Participating and Observing
[thoughts from ~burning woman~ by Sha'Tara]
What brings a world to the brink of destruction? Sorry, that's too general, too "out there," so let me back up a bit: what brings a society to the end of its rise in power and glory? Simply put: participating without observing. Fools rushing in where angels fear to tread and all that. When time appears to be in short supply and money abounds, who wants to sit back and observe, count the costs before plunging in? Hell no, what if someone else beats you to the punch?
For the movers, those who rule and ruin, it's act now, damn the consequences. For the rest, it's "eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die."
And that is such a truism: a society that does not observe itself, does not watch and consider consequences of the path it is on, is one that dies. When forces driven by a leadership that only knows raw greed and associated lusts sweep through such a society, where are the controlling factors; where is the needed balance that prevents catastrophe? Those of us old enough, and who bother to remember, can still feel the painful psychological scars left by the Nazi occupations, their labor and extermination camps. As an example, though this is not a popular observation, what made it difficult for the German Jews in particular to mount any kind of defense against the Nazi onslaught was the belief that a nation of people as civilized and educated as was Germany could never, ever, countenance what Hitler and his SS and Gestapo set out to do.
Because of race bias, even to this day it is easier to accept the Rwandan genocide of 1994 (for those who do not remember, in approximately 100 days a million people were massacred, about 20% of the nation's population) than it is to reconcile with the predation of the Nazis. After all, Hitler's people spoke "our" kind of language and they were "white," not a bunch of half naked dark skinned savages yowling through the forests of darkest Africa (and please realize that I am saying this with full, thick, sarcasm aimed at so-called white supremacy).
Much material has been compiled on how "such a thing could happen" in a "white" and "Christian" country. But there is one reason I do not recollect ever being touched upon, and that would be a people's failure to observe its own time. A complete lack of feeling for the unthinkable changes leading to such impossible happenings. In America and England, the short years between WWI and Hitler's coming to power in 1933 inaugurating his Third Reich, were a time of abandoned revelry. As is the case today, people were too busy having a good time to wonder if it was just a great big bubble that could burst at any given time. And burst it did, especially in America, causing another rush of participation in survivalist retrenchment.
The Jews of Western Europe were too turned in on themselves, too closed off in their safe little ghettos, too busy making money, being well-fed, well dressed, well-separated from the non-Jews, too relatively comfortable, to find the motivation to observe the changing political climate. They had survived pogrom after pogrom and would ride out the Nazi storm in the same way, with minimal loss. Not understanding their time, they terribly misread their history.
The main reason for history repeating itself is that people do not see the road they have blundered on, do not believe it has deep ditches hidden under lush grass, gutted bridges around a sudden bend. Oh, they may well go on about history, or fill themselves full of exciting thoughts about the future, but without knowing much of the current times, all that becomes fanciful. It is said that to understand your times you need to know your history. It might serve better if we turned that around. If you don't understand your times, you can never understand why history is what it is. Do we understand our times today? Surely, smothered, barely able to draw a breath in a soup of information media from newspapers, radio, television and the Internet, we must be the most aware people ever to have existed on this world! Are we? Or is all this expansive and expensive noise nothing more than disinformation in the form of verbal diarrhea?
So why does history repeat itself? That has an elementary answer. The fact is that man's much vaunted civilizations, and civilizing, is nothing more than a chimera. Though such a statement flies in the face of all that is taught, and what appears to be the case on the surface of things, the current times show the truth of it. The greatest hopes of man are plummeting down in head-banging rock and roll, road din, speeding and carnage, disrespect for nature, parents, neighbor, theft from shop lifting to banksterism, immorality, proliferation of educated ignorance, greed, criminal violence and endless wars that defy reason, gangsterism and piracy of global corporations: basically a general breakdown of law and order. Obviously, to an observer this indicates that so-called civilization is taking a severe beating. Especially true this is in countries blessed with an overabundance of opportunities to raise global standards of civilization.
Is this a new phenomenon? A cursory reading of ancient history demonstrates this to be the pattern, that man, as a species, is incapable of maintaining, much less building, a civilization. And the reason is probably as simple as this: that the short-lived creature learns at a very early age that personal selfishness is what will get you what you desire, and those who don't rush to the trough with tusks bared will get the leftovers and die young. All of man's ruling systems are predicated upon this belief!
