Edge of Extinction: Last Automated Tweet

The cover article in today’s issue of the Eugene Weekly describes my visit to the city in Oregon last month. At the time, I was nearing the end of my Cascadian speaking tour. Unlike the critics of my work, I was not interviewed for the story. Read the article here.

______

I’ve created a survey to improve the radio show. Please complete it here.
______

McPherson will be interviewed for Revolution Radio at 4:00 p.m. Eastern on Monday, 20 July 2015. To listen live, follow along at Studio A here.
______

Looking for San Francisco Bay Area folks to raise $$$$ to bring Guy to San Francisco. Please contact amyvegan@gmail.com if you are willing to donate towards Guy’s travel here.

Also seeking vegan folks to brainstorm the creation of 100% vegan urban community in or near Portland, Oregon along the light rail line.
______

Those of you seeking a response from me at the NBL Forum will be continue to be disappointed. I’ve never visited. I doubt I will.
______

Catch Nature Bats Last on the radio with Mike Sliwa and Guy McPherson. To catch us live, tune in every Tuesday at 3:00 p.m. Eastern time, or catch up in the archives here. If you prefer the iTunes version, including the option to subscribe, you can click here.
______

Please visit the DONATIONS tab. I’m open to non-monetary donations, subject only to your creativity. For example, I would appreciate your generosity with respect to frequent-flyer miles.
______

McPherson’s latest book is co-authored by Carolyn Baker. The Second, Revised edition of Extinction Dialogs: How to Live with Death in Mind is available. Electronic copy is available here from Amazon.

Tech note, courtesy of mo flow: Random issues have been appearing with posting comments. Sometimes a “Submit Comment” click will return a 404 Page Not Found, or another error, for no apparent reason. To ensure you don’t lose a longer comment, you can right-click select all, and right-click copy, in the comment box before clicking “Submit.” If that hasn’t been done, the comment text will likely still be in the comment box when clicking the back button, or the forward button — depending on the error — on your browser.

Comments 130

  • Yes indeed Guy – the message is spreading; unfortunately, the “action” is not. Perhaps, after a “critical mass” of people (specifically those who can “do something” about it) get on board, we may see some change from the status quo (though I doubt it).

    I read an article yesterday talking about when the trucks stop running, drastic collapse will begin – ie. severe supply chain disruption.

    People want to argue that food shortages aren’t happening yet, despite the drought and storms, flooding and hail, tornados and such.
    They aren’t thinking about the implications (or the root causes) – like sea level rise (which will cut off the food and critical supplies to many countries)and are only looking at the present. They keep thinking that the situation will get better when we’ve seen that it’s only getting worse (especially wrt the Arctic/global economy).

    Thank you for your continuing bravery and honesty in the face of efforts to discredit you or obfuscate your message.

    http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/the-last-days-of-normal-life-in-america

    The Last Days Of ‘Normal Life’ In America

    [ends with]

    The last half of this year (2015) is going to represent a major turning point, and we are moving into hard times unlike anything that America has ever seen before.

    Unfortunately, most of the “sheeple” are going to be completely blindsided by what is coming. They just continue to follow their utterly clueless leaders down a path toward oblivion.

    But the good news is that once the “shaking” starts, many of these “sheeple” will begin to wake up.

    When that happens, who will those “sheeple” turn to for answers?

  • Halfway to 2 C — According to NASA, We Just Blew Past an Ominous Milestone

    https://robertscribbler.com/2015/07/16/halfway-to-2-c-according-to-nasa-we-just-blew-past-an-ominous-milestone/

    [begins]

    2 C.

    It’s the amount of warming past pre-industrial times that the IPCC says we should try to avoid this Century in order to prevent the worst consequences of human-caused climate change. It’s the so-called safe limit, even though there’s nothing really safe about it and we should probably be aiming more for a below 1.5 C target.

    1 C.

    It’s the amount of warming between pre-industrial times and, according to the latest data from NASA, the first half of 2015. In other words, temperatures during the first six months of 2015 are now at least halfway toward freeing some of the nastiest climate monsters in the closet. [please read the rest]

  • thestormcrow,

    Thanks for your lovely post. I remember you used to tell us stories like these from your life before. I’m glad to know that you’re still there.
    This is what I often miss here on NBL: people talking about what they do in the moment, the right thing, as it always is if you put yourself in the background and attend to the need of the Other. That’s real love, the one that will remain. You’ve got that. Thanks for sharing.

    I’m probably assuming a lot but I bet that thestormcrow doesn’t need to read anything at all in order to do what he/she? does. 100 Ohso books taken down from the attic would be a complete waste of time.

    It’s not about saving yourself Mike, it’s about doing what you can now, now, what your heart tells you, not what you get from books telling you about the insights of other spiritual people. That’s a flat experience, nothing to do with life.

    And ulvfugl is not my mentor. I have always gone my own way, never had a mentor, but I found him to be a wise and truly knowledgeable man whose experiences ring true with me. It’s as simple as that.
    He would never call himself a Bodhi or a Zen master, and that’s truly wise. He’s just laugh: Hahahaha

    And there’s no need to apologise about the “German/Nazi thing. I cannot be insulted and have heard this sort of thing many times before. IMO, to feel insulted is an ego-centric emotion/pleasure and something I got over a long time ago. I can recommend it.

    I’m quite OK with you not liking a lot about my “attitude”, don’t give it another thought, I mean that! And please DON’T pray for me, it embarrasses me, and you could avoid that, if you insist on doing something for me just don’t think about me at all.

    This is just my opinion and my personal experience, possibly because I’m not a meat robot, no matter what Robin Datta thinks or knows. He’s been pushing this annoying meat robot thing for a long time, and I’ve always found it quite obscene. What an insight, just because nobody can prove otherwise it’s proof. My unscientific mind boggles.
    Robin, you could try and get off your plinth and be a Mensch for a change. And you’re a doctor….

    ed,
    As a native German speaker, I can assure you that “autist” is not a German word for being a jerk etc.
    Autist, autism (in German Autismus) is simply a modern “Latin” word construction and therefore, just like all other medical terms, it describes a particular condition.

  • I keep coming back to that clip from Newsroom, and how strikingly similar it is to the interview you did with Abby Martin in 2013….

    I think you deserve a writing credit for that episode.

    Or at the very least, a Producer credit.

    🙂

  • Robert Scribbler has a bit of an optimism bias. Preindustrial carbon dioxide was about 280ppm and rose to 334ppm by 1975. Since there’s a forty year lag-time in effect we are now feeling the 1975 level. That’s 54ppm between preindustry and 1975. Between 1975 and 2015 we’ve added roughly another 70ppm and we’re still releasing pyrogens into the environment at an accelerating rate. To hold the line at one degree centigrade we would have to stop all burning of fossil fuels immediately and devise a way to remove 70ppm of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Only the ecoystem can do that and it usually takes many millions of years. And the jackasses in suits continue to try and build yet more conduits between the fossil fuels and the atmosphere even while they entertain thoughts of geoengineering. They’re like a cancer trying to find ways to keep a terminal patient alive so that malignant growth may continue. Well, we won’t be stopping at 1C as Guy has related many times but I suppose a little delusional thinking can sometimes be the best palliative.

  • Yes, more articles about extinction, including human extinction, are appearing in more media outlets.

    Most are still suppressing it in whole or in part.

  • .
    .
    Earth’s Degradation Threatens Major Health Gains: Study

    AFP
    July 15, 2015
    Earth’s Degradation Threatens Major Health Gains: Study
    The dramatic decline of bees has already compromised the quantity and quality of many nutrient-rich crops that the health of women and children depend on. (Photo: Corbis)

    The unprecedented degradation of Earth’s natural resources coupled with climate change could reverse major gains in human health over the last 150 years, according to a sweeping scientific review published late Wednesday.

    “We have been mortgaging the health of future generations to realize economic and development gains in the present,” said the report, written by 15 leading academics and published in the peer-reviewed medical journal The Lancet.

    .

    .
    .
    Looking forward to war, famine, and pestilence.
    .
    .
    Just sitting on this runaway train, staring out the window, with a cat on my lap.
    .
    Sadly, this is what we’ve come to:
    .
    The Voluntary Extinction Movement says:
    “…thou shalt not procreate.”

    The Church of Euthanasia says:
    “Save the planet, kill yourself.”

  • pat,

    What your church says means nothing.

    What your church does says everything.

    Which is nothing.

  • Guy, many thanks for all that you do, and for having this site.

    Re the coverage you got from the Eugene Weekly…
    My take on it, having lived there once….
    No surprise that they would not interview you for your own cover story, but that the opposing voices were interviewed … That paper, like the rest of the town, is controlled by corporations, like big timber, and the chemicals it relies on.

    Back in the 80’s and 90’s, Eugene was an epicenter of environmental action and dissent, to the point of attracting the attention of TPTB, who virtually squelched the movement with a combination of infiltration, resultant paranoia, deceit, grand jury subpoenas, prosecutions, and stiff prison sentences. Any activists who were left either went dormant or moved away. The all powerful money interest – the timber industry – is now totally free to do as they please. To keep the people amused and distracted, they fund and influence local media, publish the glossy monthly Eugene eye candy magazine, fund new and improved sports teams, fund the schools, and are behind the fact that there is no sales tax.

    The counterculture vibe there now is centered around the safe issues of transgender rights, the homeless population, and token efforts like banning plastic bags.
    Far from being an emerald forest, the area is, in reality, a monoculture crop of douglas fir, heavily helicopter sprayed with an array of herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers. Clear-cutting is no longer the biggest problem in these forests… There is a stunning lack of diversity, and the forest floors are strangely barren. These tree crops are on mountainsides, so the various sprays float down both in air and water, into the lovely little family farms in the richly soiled valleys below.

    Once in a while there is an article on the issue, but blood tests for these substances are not readily available, and the cost of testing falls on the patient. In addition to the toll on human health, think of the effects on wildlife, those who live in it all the time.
    http://www.eugeneweekly.com/20131226/news-briefs/chemical-sprays-continue-sickening-rural-residents
    http://cironline.org/reports/oregonians-fear-harmful-effects-timberland-herbicides-3731

    •Just a note to those who think there is too much negativity in the comments here – the site is self policing to a certain extent. Without this, you would be reading Endless quotes from various gurus and other entries having absolutely nothing to do with the main topic here. It’s called trolling. The undercurrent of all this is a power struggle. We will not willingly hand this forum over to the trolls who would love to squelch any real debate on these issues. I am also averse to being told to ‘play nice’, because in the past, it was always just a trap set to disempower.
    .

  • Eugene Weekly seems mainstream pedestrian, lets talk about “both sides” and manages to avoid the major concerns, as most PTB news sources do. Putting doubt in the mix is the only real come back left for the corporate “news”. The science is in and getting worse every day. I do think people are getting the point, however long it takes, even to late.

  • .
    .
    @ Dredd I am not a member. I am not a proponent or opponent. What suggestions do you have for them? Would you have them stage gatherings for mass suicides and provide the means? You know, if they did that, the contributions from outside would skyrocket once the general population saw that they were serious. Would you give $ to an organization that actively facilitated the suicide of lots and lots of people and was actually getting it done? Did you see Soylent Green where they had the Euthanasia Centers where you could have it done “humanely.”
    .
    .
    .
    TOKYO (AP) — When the dust settles on the marquee venue for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, it could well be the most expensive sports stadium in the world.

    The latest cost estimate of 252 billion yen ($2 billion at current exchange rates) would push it beyond the current record-holder, the $1.6 billion MetLife stadium completed in 2010 for the New York Jets and Giants football teams.
    .
    .

  • Bob S.,

    Thanks for your July 15th, 2015 at 5:53 pm comment. Your comments often very nicely illustrate much that I write about here, perhaps especially regarding socially corrosive contempt. Do you feel especially proud now that you have demonstrated, again, your probable dominance as Lord of the Flies? It strikes me that your knowledge and skills may well qualify you for participation at Fractal Planet.

    A few needed corrections: (1) Given that, like Guy, I change my views with changing evidence, they do not qualify as obsessive. (2) As I have written many times over the past few months, my views remain strongly, experientially emotion-focused, not highly intellectualized. (3) Given that so many people—certainly those of a political persuasion!—still do not agree with an emotional focus, neither do my views qualify as politically correct, and surely not here at NBL as your consistently derogatory comments, and many others’, often emphasize. (4) Regarding what happens in the “real world”, which you refer to, will you please provide a few research references that demonstrate the effectiveness of the methods that you advocate for helping the loving couples and children you refer to? Somewhat like Guy’s Climate Summary and Update, I have provided MANY such references within the books that I have recommended, which you obviously have not read and I expect you never will.

    Regarding some people’s strong need for dominance as the Fly Lord here, and how shame and self-esteem probably play a critical role in that identity struggle, perhaps these two paragraphs from Greenberg and Goldman will help. This sentence seems especially relevant to me, “As long as their view of reality prevails, all is apparently smooth, but if the other challenges, then sparks fly.”:

    “Shame anxiety is often the emotion that is organizing the dominant person’s position as they fear diminishment or loss of esteem or status. Dominant partners assert their dominance to regulate their own negative affect—especially to regulate shame. Maintaining the one-up position is essential to regulating their self-esteem and protecting their identity. They often use rationality to prove they are right. Often, it is as though the lives of the dominant people depend on their being right. If their definition of reality is proved wrong, their identity is threatened and they feel tremendously at risk. This form of dominance often arises when one person needs another person to bolster their self-esteem, compensate for perceived deficits in the self, or make up for past diminishment or humiliation. The dominate person’s whole sense of self depends on defining a reality or winning if there is any dispute. This is the only way they know how to feel good. Perfectionists usually fall in this category. This often leads to competitiveness between people, with the less dominant always trying to prove their worth but losing in the end and feeling inferior. Shame thus arises most often in dominant people when their identity is threatened, and dominance is an attempt to regulate shame.

