!
    And i agree alone nothing will be changed, so I decided to join little by little.:)

    1. Lets do it together! Team Cho!

  18. In fact, I didn’t have much interested in our environment. But through your article, I thought I want to protect our environment for our future.

  19. I think it is fabulous that you planned all the long-way trip. Also it was very useful to know the discount tip. I hope to travel like you someday….Feeling completely free and
    learning important matters which we frequently forget about(harmony, environment) during my adventure.

  20. It makes me have a shame because I’ve promised to not use any disposable cup when I drink a beberage with myself and I’m reading this article holding the disposable cup. I could learn many things after reading it and I promised to keep our precious environment again to myself!

  21. I can feel many things in this column. You spoke to people about your stance on the earth and the environment. I think I cannot do like you. So, you showed great courage.

    1. Thanks you for your comment and we can all do something for the earth and the environment whether it is not eating meat one day per week or talking to our friends and family about the issue. Also, you have great courage for expressing your thoughts and opinions in the ChungAng Herald. Keep up the good work!

  22. very nice post, i certainly love this website, keep on it

    1. Thanks for the support!

  23. Hey! Would you mind if I share your blog with my myspace group? There’s a lot of folks that I think would really appreciate your content. Please let me know. Thanks

    1. Sure! Thanks for the support!

  24. Hi there! Do you use Twitter? I’d like to follow you if that would be ok. I’m undoubtedly enjoying your blog and look forward to new posts.

  25. Hello! I just would like to give a huge thumbs up for the great info you have here on this post. I will be coming back to your blog for more soon.

  26. After reading this article, I thought I should live with my mission. Professor trying to get people to know his mission.
    I felt that the part where professor’s presented your opinions correctly was the greatest part of the reading.
    and I am ashamed of myself. Because, I usually use plastic a lot and eat meat often.
    But, I decided I should reduce the use of plastic and I should be interested in the environment.

  27. Now can I fully understand why you don’t eat meat. I like to eat meat, but I’m going to cut back on my meat intake. Also, I was very impressed with your trip to Korea. Especially, I’m surprised that you know the history of economic growth on the peninsula. I learned a lot about the environment from this article. Thank you!

    1. Thanks for your comments Ms. Hong and I am glad you enjoyed the article.

  28. It is easy to think, but It is always hard to practice. I’m really impressed about your activities for environment!!
    I can feel your passion for meaningful life.

  29. I found out why the professor is eating vegetables. And it was cool to try to save the Earth. I also admired the practical way of making posters and giving speeches in front of many people.

    1. Lets save the world together Ms. Cho!

  30. First of all, I think you’re really great! The reason is that many people living in Korea, including myself, do not realize the environment seriousness, but you have realized the seriousness and have done a lot to convey an important message as a global citizen. After reading this article, I was inspired about the environment and I thought that I would like to practice as like you.

    1. Thanks banjangneem. Lets help save the environment together.

  31. Recognizing that there is a problem can be easy. But I think it is not easy to act directly to solve it. So first I want to applaud your courage.
    And I thought that there would be nothing that one person can do to solve environmental problems, but after I read this, my mind changed and if I can do something for Mother Nature in my life I would also like to do some actions too (even if it is such a small thing)

  32. I was impressed during reading this writings. I can think deeply about my previous behaviors because of this writings. I will act with more care in the future.

  33. Thank you for your article. I was able to read your article and understand your experience and your thoughts about it. I support your idea that I should agree with your thoughts and actions, and I will try to be that person.

  34. Through the article, I could look back on myself and reflect on myself whether I had lived a life of love for the Earth. Looking back on the past days when I thought only of myself rather than saving the Earth, I could promise to be someone who could reflect and join in saving the Earth. The article also showed that Chunsam teacher loved the Earth not only by saying he loved it, but by doing it. The challenging and practical Chunsam teacher was wonderful and respectful. Among his words, “Find your mission and live your life as it is” is most impressive.

    1. Ms. Lee! I hope you can find your mission and live it!

  35. Your thoughts about the health of the Earth came to me very impressively. George, although your activities and messages have been scorched with little practice, it will soon reach out to people with a loud sound. You’re such a cool person!

