Ecocentricity Blog: Four Simple Letters

Dec 20, 2016 9:00 AM ET

Ray’s environmental epiphany and all his efforts over the last 17 years of his life are best described by the word “love.” Love for his company and its employees. Love for the Earth. Love for his family.


The L-Bomb. Four simple letters. The word can ruin a relationship if said too soon, and it can lead to blissful years of happiness when said at the perfect time. Children hear it whispered by their parents while drifting off to sleep. Musicians hear it screamed at them from adoring fans in the crowd. Oh, what a complex relationship we have with the word “love.”

I’m not sure how the societal rules around using the word developed. It makes perfect sense that we use it to indicate affection for other people. That part I get. But somehow it can also describe our relationship with cars, jeans, and weather conditions. I mean, isn’t that a little weird? The word can simultaneously be the solemn bedrock of human relationships and also the descriptor of a person’s feelings towards Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey ice cream.

Interestingly though, there’s one arena where the word is strictly taboo – namely, the world of business.

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Valerie Bennett
Ray C. Anderson Foundation
+1 (770) 317-5858