    In identity-based dominance cycles, the dominant partners carry on in what is normal discourse for the couple, always proving their point, and their partners defer but end up feeling silently defeated and resentful or inadequate. When challenged, the dominant partners, to stave off feeling shame at diminishment, exert their dominance more actively by becoming more highly rational and insistent and then angry or contemptuous. Dominant partners often may have entered in the relationships in a helping or teaching role. They initially might tend to the other’s anxiety or teach them about life, feelings, sex, or anything in which they are able to be in the superior role. As long as their view of reality prevails, all is apparently smooth, but if the other challenges, then sparks fly. It is important to dominant partners’ self-esteem that they feel superior to others, but as we have said, this builds in an inherent sense of competition in relationships, with the dominant people always needing to prove they are one-up and right.”

  • Just looking at the name of the org most referenced in the article, 350 Eugene, is a testament to the inherent inertia of the masses.

    Personally, I don’t believe Dr. Mcpherson *needs* to address his most staunch critics. Kinda like a lawyers advice to keep quiet – nothing you can say will *help* you, and anything you say can only make matters worse. Anything Guy says to these attack dogs will be twisted and used against him to intensify the attacks.

    Let them savor El Nino and suffer the *storms of their grandchildren* — they’ll come around.

    Also don’t feel NBL comments can be shoehorned into warm fuzzies. Besides, as we have all witnessed, those preaching warm fuzzies see no problem with using semantics to hurl the most vile ad homs at those who may disagree. Fuzzy, furry fakes, IMO.

    Whereas, as Sabine points out and I agree, one genuine act can trump a head stuffed with book words and touch us genuinly. The elusive love — start small – the ability to love mankind may come later, after much practice. At least that’s what I heard 🙂

    And to those who find it difficult to watch videos or read articles documenting man’s cruelty – don’t know if it’s a blessing or curse for me as sometimes I find myself emotionally shattered – like the pain and suffering of it all rushes into me.

    Lidia – glad to stay spunky, as I know no other way 🙂

    Time for my walk.

  • Dear Bud,

    Reading this, I can’t help thinking that this is a description of Bud Nye:

    “The dominate (dominating?) person’s whole sense of self depends on defining a reality or winning if there is any dispute. This is the only way they know how to feel good. Perfectionists usually fall in this category.”

    I don’t know whether to yawn or laugh, goodness me.

    Bob S has an excellent sense of the absurd which you don’t understand, that’s all.

    Your sermons only add to the absurdity. So, let it be…take it easy….enjoy the summer while you can. Get out and about. 🙂

  • @ed – Love. (btw I adopted this greeting from Osho. In the Mediterranean world people often sprinkle their conversation with little reminders of religious wisdom. When giving a talk or writing a letter they may begin with “in the name of god, the merciful and compassionate.” It reminds them to speak from love and truth. In India people often greet with a gesture and word indicating an awareness of our common Divinity. I am adopting this word (reality) Love to remind myself not to be sucked into the mood you identify quoted below.)

    “What’s harmful is the persistent meme that defines the NBL space that “I’m OK, you’re not OK”…or “I’m smart…you’re dumb”…or “I have the answers…and you’re a clueless moron”.

    I will risk making you the target of certain NBL-NTE fundamentalist extremists, by saying your statement gives me hope (forbidden word noted!) for a respectful rational discussion on this blog. I suspect also that you will be able to deal with any objections to what you shared above, even if it should influence the despised goat (me) to hang around a bit longer.

    Ed the joke you shared is working as a kind of koan for me, but I’m sure it will hit me at some point and I will get it. It emboldens me to tell a story I heard that rung my bell, but I’m not so sure how others will react to it, so here goes:

    A recent fan of Alan Watts and zen visited Japan to see what the real deal was like. A monk volunteered to show him around the temple grounds. They came to a porch open on a sand garden, and having statues of some of the patriarchs of their lineage against the wall. As they came to each one the monk bowed deeply before identifying who the statue represented. Finally the visitor felt the need to show his understanding of zen, so he spat on the statue before the monk could bow before it. A puzzled look came on the monk’s face at this, then he brightened and smiled as though suddenly understanding and said, “I see – I bow, you spit!”

    Something for the unenlightened to ponder, eh….

    Bob S – Love. Congrats on your rapid recovery. I can tell from your comment to Bud Nye that you haven’t lost your edge….

    Pat – Love. “don’t hit me so hard with the bat!” – very funny. Glad your sense of humor is intact.

    Sabine – Love. Keep up the good work. Remember if I should leave you can always find someone to scapegoat or turn into a strawman to kick around. For some who comment here Bud Nye is a handy person to beat up on if I am not available. Some here make me feel I am back in high school. Actually it’s more like kindergarten at times….

  • The author of the Eugene Weekly article managed to bring up all the usual names, like Al Gore, Bill McKibben and Scott Johnson. I’m surprised he didn’t add Naomi Klein as well.
    At least he mentioned the Pope. Perhaps he could write a follow up article and just include the Pope and Bernie Sanders. Maybe the two of them combined could really add an extra dose of hopium to the mix.
    B B B Bernie and the Pope. Kind of reminds me of an Elton John song from the seventies.

    @Wren. Thanks for the Eugene background information. That helps to put the article in context.

  • Tom, thanks as always for all the links you provide!!

    Ed says (in previous post), “What’s harmful is the persistent meme that defines the NBL space that “I’m OK, you’re not OK”…or “I’m smart…you’re dumb”…or “I have the answers…and you’re a clueless moron”.

    Well said Ed. Yes, it is too bad that happens here over and over and over again. I keep checking for the gems that show up occasionally that are ego free.
    As Sabine says,
    “what I often miss here on NBL: people talking about what they do in the moment, the right thing, as it always is if you put yourself in the background and attend to the need of the Other. That’s real love, the one that will remain. You’ve got that. ”

    I miss that too.

    Is there any healthy place to go to share facts and feelings about humans decimation of the planet without ego and fear getting in the way? So many groups, websites, comments sections end up becoming reflections and examples of why we are in this predicament.
    It may be a function of (as Sabine has so eloquently pointed out on many occasions) the nature of cyber communication. But then again, I’ve been involved in many groups with face to face interaction that end up disintegrating due to infighting.

    Scribbler’s blog is excellent on so many levels but downright creepy when it comes to his banning commentary that doesn’t fall in line with his way of thinking.
    Tom— were you vaporized there again? I think your post about appreciating the concern someone expressed about collapse was erased? If so, there was NOTHING about that post that was counterproductive or unhealthy! It seemed so benign—- with the exception that you called Robert out on his intolerance which I would encourage him to examine. He must be terrified of the life on earth collapsing due to humans.

    Lastly:
    Bob S. says, “Also don’t feel NBL comments can be shoehorned into warm fuzzies. Besides, as we have all witnessed, those preaching warm fuzzies see no problem with using semantics to hurl the most vile ad homs at those who may disagree. Fuzzy, furry fakes, IMO.”
    Yes!

  • Sabine – Thank you for you kind words. I rarely post comments but I read NBL regularly.

    You said ‘I’m probably assuming a lot but I bet that thestormcrow doesn’t need to read anything at all in order to do what he/she? does. 100 Ohso books taken down from the attic would be a complete waste of time.

    Your assumptions are correct,except for an occasional field guide or book on natural history. As for Osho, I had never heard of him/her or it.(I have since looked it up).

    I read alot and still many books mentioned here are ones that I have never heard of. I have gotten many good recommendations here and appreciate it. What I have a hard time appreciating is when the pedants use their vast list of books they have read as a verbal sword to cut other people down,attempting to prove their intellectual or spiritual superiority.

    Some people will describe, in complete detail, the face of GOD, but couldn’t tell you the color of the bird that perch on their window ledge for the last 5 years.

  • Tom said – Yes indeed Guy – the message is spreading; unfortunately, the “action” is not.

    What should Humanity do

    As the Earth fills with its’ # 2 ?

    Do nothing! Just sit

    in our vast pile of shit

    Surrender and say “I love you”

    Thanks Ben the Donkey! Very good to know that you are still out there.

  • Sabine,

    July 16th, 2015 at 9:44 am you wrote “Reading this, I can’t help thinking that this is a description of Bud Nye: “The dominate (dominating?) person’s whole sense of self depends on defining a reality or winning if there is any dispute. This is the only way they know how to feel good. Perfectionists usually fall in this category.”

    I agree completely with your suggestion that often when I respond to what others write here I take part in an identity struggle instead of rolling over and playing dead with submission as most people do—especially when dominants resort to emotional abuse, insults, adolescent name-calling, and other forms of verbal violence in order to establish and maintain their dominance in defining their alleged reality, as people often do here, some with great consistency. On the other hand, this does not mean that necessarily my “whole sense of self depends on defining a reality or winning if there is any dispute”. I think that what one says and, especially, HOW THEY SAY IT goes a very long way toward suggesting the degree to which their whole sense of self depends on that struggle.

    I disagree with you strongly concerning your suggestion that it makes good sense, or that it works as a generally helpful policy, for people to ignore this kind of behavior, in that way rewarding and enabling it in our relationships. Perhaps as a woman in this extremely violent, patriarchal, misogynist society, you have found it necessary to submit to this kind of behavior so often, in so many ways, and in so many areas of your life that its viciously destructive nature has become for the most part transparent to you. It has not become transparent to me, and to defend people who use highly destructive, abusive tactics as having “an excellent sense of the absurd”, a subtle sense of humor that I presumably do not understand, “that’s all”, strikes me as one of the worst things an individual or group can do when confronted by these people who often meet the diagnostic criteria for antisocial and/or narcissistic personality disorder. Perhaps you remain blissfully unaware of the nature of domestic abuse in this country and around the world and its effects on women and children? Perhaps you have not yet been raped? Perhaps you did not experience significant physical or emotional abuse as a child or adolescent? Perhaps you have had sufficient luck not to have experienced domestic abuse, nor you children, nor your female friends? If you wish to defend and encourage this kind of verbally abusive behavior here, fine. I do not. I feel glad to “add to the absurdity” with my “sermons” encouraging and in defense of people who decide to stop submitting to the kind of abuse so often demonstrated here, at Fractal Planet, at other places on the internet, in our homes, and in our workplaces. Actually, I find this a wonderful cognitively and emotionally stimulating use of my summer, compared with distracting myself from this abuse, ignoring it, chalking it up to humor, or hoping that it will go away. In my opinion, this stuff plays an important, fundamental role in the omnicide we have produced and support on a daily basis: the results of people avoiding their painful, primary emotions.

  • Ditto thestormcrow re: Ben the Donkey. Miss you BTD.

    Excellent book—-Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America by Barbara Ehrenreich

    Some excerpts:

    “There is a vast difference between positive thinking and existential courage.”

    “Breast cancer, I can now report, did not make me prettier or stronger, more feminine or spiritual. What it gave me, if you want to call this a “gift,” was a very personal, agonizing encounter with an ideological force in American culture that I had not been aware of before—one that encourages us to deny reality, submit cheerfully to misfortune, and blame only ourselves for our fate.”

    and

    “Transcendent Oneness does not require self-examination, self-help, or self-work. It requires self-loss.”

    Pat—this is for you:

  • Coming here is like entering an alternative universe. The dismaying reality is that the vast majority of the populace is in total denial about the extent of the climate crisis, and this denial is being furthered perhaps most insidiously by the “progressive” media, which feature the likes of Naomi Klein and Bill McKibben over and over again to drum the message that everything can be changed if we switched to better lightbulbs, electric cars, alternative energy,…. and elected Bernie Sanders or the “green” Jill Stein president. I’m finding for example tons of resistance to the very notion of NTE in an online left communist/anarchist discussion list i take part in, people believe that there’s nothing wrong with the global industrial mega-machine if “we” could just take it over. But the vast majority is not even anywhere near there, mass media trivia and entertainment rule their measly little worlds, which start and end with their “smart” phones and other electronic devices.

  • Common Dreams latest:

    Human Exploitation of Nature Has Driven Planetary Health to the Edge

    They hint around the edges in this summary article (link to the original research paper is contained within), but can’t quite ‘go there’, using caveats like, “We are on the verge of…[bad irreversible things]” and “unless immediate changes take place…[more bad irreversible things]”

    From the article:

    “We have been mortgaging the health of future generations to realize economic and development gains in the present…

    Human action is undermining the resilience of the earth’s natural systems, and in so doing we are compromising our own resilience, along with our health and, frankly, our future…

    These environmental changes—which include, but extend far beyond climate change… and increase the risks to health arising from major challenges as diverse as under-nutrition and food insecurity, freshwater shortages, emerging infectious diseases, and extreme weather events.”
    —-
    But, it IS a a Rockefeller Foundation-funded project so the summary has to contain this, or something like it:

    “Humanity can be stewarded successfully through the 21st century by addressing the unacceptable inequities in health and wealth within the environmental limits of the Earth, but this will require the generation of new knowledge, implementation of wise policies, decisive action, and inspirational leadership.”

    Yup. That’s what we need: wise policies, decisive action & inspirational leadership…

    Fuck all.

  • Jeff S. – For me, leaving here is like entering an alternate universe! Strange, horrible, but the drama so interesting in its own way.

    mike k.-
    There once was a cat named Mat
    Who fell in Love with a bat.
    He jumped so high
    He wanted to fly
    but alas, was a little too fat.


