Contributing writer for Wake Up World
"Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you." ~ Pericles
The Political Bottom Line
Everything is political, but firstly it's biological. This is the concept behind my recent article on biological oligarchical collectivism. It's simply a swift way of saying that, whether realized or not, our lives are influenced by politics, local and international, past and present -- but no matter how important this is to understand, it is even more important to understand that despite the insidious infiltration of politics into every strata of human existence, we are still biological beings. No matter one's political tendencies or ideologies, we need clean air and water and quality food in order to even begin to contemplate political and social objectives, let alone participate in the world.
Politics permeates everything in society. Politics is something we are immersed in. The people of Flint, Michigan, who cannot drink politics, realize this most directly. We are biological beings firstly, before we are social and political beings. It is only the rhetoric of government and corporations that leads us to prioritize our lives otherwise.
All the politicized, institutionalized, mechanized interaction between individuals and institutions stem from psychological and biological reasons and responses. Sometimes we may not understand our own biological reasons and responses because we live under the limits of our biology, using it to understand it. And yet we know it to be true from observation and experience. It is our biological fear response, for example, that is exploited by government for the political gains of war.
Indeed, every political problem stems from ingrained biological responses and, judging from the continuous institutional war on individualism and destruction of Earth mother, perhaps deep psychological pathology.Political, Biological" Spiritual
As I said, everything is political but firstly biological" and originally, it is spiritual. Despite our deep primordial connection to the Earth, animals, plants, each other, the seasons, planetary bodies, and forces of the universe far greater than ourselves, the postmodern collective has gone astray, lacking spirituality, left hungry and distracted by the mechanics of institutional imperialism.
Many individuals, despite their spiritual origins and political predicament, never comprehend the spiritual or political stratum of existence. Many consider little beyond their biological needs. And this apathy to realms of reality beyond physical attainment, is the biggest problem we face, with the greatest shielding. The encroachment of politics on our biological and spiritual lives, and the majority's apathy to it, is an unyielding dynamic in our society. This apathy to the actions of government actually perpetuates the problem, helping to embed the prioritization of political and corporate motives over our biological and primordial/spiritual needs as the status quo.
No matter the particular variation of government, this kind of politics eventually degrades to oligarchical collectivism -- which serves only those in power -- and ultimately, into biological oligarchical collectivism, which threatens our biological wellbeing in the process.
(For more on biological oligarchical collectivism, please see my recent article, Oligarchical Collectivism: The Institutional "ism" That Threatens Our Very Biology, or simply consider the politics that led to the ongoing health crisis in Flint, Michigan.)What Would Jesus Do?
What is the solution? Well, let's see" What would Jesus do? Now I don't ask this in the Bible-pushing, monotheistic way that you might be accustomed to hearing. In fact, I openly reject monotheism -- the religious doctrine that there is only one true "God" -- as a form of institutionalization. Rather, I ask the question "What would Jesus do?" as a spiritual human who, like the Jesus archetype, appreciates the value of individuals and not institutions.
The bible's Cleansing of the Temple narrative tells of Jesus expelling the merchants and money-changers from the Temple, accusing them of turning the Temple into a den of thieves, and declaring "My house shall be a house of prayer." He went through an intense process of self-development and refinement. He became a teacher and healer, challenging the prevailing morality. Sound familiar?
The story of Jesus offers the solution to the problem of institutionalization we face today: the millennia-old dilemma of oligarchical collectivism, of prioritizing commercial over spiritual interests. Today, this is the political bottom line. No matter what is going on in the world, no matter the political agenda being pushed, we must perform the inner-work to develop and define our own consciousness. Refinement and healing of the Self is the first step toward individuation, which is the first step to being an empowered individual among power-seeking institutions" which is the first step toward changing the political bottom line. The next step is to teach and, when possible, contribute to healing others. As Jesus demonstrated, after one heals, one forgives and heals others. But we can only find this ability if firstly we have found healing for our Self.
At the Last Supper, as the story goes, Jesus told his disciples to remember his death. Yes, despite his apparently miraculous birth, Jesus told his closest friends, the night before he passed, to remember how he left this world rather than how he arrived -- to remember his legacy of spiritual achievements, not his (miraculous) biological inheritance. Jesus developed himself and then focused on teaching and healing, as well as confronting the "den of thieves" -- the political and commercial profiteers of his day. He confronted and called out the money changers and merchants, and the militaristic authorities, and re-asserted the value of spirituality. However the oligarchical power-seekers collectivized and subverted the spiritual aspects he advocated -- and this was the final straw for Jesus.