Woe, Despair, Agony on Me

Posted: June 4, 2007 in Consumerism, Culture, Environment, Ethics

From an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times called The Earth is Dying:

At the heart of the modern age is a core of grief.

At some level, we’re aware that something terrible is happening, that we humans are laying waste to our natural inheritance. A great sorrow arises as we witness the changes …

… changes [that] signal a turning point in human history, and the outlook is not particularly bright. The anger, irritability, frustration and intolerance that increasingly pervade our common life are symptoms associated with grief. The pervasive sense of helplessness and numbness that surrounds us, and the frantic search for meaning and questioning of religion and philosophy of life, are likewise often seen among those who must deal with overwhelming sorrow.

I’ve been reading too much recently about disaster, catastrophe, and threats poised to overtake us. The quote above describes how I feel better than I can.

This post is a follow-up of sorts to my previous posts called Malicious Ecophagy and Steamrollers. My latest awful discovery is something that won’t take time to manifest — it’s already a fait accompli:

A vast swath of the Pacific, twice the size of Texas, is full of a plastic stew that is entering the food chain. Scientists say these toxins are causing obesity, infertility … and worse.

The article this second quote comes from is fairly complete and doesn’t appear to require advanced scientific training to evaluate and appreciate. How any naysayers can explain away large portions of ocean (in each of the four principal bodies, the article informs) ruined and wrecked by human waste is beyond me, but let them try.

We’ve heard recently about how the decimation of the bee population could affect agriculture. How would the disruption of the aquatic food chain (from plastic waste), starting with plankton and proceeding up the cycle, affect a planet that is roughly 2/3 water? Although the article raises the specter, I’m not sure that anyone really knows, just as we don’t really know with certainty how global warming will play out.

At some point, perhaps I’ll stop reading these reports and adopt the attitude of the typical American: don’t worry, be happy. I’m not there yet, though, and in the meantime, I think it’s still worthwhile to bring these baleful prognostications to light so that we might actually consider heeding the warnings.

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Comments
  1. sushil_yadav says:

    Brutus,

    You have written about Consumerism and Environmental Crisis.

    The human race has been destroying/ killing animals, trees, air, water, land and people from the very beginning of civilization. Science and Technology has increased this destructive capacity millions of times.

    Every man is a serial-killer. The per-capita destruction of Environment – per-capita destruction of Animals, Trees, Air, Water and Land in Industrial Society is thousands of times greater than what it was 1000 years ago – 500 years ago – 200 years ago.

    Before Industrialization humans killed Environment primarily for Food. After Industrialization humans are killing environment for Food and [unnecessary]Consumer Goods.

    In this context I want to post a part from my article which examines the impact of Speed, Overstimulation, Consumerism and Industrialization on our Minds and environment. Please read.

    Industrial Society Destroys Mind and Environment.

    The fast-paced, consumerist lifestyle of Industrial Society is causing exponential rise in psychological problems besides destroying the environment. All issues are interlinked. Our Minds cannot be peaceful when attention-spans are down to nanoseconds, microseconds and milliseconds. Our Minds cannot be peaceful if we destroy Nature.

    The link between Mind and Social / Environmental-Issues.

    Subject : In a fast society slow emotions become extinct.
    Subject : A thinking mind cannot feel.
    Subject : Scientific/ Industrial/ Financial thinking destroys the planet.
    Subject : Environment can never be saved as long as cities exist.

    Emotion is what we experience during gaps in our thinking.

    If there are no gaps there is no emotion.

    Today people are thinking all the time and are mistaking thought (words/ language) for emotion.

    When society switches-over from physical work (agriculture) to mental work (scientific/ industrial/ financial/ fast visuals/ fast words ) the speed of thinking keeps on accelerating and the gaps between thinking go on decreasing.

    There comes a time when there are almost no gaps.

    People become incapable of experiencing/ tolerating gaps.

    Emotion ends.

    Man becomes machine.

    A society that speeds up mentally experiences every mental slowing-down as Depression / Anxiety.

    A ( travelling )society that speeds up physically experiences every physical slowing-down as Depression / Anxiety.

    A society that entertains itself daily experiences every non-entertaining moment as Depression / Anxiety.

    Fast visuals/ words make slow emotions extinct.

    Scientific/ Industrial/ Financial thinking destroys emotional circuits.

    A fast (large) society cannot feel pain / remorse / empathy.

    A fast (large) society will always be cruel to Animals/ Trees/ Air/ Water/ Land and to Itself.

    To read the complete article please follow any of these links :
    PlanetSave
    FreeInfoSociety
    ePhilosopher
    Corrupt

    sushil_yadav

  2. greywhitie says:

    brutus, you need to wake up and smell the roses, or whatever flowers are currently blooming in your neighborhood.

  3. Brutus says:

    As I said: don’t worry, be happy.

  4. greywhitie says:

    i worry about your happiness, brutus.

  5. presentpeace says:

    I’m with you, Brutus. Someone needs to keep ringing until people answer the call. I think people should worry less about any one person’s happiness and realize that, if we all fail to answer this call, we’ll never get to worry about happiness again. Keep ringing. Maybe eventually, before the line gets cut, somone will answer.

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