A Book Review by Carolyn Baker
Where do you find a detailed manual of psycho-spiritual preparation for the end of the world as we know it? More importantly, where do you find it in one volume?
They could have emphasized the science of climate chaos or the urgency of knowing how to grow our own food and access water in a world on fire. They could have researched geographic locations where climate chaos is reported to be less severe, and they could have analyzed a number of intentional communities who are living and working together to consciously and cooperatively survive the collapse of systems, but they didn’t.
Instead, they chose to focus deeply and explicitly on the inner work that our withering, sweltering, tectonic-shifting planet is pleading with us to take on without our looking back.
In How to Live In a Chaotic Climate, LaUra Schmidt and Aimee Lewis Reau and their pal, Chelsie Rivera move beyond the intellectual masturbation of theories and opinions and jettison to the heart of the matter, well actually the heart.
Not only do they accompany us as they ask us to “accept the severity of our predicament” and “live with uncertainty,” but then they shamelessly ask us to honor our mortality and the mortality of everything and everyone. They are bold in their assumptions of our courage and willingness to “show up” and “do the inner work.” Wouldn’t a book like this be better-received if it belabored the finer points of permaculture survival? Wouldn’t it be more emotionally comfortable for the reader to view maps of Arctic and Antarctic ice-melt? Wouldn’t this book be better-received if it didn’t ask us to be or do anything different?
But you see, LaUra and Aimee have never been about comfort or acclaim. In 2016 they founded Good Grief Network. Need I say more about the boldness of such an endeavor? But I will. Being informed and re-formed by their own wounding and their healing journeys, they have been able to grasp on a cellular level what all humans need to metabolize about our formidable future and articulate it in ways that most can receive.
Most remarkably, How to Live In A Chaotic Climate offers not merely perceptions but nuts and bolts practices for living with passion, compassion, and purpose as we navigate the present moment and a future that we probably can’t even fathom in real time. That’s why it is crucial to notice the book’s subtitle: “10 Steps To Reconnect With Ourselves, Our Communities, and Our Planet.” It doesn’t get more feet-on-the-ground than that dear reader, and if you want to save your sanity and open your heart wider at the same time, you must read, savor, and apply How To Live In a Chaotic Climate.
To preorder How to Live in a Chaotic Climate: https://www.shambhala.com/how-to-live-in-a-chaotic-climate.html
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