I think capitalism will eventually have to be phased out if we are going to truly have an ecological society. In the beginning, capitalism will be necessary to give the social ecology movement the momentum it needs. It would take much longer to achieve the realization of an ecological society without it. However, if consumption is the problem, we cannot consume our way out of it. Green products are a great step in the right direction but the collaborative consumerism discussed previously in class should be the ultimate goal.
I do believe humans can eventually sever our tangible connection to nature. We can distance ourselves from the outside world, from interacting with the physical parts of nature, as we continue to depend more and more upon technology to help us with the most basic tasks. I thoroughly appreciate my smartphone and my laptop, but it has become clear to me just how crippling these devices can be. The time my computer crashed provides a great example. Seeing my screen go black and being unable to turn it back on initially incited a feeling of panic. After placing it in the hands of a specialist, I had the most relaxing three days of my semester. Being unable to use my computer allowed to me engage in other things I enjoyed, even while I was acutely aware of how heavily I depended on technology. I realized that it is incredibly useful, but it can also incapacitate me from completing the most basic tasks on my own. Using other resources, like the library, to find information instead of just googling the topic is a simple example. Our escalating dependence on technology decreases our desire to engage with the outside world and in that we lose our tangible connection to nature.
I do think we will always have an intangible connection, however. I don’t know how far the connection extends, but I do believe we are connected to nature in some way. Harming the earth inevitably harms us, but beyond an anthropocentric view, we were meant to be in communion with nature. I hold this belief as part of my Christian faith. According to the Biblical point of view, God created the Garden of Eden in the beginning with man and woman living in peace with all nature and animals. That was how it was created to be. We have cast that opportunity aside but it still stands as the ideal.