What are some indicators of spiritual apathy
The intersection of politics and spirituality in relation to the climate crisis
The following interview with Mohammed Mesbahi, founder of STWR, explores both the current political and deeper spiritual meanings of the need to share the world's resources in relation to escalating climate change. Originally conducted in English, Part 1 begins with a policy-related discussion of the importance of the “principle of sharing” as a principle of the UN climate negotiations. In this first part of the dialogue, Mesbahi proposes a way for activists and committed citizens to force governments through incessant protest actions to make a zero-carbon economy a top priority.
Part 2 then expands the discussion to the underlying psychological and spiritual causes of the global ecological crisis, which leads to an "inner" line of investigation into the deeper reasons why our modern society has not yet transitioned to an ecologically sustainable way of life. In Part 3, Mesbahi argues that a true manifestation of "love-in-action" can only be realized when our concern about ending unnecessary human suffering becomes in our consciousness the same urgency as protecting the natural environment. All in all, this comprehensive interview serves as an introduction to Mesbahi's vision of a huge citizens' initiative for a just, fair and balanced world order.
Part I: A just transition through "fair shares"
Part II: The inner and outer CO2
Part III: Demonstrating Love-in-Action
Part I: A just transition through "fair shares"
How do you assess the Paris Agreement - was it justified to call it "a great leap for mankind" and "the greatest diplomatic success in the world"?
There was a justification for the boasting headlines because an international climate treaty was finally sealed. Six years ago there was no universal agreement in Copenhagen. They saw a positive change of tone, not to keep up with the aim of global temperatures to more than 1.5 ° C above pre-industrial levels - further evidence of the two decades Langen efforts of the public and the precise science. In view of the delayed and often controversial negotiations over the past 21 years, in my opinion few can disagree that it is a surprisingly ambitious goal that amazed even the scientific community.
Another reason for describing the talks as successful is that a target for the respective intended national fixed contributions (INDCs) has now been created for each country, namely the first emission reduction plans within the framework of the UN Climate Convention (UNFCCC), which also for the developed countries also apply to the developing countries and form the official basis of a global framework for the period after 2020. If we start from the most optimistic assessment, namely that we now have a long-term goal to achieve our zero greenhouse gas emissions by the second half of the century, it will at least give us time for a new plan of action, despite concerns from many civil society groups have regarding the use of negative emission technologies. The fact that developing countries have made the most ambitious commitments, including China and India, also means that there are signs that the geopolitics of global leadership has shifted and that the South stands ready to step up its efforts in this regard, despite the The North's unwillingness to “take the lead” on a reasonable scale.
Whether the treaty will bring us closer to a just and sustainable world order is another question. Despite the targeted emissions target of 1.5 ° C, there is no clear direction as to how these collective reductions can be achieved in the short term. Even if the current INDCs are adhered to by 2030, various studies show that we are heading for a warming of the planet of 3 to 4 degrees and will bring us to a very dangerous tipping point. The introductory text to the treaty itself admits this, stating that far greater emissions reduction efforts are required to close the significant gap between the nations' commitments to reduce emissions and total emissions, which even correspond to the 2 degree course. It does not prevent nations from fulfilling their already inadequate commitments Not to comply, which in the history of the multilateral UN talks gives little cause for optimism.
The only binding element of the agreement, namely that each nation would submit regularly updated progress targets, was foreseeable. It may certainly be a legally binding document of international law under the UNFCCC, but there is no further legal responsibility for rich countries to provide the funding to help poor countries adapt to climate change, let alone legally binding targets for meaningful carbon emissions. Savings. In reality, it is a sad indictment of our time that the Paris Agreement has been heralded as "ambitious" and "politically historic". In this regard, we can also observe a remarkable parallel with the sustainable development goals agreed in September 2015, which among other ambitious environmental goals also promises an "end to poverty everywhere" by 2030, but without sanctioning mechanisms or credible measures to achieve these goals.
From the perspective of Share The Worlds Resources, it is interesting to observe that the concept of “fair shares” has now become a call for action in the climate debates. What relevance do you think the principle of sharing has for the Paris Agreement and the COP negotiations in general?
The idea of sharing appears today in many areas of political thought and activism as a central issue, especially in civil society lobbying on climate change. Perhaps that is natural and also to be expected, since the principles of fairness and justice are of course recognized in the UN Climate Convention. Annex I countries are expected to take the lead in reducing emissions while respecting Annex II countries' rights to sustainable development. This includes the right of the less developed countries, on financial and technical support. How to share responsibility on a fair and equitable basis so that global carbon emissions stay within scientifically accepted limits has always been at the heart of the COP negotiations. The basic principle of common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR-RC) anchors this recognition on the basic premise that all states are responsible for coping with global warming, but not equally responsible, highlighting the profound moral issues that have caused so much contention and divisions since the trial began in 1992.
However, this principle was all but abandoned in the Paris Agreement, which is a significant step backwards. Large industrialized countries successfully campaigned against the principle of equality by choosing to set their own goals on a purely national basis through the INDCs, without reference to the extent of the global effort required to achieve the 1.5 ° C target to be observed. This effectively erases their historical responsibility and speaks against effective action by all countries in the years to come. One of the main goals of the US in particular was to weaken the words in the text on “loss and damage” so that they are not liable for compulsory compensation for climate impacts in poor countries.
In terms of climate finance for developing countries to help them adapt and mitigate, it was already clear that a target contribution of US $ 100 billion$ is totally inadequate and only a fraction of that amount has been made available so far. “Voluntary” and “shared among all countries” are the new terms in the text of climate finance, shifting the burden of responsibility further back to the poorer countries. Guaranteed public funding will be relatively meager and there is an additional risk that funding will be diverted from existing aid. Most of the future funding may have to come from new market mechanisms such as carbon offsetting, but with the risk of increased reliance on private investment. We can hardly hope that governments will mobilize additional sources of income that flow directly into the United Nations climate fund, for example from financial transaction taxes or through a progressive carbon tax system.
Many of these points have been explained in much greater detail by civil society observers, but it should be clear to us that the outcome of COP21 in no way reflects the principles of sharing and justice in its true form. Only the activists and civil rights activists in the conference halls seemed to have an idea of what justice means in relation to the climate crisis, through immediate short-term action and transformative, systemic change. Interestingly, civil society thinking about "fair shares" has evolved significantly in recent years. It is based on a global carbon budget that takes into account historical responsibility and emissions allocation for individual countries. However, the governments in the north have now still further removed from the need for a new paradigm for the equitable sharing of a shrinking atmosphere, and so the prospect of an ambitious carbon budget anchored in a legally binding climate agreement is still a long way off.
Can you explain the relevance of a carbon budget to formulating a just solution and preventing dangerous global warming?
