Deeply Political Acts

That’s what Natalie Goldberg calls writing, in WRITING DOWN THE BONES.  I think all art, all creation, is like that- because to truthfully be in your situation and describe it so that another person understands it is to be both deeply private and completely exposed.   If anyone’s paying attention, that is.

We’re again enveloped in smoke, surrounded by fire;  it is as grimy out here under your collar as a result as in downtown Manhattan.    Meanwhile in the Never Ending Quest for Some Sort of Equilibrium,  we’re wondering about the difference between not abandoning oneself and unnecessarily resisting the movement of time and events.  How do you decide which sacrifices are worth making, in short?  How far away does the challenge of staying alive take you from who and what you really are?  What must you have?  What can you do without? Can a person survive that way?  And can a person keep writing that way?

Meanwhile, as a person of female-ness, a woman, I find myself ever more shocked and dismayed at what’s going on in the world and here in You Know Where.  Woman are not objects, not beasts of burden, not lower than man, not here solely for reproductive purposes.  No, and especially not when those reproductive purposes seem so often destined to be used for the all important goal of provision of constant cannon fodder.   In this picture, women have no control over anything, keep having offspring, and those offspring get sent off to fight.  And die, and get maimed and made crazy. But the world is made safe for Kings and Emperors and Oil Companies.

I find myself very curious indeed about the relative dearth of  sensible feminine input on these particular topics politically in this country.  Maybe we’re all  stunned by this very real assault on every piece of us (physical! emotional! financial!) after we’d (at least *I*) thought that those basic things were handled and we could move on to the next item of importance.  But, no.  We’re back to the stone age, apparently.  Where are the women standing up to their “representatives” and saying, uh, you know?  Perhaps you should go back to school and review EVERYTHING especially biology.   Ethics is probably beyond you, but…..try throwing in some basic math too, so you’ll get the concept of Equal Pay for Equal Work, even though that is probably Reading Ahead.

Seriously though.  Every time I see one of these women like, say, Condoleeza Rice? I wonder just what in the hell she’s thinking.  We know someone like Michelle Bachmann, or Sarah Palin, probably has a thought process that would be largely unrecognizable as such.  But Rice doesn’t seem like a total dummy and I am stumped as to how she can be part of a political machine that thinks…well, for one thing, thinks the word Rape has several different meanings.  Not to mention an extraordinary interpretation of human reproduction.  And also pretty much has as truth that woman are lesser beings than men.   Oh, of course SOME of them can make something out of themselves but for the most part?  Let’s just move ahead with passing all those laws that will make women criminals if a pregnancy terminates and they can’t prove it was an act of God. Resisting one of those intravaginal probes could be criminal behavior, too.  Those women, they don’t know any better, right?  It’s quite confusing, really.

So this scares and angers me, of course.  I’ve always had a thorough going sense that nobody was intrinsically better than anybody else,  and operating out of willful ignorance creates pretty much of a no fly zone, as we can see every day if we look.  Writing about it probably IS a political act; the personal is after all political.   But how much change can that effect? Is it important?   Ultimately I think it is.  If you don’t stand up and say, jeesh, DUDE YOU HAVE NO CLOTHES ON to the Emperor, think of the health care costs of taking care of him after he catches his death of cold.  Best to do the work as you go along, even though some times that is almost impossibly hard.  We become convinced of so many things in life, and many of those things are neither true nor good for us.  It is also, however, quite the endeavor to divest oneself of those limiting things, and tell the truth as we see it in a way that helps people without getting us in some kind of awful hot water mess.

It becomes a matter of actually listening, don’t you think?  When you see something, hear something, that you know is going to inflict pain and suffering on someone that really isn’t any of your business to be contributing to, shouldn’t your action be to moderate that thing, stop the damage?  This counteracts the early training to fit in, be good, and especially if you’re female just be quiet.  Seen, not heard.  All that stuff.   Don’t think about the facts, just accept the received wisdom.  But really.  When that very “received wisdom” is about something that you KNOW is not true, not right, such as just about everything we’re hearing in politics now (pick a topic, any topic!), don’t you think we all have an obligation to show up, be present, and do that deeply political act of coming from love and not fear?  Fear makes us want to control things and the fact is we can’t even really control ourselves too far.  Love sees solutions, sees a bigger picture, and I think we can say that love, for sure, knows that no rape is ever anything but violent and unwanted.  This goes for every being, every inch of land, ounce of air, every drop of water.  The political act of writing may be about avoiding the rape of the mind, and in that case it IS rather important.  Knowledge is power, and part of that power comes from reclaiming what has always been one’s own- one’s own heart and mind and soul.  In the end that isn’t a silent process and it isn’t one we can do completely alone.  We may have to write about it, actually.

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One response to this post.

  1. I didnt seek this, but I enjoyed this, found it entertaining! Keep up the excellent work!

    Reply

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