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Ecopsychology

Our bulimic appetite for the Earth.
Ecopsycology
Photo originally from Calvin Klein ad in Vogue, Sept. 2010

My bulimic client Sally arrives in a dreadful panic.

She has had a bad relapse into bingeing and vomiting. This is something she used to do every day, sometimes many times a day, for 20 years. After a period of abstinence, she is more aware of how self-destructive this is, and she is really scared she might die – maybe her stomach will burst or her heart will fail. Yet she cannot stop, the drive to binge is so strong.

As I listen to her, I can feel the panic rising in my body also. I know that it will take time before she can give up her all-consuming habit, yet she is in a life-and-death struggle.

My mind flips out to our ecological crisis for a second. We are caught in a similar vise: consuming the earth and causing such destruction to our habitat that we may not survive as a species. This is ecocide. We are warned we have just a few years to reduce our carbon emissions before climate change becomes irreversible. The pressure on us now to change, and fast, feels almost unbearable. Will we make it … or will we consume ourselves to death?

Mary-Jayne Rust is Jungian analyst who lectures and writes on ecopsychology. mjrust.net.

48 comments on the article “Ecopsychology”

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tkaptur

Don't you know global warming is fake, it's not because of man - and man can do whatever he wants to this planet - which is why the EPA's budget is being cut - and no body seems to care.

tkaptur

Don't you know global warming is fake, it's not because of man - and man can do whatever he wants to this planet - which is why the EPA's budget is being cut - and no body seems to care.

Reyms

You are part of the Planet too. And if I can do whatever I wish to the Planet, then you won't have any problem when I smash you to pieces and return you to the Planet, you ungrateful bastard.

Reyms

You are part of the Planet too. And if I can do whatever I wish to the Planet, then you won't have any problem when I smash you to pieces and return you to the Planet, you ungrateful bastard.

tkaptur

Do I need to apologize you didn't understand my sarcastic remark? Perhaps I should learn to simplify my comments to amplify my opinions more appropriately. How am I ungrateful? I really hope we're on the same side, the comment you left was clever but not relative to what I ment. The government and these large corporations are killing the entire human race and our planet - and you want to use me as fertilizer?

tkaptur

Do I need to apologize you didn't understand my sarcastic remark? Perhaps I should learn to simplify my comments to amplify my opinions more appropriately. How am I ungrateful? I really hope we're on the same side, the comment you left was clever but not relative to what I ment. The government and these large corporations are killing the entire human race and our planet - and you want to use me as fertilizer?

Reyms

That sarcasm was very cryptic. I am sorry, I thought you really meant that part: "man can do whatever he wants to the Planet".

Reyms

That sarcasm was very cryptic. I am sorry, I thought you really meant that part: "man can do whatever he wants to the Planet".

tkaptur

Suppose it's more my fault, can't express voice inflections, really wanted to get the ball rolling though.

tkaptur

Suppose it's more my fault, can't express voice inflections, really wanted to get the ball rolling though.

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