Book Of Hope : A Survival Guide For Trying Times by Jane Goodall and Douglas Abrams

Book Of Hope : A Survival Guide For Trying Times by Jane Goodall and Douglas Abrams


In a world filled with countless challenges, how can we hold onto hope? When we glance at the news headlines – the escalating climate crisis, a global pandemic, a decline in biodiversity, political upheaval – it’s difficult to maintain a sense of optimism. Yet, hope is now more vital than ever. The Book of Hope, an urgent publication, delves into one of the most sought-after and least understood aspects of human nature through an intimate and thought-provoking conversation between Jane Goodall, the world’s most renowned living naturalist, and Douglas Abrams, the internationally acclaimed co-author of The Book of Joy.

The book primarily revolves around Jane’s “Four Reasons for Hope”: The Incredible Human Intelligence, The Resilience of Nature, The Power of Younger Generations, and The Indomitable Human Spirit. Reflecting on decades of impactful work that has broadened our comprehension of human existence and the actions required to shape a better world, The Book of Hope tackles crucial questions, such as how to maintain hope amidst hopelessness, how to instill hope in our children, and the deep connection between hope and action.

Bringing together memorable stories and captivating photographs from Jane’s extraordinary career, The Book of Hope presents an intimate dialogue with one of the most beloved figures of our time. While recounting the experiences that molded her discoveries and convictions, Jane shares the tale of how she became a messenger of hope – from enduring the travails of World War II to her years in Gombe, and ultimately realizing her purpose of traversing the globe as an advocate for environmental justice. In a groundbreaking revelation, Jane also unveils her profound insights about her forthcoming, and possibly final, venture.

The Book of Hope is the second installment in the Global Icons Series, following the remarkable success of The Book of Joy with His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. This profound work offers a rare glimpse not only into the nature of hope, but also into the heart and mind of a woman who transformed our perception of the world and dedicated her life to safeguarding our future. Despite the challenges, hope persists, and this book will serve as a guiding light on our journey towards it.

The Book of Hope: Finding Strength and Purpose in Trying Times

Dear friends, it’s my great pleasure today to speak to Douglas Abrams, co-author of the amazing book “The Book of Hope” with Jane Goodall. First of all, congratulations! Thank you so much, Deepak. Great to be with you. I’ve been going through the book and really enjoying it. I’ve known Jane since I first met her at the State of the World Forum with Gorbachev like 30 years ago or something. So tell me about this project, how did it come about?

Well, first of all, I am a poor substitute for Jane herself. But it’s a delight to be with you and to represent the book. We have a global icon series that you may know about. So the first book in the series was “The Book of Joy” with the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. So when we were thinking about who to profile next in the series and have a conversation with, we chose Jane. The books in the series are kind of dialogue travelogues. They take the reader on an adventure to meet extraordinary icons in the world and dive deep into a subject of profound importance. In this case, hope. Little did we know how much the world was going to need hope when we began two years ago. I approached Jane, she said she wanted to do the book, and she invited us to come to Tanzania and meet with her. We packed our bags and traveled to Dar es Salaam to have a fantastic conversation with her.

Well, let me say, this was a very personal journey as well as an intellectual journey because my dad died while I was working on the book. It went from being an intellectual topic to everything as we were waiting on his diagnosis. And ultimately, hope is a character aspect of our human nature that is fundamental to our survival. One of the hope researchers we looked at said that we are hope-fear creatures, responding from either our fear brain or our hope brain. Hope is actually a grounded way of relating to the future, anticipating obstacles and strategizing and planning. So, there is always hope until we’re gone, either dead or the species is extinct. Hope is not real without action and it needs goals, realistic pathways, a sense of agency, and social support. We need to find that middle ground between denial and despair, an active, creative, and practical response to the challenges of the day.

One thing that is for sure is that if we don’t have hope, there really is no hope. We have to be the change we want to see in the world. Peace can only be created by those who are peaceful. Love can only be shared by those who have experienced love. The book takes us on an extraordinary journey towards hope, exploring topics such as the resilience of nature, the power of young people, the indomitable human spirit, and becoming a messenger of hope. And, interestingly, we also discuss death and the continuity of consciousness after death. Jane sees death as her next great adventure, ready to take notes and send them back to all of us.

So, as I listen to you and read about near-death experiences, I, too, see death as the next chapter in my life. The physical world is not real, it’s a changing experience in awareness. Life is the continuum of birth and death, and there is enormous peace in understanding that. Thank you, Doug, for this conversation and for companioning my dad on his journey to death. Let’s continue to create a more hopeful world.

Thank you, Deepak. It’s been a pleasure.

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