As storytellers, we plant beliefs that blossom into the structure of the world. In these times, we need a new structure—a narrative built on climate justice.
Now, here in a changed world with a broken-open heart, I look into the eyes of beauty and invite in the fullness of it all, the grief and the love, the fear and the hope, the pain and the joy.
What we know and what we have good grounds to fear about climate change calls our way of living into question. To take this evidence seriously leads to difficult questions about the stories we have been telling about the shape of history, the nature of the world in which we find ourselves and the virtue of achievements in which we have taken pride.
This condition of wondering is still absolutely intact in us. It is. Amongst the loaded shopping trolleys of Walmart and Tesco, the fluorescent tech hubs, flicker-screens and finger-beckoning apps, it’s still there. This raw, imaginative, holy thing.
There’s an audacity to it, but it’s what we’ve always done.
But I feel like this story is really the story of our lifetime and our planet. It’s the story that crosses every boundary that we humans have artificially put upon the world. Anybody who can be engaged in dealing with it, on any level, should do that. And so, being a journalist, I feel it’s my responsibility to tell these stories.
Modern economic systems have sanctified the payment of debt but this is not some natural or God-given rule, rather a situation designed by financial elites. The wisdom of Rumpelstiltskin needs to be revisited and adapted for modern times.
The three R’s of Deep Adaptation are tasks, they demand we leave a lot of our identity and cleverness behind, our comfort zones, our egoic insults, the traumas we cling to like antiquated gas masks, long after the war is over.
Storytelling is a powerful political tool. Becoming better storytellers has been shown to make a huge difference to the impact and efficacy of activist groups and campaigns.
A murdered ranch employee. A vanished suspect. A stolen rodeo horse. A black helicopter. Angry environmentalists. Menacing oil-and-gas developers. A Sasquatch hunter gone astray. A mysterious billionaire. A missing can opener…
What are the unhealthy stories that we tell now? The story of unlimited growth. The story that we are separate. Any number of stories about who we are and our place in the world, and what it means to be alive.
Stories have always had an important place in human history. According to Yuval Noah Harari, author of the book Sapiens, ‘Any large scale human cooperation – whether a modern state, a medieval church, an ancient city or an archaic tribe – is rooted in common myths that exist only in people’s collective imagination’.
Stories can indeed change the world — and if they are used carefully, wisely, and with love, they can change it for the better.