Contrary to its self-conception, Extinction Rebellion is not actually about climate change. The climate issue is, rather, the vehicle for the expression of a deeper yearning. Greta Thunberg and the climate strikers embody a refusal to comply with a system that is anti-life. “I will not go to school. I will not participate in this. I want no part of the program.”
Like a lot of people, I’ve been deeply affected by what’s been happening in the Amazon in 2019.
Deforestation has reached double the rate of last year, as the red line of logging and fires, many of them set deliberately to clear land for soybeans and cattle, encroaches deeper and deeper into the heart of the Amazon rainforest.
Armed land-grabbers are dislocating Indigenous people and killing those who resist. Even legally protected lands are getting logged and destroyed. It’s just horrifying. And I feel, sometimes, these waves of helplessness, like watching a car wreck in slow motion. The grief is so strong – what do I do with it?
We have to let go of war thinking with its accompanying dehumanization, and enter the question that defines compassion: What is it like to be you?
Each time you refuse the invitation onto the warpath, you become more powerful. Those who can stay peaceful in the face of any terror or threat become virtual miracle-workers.
“Brother, your soul is too beautiful to be doing this work.” If we can stare hate in the face and never waver from that knowledge, we will access inexhaustible tools of creative engagement, and hold a compelling invitation to the haters to fulfill their beauty.
The Brexit vote marks a rare moment of discontinuity, when the usual normalizing narratives falter and a society experiences a fertile and frightening moment of bewilderment.