The Cycles of Nature
In nature, nothing is wasted. Leaves, excess fruit, even wild animals who have died, leech back into the ground to fertilise it, creating perfect cycles like that of sun and rain, day and night, summer and winter.
Our economy, managed by government and seemingly their ‘raison d’être’, thrives on waste and built-in obsolescence. It wastes materials and resources in creating incredibly inefficient machines and tons of health destroying plastic. It wastes and exploits its people. It produces mountains of toxic rubbish polluting the earth until the end of time.
Some people say that the effect of the economy is to dig stuff out of holes on one side of the planet, then put it back into different holes on the other side, destroying the local environment each time. The actions of the Myth of Economics poison the skies, the rivers, streams and oceans to feed the emptiness of the ‘hungry ghosts’ it breeds in order to line the pockets of the wealthy wetiko’s.
Our economy destroys peoples’ lives and keeps them enslaved and ignorant, spending their time in empty and meaningless activities, finding distraction only in leisure activities that once again serve the economic system.
The system has become a monster, a leviathan, trundling its way towards a precipice of environmental breakdown. And yet there is still no realistic option than to vote for just another aspect of the shadow puppets who service its machinery.
Life on Earth though, has been polluted before. In a book by James Lovelock, ‘Gaia, A New Look at Life on Earth’ he provides one example of total global pollution that has already occurred on Planet Earth. The prevalent life-form two aeons ago were ‘anaerobes’, organisms that can only grow in the absence of oxygen. The release of oxygen gas into the early atmosphere was “the worst atmospheric pollution incident that this planet has ever known.” Although it resulted in a ‘mass-extinction event’, it also heralded the beginning of oxygen breathing life forms. Hence:
“Ingenuity triumphed and the danger was overcome, not in the human way by restoring the old order, but in the flexible Gaian way by adapting to change and converting a murderous intruder into a powerful friend.”
Civilisations have fallen before. The mysteries of Easter Island and the Rapa Nui, the invincible Mayans whose cities emptied over the space of a few years, The Roman Empire are three examples. Nature seems to have cycles of abundance, followed by destruction and rebirth. Nothing stays the same – change is the only constant.
A report, written by applied mathematician Safa Motesharrei of the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center along with a team of natural and social scientists, explains how our modern civilization is doomed. Apparently the entire fundamental structure and nature of our society is at fault.
The report analyses five risk factors for societal collapse. These are:
When these factors converge to form two important criteria the report says that the sudden downfall of complicated societal structures can follow. All societal collapses over the past 5,000 years have involved both “the stretching of resources due to the strain placed on the ecological carrying capacity” and “the economic stratification of society into Elites and Masses”
This ‘Elite’ population restricts the flow of resources accessible to the ‘Masses’, accumulating a surplus for themselves that is high enough to strain natural resources. This situation will inevitably result in the destruction of society.
Elite power, the report suggests, will buffer ‘detrimental effects of the environmental collapse until much later than the Commoners,’ allowing the privileged to “continue ‘business as usual’ despite the impending catastrophe.”
There are a number of choices we can make when faced with the meltdown of our culture. Perhaps it is a good thing, after all, despite its brilliant attainments, because aspects of our ‘civilisation’ are exceptionally cruel. Those of us who can see what is going on, who see the battle between the ‘wetikos’, earthbound, cannibalistic materialists without any connection to the whole, and those of us who wish to fulfil our potential as humans, what do we do?
Whatever religion or politics you hold, there are only two sorts of people here. Those who want to make life on earth a great thing for all, and those who want to dominate and refuse to accept responsibility for their existance here.
‘Be the change you want to see in the world’ (inaccurately ascribed to Ghandi) is not enough. Surely the abusers will just keep taking until there is not enough for anyone. If you want to act (and most people won’t), then some kind of resistance might be in order?
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