Despite the current failure of multilateralism and the inadequacies of the UNFCCC negotiations, I still believe it is imperative that a vision for a fair climate deal is upheld by campaign groups and progressive analysts based on the latest scientific evidence. The issue of a global carbon budget plays a central role in this vision as it shows how much carbon can be released into the atmosphere without exceeding the internationally agreed global warming caps. If the remaining budget is shared on the basis of fairness and equity, it raises a number of pressing questions about how the remaining atmospheric space can be shared among the nations of the world, especially given the different levels of development between the global north and south.
The carbon budget approach has been discussed by NGOs and academics for many years and has been well established in science since the IPCC's fifth assessment report, which published a budget assessment for various temperature limits based on data up to 2011. The United Nations estimated that around 1 trillion tons of carbon could be released into the atmosphere if the 2 ° C limit is to be met, which decreases to about 800 billion tons when additional warming factors or other greenhouse gases are taken into account. Of this, the IPCC has calculated that we have already consumed more than 500 billion tons of carbon through human activities since the beginning of the industrial revolution, which means that at least half of the budget has already been spent. On the current emissions path, the remaining carbon space should be exhausted within 2 to 3 decades.
Various studies have updated these estimates and calculated that we have much less season to adhere to the budget of 1.5 ° C. It is widely recognized in both mainstream academia and the NGO community that 2 ° C is not a safe enough threshold to prevent “dangerous” climate change. However, most scenarios so far have focused on 2 ° C or 3 ° C limits and science is less robust about the safer 1.5 ° C limit. There could be less than five years of carbon emissions remaining by the 1.5 ° C budget, and even that only gives us a 66% chance that we will run the risk of tipping points and major impacts Food security and Human security, avoid. Let us note here that the 66% probability, which is considered the 'likely' opportunity in IPCC terminology, is highly questionable, and if we apply a level of risk that is considered acceptable in other areas of human activity, we say 90% or higher, then there is actually no more carbon budget left to stay below 1.5 ° C.
It should also be emphasized that the IPCC estimates are extremely complex due to the different assumptions and methods used and that there is a great deal of uncertainty about the feedback processes that increase or decrease the warming occurring in the atmosphere; hence the need for various alternatives to stay below a certain temperature, none of which can be guaranteed. New studies are often published which find that the IPCC estimates are too generous and that we may overestimate the total carbon budget by up to 200%.
The political, economic and social implications are enormous when we consider how to set a scientifically defined and internationally agreed ceiling on total global emissions and then divide the remaining carbon budget between nations or populations. The official UN data already shows that limiting emissions to 2 ° C is an extraordinary challenge. A fair distribution of mitigation and financial efforts in this direction requires great sacrifices on the part of Annex I countries, a renewed focus on the critical social and economic needs of the developing countries and a level of international cooperation that has never been seen in human history was experienced. But, as already mentioned, we still seem a long way from realizing the true extent of this great civilizational challenge. Political leaders in Paris have failed even to discuss a total carbon budget as a basis for goals and burden sharing, while fossil fuel companies are still being helped to invest massive sums in developing new reserves that make it impossible keeping temperatures within a safe budget.
Please say more about what truly fair and ambitious international cooperation should look like from country to country. What do you see as concrete achievements of contemporary civil society when it comes to implementing the principles of sharing, justice and fairness in a multilateral climate regime?
This question, which emerged from the debates on “climate debt” in activist circles and came to the fore at the time of the Copenhagen Summit in 2009, has received a great deal of attention in civil society. The question is how to develop an ambitious climate regime that is "in the light of justice and the best available science" that has long been accepted as a principle in the UN Climate Convention and affirmed by world leaders in the Paris Agreement, but not yet translated into a quantitative global framework. A number of NGOs have therefore dealt with the operationalization of the core principles of the Convention, for which the concepts of historical emissions and historical responsibility are fundamental.
The various proposals that have been discussed have one thing in common, namely the concern for economic justice in moving closer to climate action, and this implies the need for a justice-based burden-sharing framework that ensures the right to sustainable development for countries in the global south . The policy of the COP negotiations has demonstrated that this is not just a moral priority, but the basis for geopolitical realism and the gateway to further environmental ambitions - a point that has been well argued by many observers in civil society.
For example, within the framework of the highly regarded Greenhouse Development Rights (GDRs), the right to sustainable development is codified by a “development threshold”, that is, a per capita income that should not be taken into account when calculating a country's ability to combat climate change. In other words, a country's capacity can be defined as the sum of all individual incomes, with the exception of incomes below the development threshold. This should be higher than the official global poverty line so that it applies somewhat to all citizens of the North and the South and reflects an adequate standard of living. The compelling argument is that people below this income level who have not yet exercised their right to development should not shoulder the burden of climate change.
In order to further take into account the unequal historical emissions between north and south, the GDR framework also proposes the use of equity indicators, which should serve to calculate the responsibility of each country and its overall capacity. For example, historical responsibility is calculated using each country's cumulative per capita greenhouse gas emissions since an agreed start date such as 1850 or 1990 and that is adjusted to take into account the development threshold. In this way, a country's fair share of global mitigation efforts can be defined by combining responsibility and capacity to generate a single indicator of commitment. The actual dynamic potential of such an index naturally depends on first determining the remaining carbon budget, for which a 1.5 ° C marker path should clearly be the basis for negotiations.
My brief explanation of the GDR methodology here is rather sketchy and incomplete, and I would recommend the reader to delve deeper into this literature in order to better understand how one can provide a quantifiable, fair system to the to share global efforts fairly between all countries. However, I think their key to success is to demonstrate the importance of north-south cooperation for a workable framework to mitigate climate change. The Annex I countries have a comparatively larger share of global responsibility and capacity, so that they may not be able to fulfill their fair share of efforts through domestic measures alone. They therefore have a due responsibility to provide less developed countries with the funding, access to technology and capacity building they need to realize their full potential for alleviation, in line with their sustainable development strategies.
In the most recent iteration of such a justice-based framework before COP21, a civil society review of the INDCs showed the extent to which the promised measures of the richer countries compare to their respective reasonable efforts, which are central to far greater implementation possibilities. For example, the US and EU INDCs only represent about a fifth of their fair share. However, it should be emphasized that these estimates are also conservative and pragmatic as they are based on a global slowdown path of 2 ° C and in relation to the totally inadequate INDCs. This leads civil societies to recommend an enlargement mechanism that moves things forward and enables deeper and possibly legally binding commitments for the future.
