Why are so many of us so self-fulfilled by vilifying the other? Or throwing stones at the institutions? Or the current generation? Or blame-centered snarkisms? Nothing is accomplished in that level of thinking. The world’s institutions didn’t create these problems. They do enable them and perpetuate them. But it isn’t the fault of the institutions themselves. They are a product of human power corruptions and misplaced values. Culture is what it is, because different power structures within an elite group of people change and adapt to whatever means of control enables their existence. The injustices corrected by revolutionary or prophetic movements become systematically circumvented by the authorities that adopt them. Stop blaming the Muslim or Islam or Christian or Evangelical or Semite or Black or Refugee or Terrorist or Abuser or Dependent! They are a product of a system of order that encourages their derogatory identifying characteristics and ignores their humanness. On the other end of the spectrum, passionately raising the up the value of the individual creates ever smaller circles of inclusiveness and in the absence of dedicated thinking and learning and experiencing encourages a lack of empathy for those who are different than us.
Let us not continue to see the world as either/or or a/b or us/them. To make a concession, does not mean that you have lost or that you even have to use those terms to discuss your position. In using those terms you have lost already or acquiesced to the idea of losing and adopted the idea that concession is failure and unnecessarily puts in fear of a losing position which doesn’t necessarily exist. Certainly it does not! It is empowering to acknowledge that someone else has a more sophisticated or enhanced idea, rule or system for our existence. The sooner we adapt and include those ideas (or whatever) into our own mission on this Earth the sooner we are stronger because of it. In fact, that is what the elite or command structure of our societies do to maintain their seat of power and influence. Within any society or prophetic mission, this elite group has used those new ideas to wreak havoc on the new world it created.
Concerning the idea of winning or losing, we should transcend those physical, temporal boundaries. Even to be on the winning side throughout history does not necessarily imply that you have won. Winning implies a grave responsibility. A responsibility that many apathetic young people have realized early on and rejected. The apathy of the young male or female is a deep concern of the present period. The burden of success dissuades many from trying. More on that another time. Indeed, the success of the Allied States was not entirely a victory. It was the loss of an entire generation of the male population in some states and an annihilated physical infrastructure and the creation of a war machine that exists to this day. The militarism of that period negatively affected the world for the entire period there after.
People have loved to romanticize the World Wars, just like they have loved to romanticize revolution. It’s the romanticism of fight and the fragile purity of the hero within our collective unconsciousness that feeds into the structures of power and dominance that pervades human thinking only to hold us down and weaken us. This, unfortunately, is encouraged by our social media driven culture which a creates information silos, in which, thinking that challenges our own is excluded from the body of information, with which, we allow ourselves to be presented. And the availability of information along with ubiquitous presence of a screen is not in and of itself the challenge as some might have you believe.
The challenge is that we have lost the ability to try to understand that the experiences of a group of people outside our own insular groupings may have thoughts or ideas we do not share, yet are still valid given their relationship with historical injustices. And yes, those groups of people may be easy to vilify. But a villain is most unnecessary and built out of a construct of dialectical thinking about championship and heroism.
Heroism, in the Disney sense, is unrealistic and unique to our saccharine celebration of ‘Thumbs Up’ culture. The disenfranchised are worthy of our sympathy and I think that the ancient people did have an advantage in their body of literature in recognizing the flaws of even their gods and demigods. Perhaps the elevation of a monotheistic, personal god responding to the needs of a chosen people is dangerous in that is perpetuates the us vs. them construct and systematically extols the virtues of inclusion and conformity rather than celebrating the synthetic beauty of harmonic disparity. On the other hand, the divisiveness of tribalism or paganism led people again to competition between groups. What should be our goal, then?
Empathy. True empathy must be available both ways along a two way street. It gives people the power to have emboldened lines of self-identification, yet intellectually reach beyond those limitations and emotionally and biologically understand the experiences of another person’s point of view. Continuing from there we can grow as a people and encourage every group to have a share in the abundance of riches pre-existing in our universe before we even came to be. But accepting this reality requires a different way of thinking about how we are to be living and sharing in the beauty of this world. We can not limit ourselves to abmonoculture and we must encourage ourselves be in love with ourselves and take pride in ourselves and all acknowledge another groups’ right to pride and self-value. Remove blame! Success in harmony and equanimity! Champion us all! Let us not acquiesce until the last blade of grass is redeemed.