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Spirit & Eco-Community

Startling research on how people respond to the possibility of the end of civilization and the extinction of humanity

Lawrence's picture
Submitted by Lawrence on

Research done by Melanie Randle and Richard Eckersley (1) in the U.S., UK, Canada, and Australia investigated the perceived probability of threats to humanity and our different responses to them (nihilism,(2)fundamentalism,(3)and activism (4)). 

Overall:

  1. A majority (54%) rated the risk of our way of life ending within the next 100 years at 50% or greater.
  2. A quarter (24%) rated the risk of humans being wiped out at 50% or greater.
  3. The remaining study participants rated the risk of humans being wiped out within the next 100 years from 0 to less than 50%.

Across countries, age groups, gender, and education levels, the responses were relatively uniform. 

Here's what they also discovered:

  1. Almost 80% agreed “we need to transform our worldview and way of life if we are to create a better future for the world” (activism).
  2. About 50% agreed that “the world’s future looks grim, so we have to focus on looking after ourselves and those we love” (nihilism). 
  3. Over 33% believed that “we are facing a final conflict between good and evil in the world” (fundamentalism). 

Keeping these findings in mind about how people see the future when faced with the end of civilization and the extinction of humanity, it is paramount to examine your possible personal options below in responding to the global warming emergency that can lead to the same result.

The above leads us to our current global warming emergency that within as little as the next 30-50 years will lead to the extinction to as much as 70 to 90% of humanity.

Your options for what to do about the global warming emergency 

The A-F options below are those most commonly chosen after someone understands the true gravity of our escalating global warming emergency. You may choose more than one of these responses in some combination.

The denial strategies and options:

  1. Deny it and do nothing because it's overwhelming. Denial is an understandable and legitimate psychological defense mechanism when the reality is too much for that particular mind to bear. From experience at the Job One for Humanity organization, it was seen that many people struggle with the disheartening and difficult information of this book. For some individuals, complete denial is initially necessary to continue to survive with some semblance of psychological and emotional equilibrium. (At some later date, as their psychological and emotional equilibrium becomes stronger regarding this emergency, some of these individuals will choose to begin working on parts of the plan found in Part 2 of this book.)
  2. Deny it and do nothing because you believe the inaccurate or incomplete media coverage and advertisements deceptively forwarded by the fossil fuel industry. These types of media pronouncements generate doubt and confusion regarding the global warming science or the seriousness of the global warming emergency. At some point, when the real and personal costs of escalating global warming finally hit close to home, or individuals in this mindset are exposed to more global warming science, many of these individuals will leave the denier category and may also join efforts to resolve the emergency.
  3. Deny it and intentionally do nothing because you are profiting from the fossil fuel-related industries. These organizations and individuals will flat out deny almost everything in this book. These organizations and individuals almost always have a direct or indirect vested interest in the continued profitability of the fossil fuel-related industries or are being secretly or openly paid by the fossil fuel-related industries to create doubt and misinformation about areas of settled climate science. These “merchants of doubt” and misinformation are using many of the same tactics that were effectively used by the tobacco industry to delay laws regulating tobacco product use for almost 50 years.

To one degree or another, the denial strategies listed above are like the proverbial ostrich sticking its head in the sand, hoping that by not seeing a threat it will be spared. Denial strategies do not work for the ostrich and they will not work for us. The escalating global warming emergency will eventually impose its painful consequences upon any and all worlds of carefully constructed partial or complete denial. 

Reality always seems to have the uncanny ability to impose itself and overcome through sheer force and consequence any attempt to deny it. Denial almost always adds additional pain and suffering on top of the original delayed or denied consequences. Or in other words:

"Resistance is what you add to pain to make it last longer and hurt more." —Errol Strider (Resistance is a key form of denial.)

