January 18, 2018

Hi there,

Yesterday I interviewed someone with a PhD in Geography about the future of conservation. He has spent his career working in biological field stations – like Jasper Ridge at Stanford – where they study behavior and changes in plants and animals in their particular location. We spent some time talking about the science of climate change. After citing a few recent studies, he leaned back in his chair and said:

“The truth is that we don’t know very much about what’s happening now or what will happen in the future.”  

That got me thinking. This concept of uncertainty and the unknown has popped up several times in the past week in the articles and books I’ve read and conversations I’ve had. Like maybe I should pay attention to it because it keeps showing up.
For example:

+  Rebecca Solnit writes in Hope in the Dark that the beauty and power of hope is in its uncertainty. We don’t know what the future will bring. And who knows, maybe the future is just, equitable, healthy, verdant, and beautiful. Right?

+  T.A. Barron, author of The Ancient One and the Merlin series, told me that he keeps a copy of A Sense of Wonder by Rachel Carson on his desk. I do too. It sits under my laptop stand so that its wisdom can do some kind of osmosis thing into my computer and into my work. (I do not have a PhD in biology and therefore can believe this is possible)

+  The dance of knowing and not knowing is beautifully told in Learned Leagueby Hannah Goldfield in last Sunday’s New York Times magazine.

What kind of just, equitable, healthy, verdant, beautiful things are going to happen today? Tomorrow? In 2018? In our children’s lifetimes?

I’m wondering and also doing my best to manifest all those things.

Happy Thursday,