Wrapped up in books – The system change inspiration for restoring balance with nature

The first two parts of The Liminal Forest walking project are very much concerned with how deforestation and industrialisation broke our connection to trees and nature and how we’ve sought to rebuild and restore that connection over the centuries through art, culture, travel, walking and activism.

The final part of the walking journey, which takes place through Snowdonia National Park and along the Dee river valley towards Offa’s Dyke and the English border, is all about our current systems and how they must change if we really stand a chance of restoring balance and making peace with nature.

A number of important books continue to shape and inspire my thinking and writing.

Jane Davidson’s FutureGen – Lessons from a Small Country – was a crucial in understanding the philosophy and policy decisions that led to Wales creating its landmark Future Generations Act.

David Wallace-Wells’ The Uninhabitable Earth offered both mindboggling detail and also important perspective of the scale of the climate catastrophe humanity faces.

James Thornton and Martin Goodman’s Client Earth opened my eyes to the role our legal systems must play in reshaping our relationship with nature.

Kate Raworth’s Doughnut Economics was a breath of fresh air when considering how our economic, financial and political systems need to radically evolve (immediately) to meet the challenges – and how it is possible for them to do so now.

Roman Krznaric’s The Good Ancestor showed me how we all must take a leadership role in making sure the legacy we leave for our children and their children is one we would want for ourselves.

Janine Benyus’ Biomimicry, meanwhile, demonstrated the art of the possible when we learn from, and embrace the teachings of nature in order to build better and create truly sustainable infrastructure and systems.

Finally, a special mention not for a book but for a podcast. Through the past 12 months or so Jon Richardson and the Futurenauts’ How to Survive the Future amused, scared, intrigued, informed and inspired me.

All the books that I’ve drawn on in creating The Liminal Forest are in the reading list on the site. I’ll keep adding more as I come across them and digest their wisdom.

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