Something is percolating. Dreams have been bringing it to the fore over the last few nights, but I don’t actually have words for “the thing” yet. I might find them in the course of writing this post, but I might also flail around, shining the flashlight into the recesses of my mind in a haphazard manner. Guess we’ll see.
First, some background. Way-back-when I had a blogger blog that I used for family stuff and for sorting out different philosophical ideas. I wrote a post there, called “Termites and tsunamis” back in December 2004. (Link goes to the archived post on the Internet Wayback Machine, since I’ve cleared out that old blog and redirected anyone who stumbles upon it.)
In that post I said:
Ok, let’s go. You know I’m looking at things from the perspective of everything leading to the atomization of social structures and toward worldwide individual freedom… that’s the basis of my viewfinding. My perspective is that as things move along over the next hundred years, we’ll be seeing a lot of the old social entities crumbling from within, or being pushed over from without. Termites and tsunamis. As evidence of this shift, I look for “signposts”…
A couple of weeks before that (also in December 2004), I posted this:
Tiny grains are moving… being washed away by waves… creating a whole new shoreline. I have a couple of things for you to read, here. They give me a rush of pleasure with the hints of things to come. I’ve long held to the idea that things in this world are changing, but not by the orders of the powers-that-be. It’s us termite-like little guys who are eating away at the formal structures of the world, and creating something new and exciting right under their noses. Freedom is coming folks. It’s coming everywhere, and it isn’t going to be stopped. The powers-that-be see this, and flail around trying to hold up the walls of their comfortable beach houses, but our waves and our termite-selves are slowly eroding them away. It’s a glorious thing to behold!
And on August 31, 2009, there was this (Migraine medicine musings):
So I’ve been thinking this morning. Bear with me here, since this may be partially induced by the migraine medicine I took last night.
Typically, I go around and around, without landing anywhere, on the whole “government should do everything” push that we all seem to be engaged in.
There’s the side of me that’s so completely wedded to the American idea… freedom, liberty, creativity, courage, endless horizons, the primacy of the individual… I see it kind of like one great big amazing circus. The Greatest Show on Earth! Look at us go! This side is normally completely dominant. I love this feeling of the American character. I breathe it like air in the wide open country out West. It’s inspiring and life-affirming, to me.
Then there’s the other part of me that sees just how damned scary all of that is to so many people. A lot of people like to watch a circus, and live vicariously through the trapeze artists and lion tamers, but not a lot of people want to be the performers in the circus. Most of us just don’t have the guts. And really, there is nothing wrong with wanting a little safety in one’s life. I can empathize with that idea too.
My insight this morning is this: The problem I seem to have with the idea of turning responsibility for the circus over to the government so everyone can feel safer, is that it is just so damned Boring that way. Dull, dull, dull. Lacking in imagination. Rote. Repeated. Practiced so many times, there’s no new way to do it. Utterly and completely BORING.
If the government gets to have ultimate responsibility for, and by extension control of, everything… our finances, our health, our education, our jobs, our environment, our washing machine size and water usage, our toilet flushes, our light bulbs… then just how much is there left for any particular individual to give a shit about? If the government is responsible for ensuring “correct and fair” results for all our biggest acts in life, all our biggest decisions, all our charitable impulses, why bother dreaming outside the anthill?
Hasn’t this been done too many times to count, throughout history? I mean, yeah, we call it different names… Theocracy, Monarchy, Autocracy, Kleptocracy, Socialism, Fascism, Communism, Totalitarianism… yada, yada, yada. The age of the Greeks, the Roman Empire, the Byzantine Empire, the Ottoman Empire, the British Empire, the New World Order, the UN, the European Union… the Mongols, the Goths (the Visigoths! Whatever they were… Goths with vision?). The Cherokee, the Iroquois, the Sioux, the Miami. Everyone fighting everyone else for control of land and other people, in particular their own neighbors, who bug the hell out of them with their different ways and their different ideas. Others fighting to rid themselves of the need to make their own decisions while also controlling their neighbors because their neighbors make different decisions and might be more successful at life without the shackles of government on their ankles. What a complete lack of imagination this mindset takes. A bunch of crabs in a pot, pulling each other down so we can all get boiled together.
Basically, every governmental system we’ve tried ultimately ends up meaning that someone else is responsible for everything that matters. We had a chance to do it differently in the US, but we got scared with the Great Depression, and looked to government to save the day here too. And so the great march toward world-wide collectivism continued. With just a few hiccups here and there.
