Thursday, December 17, 2015

Psalm 70

Psalm 70
"Hasten, O God, to save me,
O Lord, come quickly to help me.
May those who seek my life
be put to shame and confusion
may all who desire my ruin
be turned back in disgrace.
May those who say to me, "Aha! Aha!
turn back because of their shame.
But may all who seek you
rejoice and be glad in you;
may those who love your salvation
always say
"Let God be exalted!"
Yet I am poor and needy;
Come quickly to me, O God.
You are my help and my deliverer;
O Lord, do not delay.

Well, that pretty well sums it up. What more need be said. The Psalmist captured my deepest feelings thousands of years ago.  His words are all that are needed this day in the 21st Century. The plight of this man remains the same.  I feel harried, threatened, anxious.  I am forever doing my best and yet feeling there are those with more time and more money and more means and that they will hurt me because they can.  I feel powerless.  I turn to the Lord begging constantly for help to over come the anxiety and fear I experience every day I go to work.
I know that technically this thing might be explained as some kind of post traumatic stress disorder. I might even be called depressed but I think it is more to do with the human condition.  There are forces beyond my control.
I am reading Karen Armstrong's timely text "Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Blood".  It is so far a masterful treatise.
She challenges immediately the simpleton's who ignorantly equate religion with violence.  Violence has always been with man. As a hunter gatherer violence was limited by the resources and the need for the tribes to focus on survival.  Only with the agrarian revolution was man able to develop armies. I love that she says the first real violence was within society.  The 'aristocracy',  meaning 'best' and their hangers on, bureaucrats, judges, advisors , developed armies to subjugate the masses so that some 2% of the society lorded over the rest who principally did the ugly work of raising food and building. Indeed this upper class shunned work. They were warriors but the idea of tilling or labouring or constructing was often beneath them. They preferred to 'administer'.  They also early found that 'organized theft' was the best means of expanding individual and collective wealth.  So lords proceeded from the earliest records of civilization to attack their neighbours and steal.
Theft is what war is all about and everyone is doing it.
I loved Dr. Samual Johnson's great words, paraphrased by Bob Dylan, "Steal a little and they put you in jail, steal a lot and they make you king".
That said, religion, to survive aligned it self with the warriors and rulers.  This goes for Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Paganism and the greatest killer religion of all time, Atheism.
Now within the religions , starting with Zoroastrianism there was this 'guilt' about killing.  That's an interesting development.  This 'reaction' which appears to have resulted in interesting divisions in society and specializations so that the 'killing' could be done by this other group which was at once abhorred but obviously necessary. Because wealth stemmed from the army.  The army was divided later into external and internal army, or army and police because it also served to maintain control.
"The reformer is the enemy of any one who threatens the status quo".  So all of government and society is established to maintain the very forces that ensure the upper classes, that 1- 2% of administrative warriors retained their power.  All banking and all resources are managed to maintain supremacy of the 'ruling elite'.
For the silly and stupid, that means that Obama and Justin Trudeau and all the world leaders are there first and foremost to maintain those who are in power.  In the US these would be foremost Warren Buffet and Bill Gates.  Of course there are the Rothschilds and Rockerfellers but all billionaires have a major investment in maintaining this world as we know it.
Biblically Jesus called this world ruled by Satan.  Herod was the Jewish leader of the day who killed all the children fearing a prophecy saying that a baby would be born. Eventually this local billionaire leader would have John the Baptist beheaded because his girlfriend's daughter wanted this.  Pontus Pilate the Roman Empire leader would allow Jesus eventually be killed as a young man because the religious leaders of his day, who naturally were aligned with the ruling elite, felt he threatened the 'order' of society.  Hence the crucifixion.
Yet 300 years later Constantine, the Roman Emperor caught in an internal struggle noted that the Christians were the best fighters and that their communications. So Constantine had a quickie conversion, and won the battle of Milvian Bridge against Maxentius going on to make Christianity, the state religion. Thus began the Holy Roman Empire and Catholicism which would reign until Martin Luther with the backing of Nationalistic forces of the Protestant cause would begin to decentralize power.
Today, the atheists like to deny that their great atheist oracle Marx and his bench man Lenin created the greatest atheist empire the USSR which promptly killed 60 million and centralized war.