On the other hand, we cannot expect developing countries to accept a binding mitigation framework if the principles of sharing and equity are not central. One has to see that poverty alleviation and human development can go hand in hand, with a Marshall-like transition to a low-carbon energy supply as envisaged in scientific reality. There is no getting around it: the northern countries first have to bear a larger part of the burden and face their obligations for a massive international transfer of technological and financial support to poorer countries in the south. Indeed, it is a new vision of international cooperation, similar to the Brandt report of 1980.  It is high time that the report is updated to reflect the reality of a world that transcends quickly ecological limits and in a global redistribution of resources is required to the climate and to tackle both poverty crisis simultaneously.
The Brandt Report proposed a kind of Marshall Plan for the developing world based on global measures through incentives based on the Keynesian model. But is it possible to split the remaining carbon budget based on equity, around so that the target of 1.5 ° C or even 2 ° C can be achieved without the global economy shrinking significantly over the long term?
This is a question that receives little attention in political and academic circles, where the primacy of economic growth is seldom contested. However, I agree with the basic assessment of many green economists and environmental think tanks, such as the one Club of Rome and the former UK Sustainable Development Commission that the continued acceleration of global economic activity is at odds with our efforts to prevent dangerous climate change and preserve the planet's ecosystems. There is also the UK's Tyndall Center Research Institute, which has addressed this issue through an analysis of the carbon budget and convincingly highlights the need for immediate and planned strategies to reduce consumption and economic contraction in Annex I countries.
Its analysis is worth thinking about further, as it shows how meeting the 2 ° C commitments forces Annex I countries to decarbonise their economies drastically and with immediate effect, without further delay, such as up to 2020 when the INDC pledges of the Paris Agreement begin. Only on this basis can developing countries be able to keep their emissions at peak levels through 2025 while at the same time growing their economies minimally while initiating a rapid transition away from fossil fuel development. According to the Tyndall Center's cumulative emissions budget approach, based on the principle of equality, wealthy nations will have to cut emissions by 8-10% per year over the coming decades. That is well below what most economists consider compatible for a growing economy. In fact, there is no historical report of a country that has managed to cut emissions by 4% per year over an extended period of time without experiencing a sharp economic decline. The notable Stern report by the UK Climate Change Committee found that annual reductions of more than 1% have historically been associated with an economic recession or upheaval.
Hence the conclusion of the prestigious Tyndall Center analysts that the US, EU and other rich countries need a planned phase of austerity and rapid decarbonization to offset continued economic growth and rising emissions in poorer countries. We don't have time for a gradual, evolutionary transition to a low-carbon energy supply that could take another two or three decades to fully implement. We must therefore consciously strive for a fair reduction in energy and resource consumption and more direct redistribution strategies instead of pursuing the conventional pursuit of economic growth.
This undoubtedly challenges the failed assumptions of laissez faire globalization, and indicates the need for a paradigm shift in economic orthodoxy and a new theory of macroeconomics beyond the obsession with measuring GDP. All of this is discussed at length on the radical fringes in public debates. I would also like to add that the Tyndall Center's analysis is also very conservative as it is a 2 ° C and not a 1.5 ° C path and only takes into account an extremely low probability of 50%, as I mentioned earlier , Likewise, if we factor in the increase in emissions over the past few years - since they developed their careers - rates of decarbonization for wealthy nations may need to be well above 10% per year, possibly in the range of 15% to 20%. The effects are sobering and that is to say the least.
Which of these effects will we see if sustained global economic growth is not feasible due to environmental restrictions alone, regardless of resource limitations and other ecological limits? If you believe in creating a world where everyone has their fair share of the earth's resources, doesn't that mean a relative adjustment of living standards between and within all countries?
From an economics perspective, one of the main implications of the research and analysis we are discussing is that most policymakers assume that carbon intensity can be reduced enough to allow for continuous increases in production, something called a "green" or "sustainable" one “Growth is very refutable. The belief that we can decouple greenhouse gas emissions from economic growth in the longer term is in no way disproved by the evidence, where permanent and absolute decoupling has proven rare, if not fictitious. Countless studies cite the phenomenon of the rebound effect, where efficiency gains tend to be invested in more growth and consumption, negating the alleged benefits in reducing emissions.
If one also takes into account the fact that wealthy nations are effectively exporting their emissions and production to other countries, the picture is completely different. If you fully account for all consumption-related emissions, including emissions from international aviation and shipping, the extent of decoupling is almost insignificant for most countries, especially when a sharply shrinking global carbon budget is taken into account. Overall, this points to a highly controversial conclusion, but I think it is natural to assume that we cannot expand the world economy year after year or universalize the current level of prosperity expected in more affluent industrialized nations, and yet the carbon content of Parisians Commitments. Regardless of which productivity gains are achieved through energy efficiency technologies and renewable energies, the absolute reduction in emissions of the required magnitude also depends on a drastic reduction in global energy consumption. Consequently, it depends on governments setting new macroeconomic policy objectives that are no longer based on continued GDP growth.
Much theoretical and modeling work has now been carried out on the concept of a stable state economy, but as you indicated in your question, the real problem is how a transition to equitable global sustainability can be achieved and managed. It is not just a question of how the global emissions budget can be fairly shared or how the rights to pollute the atmosphere can be shared out. There are also much larger and more problematic considerations of how the natural world should be used and shared. How can we create a world where everyone gets their fair share of resources while we are already facing several major planetary boundaries and the world population is steadily increasing? The analysis of the ecological footprint has produced some interesting findings in this area, namely that our combined resource requirements have already exceeded the biocapacity of the planet by 50 percent. We also know that it is the richest 20 percent of consumers who take the vast majority of global resources, and contribute most by far for environmental degradation.
The "fair share of the earth" ideal may be questionable in this regard, but this very uncomfortable truth suggests that high income countries may need to reduce their per capita environmental footprint by as much as 80 percent if anything is to be achieved that of adaptation comes close to the material standard of living without exceeding the environmental limits. At the moment, this visionary concept of a converging world is primarily reserved for high-minded social scientists as the world continues to oppose it on most indicators of wealth and inequality.
It seems that we as an international community do not want to grapple with the immense implications of a proportional distribution of global resources within biophysical reality. Especially with regard to our national systems of government, which were never designed to deal with cross-border problems on the basis of real cooperation and exchange. I would say it is clear that both the climate and the broader ecological crises are forcing nations to rethink the whole model of ever-expanding global trade based on endless economic growth and our energy-intensive and consumer-centric way of life that has enormous implications Has. However, the real question is how a voluntary transition to a just, participatory and environmentally resilient society can actually be initiated, regardless of all the considerations regarding necessary strategies and means that are required for this enormous social change.
We will go into this question in more detail later. First of all, I would like to bring our discussion back to the Paris climate negotiations. What do you see as the main obstacles to the realization of a fair and ambitious multilateral regime that you described earlier?
