Cataclysm 

 

To the survivors:

 

…The world waits, sputters, gasps and chokes down a disappointed breath—realizing there is no great event to save us from ourselves.

 

 

Just breathe…

 

 

Nothing is happening.  There is no 2012 Doomsday, no Great Cataclysm.  Instead doomsday unfolds slowly, all around us, inside of us, like thick crude oil, every day.  Frozen in gridlock, wrapped in plastic: our lives spent in slavery to the marketplace.  This is the slow-motion real-time cataclysm of global capitalism, our lives lived under the thrall of materialism and the spectacle society: entertainment-based consumption to dull the emptiness inherent in incessant craving for more, the tiny gnawing sensation in the pits of stomachs and backs of heads thatsomething is really wrong here.  Here, behind the masked violence of the marketplace—a way of life dictated by defilement, controlled by currency.

 

 

That is to say, infatuation with cultural narratives of doomsday prophecies ultimately only serve to atomize and distract us from the real disaster: the cruise missile atomic bomb of industrial civilization we’re all in, aimed straight at the barely-beating heart of our own mother, Earth.  Our fantastic stories rattle the bars of our cages of routine—we want out!  But the yoke of control on our backs has made escape seem so monumental that we settle for surrogate fantasies.  We entertain the pain away, shop ‘til the horror inside us drops. 

 

 

That is to say, the great future shift we all hope for waits, already inside of us, in the daily decisions we make, in the awareness of the far-reaching subtle consequences of our actions, in the loving communities of empowered resistance we forge, in the wild places not yet encased in steel and concrete, in the tactile primacy of Do-It-Yourself, in the unknown potential we’ve yet to realize.

 

 

That is to say, the façade of our unsustainable lifestyle will persist through 2012 and beyond, despite our nihilistic or hopeful stories to the contrary.  It will persist because it’s carefully held in place by an infinitely complex web of economic, social, and cultural relationships.  It will persist until each of us tears it down, directly, physically, right here and right now, with our daily thoughts, attitudes, and actions.

 

 

Eternally not holding my breath,

Nick Baxter