Navigating the Climate Tragedy


The first time I read the deep adaptation paper (edited down in the following pages) it frightened me. Reading the words on the page made me tense, aggravated and anxious. I’ve spent a lot of my life dedicated to halting drastic climate change.  

If you don’t read the next pages, this is how I would paraphrase it in the pub—Nothing can be done to stop global warming and social collapse. Things are gonna change (soon) but we’re not sure how gnarly it’s gonna get. At worst every human will die. If we don’t have our panic attacks or avoidance patterns out of the way, we won’t know how to act when the moment demands us to and we will make a total balls of it—Life has a funny way of pointing out the obvious to us. It will keep showing you what you’re missing until it hits you square in the face. After my first encounter with the deep adaptation I suppressed it. I went about my work growing vegetables and took a moral high ground. “I’m doing more than my bit and what else can I do”- a classic denial technique. A few months later I was at a Dance of Universal Peace camp in the UK  where a lot of people gather for a week in the woods and dance and sing in mediative ways celebrating life and connecting to spirit. At this camp where they practised the Sufi dances I thought I was safe from any environmental process work. But who had been taken to the camp by his partner? Prof. Jem Bendell. That would have been okay but the camp coordinator recognised his name and asked him to host some workshops throughout the week. That put me smack back in the middle of my deep adaptation meltdown. 

By Matt Smith from Issue #4