    “I went to the country to escape the noise and lights
    And I laid there in the pine cones all night
    I woke in the morning when all the trees were gone
    I got this sinking feeling, everything felt wrong
    Strip malls and dollar stores and diesel in the air
    I slept in a rowboat
    And I anchored far from shore
    Now I don’t hear them chain saws no more
    I woke in the morning
    When someone pulled the plug
    I was stranded in the lake bottom sludge
    With all the tires, paint cans and things

    Every little critter, feather, fur and fin
    Cried to mother nature to come back for them
    For every piece of litter, for every little sin
    She cried for all of them, feather, fur and fin…”

  • My soulda,coulda, woulda, Dream . Not the merican dream of more money. Here in the West we got two way to go. Left and Right. But “nobody nowhere” seems to know the difference.
    Because if we did, it’s a no-brainer ! We would quit going the one way and finally go the other !
    It’s high time we faced the big, the main, the most fundamental issue of direction.

    See, before Western Civilization there was only one way to go. And that way was to go along and get along with your tribe. Because a person without a tribe was in those times a fate worse then death.
    But with Western Civilization there is something new afoot with man. We are plainly seeing the rise or emergence or liberation of the Individual – stepping away from our old tribal-collective way.
    The West is originally and truly all about Independence.

    P.S. I.E. ,Where’s our 21st century homesteaders? Everyone talking care of themselves on the land would of course take care of everybody and the land.

    P.S.S. It’s so hard, because I keep forgetting with every breath about the methane and the death. But am enjoying the Edge of Extinction Prof. McPherson + being able to spread some peace and love here,THX ALL HERE !

  • As the world lurches towards collapse, neo fascism will be more and more overt and powerful. Those who are without hope will be among it’s converts and ultimate victims. Their anger and despair will be used to make them tools of the elites, turning them against the intellectuals, artists, free thinkers, nonconformists, liberals, gays, women, and anyone designated as being weak and a legitimate target for the betrayed citizen’s rage. Thus have the elites always deflected revolutionary energies against those who might dare to manifest them. The two minutes hate will belch endlessly from TV’s, and the hungry masses will be willing attack dogs. Of course a drum beat assuring people that there is no hope will undermine any efforts towards positive change. Needless to say those being victimized with this propaganda will not have a clue about how they are being manipulated against their real interests.

    I must say that the attacks against Chris Hedges and Naomi Klein and many other voices for awakening and radical change are not a hopeful sign of things to come. Some seem to come here mainly to express their anger and find people to blame, and of course show their contempt for anyone proposing any kind of positive ideas for dealing with this global crisis. It has been certainly a revealing lab for me to take part in. A crash course in some features of the coming psychology of those caught up in civilizational collapse.

    I have to say – thanks but no thanks to what some of you are promoting as your religion of hopelessness. When I read of folks buying guns and preparing their means of committing suicide, or even counseling others to do so early and avoid the rush, it feels like I am back in the psyche ward once more. I wonder, are these folks really that allergic to fresh air? Is it so hard to see that despair is not really good medicine?

    @Caroline – Love. I have two of your books, and as I told you once, used Sacred Demise as material for a group I participate in. Since you have apparently bought into the hopeless point of view, I feel your sharing has changed. Perhaps you feel this too. Where is John O’Donohue when we need him? Do you feel he would roll over and give up in these times?

    Barbara Ehrenreich is one of my favorite people. She is a dedicated activist, and I have read Bright Sided. Is there such a thing as false hope, and can it be used to disempower people? Absolutely. But what Barbara does not do in that wonderful book is give up on real hope for a better world. Otherwise why would she have put in the difficult work she did in order to write Nickled and Dimed?

    You used a quote from her out of context: “Transcendent Oneness does not require self-examination, self-help, or self-work. It requires self-loss.” I have spent a big chunk of my time in life for over 50 years trying to help my fellow alcoholics/addicts recover through self-examination, self-help, and self work. Do you really think Barbara meant to deny the usefulness of the AA program of recovery in her isolated comment? I don’t think you need to check with her to find that out, but feel free – I am sure she would be glad to share with you.

    Any real spiritual path is founded on what she calls self-loss. The problem is that losing the ego is not easy or simple, and always takes a long process that involves a lot of help from others who have gone that way before. If you read Barbara’s recent book about her own spiritual search, you will find she would not disagree with what I just wrote.

    Thanks for sharing Caroline, yours for a better world, mike k

  • ‘DeMocker adds that McPherson “never mentioned that you can pull carbon out of the atmosphere and reduce the 400 ppm to a livable amount. And in that he’s doing a profound disservice. It can be done, 7 percent yearly reduction.”’

    In the bizarre world of the mainstream media any absurd claim that has no basis (in other words a lie) can be promulgated with impunity.

    In the real world industrial humans are incapable of anything other than increasing the atmospheric CO2 level via the rapid desequestering of carbon (that nature sequestered millions of years ago). The current (July) level of over 401ppm is unprecedented.

    Meanwhile, the economic collapse gathers speed; NZ diary prices fell again this week, resulting in the prospect of a pay-out of below $4 per kilogram milk fats to farmers (down from over $8 last year). The party’s over.

  • I haven’t read ‘Sacred Demise’ by Carolyn Baker. Since when is Caroline
    Carolyn Baker?

  • SHIT! God damn mother fuck! I thought mike k was gone! So much for a mans word.

  • Assuming a “Never Too Late” category, one might pursue study of how minerals activate your tumor suppressing genes.

    http://emineral.info/emineral/selenium/

  • @Kirk Hamilton SHIT! God damn mother fuck! I thought mike k was gone! So much for a mans word. Don’t you know? There’s important work for mikey k to do on NBL. There’s souls to be saved! Folks to be enlightened! Doomers to be set straight! Fear not, Naomi Klein and Bill McKibben are coming to the rescue. All we need to do is believe and our desires will become reality. Just like in Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Secret_(book)

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Guy’s observation in “The Last Automated Tweet” is correct – an increasing number folks are awakening to reality. Not the masses, not yet, but will get there. Things are about to get dire. Shockingly so. At that point people will freak and demand of the people in charge do something dammit! Enter geo-engineering. I Don’t know if it’ll extend our stay on the planet or hasten its end. but it will happen. I don’t expect the human race to accept its fate and quietly into the the void. We’re far too important for that!

  • To those responding to Mike K, please stop or this will never end! We’re obviously dealing with a compulsive personality, who is so blinded by ego, he can’t see he’s wasting his and everyone’s else’s time, and who not unlike Christians, likes to see himself as still being in a minority. I have lost track of how many people have come through this space spouting the most common mainstream garbage, but because they are saying it here, they just get off imagining they’re being a “contrarian”. Please ignore the man, and maybe he’ll just find another venue to express his prosaic opinions, and where he might better feel the love.

  • Bud Nye – Word!

  • Daniel,
    Sounds like good advice. I generally scroll past or skim, but happened to notice the confusion about names. I assume Caroline is not
    Carolyn Baker.

  • Alternet reprinted all or most of the truthout article about Guy. No new information, just a little exposure for Guy.

    http://www.alternet.org/environment/mass-extinction-its-end-world-we-know-it

  • I live on a hill. It has rained a lot, off and on, the last few weeks. However, these past 3 days of temps reaching 98F have made the once soggy ground hard—like a rock.
    Haven’t been West in a few, maybe 10, years. The ground out there must be like steel.

  • Yet another self reinforcing feedback loop rears it’s ugly head,

    Warming of oceans due to climate change is unstoppable, say US scientists
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/16/warming-of-oceans-due-to-climate-change-is-unstoppable-say-us-scientists

  • Living in a bubble world here in VT: weather a bit cooler and rainier than usual. Some extreme highs a few weeks back but all is comfortingly serene now, weather-wise. Except for the lack of bugs you might think things were A-OK. Could the extra rain be due to particulate matter drifting our way, from the wildfires?

    Tomatoes limping forward. Lots of snow peas. Onions are fat and happy. Oceans of kale. Peppers and eggplants struggling to get started. More and more dead conifers.


    Tomorrow another all-day hearing on the 1 million + s.f development. The developer claims his hotel/light industry/276-housing unit/retail/rest stop will bring a million visitors a year to our downtown, which is a few miles away from the exit. That’s over 2700 people per day.. and the town only has 4000 people right now!

    The insanity is beyond belief. We suspect the developer is paying a certain realtor to sit on every board in town and promote this project. They go on and on about “tourism’, and then brag about how the new (already-built) fast-food joint “shows people what our town has to offer”.

    Sheesh. Like you would leave CT or NYC or Boston just so that you can go to a Subway in VT?

    There’s no accounting for it…

  • @ Wren

    I knew I liked you Wren, but had no idea you and I may have lived in Eugene around the same time. What you say is terribly true. I was heavily involved with Earth First! in the late 80’s during the Spotted Owls wars. While I look back on those times with bittersweet memory, the naiveté that a bunch of college students/drop outs, drug addled misfits and dirty hippy cultural malcontents could usurp the only industry in the region, was/is why most protest movements are made up of mostly twenty-something’s….ahhh the folly of youth. Strange to think that compared to today’s surveillance state those days almost look like Keystone cop skits to me now.

    To this day, I can’t think of a more profoundly devastating and heart wrenching image than the boundary between an old-growth grove and a clear cut. There simply aren’t any left at this point, but back then there was still around 10% old growth left. The lumber mills were mostly designed for large trees, and they wanted to grab all they could before being forced to retrofit for second and third growth, and that’s exactly what they did. What a fucking sham!

    Much of what we did, other than what I won’t mention, was to bring people out to the forests so they could see for themselves. The devastation was so overwhelming there probably has never been a greater incentive in becoming a radical than a clear cut. People would just break down crying or become enraged, which is what we wanted, but to avail.

    I would like to believe that it was the TPTB that eventually undid Eugene’s radical past, but unfortunately I believe it was something far more pervasive: plain ol’ burnout in fighting a losing battle, the zeitgeist simply moved on as we aged. Aside from the fact, that back then pretty much everyone I knew were rabid anti-natalist, now, they all have children. The end.

    Take care friend, and keep up the excellent comments, you are one of the few voices here that keeps this space relevant.

  • JC Dolph-
    Again I used up my two comments last post so that by the time I saw your comment about the fact that you have cancer and you’re dying, I wasn’t able to respond. I almost responded anyway but decided it would probably get deleted.

    I want to thank you again for sharing such a personal, meaningful and poignant aspect of your life. I think you and I came here for the same reasons, and were similarly disappointed. But that doesn’t mean I don’t keep coming back. It does, however, mean that I skip over certain posts. But that’s probably not unusual. Everyone here does that. We can self-select what we read, just as we self-select what is “news” and what is “important” everywhere else online. Most of what I see here reminds me of listening to Grandpa Simpson tell one of his long-winded tales (see below). I hope you keep coming back, but if you don’t want to waste your time I also understand. Just please know that I’ve appreciated you.

  • Caroline: yep, my comments lasted maybe a half hour then got deleted. i tried on his new thread yesterday to post this (below), with NO COMMENT, but it wouldn’t even load (so i guess i’m banned, yet again). Other people post that things are looking really dire, but never take the next step to acceptance of our fate. He just refuses to go there. Whatever – i told him that i really admire his site and that he a great researcher but he didn’t want to hear it (especially since i also chided him on connecting the dots that he himself provides). Thanks for noticing.

    Major greenhouse gases hit record highs in 2014: report

    http://news.yahoo.com/major-greenhouse-gases-hit-record-highs-2014-report-151209005.html

    [begins]

    In 2014 the world’s oceans swelled, major greenhouse gases that fuel global warming hit record highs and the planet’s surface temperature reached its hottest point in 135 years, international researchers said Thursday.

    The findings are contained in the 2014 State of the Climate report, a peer-reviewed study that examines temperature, precipitation and weather events around the world.

    A total of 413 scientists from 58 countries around the world contributed to the report, the 25th in a series that is based on data collected by environmental monitoring stations and instruments on land, water, ice and in space.

    The warmth reached deep into the oceans and high into the atmosphere, and scientists warned that the climate continues to change quickly compared to the pre-industrial era, with no end in sight.

    “If we were to freeze greenhouse gases at their current levels, the seas would actually continue to warm for centuries to millennia,” said oceanographer Greg Johnson of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory.
    [read it all]

  • Me:

    “pat,

    What your church says means nothing.

    What your church does says everything.

    Which is nothing.”
    ———————————
    pat Says: (in response)
    July 16th, 2015 at 8:57 am

    …@ Dredd I am not a member. I am not a proponent or opponent. What suggestions do you have for them?
    ===========================================
    You are what you do, not what you deny.

    You promote, then you deny.

    You preach, but you do not practice.

    I would have you and yours STFU.

    “Our days are numbered. Passionately pursue a life of excellence.”

    You can do that by spending time on the church of the clueless blog and urge them to practice what they preach or STFU.

  • Daniel,

    “Take care friend, and keep up the excellent comments, you are one of the few voices here that keeps this space relevant.”

    I second that and want to extend it to you: you also keep this space relevant.

    When I read or see picture of what is, and has been happening in your country, to your country’s old landscapes, I feel as if I’m seeing/reading about scenes from a different planet.

    I have never seen American wildness/wilderness with my own eyes, I can only try to imagine it, what it might still be like if things were different…
    To see a clear-cut for real – I would cry too and become enraged.

    I don’t have the words to describe my feelings but when I read about this or see pictures, my heart ceases to beat for a few seconds, and I want to burst with frustration and anger. And that’s just reading.

    Here, in the UK, it’s still easy to pretend because the scars inflicted on the landscape are on a smaller scale and have a way of blending into the scenery. It’s probably because everything is smaller here, and we still have many relatively small farmers working the land. The typical enclosed and cultivated landscape somehow looks beautiful, the hedges and the flowers which are often allowed to grow without being sprayed. And, of course, old groves of deciduous trees, old yews, with all this around me, I can pretend and pick fungi and berries.
    But the awareness of what is really happening never leaves me. Still, I live from moment to moment, doing what I can for other life while it still exists. That’s the only way as far as I can describe it.

