Civilization depends on an implicit degree of general optimism. It is a collaborative exercise. Civilization amplifies and accumulates cooperation between strangers. If you expect that you can trust a stranger, that is optimism. If you expect to be cheated or hurt, that is pessimism. Societies that bring the most good to the most people require that people be trusted more than they are distrusted; that they expect more good than harm; they require that people, in general, have more hope than fear. Societies that have more pessimism than optimism tend not to prosper.
The default stance in any thriving civilization is optimistic: it operates on the assumption that in general, most people, most of the time, will cooperate. They can be trusted to be honest and this cooperation will produce positive results that add up to more than the sum. Civilization requires trust; trust requires optimism; civilization requires optimism.Kevin Kelly
Mar 09 2023
Post Capitalist Philanthropy: Healing wealth in the time of collapse
Post Capitalist Philanthropy takes us on a journey from the history of wealth accumulation to the current logic of late-stage capitalism to the lived possibilities for...
Feb 21 2023
Bangladesh is a global pioneer in preparing for climate migrants
Climate change may be a global phenomenon, but its impacts are felt locally. So it follows that solutions to this global crisis also have to be local.
Feb 21 2023
Why understanding limits is the key to humanity’s future
Why have many people become obsessed with either denying or overcoming limits, to the point where they appear to feel that life can have meaning only if it’s tied to...
Feb 08 2023
The best way to deal with shocks is by combining diverse responses
Humankind’s best chance to deal with looming turbulences and crises is by diversifying response strategies
Feb 08 2023
The verbs of resilience
The clusters are focused on building regenerative capacity, sensing emerging risks, responding to disruption, and learning and transformation.
Jan 16 2023
In an age of constant disaster, what does it mean to rebuild?
Each catastrophe is a test of what kind of society we’ve built. And each recovery offers a chance, however fleeting, to build another.
Dec 12 2022
Omega Resilience Awards + HOMEF are now seeking polycrisis fellows in Africa
HOMEF, the Omega Resilience Awards (ORA) partner in Africa, has just launched their search for African fellows working to address the global polycrisis.
Nov 18 2022
Resilience for compounding & cascading events
There was a time not long ago when disasters would strike one at a time, and communities would have time to recover and rebuild. Today, however, there is a new normal...
Sep 24 2021
Power: Limits and prospects for human survival
In this Omega conversation, Omega founder Michael Lerner is in conversation with Richard Heinberg from the Post Carbon Institute.
Apr 29 2021
Philanthropy’s problem with single-issue solutions
The problems philanthropy seeks to remedy are big, messy, and complicated. Yet far too often, we try to combat them with simple responses.