    1. Thank you for your kind words Mr. Kang!

  36. Hi! This article was so interesting to me. I also interested in protecting the environment. But I didn’t practice to protect our earth, just thinking ‘Oh.. I have to clean our hometown..earth is aching..’. Because it is very hard to practice, for example, do not use plastic things, or eating meat few times etc.. I also have a class name ” Environment and Human” in our school. When I heard a news or data, fact about Korea’s environment problem, (for example, a fine dust), I was very surprised and sad. We need to protect our Earth for our hometown, and our children.

    The article, and your behavior was very nice George!

    1. Ms. Kim! Yes I am also sad to experience the environmental problems. We must all change our actions and claim responsibility as global citizens.

  37. OMG! I didn’t know that eating meat would destroy the environment like this!! I love meat so much, but I desperately felt the need to change this diet. Despite it will be hard, I’ll try slowly and steadily. And in Masan, your courage to speech was great. I really respect you as a steward of the Earth.

    1. Mr. Yun! Yes, only one day with no meat will help the earth! Lets do it together!

  38. I read your article well. “Find your mission and live by it and you are bound to be successful at anything you do.” That sounds really good! After reading Professor Chunsam’s travel stories, I could reflect on myself about my behaviors that was indifferent to the environment. I want to active in protecting the Earth! Thank you for your good writing.

  39. It is not easy to be a man of action, but you are one, and it’s amazing. This website really makes me think about how I should live together with mother earth…

  40. As I listened to your class, I knew that you were very interested in nature, but after reading this article I became more confident in your beliefs. It became a turning point for my eating habits and my consumer life. It is a awesome post!!ㅡ!!

    1. Hello Mr. Bak! I am happy to hear you are at a turning point! Lets save the earth together!

  41. I respect your efforts for the environment and attitude to your truths. I thought I was interested in the environment but after reading this, I realized my efforts were very poor. I became to think I want to be a person who is not ashamed of himself.

    1. Thanks Jooyoung! Lets put in more effort together and the world will be a cleaner place!

  42. I was really impressed when I read your article with concentration. I think you’re doing something that isn’t easy for others to do. I respect that, and I will carry out what you have claimed. For example, I will eat less meat and use eco-friendly products. Regardless of whether you are a teacher, it is really cool to practice this behavior. I hope you and me keep this mindset in the future.

    1. Thanks Youchoon. Lets be eco-friendly together!

  43. I remember you are vegetarian. It was all for our Mother Earth. You are doing really great job! And I think this experiences were worthwile and exciting.

  44. After reading this article, I was really ashamed because , in daylife I use so much energy and make trashes. I used plastic cups and I like to turn on air conditioner..and so on. So after reading this, I changed my thinking and from now on I will also start to protect our earth by doing small things!

    1. Yes! Lets preserve the earth together!

  45. Actually, my dream is to be an eco-friendly chemical engineering technician and your article totally touched my mind. I lost some of my enthusiasm of taking actions in order to protect the earth due to joyful college life, but now I feel like I got in track. Thanks for reminding me my goal. And I really loved the way you changed your close ones!! Your constant feedbacks and true passion worked and i now get the courage that it may work to my ones too! I will try, and let you know whether mine change. Haha

    1. Ms. Lee! Yes I hope you can get back on track with your goal. Please let me know how it works out and remember you can lead by example!

  46. This post really makes me think again about preserving nature. Who knew it takes so much to make a single hamburger?

    1. Thanks banjangneem. Lets preserve nature together!

  47. It is good that effort of cho chun sam to save earth. the most impressive part is that teacher speak to MASAN people in soccer stadium!

    1. Thanks Mr. Cha! It was a memorable time in Masan! Lets save the earth together!

  48. After reading this article, I reflected on myself. Lately, I experienced vegan food and used a public bike-sharing system. But, I think I’ve lived in comfort ways instead of thinking the influence of my behavior on the earth. From now on, I’ll stop complaining about the bad air in Korea without doing something for the earth. Also I’ll try to change my diet which was focus on meat.

  49. After reading this article, I reflected on myself. Lately, I experienced vegan food and used a public bike-sharing system. But, I think I’ve lived in comfort ways instead of thinking the influence of my behavior on the earth. From now on, I’ll stop complaining about the bad air in Korea without doing something for the earth. Also I’ll try to change my diet which was focus on meat.

  50. I could understand why you became an environmentalist. It’s a good article to think about my relationship with the Earth. As one of the Koreans, i would like to express my gratitude to you because you claimed protect the nature of Korea while traveling all over Korea. Also, personally, the phrase ‘People Response You More When You Take a Stand’ was impressive. I hope i also have right stand and have a good influence on society.

