I think it’s an interesting question whether adaptation to climate breakdown must include survival. It is commonplace for humans to give up their lives in service to something greater: soldiers in war, martyrs in religion, activists in civil disobedience or revolution. Perhaps there is something greater than human survival that we are now called to serve! What could you call it? “Compassionate living?” “Planetary justice?” “Right relations with the Earth?” One need not imagine fighting to preserve one’s life. One may imagine laying it down in a good way.
What if survival is not the point, either for individuals or for the species? What if all of human history is an object lesson in the consequences of hubris, greed, and cruelty? What if, in order to bring the planetary system into balance, it is necessary that humans suffer, die, and disappear? Would we not, then, welcome the end? Would we not cheer the application of cosmic justice? Would we not consider the pain our just due, and be grateful for it? Would we not enter joyfully into that redemption?