Not Extinction Rebellion, But Extinction Reconciliation

Extinction Rebellion, or “XR”, as it is frequently abbreviated, is an environmental movement which is focused on using nonviolent civil disobedience to compel government action to slow the impending climate catastrophe. It was organized in the UK in 2018 and has spread to the US and other countries. Major actions were organized by XR in London in November 2018 and April 2019 when the group effectively shut down the city.

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“I Only Have One Prediction for You … We Are All Going to Die” by Dougald Hine

This is an excerpt. You can read the entire essay here.

We are all going to die.

… This is not an apocalyptic prophecy, it is only to state the quiet fact of our mortality, the undramatic reality of personal extinction that waits for each of us, sooner or later, somewhere down the road. Yet many of those who study or work with death have come to the conclusion that there is something strange about modern Western society and the way it handles this reality.

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“We have met the deniers, and they are us” by Adam Sacks

This is an excerpt. Read the complete essay here.

Even though we’re believers, not skeptics, our denial is far more insidious and subtle.  So subtle, in fact, that we’ve managed to convince ourselves that we’re not in denial at all.  Quite the opposite.  Why, the thought is too absurd even to contemplate.

But it’s true.

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New Michael Moore-backed documentary “Planet of the Humans” questions the false promises of the environmental movement

This is an excerpt. Read the entire article here.

What if alternative energy isn’t all it’s cracked up to be? That’s the provocative question explored in the documentary “Planet of the Humans,” which is backed and promoted by filmmaker Michael Moore and directed by one of his longtime collaborators. It premiered last week at his Traverse City Film Festival.

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“The Fallacy of Climate Activism” by Adam Sacks

Note: This is an excerpt, you can read the entire article here.

Climate activists are obsessed with greenhouse-gas emissions and concentrations. Since global climate disruption is an effect of greenhouse gases, and a disastrous one, this is understandable. But it is also a mistake.

Such is the fallacy of climate activism: We insist that global warming is merely a consequence of greenhouse-gas emissions. Since it is not, we fail to tell the truth to the public.

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Free Audiobook-Read by Michael Dowd!

I am excited to announce that eco-theologian Michael Dowd has created an audio recording of my book, Another End of the World is Possible!

You can find the recording here, along with his recording of my recent essay, We Did Start the Fire: Climate Change & the Curse of Hope.

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“It’s Already Too Late: Reflections at the End of the Decade” by Ian MacKenzie

The following is an excerpt. You can read the whole article here.

We are being asked to bear witness to the ending of days.

Lest I find myself categorized immediately as a ‘doomist’, I wish to say up front that I am not suggesting hopelessness. I am agreeing, as Martin Shaw has said, that we are in the Underworld, though many aren’t willing to know it yet:

“We still get to go on holiday, drink wine, watch beautiful sunsets. We still pay insurance and kids still go to college. But there is something happening. An unravelling. A collapsing, both tacit and immense in scale.”

Modern society believes that to be human means to circumvent every limit that opposes us — ultimately seeing death as a biological flaw to be eliminated. Yet, indigenous cultures the world over know the law of life to be the exact opposite —as Stephen Jenkinson says in Lost Nation Road: “it is the limit that gives us the opportunity to practice being human.”

By eliminating endings we have triggered the end of everything else.

“We are right where we were headed all along.” — Catherine Ingram

You can read the rest of the article here.

“Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating Climate Tragedy” by Jem Bendell

Here’s an excerpt from Bendell’s paper. You can read the whole paper here.

“‘Hopelessness’ and its related emotions of dismay and despair are understandably feared but wrongly assumed to be entirely negative and to be avoided whatever the situation. Alex Steffen warned that ‘Despair is never helpful’ (2017). However, the range of ancient wisdom traditions see a significant place for hopelessness and despair. Contemporary reflections on people’s emotional and even spiritual growth as a result of their hopelessness and despair align with these ancient ideas. The loss of a capability, a loved one or a way of life, or the receipt of a terminal diagnosis have all been reported, or personally experienced, as a trigger for a new way of perceiving self and world, with hopelessness and despair being a necessary step in the process (Matousek, 2008). In such contexts ‘hope’ is not a good thing to maintain, as it depends on what one is hoping for. When the debate raged about the value of the New York Magazine article, some commentators picked up on this theme. ‘In abandoning hope that one way of life will continue, we open up a space for alternative hopes,’ wrote Tommy Lynch (2017).”

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We Did Start the Fire: Climate Change & the Curse of Hope

We didn’t start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
We didn’t start the fire
But when we are gone
Will it still burn on, and on, and on, and on

— Billy Joel, “We Didn’t Start the Fire”


A couple of months ago, I went to see the premiere of the film, Anthropocene: The Human Epoch. It’s a visual exploration of the impact of industrial civilization on the earth. The movie opened on a scene of thousands of elephant tusks, recovered from African poachers, being gathered in huge piles. It looked like some kind of avant-garde art installation … or maybe an altar.

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