Blog entry by Alan Chapman
Cooperation and Life on Earth
Life will go on. The extent to which this includes us (humans) is our choice.
The COVID-19 pandemic, regardless of what it is and how it brought human life to this unique pause, offers the opportunity for new thinking and ways of living to emerge.
This seems to be happening, although it's not a straight line, nor even a line.
Fractals (infinite patterns within patterns) is a good description.
For example, please consider (explanatory references at footer):
- Obligate mutualism (two connected things that cannot survive without each other)
- Facultative mutualism (two connected things that can apparently survive without each other)
- 'Wet-bulb' weather events (high temperature and high humidity, preventing the human body from cooling through sweat evaporation)
Until the COVID-19 pandemic, humanity was continuing to behave according to facultative mutualism, i.e., as if humanity could continue to act independently of the ecosystem and wider universe (especially the Sun, bacterial organisms, knowledge and what keeps us well).
In the reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic (lockdowns and slow-downs, suspension of globalization, etc) humanity has unwittingly shifted towards obligate mutualism, i.e., basically reversing much of the globalization and consumption and economics that have characterized human development in recent decades; certainly since the 1950s, and actually since the industrial and agricultural revolutions.
Please think about the above.
Whatever the truth of climate change and wider debates about the future of humanity, it is an undeniable fact that humanity in its present form will not win a survival battle against the ecosystem and wider universe (especially the Sun, time, space, bacterial organisms, etc).
This summer, 2020, or a summer very soon, we are likely to see and/or personally experience wet-bulb weather events in many parts of the world, including northern Europe.
I suspect that too many people (and certainly political and economic leaders) will continue to support our governing systems returning to 'business as normal', i.e., thinking that humanity can exist and thrive regardless of how we impact on and disregard the ecosystem and wider universe.
All sensible interpretations and common sense suggest otherwise.
Change is emerging. Will it be enough?
The question, really, is:
How many of us, and even if any of us, will ultimately survive?
Happily, or sadly, it is our choice.