The objective of all civilization is to return us to the garden but with safety. That is where we began and that is where we should aim to end on a higher plane, wiser and richer and more secure but essentially gardeners. The happy poor of the Third World know this, and part of the so-called charity of the First World is to make them forget it. The happy poor who have understood the secret live the lives of the super rich, beachcombing, living on yachts, having just enough for themselves and no more. If they could have surplus stashed away (because their way of life is actually so cheap) so that they could draw on it for medicare, or emergency relief, then their lifestyle would be perfect. The trick is to prevent the corporations and the powerbrokers from stealing the surplus. Because the corporations and the powerbrokers have got it wrong. They have misunderstood the nature of ‘security’, and the nature of ‘enough’. They don’t know the way to create the garden, only to make a desert wasteland which they are building around us. The technologies for the garden are within our reach, but they will never be developed, or they will be developed and perverted, if the apocalypse does not wipe away the corrupt order. Therefore there must be an apocalypse, if not in fact (though that is always an option with our talent for self-destruction, through omission or commission) then in the head. This is essentially what my book Antisense is about. In it, the Apocalypse actually happens, more spectacularly than any Hollywood big budget movie. But the story is not about the apocalypse. It’s about what happens afterwards, five-six hundred years, and how (in minute detail) the garden is recreated, and how it is not complete without a serpent, but a serpent who is our friend and our companion, whose job it is to slough skins, not to poison apples (that’s what the non-gardeners do). Let’s stop poisoning the bloody apples and slough some skins.