Still This Love Crap

Have you ever experienced unrequited love? Ever love someone who was so out of your league they didn’t know you existed? Ever been horribly, unfairly, unceremoniously jilted by a lover? Ever love someone for years who treated you like shit most of the time? Ever love someone who turned out to be completely different than the one you thought you fell in love with?

Ever tried to muster up feelings of love for someone or something you did not, could not, love?

And yet still, despite its ephemeral nature—from its meaning, to its translation, to how it is individually experienced—some of our greatest thinkers, philosophers, social critics, poets, not to mention a good chunk of pop culture, still repeats “Love is the answer.”

We should love everyone and especially nature. That’s what’s wrong with the world, they insist, not enough love. And every time I hear this, I roll my eyes, even when it comes from someone I love.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/b08njtjg

Most recently I heard it in an interview coming from Wendell Berry (link). How someone so inspiring, who has led such a charmed and wholesome and respectable life, who now at an advanced age seems so wise, could repeat such nonsense confirms for me only one thing: “We don’t see things for what they are, we see them for what we are.”

Love is the answer to the West’s problems, they say, because you take care of what you love. And the younger thinker and social critic Paul Kingsnorth agrees with him.

How lovely.

Now here’s a homework assignment I’d love to give to these fools. Kingsnorth likes to study tribal cultures, which I think is really cool. He likes them because they have a solid home in nature, unlike Westerners. And I agree. So, I think he should ask all those tribal folks their opinions about this ‘love’ solution so many Western thinkers keep harping on about.

My bet is, it doesn’t translate. At all. I bet he’d have to write an entire essay for them about what he means by love in the first place, let alone how he expects that will solve anything.

How do you make someone love you? Or care about you? I have a difficult time imagining a more monumental task. And yet, somehow those who care about nature are tasked with getting those very great many, like the Technocrats and their vast entourages, to not only love it, but to respect it, to care for it, to nurture it even. Seriously?

What a debilitating delusion they are spewing. And not just once or twice out of an understandable desperation. But constantly, for decades now.

Yet to call it out for the obvious shallow fantasy that it is, I become the bitch.

Well then, so be it. Let me play that role for a minute or two right now.

Imagine Mother Nature is your very own mother. Maybe you love your mother, let’s give it the benefit of the doubt. You love her, but your sisters love her more. And your mother and your sisters are screaming at you—“You don’t love me!” “You don’t care about me!” “You are exploiting me and you must stop!”

How will you respond to their shrieks and demands of love and care? Deny your lack of love, perhaps? Maybe yell back that they are all wrong about you? Maybe ask what they mean by that?

You might be so sure of your love that you ask what you can do to prove it?

Maybe Mom replies she wants you to write her a poem professing your loving feelings. So you do. You go even further, and you write 10 poems and throw in a tediously long essay to boot. And you’re very proud of your efforts and you feel you’ve really captured the intense love you have for her.

And she says she likes them, even the tediously long essay. In fact, everyone who loves her also agrees how perfectly you’ve captured those feelings of love through your words. Astonishing.

But, after all, those are just words, and you said to love her is to care for her, so she wants to see some action.

So with the same zeal you wrote the ten poems and tediously long essay you tackle the part where your loving words become caring actions.

You chop wood and carry water for her. You refrain from any negativity in her presence, because she doesn’t like it. You insist that everyone in her company, through shame or coercion or even force, abide by her rules and preferences.

At long last, she is satisfied with your efforts. You can feel the power of her appreciation filling your heart and coursing through your veins.

She tells you, “Child, you are a true master of loving care!”

“Except, you see, there’s so many children over there who don’t love me. And their lack of love for me is upstaging your love. Their lack of love is demonstrably more powerful than your true love. What can you do about this?”

And you reply, “Great Mother, don’t you worry, I can make them love you like I do!”

Really? Can you? What makes you so sure about that?

You read them your poems, and they smirk. Then they read your tediously long essay and shrug. You show them your admirable work in fetching wood and carrying water for your Great Mother, and they respond by clear cutting your forest and damming your river.

