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"What’s happening within myself and others, is we’ve had enough. There are better ways for a society to be, to co-exist peacefully among ourselves. We need a Revolution, but we do not need the invention of another grotesque machine like the guillotine, but we need an inner revolution."
The French Revolution was a bloody bloodbath, but it came as a result of the elite and wealthy spending all of the taxes on excess (amongst other things). According to Woloch (1982, p. 332) it was a time of the monarchy that was “tarnished by previous political conflicts and false starts towards reform.” Does that sound familiar? For an Australian under what feels like an autocracy, sometimes it feels like we are constantly under the leadership of ego-centred men who cater only to the wealthy and corporate interests while ordinary Australians are yoked under more and more restrictive policies. For example, NSW is now proposing bicycle licences and there are talks about banning weekend markets! How much more ridiculous can you get!? Woloch goes onto say “there seemed to be no way to forge a consensus, no mechanisms or institutions to harmonise diverse viewpoints.” The Right and the Left are becoming so distant from each other that we can no longer have rational discussions about issues that affect all of us. There seems to be an attitude of “you’re either with us or against us” and anyone who views things differently will now fall under the latest wave of “terrorism” laws.
I didn’t want this blog to be about politics, but I can’t help drawing similarities between Australia in 2016 and the period leading up to both the French Revolution and Nazi Germany. The increasingly absolutist (complete and unrestricted power) philosophies and censorship in modern Australia mirrors that of pre-Revolutionary France and Nazi Germany. Our leaders no longer listen to rational debate and are armed with a full marketing team, including cyber-trolls to specifically target groups and individuals that oppose them and their viewpoint. I suspect similar things are happening in other countries (again, very Nazi Germany).
Back to today, what I find is happening within myself is that I am no longer willing to accept the status quo, I am no longer willing to accept that children and innocent people who were seeking asylum, imprisoned on an island with their complete loss of Human Rights, all for what? They are pawns in a messy political game. I am no longer willing to allow the damage and destruction of global environmental treasures like the Great Barrier Reef, the Kimberleys, Tasmanian Wilderness and Uluru and our underground water supply for short-term financial gain. I am no longer willing to accept that politicians know what the best educational outcomes for children are…teachers are, parents are, the kids themselves are. I am sick of the racist, homophobic, misogynistic rantings by people who have no idea the damage they do to other people by their rhetoric (yes, Donald Trump and Tony Abbott, I’m talking about you), I’m sick of the Arts/Education/Health/Disability funding to be ripped from the people who most need it and funnelled into the giant war machine that is completely driven by Washington…and so it goes.
Protesting is not working, media outlets just aren’t covering the massive protests, writing letters and signing online petitions doesn’t work, you end up getting a stock-standard letter from your local member telling you how they are investigating it – letters to placate you and treat you like your voice is not important because they know best. Sticking your head in the sand and saying “I don’t mind the government having all my details, because I’ve done nothing wrong” just makes them take and take more. So what can we do? A friend of mine said the other day: “Love the ones you’re with and share information,” and I think she’s right. I think that’s the key.
What’s happening within myself and others, is we’ve had enough. There are better ways for a society to be, to co-exist peacefully among ourselves. We need a Revolution, but we do not need the invention of another grotesque machine like the guillotine, but we need an inner revolution. Hurt people, hurt people. And, increasingly, I’m thinking we don’t need absolute leaders. The leadership model is flawed. I am no expert on gardening, I don’t wish to be, but I know plenty of people who are passionate about gardening who I can learn from. I am no expert on how to design and build homes, but there are plenty of people who do. We need a revolution of society, of how we do things about how we exist, the way we consume like ravenous beasts across this finite living planet.
I think firstly that we should continue to protest, write letters, sign petitions, but we also have a massive resource at our fingertips. The Internet. Whilst there is some censorship, there are heaps of hackers who know how to get around the security. The internet is an amazing way to connect with like-minded beings, but also people who are unaware of the way we are being manipulated. I will not be manipulated anymore and I certainly don’t want others to be manipulated by the ego.
Secondly, I think we need to vision a world we do want. One where people feel heard and not like herded cattle in an abattoir (yes, I’m talking to you Ikea, Bunnings and Woolworths), one where people feel some control of their lives, not at the mercy of money (or lack thereof), or some sort of permission to do anything from the State. The models for education, health and politics aren’t working and the people who are leaving these systems are the most likely to create a change. We need a revolution from within and re-create the services in a way which is beneficial to all, not just the few. We need to create a world where we live in harmony with the environment, not try to dominate it from an ego-centred viewpoint.
I think we need to treat others how we would like the world to be. For me that means, despite my fundamental opposition to their politics and religion, I need to love the beings I disagree with, that includes the trolls. I also think, that for my mental health and sanity, I need to withdraw my energy from the world I don’t want and channel it into the world I do want. I don’t want to stop talking about, writing letters, or sharing the issues that matter on my social media, but I do need to share more of the sustainable, community driven initiatives that are out there and more importantly, be a more active part of them.
And finally, I need to believe that if everyone took responsibility for their own personal issues, their inner woundings, their hurt, their ego and sat in the beauty of their own divinity, of their own wonder, we wouldn’t need absolute leaders, because we would all be being authentically ourselves by bringing our gifts to the world. May you live authentically and be the most amazing you, you can be because that’s the sort of revolution that can bring about real and lasting change and more importantly, heads don’t have to be severed from necks. The world changes, when we do.
©Alyssa Curtayne 2016
Reference: Woloch, I., 1982, Eighteenth Century Europe: Tradition and Progress, 1715-1789, Norton, New York.
All images, videos, products and texts Copyright ©Alyssa Curtayne 2014-2017