cover image Life After Doom: Wisdom and Courage for a World Falling Apart

Life After Doom: Wisdom and Courage for a World Falling Apart

Brian D. McLaren. St. Martin’s Essentials, $28 (304p) ISBN 978-1-25089-327-7

In this bracing study, theologian McLaren (Faith After Doubt) challenges readers to recognize “the dangerous future into which we are presently plunging ourselves, our descendants, and our fellow creatures.” He casts aside capitalism and “socially disengaged and anti-ecological” Christian theology as tools for tackling climate collapse in favor of a “creative path of resistance” that prioritizes sacrifice, courage, kindness, and wisdom gleaned from “indigenous leaders” and the Bible. (In McLaren’s telling, Jesus is as an Indigenous prophet who challenged the “supremacy” of the day’s dominant civilizations with values of love.) While the emphasis isn’t on action items (suggestions include connecting with neighbors and friends over shared fears, as well as reading a list of books by Indigenous authors), McLaren motivates without resorting to panic and provides insight on why it’s hard to come to grips with an existential threat as one’s brain ricochets between immediate, primal survival instincts, higher-order risk assessment, and concerns about friends and family. It’s a valuable resource for believers concerned about climate change. (Apr.)