June 27, 2017

When Technology Fails and When Disaster Strikes

A quick note before today’s article:  There is still time to enter the contest to win one of the 11 gifts I highlighted in Twenty Great Gifts for Prepper’s. To do so, just sign up to receive updates on the left hand side of the blog and reply to any of the emails received, alerting you to a new update from Prepared Christian.  You have until Monday Morning, December 17th, to enter.  I will be picking random winners and notifying them so that they can send me their mailing address.  I will have the items sent directly from Amazon to your home.


When Technology Fails and When Disaster Strikes

One of the seminars I went to during last year’s MSTEP (Minnesota Symposium on Terrorism and Emergency Preparedness) featured Mat Stein.  Mat is a graduate of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he majored in Mechanical Engineering and is a best-selling author of two books called When Technology Fails and When Disaster Strikes.  Being the prepper nerd that I am, I had to see the talk Mat gave.  He opened with a similar version of the below, which is taken from the “about” page on his website Twenty Great Gifts for Prepper’s.

“It was a true epiphany that started Mat firmly on the path of self-reliance, emergency prep, and sustainability. Around Thanksgiving of 1997, during his morning session of prayer and meditation, in answer to a simple request for “guidance and inspiration”, Mat received a fully developed “story board” type of pictorial outline that popped into his head instantaneously. It was the outline for a massive handbook to help people be more self-reliant, live more sustainably, and prepare to weather the coming storms as we pass through this age of uncertainty and change. After three years of work, this “cosmic download” crystallized into his first book, When Technology Fails.”

Mat covered a wide variety of topics, many that I was already familiar with, some were brand new to me.  He spoke about things you might expect, such as threats we may face and why we should prepare, but went on to cover some things like using colloidal silver, tea tree oil and other natural methods.  This was actually the first time I had someone really explain colloidal silver, giving the history of it and an explanation on how to make your own colloidal silver generator.  He explains this in detail in the book When Technology Fails.

After the seminar, I waited in line to purchase both books and got a chance to chat with Mat for a few minutes.  I have since read some of his other writings and I listen to him on The Survival Podcast episodes Episode-795 and Episode-837.


Now Onto the Book Review

When Technology Fails

The first book Mat wrote was When Technology Fails.  It covers a wide variety of information. Keep in mind that it is written to be of use When Technology Fails.

Just a few of the areas he covers are: reasons for preparing, supplies one might need, water, food, shelter, as well as a large section on alternative holistic medicine.  He also covers topics such as metalworking, energy, and not-so-modern chemistry.  Some of those were the titles of the chapters, but the table of contents is five pages long.  In each of those areas he goes into detail on several different aspects of them.

As an example, the chapter “When High-Tech Medicine Fails” is 50 pages long.  It covers many different aspects of alternative healing, one being colloidal silver.  Mat explains many uses for colloidal silver, discusses his personal experience with it, and then explains how you can make your own colloidal silver generator, complete with a drawn diagram.


When Disaster Strikes

Mat’s second book When Disaster Strikes is broken up into three sections;

  1. General Preparations
  2. Emergency Medicine, Survival Skills and Tools
  3. Specific Disasters and Crisis

The second book doesn’t have as much detail on the first two areas, but I think it goes into more detail on what the actual disasters will look like, explaining what to expect, what you can do before, during and after.


Final Thoughts

I have to admit that I have not read either of the books from cover to cover, but thumbed through them reading things that interested me.   There are a few books that I think belong on every Prepper’s bookshelf, these two are among them.  There is some overlap between the two, When Technology Fails has more technical data in it, and covers much that When Disaster Strikes does not.  However, When Disaster Strikes is updated and, as I mentioned, goes into more detail on the disasters themselves.  If you’re only going to buy one, I suggest When Technology Fails, because of the vast amount of information it contains.

There are Kindle versions available, but this is the kind of book you want around if the grid goes down so that you can reference all of the information.  This isn’t to say I think the book should collect dust until then.  It is a fantastic resource to use in planning your preparations.

I highly recommend these books.  I give When Technology Fails five stars and When Disaster Strikes four stars.  The difference between the two is the HUGE amount of information in When Technology Fails.


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  1. Thanks for the info on these books. I have signed up hoping to win them but if not, I will have to go ahead and get them. I am in the process of trying to get some of my information I may need on hard copies to have in case they are needed.

  2. Margaret Kiemele says:

    Thank you Chris.
    Preparing for meds and toiletries is so important. Would you please give a link or talk about the use of herbal teas – and what benefits they have?
    I am also reading about fish Mox. I haven’t checked to see if that is available in Canada. It is all about learning to think “outside the box!” Our dependency on electricity, pharmacies and stores – has left us too vulnerable. When we watch TV programs about the suffering of people living in garbage dumps or desolate areas –
    even our emergency supplies are way beyond what they have!

  3. Was talking today about the impact Obamacare is going to have on those of us who are older. I mentioned the need to learn about herbal medicines and alternative ways of staying and getting healthy. I am so glad more people are sharing information about dealing with the “possibilities.” However, I am excited about learning them for the NOW as I am very concerned about side affects of some of the meds we have come to depend on.

    • I agree with you. I don’t see preparedness as only getting ready for what may come, I see it as a lifestyle. I make decisions to improve my life situation now, and build redundancy for what may come.

  4. I thought I would share this article since it deals with an all natural approach to health through diet. In this article they are dealing with the effect of this diet on cancer but this happens to be the way God taught me to eat after becoming a Christian. I lost 60 lbs, went off high blood pressure medicine, stop suffering from fibromyalgia and got rid of 90% of the migraine headaches that I was plagued with. Rule of thumb, if God made it to eat it’s good, if man made it it’s bad. I’m probably preaching to the choir here but of course it is preferable to be in the best possible health to begin with.

    • I apologize and should clarify—this is diet is very similar to the way I began to eat which prompted all the positive changes in my health. My diet included healthy carbs like sweet potatoes, it was not entirely carb free.

    • I quickly looked over the diet and I think that it is a better way to eat, no preservatives, additives and a lot less carbs. Since I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, I have been eating a healthier diet, but I need to do better still. I was recently told I have a gluten intolerance, and neet to get away from all gluten. You would not believe the amount of things that contain gluten in them.

  5. Good books I don’t own yet. Thanks. They get put on my list.
    I’m a believer in colloidal silver. I make my own and use it a lot (and I haven’t turned blue yet). It’s good internally as well as topically. My generator can be used in a 12 volt scenario too and I have solar backup system to make sure I can generate CS after collapse as well as extra silver stocked for years of making my own.

    • Good to know you’ve had success with colloidal silver, I’ve looked into making my own generator, I just need to order the parts.

      • Two secrets I’ve found that improves the final product and the time it takes to get it;

        1. Save a little of one batch to start the next. Just an ounce in a pint jar make a lot of difference in the time it starts to making good product.

        2. Filter you product through natural coffee filters to remove any large particles and ensure a consistent size in your final product. I just use a large plastic strainer and put the natural coffee filter in that, run it through then bottle it before I refrigerate it.

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