    So, we can still fool ourselves here but the large-scale and wilful destruction of American landscapes is truly heart-breaking. I feel for you.
    People like you and Wren, and the others here (I won’t name them all) who don’t avert their eyes are very brave.

    I hope I could be the same if I were American.
    People like you are truly rare.

  • Naomi Klein, Bill McKibben and the Pope are the fucking trifecta of AntiChrists for action on human survival. Climate change is only one out of six direct drivers of mass extinction. When the Pope hands out condoms and funds abortions, I’ll reconsider.

    I got kicked off of Commie Dreams so many times I’ve given up.

    America has killed 20 million civilians since world war 2.

    Fully 50% of Europe’s “Renewable Energy” comes from burning wood that is imported from all over the world. This is called “bio-fuel”. The rainforests of Indonesia and Malaysia are clear-cut to grow palm-oil that is burnt in Europe’s German cars. To make way for these palm-oil mono-cultures, elephants and orangutans are quietly killed. Indonesia will lose 98 percent of its natural rainforest by 2022. Palm oil plantations have gone from 10 million acres in 2005 to a projected 50 million acres in 2025. Fully 50% of all the soy grown in South America is fed to China’s pigs, much of the rest of it is turned into soy oil and burnt in Northern Europe’s diesel cars. We destroy 20 million acres of trees every year. Our soil is disappearing so fast, we will be forced to destroy millions of acres more. Forest fires, disease and drought will kill millions more. Forests face a trifecta of hopelessness.

    All the spiritual mumbo jumbo on this site only distracts us from the truth. Philosophy is a word-play logic game that has nothing to do with reality.

    When people say to me, “Hey, you were right!” I smile and tell them, “I know, I call it ‘The Right Man’s Burden.'” This site is not a troll game of who’s king of the mountain. It is the chaos of response to the end of life on earth. Some pray for rain, others move on.

    The worst nightmare in a trailer park is a sewage backup. People don’t understand sewage pumps can’t pump sanitary napkins and wipes just because they see the word “bio-degradable” on the package. This is called a Shitacaine or, Shitstorm, I call it, just another shit stick we gotta lick.

    Evil In A Cup
    http://www.alternet.org/environment/how-instant-ramen-noodles-are-destroying-rainforests-killing-orangutans-and-promoting

    Forests Or Food. Which Is It?

    Forests Or Food. Which Is It? from collapse

  • Babajingo,

    “So shines a good deed in a weary world.” Thank you for the kind thoughts.

    For most of my life I participated in, and provoked others to play, the repugnant game of polyarchal “gotcha”. I really didn’t, and still don’t, want to waste the end in similar fashion.

    The younger of my two daughters chortled at your Simpson video; yeah, guilty as charged. There’s also the penchant for repetition. My elder assured me that she, and her sister, would not forget my “stories”. I said it wasn’t my concern; I was afraid I wouldn’t remember. It’s called “chemo-brain”. Throw in the headaches and not even all the kings doctors at Bethesda can help put the synapses back together again.

    So, while most of my fingerprints have been erased, I will watch from the sidelines.

    Great “handle”, by the way.

  • The old saying “you can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time” has credence.

    Climate change is what the world’s population perceives as the top global threat, according to research conducted by the Pew Research Center, with countries in Latin America and Africa particularly concerned about the issue.”

    (Guardian, Climate change seen as greatest threat by global population).

  • .
    .
    The saying goes:
    . You can fool some of the people all of the time,
    . You can fool all of the people some of the time,
    .But you can’t fool all the people all the time.
    .
    .
    .

    .
    .
    Looking forward to war, famine, and pestilence.
    .
    .
    Just sitting on this runaway train, staring out the window, with a cat on my lap.
    .
    Sadly, this is what we’ve come to:
    .
    The Voluntary Extinction Movement says:
    “…thou shalt not procreate.”

    The Church of Euthanasia says:
    “Save the planet, kill yourself.”

  • Tom,

    Scribbler not only deleted your post (which I didn’t see), yesterday he criticized you for posting your “opinions” that amounted to “masturbatory doomerism.” Alas, even this critique of his is now gone too. I should have made a screen capture of it.

    Blinkered Hopium is strong in this one despite all the daily bad news evidence he details, and despite the fact that his “opinions” of the necessity to immediately begin shutting down all our fossil fueled activities as what is needed is no where near being implemented.

    At best, he’s a climatic oncologist who knows exactly how bad the cancer is and is metastasizing at an alarming rate, but still wants to believe that some form of political/social chemo (aka: policy changes) will save us from — as his good buddy, Colorado Bob likes to continually remind us — “Hell is coming for breakfast.”

    Yukkity, yuck!

    Lidia,

    Regarding your small town Vermont fast-food (Subway) story line: After a Dunkin Donut franchise opened in the MA town where I live, the town responded by passing a fast food and formula restaurant prohibition. We didn’t eliminate the DD but ensured no other such fast food franchises would open here. Despite this lone insult our DD is not a-stand-alone eyesore that so many other fast food places are; just a small store set back off our main thoroughfare among a couple other shops.

    This sort of outright zoning prohibition is extremely rare, but doable if framed correctly. It also was doable because at the time I was the chair of the planning board and figured out the best way to write it; basically having to do with preserving the small rural and local character/identity of our town.

    I had gotten myself into this position on the planing board during an earlier fight to close down the loop hole in our zoning that was allowing MacMansions to be built here. Now that too is no longer readily available.

    Having accomplished these minor successes I have since retired to the beach. The weather here in New England is thankfully still somewhat normal and bearable, our garden is doing well (although we have an infestation of gyspy moths in the woods), and my toenails are super shiny, making for an attractive appetizer for the great whites lurking offshore. Har! That’s one way to feel alive these daze — courting a toothy predator!

    To the rest so inclined, I now return you to your regularly scheduled fare of bickering crabs on this here beach.

  • .
    .
    its “planning board,” not “planing board”
    .
    .
    it’s “McMansions,” not “MacMansions”
    .
    .
    Looking at Greece’s debt on a per-capita basis, at the end of 2014 there was more than $35,000 of debt for every Greek citizen, according Eurostat, whereas in Japan it was about $79,000, Bloomberg calculations show. In the U.S., it reached about $56,600, based on data from the Treasury Department.
    .
    .
    Looking forward to war, famine, and pestilence.
    .
    .
    Just sitting on this runaway train, staring out the window, with a cat on my lap.
    .
    Sadly, this is what we’ve come to:
    .
    The Voluntary Extinction Movement says:
    “…thou shalt not procreate.”

    The Church of Euthanasia says:
    “Save the planet, kill yourself.”
    .
    .
    .

  • Tom & Caroline, Scribbler deserves our respect because of the proven quality of his work.

    But he also appears to be a very naive establishment careerist in spite of his well written analyses.

    He isn’t a doomer in any sense.

    Scribbler is less of an enigma after reading his profile in his own words.

    He has openly stated his commitment to establishment Demo politics.

    He recently advocated hiring lawyerfish to bring lawsuits to save the planet.

    He is still writing more imaginary fiction/novels.

    He most assuredly is NOT agonizing about social chaos & suicide.

    His last sentence is instructive.

    I don’t know who would be anxious to contact him & about what?

    “Emerging threats analysis in key areas” is a euphemistic mouthful.

    In his own words;

    I’m a progressive novelist, non-fiction writer and emerging threats expert. I’ve served 8 years in the combat arms, spent 3 years as a police officer, and spent 3 years as Editor, Emerging Threats for Jane’s Information Group.

    I’ve spoken at over 250 events for schools nationwide and am currently working to both complete my third speculative fiction novel “The Death of Winter” and my second non-fic — a climate justice based book calleda and a climate/emerging threats book entitled “The Second Great Dying.”

    My robertscribbler blog is dedicated to supporting causes and spreading information and analysis that advance environmental, social and economic justice.

    Please feel free to contact me if you believe your cause would benefit from my written advocacy or if you need expert trends analysis in one of these key areas.

  • Continued destruction of Earth’s plant life places humankind in jeopardy – ‘The sun’s energy is stored in plants and fossil fuels, but humans are draining energy much faster than it can be replenished’

    http://www.desdemonadespair.net/2015/07/continued-destruction-of-earths-plant.html

    [begins]

    Unless humans slow the destruction of Earth’s declining supply of plant life, civilization like it is now may become completely unsustainable, according to a paper published recently by University of Georgia researchers in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

    “You can think of the Earth like a battery that has been charged very slowly over billions of years,” said the study’s lead author, John Schramski, an associate professor in UGA’s College of Engineering. “The sun’s energy is stored in plants and fossil fuels, but humans are draining energy much faster than it can be replenished.”

    Earth was once a barren landscape devoid of life, he explained, and it was only after billions of years that simple organisms evolved the ability to transform the sun’s light into energy. This eventually led to an explosion of plant and animal life that bathed the planet with lush forests and extraordinarily diverse ecosystems.

    The study’s calculations are grounded in the fundamental principles of thermodynamics, a branch of physics concerned with the relationship between heat and mechanical energy. Chemical energy is stored in plants, or biomass, which is used for food and fuel, but which is also destroyed to make room for agriculture and expanding cities.

    Scientists estimate that the Earth contained approximately 1,000 billion tons of carbon in living biomass 2,000 years ago. Since that time, humans have reduced that amount by almost half. It is estimated that just over 10 percent of that biomass was destroyed in just the last century.

    “If we don’t reverse this trend, we’ll eventually reach a point where the biomass battery discharges to a level at which Earth can no longer sustain us,” Schramski said. [read the rest if interested]

  • Today Scribbler again posted his verbatim standard sermon, but w/o any operationalized methods, mechanisms, or viable suggestions about just how to do it.

    “So if we want to have much hope of preventing total catastrophe, we need to stop burning the fossil fuels immediately, do our best to draw down some of the excess carbon, and really, really work hard to increase resiliency and to cut the fat out.”

    Good thinking, lad; especially the unoperationalized solution to, “really, really work hard to increase resiliency and to cut the fat out.”

    Compound interest is mostly fat for Jack Spratt, eh?

    Hillarious isn’t interested in drawing down carbon because she is focused on drawing in millions from her Israeli client.

    Nick Breeze’s viddy above surely shows that “drawing down some of the excess carbon” is like asking the holy flying cherubim to stand & deliver.

    When people like Robert finally confront their upcoming deaths, it will be so freakin ugly that I hope I am dead.

  • The article in the Eugene Weekly would be infuriating if it weren’t so predictable. A few years ago, I have a speech about how the news makes you dumb. Like all Cassandras, no one believed me or at least admitted to being a little persuaded. Print media adopt a pseudo-objective tone (but aren’t really objective when reporting anything beyond the merely factual) and are written to a template that requires even balance for contentious issues (despite when the evidence isn’t evenly balanced) and avoidance of drawing obvious conclusions. The EW article, for all its useful information, leads credulous readers down the primrose, not drawing its own conclusion but inviting readers to gawk and laugh a bit at the fellow traveling around wearing a sandwich board proclaiming “doom is nigh.” Nope, no issue loading there.

    For those who can appreciate evidence for its true import and impact (not Ran Prieur, apparently, who trails off with the lame argument “who can know for certain what will happen when it hasn’t yet happened?”), waffling on life-and-death issues is positively ludicrous. Further, the precautionary principle gets trampled by the profit motive even while many suffer significantly diminished returns as EROI continues to slope off (speaking of obvious conclusions). If I were Ted Taylor, I’d be embarrassed to have my name on that byline, and his credentials (and those of many of the so-called experts he cites) mean nothing to me, since the evidence speaks for itself.

  • Doom Porn

    Forests Vs. Food

    We only have about 10% of the forest we started with 10,000 years ago. We have about half the forests left from 2,000 years ago. We now destroy 20 million acres of forest every year. We already slashed and burned 50% of the rainforests on earth. Most of the destruction has been in the last 70 years.

    Rainforest soil is of poor quality and quantity so farming it only degrades it even faster. Rainforest roots are so dense, they don’t require robust and plentiful soils. Trees are living batteries of energy essential for the propagation of diversity of life on earth. We are draining the battery for all life on earth for foods like palm oil. Indonesia will destroy 98% of its rainforests by 2025.

    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150714160923.htm

    http://www.desdemonadespair.net/2015/07/graph-of-day-world-arable-land-per.html

    http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/campaigns/forests/solutions/our-disappearing-forests/

    http://www.livescience.com/27692-deforestation.html

    http://www.globalchange.umich.edu/globalchange1/current/lectures/kling/rainforest/rainforest.html

    http://infoamazonia.org/projects/fire/

    http://www.worldwildlife.org/threats/soil-erosion-and-degradation

    In 2007, the IPCC told us emissions must peak by 2015 to stay within 2 °C of warming.

    In 2014, the IPCC told us emissions must peak by 2030 to stay within 2 °C of warming.

    The IPCC says we can make this change because of what they call “negative-emissions bio-energy”. meaning we will get energy by consuming plant matter in a way that pulls more CO2 out of the air than it emits; for which, by the way, no such technology exists, and the kicker is, they say, that we will need 1.5 billion acres of NEW farmland to do it. That much farmland is about the size of India, which is equal to nearly 50% of all the arable land on earth.

