January 17, 2013
The relationship of energy scarcity and finance, exacerbated by climate change, appears to be a looming threat. What some call "peak oil" is but one part of this. We are witnessing an age of limits of all sorts. William R. Catton named the dilemma of our time as "overshoot": as the demands on our world outstrip its carrying capacity all kinds of problems emerge amid competition for basic needs and societal breakdown.
How to keep a foot in both worlds -- to live in a suburban house on the grid, while at the same time building up resources and skills to draw upon should things change? How to maintain balance emotionally and spiritually so as to be centered and clear-minded, and not drawn to extremes? How to teach our children what they need to know to prosper and even enjoy the collective "long descent"?
Growing up with hippie parents, I took self-sufficiency for granted -- and lived in a variety of places from suburbia to a tar paper shack. Now I have a family of my own and a growing need to build resiliency and find community.