lila lit; november read


A Journey to the Heart of the Planet We Made

Gaia Vince

This one has been on our wish list for a little while. It’s an insightful read on climate change and the effects that we’ve had on our planet.

We all know our planet is in crisis, and that it is largely our fault. But all too often the full picture of change is obstructed by dense data sets and particular catastrophes. Struggling with this obscurity in her role as an editor at Nature, Gaia Vince decided to travel the world and see for herself what life is really like for people on the frontline of this new reality. What she found was a number people doing the most extraordinary things. During her journey she finds a man who is making artificial glaciers in Nepal along with an individual who is painting mountains white to attract snowfall; take the electrified reefs of the Maldives; or the man who's making islands out of rubbish in the Caribbean. These are ordinary people who are solving severe crises in crazy, ingenious, effective ways. While Vince does not mince words regarding the challenging position our species is in, these wonderful stories, combined with the new science that underpins Gaia's expertise and research, make for a persuasive, illuminating — and strangely hopeful — read on what the Anthropocene means for our future.

We haven’t read it yet, but our understanding is that Anthropocene is the ‘age of men’.

To serve our own desires for power, material gain and (over) consumption in all ways, we have destroyed our planet’s natural habitats, pushed millions of species into extinction and changed the very nature of nature. Possibly pushing ourselves and most of Earth’s inhabitants toward the end.

It’s heart wrenching to think about. And some of us can feel helpless in the face of such destruction and blindness.

We are nature. We just forgot this simple fact.

The simple act of wearing clothes, living in houses, using technology; all serve as huge distractions and separation from the fact that we are nature. The yoga philosophers of past taught us this. They knew that intention was everything; that actions have a boomerang effect and what goes around, comes around tenfold.

But the effects of our consumerism are only just beginning to transpire to the wider world now. And it may be too late. Climate change is of such importance right now.

And among all the doom and the gloom, it would be of some value to understand the causes and concerns. But also, to see and learn about the small unknown, unmentioned efforts of those trying to make a local and global difference.

This book has some beautiful poetic sentences and with chapters entitled Rivers, Mountains, Forests and so on, we felt moved to read this book. We hope that in learning about the wider picture, we may be inspired to live in more conscious ways.

We meet via Zoom on Wednesday 2nd December at 19:30 for 75 minutes. No fees involved other than purchasing the book. To join the conversation (even if you feel too shy to be seen) book under L I G H T on our ‘classes’ page. If you can’t make it, but still want to contribute to the group and/or receive notes from our chat, then let us know by email.

We just want conversation. Let’s share ideas about how to make a positive impact, no matter how small, no matter your financial budget…let’s just start to learn and change our rhythms one step at a time.

If we unite, we can make a difference. We’re keen to learn your ideas, hear your opinions and break some our habits. Hope you can make it.

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