The main obstacle, evident to any activist in the climate justice movement, is that the COP negotiations are dominated by strong interest groups while rich governments are politically trapped by the fossil fuel lobby and business class. Last December, the Paris Summit boasted an unprecedented number of corporate sponsors. This was again reflected in the conference rooms as market-oriented and technology-driven solutions, such as carbon capture and storage from biomass. As it stands, carbon markets are back on the agenda, suggesting that governments are still assuming they can get out of the climate crisis rather than commit to drastically reducing emissions in the short term. The real solutions were never part of the deal, such as the immediate end of fossil fuel subsidies, the move to diversified agro-ecological food systems, the shift in our economies, and the planning for a global shift to 100 percent renewable energy.
I think the core of the contradiction in the Paris Agreement is obvious to most observers. Many fine words were used in the convention on the subject of “extensive reduction in global emissions” or “sustainable consumption and production patterns”, but the systemic political and economic origins of the environmental crisis were largely neglected. While governments negotiated a climate deal and pledged to accelerate their country's emissions reductions, they continued to negotiate secret and polluting trade deals, such as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). According to the leaked documents, the European Union blocked all discussions in the Paris talks on measures that could restrict international trade and, as we know, many of the plurallateral agreements negotiated behind closed doors aim to increase imports significantly and fossil fuel exports.
A clear contradiction can also be seen in the fact that the UN climate process only focuses on the demand for fossil fuel consumption, but does not take its production into account. Unsurprisingly, the Paris Agreement said nothing about the huge spending on fossil fuel subsidies, now in the $ 5 trillion range.Nor was it surprising that the idea of keeping fossil fuels in the ground wasn't even mentioned in the final agreement, despite the huge campaigns and public pressure surrounding the issue. The environmental pollution caused by international transports has also been completely omitted from the agreement. Actually unthinkable when you consider the global emissions contribution of the shipping and aviation industries in the coming decades.
For the benevolent common man trying to understand these Byzantine climate negotiations, the unequivocal conclusion should be that we cannot trust our heads of state, whose agenda, as I describe them, is overshadowed by the forces of commercialization. Just as we do not know what is going on behind the closed doors of dark and devious trade deals like the TTIP, nobody knows what is really being discussed in the corporate circus of the COP process. I often refer to these leaders as our political accountants because as soon as they go home they will immediately sign more contracts for large polluting companies whose interests they invariably represent.
If we take our own government in Great Britain as an example, they signed the Paris Agreement with great interest, but the next day the announcement came that subsidies for renewable energies would be cut significantly. A U-turn that opened up more new areas in the UK for fracking, including national parks and game reserves. President Obama also passed a 40-year ban on crude oil exports days after the Paris Agreement on climate change, which is a tremendous gift to the oil industry and which will further exacerbate carbon emissions. So who can deny that these political accountants in our governments are completely guided by the ideology of unbridled market forces? Hence, they cannot be trusted to act on our behalf on such an important issue as saving the planet.
Given these entrenched market forces and powerful vested interests, what can ordinary people do to steer government policy on the right track?
This is the time when activists and committed citizens must continuously organize massive demonstrations and direct action to force governments to switch to a carbon-free economy as a priority. We need to engage the entire public and grasp the need for rapid social change, like a huge boycott of consumption that embodies the idea of business as usual. The inspiring protests that we saw during the climate negotiations in Paris are exactly what needs to take place - but on a much larger scale and in all cities.
Now is the time we should keep protesting around the world. Not just once or twice a year, or only during conferences of the contracting states. Total cumulative emissions have increased at an unprecedented rate in the new millennium and, as just discussed, it is naive or foolish to believe that world leaders will take effective remedial action without pressure from the global public. We should also not forget what happened after the international stock market crash in 2008, when governments brushed environmental problems off the table in order to rescue collapsing banks and to stimulate the economy again. What do you think will happen if another serious global financial crisis occurs, as many senior analysts are predicting?
If we take a holistic view of the scale of the environmental problems we are facing, it is clear that huge and constant demonstrations around the world are the only solution to realigning government priorities. It is not that we as a public are dependent on our governments - in fact, the opposite is true. Governments depend on the current lack of public engagement so that they can continue to prioritize important corporate and financial interests. From a different perspective, the world's leaders have done their part by coming together and agreeing the core target of a temperature limit of 1.5 ° C. Now it is up to the public to demonstrate every day and night until appropriate action is taken to bring about the necessary social, political, economic and technological changes.
It is also noteworthy that any major environmental demonstration not only creates noise that is heard by governments, but also helps educate the public and raise awareness of the environmental crisis. That has a powerful effect. The media plays an important role in educating the public in this regard, and if they keep talking about the need for social change to avert climate change, it can lead to enormous demonstrations around the world, given the inaction of our governments. Of course, the mainstream media rarely acts in this way, with a few exceptions. There was an example prior to the Copenhagen Conference in 2009 where the media spoke with one voice and many of them on the front page calling for governments to distribute the burden of combating climate change more fairly. 
In general, however, the mass media has not played its vital role in educating people about the real scale and urgency of tackling the climate crisis. On the contrary, most of the media are too busy spreading false propaganda for their social and political benefactors unless they ignore the subject entirely. In the UK, for example, none of the tabloids - read by the majority of the public - ran a cover story the day after the "historic" climate agreement was reached in Paris. However, this is an issue that can determine the future survival of humanity and requires fundamental changes in the system and lifestyle, and ultimately the cooperation and participation of all.
In the past few months and years, thousands upon thousands of people have taken part in a global wave of actions to keep fossil fuels in the ground and calling for a just transition to a clean energy era. Do you see this resurgence of rallies, protests and civil disobedience as a sign that the public is awakening to the reality of the climate crisis, or is it still a long way to go before we see the kind of broad social movements you envision?
On the one hand, we have a climate agreement that is not ambitious enough. On the other hand, we have a global public that is not ambitious enough. For example, around 400,000 people gathered on the streets of New York City in September 2014 demanding bold action from governments to deal with the climate crisis. It was the largest climate march in US history. But there are more than 300 million people in America. So you could say that while 400,000 people protested, there were also hundreds of millions of people busy consuming. The same applies to dozens of other countries that have recently seen large climate marches that remain relatively small in relation to the total population. Indeed, the greatest threat to the environment doesn't just come from polluting companies or their governments; it is also the complacency or sheer indifference of the public in general.
Sure, there are plenty of dedicated activists out there with maturity and intelligence advocating the need to keep fossil fuels in the ground, switch to decentralized and renewable energy sources, develop a more local and environmentally resilient economy, and protect the commons of corporate assets and all further. But there are comparatively few people who try to carry out an activity that requires the support of the entire population. They're trying on their own to do the job for everyone else, which doesn't make sense given the warnings from scientists telling us we are headed for a climate catastrophe.
