Updated: Jan 22, 2022
I wrote this as an "Op-Ed. It was time for a new one, which is up. So, this is a revised version as a blog post.
The Mortality Plateau
If you make it to 80 in good health, there is a "mortality plateau", with the risk of death declining over the next few decades. Yes, you can live to 120!
if you are older than 70 today, you may see your grandchildren die before you. But you are not immortal.
A kid born today faces: pandemics and disease, war, starvation, and rising temperatures that will make many parts of the world uninhabitable.
Our civilization has an imperial mindset: it seeks to conquer--everything-- especially Nature. But Nature fights back--and always wins--keeping in mind that "nature" is not extrinsic, it is as much inside as outside. If we don't' pay attention to both our own "nature" and that of the ecosystem, we die.
Yet, that does not have to be.
We evolved to be a certain kind of animal. Highly social -- playful-- always learning and developing -- bound to each other by love and understanding and sharing -- and bound to the natural world in the same way.
That's when we were hunters and gatherers. Then came climate change, migrations, and adaptation to sedentism, the invention of agriculture and animal husbandry, slavery, property, hierarchies....in a word, civilization. "Normal" and "natural" became two different things.
Now, we face climate change again. Neoliberal civilization is collapsing. Once again we must adapt.
How will we survive?