The acceptance strategies and options:

  1. Accept the facts of the coming Climageddon, but do nothing about it. This option is taken when individuals feel they have no real influence or control that could significantly improve the situation, or they are so preoccupied with other more pressing personal problems they have no time or bandwidth left for any other life problems. These individuals simply go about living their lives trying to have as much peace and enjoyment as is possible by simply focusing on their daily problems and ignoring the situations they believe they cannot effectively influence or control.
  2. Accept the facts of the coming Climageddonand do nothing more than preparing one’s loved ones, business, community, or nation for what is coming. These individuals strongly believe that the hope of resolving the escalating global warming emergency is so slim that it would be wiser for them to take whatever time and resources they have and dedicate all of them to preparing the appropriate emergency reserves and migration plans while also still trying to enjoy their lives every day as best they can for as long as they can. At some level, these individuals also believe they do not have the influence or control to make a real difference anyway.
  3. Accept the facts of the coming Climageddonand work for the best possible outcome for resolving the global warming emergency. There are many mature adults who understand that difficult conversations, facts and situations are just another part of navigating the challenges of life. They understand that if they do not have all the accurate facts, they cannot properly do whatever is necessary to make the best out of any difficult situation. These individuals are strong enough emotionally and psychologically to bear the weight of disheartening truths like those found in this book. They are also the same individuals who will quickly seek out and use the best plans and strategies available. They will not deceive themselves as to the costs, pain, or suffering that resolving any difficult situation entails. While these individuals work for the best, they are also wise enough to prepare for the worst. However, they will not make personal emergency preparation their main priority. They will focus the majority of their attention and resources on resolving the escalating emergency using the best possible strategies.

Before you decide which strategy and option you will use, please do not forget that there may be still some time and hope left to avert climate catastrophe even though the process will be extremely costly, difficult, and painful. There is also much we do not know about the global warming systems and subsystems that could provide some positive wild cards in our favor. 

If you have chosen the denial strategies and options

If you're one of those individuals who:

  1. is a denier or is overwhelmed by all this bad news, or 
  2. believes that things are truly hopeless, or 
  3. believes that you don't have to worry about what you can't control and you can just enjoy the present, or 
  4. is preparing for what is coming by protecting only yourself and loved ones  without acting to help slow, lessen, and resolve the situation,

then there are two more important ideas to carefully consider:

  1. By doing nothing, you shorten the critical time frame needed for more people, technology, and infrastructure to be successfully moved to the far north or far south so that more of the population can live a bit longer.
  2. Your inaction and/or your seeking personal comfort or escape from your moral, ethical, and spiritual obligation (if you are of a spiritual nature) to act is in fact, by omission, a form of contributing to the end of civilization and humanity as we know it.

If you are still a denier of the global warming emergency, your denial will also slow or prevent your own necessary preparation and protection because you believe there is no problem. Once our governments are overwhelmed by global warming’s continuous disasters, reality will rear its harsh and ugly head. Because of denial and your lack of preparation, you and those closest to you will receive the likely reward of suffering more and longer. 

On the other hand, if you're one of those brave and mature individuals who want to slow and lessen escalating global warming and then eventually work to end it (option F above), please click here to get started with the needed solutions in the Job One for Humanity Plan.

Still not convinced Climageddon is already happening? Watch The Most Terrifying Video You'll Ever See, Version 2. (5)(10 minutes.) 

The following was taken from the new book and global warming encyclopedia called Climageddon. Click here to learn more about this book.

In case you're curious here are some survey results on the key problems facing the world:

End Notes:

(1) Melanie J. Randle and Richard Eckersley, "Public perceptions of future threats to humanity and different societal responses: a cross-national study." Futures, 72 (2015): 4-16. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2015.06.004

(2) Wikipedia contributors, "Nihilism," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia,https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Nihilism&oldid=757224924(accessed December 29, 2016).

(3) Wikipedia contributors, "Fundamentalism," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia,https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Fundamentalism&oldid=758581120(accessed January 6, 2017).

(4) Wikipedia contributors, "Activism," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia,https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Activism&oldid=750786662(accessed November 21, 2016).

(5) The Most Terrifying Video You'll Ever See." YouTube video. 9:33, posted by "wonderingmind42," June 8, 2007. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zORv8wwiadQ

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