For the last few days I have been considering starting another blog, This is because I have felt the need to rant about major political issues. And in these rants, I feared that I would be wandering very far from the “spiritual”. The use of inverted commas is deliberate, simply because I cannot differentiate between spiritual and secular realms. When people are starving, or dying through preventable disease or when armies kill, rape, torture and loot their way through terrorised populations, then it is impossible for me to differentiate between the secular and the sacred. Maybe this is a fault. Certainly I have been told so many times that I should not focus on the negatives but should look at flowers and birds. For it is there where Goddess is,
And they are right. It is, partly through contact with flowers and birds that I have stayed alive to the age of 61 and not succumbed to despair. Even more importantly however, there are those who have loved me, far more than my deserving. They know who they are – as I do – and I cannot name them here. But, however, I am aware that my survival thus far is not solely the result of my actions or virtues but has chiefly depended on the deep love and support that I have received. And was often incapable of returning in the unconditional way it was given.
And the uncomfortable truth is that some of those who offered that love in the past are now dead. And their deaths are directly due to the actions and decisions of others who decided to declare an absurd and unwinnable war on drugs. So, can I withdraw into some pink fluffy la-la land with the reassurance that their deaths are their own responsibility and part of their karmic journey and those people who made the decisions that led to the circumstances in which they died bear no responsibility? I am responsible for the consequences of my own decisions only insofar as I am conscious that I have any choice. As a member of a global elite - a western educated, middle class male – I have considerably more free will than the huge bulk of the population of the planet. To that extent, I bear considerably more responsibility for the way my life has developed – for good or ill – than they do.
What responsibility, however, does the orphaned African child who has inherited her mother’s HIV bear? Or the parents in Georgia over the last few days who have tried to shelter their children from Russian bombs? Or Iraqis? Afghans? Or the people of New Orleans who waited for basic food and water for well over a week in the superdome in a major city in the most powerful and richest nation on the planet? How do they bear responsibility for their plight? The short answer is, they don’t. The hell they inhabit has been inflicted by others in pursuit of the extension of their power and wealth.
I have often been accused of being too angry. I do not know how it is possible not to feel anger at what happens in the world. Anger is the only appropriate response, I would have thought. Human beings are beautiful and sacred and the planet that we inhabit is wonderful and sacred. That is the basis of my belief. All that is, is Goddess. And yet, we are divided and out of harmony and are thus – as a species – pathologically destructive. This state of mind is called, for want of a better word, patriarchy. How, why and when this disease was born, I am not qualified to say although I have a few ideas. This does not matter, however. It is like spending time with a patient with lung cancer trying to determine whether it was through her smoking as a younger woman, her partner’s smoking, car exhausts, faulty genes, some unidentified virus or plain bad luck. In the end, the patient will die unless some intervention is made fairly quickly.
What we are seeing in the world today is the progress of a potentially fatal disease the major symptom of which is that entire categories of human beings are considered dispensable. It is also a world in which, overwhelmingly, divinity is envisioned as male. Absurdly, the birthing of the universe is seen as the function of a male in some sort of cosmic and narcissistic masturbation. The very notion is fundamentally insane. It is therefore unsurprising that the systems of thought that it has spawned are equally insane.
And I do not believe that any are immune from this insanity. Patriarchal thinking has infected all discourse. Any healing however, will not come from some New Age wishful thinking but from a realisation that perhaps the patriarch resides within us all and manifests each time we presume to know what is right for another.