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Youth Organizing

Reflections from Behind the Wall

A friend who focuses on youth organizing asked me if I would share some of my thoughts with those who are organizing. Below you will find the piece that I have sent to them. Thought you might find it interesting.


Chuck TurnerOne of the youth organizers recently brought me up to date on the campaigns being carried out by the youth of Boston. It was both very encouraging as well as exciting news not only to see injustices being challenged but also to see young people developing their skills at improving the quality of life. To see those in their teens and twenties building and implementing campaigns to improve the society warms my heart as well as makes me optimistic for our future.

I understand how easy it is for those who desire a just, equitable, and humane society to be demoralized by the corruption, immorality, and injustice that we see being practiced at all levels in this country. However, we have to keep in mind, the roots of the philosophy and practices of our country. We must remember America's War for Independence was fought in behalf of freedom for some and oppression for others. We must never forget that the Constitution, the fundamental law of this country, gave the right of citizenship only to rich white males. Therefore we should not be surprised at the economic and political control of the one percent. The fruit of the tree is the product of its roots.

The Constitution established a power base for the one percent. It gave the one percent the power to create a military establishment in order to protect their wealth from the demands of the ninety-nine percent; expand their control across the continent; drive the original inhabitants into concentration camps called reservations; and exploit the resources of other countries. In addition, the Constitution legitimized the slavery of Africans, robbing them of their freedom, labor and humanity. It deprived white women and white men without property of any voice in the operation of the government. The Constitution established a democracy for rich, white males Only.

The right to vote, despite ongoing attacks and continual attempts to undermine, has been expanded on paper into universal suffrage. Economic power in this country, however, has been kept in the hands of the one percent. Federal legislation has assured that the workers of this country have less rights to protect against the exploitation of their labor than the workers of any other western country. Women are still struggling for equal pay for equal work. Blacks and Latinos are submerged at the bottom of the economic melting pot. Overseeing America's economic structural inequality is a Congress where 250 of the 534 members are millionaires.

Despite the fact that the incarceration of Americans have quintupled (risen 500%) over the last forty years, from 400,000 to 2.3 million including 1.3 million blacks, not one investment bank president or high level bank official has gone to jail despite Wall Street's acknowledged engineering of the 2007-2008 financial crisis that led to the greatest economic disaster in this country since the Depression. Prosecutorial misconduct has led to this country having the highest percentage in the world of its population and people of color incarcerated. Yet, the one percent rarely are prosecuted and even more rarely go to jail despite their criminal activity.

I cite these facts not to depress you but to impress upon your minds the fact that the corruption that we see in this country is rooted in the beliefs of its "Founding Fathers". The Recovery Movement affirms that recovery from an addiction can not begin until those addicted move beyond denial. Similarly, we can not begin to build a country which future generations can be proud of and feel safe and secure within until we acknowledge and eliminate from the American psyche the roots of the disease that is ravaging this country.

The greed and corruption of the one percent is rooted in a belief system based on the principle that "Might makes right". It grows out of the belief that there is no moral law mandating just, fair, and respectful treatment for all. It is based on a moral cancer that asserts that some, based on race, ethnicity, gender, education, class, sexual preference, etc., have the right to control as well as oppress others.

The question for all of us, especially those of you just entering adulthood, is what do we do. The first step for you is to continue doing what George indicates you are doing very well. That is, change does not come from talking about a problem. Talk is cheap. It is only action that can stop injustice from growing. Therefore, given the rampant growth of injustice in this country, you need collectively use your daily experiences to identify the patterns of injustices and organize not only to stem their growth but also to pull them out by their roots. This process requires you to focus not only on the problems afflicting "your group" but also the problems others are struggling against in order to widen the circle of change.

Your second objective as the newest generation of "freedom fighters" is to build the political power of your age group. Young people have the lowest voting percentage of all age groups. As the activist/organizers of your generation you have not only a significant opportunity but also a significant responsibility to change that picture by organizing and mobilizing your generation's political power to be strategically used as a tool to reinforce the power of your organizing objectives.

Despite the power of the one percent over the electoral process, the strategic focus of a conscious electorate can be a potent tool for change as the civil rights movement of the sixties, the women's movement of the seventies, the environmental movement in the eighties, and every successful movement of change has proved. Politics should be viewed and used as a key weapon in our arsenal.

Our long run objective, I believe, is not just to force the one percent to engage in humane and just behavior nor to just spread the benefits of materialism. The healthy development of this country and our future generations demands that we establish a new way of life, both governmental and economic, built on principles of cooperation and respect for the divine creativity of each and every human being. We must build the consciousness from the ground up that civic and personal morality--the just treatment of others--is the required of us individually and collectively.

