Compiled and Edited

Robert Jan "Roy" van de Hoek, RC
Ballona Institute
322 Culver Blvd., Suite 317
Playa del Rey, California 90293
(310) 821-9045

Robert "Roy" van de Hoek

It's been 10 years now since the definition of CYCLES given by Ernest Callenbach first appeared in his “pocket-guide” called Ecology. The definition is provided below so that the reader of the SUSTAINABILITY definition will have the context of the meaning of Sustainable CYCLES. Please read the definition of CYCLES below.

Ernest Callenbach

For the past several centuries our industrial system has been taking massive quantities of resources and transforming them into salable products, which are then disposed of as garbage - a one-way, one-time-use process. This is a short-term strategy. It cannot continue indefinitely as nature's processes do. Life's strategy, which has endured for billions of years, is to make repeated use of essential substances present on the planet only in fixed amounts, which go round and round again in cycles, closely coupled with the actions of living organisms. Humans cannot change the amount of these essential substances present on the planet; we can only learn to aid in their efficient recycling.

Of life's cycles, these are the most fundamental:

The WATER cycle provides the supportive surroundings in which life can exist. The bodies of all living beings are largely water.

The NITROGEN cycle ... [to be compiled completely at a later time].

The CARBON cycle

The SULFUR cycle


The acronym CHNOPS [pronounce the C as S] is a handy way to remember that all organisms contain fixed proportions of the elements carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygene, phosphorus, and sulfur - a powerful indication of the close evolutionary connections between all forms of life.

We also apply term "cycles"to astronomically determined events that repeat themselves periodically, often with dramatic effects on the rhythms of life. For many beings who live along the sea, the ceaseless, twice-daily ebb and flow of the tides brings food, removes wastes, and provides the interminent moisture and drynessneeded for feeding or protections. We humans wake at dawn, are active during the day, and get sleepy after nightfall - though many other mammals do the opposite. Organisms have "internal clocks" that regulate important daily cycles in body chemistry and behavior. Agriculture, gardening, sports, and many other human activities are shaped by the alternation of warm spring and summer periods of growth with chilly fall and winter periods of rest - or, near the equator, wet and dry seasons. Pyschological states are strongly influences by these cyclels; we ritualize them inways that all of life is cyclical.

Robert "Roy" van de Hoek
CYCLES are very aptly defined by Ernest Callenbach. It entices the reader, at least it does for me, to read further to understand how nature, ecology, and our great planet Earth is wonderful geography of hope.