So I watch the passing of this American idea, and I think to myself, on the one hand “well, it is a country meant for the young-at-heart after all, and maybe the youth in this country really did mean to vote for collectivism. Maybe this is what they want. All money and all power and all choice in the hands of the government, which will then decide who is moral enough to get a share back, and whose ideas are not worth the time it takes to dismiss them. It’s not the America I dream about it, but maybe this dream isn’t meant for me any more.”
Then on the other hand I think: Do we really all have to be collectivists in this world, in order to come to an eventual agreement that this is getting really dull? How boring can a people get?
In November of 2010, I posted Reflections On Yesterday’s Wave. If you recall, those were the main Tea Party years, and Obamacare had just passed, and Republicans took the House in the election. This post referenced a message I wrote on a private board back in February of 2009. (Ah! Links within links!)
In February of 2009, (yes, just after Obama’s inauguration) I wrote this on a private message board, devoted to the philosophies of Elias. (All my non-ya-ya friends, especially my beloved Christian friends and family should probably just not click on the link. Y’all always knew I was a little off-base, and that I get ideas from odd sources, but verifying it, in black and white, so to speak, may not be your cup of tea. I love you guys… I really do, so I’m just asking you to keep intact, some of your comfort zone about me. I’d hate to lose you based on different sets of philosophical explorations. There are a lot of philosophical foundations in my belief systems… some more traditional than others. Some more out-there. If you haven’t read my first post on this blog, maybe a click there would be a little more easily digested.)
(There I go on a tangent again, and I’ve barely even started this post. Yes, my brain can be a scary place… I believe we already established that some time ago.)
Ok… current reflections to follow, but first, here’s the post:
I think I came here today to read this post. I don’t think I really have any good insight to offer in regards to your specific situation, or anything like that, but I find it interesting that I had an impulse to come to the group today (which I haven’t done in… well, a very long time) and then I come across this post and it resonates. “Say something!”
So… hmmm. (Adding this bit after writing a lot of stuff below: Obviously, this whole reply is not in direct response to what you’ve written. You asked if other people are experiencing what you are, and you’ve gotten a lot of replies validating that they are indeed. This is just really my thought trajectory sparked by your question, but not really in answer to it. Ie: I in no way believe that this has anything to do with what you were seeking when you wrote your note, and I totally know mileages will vary.)
My experiences of things I’ve done over the last few years have lent themselves to a few over-arching themes.
The major one being that “Reality is. It’s not a question of what I want to change, as much as it is a question of how I am going to deal with it.” I have created a reality, by drawing it to myself, so to get what I meant to get out of it, I have to look at it head on. Reality is. Period. I should note my inner responses, discover their causes and work to understand myself. But I still have to accept that Reality Is. The other part of it is that Reality is the Effect. Not the Cause. If I want my reality to change, I have to know myself and what I’m doing. If I don’t do that, I’ll just keep creating the same reality over and over.
So, for me, the big questions that keep popping up have similar answers… and I’m getting a lot of questions from people. The answer for me… I’ve learned it the super-hard-way… is well… just face the reality that everyone is going to pick what they pick. They’re going to do it. The question is are you going down with their ship?
That’s how I’m handling the economic turmoil. Everyone is going to do what they do. Congress is feeding us a huge crap sandwich, which will drive the economy into a further tailspin. It’s what people want to do. It’s like a ship going down while everyone cartoonishly tries to run to the highest spot on the deck hoping they’ll get rescued. They won’t.
So, for me, then the question is not about worrying about the country. It will survive, after a painful way of learning what we need to learn, the basic concept will survive. My job is to make sure I can swim. Isn’t the whole purpose of the Elias thing to be about people learning not to lean on “authority” and to rely on themselves?
“The emphasis is shifting, literally, from that of authorities and certain individuals as the directors of masses and groups of individuals into the expression of the reality being directed by the individual. The emphasis is moving into the expression of focusing the attention and appreciation, and recognizing the worth of the individual and the abilities of the individual.
You shall be directing of your reality, individually and intentionally, in an objective manner, rather than allowing yourselves to be dictated to by mass beliefs or authority figures that you have set as your examples or your directors previously.
In this, you offer yourselves tremendous freedom and new opportunities to be exploring this physical dimension and what you may be creating within this physical dimension in a much more expansive manner, allowing you to move within consciousness without limitation, but continuing the blueprint or the design of this particular physical dimension.”
That was session 846b… the Website video session .
My interpretation of that has always been that the “authorities” are going to seriously over-reach and create a huge crash-and-burn scenario. There’s pretty much no other way for authoritarian systems to give up power. They won’t unless they have to. So, in one form or another, the authorities are going to try to control everything, and we will all escape like tiny little termites.
