This is the final part of A Climate Counternarrative.
This spiritual war can be the last. One side wants to salvage oppression. The other to end it. It is warfare all the same. Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory, Sun Tzu explains, and tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat. My sense is that debunking or dismissing The Science is the latter, because it leaves the cultists in fear. Try my earlier suggestion if you are doing that. Empower the cultists instead, to give them hope. A Natural Language and this work put forward tactics to do so. I’d like to leave you with three more in closing.
The first is that you don’t need to behead an animal to make it harmless. You can also declaw it. Taking out the limbs makes the head powerless. The control apparatus depends on minions who execute decisions and communicate information to and from the top. The lower ranks will likely depend on following orders to feed their families. Seeing to it that your community is paying or feeding them might be enough to take them out. The middle and upper ranks can be a different story.
If the minions are unresponsive when you confront them about their role in enabling malfeasant activities (send a cease and desist letter), shame them into non-compliance. Spread the truth about what they’re enabling around them. No one sane is able to endure disapproving stares around them for long. So tell their family, friends, and colleagues; the places they hang out at; and so on. Stay polite, keep it legal, and leave their kids out of this. If they hide behind their kids, let the kids enjoy some parental attention. Go for their underlings if needed.
The next point is that they’re replacing their minions with algorithms and robots. It takes minions to do that, so prioritize those. Reach out to the engineers and technicians who build them, and to those who supply the parts, data, maintenance, or infrastructure. Artificial intelligence might be too advanced to stop this replacement entirely. But that will buy us time.
The last point is to heed nature’s most difficult lesson. African shepherds like the Maasai peoples teach it. They love and protect their sheep, but only so much. If a sheep chooses to escape their watch and gets eaten by a lion, then good for the lion. Nature needs its share too.
Contrast with modernity, which is the vanity of wanting to control without letting go of meaningless things. Doing so invites us to rationalize what serves no purpose out of existence. That leaves no room for context. It destroys, when context is nature. It also alienates us, when context is the other. Context is what breathes meaning, emotions, love, and life into us. It is thus fair to say that modernity drains life out of everything it touches, and out of those who serve it.
in the end, a simple maxim captures the shepherds’ teaching. Live, love and protect the living, and let go of the dying. Or die, serving the dying.
There is more to this teaching, but the rest will wait. For now, just know to let go when your heart tells you to.