Then they tell you their favorite joke, laughing all along.

The joke goes like this: There were these three dudes on a yacht. One was an American, another was Russian, and the third one was Mexican. They were all drinking and getting boastful as drunken men like to do.

The Russian said, “In my country, we have so much vodka we can afford to throw it away!” And he takes a full bottle of vodka and throws it into the ocean.

They all laugh harder. So, the Mexican says, “In my country, we have so much tequila we can afford to throw it away!” And he takes a full bottle of tequila and throws it overboard.

And they all laugh harder still. Then the American says, “Well, in my country we have so many . . .

And he picks up the Mexican and throws him overboard.

The Russian and American look at each and howl with laughter. And the American blurts out between guffaws, “Tough love!”

To The Holy Spirit

O Thou, far off and here, whole and broken,
Who in necessity and in bounty wait,
Whose truth is light and dark, mute though spoken,
By Thy wide grace show me Thy narrow gate.

Wendell Berry

Eye-Opening Quotes: R. Hutchins

“The countries of the West are committed to universal, free, compulsory education. The United States first made this commitment and has extended it further than any other. In this country 92.5% of the children who are fourteen years old and 71.3% of those between fourteen and seventeen are in school. It will not be suggested that they are receiving the education that the democratic ideal requires. The West has not accepted the proposition that the democratic ideal demands liberal education for all. In the United States, at least, the prevailing opinion seems to be that the demands of that ideal are met by universal schooling, rather than by universal liberal education. What goes on in school is regarded as of relatively minor importance. The object appears to be to keep the child off the labor market and to detain him in comparatively sanitary surroundings until we are ready to have him go to work.

“The results of universal, free, compulsory education in America can be acceptable only on the theory that the object of the schools is something other than education, that it is, for example, to keep the young from cluttering up homes and factories during a difficult period of their lives, or that it is to bring them together for social or recreational purposes.”

“Education is supposed to have something to do with intelligence. It was because of this connection that it was always assumed that if the people were to have political power they would have to have education. They would have to have it if they were to use their power intelligently. This was the basis of the Western commitment to universal, free, compulsory education. I have suggested that the kind of education that will develop the requisite intelligence for democratic citizenship is liberal education, education through great books and the liberal arts, a kind of education that has all but disappeared from the schools, colleges, and universities of the United States.”

~The Great Conversation: The Substance of a Liberal Education
by Robert M. Hutchins, 1952

More by Hutchins . . .

“Because of experimental science we know a very large number of things about the natural world of which our predecessors were ignorant. In the great books we can observe the birth of science, applaud the development of the experimental technique, and celebrate the triumphs it has won. But we can also note the limitations of the method and mourn the errors that its misapplication has caused. We can distinguish the outlines of those great persistent problems that the method … may never solve and find the clues to their solutions offered by other methods and other disciplines.”

“Liberal education was aristocratic in the sense that it was the education of those who enjoyed leisure and political power. If it was the right education for those who had leisure and political power, then it is the right education for everybody today.”

Zuckerkandl! a comic book Hutchins published in 1968, later made into a cartoon short, narrated himself. It’s about disentanglement and living guilt-free and is said to be a parody of Freud.

Fostering Dependency

I remember well the first time I heard the expression ‘learned helplessness’. My mom used the term and I didn’t understand it. I asked her to explain, which went something like, “As if a man is actually incapable of doing the laundry.”

Some time later I heard it used again, only this time in reference to a woman who wouldn’t dream of changing a tire because she might break a freshly manicured nail.

These are benign examples of a much more serious issue. A little co-dependency amongst family and friends can be a very good thing. It reminds us we need each other, and it’s nice to be needed, as long as it’s not too needy. 🙂

But there is a much more nefarious kind of learned helplessness that is proliferating in our society and because it’s being sold by some very slick salesmen it goes on, continually championed by those who should know better. US.

This is the kind of dependency that fosters anxiety and dis-ease, because it promotes frustration, alienation, victimhood, powerlessness. Under the guise of convenience, comfort, safety, and even fun, we have allowed ourselves to become dependent on criminals, sociopaths, martyrs, tyrants dressed up as experts and beneficent leaders and stars.

