My friend, Raja Rao, told me of the Buddhist tradition of the mate of the deceased remaining at the funeral pyre, stirring the embers with a stick until the last solid part becomes ash. And then they throw in the stick.
It takes discipline to undo the discipline of conditioning. The last discipline to undo is undoing.
Nietzsche speaks of the stoic philosophers’ attempts to follow nature in such mocking tones because he assumes that the indifference he imagines for nature is impossible to man. I must agree that indifference seems impossible to man, barring a willful ignorance born of the kind of insufferable oppression possible only within civilization. Where I find argument with him is in blaming the indifference on nature when it is clearly civilization that devotes vast creative energy attempting to corral, tame and ride the lively, hardly indifferent dance of nature, with institutions, calendars and physical constructions to digitize and categorize its variety into manageability for the bean counter mind. It is western culture’s inevitable indifference to the freely boundless creative energy of nature in either shutting it out or turning it to man’s short sighted purposes of profit that Nietzsche finds man unable to tolerate, and instinctually, naturally act passionately in stark contrast to its grey walls. The discipline he saw in the stoics was their undoing culture’s discipline of indifference to nature to be free to follow its natural curve.
•My favorite comedian of all time, Bill Hicks, in explaining how life got to be such a mess told the story of Adam and Eve, lying in the lush carpet of grass along the bank of a clear blue river in the afterglow of sex, munching fruit picked from plants growing at hand, laughing at a wolf cub and a fawn frolic in the glade while their mothers, the bitch and the doe, chatted in the shade.
Adam said, “This is Heaven!”
Eve replied, “Yeeaahh. It’s just not enough, is it?”
There’s a business principle I came across in a coffee machine gripe session about a clog in the efficient processing of our design due to our manager who’d gotten promoted into a job he was rotten at and spoiled all the work we’d been doing. It’s called the Peter Principle … don’t laugh, this is serious shit … anyway, the Peter Principle is based on the inevitability in the upwardly-mobile, ladder-climbing, dog-eat-dog life of a fore-in-hand leash wearing yuppie corporate world of promotions, be they meritorious or time based, that everyone will reach their point of incompetence. So, this principle suggests sending such people back to their former position from which their competence and or experience earned them the promotion, no loss in pay, and to consider them experts in that field with a special insight into the next step in the process. No shame, no blame. It may be the only business principle I ever liked, but never saw implemented. The point of this ramble into the world of business is that the modern version of western civilization’s invasive, growth oriented attitude of the neocon, military-industrial complex has gone way past the point of incompetence and it is high time for demotion back to the last way man lived that was competent to exist symbiotically with our source of life. Oh, wow, some folk still do. Tribes. No matter how dense the populations, being emulsified into interdependent tribes is better social lubricant and cooperative evolution than national boulders of masses competing for conformity inside borders whose leaders compete for domination within and without.
•Ever since Thanks¿giving? I have had this bright growing ball of an idea of what may satisfy every lament justifiably voiced since I pulled my head out of my own little minahana self sufficiency efforts and paid attention to the whole whiney choir. You might think me extremely right wing for how much I think most folk's problems are inability to maintain their addiction to cultural habits of which they are unaware fostered by the leaders as a source of their own income. You might think me extremely left wing for how little I care for ownership, patents, copyrights, competition or the accumulation of material wealth. I see both sides in that argument as mankind’s unconscious 16,000 year old procrastination of returning to its natural symbiotic coevolution with its environment.
Such thinking has had me drop comments on others blogs anywhere near relevant and have typed some with Troutsky on it, but until I sent the following in an email to my dear friend, Erica, I hadn’t put enough loose ends together to even make a spider web of this wonderful, seemingly workable alternative to western civilizations' "mother culture", voiced profoundly by Daniel Quinn, that is expanding as I type. The excerpt from the letter:
"Well, like catnip to a cat, you dangled your curiosity before my voraciously exciting feeling that my innate simplicity could be a solution for more than my own dealing with leadership of imperialistic elite as a way to run a civilization. My post, "Adapting" was written at the time the idea was making connections of many loose ends for me. Basically it involved the four indigenous speakers who Amy Goodman had the sense of irony I always feel on Thanks¿giving? and featured them on Democracy Now … a new regular part of my life is tuning into her on weekdays. What the native American, Bolivian, Inuit and Hawaiian brought home to me, especially the Bolivian, is that the steam roller attitude of western culture they are railing against is the same steam roller that is so ubiquitous within western culture no one notices it happening to each of us from birth and more oppressively every day thereafter — hell, we proudly call it the "American Way of Life" in spite of the rest of the American hemisphere resenting us for it. Any genetic memory of living symbiotically with nature with which we are born is totally useless to an infant trying to absorb the artificial environment of its birth and most often a cause for shame if intuitively acted upon in public, ie. the public outcry against nursing mothers. The steam roller is first applied by our parents for our protection, safety and security in that big bad steam roller world that taught them to act that way out of love. It is excused at all levels.
So, here I am, listening to my indigenous self, which I have been resuscitating in slow measures of consciousness for thirty years now, and hearing the harmony it sings with these indigenous testimonies and saying to myself, just as the Bolivian said of the 80% indigenous population who realized the strength of their unity in throwing out the leadership elite, "Yeah, we can do this!"
Now, to what "this" is. The only thing it is for sure is embryonic, but healthy. It goes something like this: to relate the core commonality of the indigenous peoples to the innate indigenous self born within each of the children of the invading cultures who not only sympathize with them but can see the ultimate sense in admitting western culture is a destructive mistake, just as our imperialistic wars have been, and to return to cooperative symbiosis with the planet in the form of small interdependent tribal families whose administration concerns only their own business within and without the tribe. The only thing resembling a central government would be a clan of "fair witnesses" ala Robert Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange land whose ongoing function would be as overseers of the health of the environment and the planet as a whole and whose secondary function would be to serve as arbiter in inter tribal business, only when requested by the parties involved.
It could develop and grow right where we are with no disruption of the world of the elite resembling a revolution. We would be dropping out in plain sight. (A sort of 'Atlas Shrugged' in reverse, eh, Troutsky, without the hiding?) Several tribes go together and build a wind powered generator or solar panel station here. Tribal members invest in material and sewing machines to make clothing for barter for electricity and food there. Money is never used anywhere. Trade is carried on by barter accounts open to all on the internet with tribal interests coagulating and overlapping as blogs do now. A tribal plumbing business has regular customers in eleven tribes which pay them in food and electricity. Once the vacuum of the growing independent movement is noticed by leaders needing people to lie to, we will be there, a solid block of votes on how to dismantle the idea of central elite leadership. When we stand they will fall from our laps like the crumbs they've always been. Since my idea is to be a world wide borderless one the tribes of each former nation will have their own government to let down easy. The dissolution of borders is not to homogenize the world cultures but to allow to them to flourish with a freedom impossible under central governments of large populations enforcing conformity. This is where the fair witness clan will play a roll in the transition as a diplomatic corps to explain that the only planetary law is the golden rule and the only planetary justice is karma. As for the infrastructure as it is, after weeding out the production practices not symbiotic with the environment such as the rape, poisoning, murder of natural resources and overproduction of humans, we could run factories as coops with the administrative tribe profiting no more than the screw turners on the assembly line.
The longer I go on the more I think of — the major flaw is that I am basing it on humanity having the same sensibilities as I do. The rest seems doable as falling off a log.”
That’s the letter, nothing to add, but am begging for feedback from anyone who reads my rants. Can’t begin a world wide idea without feedback.
Love to all.