The world and nation we've
known are coming to an end. It's not that we don't have a future, but
the future we do have will differ radically from what we have come to
experience as normal. Financial meltdowns, failed wars, melting ice
caps, protracted unemployment, the end of cheap oil, and unprecedented
droughts, floods, and heat waves all point to one central reality: Like
it or not, it is all but certain that both as individuals and as a
nation our futures will be marked by disruption and discontinuity.
Although this is a scary thought, Authentic Hope builds on a more
positive premise: that we have both an opportunity and a responsibility
to shape the quality of our future. Whether events five, ten, or thirty
years from now play out according to our worst fears or our better
selves will be determined by many factors, including our capacity
honestly to face problems, to envision and embody alternatives, and to
cultivate and sustain hope.