These very few activists are doing what they can to save the world - the rest can best be described as consumer citizens who leave the world's problems to other people and their governments. So we can see that government is led by the forces of commercialization, while the consumer is led by his own complacency and indifference. In this tiring and oppressive reality, it is understandable that many active people of good will feel exhausted and overwhelmed when trying to fight for the good of all humanity.
Environmental activists, however, should be aware of one more fact: it was in large part their activity and the global demonstrations that led world leaders to reach a general agreement in Paris, especially in the face of public outrage, rather than the climate deal failed in Copenhagen. Pope Francis' harsh criticism of inequality and overconsumption is also a major factor that has prompted world leaders to hear the voice of the people. The Pope's call regarding the environmental crisis should be taken seriously by believers and agnostics alike. In his recent encyclical letter, he made a powerful argument regarding the need to share the world's resources if we are to resolve the environmental crisis.
What the Pope essentially recognizes is that we cannot address our ecological problems unless we also address the huge discrepancies in living standards around the world, which requires a sense of global solidarity and interdependence that unfortunately is lacking in human affairs. His encyclical makes it clear that the responsibility for transforming society does not lie solely with established politicians, who tend to be driven by strong financial interests and usually lack a broad vision. The real responsibility rests with all of us to overcome our social conditioning that maintains a lavish and consumerist lifestyle rather than developing new attitudes toward life that reject the materialist mindset and the prevailing “techno-economic paradigm”.  I suggest that it can begin with us joining forces with the millions of people who advocate a simpler, more reasonable, and more just world.
During the talks in Paris, many activists noticed the immense gap between the urgent demands of civil society and the reality of those "political accountants", as you call them, who consistently put the interests of the rich and powerful before the interests of the most vulnerable, or indeed the whole Face humanity. How do you think this gap can narrow if we successfully move towards a sustainable economy - say that civil society groups need to unite with one voice to generate the political will necessary for a full transition to renewable energy ?
Our vision of a fair climate deal so far will never succeed as long as these political accountants are in power in governments, and even if they do end up adopting such sound proposals, it will take a very long time. And time is exactly what we don't have when we have to maintain a greenhouse gas concentration of 350 ppm in the atmosphere and have already exceeded an alarming 400 ppm. Climate researchers understand that the next decade is critical to curbing global warming, but it seems we have reached a dead end when you consider the seemingly irreconcilable gap between political "realism" and the need for rapid holistic transformation .
Many people believe the way forward is for social movements, environmental and development NGOs, and all progressive civil society organizations to come together on a common front to urge governments to take the necessary action. We have seen many initiatives and manifestos to this end, all of which come and go and, in general, move very little. Unfortunately, these initiatives will only work if a large majority of the public supports these groups through massive protests and peaceful direct actions that literally hundreds of millions of people take part in. Unfortunately, we are far from that at the moment.
It could even be detrimental to the work of many NGOs if they put all their energies into fighting for government action to combat climate change, as there is so much injustice and suffering around the world that the various organizations and their concerns increase urgently needed at this point in time. I see that their work is on the same energy line as that of the governments and multinationals, where the wrong trends towards further commercialization, social division and environmental degradation are exacerbated while the NGOs pull in the other direction and try to do the damage that results alleviate. It is indeed a struggle, but a struggle that goes in many different directions, so that all NGOs cannot harmonize their collective efforts when they are more than busy fighting in their own way and for their own cause.
Hence, it is wrong to think that NGOs and civil society groups, in the current context of widespread public apathy and indolence, must work together to lead the way. It is even a smug way of the ordinary citizen to look at the problem from this perspective, for it is the public as a whole that needs to recognize the gravity of the situation of global injustice and environmental degradation. Then the public will empower the NGOs until their collective voices become so loud that governments are forced to act on their advice. In this sense, public support will symbolically represent the fact that NGOs are united in their diverse goals.
Part II: The inner and outer CO2
How do you explain the attitude of those influential leaders and executives who continue to benefit from the climate crisis and fuel fossil fuel industries despite a generally growing consensus that fossil fuels should stay in the ground?
If we holistically evaluate what we are really experiencing, we can observe a war that is going on between the new and the old age, which is expressed on the one hand by diverging left and right politics and on the other hand by increasingly polarizing perspectives with loyally progressive and reactionary Attitudes. We are also witnessing increasing social divisions and global conflicts caused by extreme and worsening inequalities at the national and global levels. In the midst of these escalating crises and confusions, it is difficult for the average person to grasp the consciousness of billionaires like the Koch brothers who will not hesitate to lobby their fossil fuel empires and deny climate change.
Those who benefit from the destruction of the earth will never understand the environmental awareness of those who fight it, like the activists who opposed the Keystone XL pipeline or those who fight against fossil fuel investments. We are at a time when no one can understand the mindset of those benefiting from today's climate crisis, including politicians who commit to an ambitious climate deal as they continue to negotiate new contracts with polluting companies behind closed doors. Rather than trying to understand the intentions of these selfish people who represent the age of a bygone era, we should try to understand the mindset of environmental activists who are fighting for our common future and helping them as quickly as possible.
Given how clear are the economic, environmental and social reasons for society to shift towards 100% renewable energies and a less resource-intensive way of life, it may actually seem puzzling to some people why their governments are not taking the necessary measures to to steer these major societal transformations.While progressive thinkers can explain this lack of adequate policy in terms of the constraints imposed by the current economic system and its ideological dominance, something much more profound is going on behind the scenes, not just on the theoretical analysis of economic globalization or the Neoliberalism can be limited.
Esoterically or spiritually, it is that new forces are rapidly entering the world and our institutional politicians do not have the intelligence or the decency to recognize that the old competing, corrupt and power-hungry modes of the past are coming to an end. The most extreme proponents of these ancient practices talk of nothing more than to make their countries great all over again in the struggle for power through isms of the left or right wing, which ultimately withholds the manifestation of goodwill and cooperation between nations. As always, it hits the poor and the environment, who consequently become political collateral damage from this ignorant stance.
Unfortunately, it is very rare these days to find wise men and women in the political center who consciously or intuitively perceive that it is time for politicians, these new energies that are entering the world and leading to an economic and political one Inspire transformation based on sharing, justice and right human relationships. Ultimately, the causal factor, i.e. the root of climate change, is a question of human consciousness or perception. This problem is closely related to all of the interlocking crises that define our time and which are by their very nature spiritual.
