I think the title of Stephanie Buck’s piece says it all: “The natives of Easter Island found paradise, and then destroyed it.”
I don’t know what it is, but Rapa Nui (aka Easter Island) has always fascinated me. Probably the only thing that the average person could tell you about the most isolated civilization on Earth is that it’s home to some huge, creepy-looking stone statues called moai. Apart from that, nada.
Yet as @StephMBuck points out in her post, there’s actually an extremely valuable lesson to be learned from the mistakes that the island’s original Polynesian inhabitants, also referred to as Rapa Nui, made over the centuries. Lest we forget, it would seem, it won’t be long before the rest of the planet has been ravaged environmentally and we’re reduced to becoming cannibals.
Buddha forbid, after all, that the most insulting thing we could one day utter to each other be what the Rapa Nui of Rapa Nui say in Rapa Nui: “The flesh of your mother sticks between my teeth.”