Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Occupy Wall St./Grains of Sand

There's an Occupy Wall St. function happening downtown. I just got back from checking in with them on my way home from some friends' place. I didn't really want to go as I wasn't (and still am not, as i've not yet read the nice pamphlet i received) sure what they're all about, and I don't want to go all willy-nilly just joining up, underinformed, in demonstrations (i'd protest that technique!). Really, I felt compelled to check in because I was afraid that there might be some angry person, holding a sign in the cold nighttime rain, motivated mostly by rage and a feeling of insignificance in the world, and I couldn't just drive by without making the effort to get in there and offer companionship, a hand, an ear, some conversation - whatever made sense and felt like neighborly love, when I got there.

I'm happy to report that OF THE 10 PEOPLE STANDING IN SOLIDARITY, ALL SEEMED TO BE CALM - CHEERFUL, EVEN: I see this as agreeable evidence for the Franklian hypothesis that working for a purpose is what makes a life happy/rich; The Occupiers seem to've found VOICE AND COMMUNITY in their efforts, and their good spirits and smiles, bright through the cold rain of the evening, suggest that this camaraderie really is more satisfying and motivating than greed (as evidenced through their enjoyment of their companions, in preference to bitter singularity of mind about the injustice of the situation that spurred them.)

Bless them, they're rich. How well do they know it?

There was another hard problem brought to light as well - those riding by in new trucks and luxury sedans, persons whose youth betrays their ability to've "earned" and purchased these vehicles through "jobs" they've worked themselves (probably), yelling things like "Capitalism!" ("rocks" is implied, i guess) and "Get a job!". Thankfully, there weren't many of these Jokers (to borrow a friend's euphemism), but they are a relevant part of the scene. For utilitarian reasons, i hope they felt dumb and confused when they heard what they'd barked, but I'm not angry with them, as chances are they "know little what they do," and hopefully the confusion as to why the antagonism didn't fill their hearts with satisfaction will inspire them to search their souls for a harmonic answer. In attempt to be a good neighbor/blogger, I'll explain why the heckle is unfulfilling, in case anyone reading is interested: THE FACT THAT THE HECKLE "GET A JOB" OCCURRED PROVES THAT THE PERSON BEING HECKLED IS DOING A JOB: the job is raising awareness, and the heckle wouldn't've occurred if awareness hadn't been raised. Simple. Yet elusive nonetheless. This is why that heckle can't be satisfying - it's delusion. 

If we follow this line a little further, we also come upon this gem (which eventually ends up diluting Occupy's cause, which I'll treat a bit later in this post): work is seen to necessitate attention to its purpose, generally thought of as the result of a task's completion. To complete a task, one must become acquainted with the spiritual aspect of work - judgement - actions are determined to be more or less beneficial to the present goal and choices are made about what to pursue and what to avoid. It is at this stage of judgement that something very subtle and magical happens, something that can often go long unnoticed: a doubling-back to contemplation of the purpose of the work requires a value judgement of the purpose of the WORK ITSELF, not as an end to be met, BUT AS AN IMPORTANT AND MEANINGFUL SET OF ACTIONS TO PERFORM. Yes, these actions are often motivated by end goals but, to achieve any end, we must accept the means; Simply put: THE QUIET MEANING OF WORK IS TO TEACH US WHAT WE CONSIDER VALUABLE AND WORTHWHILE WAYS TO SPEND OUR TIME: we learn, to borrow another common phrase: "how far we're willing to go," and how close those lengths are to our psyches.

Hence, we experience a taste of spiritual awareness in this quest for compatibility of desire and action. As this awareness develops, the same technique used to evaluate the efficiency of accomplishing work is applied to personal concepts not often thought of as "work," like Ethics or diet, and a sense of Self coheres, as does, eventually, a sense of Other I beyond which little else is desired than what is needed to survive (all action at this point becomes a sort of Art). What is desired beyond peace can only be greed. Peace is the end to which all activity strives - be it an antagonistic heckle, or a prolonged struggle for an end to human rights abuses of others. Greed, in itself need not be feared however - the desire which inspires greed is an innate human characteristic, responsible for many of the "good" works done in the world - when the greed is for communication.

So I believe in the right for people to assemble and discuss - even "hate groups," because honesty is the only way to come to Presence with/for oneself, and become alive, and become involved. The dead don't negotiate, and neither does "karma" (Mystery), so this is really an individual-mental-health-peace issue. (This motion/area is something i'm VERY interested in, as it relates to perception/faith/feelings/ALL: my heartmind tells me that this area is the home of God - the general vicinity where people learn to "let go"/to "trust"/be faithful/relinquish the obsession of judging others; this is the place where salvation is born to be nurtured (as Art/Life), or where a soul and journey freeze (Dante, anyone?).


All that said, I do find Wall St. is sketchy: mostly because I am skeptical of interest rates, imaginary money, and other things like that - I've watched the Zeitgeist movies (which are quite thought-provoking/mind-blowing, see: long segment about moneyshort segment about money); I also STRONGLY AGREE WITH THIS ARTICLE which coherently explains why "HORMONALLY-DRIVEN YOUNG MEN SHOULD NOT BE LEFT ALONE IN CHARGE OF OUR FINANCES".

Yet, not only despite but, in my view, because of these troubling situations, I'M FAITHFUL THAT OUR GLOBAL SOCIETY IS ALWAYS MOVING TOWARD SUSTAINABILITY, RESPECTFULNESS, AND PEACE. (I like to think of society as a marble sculpture in progress).


I'm glad i went, and now MUST get to bed. Tired. Work in the morning. Sorry if it's a little sloppy, but i think it'll do (this post, and maybe my work tomorrow, too :P)

Best wishes, friends.
(*this is parking-related because i talked about work with a homeless guy i see around a lot while i was down there, AND the demonstration is basically in my office, assuming i have an office. if i do, the demonstration's there.)

Good night. Sweet dreams.
Good morning. Be you. And be sweet if possible. We're delicate.
Oh, the grains of sand: Gandhi said that a even a grain of sand can stop the mightiest machine, if there are enough of them (or something like that - it's inspiring for me, and it seems to apply).
 "there can be no social change without spiritual change first" - swami vivekananda

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