I find that very interesting and I would like to explore what you mean when you say that climate change is spiritual in its nature and results from problems of human consciousness. Does it have any value for the progressive thinker and committed citizen to reconcile his or her spiritual understanding of life with political, economic and ecological questions? This seems to be an important theme in your ongoing work, Studies on the Principle of Sharing, which examines the problems of humanity from a spiritual or esoteric perspective.
In this interview you are steering me in a completely new direction, with a completely different kind of energy and dynamism. But I like to do that, because my main concern is not to be a commentator on the political details of the COP negotiations or other UN summits, but to help spark a global public uprising based on a spiritual understanding of ours global togetherness, which I often refer to as “the one human race”. The interface between politics and spirituality is little discussed or understood in most activist circles, even if an awareness of the inner side of life is imperative if we want to grasp reality and how a just transition to a sustainable economic system can actually happen.
As already mentioned, it is unlikely that the ideological representatives of the old political way of thinking, based on power economy, competition and the selfish acquisition of resources, would be interested in a lesson on how to see the world with concentrated goodwill and a true education based on self-knowledge , can transform. But we have reached a time when the intelligent advocates for a better world - and especially the youth - are being asked to view the political issues with a more holistic, inclusive or spiritual perception, the characteristics of which are anchored in the consciousness of the heart.
If we are seriously interested in understanding the deeper spiritual implications of global resource sharing, then we need to learn how to incorporate this "new understanding of the heart" into our lobbying and political theories. It does not mean that we have to give up our various good actions for social and environmental justice or start reading certain esoteric philosophies alongside our political pursuits. There are many spiritual teachings that are very rewarding. But in our divided and marketed world it is more about exploring for ourselves the importance of the right human relationship, which can only be helpful in our current activities and brings with it a deeper understanding of how society as a whole needs to be changed . So my primary concern is how ordinary people of good will can take a different path in their thinking, with an energy that emanates from the heart and a new awareness of the interdependence of all of humanity.
When it comes to environmental issues, we can think of it as “inside and outside CO2,” or as two different but interrelated forms of pollution that threaten the sustainability of our planet in the future. External pollution, which relates to the external atmosphere and the natural environment, is already discussed extensively. The bigger problem, however, is the internal pollution that has determined the activities of mankind over the millennia, with its climax in our present-day civilization or spiritual crisis. In other words - greed, selfishness, gross ambition, arrogance, complacency, indifference, prejudice, hatred and so on, are the inner attitudes and intentions that have shaped our collective destiny and lead to further tragic effects on the environment, like we everywhere can see. The external CO2 does not come by itself, it is clearly the consequence of the internal CO2, which determines our thinking and actions, from the individual to national and international levels of government.
It is therefore ultimately impossible to achieve a safe and balanced environment by fighting the external activities of large corporations and governments alone, if the prevailing "inner" values of our society largely persist in materialistic and egocentric thinking. How can we limit the global rise in temperature to below 1.5 ° C when the pursuit of profit, power, wealth and luxury - as can already be seen in the intentions of countless millions of individuals - leads us towards overheating of 4 ° C or even drives even higher? But only the more mature environmentalists are concerned with this question of how to change the inner attitude of people. This is gradually starting to be reflected in the thinking of civil societies, for example: how important cultural values are in influencing social change.
How can we specifically benefit from trying to understand the effects of "internal CO2" and social interdependence, especially with regard to the global environmental crisis?
We previously talked about the mysterious background why governments and large companies are no longer dealing with the climate crisis, such as: leaving fossil fuels in the ground and urgently switching to clean energy in the world. In order to be able to really justify this question, it is not enough to rely on “external” explanations in order to create a systematic analysis of what is wrong with capitalism and how the economic system must be changed, but we also have to use internal and / or psychological ones Investigate the causes of this problem. Above all, the need to change how people have to change themselves.
This line of thought has value to those who grapple with the deeper spiritual nature of this planetary crisis. It requires us to learn to look at the problems of humanity from a more holistic awareness, with our hearts and minds joining in unison. It should be noted that the heart and its attributes are never complicated, but rather can be understood in the simplest possible way, which partly explains why an "inner" awareness of the world problem is difficult for intellectuals and hardened political activists.
If we adopt this heartfelt way of thinking in accordance with the example above, we will see that a switch to 100 percent renewable energy and a simpler standard of living can be achieved with little effort and in a short period of time. It is not a question of political will, but a question of spent love. Because when one recognizes all human intentions that are hidden, for example, behind the external activities of industrial fishing and agro-industry, or the breaking down of the rainforest, opencast mining and the removal of mountains, there is clearly no love involved or awe for nature; No, it is about money and profit that are based on conforming market forces and their varied financial incentives.
The term "love" should not be limited to superficial usage here; for example that we are nice to each other and live in peace with nature. What we're really interested in are the underlying psychological causes of social injustice and environmental degradation, from which the breakdown of our society originated. "Love" means in the simplest spiritual teachings and in the psychological sense "do no harm", while the very intention that is hidden behind the drive for money and profit is harmful in every respect, both to others, to the environment and to us even opposite.
If the management of a huge tar sands operation were to be found in a beautiful and secluded area, they would probably not destroy this natural environment if they were motivated by an attitude of love and awe for all that exists in this world. She would be more inclined to do something else with her life, something healing, uplifting, rather than exacerbating the destruction of the environment. When analyzing the world's problems with an inner consciousness, the only reason why individual people can make huge profits from their activities is because they have no self-knowledge or perceive what they really feel inside of them in relation to the true spiritual reality of the inside Self; for it is the lack of self-knowledge and awareness that underlies all of our problems in the end.
For many people it may be very attractive to examine the world crisis from such a vital and spiritual point of view, but you can still more clearly describe the practical benefits the progressive activist or scientist can derive from the various processes and activities with the heart rethink? What does this line of inquiry actually mean for those who long and struggle for a better world?
To help you answer this question for yourself, take the phrase "political will" and reflect for a while and you will find that this phrase itself creates a feeling of hopelessness or even despair, for it is tarnished with the illusion that the present order of things is unchangeable and with no alternative. The war we are experiencing today between the old and the new order, as already discussed, belongs to the etymology of the “political will” of the old order, the time of the Cold War. And even further back to the classic economists like John Locke and Adam Smith. It inherently means that change can only come from above, through the actions of our political leaders and those in power and influence. Those who, with sufficient pressure from the public, i.e. those from below, may make a small concession to the detriment of the elites.
In contrast to “political will”, let us use the expression “love in action” and try to imagine what that means in relation to the critical world situation. One is for the future, for the new forces and unifying energies that are rapidly entering the world, while the other represents the old order and institutions that are now rapidly falling apart amid the chaos of interlocking systemic crises. Hence, what we need most today is not the mere "will" of our governments to take necessary action - which would mean asking our political accountants who are currently running our nations - to save the world on our behalf. What we need is the manifestation of love and wisdom in the world because if the energy of love were the predominant motive behind all human actions then there would be no such thing as political accountants, nor would political activists be an issue. As I said before, the atheist cannot exist without the believer, and as a parallel analogy, the political activist cannot exist in the world without a lack of love. 