The Chinese atheists under Mao would kill 100 million.
I have never forgotten the great paranoia song of the group Buffalo Springfield with its incredibly brilliant refrain, "Something happening here, what it is aint exactly clear, man with a gun over there say, hey you got to beware, stop hey what's that sound, everybody look what's going down" and "people carrying signs mostly say hoorah for our side."
Now tribalism is the support of 'your group'. Sociopaths are those who will fight and defined their own group within any greater society.  Psychopaths by contrast lack any real empathy and aren't too good at groups. So it follows that for sub cultures the 'hero' is another man's 'terrorist'.
Personally, I like the Aryans. They were the Indo-Caucasian cowboys who moved across India and wrote the Vedas celebrating women, wine, war and cattle stealing. The Celts, the cowboys of Scotland and Ireland and Northern Europe did much the same,  Great warriors and cattle and women thieving.  Later the Indian society separated into the Administrative Brahma religion political class, the warrior class, merchant class, labouring class and slaves.  Prior to this 'warrior specialization' the leadership had focused on being the best killers. A little nation state in Africa has men who do just that even today, maintain their martial skills while the women do all the labour. That group hasn't become civilized to the specialization.
There has been no other successful civilization or empire.  The Khybers and all major political societies today have this history and intrinsic war motif.  The Communists have great armies and sell weapons. The NATO states are the greatest arms dealers and the leaders of the United Nations are all leaders who have been appointed by warrior countries.  Anyone who is not a great war monger is marginal and irrelevant to the powers of the day.  Even Iceland who kicked out it's bankers derived from the great 'organized thieves' of their day, the Vikings.
The Zulus were another group of cowboys.
Cowboys love their cattle.
Warriors are meat eaters. Meat has been rationed throughout history as the most powerful food source for action.  In Scotland the Lords, left overs of the great warrior castes of feudal Europe with its Kings and Queens, own all the fish and edible wildlife.  That's why in Canada today the State is trying to outlaw personal hunting and fishing and is licensing it and taxing it out of reach of the common man.  Indeed vegetarianism has always been encouraged as peasant food with the Irish potato farmers as the classic examples.  The world over, the chicken has been the meat of the people along with lesser fish.
"Guns Germs and Steel" by anthropologist Jared Diamond certainly supports this view of history.
Tribalism, partisanship and behind it all a desire to be home.  We are all walking each other home.  But the glory and the fight and the world of war is alike to sex and orgasm, hence 'all's fair in love and war'.  The two passions of all men.
And the denial. The people who say they don't like war.  They are commonly the 'effete' who detest the soldiers but love the power and wealth that they bring. They are the girls like Canada's protest singer who wrote "Universal Soldier' blaming the soldier. But she may as well have blamed Eva Brawn, Hitler's girlfriend because the girls are the ones who celebrate most the 'returning warrior'. Matriarchies have all been warrior societies and celebrated the wealth the warrior brings.
Krishna said to Arjuna, there will always be war and the war will always be between family members so the only real question is whether you will be in it or not.
So the poverty saints, like St. Francis and others have recognized that without war you can have poverty but with poverty you can still have God because God is truly universal where as Ferrari's unfortunately are not.  Neither is Chanel.
I fear even saying these truths because the evolutionary biologists have said that we have developed our human big brain for the purpose of 'deceit'.  Only by deception did little men kill saber toothed tigers.
I believe this is the truth and I believe the Psalmist called on God because he too was a truth teller.  And every one knows 'he is a fool who cannot conceal his wisdom'.  No religion is truly a 'religion of peace'.  So if you believe Islam is then I have some great swamp land to sell you.  The Klu Klux Klan by their few numbers are clearly less aligned with the major forces of war than Buddhists, Christians or Atheists.  Their 'meme' isn't nearly as duplicitous as that which all major religions can purport to provide.  Support for the warrior 'ruling elite' and 'solace for the losers'.  As Neitze said there are 'supermen' and 'slaves'.  A good religion is good for all but doesn't rock the boat.
But religion doesn't cause war.  Greed and power seeking and lust cause war.  It's a male and female thing. It's a very human thing.
So I'm still thinking that Peace is an elusive butterfly and Love conquers but not in some simple stupid way.  Faith surpasses fear but only with discipline and training. It is natural to be afraid if alone because only together has man and woman been able to face the foe.

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