Where Do We Belong?

We are the descendants of heroes and the sons and daughters of survivors. Every one of our forebears fought the fight he or she had to fight in order to bring survival out of chaos.

We are the heirs, as well, to freedom and plenty. Those before us who saved, and toiled, and planned, and built, and saved again, have passed on their wealth to our hands.

We, like they, have been born into the limitations of human bones, and seek to achieve more than could possibly be expected of anything made just of chemicals.

We are strivers and seekers, workers and people who persist and hold the line.

We have flaws and faults enough to make a battleship cry. But we ride over them or release them to the maw of the past and move on. We keep going, washing up and finding the means to make the next step.

We are the descendants of heroes because we are those who make our days happen.

We know who we are. Even when we are cursing each other on our highways and boulevards we do so on a ground of common affinity for the urge to survive in broad strokes.

Where do we belong?

Do the sons of pioneers belong in a city where invaders and burglars are allowed to sue their victims?

Do they belong in a country so terrified of weakness that it drains its lifeblood into steelheaded nuclear bombs?

Or in a neighborhood where the most imaginative and pleasant communication is one of complaint between retired fishwives?

These are certainly not places that feel right to my blood.

A nation where half of all you produce goes to the commonweal, especially to support those who cannot do?

Do we belong on a planet that is so mortgaged to corporate interests that it destroys its own biosphere to preserve primitive technology? Or that is so in love with what it can make from fossilfuel derivatives that it ignores the effects it is having on its seas and rivers?

Hearts say no.

On the other hand, did the frontiersman "belong" trapped in freezing snows in mountain passes, up to his waist in ice cold roaring streams with a finger hold the last connection to survival? Did we "belong" in the redoubts of Bunker Hill watching our best leaders die from British lead? Did we "belong" in the trenches ducking the Kaiser's bullets or facing Hitler's tanks with hand grenades? Or following Chief Joseph on his long trek while our children died? Noone there was comfortable. They stayed because they were scared to leave, ashamed to back down, mad enough to fight anything, or just determined to win.

We have our own jungle, uncharted territory. It is ours to conquer or flinch from as we choose.

The Perimeter

The outside of the jungle has three major blockades to progress, barriers that intertwine so as to seem impenetrable.

The first is socialized apathy. The second is technical closure. The third is popular hypnotism.

Socialized Apathy

There are large segments of population who have settled for apathetic indifference to most factors in their lives. Those who can make their way financially are happy to do so without making any decisions or fighting for or against anything. They do not weigh, evaluate or measure good or bad or indifferent -- they stare at. They avoid whenever possible. To do so they affect a monkey-like chatter about topics of great unimportance -- baseball statistics, the intricacies of lingerie or lip glosses, or the price of butter, or of fashion.

Whether loudly affected or dullen, the apathy has its common threads which give it away. These threads are the invisible assumptions which mark the limits of discourse to weather, sports, and life re-runs inherited from Mom, Pop or Captain Video. "Whacha gonna do..that's life!" "Yew godda problem? See a doctah!" or "Make nice!". The themes of resignation, elective indifference, forsaken power and the sad sigh of consciousness committed to the asylum of no-response and no-create mark them.

Technical Closure

Consumers tend to buy what they have bought before; technologies tend to settle into grooves of sameness. There are technical principles used in the building trades which have not been changed for two hundred years. Laws protect them from change in many instances. Imagine! Laws forbidding the creation of technology! Next thing you know there will be laws forbidding the curing of certain diseases because one school of professionals doesn't know how to do it!

Technical closure means believing that technology is as it should be; in other words not driving toward the front seeking new ideals and methods of technology. How seriously for example have we pursued "free energy" as a technical possibility? When Bucky Fuller said he could build a viable
house for five thousand dollars, how many did we invite him to build? Technical closure is a glue closing the mind, adhesion to what is; to shift, it needs to be pried open again like a lockjawed whale.

How much we could learn if we only didn't know what we do!

Social Hypnotism

Television, sugardiets, a policebased society, and a draining, devitiating tax network add up to a broad mangled awareness which has been slammed into a spinny hypnotised cooperativeness. The symptoms range from dullfaced automatic shuffling to a kind of hyperactive irresponsible blasting, such as is sometimes observed in certain salesmen. A society dedicated to trancestates of various kinds, riddled with dead or frozen attention units, denied life and communication by its own devices.

This is not all there is. There are also constant renewals, awakenings, regenerations of possibility. There is what might be termed a battle between awareness and the smothering, hypnotizing invasions of beliefs more conducive to sleep or death or blind ritual.

The Jungle's Nature

The Jungle of Belief plunges all its tap-roots into the decision NOT to experience. Once that decision is cleared, the nature of the Jungle shifts and the garden-like qualities of fresh breezes and sunlight begin sweeping in to the dankest composted fens within. It is only wisdom gone awry that makes the shadows, the toxic serpents, the need for the violent battle call and the animal blood-hunger.

The fundamental nature of the Jungle, as it is found in every cloistered heart, is a garden of open affections, creative energies, quick and giving attention, and the sureness of a caring understanding guiding a keen intelligence in the use of benevolent technologies.

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