Ran Prieur

“I don’t believe a big “Crash” is coming. I think we’re already in it and this is what it looks like: a steady series of changes in the background of our daily lives, with occasional local catastrophes. The new world will replace the old by growing through its cracks.”

Ran Prieur summarizes his thinking (from the Ran Prieur website):

The objective physical universe is a mental construct of limited usefulness. Reality itself has the structure of a dream — and the Dreamer has depths that we cannot imagine. “You” and “I” are like two fingertips that don’t know there’s a body — and that “body” is probably the fingertip of an even larger body, and so on…

So I agree with religion that our world arises from awareness, intelligence, and intention — but I also agree with science that reality is improvised and full of experiments and mistakes. Sometimes the mistakes are epic. We are in one now. If the biosphere is a body, then industrial civilization is a cancer, in which disconnected selfish cells multiply and consume and destroy and call it “progress.”

Civilization was not a fluke — given human intelligence and mutability, it was inevitable that we would find a way to systematically extend our power beyond our wisdom. And civilization is not all bad — it has led to valuable innovations and learning. What I don’t know is whether we will learn our way out of cancerous behavior, and if so, how long it will take us.

I don’t believe a big “Crash” is coming. I think we’re already in it and this is what it looks like: a steady series of changes in the background of our daily lives, with occasional local catastrophes. The new world will replace the old by growing through its cracks. The age of perpetual “growth” is over, but complex societies will continue as long as humans do, and there is no end to change or trouble or opportunity. No matter what happens, you always have another move. (From the author’s website.)

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