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You – The Climate Psychologist
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The Climate Psychologist

You


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What will I do with the knowledge that climate change threatens civilization? 

This is the question of our age. It is a question for our species, and for each of us individually. Variants of this question of questions include: How do I integrate this terrifying knowledge into my everyday life and my plans for the future? How do I reach out to other people and change their minds? How can I get political about this issue? What impact can I possibly have?  Is this really my responsibility?  Can’t I just be neutral? Is there any hope? Where do I go from here? What now?

This blog will explore this question-of-questions, attempting to help readers clarify their thinking and overcome their cognitive and emotional blocks to living in climate truth and becoming socially and politically active around the topic.

To that end, I want to encourage reader participation and exploration. Some ways to get involved:

  • Consider joining or supporting  The Climate Mobilization. This is a social movement strategy that is built on the analysis that I conduct on this blog. It is, hopefully, a social organizing platform that can cut through the fog of denial and willful ignorance by leveraging existing relationships and prompting people to make a public, political commitment to dramatic action.
  • Educate yourself. The more you learn about climate change and the myriad related topics (i.e., clean energy, politics, social movements, agriculture), the more effectively you can tackle the question of what to do, individually. You will also become a more effective advocate.
  • Create (or join) a Climate Change Reading Group. I am in a weekly group that reads books about climate change and related topics. It is empowering to continually increase my level of knowledge about climate change, and inspiring to speak frankly and openly with friends about this difficult issue. I will be discussing and reviewing books on this blog, and will make recommendations for book groups that don’t know where to start.
  • Look inward as well. Interrogate yourself regarding your emotional response to climate change. Explore ways that you may be in denial. The Facebook group Climate Change, It’s Personal is a forum where people can achieve this introspection together.
  • Write in. Write comments responding to specific posts, or write to me personally. I am always interested in  people’s’ mental and emotional processes of  responding to climate change. I am also interested in reader contributions for developing social movement strategies. I may ask you if I can respond publicly to your letter, adding my comments and perspective.
  • Live in Climate Truth. Our most powerful weapon in creating the Human Climate Movement is the truth. The truth is on our side. But to spread this truth, to capture its revolutionary potential, it cannot just be known, it has to be lived. Each individual who forsakes denial and lives in Climate Truth will impact many others. Living in Climate Truth constitutes a formidable, ongoing emotional, intellectual, and social challenge. Living in Climate Truth has different implications for different people. You must ask yourself, “How can I help fight denial and instigate a social movement: What are my skills, my resources, my connections? How can I most effectively fight back?”

 

 

3 thoughts on “You

  1. Crista Carr Shatz

    Perhaps leadership from the rest of the world will help the USA grapple with our collective denial.
    What are your COP21 expectations?
    Are you familiar with Kari Norgaard? Panel speaker at Climate One “Climate Cognition”. Is this relevant for you? I found it the most useful podcast I have heard. In fact, it led me to discover you.

  2. Dave MacQuarrie

    I’m a retired physician-psychotherapist, mainly Gestalt, Family Systems, and NLP. Mainly I did anger management for 25 years. Wanting to “retire,” I switched to do my PhD, studying laziness, fearfulness and self-righteousness (all subsumed under an ancient term acedia), and turned the dissertation into my second book Acedia, The Darkness Within, and the darkness of climate change (my first book was Blowing Out the Darkness: The Management of Emotional Life Issues, Especially Anger and Rage). If you would like, I can send you an electronic copy of Acedia.
    During and since then, I have been working through my existential angst, and now want take my skill set out into the world to help transform the culture. I’m currently doing workshops on Blowing Out The Darkness and The Bottom Line: The Management of Burnout. check out my website http://www.aplacetwobe.ca and blog http://www.thehumansideofglobalwarming.com.
    I totally agree with the need for emergency mobilization — the risks of positive feedback loops are far too great — and disastrous if they occur.
    So, what can we do to network? meet? (not geographically likely) Skype? (very possible) Email (dave.macq@icloud.com)

  3. ellen bernstein

    Jill Kaufman referred me to you. I’m interested in being involved but can’t figure out how to connect with you for a conversation. I founded the first nat’l Jewish enviro org in 1988 and speak and teach on Religion/Bible and ecology/environment. I have 30 hours a week to give. Please email me.
    Thanks!
    Ellen B.

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