I recently wrote Unrealistic Hope about the continued refusal of people and our government to come to grips with the reality of climate change even in the face of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
This led me to continue to think about what realistic hope would be. Even though dramatic changes are rapidly approaching which will make life much more difficult for us all, most of us (at least the fortunate among us) live in places of natural beauty and in some sort of supportive, loving community.
One of the wonderful things about humanity is how people respond during crises, helping those in need, whether they know them or not. I believe a realistic hope for our future is to create conditions to facilitate building self sustaining Beloved communities, where people anticipate and prepare for these crises. And prepare to help those who will not be prepared.
One important step is to have an accurate idea of what the crises will be and when they will occur. Research and education are needed, including calling out propaganda that hides the facts.
Based on that, we need to develop realistic visions of the future. We need to envision how we will meet the basic needs of food, water, shelter, education and healthcare for vast numbers of people who will be displaced from not only the places where they once lived, but from the very lifestyle they knew all of their (previous) life.
The hallmark of this will be the disappearance of most forms of convenience and governmental structure. We will be forced to do the work it takes to have supplies of food, water and energy from resources in our immediate vicinity. One thing that would help is having a local source of renewable energy such as an array of solar panels. Another would be to have a 3D printer to manufacture tools, utensils, parts, etc.
Perhaps the greatest challenge at the moment is to change the mindset of American culture away from materialism, racism and militarism. To return to an understanding that people and our environment are what are important. To reject the corporate gain and resource extractive mentality. There are hopeful signs this is beginning to occur.
We urgently need to develop, model and teach a realistic hope for our future.