A zen circle – image taken from http://www.craikido.com/circle.jpeg

Bring on the steady states and steady statements?

I’ve got lots of ideas for things to write and work on here at this blogzone and it needs a bit of an organisation and so on.  One of them was for a book called “Zero”.  This will be about the transition from the past millennium, the era of economic growth (particularly from the Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth century onwards) to the new millennium.  Given the depletion of natural resources that has already happened, and assuming that semi-miraculous inventions do not occur which allow us to transmogrify our systems and structures (such as, I don’t know, some sort of microchip-sized nuclear reactor with zero safety risk or ways of synthesising things like helium or rare earths out of banana skins – the kind of prospects I would personally be unlikely to bet on seeing in my lifetime, although wonders never cease and I doff my cap to all the boffins out there who can think and invent at such a level, since I personally struggle to work out how my can-opener works – and then who knows, maybe we could build that intergalactic human civilisation after all – but here I am digressing on multiple tangents as per usual), then it is now all but certain that the new millennium will be one without economic growth.  This is, therefore, the era of ecological economics rather than traditional economics and the change is affecting and will affect every single part of our civilisations and cultures.  The change is as sharp and all-embracing as the Copernican revolution or the invention (or discovery) of the number zero.  There have been lots of great writers and people of practical action who have explored this new world in great depth and have pioneered our changing collective consciousness.  I have done a quick reading list in graphical format of some below, which is not exhaustive by any means (and I have not yet had a chance to read any of these authors in proper depth and detail).

As CHRIS MARTENSON amongst others points out, given that it took us from the beginning of human history to about 1960 to get to three billion people on the planet, and then given that between then and today we have added another four billion (which has all been in part the product of the oil era from the mid to late 19th century onwards, which is only an eyeblink in the history of humanity as a whole) – and given that in the past 20 or so years we have consumed half of all the oil consumed in all of human history – then we clearly have our work cut out in making the transition to the new realities of the new millennium as harmonious and peaceful as possible.  Our capacity for invention, intelligence and ingenuity is amazing.  We certainty need all three.