John Michael Greer on the path through

John Michael Greer, Archdruid and Peak Oil writer, is beginning a really fascinating series on serious steps to take to cushion the transition to a low-oil future. We’re not talking CFL lightbulbs and solar panels; think “extensive study and mastery of appropriate technologies” – more akin to an apprenticeship than a one-off consumer purchase.

While a lot of the stuff he has to say about how the S will H the F is fairly daunting, I’m actually feeling more positive than I ever have about the way through this mess. (And it is “through”; it seems pretty clear it’s too late for “out of.”) Ok, so you want me to study, and experiment, and build, and report my findings? And probably end up with something I can eat? Sweet! You just described my ideal weekend activities…

I would start by reading his June, 2010 posts and work your way forward to the present. He says he’s going to take the next year or so describing this path.

I have worried, as I watch this country become more and more explicitly and adamantly Christian-fundamentalist, that we’ll return to the age of literal witch hunts, putting every kid with a pack of Tarot cards at risk.This is bad because religious persecution is bad, of course, but there’s another level. Remember Einstein’s quote about “you can’t solve problems with the same thinking that created them”?

Greer is an example of a mature, thoughtful Pagan, whose worldview is so totally Other (and yet well-informed about history, science, economics, etc.) that his type of thinking is exactly what we need to help find other ways through the messes we find ourselves in.

Go, read.

And tell me what projects are calling to you. What will you study? How will you teach?



  1. Jay said,

    July 8, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    Thanks for sharing these. Regardless of whether the transition off oil starts in my lifetime or in the next generation’s lifetime, keeping skills alive is really important.

    One the things I’d like to learn how to do is raise bees. I’m doing a bit of research on it right now to determine if my yard is big enough host bees. If so, there is a how two class that starts every spring near my home.

    Bees not only make honey, but help gardens flourish and provide wax for candles. I’m also thinking of learning to spin wool into yarn this fall as well.

    • Emily said,

      July 8, 2010 at 1:56 pm

      My sweetie’s thinking about bees, too! Y’all could collaborate. 🙂 (He also points out, “There’s no mead without honey!”)

  2. Heather said,

    July 8, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    I’m interested in bees, too, and chickens. I also found myself checking out a book about wild plants that could be eaten, which is fascinating to me. Who KNEW you could eat burrs? (Burdock root, actually.)

  3. MK said,

    July 10, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    I don’t think this country is becoming “more and more explicitly and adamantly Christian-fundamentalist” at all. That’s just who gets into the news…..I think the data would indicate that America is less religious now than it ever was.

    • Emily said,

      July 11, 2010 at 9:25 am

      That may be true, but the religious folks who are left seem to be more extreme in their views, and many laws are being passed as “common sense” which are really a legislation of Christian values.

  4. MK said,

    July 11, 2010 at 3:24 pm

    I think that if Jesus Christ showed up today on the doorstep of some of those kinds of people, they’d slam the door in his face because he associated with hookers and criminals.

    • Emily said,

      July 11, 2010 at 5:16 pm

      *laugh* I think you may well be right. 🙂

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