    The acronym for this fantasy is BECCS (Bio-Energy Carbon Capture & Storage). The real acronym is BS (Bull Shit). Where do you think we’ll find all this new farmland? The rainforests. World hunger will guarantee it. Why? Read on.

    http://www.nature.com/news/policy-climate-advisers-must-maintain-integrity-1.17468

    https://www.theguardian.com/science/political-science/2015/may/12/the-climate-advisers-dilemma

    In 60 years, human agriculture will ground to a stop because of soil loss and degradation. 20% of China’s soil and 50% of its groundwater is already unsafe. We are right now already slashing and burning Brazil’s rainforests just to feed China’s pigs. China’s pigs already eat 50% of the soy grown in South America. The Chinese are buying up farmland all over the earth.

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/only-60-years-of-farming-left-if-soil-degradation-continues/

    https://e360.yale.edu/feature/chinas_dirty_pollution_secret_the_boom_poisoned_its_soil_and_crops/2782/

    http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/31478-china-s-communist-capitalist-ecological-apocalypse?tsk=adminpreview

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/the-whole-world-wants-south-americas-farmland/

    Because we add 1 MILLION PEOPLE TO EARTH EVERY 5 DAYS (each who would very much like to eat every day for at least 50 years), we will have to grow more food over the these next 50 years than we grew in all of the last 10,000 years, combined. This is called math, get used to it, it will rule your life. We already converted nearly half the earth’s surface into cities and farmland. Do you seriously believe 9 billion people will stop eating meat and wasting food?

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2007/aug/31/climatechange.food

    https://www.independent.co.uk/environment/have-we-reached-peak-food-shortages-loom-as-global-production-rates-slow-10009185.html

    http://news.berkeley.edu/2012/06/06/scientists-uncover-evidence-of-impending-tipping-point-for-earth/

    To feed nine billion people all at once for all their lives means we will need 12 million acres of brand new farmland EVERY year for 30 years. Instead, we are losing 24 million acres of farmland EVERY year. We are losing soil at twice the rate we need to grow it just to be able to eat, never mind the additional requirements of BECCS.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/mar/25/treating-soil-like-dirt-fatal-mistake-human-life

    We will soon run out of easy access to 2 critical fertilizers which are irreplaceable, cannot be manufactured by humans and for which there are no substitutes.

    http://www.nature.com/news/be-persuasive-be-brave-be-arrested-if-necessary-1.11796

    In 10 years 4 billion people will be without enough water.

    In 10 years 2 billion people will be severely short of water.

    http://www.un.org/waterforlifedecade/scarcity.shtml

    Ground water depletion has gone critical in major agricultural centers worldwide.

    http://mashable.com/2015/06/16/groundwater-aquifers-depleted/

    http://www.worldcrunch.com/world-affairs/take-5-alarming-droughts-around-the-world/droughts-global-warming-water-shortage/c1s19067/#.VYGtolVVikq

    https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2015-06/uoc–at061615.php

    The world’s rivers and lakes are drying up.

    http://www.worldpreservationfoundation.org/topic.php?cat=climateChange&vid=48#.VYHzqfm4S1s

    http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/photos/rivers-run-dry/#/freshwater-rivers-colorado-1_45140_600x450.jpg

    Drought is spreading across the earth. Try growing food for 9 billion people without water and soil. We kill elephants and orangutans before slashing and burning Indonesia’s remaining rainforests just to grow palm oil that is burned in Northern Europe’s German cars. 50% of Europe’s “Renewable Energy” comes from burning wood imported from all over the world. We call this the “Green Economy” on account of how green people are behind the ears when it comes to their e-CON-omy.

    http://www.eldoradocountyweather.com/climate/world-maps/world-drought-risk.html

    http://www.alternet.org/environment/how-instant-ramen-noodles-are-destroying-rainforests-killing-orangutans-and-promoting

    Two degrees of global warming is not ‘safe’, it’s crazy: James Hansen

    http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/breakfast/two-degrees-of-global-warming-is-not-safe/6444698

    All IPCC projections totally ignore accelerated methane emissions.

    In 25 years we will pass peak energy and minerals.

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959378011001361

    This will happen when all our new solar panels and wind mills stop working and become expensive junk we can’t afford to replace or recycle in times of shortages in water, food, energy, minerals and civility. Recycling their component alloys costs more and uses more energy than mining for them does. Each time a mineral is recycled it loses its quality and usefulness.

    http://energyinformative.org/lifespan-solar-panels/

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960148113005727

    http://bravenewclimate.com/2014/08/22/catch-22-of-energy-storage/

    Over the next 50 years energy demand will double (at the same time we have to reduce emissions at least 50%) because over 2 billion rural refugees will move to cities, and 75% of the infrastructure they require does not even exist yet. Already, China has poured more concrete in the last few years than the U.S.A. has in all of the last 100 years. Concrete production is a super-emitter of carbon into the air.

    Yet, it also takes 10 times the amount of rated renewable energy to close one equally rated fossil fuel plant simply because renewable energy is intermittent and fossil energy is not. It will be a physical impossibility to meet all future demand with 100% renewable energy and reduce emissions all at the same time. Half the renewable power in Europe comes from burning imported wood from all over the world. Rainforests are slashed and burned in South America and Indonesia to grow soy and palm oils that are exported Europe to burn in German cars.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/mar/31/subsidies-to-industries-that-cause-deforestation-worth-100-times-more-than-aid-to-prevent-it

    http://energyskeptic.com/2015/wood-the-fuel-of-preindustrial-societies-is-half-of-eu-renewable-energy/#comment-33460

    http://www.reddit.com/r/collapse/comments/39wy9g/why_green_energy_is_a_false_god/

    M.I.T. predicts world economic collapse in 15 years.

    http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2012-04/new-research-tracks-40-year-old-prediction-world-economy-will-collapse-2030

    Lloyd’s of London predicts the end of civilization in 25 years.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/society-will-collapse-by-2040-due-to-catastrophic-food-shortages-says-foreign-officefunded-study-10336406.html

    Collapse Data Sheet

    Collapse Data Cheat Sheet from collapse

    But, don’t you worry your pretty little head about any of this because there’s always our backup planet, Mars.

    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/06/01/project-exodus-critic-at-large-kolbert?mbid=social_facebook

  • JC Dolph- Well, since you’re in Bethesda it makes me feel a little bit better that you’re close to D.C., a legalized Green city : ) When my cousin went through chemo/radiation a couple of years ago, that really helped him out. He lives in Maryland and he was able to obtain some easily. I think it even helped him with the cold sensitivity that apparently comes with treatment. Hopefully you can get your hands on some (although something tells me you’re probably way ahead of me on that one). Hopefully Maryland implements the medical laws sooner rather than later.

    On another note, this caught my eye. Did anyone else see this? Not that it’s a surprise…

    https://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/08/11/1320245/-The-Pentagon-is-preparing-for-societal-collapse-due-to-Climate-Change?detail=emailclassic

  • From a few days ago – about one of the worst dams slated to be constructed in North America

    http://www.desmog.ca/2015/07/12/watershed-moment-chief-vows-be-arrested-fight-against-site-c-dam-scales

    From top of the radio news this morning at 8 am to on the way to being buried deeper than the Mount Polley tailings flood.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/fatal-police-shooting-in-dawson-creek-under-investigation-1.3156243

    slightly more context here,
    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/07/17/dawson-creek-rcmp-shooting_n_7815592.html

    All to provide electricity for heat for in situ “shale oil” extraction,cooling for LNG liquification, and non-diesel machines for mining activiities. That dam’s raison d’etre is a way to ponzi scheme the shrinking eroi via utilizing a mega dam’s hydro-electricity to finesse more petroleum liquids.

    And the oil pipeline spill with the brand spanking new pipeline in Alberta is getting short shrift also. Nobody wants to connect the dots that if a brand new pipeline designed to transport oil can break, how can we trust converting decades old natural gas pipelines to pump liquids – poorly studied “dil-bit petroleum” which can be more abrasive that standard crude oil. One word – Kalamazoo.

    In the “large scheme” – the above items are merely salt in a wound that has already been irrigated with sulfuric acid, But some days, some idiocies just rub me the wrong way.

  • Here is Philip Dick’s excerpt which often haunts me, from “The Man in the High Castle”. Implying that reactionary, so-called conservative politics are the real engines of the death/suicide cult:
    ===================

    Then it is in me, too, the psychotic streak. A psychotic world we live in. The madmen are in power. How long have we known this? Faced this? And — how many of us do know it? Not Lotze. Perhaps if you know you are insane then you are not insane. Or you are becoming sane, finally. Waking up. I suppose only a few are aware of all this. Isolated persons here and there. But the broad masses. . .
    what do they think? All these hundreds of thousands in this city, here. Do they imagine that they live in a sane world? Or do they guess, glimpse, the truth. . . ?

    It is something they do, something they are. It is — their unconsciousness. Their lack of knowledge about others. Their not being aware of what they do to others, the destruction they have caused and are causing. No, he thought. That isn’t it, I don’t know; I sense it, intuit it. But — they are purposely cruel . . . is that it? No. God, he thought. I can’t find it, make it clear. Do they ignore parts of reality? Yes. But it is more. It is their plans. Yes, their plans. The conquering of the planets. Something frenzied and demented, as was their conquering of Africa, and before that, Europe and Asia.

    Their view; it is cosmic. Not of a man here, a child there, but air abstraction: race, land. Volk. Land. Blut. Ehre. Not of honorable men but of Ehre itself, honor; the abstract is real, the actual is invisible to them. Die Güte , but not good men, this good man. It is their sense of space and time. They see through the here, the now, into the vast black deep beyond, the unchanging. And that is fatal to life. Because eventually there will be no life; there was once only the dust particles in space, the hot hydrogen gases, nothing more, and it will come again. This is an interval, ein Augenblick . The cosmic process is hurrying on, crushing life back into the granite and methane; the wheel turns for all life. It is all temporary. And they — these madmen — respond to the granite, the dust, the longing of the inanimate; they want to aid Natur.

    And, he thought, I know why. They want to be the agents, not the victims, of history. They identify with God’s power and believe they are godlike. That is their basic madness. They are overcome by some archetype; their egos have expanded psychotically so that they cannot tell where they begin and the godhead leaves off. It is not hubris, not pride; it is inflation of the ego to its ultimate confusion between him who worships and that which is worshiped.”
    ================

    I think this is what Jack Forbes would call wetiko.

  • To understand any culture one has to take it’s myths into account. What are the myths of the industrialized, economytized culture of today? Power, infinite growth, profit (nature doesn’t know of any “profit” at all), control, in one simple sentence:

    Godlike power over Nature.

    We are talking about solutions, yeah. What could those solutions be? Any technical wonderweapon? A new, miraculous way to generate more, cheaper energy? Geoengineering? Climate engineering? Well, that’s what happens since Sumer, Babylon, Egypt, Rome, Europe, America ect. What drives that machine of modern civilizations since ancient times? Slavery and exploitation. I don’t say that because of any political ressentiment against capitalism or whatever (I don’t care about politics anymore), I just say that because it is a simple fact. Look at any bigger culture around the globe and you will see slavery and exploitation, that’s the lifeblood of settled, industrialized cultures, no matter where on the globe. Today the slaves don’t wear any visible chains anymore, everything is much more subtle than in the ancient times.

    What is the most important myth of today? It is a piece of colored paper, loaded with magical power and it is called “Money”. Money is the most concentrated myth of modern Homo Economicus, it is the essence of his god:

    Mental, intellectuall power and control over man and Nature. But it is just a piece of paper, a contract, a Credo (the latin root of “Credit”), a piece of magic, of Hokuspokus. But without it you can’t get food, water, clothes, a hut or an apartement. Without money you are just mostly dead, it’s that simple. Tell me: What is this ?! A piece of colored paper is more worth than anything else on this planet ?! That is just NUTS, SICK, totally insane. This f…. piece of colored paper just developed it’s very own demonical powers, it got independent from it’s masters, you know, it became a REAL GOD. Now live or die with it.

    As long as this Money-God, as long as the myth of power, infinite growth, expoitation, profit is alive there will be no change of the main direction of this culture, it simply makes no sense to search for technical solutions while heading always politically, economically, ecologically in the wrong direction. It is about ETHICS, it is about JUSTICE- you can never ignore that while searching for technological solutions, it makes no sense, you can’t exchange Ethics for technology.

    Some days ago I have seen a comercial for a car on youtube: The care drove through a grey and dead nature and while it drove, the environment went colored and alive. So, the message is:

    This car makes dead Nature alive, that what kills Nature makes Nature truly alive. This is doublethink and doublethink is deadly in the natural process of natural selection, deadly on the way of a species on a planet. Just watch at any wild animal: It just can’t afford any doublethink twice, only dead animals can do that.

    So, if you really want to change this suicidal culture, you first have to change it’s myths, you have to fight against GODS in the very meaning of the word. Try it. I gave this fight against those modern Gods up, they just laugh at me all the time, they say:

    “ Man eats animal, we eat man.”

    So don’t tell me that Gods do not exist as long as you did not slay those modern Gods within yourself. Our passions are our Gods, they literally eat us and Nature is their cooking pot, this is not funny.


  • Some of you may enjoy Morris Berman’s latest post (and comments that follow), “Sensual Knowing”.
    He writes:
    “I am convinced that a lot of the suffering we endure can be traced to a loss of this primal connection with the human and natural environment. Recovering this would be what I referred to, many years ago, as The Reenchantment of the World. “

    http://morrisberman.blogspot.com

  • Caroline,
    I haven’t read the Berman post as yet. Paul Shepard made a very similar argument in his books,’Nature and Madness’ and others.
    E.O. Wilson in ‘Biophilia’ as well. Truth there.

    AJ informed us on the last thread that Edward Abbey had 5 children.
    Some example of ecological responsibility.
    The best ongoing joke is the specific epithet of the scientific name given to our species. We are definitely not wise.

