Monday, August 29, 2005
Man, I really get a drag from trying to understand where people's minds are at.
Politics are a travesty. They probably always have been, it's just that it's getting worse now. Politics are, and always will be, a pimp's game. We drag ourselves through the mire of greed and such, only to come out greedy or lusty for the things that will never satisfy our souls.
"Gimme the beat boys and free my soul. I wanna get lost in your rock and roll, and drift away." -Dobie Gray
Spirituality sometimes isn't much better. When was the last time you heard anyone talk about soul, besides in the last quote? Not just a soul, but soulful thinking, soul music, soulmate, everlasting soul? What about for the tens of centuries when people said things like their soul ached or their soul was on fire?
I guess souls are lost things, though each one of us still has one. It's that slightest bit of breath or spirit that some never seem to connnect with. It's that wind or breeze that makes us different from the rest of the animated world.
The spirit of G_d is called, in Greek, Pneuma. Pneuma is wind, maybe better, breath. It's also a feminine noun. It blows where it will and touches even the most remote heart. She doesn't make me or change me. Not directly. Sometimes she just lets me see things that I too long have ignored and things that need to be changed.
She also whispers in my ear what I am doing right.
I think your spirit would be lifted by reading John Locke's "Two Treatises of Government."
You see, government is a contract between the governed and those who govern. Good Government is not the master of the People, but rather its servant.
In the Western/Free World, this system has by and large been proven to be a fruitful blessing: The People have the power to choose at the ballot box and to voice their remonstrations through a free and unfettered Press.
How fortunate are we in the United States to have enjoyed a peaceful transition from one president to the next since the inception of our great Republic! Count your blessings, Good Sir. And remember, the Eye in the Pyramid is watching you!
Sadly, in despotic nations, we have seen vile and despicable dictators and tyrants emerge to oppress the weak. Occasionally, this wickedness is able to be corrected and those tyrants' clay feet smashed: Tojo, Hitler, Capone, Saddam, et al.
I cannot argue with your aching thoughts of Spirituality. Yea, my own Soul cries out from the depths for justice and wholeness and oneness with the Oversoul.
YHWH in her infinite wisdom hath given us the Word, in which the metaphor of Abba/Father is very strongly rendered as the concept of G_d. And yet who can deny the Motherly implications of "the comforter," as Jesus referred to the Holy Spirit which was promised to be sent?
But, nay, this banter about G_d's gender or her substance or mode of contacting us mere mortals can lead to madness. Who's your daddy?
Verily, it causes me to wonder, Leo, if you perhaps are suffering from BUFFALO FART PNEUMA (breath) and have repulsed some of your nearby listeners, particularly those of the female persuasion? Ahh but I cannot speak, for I am a lonely man myself: no wife, no girlfriends, no inflatable doll.
My friend, it is time for us to make a trip to Mount Horeb, Thunder Mountain, Coronado Peak, Miller Peak, whatever -- for some fresh PNEUMA.
As always, bring your camera.
While I agree with much of Locke's theories of government, I find no solace in them. I find Locke a bit too romantic when it comes to the actual workings.
Rather, I prefer Federalist Papers ramblings. You see, while those guys, Madison, Jay, and Hamilton, were influenced some by Locke, they saw the pragmatic side of the issues that Locke necessarily avoided. I say necessarily, because he was still working on theory and the founding brers were at the stage of practice.
In Federalist #10, Madison writes at length on how to control factions. No ideological claptrap, straight to the nut. He basically said let factions say what they want, give them a place to say it and, generally, you can maintain control without coersion. Let everyone think they have a say and they'll go away happy. This worked ideally on the small scale in rural and post colonial America, mostly because the people were spread out too far. In less than 100 years, the whole thing came tumbling down and we engaged in the civil war. The influx of technology and the decay of the agrarian society brought peoiple into closer proximity. Hence, conflict couldn't be avoided.
No, we haven't always had peaceful transitions. By and large, that is true. But we've had our share of leaders being shot down. No bloody coups here, but we've brewed our own trouble in many a country, actually usurping those people's rights to free choice. Remember Allende in Chile? Elected by a huge majority in a free and peaceful election and we, through the CIA, had him dusted. What about Haiti, where similar things have happened since the days of Daddy Doc and the Tonton Macoute (whom we supported at the expense of free elections).
Many times I see politics and government as the Leviathan that Thomas Hobbes wrote about. A beast that exists, after a while, with or without the governed. Hence, since human beings can't be trusted to make rational decisions, the people should give their right to an omnipotent and benevolent leader. Of course, when taking that route, you border on facism and the mass psychological shifts that Wilhelm Reich wrote about after WWII.
In the end, we do the best we can and, hopefully, change for the better as we go on. Unfortunately, the lessons of history point to inevitable hegemonic decline which we Americans somehow refuse to acknowledge. It happened to everyone else but it can't happen to us because we're different.
Not that different.
There are seemingly only two constants and they are the laws of thermodynamics.
