I will begin at the end. The last sentence in Jason Hickel’s new book is “We have everything to lose and a world to gain.” We have always had everything to lose, perhaps, but it is only relatively recently that we have, and by “we” I mean we of the so-called First World, drifted so far into a mass delusion that we no longer live in “the world.” We live off the world, enjoying lifestyles that depend on long supply chains which we barely realize exist. We have developed elaborate intellectual structures to deny that the world matters or has any standing except as a extraction site or a dump. To mainstream political and economic thinking, the world is not a factor in any discussion of goals and values. The world as foundational to our being, much less as a full subject with intrinsic value to itself, has no place in mainstream thinking. It is a resource, a dead corpse on which we feed. This is our Achilles’ heel, our fatal blind spot. It has been built into our intellectual tradition for millennia. It is our daunting task to alter that tradition, change the intellectual DNA of our civilization, and re-learn the values and aspirations that animate our daily lives. Jason Hickel’s book is an important contribution to that effort. Continue reading “Animism Reborn: A Review of Jason Hickel’s Less is More: How Degrowth Will Save the World”
Happy New Year everyone!
I have been super remiss in not giving a shout-out to the amazingly talented folks at Anima Monday, which I like to think of as a sister-blog. (I’ve been super distracted, more on that later.) I’m in love with all of them over there. Go visit now!
This week they have posted an interview with Emma Restall Orr, whose book, The Wakeful World, takes animism to the gladiator ring of Western philosophy in the Academy. Not for the faint of heart, such an endeavor! And Orr does it admirably, with heart as well as intellectual rigor.
But the contributors to Anima Monday are her equal in their wild, fierce, generous, and humble insights into what it means to live in this world, fully alive, fully present, and in love with life, in all its glory and pain.
Animists of the world unite! 🙂
For we cannot think like Indians; at most, we can think with them. – Eduardo Viveiros de Castro, Cannibal Metaphysics
As far back as I am able to think, to remember, which is a kind of thinking, there are memories of places, of plants and animals, of a kind of light and air, the smell of water on leaves, root and dirt, the strange sight of lava flows reaching the sea, the band of white coral touching blue ocean, of roads leading through orchards, of flowers against the sky, of moss-covered rocks and river pebbles.
I have these myths. These are my myths. Continue reading “Metamorphic: for all the Wild Ones”
anthropomorphic: ascribing human form or attributes to a being or thing not human, especially to a deity. – – Dictionary.com
I’m at mass in a Catholic church: a beautiful, modern church filled with flowers, warm wood panelling and richly colored stained glass. Continue reading “Anthropomorphic”