Food, water, shelter, health, energy, entertainment, protection. These are all crucial aspects of human life we’ve willingly outsourced to others. Gone are the days for the vast majority who cooked from their own gardens, played and sang tunes around the fire pit, cared for their own ill, built their own homes. How many generations must we go back to know a time before politicians were household names and stock markets dealt only in livestock?

How many folks believe we have it so much better in our ultra-civilized modern world because they’ve bought the propaganda of their oppressors, those who actively promote and celebrate our dependency as progress?

There is a wellspring of peace of mind knowing that if you ever dare say “Take this job and shove it” you won’t end up homeless and hungry.

If you could do one thing in the new year to release the yoke of dependency just a bit, or a bit more, what would you do?

Happy New Year from the wee homestead, y’all,
thanks for reading!

The Folly of Forgiveness

The single most destructive virtue of Christianity is forgiveness.

In fact, it’s not a virtue at all, it’s a vice. It’s a ready-made excuse for laziness, cowardice, avoidance and self-aggrandizement.

Which is more challenging? Which is more beneficial to society?
A. Forgive those who trespass upon you.
B. Hold them accountable for their actions, or their lack of them.

The New Age movement, the modern outgrowth of our Christian heritage melded with aspects of Eastern religion/philosophy, shares this fundamental folly. You quite literally cannot read a spiritual or New Age text that does not claim something like this:

“Ultimately, make it your goal to move on to forgiveness of yourself and those involved in causing you pain in the past. Forgiveness doesn’t mean that what happened to you was acceptable. It simply means that you are no longer willing to allow a past injury to keep you from living fully and healthfully in the present.” Dr. Christiane Northrup, The Wisdom of Menopause: Creating Physical & Emotional Health During the Change

Nonsense. Forgiveness most certainly DOES mean that you’ve found the offense acceptable—you’ve given them “a pardoning” — look it up!

Forgiveness: “To pardon; to remit, as an offense or debt, to overlook an offense, and treat the offender as not guilty.” Webster’s Dictionary 1905

When a school of philosophy/religion/spirituality (Or individuals!) must change the meaning of words in order to fulfill their mission of manipulation it becomes propaganda and begs the question, “Who benefits?”

It’s not simply forgiving past injury that’s keeping anyone from living healthfully in the present, true peace of mind comes when justice is served. We witness the lack of justice and accountability all around us today, and we have centuries of brainwashing in this particular vice-cum-virtue to thank for that.

Burying the hatchet is rarely a guarantee it stays buried. Life is not a sitcom and taking the easy way out is testament to a lack of virtue, not a grounding in it. “Kiss and make up” solves little. “Turn the other cheek” is a blanket invitation to abusers.

To forgive someone who has not asked for it, nor shows remorse, nor penance, nor changed his ways is not healthy—not for the individual, not for the culture—in the long run.

It might keep you from getting cancer next year, or so the New Age self-helpers keep insisting, but you’ve only kicked the can down the road and made it worse for the perpetrators’ next victims. Good for the guru’s pocketbook and status, not so good for future generations.

The Christian myth that claims those who live in proverbial glass houses should not throw stones is a recipe for granting pardon to serial criminals while demonizing petty theft and other personal, minor infractions.

Everyone might very well be a sinner, but not all sins are created equal.

Holding others’ accountable for their actions is far more difficult than giving them a pardon. It’s exhausting to have standards of behavior and stick to them. It’s miserable to feel the loneliness that comes with not accepting abuse in one’s relationships and surroundings. It sucks to stand up for yourself against the group and especially against loved ones. But battered partners who don’t leave, Stockholm syndrome, normalized corruption, addiction, insanity and suicide are the direct result of a culture obsessed with forgiveness.