  • Daniel-
    Coming from someone I admire so much, not only on this site- but on this planet, I am honored by your comments, inspired by your life choices and nobility of spirit.
    Sabine sums it all up so well, you are a brave soul and truly rare.
    Take care dear friend and know that you are loved and valued.

    Sabine- I would so love to show you the magical remains of that emerald forest. There are still natural hot springs in old growth remnants, cascading down into a series of pools so that you can pick the temperature you prefer. The air is fragrant with evergreen turpenes in mist. There is no way to convey it in language, but if you ever find your way here, please get in touch.

  • @mike k

    You never wrote any hate- comments, unlike some other commentors on this blog 🙂 Everyone becomes what he is doing, everyone is doing what he actually is, acting and beeing is the same. So I just look at what someone is DOING and I know who he actually is. You’ve always been a friend and brother to me, I always apreciated your comments, you just practice what you preach and that’s what counts IMO.

    Respect & Love to you!

    As a child I felt myself to be alone, and I am still, because I know things and must hint at things which others apparently know nothing of, and for the most part do not want to know.

    ― C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections

  • Caroline,

    Berman is entertaining in his own way, and he has it right — partly. His essay title, “Sensual Knowing,” is an apt description of our loss, but the sentence of his you used is a prime example of what he himself acknowledges is his own inability with language, especially to proper describe this lost primal connection. To wit, “a loss of the primal connection with the human and natural environment.”

    My point being, most americans are not lacking a primal connection with the “human environment” — although it is one we are all suffering to endure!

    And secondly, so long as one thinks to use the weaselly word “environment” as an appropriate descriptive modifier, respecting the sensuality of the natural world we lack a primal connection with, only compounds the error.

    I would have written: I am convinced that a lot of suffering we endure can be traced to a loss of the primal connection between humans and the natural world; or between humans and nature, between humans and wild Creation itself.

    Any and all “environments” are human made constructs best escaped from as often as possible. Trying to sensually connect with or in a “natural environment” is like trying to have a primal wilderness experience in a natural history museum.

    I think you know this. So do others here.

  • Curious,

    in your last comment you said this, among others

    “Some days ago I have seen a comercial for a car on youtube: The care drove through a grey and dead nature and while it drove, the environment went colored and alive. So, the message is:

    This car makes dead Nature alive, that what kills Nature makes Nature truly alive. This is doublethink and doublethink is deadly in the natural process of natural selection, deadly on the way of a species on a planet. Just watch at any wild animal: It just can’t afford any doublethink twice, only dead animals can do that.

    So, if you really want to change this suicidal culture, you first have to change it’s myths, you have to fight against GODS in the very meaning of the word. Try it. I gave this fight against those modern Gods up…”

    That YouTube ad you describe here sums up our truly insane culture in one. Thanks for posting it here, it’s very relevant.

    And you’re right, our myths make our man-made world. If you are interested in reading stories and poems which are trying to remake our myths, this website may be of interest to you (as you’re curious, and if you don’t know it yet) and give you some food for thought:

    http://dark-mountain.net/

  • Reading Haydukes Monkey
    mentioning the loss of the “primeval connection to nature” made me think about this beautiful poem by Paul Kingsnorth.

    Among other things, he’s a visionary poet (creating “new” myths). This poem encapsulates what we have lost and what words could never express – only thoughts. It’s called:

    The pool

    At the Dawn of Time
    was a pool which round two Men sat.
    Early Men, though they did not know this.
    Clear was the water in the pool.
    Clear were their minds, for
    they knew no different.
    They had no speech, only the use
    of their hand and their bodies.
    It seemed to one that
    the motion of the fever trees in the wind,
    when reflected in the water,
    gave life to its surface.
    It seems to him that the water was alive.
    He could not say so.
    He had no vision of saying so.
    Instead, he looked into the eyes of the second Man
    who, squatting, returned his gaze.
    It seemed to both that they were thinking the same thing
    which, being thought, became true.
    The water lived,
    like the Men and the fever trees
    and the things that moved the fever trees
    and beneath them, and at night
    above them.
    Everything lived.
    How could it not be so?
    There were no thoughts which said it could not be so.”

    I have a similar vision of what our early ancestors would have been like.
    I love this poem because it expresses our loss so beautifully – in words – which is almost impossible but I think Paul Kingsworth manages to do this so well. That’s what makes really talented poets so extraordinary.

    The Buddha’s “right speech” came much, much later, and this poem puts it and all spiritual books and “paths” into perspective.
    (By the way, Kirk, your speech is always right!)

    Dear Wren,

    Those remnants of Emerald Forests sound just the sort of magical place where we could sit without words, like those two early men but still knowing, communicating with everything around. Words are NEVER adequate.

    Something to contemplate

  • @Sabine

    Thanks a lot for pointing to http://dark-mountain.net/ , I will go through it as it seems to be quite inspiring, definitely food for thought!

    And thanks very much for remembering early man with this poem of Paul Kingsnorth, I can feel it very deeply, (not only) socalled “indigenous” people still have that connection to nature. Oh how I love Mother Nature! Motherly love, womens power/consciousness has to be restored for shure as most dictators and shit are men. We have to find the right balance of woman/man within ourselves.

  • I usually try to make my comments here short and to the point.
    But….
    Today, I will make an exception and reprint Part 1 of the Dark Mountain Manifesto, by Paul Kingsnorth and Dougald Hines.
    It is one of the most beautiful pieces of literature I have ever read, and brings me to tears each time. Those two were truly channeling from the Source. It starts with a quote from my favorite poet, Robinson Jeffers:

    THE DARK MOUNTAIN MANIFESTO

    REARMAMENT

    These grand and fatal movements toward death: the grandeur of the mass
    Makes pity a fool, the tearing pity
    For the atoms of the mass, the persons, the victims, makes it seem monstrous
    To admire the tragic beauty they build.
    It is beautiful as a river flowing or a slowly gathering
    Glacier on a high mountain rock-face,
    Bound to plow down a forest, or as frost in November,
    The gold and flaming death-dance for leaves,
    Or a girl in the night of her spent maidenhood, bleeding and kissing.
    I would burn my right hand in a slow fire
    To change the future … I should do foolishly. The beauty of modern
    Man is not in the persons but in the
    Disastrous rhythm, the heavy and mobile masses, the dance of the
    Dream-led masses down the dark mountain.

    Robinson Jeffers, 1935

    I

    WALKING ON LAVA

    The end of the human race will be that it will
    eventually die of civilisation.

    Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Those who witness extreme social collapse at first hand seldom describe any deep revelation about the truths of human existence. What they do mention, if asked, is their surprise at how easy it is to die.

    The pattern of ordinary life, in which so much stays the same from one day to the next, disguises the fragility of its fabric. How many of our activities are made possible by the impression of stability that pattern gives? So long as it repeats, or varies steadily enough, we are able to plan for tomorrow as if all the things we rely on and don’t think about too care- fully will still be there. When the pattern is broken, by civil war or natu- ral disaster or the smaller-scale tragedies that tear at its fabric, many of those activities become impossible or meaningless, while simply meeting needs we once took for granted may occupy much of our lives.

    What war correspondents and relief workers report is not only the fragility of the fabric, but the speed with which it can unravel. As we write this, no one can say with certainty where the unravelling of the financial and commercial fabric of our economies will end. Meanwhile, beyond the cities, unchecked industrial exploitation frays the material basis of life in many parts of the world, and pulls at the ecological systems which sustain it.

    Precarious as this moment may be, however, an awareness of the fragility of what we call civilisation is nothing new.

    ‘Few men realise,’ wrote Joseph Conrad in 1896, ‘that their life, the very essence of their character, their capabilities and their audacities, are only the expression of their belief in the safety of their surroundings.’ Conrad’s writings exposed the civilisation exported by European imperialists to be little more than a comforting illusion, not only in the dark, unconquerable heart of Africa, but in the whited sepulchres of their capital cities. The inhabitants of that civilisation believed ‘blindly in the irresistible force of its institutions and its morals, in the power of its police and of its opinion,’ but their confidence could be maintained only by the seeming solidity of the crowd of like-minded believers surrounding them. Outside the walls, the wild remained as close to the surface as blood under skin, though the city-dweller was no longer equipped to face it directly.

    Bertrand Russell caught this vein in Conrad’s worldview, suggesting that the novelist ‘thought of civilised and morally tolerable human life as a dangerous walk on a thin crust of barely cooled lava which at any moment might break and let the unwary sink into fiery depths.’ What both Russell and Conrad were getting at was a simple fact which any historian could confirm: human civilisation is an intensely fragile con- struction. It is built on little more than belief: belief in the rightness of its values; belief in the strength of its system of law and order; belief in its currency; above all, perhaps, belief in its future.

    Once that belief begins to crumble, the collapse of a civilisation may become unstoppable. That civilisations fall, sooner or later, is as much a law of history as gravity is a law of physics. What remains after the fall is a wild mixture of cultural debris, confused and angry people whose certainties have betrayed them, and those forces which were always there, deeper than the foundations of the city walls: the desire to survive and the desire for meaning.

    *

    It is, it seems, our civilisation’s turn to experience the inrush of the savage and the unseen; our turn to be brought up short by contact with untamed reality. There is a fall coming. We live in an age in which familiar restraints are being kicked away, and foundations snatched from under us. After a quarter century of complacency, in which we were invited to believe in bubbles that would never burst, prices that would never fall, the end of history, the crude repackaging of the triumphalism of Conrad’s Victorian twilight — Hubris has been introduced to Nemesis. Now a familiar human story is being played out. It is the story of an empire corroding from within. It is the story of a people who believed, for a long time, that their actions did not have consequences. It is the story of how that people will cope with the crumbling of their own myth. It is our story.

    This time, the crumbling empire is the unassailable global economy, and the brave new world of consumer democracy being forged worldwide in its name. Upon the indestructibility of this edifice we have pinned the hopes of this latest phase of our civilisation. Now, its failure and fallibility exposed, the world’s elites are scrabbling frantically to buoy up an economic machine which, for decades, they told us needed little restraint, for restraint would be its undoing. Uncountable sums of money are being funnelled upwards in order to prevent an uncontrolled explosion. The machine is stuttering and the engineers are in panic. They are wondering if perhaps they do not understand it as well as they imagined. They are wondering whether they are controlling it at all or whether, perhaps, it is controlling them.

    Increasingly, people are restless. The engineers group themselves into competing teams, but neither side seems to know what to do, and neither seems much different from the other. Around the world, discontent can be heard. The extremists are grinding their knives and moving in as the machine’s coughing and stuttering exposes the inadequacies of the political oligarchies who claimed to have everything in hand. Old gods are rearing their heads, and old answers: revolution, war, ethnic strife. Politics as we have known it totters, like the machine it was built to sustain. In its place could easily arise something more elemental, with a dark heart.

    As the financial wizards lose their powers of levitation, as the politicians and economists struggle to conjure new explanations, it starts to dawn on us that behind the curtain, at the heart of the Emerald City, sits not the benign and omnipotent invisible hand we had been promised, but something else entirely. Something responsible for what Marx, writing not so long before Conrad, cast as the ‘everlasting uncertainty and anguish’ of the ‘bourgeois epoch’; a time in which ‘all that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned.’ Draw back the curtain, follow the tireless motion of cogs and wheels back to its source, and you will find the engine driving our civilisation: the myth of progress.

    The myth of progress is to us what the myth of god-given warrior prowess was to the Romans, or the myth of eternal salvation was to the conquistadors: without it, our efforts cannot be sustained. Onto the root stock of Western Christianity, the Enlightenment at its most optimistic grafted a vision of an Earthly paradise, towards which human effort guided by calculative reason could take us. Following this guidance, each generation will live a better life than the life of those that went before it. History becomes an escalator, and the only way is up. On the top floor is human perfection. It is important that this should remain just out of reach in order to sustain the sensation of motion.

    Recent history, however, has given this mechanism something of a battering. The past century too often threatened a descent into hell, rather than the promised heaven on Earth. Even within the prosperous and liberal societies of the West progress has, in many ways, failed to deliver the goods. Today’s generation are demonstrably less content, and consequently less optimistic, than those that went before. They work longer hours, with less security, and less chance of leaving behind the social back- ground into which they were born. They fear crime, social breakdown, overdevelopment, environmental collapse. They do not believe that the future will be better than the past. Individually, they are less constrained by class and convention than their parents or grandparents, but more constrained by law, surveillance, state proscription and personal debt. Their physical health is better, their mental health more fragile. Nobody knows what is coming. Nobody wants to look.

    Most significantly of all, there is an underlying darkness at the root of everything we have built. Outside the cities, beyond the blurring edges of our civilisation, at the mercy of the machine but not under its control, lies something that neither Marx nor Conrad, Caesar nor Hume, Thatcher nor Lenin ever really understood. Something that Western civilisation — which has set the terms for global civilisation—was never capable of understanding, because to understand it would be to undermine, fatally, the myth of that civilisation. Something upon which that thin crust of lava is balanced; which feeds the machine and all the people who run it, and which they have all trained themselves not to see.

    For the entire manifesto: http://dark-mountain.net/about/manifesto/

  • Love. Curious! Long time no see. Missed your intelligent and sensitive spirit brother. Doing some steppenwolfing no doubt. We let our two dogs run wild in the woods where we live. One came back recently with a deep puncture wound, and had to be kept in for two weeks as it healed. Life has never been safe, from it’s very beginnings in the maelstrom of energies released in the Great Flowering aeons ago, to its precarious status on Earth today.

    I have something to share with the worthies gathered on this little strip of beach conjured up by Guy M for our potential enlightenment. Lest some of you should imagine that I am not learning anything during my visits amongst you – I have had an insight (kinda like a petit mal seizure!)

