Turning Towards Climate Change Together
Climate change is one of the most pressing issues of these times. The Turning Towards Climate Change Together courses I offer are grounded in the Active Hope work developed by Joanna Macy and Chris Johnstone and relational mindfulness developed by Gregory Kramer. The courses provide a space for the development of a community of like minded people, who together can develop the strength, courage and resilience to face into the challenges of this time. ‘The web of life is calling us forth at this time. We’ve come a long way and are here to play our part. With Active Hope we realise that there are adventures in store, strengths to discover, and comrades to link arms with.’ - Joanna Macy.
In 2021 the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) declared a code red for humanity. The IPCC warned that if humanity does not change its current course, we are heading for catastrophic changes on earth that will impact all life, including humanity. We can see that the planets climate is changing, news stories from around the world report increasing heatwaves, wild fires and floods. We are how living through a global pandemic predicted by scientists decades ago.
Given the circumstances, it is understandable that many people experience a mixture of overwhelm, shock, depression, anxiety, fear, anger, powerlessness, paralysis, confusion, hopelessness and despair. However, what if these responses rather than a problem, are a healthy feedback mechanism communicating that something is not right with the world. That these responses indicate that people are awake, alive, and rightfully concerned about what is happening. Long time scholar and environmental activist Joanna Macy says:
‘Of all the dangers we face from climate chaos…none is so great as the deadening of our response’ -Joanna Macy
The courses I offer provide methods and practices, that will allow you to channel your concerns about what is happening into active hope. A hope that is not dependent on specific outcomes, but in the knowledge that a response is required, whatever that might be from each of us. This is the time to act, there is work to do, to protect life on earth, now and for future generations.
‘Hope is not something that you have. Hope is something that you create, with your actions. Hope is something you have to manifest into the world, and once one person has hope, it can be contagious.’
– Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
The course includes:
- An introduction to Active Hope as developed by Joanna Macy and Chris Johnstone.
- Experiencing the spiral of The Work That Reconnects.
- Cultivating gratitude to support our resources and resilience.
- Learning mindfulness practices that can support us in staying present with the difficult emotions and feelings that can arise when doing this work.
- Engaging in meditations and relational explorations that open us to a wider sense of self.
- Exploring ways of deepening into community and finding our part to play.
- Developing a vision and courage in opening to new possibilities for the future.
- Looking at ways in which to build support around us so we can maintain our energy and enthusiasm, preventing burnout.
- Exploring and understanding ways in which to live in radical uncertainty and how to move forwards.
The course is highly interactive with ample time for teachings, experiential practice, dialogues in pairs, small groups and the larger group. There will also be optional home practice, readings and buddy connections.
Photo: The Marshall Islands reside in the central Pacific Ocean, with a population of 59,000 people. It is one of the countries most at risk of extinction due to sea level rise.