Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Point of View

The crucial approach to reversing the immense, critical impact that our exponential growth as a species has had on this world involves changing our point of view and shifting the scale of our vision. This 5-minute video by Joel Primack and Nancy Ellen Abrams, based upon their book, "The New Universe and the Human Future," makes the very succinct point that right now is the point of necessary inflection of the traditional human expansion and resource consumption in order to preserve our planetary resources for the future.

In urging us to make this change, there's no specific course charted for moving our point of view from a lowly, parochial way of seeing and moving into a larger framework that lets us arc over the globe and understand how to drastically restructure our living conditions and our culture to adapt to a needed dramatic change in our way of living. I think there's a way to sketch out this future.

First of all, understand the reality of the situation. Then take the larger view that we've been expanding upon with our necessary space developments and satellite network, those first fine filaments, and weave them into a viable industry that can accommodate our expansion yet focus its purpose on miniaturizing our impact and reversing the damage we've done. A very logical vehicle for doing this would be to take the vast resources of our military and corporate industrial complexes and turn them towards the objective of creating profitable and constructive industries outside of the biosphere that produce energy and the needed materials for industrial production, scientific research and exploration. These are the big payoff strategies for this world, not the annihilation of people and life on the planet for private profit and governmental gain. It would enlarge our focus and allow us to see solutions that are not readily apparent now.

The big view of our global culture finds that we've stayed too long in the resource extraction phase and have fouled our nest. The only way to harness the expansionary nature of our Darwinian impulses is to expand our wings and fly out into the bigger space of the solar system and the larger vision of a planetary network. We have to cease the destruction on the earth that we're engaging in for power and money, and turn to the values of life and regeneration, and re-frame our concepts of capital investments and understand the real risks of systems. This challenge will lay the groundwork for a shift in our human ideas about what truly matters.

And then we can begin to heal the environment and our society. It's a human problem, a problem of the dying natural world that's struggling under our weight, and a critical juncture in the kind of future this planet will see. We do have the power to make this choice now, as Primack and Abrams are urging us to do.