Posted by: Millard J. Melnyk | May 23, 2015

Get In It — But It’s Not a Game

Giving our governmental and corporate leaders a big fail might seem like going too far.

Giving our governmental system and our economic system huge fails might seem like going way too far.

But what if the leaders had no intention of passing and didn’t intend their systems to pass? Failing those who have no interest in complying, let alone complying successfully, misses the more important point: they have no regard for the rules and don’t care about the outcome. When they disregard the very rules that they created as if to be binding on all of us, it’s even worse.

But this is worse than that.

When rules aren’t designed to be followed — not by the rule-makers, anyway — but rather to blind the rest of us to the rule-makers’ true agenda while we busily, desperately, futilely struggle to comply, then for them, failing is the whole point.

If they truly wanted progress, prosperity, justice, and freedom for all, then why after all this time don’t we already have much more than we do? Why do we have to grind and scrap and cry and protest at all to get what we should have as natural rights, and why do the rulers and rule-makers fight us even over what little we achieve? Why instead don’t they throw in with us? Why aren’t we all already free and thriving — not just them?

Their answer is the answer of the abuser, the oppressor, and the tyrant: ignoring their resistance to our welfare and their agenda at our expense, they claim that it’s our fault. We are too lazy, shiftless, degenerate, ignorant, unmotivated, self-disrespecting, weak, unruly — the list of elitist meritocratic epithets is endless. Right. We don’t have what it takes and we aren’t willing to do what it takes — unlike like them.

They rob us and rape us because, supposedly, “we’re asking for it” and “we have it coming” and because they can and because we let them get away with it. If we truly deserved better, they think but rarely say, we wouldn’t put up with it. Our acquiescence shows that we know things are as they should be. Otherwise, we’d prove it by stopping them. And in part that’s true. Our history shows that we don’t believe that we deserve better — not enough to stop acquiescing.

Meanwhile, they don’t lack any of the things that they deny us by enforcing “law and order” for “the greater good.” In terms of material wealth, they are kings; but in human terms of personal connection, appreciation, compassion, empathy, friendship, and love for our fellows, they are stark raving paupers and fools.

The revolution isn’t a matter of fighting with idiots over the crap they misconstrue as “wealth”. It won’t be particularly bloody. It’s already happening, but quietly, because real revolution happens in the mind long before it’s expressed in action, and its actions don’t fit the mold foisted on us by the ruling heartless fools who don’t know what’s going on until they hear or see tangible evidence of it. Real revolution is an estrangement, a walking away, a forsaking in heart first, then in mind, and finally in body and will — not because we hate those blinded by power lust and not because we forcibly exclude them, but because where we’re going they have no way to follow. Deaf, dumb, and blind, they stand bewildered and debilitated in the dominion of heart, where love and desire and appreciation rule instead of scowls, fists, and iron. To the blind it’s a black hole abyss and we are as those who leap into dark doom.

Insensate, they know nothing.

Jesus warned, amazed, that if the light in us is darkness, how great the darkness will be! What was he referring to?

//Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in the sky, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.// Matthew 6:19-21

I lived most of my life in “bedroom communities”. I now live in White Center, known in Seattle as “the WC” or “DubSea” and also “the ‘hood”. I’ve also lived in the poor outskirts of a small Mexican town. I’ve been a ditch-digger, a high-tech expert, a management consultant, and a welfare recipient. I’ve worked alongside construction grunts and corporate hotshots. I can tell you that fearing moth, rust, and thieves is a quintessential concern of the wealthy, hardly so of the poor. The poor perforce learn that the sky-resident, the intangible, the “heavenly” — love, music, dreams, joy, devotion, solidarity, friendship, hope, and above all persons — are the real treasures, and that these imbue meaning into the physical world and the bodies that hold them. Having seen both sides of the wealth coin, I also say: Blessed are the poor who give riches of the heart utmost priority. I think that’s what Jesus was after, too.

Love knows no bounds, no chains, no walls, no cell bars. Union of heart transcends distance and time and wafts unchecked through opposition and out of containment. Devotion binds across impassable chasms. Physical violence not only can’t touch what ultimately matters, it proves our case: We of the heart are the righteous, the strong, and the wise who understand what’s truly to die for, but violators of mind, heart, and body are, like a Biblical writer put it, “brute beasts” who can’t understand what doesn’t knock them in the heads, scintillate their bodies, or add zeroes to their ridiculous account balances. The power we know begins far past the fail point where their mock-worthy excuse for power ends. Creations of love far surpass the pitiful nicks and scratches of those mad with pain and violence, and those lunatics instinctively know it, so they simply cannot let love be genuinely and freely expressed. If they can’t subjugate and control it, they kill to silence it because they are too weak and intimidated to risk listening — since then they might hear something that would change everything. They respond with physical force because they are utterly at a loss to mount rational arguments. They murder the truthful because they hate and fear truth. Such people are not formidable but pathetic, negligible, of little enduring consequence. No wonder Jesus said, “Do not fear them.”

We were given to believe that Biblical writers were concerned with “spiritual” things, even though they clearly wrote of the here and now, and their words were never more pertinent than they are today.

Daring, self-willed, they do not tremble when they revile angelic majesties, whereas angels who are greater in might and power do not bring a reviling judgment against them before the Lord. But these, like unreasoning animals, born as creatures of instinct to be captured and killed, reviling where they have no knowledge, will in the destruction of those creatures also be destroyed, suffering wrong as the wages of doing wrong. They count it a pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are stains and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, as they carouse with you, having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children; forsaking the right way, they have gone astray, having followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; but he received a rebuke for his own transgression, for a mute donkey, speaking with a voice of a man, restrained the madness of the prophet.
These are springs without water and mists driven by a storm, for whom the black darkness has been reserved. For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved.
— 2 Peter 2:10-19

We abhor the idea that those words might describe the “leaders” we know, even while we recognize that they are apt — even understated — for rulers long past whose lies and secrets already have been exposed. The difference? Our current rulers’ lies and secrets yet remain to be exposed, although lately the revelations have accelerated.

Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments have become moth-eaten. Your gold and your silver have rusted; and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire. It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure! Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; and the outcry of those who did the harvesting has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you.
— James 5:1-6

Righteous people don’t resist, not because they can’t or because it’s wrong, but because they are occupied with doing right. They face their brothers and sisters, turning their backs on those who hate them. They don’t ask permission, because no one can dictate right and truth. No one has permission to give them. Those who pretend to be truth’s keepers and benefactors are liars — church or state, expert or guru, leader or savior. Asking or petitioning or protesting liars and thieves only plays into their lies and dignifies their crimes.

Stop listening to them. Start hearing each other. Stop watching them. Watch out for each other. Stop responding to them. Our conversation is with our peers, not harebrained fools who delude themselves as being superior. Grow up.

Please let me know what you think!

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