But not before a lot of people get hurt (the “trauma” we’re trying to avoid for ourselves by learning what we need to learn earlier than we otherwise might). And my personal belief is that the more the “authorities” try to “do something!” the worse the hurting is going to be. They’ll try to squeeze the life out of the country if they have to in order to hold onto power. And, again, in my mind and interpretation, that’s not something I need to fear, it’s just the reality I need to accept, because that is human nature.
We aren’t shifting to get away from human nature. We’re shifting to become self-directed and accepting of human nature and the choices of others, in my interpretation. I don’t have to try to fix the authorities or try to make them understand. They’ll figure it out when we all slip between their fingers like a handful of sand. I just have to decide they aren’t controlling my choices. I don’t have to try to bring a lifeboat around to everyone in a panic. I just need to offer my opinion if I’m asked. My opinion is always “look at reality, accept that it is real, and make a decision based on that.” I trust that in the end, we will in fact end up with a whole lot of shifting going on. I just can’t direct it or decide how anyone else is going to shift. I’m responsible for my own shifting. No one else’s.
I can’t emphasize this enough: It’s all my interpretation in this note, and I am very sure it isn’t going to find a lot of agreement in the world at large, but it does give me peace in the world’s turmoil.
So given that, the question is what do I think will happen as the authoritarian systems crumble and engage their war against the individual to avoid losing power, and what plan do I have to address it on the personal level? Step one of our plan started a couple of years ago. The handwriting has been on the wall on the economy for quite a while… so our plan (Mike’s and mine), was “get the hell out of debt.” We’ve also got a plan for if things get bad enough economically that our families have to start combining households. None of us are there yet, but it could happen. And these plans aren’t being made in a frenzy of panic, they’re just like a reality check more than anything. “What would we do if…” “What skills would be beneficial to have anyway?” It’s like a pilot taking off in a plane… he always is checking where he’d land if the engines go out. He’s not panicking thinking the engine is going out… he’s just making sure he knows how he’d handle it in that moment. “Can’t do it… we’ll be in the Hudson.” (Amazing transcript of that flight, btw… he said it like he was saying “I’ll meet you at the grocery store.”)
Reading up on the depression has also been a tremendous help. I just got done with Amity Shales’s “The Forgotten Man.” And it really illustrates that those who don’t know their history are doomed to repeat it. Everything that’s being done now economically was tried then… all the beliefs about the economy showing up in the “stimulus (hah!) package” were “new ideas” in the 30’s. It didn’t work then, and it won’t work now. Problem is, the hero image of FDR is the history that people remember. What they don’t remember is his war on individual success, and the “capital strike” that resulted. Knowing what the authorities are going to be aiming for, lets me assess where I stand in relationship to it, and make decisions with that in mind.
So… this was a long-winded way of saying… I’ve felt what you feel. But now, for me, I know it’s a stormy sea and that I’ve got the tools to survive it. I found the tools when I most needed them, and discovered the hard way that I am a pretty damned impressive being. And that makes it ok for the sea to be stormy. Makes it more like an experiment and less like the end of the world. But I still am learning about new tools that I’ve discovered in the meantime… looking at the next big thing and rushing out to play with my tools.
Sorry to be so wordy. But… that’s me. 🙂
So… current reflections. Note again… this was nearly two years ago. At that time, the Tea Parties hadn’t seriously begun to fight. Also, I always go at everything from the inside-out, so I was keeping my interpretation very personal then. There are always mass events, mass movements, of course, and I feel a strong affinity for the movement of the Tea Party masses, who have chosen not to go down with the foolish and idiotic ship of state, who have chosen to let the “Powers That Be” understand that “no” means “NO.” And I lend energy to that effort in my own small way with my little signs and my little votes, but my own personal efforts usually look inward first. It’s just the way I roll. Now though, I’m really enjoying seeing a sort of massive wave of individuals choosing for themselves, and this wave that’s getting stronger intersecting with the actual here-and-now reality.
It wasn’t a pebble tossed into the ocean of reality yesterday. It was a meteor.
I woke up this morning thinking “So it begins.”
Anyway… This is all to say that what I’m watching now, I’ve been watching for quite some time. I’ve been feeling this wave build. The current dreamworld explorations are related to all this from years ago. But, for now, I’m just going to put this background out there, and go feed my dogs.
Themes to explore…
1) What happens when the soil shifts from under everyone’s feet.
2) Predicted stuff ends up taking a lot longer to unfold than anticipated.