Free-fall – “We Can Fix It “ – A series of postings offering perspective and commentary on art and global environmental issues

Converging Worlds 5.30, 5/30/03, 10:15 PM, 16C, 9500x7640 (517+2940), 133%, JC 5.28.03 hyp, 1/10 s, R74.7, G52.8, B53.6
article top

A friend and I were recently discussing the prevailing state of affairs
dominating world news and the human outlook. After we got past Covid
and the raging war in Europe, we couldn’t avoid the recently released
United Nations report on climate change.

IPCC: “Window to avert catastrophic climate change is quickly closing”
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres called the report’s
conclusion “damning.”


“This report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is a litany of
broken climate promises. It is a file of shame, cataloging the empty pledges
that put us firmly on track towards an unlivable world.”

My friend said she was disturbed but was certain that . . . “we can fix it.”


Natural habitats, ecosystems and living species that have evolved over
millions of years, only to be quickly and casually annihilated in the wake of
human profit driven activity, do not bounce back with the application of
quick technical fixes. They disappear and do not resurrect. The best that
we can try do is slow it down, stop further damage. However . . . we
haven’t skipped a beat but rather have intensified destructive activity
moving us ever closer to an extinction scenario.

Given the reality, of a world, controlled by profit -driven industries and
governed by their political/legislative stewards, the possibility that
humanity will somehow awaken and with near unanimous intent, rally and harness all of its ingenuity and effort to retool civilization toward a path of
sustainability that might tip the balance toward survival rather than
extinction, seems, at this point . . . unlikely.

The window is closing. The wakeup call is blaring. We even have a new war.

Earth’s environment, like any other natural system, will seek and ultimately
find a new balance. Which, if any, of the elements of this cycle will be
carried forward into the new, is completely unknowable.

Moral sentiment, notions of judgement . . . good / bad . . . right / wrong
seem misplaced. The issue is more one of success or failure, on an
evolutionary plane. Simple reduction : survival or extinction. Free – fall.

The lower world – as it was – as it could be: lush, alive, fertile, balanced. A
leonine, male figure holds a mask of man . . . passing a snake (symbol of
fertility, rebirth and renewal) through it.

The female figure, representing understanding, emotional maturity and
regeneration balances a diminished, grandstanding, little man on a clock. His
time is drawing to an end.

A bridge spanning the gulf between the worlds is . . . broken.


Joseph Carlisi – Biography     

Born and raised in New York City, he earned BA and MA degrees in Philosophy at Hunter College of the City University of New York and then continued his graduate studies in Philosophy and Artificial Intelligence at Massachusetts Institute of Technology working under the mentorship of Marvin Minsky. Joseph worked as a part time content and copy editor for Harvard University Press (science and medicine) while attending M.I.T.     

After ten years as a university lecturer, researcher and administrator, he started and managed an advertising / public relations firm in San Diego, CA that handled a wide range of commercial accounts. On the academic side, he published a series of seven articles on animal behavior for Harvard Magazine and two books: “A Guide to Personal Power” and most recently “Playing God on the Eve of Extinction”.

Joseph Carlisi creates oil on canvas paintings that can be described as vivid, surreal and unexpected. His paintings have been exhibited and sold in: Honolulu, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York City, Miami, Tokyo, Yokohama, Amsterdam, Berlin and Salvador Brazil.

Joe’s art is available for purchase.

Contact him at




Leave a Reply