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Rhyd Wildermuth:

The longer the litanies of crises grow, the more favorable the winds become to return us to home. Not the idealized homes of the urban condo dwellers thumbscrolling digital catalogues of trade spoils from distant lands, nor the cramped apartments of workers crowded with cheap plastic and screens displaying simulacra of lives lived elsewhere. The home towards which these winds blow is not the “normal” we delude ourselves into believing will return after each crisis passes, nor the utopian fantasies that we can have everything we want without any of the effects our rapacious desire causes.

The home towards which these winds come is a home we may not yet recognise, since it has been so long since we’ve been there. Much has changed since we left it: fewer forests, fewer insects, fewer animals, fewer wilds. A thick dust of forgetting has fallen over every room, obscuring what we once cherished as dear and celebrated as beautiful. Too long at sea seeking wealth and wonder, we may not even remember how to live the kinds of lives one lives at home.

Fortunately, it is mostly only a matter of remembering, and it’s most often all joy. What is it like to grow a bit of one’s food at home, rather than shop for it in garishly-lit warehouses? What does one do without a screen to tell you what to think? How does one meet other humans without algorithmic filters telling you who “likes” you? How do we provide for ourselves without capitalist networks of distribution, employment, and management?

It is mostly only a matter of remembering, but it will also be a matter of learning anew, and this will not always be joy. We will need to learn anew how to survive without being told how to survive, without anyone managing our desires, telling us what we need, and re-assuring us that it’s all under control. We’ll need to wean ourselves off the opiates of lies, false visions of a future where the earth does what we want it to, rather than what it does. We’ll need to learn what addicts in recovery learn, that our sense of control was always only an illusion of control.

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