I am not suggesting that political activism in the light of our escalating social and ecological turmoil is somehow pointless or flawed in its current form, on the contrary. But if we want to see for ourselves what "love" really means, on a resource-abundant planet where millions of people are dying in poverty, where the problem is human-made climate change and where catastrophic theft is approaching and hatred is rampant in international affairs - then we just have to invoke our innate compassion and common sense. What we observe is so banal that it is actually wise, for the truth of the heart is always plain and simple. Love in the context of today's world problems is closely related to the need for detachment; Breaking away from greed, from egoism, from the old ways of aggressive competition, environmental destruction and legitimate theft.
To understand the practical benefits of this inner perspective and awareness, we should reconsider the seemingly mysterious question: What is stopping our society from moving to clean and environmentally sustainable energy, with a more equitable standard of living around the world, considering how easy and quick it is could this transition be achieved? To reiterate - in the spiritual and psychological realms the answer is not complicated - it is just always a lack of love. Because without the manifestation of love in this world, without the awakening of the spiritual heart center of the whole of humanity, any thought of a more open-minded and social social order is wrong. We are talking about love that is accepted and accepted by the majority of the population. Any policy imposed from above to limit consumption levels or resource sharing will inevitably be rejected, fought and ultimately rejected. Can we really imagine such a policy being enacted by law by our current governments?
What this means for us personally is very relevant when we apply this investigation to the question of global social transformation. For example, when preparations for the war in Iraq began following the tragedy of September 11, 2003, the attention of the whole world was focused on this one event. How long do we think it will be before the world gets the same amount of attention at the risk of a spiraling climate crisis? With the same level of responsiveness and compassion? Because climate change and its effects are definitely even more threatening! Similarly, we should consider what it takes for mainstream society to devote all of its attention to the reality of world hunger. A crisis that goes hand in hand with environmental problems and could also be resolved if love were used extensively. But when we consider the rampant complacency and indifference of humanity, where so many people do not want to be disturbed in their comfortable "lifestyle", the wider meaning of this inner consciousness can only be left to our intuition.
There seem to be a growing number of individuals and groups who are realizing the need for a spiritual response to the problem of climate change, one based on new meta-narratives of our connectedness and attitude towards nature, of responsibility and reverence to her. In your view, can you explain the origin of the global ecological crisis from the internal or spiritual perspective that you have vaguely touched on?
Humanity has lived in illusions for many centuries, and now that these illusions are rapidly collapsing, the whole world seems disoriented and confused with no clear way forward. Many of the beliefs and creeds that perpetuated the old ways of thinking are now being challenged by new scientific and anthropological knowledge, if not by simple, common sense.This would also confirm the culturally ingrained belief that greed and selfishness is the driving factor in human evolution, or that competition and inequality is the natural order of society, that war and poverty are an inevitable fact of life. We are all familiar with these illusions that are perpetuated by outdated beliefs, even if we already perceive their error within our own life experience. For example, who today would readily declare that wealth is the key to happiness, or that power and success are the rewards of hard work, competitiveness, and personal ambition?
Figuratively speaking, politicians and corporate corporations act like a giant industrial plant that is constantly producing these illusions to such an extent that they have developed some sort of unintentional, systematic process that allows them to go on as usual. And when the old, existing illusions no longer work, they are simply replaced with a new version. It is enlightening to observe in this light the focus on enterprise technologies and market-driven solutions in combating climate change, as if we could solve the climate crisis with the same for-profit, competitive, and materialistic mentality that created this crisis in the first place. From an internal perspective, humanity is so conditioned by the ancient illusions that we refuse to recognize that global crises - like the massive influx of refugees and migrants into Europe, the growing inequality within a country, or indeed the environmental crisis within their totality - forcing us to perceive this reality and to fundamentally change our whole attitude to life. But humanity seems so unteachable that it will continue to chase money, power and success even as the world around them sinks into chaos.
All these illusions are based on the belief that man can separate himself from the environment with the intention of having power “over” nature by trying to manipulate its laws and to possess the fruits freely given by it instead of trying to live in a simple, harmonious and natural cycle. But these are very insignificant forces that humans have developed through nature, however impressive it may be that we can plunder the riches of the earth for our enormous cities that shine in luxury. Even our most advanced technologies were not designed to work “with” the forces of nature, and therefore all of them contribute, either directly or indirectly, to the slow destruction of the earth. Seen in this way, humans play with a time bomb, unless they change their inner attitude, because nature per se is not an illusion and will turn against us in the end, or at least it may appear that way.
Of course, the deeper spiritual truth is that nature cannot take revenge on humanity for the collective offense if it is forever firmly connected with nature as an integral part. Man is life and he stands exactly in the middle, between the higher spiritual levels and the lower levels of nature, the animal, plant and mineral kingdom. So when man tries to dominate the natural environment and overuse its limited resources, which brings destruction and immeasurable suffering with it, he separates not only from all realms of nature, but also from the spiritual reality of the One Life, of that he is an inseparable part. So it is not the weather that has to change, but only the person himself, as he finally perceives the extent of his illusions and wrong intentions. In other words, we need to learn how to know ourselves and leave things as they are, rather than trying to manipulate the natural world with our misguided wills in the name of profit and the megalomania of human ability and technological advancement.
Not only do we seek power over the laws of nature, but we also harass them with our almost psychotic identification with the human illusion of domination and separation from the environment. History has known certain personalities known for identifying with illusions of personal power and greatness, even though we now live in a world ruled by large multinational corporations that embody similar illusions and, in an institutionalized way, to an even greater extent . Hence, these huge, for-profit organizations are predictably more dangerous in their intentions, given how they manipulate laws and government policies for their own ends. We can also observe that this is the indirect reason for corporate lobbying, marketing and advertising - namely, to create and perpetuate detrimental illusions in our society, no matter how damaging these results to the natural environment and human spiritual development in terms of self-knowledge.
It is clearly stated not the identification with ideas, beliefs or isms that worry us here, but the widespread identification in our culture with dangerous illusions that slow down the spiritual development of humanity as a whole. We may have begun our pursuit of knowledge and power over nature with a kind of innocence since the time of the Enlightenment. Without a doubt, there are many talented scientists and technicians today who have very good intentions to grasp the secrets of nature and thereby gain dominion over the earth. This attitude is propagated throughout the architecture of our educational institutions as well, where even those who attend elite schools are indeed conditioned to plunder the planet and in their quest to become rich, powerful, valued, or supposedly successful do not shy away from anything.