    Just to catch Curious up, I have been puzzled by the hostility that some have shown me here, and I tried to express it obliquely by telling a story I heard once:

    A recent fan of Alan Watts and zen visited Japan to see what the real deal was like. A monk volunteered to show him around the temple grounds. They came to a porch open on a sand garden, and having statues of some of the patriarchs of their lineage against the wall. As they came to each one the monk bowed deeply before identifying who the statue represented. Finally the visitor felt the need to show his understanding of zen, so he spat on the statue before the monk could bow before it. A puzzled look came on the monk’s face at this, then he brightened and smiled as though suddenly understanding and said, “I see – I bow, you spit!”

    Of course the monk didn’t really get it in full why the visitor would do such a strange thing, but he did his best to grok it in his own terms. I was like that with the hostiles; I thought that it was mainly a typical cultic reaction to one threatening a centerpiece belief of a small clique of ultra conformists. I still think that is true, but some things that Bud Nye (also a target of over-determined hostility) shared gave me a deeper, and more compassionate way to grok why these folks were so bent out of shape over someone challenging their tightly held belief in hopelessness.

    A key insight Bud shared with us was that surface emotions like anger often cover and conceal deeper and more painful emotions that a person is afraid to experience. From what those who were so mad at me have shared in their more relaxed moments, I have been able to learn that these folks are really very sensitive and idealistic people beneath their gruff exteriors. I think that some of them have been deeply betrayed and disappointed by their activist experiences, and by the utter deafness of the “world at large” to give any positive response to their well meaning efforts. In short they are embittered idealistic activists, and are using anger and resentment towards the fools who cannot see the light to cover up their inner pain. That they identified me as one of those fools, is ironic for me, but was enough to make me a lovely straw man to vent their spleen on.

    And BTW I have been there in spades for a long stretch of my life. My hatred of those who were destroying everything I loved knew no bounds. Of course at the same time, it was eating me alive from within and making my misogynist life into a personal hell. Part of the story of my life is how I dug myself out of that hell and several others I had contrived to inhabit. As Milton put it, ‘The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven..’

    Now I know that my sharing what I have will infuriate my tormentors and subject me to a new volley of curses and imprecations, but so be it – I’m just here to learn and share my thoughts about the truly frightening and maddening situation we all find ourselves in. If you find anything in what I have shared to profit from, be my guest…. Otherwise, you can just spit! Love.

    PS – Thanks for the Paul K. poem Sabine. He is pursuing an interesting path beyond his disappointment with “environmentalism.”

  • Sabine,

    Thanks for the poem. And yes, an old growth forest is a place to go and be in without words. As is true in all of nature if one cares to feel communion within it.

    When visiting a friend in California he took me to visit a redwood forest. While walking among the splendor of it all he kept yapping away. I politely but firmly asked him to shut up.

    Enough said for now. Nature calls me outdoors…

  • mike k- well, you’re really good at one thing at least- sucking the meaning out of words, and leaving them as empty husks, words like ‘love’ in particular.

    Terrence McKenna told this story once and it reminded me of you:

    There once was a seeker who worked for many years learning to walk on water, to make it to the opposite shore to see his chosen master. Years later, having finally reached that far shore, he approached the master with his story. The master’s reply, “You spent all that time learning to walk on water? But the ferry only costs a nickle!”
    .

  • ps for mike- ” it was eating me alive from within and making my misogynist life into a personal hell.”

    Judging from your extreme neediness, I always suspected you hated women. Thanks for coming out and openly admitting the fact.

  • Wren – Love. I knew I could count on you….

  • Love. Well Wren, I did learn something new from you. I thought misogynist meant simply hatred of everyone – which was where I was at in those days. Sorry ladies, didn’t mean to single you out. Back then I hated all people equally! And btw way what do you mean by love, and where am I off on that? I really am open to learn from you on that too.

  • Mike K you know what you say “it feels like I am back in the psyche ward once more” maybe it has been there more then once, I haven’t but just remember now only love remains This is your brain (?) and this is your brain on love (!)

  • Love. Thanks Guyo, I think….

  • Haydukes Monkey: Your comment (I should say your ‘eloquent prose’) above is an example of why I keep coming back here—–thank you for leaving the woods and taking the time to write today. Agree wholeheartedly with all you expressed.

    I’ve mentioned the works of Robin Wall Kimmerer before and will cite her again today as I think her feelings tie into what you say in your post:

    “Words have power to shape our thoughts and our actions. On behalf of the living world, let us learn the grammar of animacy.
    Objectification of the natural world reinforces the notion that our species is somehow more deserving of the gifts of the world than the other 8.7 million species with whom we share the planet. Using “it” absolves us of moral responsibility and opens the door to exploitation. When Sugar Maple is an “it” we give ourselves permission to pick up the saw. “It” means it doesn’t matter.

    Complete, delicious article here:

    http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/together-with-earth/alternative-grammar-a-new-language-of-kinship”:

    On another note, a lake I’ve had an intimate relationship with (yes, I love this lake and all nonhumans that live there) for most of my life was inundated with 2 4 D last week to kill Eurasian Milfoil. The “lake association” who made the decision to use 2 4 D did not inform anyone who was not a member of the “lake association”. My dog and I were swimming when we came upon the pesticide warning sign taped to the dock (“stay out of the water” which we were in). All the native vegetation is dying. The beaver that eats the lilies is gone and who knows what is happening to the native mussels on the lake bottom (some have been around for many, many years!) and all else . . . .

    I’m heartbroken and feel sick—–emotionally (and probably physically courtesy chemical component of agent orange). What to do?

  • Caroline – My apologies for butting in, but you should do Something to detox from that exposure. Check online, but my advice is do chelation therapy with huge amounts of juiced (organic) cilantro, and long bouts in the sauna, since many toxins can only be excreted via sweat. Interestingly, some other toxins are excreted only through tears. So crying helps too.
    What a criminal act to put that in the water!
    Best wishes to both you and your dog.

  • Those of us who have been following the unfolding global crisis – the converging, interlocked “wicked problems” of energy, the environment, economics and social justice – have become intimately familiar with the painful progression through the Five Stages of Grief described by Elizabeth Kübler-Ross.
    1. Denial — “This can’t be happening! There’s been some stupid mistake.”
    2. Anger — “This is simply not fair! Who is to blame for this?”
    3. Bargaining — “I’ll do anything for a chance at a few more years. Anything!”
    4. Depression — “I can’t do anything about it, so why bother with anything? What’s the point?”
    5. Acceptance — “Well, I can’t fight it, so I may as well prepare for it.”
    As I have worked within Stage 5 for the last few years, I’ve come to realize that Kübler-Ross stopped one stage too soon. There is an important stage even beyond the clear recognition and acceptance of What Is Really Happening. Often when we arrive at acceptance we are so relieved just to be free of the pain of our grief that we stop looking to see if any new possibilities may have been revealed.
    There is a fundamental principle in deep inner work that the greatest gifts are always found in the darkest places. The acceptance of an inevitable ending, whatever it is, can clear our vision and allow us to see previously unnoticed things that become the launch pad for new growth – for a kind of rebirth.
    The bigger the change, the greater its potential if we can just look at it with new eyes. We may find ways of moving beyond our old habits, expectations and judgments. We may realize that our old ways of seeing the world held us back. We may give ourselves permission to live authentically, as our true selves.
    As a reminder to keep looking for those opportunities, I invite you to add a sixth stage to the Kübler-Ross model:
    6. Finding the Gift — “Wow, look at the opportunities this change opens up! I may not be able to go back, or even forward in the direction I wanted, but just look at all the other possibilities that have suddenly appeared!”
    At first, I wanted to change things. I hoped to help put out the “fire on the roof of the world” or at least show people how that might be done. Later on, I wanted to wake people up to the fact that the roof was on fire in the hope that they would find a way to act. Both of those hopes have turned out to be forlorn.
    Now I have turned my attention and energies closer to home – to my immediate circle of community and my own inner preparations. My involvement with the global aspects of the crisis has largely shifted to watching it unfold, to making sure that any new developments are seen and understood by others, and generally acting as a shamanic witness to humanity’s transition.
    If we follow this shift in our attention and values, we will discover the opportunity to explore the sixth stage of grief, and we will begin to find the gifts that such great challenges always hold. These gifts include:
    Understanding that humanity is a special animal, and that both our specialness and our animal nature must be a factor in all we do;
    Realizing that we are a part of nature, not apart from her;
    Learning that our sense of control is an illusion born of fear, and that the fear itself is an illusion;
    Recognizing our personal and collective limitations, and reorienting our action within them;
    Awakening to the fact that change is not the enemy, but the nature of reality;
    Accepting that what humanity faces is not a set of physical problems, but the turmoil that always accompanies a transition from adolescence into adulthood.
    It is time for us to stop thinking in terms of fixing things that can’t be fixed. It’s time instead to begin imagining the best ways to live happy, caring, cooperative, altruistic, mindful, joyous, and even sacred lives in the midst of a world we have defaced forever.
    In closing, I would like to say that there is a very good reason that the concept of Surrender is at the core of all the world’s sacred philosophies. Unlike the Western interpretation of the word – “the acceptance of defeat” – this use of Surrender asks us simply to accept that there are indeed some things that cannot be done. If we surrender to the truth of our reality in this way, we are suddenly released from our attachment to the impossible, free instead to do the very best of those things that can be done.
    In this surprising reversal of meaning, surrender becomes synonymous not with final defeat, but with the opportunity for true victory. That opportunity is to find the gifts of insight that wait hidden in even the darkest corners of our experience.
    Grant me this day
    The courage to change those things I can,
    The serenity to accept those things I cannot change –
    And above all, the wisdom to know the difference.

  • @mike k,

    Thanks for re-posting that article. It’s one of my favourites, along with “Climbing the Ladder of Awareness”. They were written three weeks apart in 2012.

    http://www.paulchefurka.ca/FindingTheGift.html
    http://www.paulchefurka.ca/LadderOfAwareness.html

  • Long comment alert—scroll away!

    Wren,

    Thank you very, very much. I will take your advice —– just happen to have organic cilantro in my garden and if I do any work outside this evening it is instant sauna as there is an excessive heat warning (I know, it’s not the same!)

    Your comments (and others—too many to mention) offer such relief in the midst of climate chaos and dying all around. As I look out the window now I see dying grand old oaks—-at least 5 dying as I type . . . dying elms and ash too (oak wilt, elm disease, emerald ash borer, air pollution . . . )

    In the midwest today the air is thicker, more humid, beastly hot than I’ve ever experienced before —–it is this chaotic, moisture laden atmosphere that weighs heavy(literally)on the body and mind. Flood warnings, tornado warnings, heat advisories. I know that elsewhere in the world, it is MUCH worse (Alaska as only one example) than what we are experiencing here. Collapse a go go. It’s all connected.

    It’s hard to muster up the will/energy/desire to participate in anything in life these days when we are living in this extinction period.

    The projects I am supposed to help implement feel pointless when everything is dying. And this is not coming from a place of clinical depression —– most people see me as a somewhat “chipper” person. I still gladly get out of bed each morning to feed the birds and check the milkweed for caterpillars (more bad news on that front) and then on with the day.

    I can understand why Guy is driven to do what he is doing. What else is there to do? Get an advanced degree? Start a “business”? Write a book that will disappear with everything else?

    Yet . . . .

    As long as we are living, we need a sense of purpose and—–I believe—-it is so important to feel valued. Even here, if someone appreciates a link or a comment it feels very nice and (for me) is a lift to the spirits. Is this the ego or simply a human need to feel valued? Or knowing that you’ve helped someone even with something as simple as understanding what they’re experiencing?

    In any case, at this point I may generate haters as I’m rambling (maybe it’s the 2 4 D!)—–time to go outside in between storms and make sure the wren box is upright as the wren hatchlings are about to turn into fledglings!

    Thanks again Wren for your kind words and advice to detox.

    ps: as always, I appreciate being able to think about these things, write about these things without being desperately starving, thirsty, cold, hot, tired, terrified . . . when that happens I’m afraid all bets are off—-we will long for the good old days of cyber crankiness mixed with love, love, love at NBL!

  • Caroline,

    I always appreciate what you have to say, although it was disturbing to hear about your poisoned lake. I second Wren’s advice, make yourself some herbal infused fruit/veggie smoothies. So long as your dog shows no short term ill effects you both should be ok. Sorry tho for all those other aquatic beings whose lives have so carelessly been made to suffer such an insane man made insult.

    But don’t give in to despair. Does your dog? Tell him or her it’s time for a W A L K and I bet your pal does a twirl that sets its tail windmilling! It ain’t over and even tho it sometimes seems pointless your dirt embedded nails rooting out weeds is still needed. Hell, such a skill will be even more valuable after the lights go off. Just remember to stock up on toothpaste and you’ll be fine.

    I also invite you to check out Guy’s Beauty Salon / aka: Hayduke’s Monkey Lounge over across the hall in the NBL Forum. Although, recalling a bit of your family history, I hope you will not be put off by the virtual alcoholic beverages I am fond of serving up. It’s all a lark; one I’d like to think you can cope with. Your dog is welcome too! I’ll even set out a bowl of unadulterated well water for you both. The ice cubes will cost you tho! A story of some sort at the very least.

    Until then or there, or back here, be well.

  • Paul C. – Sorry I forgot to credit you for that K Ross update. It still helps me deal with our situation to read it. Thanks for your continuing efforts.

  • @Wren

    Thanks a lot for quoting the Dark Mountain Manifesto!