Unearned forgiveness is:

*A green light to bad behavior
*Victim-blaming for those who don’t want to, or choose not to, forgive
*Spiritual bypassing
*Ensuring history repeats
*Lowering the morality bar
*Killing the messenger
*Requiring scapegoats (represented by our most celebrated scapegoat, Jesus)
*Requiring lies, whitewashing, spinning of narratives to maintain illusions
*Forcing individuals to fit the will of the power structure rather than forcing the power structure to fit the will of the people

The personal and political spheres overlap—what we tolerate in our own house, we tolerate in the White House. What results is repeat offenders who are eternally tolerated.

The New Age movement has managed to create the worst of two worlds: The magical child thinking and materialism of the West combined with the spiritual hierarchies, self-hypnosis and toxic mysticism of the East.

Photo by Savanna Goldring on Pexels.com

Next post: What I think the New Agers have gotten right.
Whaaa . . . .?!

Nature=Master Deceiver

“There’s no lie in nature.”

I’ve heard this repeated so many times now, from so many different and I believe well-meaning voices, that I decided it’s high time to add my own voice to this nonsense.

Nature doesn’t deceive. Nature doesn’t try to fool you.

Today this is repeated by quite a few philosophers, conspiracy theorists and ‘truthers’ as a way to elevate nature above man’s conning and cunning ways and to condemn our current fantasy-based reality. I agree our so-called civilization deserves plenty of condemning. But, I do not intend to trade one set of illusions for another.

Apparently this attitude goes way back, to the likes of Walter Russell and an entire camp of German Idealists. I love nature as much, maybe even more, than these guys, that’s for sure. Yet my experience is there are no greater deceptions to be found anywhere else, the worst of man’s worm tongue included, than there are to be found in nature.

You wouldn’t dare!

There are mushrooms so similar that not only a spore print, but a microscope is needed to tell them apart. Poisonous Amanita spissa or delicious Amanita rubescens? Chlorophyllum molybdites, lepiota Americana or macrolepiota procera? Do you want a nice dinner or an evening hugging the toilet? Don’t be fooled, choose wisely!

“Destroying Angel”
the deadly Amanita virosa

Man got his idea for camouflage directly from nature, obviously. In some cases the camouflage is so stealth you could be staring directly at a living creature and not even know until it moves.

Take a walk in the woods and you’ll see sticks that look like snakes and insects that look like sticks. There are spiders that look a lot like bats and bugs that look more like birds.

There are plants like poison ivy, my greatest garden nemesis, that look completely benign, leave no feeling or trace at all in the moment, but 12-24 hours later, long after you’ve forgotten all about it, can elicit a rash so severe you’ll be begging for relief even if it takes the form of a cocktail of toxic pharmaceutical drugs.

That horror story is my arm, on too many occasions to count.

The possum plays dead so effectively he’ll fool nearly any predator.
The most beautiful flowers can kill you.

Datura inoxia

The most disgusting and unappetizing swamp insect can be delectable.

In fact, to say nature is THE Master Deceiver is even an understatement if you ask me. Nature is a raving, lying bitch at least half the time.

Living so close to nature, growing food, co-creating with the land has offered me the greatest single lesson of my life: Cute and nice are the camouflage of prey and pets.

Nature does not play nice. Nice is for ninnies.

It’s considerably more deceptive when man’s hands meddle in nature’s mix as well, quite impossible sometimes to tell where one ends and the other begins.

At the Dentist

It’s amazing to like my dentist during this COVID Plandemic-Scamdemic even more than I had before. Having despised every dentist I’ve ever had until I found her about a decade ago, this has been a most pleasant re-affirmation of my perpetual superior judgement.

She has obliged her staff and clients to the temperature gun on the 3rd eye upon arrival, but apparently that is her limit on personal infringements, bless her heart. She did take all the magazines out of the waiting room, which is disappointing, but tolerable. I did enjoy shuffling through current issues of Texas Highways on my regular visits.

But, she did not require a face-diaper for the privilege of entering her offices or sitting in her waiting room. Again, bless her heart. And you know, she has a garden. Yes indeed, she does, with vegetables even! Heavens only knows how she finds the time.