I have discussed elsewhere how those who are supposedly "well educated" are in fact perpetuating today's disastrous social and environmental trends, largely because they are being pushed to attain high social status and get on with it adapt according to the selfish art of marketing.  However, it is the visionless pursuit of endless profit that has become the determining factor in world politics since the 1980s, leading to such divisions and devastation that we are ultimately forced to recognize our inability to control the natural environment and control it to loot without restriction. We could describe the combined forces of commercialization as the trigger of the great illusion of humanity that deceives everyone, from the common man who dreams of owning a large mansion and fast cars as the way to happiness, to the corporate lobbyists in Capitol Hill and the war planners at the Pentagon who seek power and profit all over the world, regardless of the cost.
We are all servants of these forces to some extent, assisting them by adapting to the illusions of society, even when the environment is metaphorically on its knees asking for mercy. Yet much of humanity does not seem to be aware of the harmful effects of rampant commercialization, which we can only attribute to the immense power of illusions. If these illusions continue to overwhelm our collective consciousness, it will be like a giant supercomputer that will gradually take over people's thoughts until we witness the outbreak of a nuclear world war. However far-fetched such a prospect, please use your intuition to ponder the ultimate destination to which the illusions of commercialization lead us and to see if you can agree with this observation.
It would be helpful if you could expand on what you said. They say that we all serve the forces of commercialization to some extent, and therefore we are all part of this great illusion. How do we support the existing socio-economic order of global capitalism as individuals, and how do we contribute to the possible prospect of unlimited war between nation-states, which indeed does not seem very plausible in this new millennium?
Many of us blame our governments, companies or the system for global problems without realizing that we are an integral part of this system and support it through our own thoughts and actions. Our training and conditioning, whether through schools or our community, trains us to be docile consumers who maintain the system in its current destructive form. How we all serve the forces of commercialization should therefore be easy to understand.
For example, by consuming the products and services of a globalized market economy, despite its unfair structural regulation, as most people do in Western society and in the affluent parts of developing countries, we are indirectly participating in a multifaceted system of exploitation and destruction. This is a fact that many people recognize and understand today. Hence the whole movement of fair trade, consumer boycotts and so-called ethical consumption. Millions of educated people understand that multinational corporations are responsible for land grabbing, deforestation, poisoned rivers and pollution, or the exploitation of the workforce in developing countries through low wages, poor working conditions, and so on.
We can blame our governments for supporting these practices through their various subsidies, tax breaks, and other incentives, and we can also blame the big corporations for hypnotizing us with myriads of their products that we consume and those with immense profits will resell. But the fact remains that the vast majority of ordinary people are willing participants in the great illusion of rampant commercialization. In increasing numbers, we support and exacerbate the unfair regulations of the world economy through our daily pattern of mass consumption. Thus, the illusion that this way of life can be sustained becomes a vicious circle that repeats itself over and over and worsens with each passing day.
The more we try to sweep this deeper reality under the rug by placing a label on our activities related to the social norm or contemporary fashion, the more we cannot escape the fact that we are all responsible, albeit sometimes indirectly, for the destruction of nature and the exploitation of others through our conformity with the existing consumer-oriented economic system. The shameless feasting and consuming at seasonal celebrations or festivals is the most relevant example of how most of us participate in this great illusion - whatever our political convictions or activist efforts may be. 
Do you notice that there is a psychological equivalence between our careless consumption habits and how we choose new government leaders? Or how we often blindly consume products without knowing or wanting to know anything about their origin? Likewise, we vote for our politicians and expect them to solve global problems on our behalf. We know that large supermarket chains around the world take advantage of smallholders, which means that every time we buy vegetables from the chains, we are effectively promoting that exploitation. Even if I do not vote for a corporate politician who is elected, I will vote for him indirectly if I conform to the social norm that he governs and I take no action against it.
We like to call this system "capitalism" and blame it for all human problems; but we have reached a point where we have to wonder what capitalism really means in a world filled with violence and cruelty? Is all the suffering we are experiencing today really the fault of capitalism per se, or is it the result of enormous man-made violence that works in all directions - against the natural environment, against the animal kingdom, against each other and against ourselves?
If we are able to see the world's problems from this holistic and psychological point of view, we may see that our current socio-economic systems are based on rampant commercialization and indeed represent a war. Many analysts speak of the possibility of a Third World War, which will result from escalating military conflicts. But the worst war on earth is actually happening as a result of the combination of greed, self-centeredness and indifference that makes commercialization even worse. Ultimately it is a war against life itself, against humanity, against spiritual development, and yet almost everyone is more or less involved in this war in slow motion. How can we implement a plan or framework for a sustainable world economy when mass consumption and unrestrained commercialization are the determining factors in world politics - and when we are unsuspectingly involved in this self-destructive violence?
Let's go back to your first observations on the spiritual dimensions of global interlocking crises that are seldom discussed in political or activist circles. Can you perhaps go into more detail about what you describe as “inner CO2” that are the deeper roots of human problems?
No matter how much data and evidence we have about environmental limitations, air pollution, and climate disruptions, we still haven't learned the most basic lesson of how to live and evolve on this planet without disrupting the elements of nature. The inevitable truth is that nature as a whole is a living being, as various scientists and philosophers have long suspected, but it is not just the material and objective world that man pollutes and destroys with his activities. There are two worlds, both the visible and the invisible, and it is the hidden side of nature that, despite all the ancient wisdom teachings that have always been given to mankind, we do not want to listen or acknowledge it as reality. Just as we cannot see gas or CO2 with the naked eye, there are invisible entities in nature that exist and have not yet been scientifically proven, although they play a crucial role in regulating and maintaining our planetary biosphere - both in its microcosmic and in its own also in their macrocosmic manifestation. Therefore, in our ignorance, we continue to cause destruction in the environment by preventing these hidden elements of nature from performing their proper function, and man in his misguided attempt to have power over his environment causes fatal consequences.
To cite an important example: a great many environmental scientists today are concerned with the earth's atmosphere and its interrelationship with other natural systems, but only a few deal with the noise pollution that mankind generates on a global level. However, from the inner psychological or esoteric spiritual perspective that we are exploring, the incredible noise produced by all countries in the world has an extremely harmful effect on the hidden elements of nature; which in turn have a detrimental effect on the known elements of nature, such as wind, rain, oceans and so on. To understand the reason why this accumulated noise is so harmful to the environment, we just need to think about the effects of its origin - like the activity of heavy and extractive industries, millions of cars, planes and container ships in constant transit, or the relentless conflicts and the destruction in war zones.
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