What interests me in this world though is the powerful symbolism and the philosophical, spiritual meaning:
We're grounded. Literally. Figuratively.
We have the next few hundred years to sort out our problems of being an unsustainable civilization without orbital umbrellas, just by _being better_. This can breed a new, powerful social movement, with a huge and grim reminder visible every day: the skies beyond are not for us. Not for the next few generations.
I think such a world has a huge potential for #solarpunk optimism: the universality of the belief that we need to be better. Getting us out of our stagnation.
No more Muskian dreams of Mars, our hopes for Space shattered for half a millenium at least. No asteroid mining.
We need to do better with what we have.
We are grounded, but we are alive and we can fix our mistakes.
I have a collection of realistic story ideas ( https://alxd.org/22-solarpunk-communities-and-story-hooks.html ), but I think there is a lot to be explored in how Big Events and their effect on societies.
An event like this could change a lot by showing people that we can think differently, the same way Covid showed us we don't need to be only about work and infinite growth.
@lakoja I think there's a lot of space for exploration in this.
There's a point why it's so hard to imagine a better future, a world where we deal with Big Problems: we tend to default to apocalypses.
Instead, we could explore: what if we take a traumatic societal event and treat it as a lesson?
If we have this research done, stories ready in the popular culture, the next time something like this happens, more people can start thinking like this, without fatalism and giving up.
A small, intentional community for poets, authors, and every kind of writer.