Great piece Russ.

I don't know about you but this is an approach that might have once felt alien and disagreeable to me. Like others who have commented, I would have been inclined to shut down any suggestion of a 'religious' or belief based approach in favour of pure scientific pragmatism.

But I've since come to terms with the complexity of motivation and the primacy of culture in decision making. The urge to suggest that there's no time for this stuff because we simply need action, is to miss an important point — action is motivated by a combination of incentives, beliefs and value systems. Humans aren't calculators, we don't make decisions based on pure arithmetic and reason. Whilst we should strive to be as reasonable as possible, we can't expect perfection on that front. If we lean on pure reason across the whole population to drive action, we'll be waiting forever.

There are philosophical and cultural values that underpin our economic and social frameworks. Those are the driving forces of our actions. If we had a different philosophical relationship with nature, we'd FEEL differently about our actions in relation to it. When we feel differently, we rationalise differently and act differently.

Perhaps if more people felt a close connection with the natural world, giving up some material conveniences to protect it would feel less like sacrifice.

There are a lot of people aligning over this — systems thinkers like Daniel Schmachtenberger and Nora Bateson, the guys at the Flow Genome project, Charles Eisenstein, the Game B crowd, Douglas Rushkoff. My question is, how do we start making the shift, beyond just talking about it?

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