Skip to main content

Explain the mess we are in and means by which we might escape it

George Monbiot expressed it so well.


Is it reasonable to hope for a better world? Study the cruelty and indifference of governments, the disarray of opposition parties, the apparently inexorable slide towards climate breakdown, the renewed threat of nuclear war, and the answer appears to be no. Our problems look intractable, our leaders dangerous, while voters are cowed and baffled. Despair looks like the only rational response.

The mess is the outcome of a long social and political fantasy - that dictates man must be in control of nature. This false assertion has disabled his ability to reflect on his relationship to the world. He cannot allow himself the vulnerability of feelings beyond the will to power. 

Every decade he invents more gadgets, weapons, and things to believe in, to possess, to give his life meaning, and every decade he creates new problems, new crises, wars, inequality, prisons, punishments and propaganda - to avoid the realization that he is not in control.

This torture has created the normalization of a mental illness, a game of elevating the self, competing with others for a fleeting sense of power. It demands that everyone exhibit the same values, the same mental illness, the same obsessions.

They are measured in new ages, new conceits and fashions - but ultimately it is about bringing an end to life - because life cannot submit to the game.  Life does not worship power over itself, unless man kills everything that refuses to submit to his will. 

The fantasy is that the eternal ruler will be the one who destroys everything else, including his own life.  The fantasy is that the narrative will be written in the barren rocks, fields and oceans.

It began with patriarchy, when men had to prove they were superior to women by overcoming their senses, by replacing their flesh with armour. Then having to keep those muscles in place by "discovering" other places, building temples, boats and doctrines. The mind had to be fought, wrestled into submission too. 

Masculinity removes man from nature, from the land, to that Zulu sentence-word that means "over there where I cry mother I am lost." Man must be broken in, taken from the protection of a loving family, from the comfort of his own nature to be the robotic soldier, the king, the executioner. 

Giving birth, love, nurture, compassion, healing, reflecting - all are dismissed as feminine, sissy, and wimpish. Death is for glory and life is for wimps.

The mess we are in is the breakdown of our own nervous system, our own eyes, our own hearts. The hatred we are asked to express is the contempt for our selves projected onto the other.

The way to escape this mess is by loving ourselves and through compassion for the suffering of others.



Comments

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Letter to BC Ferries

I am a resident of Gabriola and often travel Taylor Bay Road to get to the village.

I have noticed the line up takes cars onto the road where there are bends. Because some of the cars are part way on to the road I must pass on the oncoming traffic lane. This is dangerous because oncoming traffic cannot see me. I move as close as possible to the cars in the line up but still go to the oncoming traffic lane.


It appears that we need more frequent ferries to avoid this long line up. When catching a ferry I get in line as the previous ferry is leaving, which is possible for retired people, but not everyone can do this.

Overburdened line ups also cause some to get too frustrated and do dangerous things. We are all responsible for our own behaviour but so much of our civil society is being destroyed by ruthless economic ideologies.

Climate change, abusive treatment of workers and the economic trend which intentionally pushes people to a deep sense of insecurity, calls for a renewal in comm…

The Truth As the Body Knows It by Lynda Archer

I know the news moves on quickly, but I am still back, as I expect some of you are also, with what occurred in the US Supreme Court a few days ago. I am sharing with you all an essay that I couldn't not write after Dr. Blasey Ford's testimony. Trigger warning for some of what I write. Feel free to share with whomever you wish. And thanks to those who have read earlier versions. You know who you are. 

Continuing from Dr. Blasey Ford’s Testimony, the Truths I Know 

I watched closely the Supreme Court events in the US and found myself becoming increasingly sad, angry and churned up with the process and the ultimate outcome. Spoiler alert. Yes, I clearly side with Dr. Ford and I will over the course of this essay endeavour to show you why. 

I am not myself a survivor of sexual assault or abuse. But at this historic moment I am reminded of all the brave women who I was honoured to treat in my capacity as a clinical psychologist and Assistant Clinical Professor within the Dept. of Psyc…

Anonymous Sources

Where does "Greatness" come from? The imagination? Facts? Confidence? A willing suspension of disbelief in a slogan that makes us happy? A capacity to judge well? An ability to observe and find solutions that benefit most if not all? Taking responsibility for the community? A masters degree from Oxford or Yale?

Let me offer the opinion that greatness comes from extraordinary effort or talent.  Greatness as it may exist in our anonymous ambitions does not win fame except in isolated circumstances.  That is to say, fame is not a realistic goal for an individual.

Greatness is like a dove in the imagination, an angel, a temporary insight, a fleeting epiphany. Something aspired to in the privacy of our minds.

Greatness was an ambition I held when I was a teen and had no proof that I was good at anything or useful to the world at all. After repeated criticism and dismissal from the community around me where I attempted to win something, anything, like a medal, a competition, or a…