When the gods set out to make the universe, they said to themselves, "Let us make of it a manifestation of our unending abundance and a sign to be read by those who shall have eyes to read. Let us lavish care without stint on every thing: no less upon the most fragile blade of grass than upon the mightiest of stars, no less upon the gnat that sings for an hour than upon the mountain that stands for a millennium, no less upon a flake of mica than upon a river of gold. Let us make no two leaves the same from one branch to the next, no two branches the same from one tree to the next, no two trees the same from one land to the next, no two lands the same from one world to the next, no two worlds the same from one star to the next. In this way, the Law of Life will be plain to all who shall have eyes to read: the rabbit that creeps out to feed, the fox that lies in wait, the eagle that circles above, and the man who bends his bow to the sky."
And this was how it was done from first to last, no two things alike in all the mighty universe, no single thing made with less care than any other thing throughout generations of species more numerous than the stars. And those who had eyes to see read the sign and followed the Law of Life.
The Tales of Adam
God is life in abundance wherever life is found, but not for all in every season. When the locusts thrive, the birds feast and the bison and the deer go hungry; still that place is as full of life as it was before and as full of life as it can be. No place where there is life is a desert, except to man.
The Tales of Adam
"Given an expanding food supply, any population will expand. This is true of any species, including the human. The Takers have been proving this here for ten thousand years. For ten thousand years they've been steadily increasing food production to feed an increased population, and every time they've done this, the population has increased still more."
The tribalism of the New Tribal Revolution isn't proposed as an end--as something right and to be clung to at any cost--it's proposed as a beginning, at a time when we must either make a new beginning or reconcile ourselves to joining the dinosaurs in the very near future.
We don't need to have all six billion of us living like environmental saints tomorrow--or ever, for that matter. To take such a thing as our objective would merely assure failure.
We've got to find our way back into the community. We've got to stop living like outlaws. When we begin to do that--when we begin to acknowledge that the world needs us and that we belong to it, not it to us--I think our feelings of desperate loneliness and neediness will begin to evaporate, all by themselves.
A lethal meme is one that kills its possessor.
In our cultural mythology we see ourselves as having left tribalism behind the way modern medicine left the leech and the bleeding bowl behind, and we did so decisively and irrevocably. This is why it's so difficult for us to acknowledge that tribalism is not only the preeminently human social organization, it's also the only unequivocally successful social organization in human history. Thus, when even so wise and thoughtful a statesman as Mikhail Gorbachev calls for "a new beginning" and "a new civilization," he doesn't doubt for a single moment that the pattern for it lies in the social organization that has introduced humanity to oppression, injustice, poverty, chronic famine, incessant violence, genocide, global warfare, crime, corruption, and wholesale environmental destruction. To consult, in our time of deepest crisis, with the unqualified success that humanity enjoyed here for more than three million years is quite simply and utterly unthinkable.
"We make our journey in the company of others; the deer, the rabbit, the bison, and the quail walk before us, and the lion, the eagle, the wolf, the vulture, and the hyena walk behind us. All our paths lie together in the hand of god and none is wider than any other or favored above any other. The worm that creeps beneath your foot is making its journey across the hand of god as surely as you are.
"Wherever life moves, the hand of god is under it, so no step can be off the path. When you stumble on the mountainside, that is part of your path. When your child is sick and you turn aside from the hunt, that is part of your path. When you wander hungry in the desert and cannot find your way, you're not lost, you're on your path. When cunning fails and your prey eludes you, don't curse your luck; this fruitless hunt is part of your path."
The Tales of Adam
I'm not a Luddite or a Unabomber. I don't regard civilization as a curse but as a blessing that people (including me) should be free to walk away from--for something better. And something better is what I'm after, and nothing less. Those who are looking for something worse definitely need to consult a different book.