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Friday, October 26, 2012


I’d Rather Not…..But...

In review, for most of my life, I was happiest when I was able to Simply Read and Think.
My Mom realized , early on, that to send me to my room was no punishment, at all.
I was perfectly happy  to be so sequestered.
I was Self Directed…by Abiding Curiosity; helped immensely by the presence of the Deluxe Set of Encyclopedias. As I’ve said many times, I would wander for days…and learned to maintain that Wandering, simultaneously, with whatever I was “Supposed” to be doing.(like School)
Only MRL understood this…and even he Wandered a lot less, and tended towards Approved Subjects.
I’d go, rather, wherever the “Spirit Moved Me’…in my case, the Spirit of my Curiosity.
I chaffed at being Forced to Think about something that did not Interest me(algebra)…I’d get to it when/if I thought it was Important.
My Natural Disposition is to Sit and Think.(not conducive to Wealth-Accumulation)
It’s an almost lifelong Joke, that I consider Aristotle/Gibbons/Kant or whatever as “Light Reading”.
Given this tendency, Politics was always a somewhat superficial consideration, until it intruded into my life in such a way that I could not ignore it.
Not 9-11, itself….but our Society’s Reaction to it, was the Gun to my Head…Forcing me to consider such messy inanities.
I’d never really considered the motives and understanding of Others.
It had never been all that important to me….save in learning to avoid cops and rednecks and other Mundane Threats.
A few years before that day, I had become aware of a lack of Understanding, on my part, of Economics…so I had been studying that…and finding so many Contradictions and Mythology surrounding it, that I despaired at ever grasping the subject, as it applied to the Real World. The Libertarian Argument(Austrian School) sounded good to me…until I went deeper, and tried to actually Apply the concepts. The Ass, parading as if he were a King!
Free Market?
A Utopian Fantasy!
Similarly, with Politics…I thought that I knew up from down, using the Assumptions imparted by Dr Bob, and the General Milieu I grew up in. None of it was Applicable, after all….but (and here’s the startling Rub!)….we were expected to ignore this fact.
I perceived my Ignorance of the Motives and Thinking behind our rapid, kneejerk to the Right.
So , I studied.
Again, I feel/felt that I was forced into this undertaking…I  detected an Existential Threat, in the Actions of my Government, and in the Actions and Pronouncements of my Neighbors…far and near.
This Endeavor has consumed me.
I had blithely Assumed that We, as a Species, were somehow beyond having to worry about Fascism,  and the like.
Yet, here were it’s Ingredients.
I was compelled to Understand, not only How…but Why.
Why would so many folks, who appeared Rational on the surface, fall into such an obvious Trap?
How could so many be Duped?
Back to Psychology, Mythology, Belief…and the concomitant Methodology of Controlling these; from Propaganda, to Us/Them, to the Manipulation of Our Beliefs about the World….and , behind all of this “How”…was the Why!
Why would a Group(in this case, Neocons) want to do these things?
Enter Deep Politics, and an understanding of the Real World, as opposed to the Puppet Show.
I was Shocked to learn that the Surreality had been ongoing for at least 60 years…and more Haphazardly, for well over 5000!
What Hubris! What Audacity! That, for 35 years, the forces of Darkness had been so manipulating Reality, that the fruits could no longer be trusted…our assumptions, about almost Anything , were suspect!
The Neocons, of course, were/are a mere Faction…a subset of something else.
Call it the Universal State, the Matrix(in our current, secular mythology)…I have labeled it The Machine.
But I glean that it is more than the sum of it’s parts.
It’s not, merely, the agglomeration of Extremely Wealthy Families…nor of Corporate Boardrooms…nor of the Proverbial “Powers that Be”, sitting in their Study, pontificating on  How to Shape things to their benefit.
It is, of course, all of these things…but I detect something more.
Not anything as silly as “Evil”, though it certainly is that…from a certain point of view.
It’s Automatic….and as old as Humanity.
Call it the Authoritarian Hierarchical Tendency…opposed to the Egalitarian, libertarian(small l  ).
It’s an unconscious Drive, that seems to be encoded in our DNA.
Not Counter-Enlightenment, so much as Anti-Enlightenment.(Tao)
(and, I must stress; no Gods, or Devils are necessary)
The “goal”, the “purpose” of Enlightenment(not just the singular historical period)…inasmuch as there is a goal/purpose, is to Oppose this Tendency.
It is the same struggle that has been ongoing for all of Human History.
Look at the Broad Sweep of that History, and you find, after sufficient Boiling, two Opposing Trends…
the one, Expanding Understanding, Freedom of inquiry in it’s service, and the provision of the Benefits to more and more Humans.
The other, pulling us backwards.
There’s my “Left and Right”, respectively.
The Right has little awareness of this…those who serve that Trend(R) seem to believe that they are, sometimes , serving the Other trend(L)…but, mostly, believe that their actions are  simply Necessary.
They are not Evil, per se…at least not in their own Understanding. Their Reasons for their actions are Self-Evident, to them…derived from certain Assumptions that they seem to be unaware of, as such.
The Right  automatically pursue a Static, Utopia…often thought of as some past Golden Age..and an End Goal.
The Left, also, usually seem to have a Goal in mind, in their own pursuit.
But there is no Goal.
There’s no End State towards which Progress, in it’s most esoteric sense, is driving us.
It’s, at the risk of cliché, the Journey  that counts…Progress, itself….and not “progress” in it’s usual , mundane sense. The  Left, rather…and in it’s Roots…strives for that Expansion.
 Expansion of Consciousness, of Understanding, and of Freedom, broadly conceived.
We are, currently, at a relative Nadir in this Perpetual Struggle.
….and it appears quite Hopeless, sometimes.In fact, things will probably get a lot Worse, before We Remember…before We Realise Our Predicament, and Sally Forth, once again.
This is what Politics is all about…this Struggle.
And, behind Politics, is Philosophy….also at a Nadir.
Our Task, if one can think of it in such Mundane terms…is to Guard the Spark of Enlightenment…keep it Safe, while the Rest flail about in Confusion…so that, when Humans are ready, it will still be there.
It is not inconceivable…in fact, it appears quite Likely…that We will descend further, into a full fledged Dark Age. The Civilisation that we have, however inadvertently, Designed relies, implicitly on certain Assumptions…certain Preconditions. Built into the Engine of Civilisation is , of course, Growth.
This will, necessarily, Cease in the near future. Finite Planet, and all.
I expect a long, slow Decline in Population, punctuated by various and sundry short sharp shocks…whether Natural(Tsunami,Pandemic) or Human Created(War,Pandemic(!),Totalitarianism)…the latter, justified by Sane Sounding Reason…subject to Unexamined Assumptions, and the concurrent Belief that We Know what we are doing..
Could be a thousand years, ere we climb out of the Mud, again.
And even that is no guarantee.
I’m coming around, in the current Election Season, to an understanding that I can’t really Change the Direction .
The Course of Civilisation will go where it will, despite my action, or inaction.
All I can Hope for, is to help keep the Horn that holds the Spark(Quest for Fire!), relatively Safe…
and encourage Others to do the same.
The Tree is not the End to which we strive, but the Acorn.(Potentiality)


It is not yet time to Retreat into the Monastery.
Magic is Intent, Manifested.
A system of Focusing Our Intention…forget for a moment the connotations of the word,”magic”.
I have said and implied , repeatedly, that , even given a Decline…How We Enter that decline Matters.
I’ll Vote, despite the likely Uselessness of that Act(Texas)…because such Acts of Deliberate Intention Resonate, out into the World…at least that part of it that is Human Consciousness.
Ripples on a Pond.

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