Buying and Selling Pleasure and Purpose

Part of "commercial-oriented neo-survivalism" is based on the premise that buying things will make you feel better. This is no different than consumer capitalism in general: Buy Guichi, feel good is the same as Buy Emergency Essentials, feel good. Stockpiling is not "prepping," it's just buying. We need to get used to that and move people beyond that simple approach. We need instead to look at sustainable, resilient approaches to security. Once upon a time, wealth meant security. Over the last hundred years we've become convinced that wealth equals luxury. In an unstable and simplifying world, going back to wealth = security is an essential lifestyle move. Stockpiling alone does not do that.

Other aspects of survivalism involve a less consumerist-based concept, and specifically I mean here those focusing on training and exercise, the development of essential life skills, and particularly I think those which are substantially more primitive-focused than the best 21st century technology. I mean here basic skills such as gardening food, cooking from scratch, hunting, processing meat, and so forth. Whole Foods is fine, but for security and sustainability reasons, let's move beyond that to homegrown foods.

Science, it seems, is coming to understand the problem of Progress about our bodies, too. Progress, as some call it, is not always a good thing. The article here has two great quotes:

"Obesity is a consequence of Homo sapiens carrying into an era of abundance, leisure and warmth the physiology that evolved in a world marked by barely enough food, constant physical activity and dangerous cold."

"We are living in a very comfortable time," said Wouter D. van Marken Lichtenbelt, a physiologist at Maastricht University who led the Dutch study. "But we did not evolve in such a time."

So, if you plan to "survive" (whatever it is: unemployment, zombie apocalypse, another recession, an earthquake or tornado) how can you plan now to fall back on your own biology to save you? What can you do to make survivalism a coping strategy, and not just a shopping list?

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