They are misguided. (The climate skeptics.)
- True? Yes, feels true.
- Sure? No. It’s just an opinion
- What happens when I believe that thought?
- I am certain they are wrong.
- I have plenty of reasons why they are wrong.
- Hardly any scientist in climatology doubt that (a) there is a significant climate change happening, and (b) it is – at least to some extent – fueled by human actions.
- More importantly, focusing on if climate change is human caused is strangely misguided. It distracts attention from what we can agree on, and practical issues that are far more important. For instance, climate change is happening, so we need to work together to help people deal with it, especially in poorer areas of the world. Affordable petroleum will run out, and petroleum creates many other problems besides climate change, so we need to join resources to shift into a renewable energy system. It will happen, so why not put resources into being ahead of the curve? That will also be far more profitable in the long run. The countries and companies that now put resources into renewable energy, will most likely be the ones who do well in the future. Finally, putting time and energy into a discussion on whether climate change is human caused or not distracts attention from other and far more important topics, such as the need to reduce human population and consumption worldwide.
- I find support for my views. Just about all climatologist are on my side.
- I put down their views. Only non-climatologists are on their side, and they are often paid by the petroleum industry.
- I question their motives. Why do they focus on whether it is human caused or not? It seems profoundly irrelevant since we need to prepare for climate change and shift to renewable energy sources, and can do so in a way that is profitable in terms of economy, health and well being. Those things need to happen anyway, so why not focus on what we agree on? Why not take a more practical approach? What is their motivation for derailing the discussion?
- I make them wrong and myself right. I experience separation to them, to life, to myself.
- I get upset, frustrated, angry.
- When did I first have that thought? In the 80s when I remember first having this conversation, that time with one of my teachers. I tried to get him to see that we need to shift to a non-petroleum based energies anyway – it is after all a limited supply, and we need a supply of petroleum in the future for what it is really needed for. But he still was focused on whether there is climate change and whether it is human created.
- What am I afraid would happen if I didn’t have that thought? I am afraid I would agree with their view. I am afraid the public discourse will continue to be misguided.
- What is not possible for me when I have that thought? I am not able to find peace with the situation. I am not able to take in the valid points they have. I am not able to stay more clear in the conversation.
- Who would I be without that thought?
- Clear. Curious. Interested in the validity in their view. Interested in why they hold onto their views, what their needs are behind it.
- Seeing all of us as on the same side, in the same boat. Interested in finding a solution that works for the different sides.
- They are not misguided.
- Hm. They have valid points. For instance, we don’t know exactly how much of the current climate change is human caused. It’s important to explore further, although it is of less importance in the big picture.
- They are also right in that science and politics have mixed on the pro-climate change side, although that is equally true for their side.
- And if they say that this distracts from other and more important topics, they are right there too. Population and consumption are far more important topics, although the shift away from petroleum-based industry, transportation and agriculture is also hugely important.
- I am misguided.
- Yes. When I believe my initial thought, I am misguided. I become one-sided too, just as they do. I become exactly what I see in them: misguided, irrational, caught up in emotions, mixing science and politics, not open for the validity of their arguments.
- My thinking is misguided.
- Yes, as above.
- They are not misguided.
I notice a change after this inquiry. More friendly, seeing how we are in the same boat. There is still some charge here, so more to see.
Also, I notice that I used the turnarounds to open the door slightly to other perspectives, but mostly to confirm my habitual ones. At least, the door is a little more open, I am able to see – and admit to (!) – what is going on, and also see the beauty of small steps. Sometimes, that’s what’s needed.
Another answer to the turnaround they are not misguided: After receiving a comment from a fellow Byron Katie/Adya fan and a climate skeptic, I see that climate skeptics are not misguided because all stories have limited truth. It is healthy to question generally accepted stories.
Also, there is a big difference between not believing the story of climate change and denying it. It is fully possible to not believe in climate change and yet use the story as a guide for own actions. And it is fully possible to deny it and still act in a way that is life-centered or still have good intentions.
I also read a news story about climate change issues getting mixed up in the general anxiety many experience. Some climate change deniers may come from fear. They may feel overwhelmed by the possible effects of climate change and chose to push it aside for themselves. When I recognize that, there is empathy and compassion, especially since I know I sometimes do the same in other areas of my life.