The question is not ‘are we going to fail?’ The question is ‘how?’ The question is what shall be the manner of our inability to care for what was entrusted to us?
– Stephen Jenkinson
THIS PAST SUMMER, Stephen Jenkinson was invited to speak at an event called Wisdom Working for Climate Change. The evening drew a mixed crowd of young and old(er), some who had attended a teaching with Stephen, and many who were likely seeing him for the first time.
I’ll admit: the subject matter isn’t what you’d necessarily call a “big draw” – given the now obvious cascade of environmental and social disruption that has come to characterize our collective discourse. The only “possible” antidote that one might seek is a great beacon of hope. Stephen thankfully, offered neither.
Instead, he tackles the unspoken elephant head on: is it too late to change our course? with a far more compelling proposition:
“Grief requires of us that we know what time we’re in. And the great enemy of grief is hope. The basic proposition of hope is: you hope for something that ain’t. You don’t hope for something that is. It’s always future oriented, which means, hope is inherently intolerable of the present. The present is never good enough. Our time requires of us to be hope free. To burn through the false choice between hopeful and hopeless… it’s the same con job. We don’t require hope to proceed. We require grief to proceed.”
Listen to the full excerpt:
Read further on The Vancouver Observer.