  51. After reading this article, I reflect on myself. Lately, I experienced vegan food and used a public bike-sharing system. But, I think I’ve lived in comfort ways instead of thinking the influence of my behavior on the earth. From now on, I’ll stop complaining about the bad air in korea without doing something for the earth. Also I’ll try to change my diet which was focus on meat.

  52. Thanks for coming to Korea.I’m proud to be your student,

    1. Thank you for your kind words! I am proud to have you as a student!

  53. The professor who is trying for the Earth is so cool! Good reading!

  54. After reading this article, I reflected on myself. Lately, I experienced vegetarian food and used a public bike-sharing system. But, I think I’ve lived in comfort ways instead of thinking the influence of my behavior on the earth. From now on, I’ll stop complaining about the bad air in Korea without doing something for the earth. Also I’ll try to change my diet which was focus on meat.

    1. Yes! Every little thing will help!

  55. I am so impressed by your passion for environmental protection. This post makes me think about my consumption habits.

    1. Thanks! Lets work together to make the earth a clean place!

  56. It’s so amazing to recognize the problem while traveling and put it into practice. I really respect your attitude. Also, it was impressed that the Earth is suffered from us due to a lot of meat that we consume. After reading this article, I realized I have to do something for the environment.

    1. Yes lets do something together!

  57. It was impressing that you persuaded the market clerk persistently and finally he accepted your belief even give you a discount for homage. Also your attitude that admitting the difficulty to require him to sacrifice the same as you do was touching. I think holding belief, converting idea into action and respecting the difference are all very hard to do. It was a great story!

  58. Actually when i heard your experience of traveling, i’d surprised. As me, traveling was just a fun game and i never think about the things that i’d learnd from trip.
    I respect your solid belief. Thanks to this article, i can think about myself seriously.

  59. While reading this article, I found that changing to a vegetable-based diet and reducing plastic use greatly help protect the environment. Above all, I’m proud that you took the lead in protecting the environment by making relevant handouts and doing speeches in Korea. I will also try to protect the Earth. I will be ‘brave’ of this! Thank you.

  60. Actually, I know meat is not good for Earth, and I thinked how to protect our planet. But I never acted my thought. After reading this article, I was ashamed because Mr.Chunsam is acting for Earth. I realized that thinking without acting is nothing. From now on, I’ll do my best for Earth by doing recycle or riding public transportation.

  61. Reading this article, I thought that I should change my diet to vegetable based diet through various statistics and reduce the use of plastic. Above all, it was admirable that you first made environmental protection handouts and speeches in Korea. I will do something helpful for the Earth. I’ll be brave of that, too. Thank you.

  62. Sir, you enlightened me to think of becoming a vegetarian and taking some actions to reduce my carbon consume as much as a individual can do. And also I can see an attitude of life through your words and behaviors that l often dream for. Educational!

    1. Thanks for the nice words. Yes! Together we can do something to keep this world beautiful and clean.

  63. I was shocked because I didn’t know that eating beef and porks causes a lot of environmental problems. You are such a amazing person because you are a practical person. Thank you for noticing me that eating habits are also affect our earth badly and I will think about my eating style and find a better way for earth.

  64. I’m really surprised for you to do your best to save the Earth. Until now I think I didn’t do something special to save Mother Nature. Just for a small thing, I used to feel tiresome to do that. But after meeting you, knowing you and reading this story, I fell ahamed about my careless life about environment. And I want to make a small change in my life for the Earth.maybe it is impossible to become a perfectly vegitarian but I will try to reduce my consumption of meats.
    I will stop thinking that just only I can’t change the world. I try to think changing me first will be a small change for environment to be better, even not worse.
    And I really respect you beacuse you practice your value in real world.

  65. I envy you because your life is quite different from my 20 years life. After reading your diary, I knew you are purposeful and you are enjoying your life. I am not an active environmentalist like you, after the big exam I am preparing, I want to live my life like you, doing what I want!(not just worrying my future and etc.)

  66. While i read this article, i’m so suprise and respect that you did exactly what you thought and wanted to do and you really did well. Actually, i recently felt that i lacked the ability to do what i thought. After i read the phrase in article, “One’s thoughts, words and actions become one.”, then i was inspired and reflect by myself.

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