Because the power of rulers is mostly about control and intimidation, the world for them is not a place of texture and diversity. Everything must be managed and dominated. Even those who instill systems of justice live under the constant threat of being dethroned. The rulers who stay in power longer, it seems, are those who have behind them the military, the media, other superpowers, and the determination to do whatever they must to stay in power, including killing their citizens.
War may appear to be about land and resources, but is, if we look deeper, about something else. It is about controlling the imagination and creativity of human nature. It is about ideologies that keep people in fear and doubt about their own power. There must be war to interrupt the capacity for people to organize and gain knowledge. Hatred and fear of femininity, of homosexuality, of the poor, of social justice, is inflamed in order to keep us suspicious of our nature - the means to be fully engaged humans.
The war is against humanity, the environment, and nature. The war is against the future, against hope, against love and compassion, and against the capacity we all possess to change our world.
If we fail to find the integrity to create justice in our communities, to fight injustice, then we shall feel Orwell's 1984, and Atwood's Oryx and Crake, very intimately. We shall live in the trenches of WWI, in Sarajevo, in Syria and all the other places of siege.
Integrity is not a political party or a club. It requires our conscience to question our representatives, those given positional power, our community, our church, and our selves. It requires mindfulness, diligence, and most of all - insight.
There are no instructions on how to lead a life of integrity. Our friends and family will not applaud. The subject won't be made into a Hollywood blockbuster. There will be no Nobel prizes for those who build the world for the good of all. (Nobel winners such as the Dalai Lama and Nelson Mandela are two who have been recognized but most of the integral work is done by millions who are never recognized.) It will go unnoticed by mass media - in fact, blacked out, just as any sign of civil engagement is intentionally censored there. All we have is our determination to seek and act upon truth, to do what we believe is right, and to live in love and compassion.
However, if this age of integrity doesn't come to pass in thought and action, life will not be worth living.
I think the most important thing to remember though - is that the terror and destruction our world has endured is not accidental. It is not simply through ignorance and the failure of humanity to live in peace. It is the strategy of abusive power to keep the masses powerless through chaos and violence.
The point is not to kill those who have power but to replace their power with our own power - that which loves our grand-children, and is integral to the survival of life on this planet.