"Those who witness extreme social collapse at first hand seldom describe any deep revelation about the truths of human existence. What they do mention, if asked, is their surprise at how easy it is to die.
The pattern of ordinary life, in which so much stays the same from one day to the next, disguises the fragility of its fabric. How many of our activities are made possible by the impression of stability that pattern gives? So long as it repeats, or varies steadily enough, we are able to plan for tomorrow as if all the things we rely on and don’t think about too carefully will still be there. When the pattern is broken, by civil war or natural disaster or the smaller-scale tragedies that tear at its fabric, many of those activities become impossible or meaningless, while simply meeting needs we once took for granted may occupy much of our lives."
-Excerpt from The Dark Mountain Manifesto by Paul Kingsnorth and Dougald Hine written in 2009
We speak with Paul Kingsnorth - a large influence on Tommy's thinking and worldview and - that influence is one of the reasons that lead him to start this Podcast. It's a rare opportunity to speak to someone who has been thinking about a situation like the Pandemic has placed us in for some time and has been examining the inevitable collapse of our current society and how to prepare for that. Paul is a writer and activist with a unique perspective on these events that are unfolding before us. Tommy first found Paul's writing in an essay entitled: Confessions of a Recovering Environmentalist where Paul examines 10 years of environmental activism and coming to the conclusion that there was no possibility of slowing down - much less stopping the coming climate catastrophe. This lead him to writing The Dark Mountain Manifesto, which is an artistic manifesto - urging writers and other creatives to create as if the coming climate crisis is true and happening and how embracing nature to do that can lead us to a less convenient - but more authentic future. While prophetic in his approach to how systems and globalization may melt down - he is also hopeful for a future where we embrace that we are a part of this planet - not superior to the rest of the natural world. A deep and insightful conversation with a great mind who has much to teach and leave for all of us to consider.