“Mother, shall I trust the government?” ~ Pink Floyd, The Wall
There’s been a great deal of criticism and distrust of the “government,” and grumbling about limitations on our rights.
The government is not our enemy, even though there appears to be a great gulf between “us” and “them.” The government (or any corporation, of which government is simply one type) is a group of people (a gang) who each have a history, culture and values, just like “us.” We the people ARE the government, we hold ultimate power and control over the people in government through our compliance or lack of compliance with policies and procedures that sanction certain behaviors and describe what is a “right” in a court of law.
In spite of what the Constitution or the United Nations Declaration of Universal Human Rights say, some of our “inalienable rights” are recognized and enforced by government monopoly on the use of violence, and some are not, as a matter of policy. What’s missing in the current political conversation is the definition of RIGHT RELATIONSHIP that is far more inclusive than the battle over right and wrong.
It is far more effective to skip the argument about rights and admit that we have Universal Human Needs that are not being met. We all have needs for empathy, forgiveness, mutual respect and collaboration regardless of what gang to which we may belong.
In right relationships, the welfare of the whole global social system of the human species is not more or less important than the welfare of the individual. They are equal, inextricably woven together and our survival literally depends on recognition of that concept. Pain, suffering, and grief are regarded as sources of valuable information for the healing of the entire society. There are no enemies, only potential partners. There is no violence, vengeance or punishment, there is only restoration of authentic, honest, from the heart, relationship.
Right relationship between gangs begins with the definition of what needs we share in common, a dissolution of divisive boundaries and sharing imaginative questions about what learning could take place next. What I see currently is the media-consuming public learning something about where to place their trust in situations that appear to be out of control.
Increasing our level of trust in each other and trust in the process of struggle to identify and then relax the command-and-control structure of the ego is definitely an expansion of right relationship. It has long been my contention that the struggle to change the world and the struggle to change ourselves are one and the same, are interdependent, and occur simultaneously.
We all share histories of physical, emotional and spiritual wounding. We are the walking wounded, no matter our gang identity. Learning to trust means identifying and letting go the trauma and grief which trigger knee-jerk reactions instead of thoughtful and creative, healing responses. Learning to trust allows a natural flow of creative, empathic responses that are not ambitiously aimed at specific outcomes. Learning to trust is a personal behavior that is the only, necessary and sufficient embodiment of planetary health and peace.
This kind of personal learning is more contagious than any virus. It is social learning, and if you are open to witnessing it in the media you consume, you will see it happening right now. We are far more connected to each other than we can possibly imagine.
All other logical-analytical, political-leader-follower efforts to plan a path to world health and survival are ultimately doomed to failure if they do not contain this equanimity, this emptying of ourselves into extravagant generosity of heart and spirit.
We are one humanity, we need each other without exception, and harmony is our destiny. May this day and all your days be guided by this commitment.