The Comox Valley C.G. Jung Society (https://comoxjung.com/about-us/) strives to bring awareness, insight and meaningful dialogue on issues that impact the wellbeing of our hearts, minds, psyches, bodies and communities. Today, few topics are as heated or angst provoking as that of climate change. We are under a deluge of terrifying statistics, images, and reports of ominous outcomes regarding global warming or climate change. Many of us are also rumbling, as Brene Brown would say, with our own roles in creating the problem.

By now, any debate as to whether anthropogenic global warming (AGW) or climate change is real or not is over, but our feelings about these issues are far from resolved. We are increasingly anxious! For those experiencing denial, it is the anxiety of our core ideology being under attack. For those experiencing visceral awareness of these issues, it is the anxiety of feeling helpless in the face of a “climate apocalypse” potentially impacting us, but definitely impacting our children and grandchildren.

Of many global problems that terrify us, this one is a disturbing nightmare increasingly shared in therapy offices and in coffee shop conversations daily. What is it about climate change that causes such vehement reactions to even mention the phrase? How do we deal with our anger at the powers that be, the hostilities between “deniers” and the supporters of Greta Thunberg and Autumn Peltier, or the undercurrents of guilt about our own ineffectualness? Part of the answer to addressing our anxiety is being able to understand it.

John Betts, a Zurich trained Jungian Analyst currently practicing in Victoria (http://jungian.ca/about-john/), suggests that psychoanalysis aids in understanding these reactions. He states that we must “appreciate how we found ourselves in this predicament and how our neoliberal politic-economic models of the past 40+ years not only created but intensified the problem. Global warming has been viewed as the greatest threat to capitalism, but more significantly, the greatest threat to our planetary ecosystem.” Betts adds that “digging into anxiety about AGW reveals how the profound inequality of the world has to be addressed” – but how?

In his provocative lecture, on February 21, 2020 at 7 pm, Betts proposes solutions, but warns they require a fundamental reworking of our politics and mentality – attending to the contents of our psyches. We need to understand why we are anxious in the first place. Based on powerful models of Jungian psychoanalysis, Betts will address why we experience such deep anxiety around anthropogenic climate change, and how we might begin to attend to our feelings about it. The lecture is held at Stan Hagen Theatre, North Island College, Courtenay. Doors open at 6:30, the lecture is 7-9 pm. Tickets are only available at the door (cash only please) and are $20 for public, $15 for members, and $10 for students. For more information, email cvjungsociety@gmail.com or see the website comoxjung.com or find us on Facebook.

Comox Valley C.G. Jung Society