    Hubris has been introduced to Nemesis. Now a familiar human story is being played out. It is the story of an empire corroding from within. It is the story of a people who believed, for a long time, that their actions did not have consequences. It is the story of how that people will cope with the crumbling of their own myth. It is our story…

    The machine is stuttering and the engineers are in panic. They are wondering if perhaps they do not understand it as well as they imagined. They are wondering whether they are controlling it at all or whether, perhaps, it is controlling them…

    Their physical health is better, their mental health more fragile.

    Hahaha, so true, really wise statements!

    @mike k

    Yeah, I need to do some steppenwolfing from time to time, letting go of everything. From time to time I do not speak to any person for a whole week, no debate, no arguing, no talking, man, I really like that. When I am quite, then everything just speaks for itself and every answer to any question that might arise comes easily to me. Everything is there, I just have to listen.

    Life has never been safe, from it’s very beginnings in the maelstrom of energies released in the Great Flowering aeons ago, to its precarious status on Earth today.

    Yes, that’s exactly the way it is. No transformation, no Metamorphosis without letting go of any safety.

    About spitting on other peoples idols:

    It is always easy to spit on other peoples idols as long as those other people don’t spit on ones own beloved things or idols, isn’t it? I ask myself what that visitor might have said if that Zen- monk would have spit on the christian cross or on the visitors mother or wife in turn 😎

    From what those who were so mad at me have shared in their more relaxed moments, I have been able to learn that these folks are really very sensitive and idealistic people beneath their gruff exteriors. I think that some of them have been deeply betrayed and disappointed by their activist experiences, and by the utter deafness of the “world at large” to give any positive response to their well meaning efforts. In short they are embittered idealistic activists, and are using anger and resentment towards the fools who cannot see the light to cover up their inner pain. That they identified me as one of those fools, is ironic for me, but was enough to make me a lovely straw man to vent their spleen on.

    So true. So many people are just suffering or are trapped in deep self- hatred and they need to project that onto others. Let’s just have deep understanding for those people, but never cling to their hatred or identify with their projections, always keeping inner freedom and a friendly smile- it’s that easy if you think about it carefully and just let go, isn’t it?

    Hey, to extend the Kübler-Ross model is a very good idea, yeah, may everybody find that Gift of true Freedom!

    “ If I penetrate to the depths of my own existence, to the indefinable AM that is myself in its deepest roots, then through this deep center I pass into the infinite I AM, wich is the very Name of the Almighty.”

    – Thomas Merton

    “ “I Am” is the name of God.

    God is none other than the Self.”

    – Ramana Maharshi

  • Curious,

    Just this morning I was thinking that desire was unbecoming. Looking back at my own experiences with ego and libido, I feel sickened. How ugly and undignified it all is. What if all we ever needed was just to *be*? Nothing else. No goals, no ambition. And taking no more than was required to just be…until we couldn’t do that anymore.

  • Lidia; yes, “capacity” thank you. That’s better. My brain was fried when I posted (from stress). Like you, I’m involved locally which feels basically like hospice care—— palliative care for wetlands, lakes, woodlands. It does seem like the majority of people believe that “people are more important than dirt”. See Joe Romm: https://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/04/21/3648661/lets-rename-earth-day-3/
    as a prime example from a man who has a fairly significant bully pulpit.

    Hope you can hang in there with action against despair. I’ve met some amazing people (and some horrid people) as a result of advocating for the nonhuman world. Although I did start consuming way too much red wine (my interpretation of a glass a day good for your health was not 5 ounces!!) Large goblets after frustrating “zoning meetings” then tossing and turning at 2 a.m. —-didn’t help. From what I’ve gleaned of your writings here, you are a stronger woman than I, with better coping skills!—-just a guess.

    Sabine, as always, thank you for your posts. So glad you’re here (and many others as well) OT: What happened to Satish?

    Johnny Cash wrote the song at bottom of this post in 1974. Found this link of the song that lead me to another link on the devastation of the Indian River Lagoon in Florida. Toxins—-examples of human stupidity, hubris EVERYWHERE!

    Sadly, one can really only detox so much (aren’t we considered hazardous waste when we die? —- I think the average human as a least 27 hazardous chemicals?) And PCBs in the breast milk of Inuit women . . . .

    On a happier note, many monarchs nectaring on native plants growing in the former creeping charlie patch that was my “front yard” now turned into blooming, beautiful prairie. Caterpillars on milkweed too. Anyone have monarch reports?

    Over 12 species of birds singing this morning —–even in late July—- with vireos, wood pewees the most pronounced of the late summer birdsongs. For a time was in the bliss zone this morning, the oneness with life zone that is indescribable. I wish that for everyone here and elsewhere . . to be in the place (even if only for a few moments) free from the shackles of ego and fear.
    It can be found be gazing on a monarch caterpillar—-that simple (if you can find a monarch caterpillar)

    then there’s the reality of the 2 4 D poisoning the lake and more:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3ViLHtYFMA

  • @Artleads

    Well, I don’t think that desire or Ego or libido is “undignified”, there wouldn’t be a Universe without desire, no consciousness without Ego, no Life of any mammals without Libido/Sex. To be true:

    I love the Universe, I love my Ego and I love Sex/Libido 🙂 You would not be here without Sex/Libido, no Human, no Mammals at all without Sex/Libido. The Ego arises very early in human life, actually at the age of 1 ½ – 2 years already. Actually that’s also the time when sympathy to other human beeings arises. You could not write any comment here at NTE without any Ego, you just couldn’t do anything at all without any Ego, without any Self, without any center of perception, just ask any psychiatrist or just ask your very own experience.

    The problems arise when desire turns into greed, when Ego turns into egotism, when Sex/Libido turns into greed, into sexism.

    No goals, no ambition.

    But without any ambition to communicate you just wouldn’t write any comments here at NTE, you could not do anything without any goals, any ambitions, just every action needs goals, ambitions^^

  • P.S. @Artleads

    To try to get rid of any ambitions and goals is also an ambition, is also a goal, even to try to get rid of any action is also action 🙂

  • Haydukes,

    Thanks for making me laugh! The dog despairs over fireworks (me too), loud noises, the vet, people arguing, missing frisbees and, of all thing, flies.

    If I can figure out how to join you in the beauty parlor, I will. Not a computer whizz and I get frustrated with technology very quickly.

    And I’ll put in a request for a Brandy Old Fashioned sweet preferably with non toxic maraschino cherries and organic oranges!

    Caroline

  • “The problems arise when desire turns into greed, when Ego turns into egotism, when Sex/Libido turns into greed, into sexism.”

    Thanks, Curious. The idea in the above sentence is probably what I was trying to express.

    As an old man looking back, I feel pained at the many ego- and libido-driven “excesses.” WTF did I think I was doing!? Of course there are many non libido/ego calamities as well. So I’m not sure how all these things relate. What I feel now is the increased ability for restraint and detachment.

    A great deal of my behavior was completely out of step with what I would consider a life of excellence today (in the face of collapse). And though the tendency to error is always there, I’m more inclined to seek help now.

    So if we are at some overwhelming end point, what need for children? (I have treasured children–hypocrite me–but having children today would not be done with such lack of introspection). Other than “self actualization,” aka doing what you love, what need for ambition?

    Above, you talk of letting go. By your account, that’s ambition too. Well, my “ambition” runs along similar lines. But I think we need a different word for it than ambition.

  • mike,

    No harm, no foul. I’ve put all my writing in the public domain anyway, through the disclaimer on my web site and FB.

  • Curious – Love. The short formulas of mystic truth are like the basic equations of physics – they hide within them and beyond them an infinite depth of mystery and unknown dimensions.

    There is only God. I am That. You are That. Everything that exists is That. And there is nothing other than That.

    Is all that is clear and simple English sentences? Yes. But now the questions seeking deeper knowledge. What is God? Is their God separate from God’s manifestations? Is God simply good and wise, or is God also evil and ignorant.? How do we know that any of the above mystic formula is true? Is their a meta-position possible from which to evaluate statements about God? Is it even possible for a limited human being to know anything about this God? How can we be sure this so-called knowledge about God is correct? How can we know all that we don’t know about this God? In other words are we in a position to make final conclusive judgements bout this matter of God at all? Would we need to be omniscient to really know God in that Reality’s wholeness?

    Many more questions could be asked seeking knowledge of this supposed God. But is there a shortcut to the knowledge we seek?
    Perhaps revelation in higher states of consciousness could answer our questions? Indeed this is the answer that many mystic knowers of God recommend. Ordinary consciousness is inadequate to gain this higher knowledge of Divine Realities. An elementary example would be the experiences and realities of out of body travel. In order to know these realities, one must enter the special state of conscious needed to experience them first hand, and not only as ideas that may or may not be real. Even higher realities demand that one seeking them be able to enter more subtle states to know them directly.

    All that I have written is just to say that formulas, however true they may be are inadequate to convey any but the merest superficial knowledge to anyone who has not done the long and specific work to gain access to deeper understanding and experience of what the formulas hint at.

    Curious, you may already understand what I am sharing, but in my foolishness, I am saying all this for the benefit of anyone who might be trying to make sense of our dialog – mostly a forlorn hope in this venue. I guess I have to remind myself too that superficial knowledge that I have gained pales beside deeper experience. Those initially curious about deeper realities are often confused by the simplicity of these basic formulas, and so conclude, “What’s the big deal, it all sounds so simple…” Why would one bother doing all that meditation and practice if you could just consult an expert, and he would give you the answer? The reality is that no one on this planet has more than a tiny hint of the reality we call God, or Ultimate Truth. The depth of That Knowledge is way beyond our grasp at this point….

  • @Artleads

    As an old man looking back, I feel pained at the many ego- and libido-driven “excesses.” WTF did I think I was doing!?

    Well, I did some excesses too in my life, I was on hard drugs for 5 years for example. Biologically we’re all just animals, seeking for instant satisfaction all the time. But there is some difference between us and other animals: We are able to step back a bit, to look at ourselves, to look at our actions. We are able to THINK, to reflect about past, presence and future. This ability to think, this intellect can be for good or for bad. We can use it to exploit our surrounding, we can use it to cheat ourselves and others in an extremely effective way. We can use it to hoard money, to invent technologies that makes exploitation more and more effective. But we can also use our intellect to reinvent ourselves, to reinvent our ambitions, our perspective on the world, on others ect. This intellect makes us far more responsible for our actions than other animals are, because our actions can have far greater consequences than the actions of other animals.

    So I’m not sure how all these things relate. What I feel now is the increased ability for restraint and detachment.

    We are all here to learn, to experience the Universe, ourselves, others. We learn by trial and error. And when we did enough errors, experienced enough pain from our errors, we learn to restrain, to detouch, to widen our horizon more and more and more, infinite- if we are willing and lucky enough.

    A great deal of my behavior was completely out of step with what I would consider a life of excellence today (in the face of collapse). And though the tendency to error is always there, I’m more inclined to seek help now.

    Again, its our mind, our intellect what can ride us into shit and also can ride us out of shit. Help is always there, maybe we find it within ourselves, maybe we find it from others.

    Other than “self actualization,” aka doing what you love, what need for ambition?

    Well, if self-actualization means becoming freer, more loving, more caring for oneself and others, then I don’t see any other need for ambition.

    Above, you talk of letting go. By your account, that’s ambition too. Well, my “ambition” runs along similar lines. But I think we need a different word for it than ambition.

    Yes, the ambition to let go is also ambition. But why do you think there’s any need for a different word?

  • @mike k

    You raise the question of God. After all its just a word like any other word. For some people this word means everything, for others it means nothing at all. This is why I sometimes use that word and sometimes I don’t, sometimes I even say that I don’t believe in any God at all 🙂 , it depends on the person I’m talking to. Words are always vehicles to the things, never the things themselves.

    Many more questions could be asked seeking knowledge of this supposed God. But is there a shortcut to the knowledge we seek?
    Perhaps revelation in higher states of consciousness could answer our questions? Indeed this is the answer that many mystic knowers of God recommend. Ordinary consciousness is inadequate to gain this higher knowledge of Divine Realities.

    There is a Zen- saying:

    “ Those who know don’t know it, those who don’t know know it.”

    Obiously a paradox. Little children for example mostly don’t know much if anything at all about God- BUT: They are deeply within God, they are saturated with God without any “higher knowledge”. In that sense I think that one can gain Oneness with God without any higher knowledge. When I look at a flower I see the flower as beeing highly saturated with God, but that flower does not have any “higher” knowledge. When I look at suffering, helpless, dying human beeings, I see that they are highly saturated with God even if they don’t know of any God at all.

    DOES GOD KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT GOD AT ALL?

    An elementary example would be the experiences and realities of out of body travel. In order to know these realities, one must enter the special state of conscious needed to experience them first hand, and not only as ideas that may or may not be real. Even higher realities demand that one seeking them be able to enter more subtle states to know them directly.

    All that I have written is just to say that formulas, however true they may be are inadequate to convey any but the merest superficial knowledge to anyone who has not done the long and specific work to gain access to deeper understanding and experience of what the formulas hint at.

    Yes, out of body experiences or near death experiences can lead to “higher” conscience. Maybe we should not use the term “higher”, but the term “different”, it is about a change in perspective, about a widening of the horizon. Another way could be some drugs (you mentioned Entheogen the other day), but the problem with drugs is that we don’t have the cultural surrounding anymore to use drugs for Godsearch in a safe way I’m afraid. Other ways are meditation, poetry, music, art in general. Most important is to really listen, to really look, to really hear, to really feel, to really be open and attentive, regardful, without any prejudices, always remembering that every action, every single thought has consequences.

    The reality is that no one on this planet has more than a tiny hint of the reality we call God, or Ultimate Truth. The depth of That Knowledge is way beyond our grasp at this point….

    But if so, then it makes no sense that we are talking about God or ultimate truth at all 🙂