I occupy a space, I inhabit myself. I live here, occupying myself. We live here, together, occupied. The somewhat compulsive quality of our active self occupation has maybe caused our occupation of this planet to bring to mind 'conquest', the way nations have occupied nations, the way we've colonized our territories, in the past. It is funny, you know, we' are one species, people, sharing one contained form, in this case, a sphere- but there lingers in the air a sense of having conquered ourselves, dominating; we've become defeated.

For what purpose?

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Comment by Mark E. Smith on June 3, 2012 at 2:14am

I think I can relate to some of what Shikha and C.A. are saying.

Among indigenous people, the word "occupy" has such tragic connotations that there have been attempts to rebrand the Occupy movement as "Unoccupy," which would be less militant and colonialist.

While I would never welcome depression or despair, I think both are normal and natural reactions to tragedies, and should not be condemned but respected and empathized with so that they can be worked through and transcended.

The old Newtonian law of physics that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, seems to hold true in human interactions as well. Contrary to what some positivists claim, I don't believe that thinking I deserve prosperity will bring it to me--I believe the opposite, that the more I want it, the less likely I am to get it. Fortunately for me, that's not one of my goals.

Of the things you list, C.A., I like the words evolution, revolution, change, and building the new. But I'm uncomfortable with tearing down the old, as I prefer that we just stop supporting it and let if fail and fall of its own accord. I'm also uncomfortable with putting the crooks in jail, as we already have the biggest prison system in the world and it hasn't seemed to accomplish much. I'd prefer that crooks be ostracized and shunned until and unless they apologize and make full restitution to their victims.

I also don't feel comfortable with the word reform. For that to work, the original system has to have been a good one, been corrupted, and therefore be capable of being restored to its originally good nature. Our capitalist imperialist system, as far as I can tell, was never benevolent, and therefore cannot be restored to a benevolence it never had. And I think that trying to defeat things just develops into continuing conflicts. I think conflicts have to be resolved.

I do think that there are teachers to renew the earth. I consider the Zapatistas to be one example of teachers showing the way to renew the earth. There are many others, such as permaculturists, anarchists, and peace activists, who have been trying to teach us that everything doesn't have to be hierarchy and conflict. But those who believe that hierarchy and conflict are the way things were meant to be will always try to suppress and prevent change, so the struggle for global justice really is a struggle.

Comment by Mark E. Smith on June 3, 2012 at 1:42pm

I don't see the US as a proving ground for anything, C.A. In my view it was just a transfer of imperialism from Europe to the US, and things continued as before, though under a new mask. I do agree that our teachers are the ones we've been suppressing.

Comment by Mark E. Smith on June 12, 2012 at 12:17am

I doubt if we men, we Occupiers, we citizens, we elders, we spiritualists, or any other "we" that some of us may identify with, can help fix things, C.A., because when we think in terms of us, it implies a them.

There was an amazing Tweet by the amazing poet Mark Gonzales yesterday. On the topic of 'Where are you from?' he wrote: "Somewhere between indigenous and indigo."

The topic was because the question of where people are from is often used as a form of racism, to label people, put them in their place, and try to keep them there. The focus should always be on who we're becoming and where we're going. I think our ability to communicate will be greatly enhanced when we can stop thinking and saying that we're men or women, young or old, one nationality or another, etc., and become people. There will only be peace when "we" includes everyone. We are the people!


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