Of course, there’s the nitrous oxide that’s thoughtfully pumped into my airways when I visit her, and that’s all the more reason to sing her praises. Does it bother me that it cost $50 extra in order to be totally high while my gums are prodded and my teeth drilled? Nope, not really! But, I accept we won’t be able to afford such extravagant expenses for much longer.

They love me even more when I’m on the gas anyway, and frankly, the feeling is mutual. Anyone would prefer me on the gas, myself included.  You know, my hygienist has the same name as me and also totally loves purple—come on now—how is that not a match made in heaven?!

Anyway, I think there was once a point to this post. Seems I’ve lost the thread.

I think what it was is that, I really felt for them, this office full of ladies wearing masks, but not beholden upon others to do the same, not in the least. Nothing highlights righteousness more than leading by example, without coercion, threat, or the myriad other brands of shaming and manipulation.

I tenderly inquired to my hygienist, “Is it hard to wear that mask all day?” She said it was difficult indeed and so she chooses not to wear it in public at all.  I said it gives me a headache instantly, she nodded in agreement.

I thought, in my well-gassed stupor, isn’t that sweet? I furthermore mused that it certainly must be that the whole public mask-wearing nonsense is really about trying to get us all to empathize with those poor long-suffering working folk who are forced to wear masks all day, like my dear purple-wearing hygienist with the same name as me, bless all our dear hearts.

That’s really what it’s all about, right? The abusers and Satanists and worshippers of whateverandwhoeverthefuck—well, they’ve just chosen the left-hand path to wholesomeness and that’s really their way of caring so damn much about us all, right?  Of course, everyone should suffer as the mask-wearers suffer.

Right?

 

Compassion Minus Consent

I’m something of a stickler for words, but what can I say, when you teach foreign languages for two decades a fetish for ‘le mot juste’ just comes with the territory.

Furthermore, when you love being a student as much as I do, it’s expensive to disagree with your teachers.  On the other hand, it’s far more expensive to not disagree when I think a disagreement is in order.

Which brings me back to a recent post where I disagree with my current favorite teacher, James True.  I don’t think I was persuasive enough in my argument, because he tried to shame me with group-think in front of the whole class (by class I mean his YouTube audience).  It didn’t work though, because my love of words is far stronger than my capacity for shame, or group-think.

I lie awake at night thinking about such things.  In the wee hours, that is usually between 2 and 3 am, I often get inspiration in the form of annoying insomnia.  It’s a fairly small price to pay for what occasionally turns out to be a spectacular insight.

So, I’m trying again, Professor True, to convince you to shift your expression ‘Compassion is not consent’ because I think it’s not accurate.  Embedded in the word compassion is consent.  Its etymology is ancient, unlike more modern words like empathy.  But, I already mentioned that in my first failed attempt to persuade.

And, I don’t want to just negate the expression, because I think I understand what is meant and the sentiment behind it.  Instead, I’d like to offer what I think is a more precise phrase in order to refine it.

Consider instead, if you please: “Compassion minus consent.”

Here’s why.

Understanding is based in intellect.  Empathy/sympathy is emotionally-centered.  But compassion comes from the core. I think so far the good professor would agree, because he talks often about the importance of being seated in one’s pelvis, though he uses more colorful expressions for that fact.

I believe these subtle differences in expression have considerable impact and can be used by nefarious powers against the greatest intentions and wills of man.  A couple of examples:

“We are all One” or “We are all in this together” is a kind of bastardization of an absolute truth: Everything is connected.  We live in a holistic system.  I believe this means that in the mind of man is buried the ancestral wisdom of all ages.  I believe this is true because I’ve experienced it personally.  Someday I’ll have the skill to express it.  But I don’t yet.

I believe this is also what NDE (near death experience) is about.  There is an ‘extended consciousness’ realm and I do believe some folks are able to move between these realms (sometimes against their will or comprehension).  We used to call it shamanism and try to cultivate it, now we call it schizophrenia and try to control it.  Professor True has several excellent posts on this topic.

Another example: “All we need is love” or the myriad variations that have bombarded us for several generations through art, film, books, music.  I’ve already said my piece on this a couple of times, so I won’t rehash it again.

