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Ecopessimism and loss of hope
#1
I have, in talking with friends, wryly called myself an 'ecopessimist' before. I'm the kind of guy who would probably be spiking trees or some such if I actually thought that works. Civilization is a mountain that no-one can move, no matter whether they have a mustard-seed or a aircraft carrier-full of faith. Essentially my pessimistic outlook is both the only viewpoint I can reasonably stand behind and at once terrible for my mental health.

so uh if anyone can find some hope for me to hold onto that would be cool and good
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#2
Personally I agree with Guy McPherson and Derrick Jensen that hope isn't very useful and just creates a false sense of security. I'm highly pessimistic about the outcome of civilisation and I feel like I'm in some kind of mourning for the rest of living world, I read about extinctions and destruction of habitat and I feel a deep grief. But all you can do is work from where you are and with what you have, anything else is wishful thinking.
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#3
 I agree to some extent too. I've given up hope on changing people's views these issues. While it's often possible to debate people about factual issues, these come down to values differences and are simply not something you can debate with a person. If someone doesn't care about the state of the environment, or is entirely content with the idea of getting rid of it entirely and uploading their brain into a computer or such, then there's nothing you can say to convince them.

As far as I'm concerned, I just want the ability to live in the woods for my family and whoever else wishes to do so. If society collapses it collapses, and even if civilisation had no chance of collapsing that wouldn't prevent me from wanting to live in the woods. Though I do think we've passed the point of being able to prevent a collapse regardless of how we live.

If there is a way to make it through it, it's by living like a water bear, or a cockroach, or a mouse. Live simply, flourish on the things no one wants, in the places no one else wants to live. And don't have anything anyone else wants to take.
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#4
(Sat, 29 Apr 2017 04:52:02 +0000, 04:52 AM)theunique Wrote: I have, in talking with friends, wryly called myself an 'ecopessimist' before. I'm the kind of guy who would probably be spiking trees or some such if I actually thought that works. Civilization is a mountain that no-one can move, no matter whether they have a mustard-seed or a aircraft carrier-full of faith. Essentially my pessimistic outlook is both the only viewpoint I can reasonably stand behind and at once terrible for my mental health.

so uh if anyone can find some hope for me to hold onto that would be cool and good

You might be interested in Taoism, Buddhism, or Eastern Philosophy in general.  Not necessarily from a religious standpoint (unless that does interest you).  Meditation, and living in the present moment are 2 of many ideas that might benefit you.
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#5
Thanks, theunique, for this great topic. I agree with what has been said here to some degree by Mouse and star_carr: I see /hope/ as partially a kind of political posture that one projects in order to try to move a mass of people in a certain direction; since I am not trying to move a mass (only to find cohorts on the individual and small-group scale), it doesn't have much to do with my life. I don't need to believe that things are going to get better on a major scale to want to do the anarchist projects I want to do. If things did improve on that scale, I would want to do them; if things never improve in my lifetime, I still want to do them. For me, this is reminiscent of the Taoist interested-and-participating-yet-detached perspective that jratliff is bringing up, with which I resonate.

I think it is a Humanist residue to think in terms of all-or-none, that either we win on the global scale in a semi-permanent way or else we have lost totally. It is a managerial, anthropocentric mindset to think that the world is something that has to be saved by us or else it is doomed (I'm not saying anyone here necessarily subscribes to that position – but many people do). Life is incredibly resilient: creatures like archaea, certain bacteria, tardigrades, and the like seem capable of surviving almost any horror that civilized humans can thrust on the world. None of this is to excuse the devastation or say that it is not worth caring about or resisting; it is just a reframing I encourage to recognize that life will go on and restore itself when this civilization stops actively poisoning it.

So, I don't frame my analysis and praxis in terms of what is happening on a huge space-time scale, which it seems the /hope/ paradigm is necessarily doing.
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#6
(Fri, 05 May 2017 16:39:20 +0000, 04:39 PM)Zhachev Wrote: The innate, intimate struggle against society never
decreases in either quantity or quality, but it does adapt
itself to conditions and is expressed in many different
forms. For example, at the present juncture there is a
tendency amongst the proletariat to express the rejec-
tion of capitalist relations through prolonged sickness,
depression, obsessions, fanaticism, drunkenness, inter-
personal violence... rather than say by marching through the streets in protest. For the left this recomposition
of struggle into an intimate bodily reaction feels like a
retreat—but they are wrong, in fact it is an advance, it
is a move closer to the proper ordering of perspective
and significance. Revolt is an intimate relatedness to the
world, and therefore most real at the level of immediate
feeling—it is really felt, it cannot be reduced to a mere
political perspective... Revolt is immediate feeling, and
it is feeling, or intuition, that serves the individual as a
means of orientation in a world organised as false. The
function of prorevolutionaries within the sphere of gut
feelings is not so much to prescribe politicisation as some
form of higher response as it is to invite others to reflect
upon the truth of their own personal anguish, and there-
by recognise their relation to the world. By means of
people attuning to their own feelings of revulsion for the
organisation of the world, the stance of revolt is clarified,
more fully realising a field for its engagements."

from Species Being



Dupont tends toward semi-incomprehensible word salad, in my opinion, but I really like the ending bit here.

Have you read Yang Zhu, Zhachev?
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#7
(Tue, 09 May 2017 00:33:21 +0000, 12:33 AM)Zhachev Wrote: A tiny bit. Anything you had in mind?

I've just read his Garden of Pleasure (which I believe is all that exists) - just a recommendation as he is less known and, I think, very interesting for anarchists/anti-civilians.
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