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Friday, September 9, 2016

The Pain You Feel

The Pain You Feel

By Sam Alexander
Adbusters.org
September 9, 2016

I was drifting through cyberspace recently not really absorbing
the words in front of me, when I came across a sentence that
tripped me up, so to speak, and forced me to pay attention.

That sentence read: “The pain you feel is capitalism dying.”

The writer went on to explain that it hurts because we are
inside this dying system, we are inside this unsustainable
form of civilization while it is undermining the life support
system we call Earth, and what is perhaps most unsettling
about this is that it’s not yet clear what comes next; nor is
it obvious that the global problems we face even have smooth,
painless solutions.

The hour is dark and a bright new dawn is not guaranteed.

The words left an impression on me I think because they describe
that strange, existential ache that we probably have all felt at
some time or another, when contemplating how we should live
our lives in a world that seems so tragically off track.

I am referring here to the emotional or what one might even call
the spiritual challenge of living in an age of crisis; of living in an
age when the myths and stories that have shaped and grounded
our cultures, and even our identities have begun to breakdown,
unsettling our sense of purpose and place in a fast-changing
world.

But this crisis of meaning in our culture, if I can put it that way,
presents itself to us, I think, as a heavily disguised but tantalizing
opportunity.

One of the most promising aspects of the biological world we
live in is that the cycles of nature embrace death and decay
as a necessary part of rebirth – as anyone who composts knows
very well – and if we understand this, then we can see that as
the existing form of life deteriorates in the face of environmental
limits, new ways to live will inevitably evolve, and are evolving,
like green shoots peeking out of the widening concrete cracks in
capitalism.

Our challenge is to face this inevitable breakdown with defiant
positivity and set about turning today’s crises into opportunities
to reinvent ourselves, our cultures, and our economies in more
localized, more resilient, more humane ways.

We are, it seems, like tiny microbes inside this massive,
decomposing system, being challenged to work creatively
in our own small ways, building the soil from which a
diversity of new worlds can emerge.

In short, I would say that we are being challenged at this moment
in history to compost capitalism, and in the rich soil of resistance
bring renewal to our task, our collective task, to seed a new Earth
story.
http://www.adbusters.org/highlights/the-pain-you-feel

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