I’m all for love and compassion.  I just think to saturate the culture with it or suggest it’s the magic bullet to end our social woes is actually undermining it.  True love and compassion should be earned and dished out sparingly.  Empathy, sympathy, understanding should be extended as far and wide as humanly possible.  Kindness, care and concern should be liberally applied, perhaps even where it’s not deserved.

And compassion, minus consent, is something awesome I could aspire to—I know it won’t be easy—but it seems to me a worthy goal of an enlightened social order.

In any case, these men are totally crushing in this best Apocalypse ever, and are so much more entertaining than this post.  Do something both fun and healthy for yourself on Father’s Day and check them out!

The Wandering Jew & the Lucky Bamboo

The Wandering Jew & The Lucky Bamboo: A Fictional Conspiracy Theory

Do you understand the plants are made just like that? Compare them to the ones that were like, painstakingly crafted?

If you knew there was a difference, would you wonder who crafted it, and how, or even why?

Did you know the sandwhich, the olive, the vodka, were all crafted? Of course you did.

But did you know also was the potato, the tulip, the rose, even the honeybee?

That I hate going to the dentist is no mystery. But in some States, particularly in the South, it seems, sedation is an option. Now I hate going to the dentist slightly less than before, as in all my way too long functional memory. On the gas, there is some enlightenment, as you’ll see.

Twice now I’ve been to the dentist since the Plandemic, because I have dental issues since childhood, not to mention dental trauma, from the choking fluoride treatment molds that tormented me every six months for a decade. That I found these treatments horrific is considered a mental weakness on my part. That my mom paid for them from her hard-earned wages, and trusted them, breaks my heart to this day.

Now they’ve required me to sign a checklist that I have no symptoms of the Covid during these last two visits where only the gas, and lovely company of kind women, guard my fragile acquiescence .

At these days they’ve also insisted on taking my temperature via a digital thermometer directed precisely at my 3rd eye.

That is, the pineal gland. Little do they know, I’m sure, the conspiracy theories that surround that teeny-tiny gland. Right behind the directed laser pointed right there, to which they are given a number, as if that is the only signal that instrument is designed to relate. And as if they would know any other reason why this instrument is now being more normalized than the obscene body scanners at the airport.

I hate dentists, so much so that my latest dentist is my heroine. She gets what honest dentist-hate is like. She commends my stoicism in the chair, bless her heart. I honor her sacrificial hours and delicate sensitivity which I recognize as akin to artistry. She really is someone worthy of far more than her title. I like her, and I’m not being even remotely sarcastic. I can hardly imagine what it’s like to be a woman like that.

“Feelings are considered to be internal human structure and architecture.  But what you imagine and create are far more important—and the creative process radically and naturally changes feelings in a positive way, as a side effect.” Jon Rappaport

On the gas, I reflect, and tears flow, beyond my knowing, how. They are so kind, they see, they don’t define. Are you ok? Yes, I am, right here, right now, I am ok. And I see how flimsy that is this sedated happy feeling in the here and now.

Are you? Are y’all? Is that enough? Is that ok? Do you load yourself with duty and then pray you’ll sleep and have enough still to spend another day?

Would you have enough pity, prana, love, care, energy, to say . . .

Would you really like to know what it was like for me, in the pit, today?

I did not get the impression s/he did. Bypassing is our only call of fame. From the pedestal the pit cannot be understood. There is no degree of compassion that might pacify the pit.

Because you see, in the pit, your compassion is where I most love to shit.

That you preach how I should feel makes it that much more worse
But you praise and anoint yourselves with kudos and more books

It is an annoying block to enlightenment for those who perpetually misunderstand. And are misunderstood.

“If I do not describe the details of our work it is because we were busied with things which lie beyond speech and which therefore elude the spell that words exert. But everyone will remember how his mind has labored in regions which he cannot portray, whether it were in dreams or in deep thought. It seemed as if he were groping for the right road in labyrinths or sought to unravel the figures among the patterns of an optical illusion. And often he awoke wonderfully strengthened. This is where our best work takes place, and so it seemed to us, too, that in our struggle speech was still inadequate, and that we must penetrate into the depths of the dream if we were to withstand the threat against us.”

