Finding Existential Hope in Humanity with SJ Beard

In the last two decades it has become increasingly common to hear about existential risk, the possibility that humanity may be heading for extinction or global collapse. This risk is very real and deserves to be taken seriously, but risk is only one way that we can look at future possibilities.

SJ Beard will explore what happens when we shift our focus and think about the same problems in terms of ‘existential hope’, the possibility that humanity may be the first species in the history of our planet not only able to contemplate the possibility of our annihilation but to shape our own futures to avoid it.

They will argue that focusing on the opportunities of existential hope, rather than the anxieties of existential risk, can help us change our own relationship with the many global problems we face; calling our attention to what actually needs to change and how we can all seek our own way of making that happen.

Building existential hope is not something we can do over night, but is a long-term process, building on many generations of dreamers, engineers, and activists who have taught us how to explore speculative futures, identify and respond to complex hazards, build cooperation and consensus across boundaries, and work together to achieve our collective aims.

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