1. Nothing that is can be created or destroyed.
2. Everything is moving forward into decay.
Actually, those 2 laws make a really good case against evolution now that I think about it.
As for the spirituality stuff, the theory of Trinity points to familial relationships. Father, Mother, Son.
Your heightened sensititivies on the anomalies of modern strong-arm tactics of American global policies are duly noted. Sometimes Uncle Sam breaks the rules (e.g. ignores the "No Swimming" sign to go out to rescue a drowning man).
My analogy of the trinity is water:
Noah and baptism.
New Orleans flooding vs. San Pedro River's sustenance.
Destroyer and life-giver.
The standard training of water life saving says that a rescuing swimmer shall push away from a clawing, desperate person who is drowning, even if it means the first swimmer might ultimately perish. This is simple logic: better that one drown than two.
Often, drowning victims are brought in by rescuers after they have exhausted all their thrashings and are on the verge of unconsciousness, even minutes from brain death. That's where CPR comes in.
Good Samaritan action requires no flag nor nationality.
"All you need is love." -- Beatles
He rescued the injured man after he was robbed on the highway, and so the injured man was able to return to the highway another day.
That is in everybody's interest, including the Good Samaritan's. He also travels the highway and will appreciate the return favor and mutual protection. Allies.
Jesus himself said: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Love yourself? Sounds selfish! Gosh, we can't have mutual interests such as freedom and justice, can we?
Just because you didn't vote for the person who won the president's office, or maybe you didn't vote at all because of a defeatist apathy, or perhaps you did vote for Bush and you simply disagree with the policy, or maybe you're one of those whiners who can't stop crying "foul" even though Gore and Kerry both conceded and the rest of the world has moved on ...
... whatever your excuse, the war decision was made with the best available intelligence and intentions, and, yes, complex strategic interests -- including the assurance of open petroleum markets and the USA's "selfish" self-defense purposes.
And maybe, just maybe, the root of freedom and democracy can grow just a little in some Iraqi persons' minds and hearts, although perhaps you think those inferior Arabs are inherently unable to do this, and are unworthy of our support in that endeavor.
Here's a better web site than the porn link that was just posted on this thread:
Did that guy or gal get you riled or what? Personally, I have a hard time taking anyone seriously that chooses to be anonymous. That fred and wilma was a funky distraction though (I was expecting Hanna/Barberra funnies, not plumbing pics).
Jesus first said, "Love your God with all your heart and all your soul and all your mind." Then he said "Love your Neighbor as yourself." That is in the Old Testament and isnt anything new. Jesus just told the pharisee what the old testament said were the first two commandments.
Doesn't it figure that you would love yourself and love your neighbor in an unselfish way if you really loved your God first. How can you say that Jesus was suggesting something selfish. How short-sighted is your Christianity? Maybe you'd better read more. Or are you one of those new conservatives that think the gospels were written for them to re-interpret?
By the way, I'm not anonymous. I just can't log on as anyone. I'm not a blogger. My name is Mike and both you and that Leo really piss me off.
I guess Mike ain't the guy that posted the Fred and Wilma site???
America, love it or leave it? Is that it? It should be Fix it or forget it.
Why would you think I think Arabs are somehow inferior? The same could be said for a government that wages wars at the expense of other people's self-determination. Forcing our system of flawed government down their throats is the utmost of audacity and self-absorbed egoism that I can imagine. And where do you get this babble about self-defense? Are you so blind that you can't see that we were the offenders long before they reacted to us?
I'm tired of conservatives doubting anyone's patriotism because they don't agree with them. It's sickening. I spent two tours in 'nam and know the value of our life and country and I don't need some self-righteous flag waver telling me about defense and the virtues of democracy. Like the rest of the chicken hawks in Washington, that attitude makes me ill.
Like we learned in "A Few Good Men": It doesn't take a patch on your shoulder to make you a hero.
So, while we are impressed that you have fought in a war, I'm just reminding you that there are equally valid voices on this subject. And they -- along with Vietnam warriors, as well as veterans of other wars -- have elected Bush to the highest office of this country.
That's the reality, Mike. I'm sorry you don't approve of it. Maybe in your next life they'll make you Mike the King.
There are many that rule that creatively avoided armed conflict over the years and many of them are now the wagers of war. The one man to be admired in all this, the real warrior Colin Powell, is made obvious by his absence in Washington. No need to wonder why he's not there.
Bush may be around for a few more years and, believe it or not, I voted for him both times. Just because someone attains power doesn't mean he is above question or critticism. I consider myself a free thinker and I am tired of being told I am somehow remiss in my patriotism for being questioning.
I, myself, have a lot to say about just about everything and would probably just disagree for the sake of the argument. Frankly, I lose enough sleep without losing it over who's righteous and who's not. Besides, who am I to criticize?
It's not apathy on my part. Nope. Just plain resignation to the nature of man. I don't necessarily always like it but, again, who am I to judge?
My next post is for Mike, whoever you are.