The cynicism that regards all hero worship as comical is always shadowed by a sense of physical inferiority.” Occulture: The Unseen Forces That Drive Culture Forward by Carl Abrahamsson

Compassion IS Consent

Websters Dictionary, 1905

Definition, Compassion: To suffer

A suffering with another; painful sympathy; a sensation of sorrow excited by the distress or misfortunes of another, pity, commiseration. A mixed passion, compounded of love and sorrow; pain or regret, or is excited by it. Extreme distress of an enemy even changes enmity into at least temporary affection.

Sounds like Stockholm Syndrome to me.  Our virtues are being played against us.

If you’re still believing what you see on TV, you’re addicted to the McDonald’s of the mind.  If so, may I suggest some proper nourishment, in the form of my current favorite philosopher, James True.

I’ve already recommended him on this blog quite a few times.  Now I’m going to attempt to do something he’s asked his subscribers for, which I really respect him for asking to do: “prune my lips.”  Excellent expression and sentiment.

One of Jame’s big schticks is the idea that “compassion is not consent” —he repeats it often and it’s being adopted by others.  It’s gaining traction, and I don’t think that’s a good thing.   

I think it’s like throwing your precious pearls of prana at swine much of the time.  I’m sure there’s a few exceptions, but compassion fatigue is a real thing.

I also think receiving compassion is the favorite sugar donut of tyrants, abusers, criminals and malcontents of all flavors.

Just look at the etymology of the word—to suffer together.  If you are choosing to ‘suffer with’ anyone, you’re giving consent.

When I witness the suffering of another and extend compassion to that individual, or even group, it’s a visceral experience.  I feel it in my gut, it twists in my stomach and moves up my spine and into my heart space, and if I extend it even further it goes right up my chest and lodges as a lump in my throat.  If I extend it even further still, my eyes well up, my lips begin to quiver, and when the tears begin to fall for them, I know we are suffering together.  I hope they are touched by this, that it makes them feel less alone in their suffering, that somehow energetically I’ve lessened their burden just a bit.  It’s expensive, it takes a lot of calories.

John Stoessinger, in his compassionate bestseller, Henry Kissinger: The Anguish of Power (1976), demonstrates his consent of this man’s actions in every chapter.  He makes excuses for him, shows how very ‘human’ he is,  and calls this ‘speaking truth to power.’  He wrote the book because, he says: “I suspect that many of those who later attacked him without mercy might have done so out of their own frustration, bitterness, and disappointment.  What has been sadly lacking, however, is a sense of reality and balance.”

As James and Owen Benjamin agree, the pedestal and the pit both suck, as does Stoessinger: “I have attempted to portray the human being and the statesman behind the myths of accolade and condemnation.”

I wonder, what if Stoessinger would have thrown his pearls of compassion at the millions, perhaps billions, who continue to suffer because of Kissinger’s lifetime of global influence?  I wonder if Kissinger needed his compassion or valued it all that much.  I wonder, by demonstrating how ‘human’ he is, how much compassion for the man moved through his readers like a contagion, building up compassion for the man decade after decade, so that all his misdeeds piled up like good manure in the barn, to be spread over the garden to grow and grow, so that he moves effortlessly between pedestal and pit, achieving his every tyrannical dream in this alchemical process of perpetual re-consenting.

Try this aperture on for size please, gentlemen.  Imagine you are Kissinger, receiving the public’s compassion, what does it feel like for you?  Does it look like dissent to you, or consent?  Would you have the sense your work was approved of, or disapproved of?

Furthermore, would that change much, considering he has an agenda for your life, whether or not you show him compassion?  Why would you extend your compassion to someone who has not demonstrated to you he is suffering?  Do you assume he suffers?  Might it be a common case of : We don’t see others how they really are, we see them how we are? 

Do you think Jesus would’ve washed Kissinger’s feet before or after he stomped all over the world?

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