Our World UN

#024

HEDONISM, SURVIVALISM AND THE BURDEN OF KNOWLEDGE
James Magnus-Johnston, Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy (05.01.15)

Evolutionary psychologists Ajit Varki and Danny Brower believe that some of the earliest humans fell into depression due to their awareness of mortality, while others were able to carry on without becoming crippled by this realization.

The UNU website offers quite interesting articles. Today, I just found something about people getting depressed after realizing that our world is falling apart and that they cannot really do anything against it, since so many people do not care. I can actually weirdly relate to this. When I was in Sustainable Development, I thought a lot about growth being an ideology. When my advisor explained this to me, I had a revelation. It was an explosion in my head, fireworks and all. But then, when I talked about this with other friends, some of them looked at me and grinned: “So, they succeeded in brainwashing you…”Some people would take a few minutes or hours, discuss the concept and then decide if it is actually interesting or if they still think it’s not relevant; others would just dismiss the whole idea.

For people who make a living by researching about environmental issues and who are surrounded by data saying that we are simply destroying our planet, it must be quite difficult to live positively. How would it be possible to not feel depressed when you think that the only way to avoid a major catastrophe would be to make people aware of what is at stake but people wouldn’t listen to you because it’s a discourse that goes against their fundamental belief: growth is necessary to human societies?

***

Listening to: Park Shin Hye – 꿈을 꾸다

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