What can be said of civilization if "civilized" man behaves worse than wild animals? That it isn't endemic to man, nor to this world? Indeed, but it takes honesty to admit that man's civilizations, bar none, were all "forced" on him by those "of whom we do not speak" but who we know from evidence left behind, were here nevertheless; who built up the systems by which a reasonably decent social order based on enforcement of law and order could be maintained. We may not know what their agenda was, what their goal in giving man these systems could have been. We know they jump started civilizations all over the planet, even in areas now under water. Evidence of their works remain in the Andes, the Middle East, Egypt, on the banks of the Ganges, on the South China Sea (now another hot-bed of international conflict), and each year archeological research brings up more. For anyone who "reads" history with an understanding of the present, this undeniably happened.
What were these unknown beings, these "aliens" or "gods" trying to accomplish in setting up organized societies of man? I think they hoped that in time man would develop a kind of hereditary leadership of individuals with a certain temperament that would ensure continuity of their bold initiatives; that a type, either of family or mindset, would grow up to the point where they could have their longevity "genes" and their ESP abilities re-connected so they could guide mankind into it's oft-offered, never achieved, golden age. These compassionate, altruistic, selfless leaders did not materialize and as a consequence, as a species man has not evolved either spiritually, morally or mentally and may well become a doomed experiment.
I must confess that all my life I have looked for the people or beings who brought civilization to man time and again. That set me off on a quest of current, ancient, future and parallel possible histories in the hope that I could connect with some of them, but quietly, so as not to fall victim to the current "theys" who are destroying civilization by promoting a false system of religion, government and economy. I found some of them but they are not currently involved in re-civilizing man, at least not through recognized institutions. They are trying other ways, of which I have spoken before.
Back to earth (and the topic of this essay): man has become an institutional animal, no better in understanding than those millions of cattle who are born on feedlots and force fed to become McDonalds hamburgers. Nor does man, as I see the species, deserve any better because as I read in the Bible long, long ago, judgment, whether of natural or divine origin, must always follow conduct. If conduct be evil, judgment is bitter. In the words of the weeping prophet, Jeremiah (chapter 5 for those who wish to double check):
They do not say to themselves, ‘Let us fear the LORD our God, who gives autumn and spring rains in season, who assures us of the regular weeks of harvest.’
Your wrongdoings have kept these away; your sins have deprived you of good.
“Among my people are wicked men who lie in wait like men who snare birds and like those who set traps to catch men.
Like cages full of birds, their houses are full of deceit; they have become rich and powerful and have grown fat and sleek. Their evil deeds have no limit; they do not plead the case of the fatherless to win it, they do not defend the rights of the poor.
Should I not punish them for this?” declares the LORD. “Should I not avenge myself on such a nation as this?
“A horrible and shocking thing has happened in the land: The prophets prophesy lies, the priests rule by their own authority, and my people love it this way. But what will you do in the end?
And that is my question, as I observe the downfall of my own society; as I watch political hypocrisy, corruption and greed become the chosen way of the time.
What will you do in the end? The answer to that question obviously is, "Nothing." For a people grown fat, lazy, sated with an entitlement mindset, is mentally, morally and physically incompetent; unable to extricate itself from the morass it has created. It wouldn't know where to begin in correcting its deviant path because it refuses to question the edicts of corrupt leaders and bosses; accepts without question the "need" for gross exploitation of natural resources, is satisfied with the cheap offerings at the trough, and believes that wars around the globe are being fought for the official reasons stated, not for the obvious reasons of fear mongering, impoverishment, destabilization of local economies, enslavement, and piracy of dwindling natural resources: all the things any observer must know as fact. Self-deceit is much easier than self-discipline as long as it is others who bear the brunt of global suffering.
So ask yourself this question, in relation to the "lesson" man was to learn from Hitler and his SS. Who are the exploited and oppressed of today's world, those slated for annihilation after serving their turn in the labor camps, and who are the Hitlers and their SS now? And where's that war at on the time map? On my scale it sits at early 1944, with, from the viewpoint of the Hitlers and their SS, an "enemy" invasion unforeseeable. If you don't understand the analogy; if you don't see the parallel, you are not observing.