Post: a hint of optimism amid all the gloom

Doom and gloom for our planet’s future. That’s all we hear about.

Climate change is forcing nature to change faster than it ever has; climatic events are becoming more brutal and frequent; all our natural resources are literally going up in smoke; the panda is dying out…

You all know the issues and what needs doing. Actually people keep finding new ways to “be at one with nature”: Live with no oil, eat like rabbits, walk everywhere, hug trees (that last one might not help too much)….

I am trying to be light hearted because I can see that for most people with limited influence and financial means, living completely sustainably is simply not possible. The everyday costs of living a “green” life are prohibitive and downright ludicrous (especially for the majority of  families in a never-ending recession hit economy). One cannot stop using everyday appliances such as the internet, the washing machine or electric kettle. Our adherence to a modern, fast, technophilic life further increases our carbon footprint. We are trapped in a cycle that has become impossible to escape from.

However, the doom and gloom networks (from hard working climatologists to headline craving journalists) have made us aware of how aggressively we are damaging our present environment. We are trying to change our ways slowly but surely: some become veggie, or work on environmental causes; others will walk one mile instead of taking the bus. We all feel we could do more. Given the chance to act, we would.

I find this very encouraging.

So if you feel you aren’t doing enough, you have to change. Improvement starts at home, and home can mean you , your household or your community. You may even influence or inspire someone else to do so as well. But do not become so obsessed with worldly issues that you forget how to enjoy your life, and let others enjoy theirs. Work towards what you feel is important without enforcing your values on someone else.

Mankind’s biggest assets are its communal spirit, intelligence and adaptation skills. Happiness that comes with trying to live a green life and helping, not enforcing, others to do so is more valuable than misery and depression at a world that you can only change so much of. Perhaps Epicurus, who valued pleasure as the greatest good, was onto something…

We are human beings. We are not perfect, perhaps quite strange, but we will endure and adapt, or die out. At the end of the day, we are just another species: nature will move on.

Do the best you can to save the world but enjoy yourself


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