While there is ongoing debate regarding the existence of and the nature of God, I believe that from a scientific standpoint, it is impossible to deny that their is an Divine Intelligence, an Ultimate Reality, that created and is shaping the universe and all its life forms, including human beings. The advances of sciences demonstrates the work and the existence of this Supreme Intelligence in innumerable ways. How can the distinct and differentiating DNA code in each and every human being be explained, other than through a Creative Intelligence.

How can you explain the systematic organization through the periodic table of the chemicals composing the earth and all its material forms including the human body without acknowledging the existence of a Creative Intelligence. What possible explanation can there be for the Fibonacci numerical sequence, with its internal ratio of 1.618 defining a Devine Proportion that is reflected throughout nature as well as the human body. However, even if you don't believe in a Divine Intelligence, logic demands that if our goal is to create a just and humane democratic practice on all levels within this country, cooperation with and respect for each and every individual has to be its underlying principle.

Given the power of the one percent and those within the 99% who believe in their philosophy, how do we create a new way of life, you ask? The challenge is formidable but the starting point is clear. Those of us who believe that a new way of life is needed; those of us who understand that experience shows us that we can not look to the one percent to feed, cloth, and house us; those of us who understand that future generations must be able to build on a principled foundation of respect for and cooperation with all on every level of society; those of us who have that understanding must begin to transform ourselves and our lives into that new reality.

Yes, I know that is easy to say but a daunting challenge. However, if we have a vision for the future that includes us, why should its creation begin with our transforming ourselves into that vision. It's a show and tell world. It is reasonable, from my perspective, that those of us who seek a just world should mirror that world in our own individual and collective lives. Ss the old saying goes, "A journey of a 1000 miles on foot begins with the first step. If our goal is to transform America, then the logical place to begin is on the transformation of ourselves.

Take the first step. Examine yourself and your life. Does your life reflect the principles of cooperation on all levels and an internal belief in as well as external display of respect for all, regardless of all the "isms" that so effectively divide us in this country and world. That is where the work for each of us must begin. That is just the first step. The second is to ask yourself if you have discovered in yourself the gifts and talents that can contribute to the building of a better world.

The Divine Intelligence, the Logic of Nature, or the Material Reality if you prefer has given each of us gifts to play our part in the creation of a just and harmonious society. Yes, we all need to be able to provide for ourselves and families but that is not sufficient for the fulfillment of the Plan. Each of us have been designed (our DNA makes that clear) as creative beings with potential for creativity that can enhance not only our lives but the lives of others. Have we discovered our gifts and if we have are we working on their manifestation. Have you begun to develop yourself to play your role in the creation of a New Reality.

From my perspective the most difficult challenge facing those of us who recognize the need for a new way of life is pierce the one percent's ideological veil. To justify their oligarchic power and control, their educational system had to create a mental and psychological framework that made their control seem not only justified but also a necessity. Mental and psychological submission is the objective of every oppressor.

To create the necessary psychological submission within the mind of the ninety-nine percent, the educational system of the one percent fostered the concept of Anglo-Saxonism (look it up in the dictionary) based on the belief in the natural superiority of the Anglo-Saxon (English) people. It preserved mythology of the superiority of the male over the female. It perpetuated the thought that those who had wealth had more value than those who had to work for a living. To justify the concept of white supremacy, it virtually erased the history of Africa preslavery and South America, precolonization.

This reordering of human and historical reality was essential to the perpetuation of the power and control of the one percent in the past as well as the present. It created and creates a psychological climate designed to mentally and emotionally emasculate those it sought and seeks to control. America's educational system was and continues to be designed to reinforce the idea of the natural superiority of the one percent. Psychological submission through mind control is their ultimate power. The irony is that many if not most of the "Founding Fathers" were members of the Masonic Order based on principles that undercut much of the one percent's ideology. In fact, every President except Kennedy was a Mason (not sure about President Obama).

I am sure the question you're asking is how do I do that. How can I strip what has been implanted in my mind and emotions--what is perhaps embedded in my belief system. Again, the process begins with a self examination. Explore your internal computer, your memory bank. Think about the first time you heard negative things being said in school about your race, about your gender, about your class, etc. Think about when you heard the negativity from those around you; from within your family. Think about how it effected you then and whether those things that you heard then are still influencing the way you see yourself and the world now. That is the first step in the cleansing process.

Reflections from Behind the Wall: Part 2:

The second step in the deprogramming process is to think about what you would say to the person or people in school who first introduced to you negative thoughts about self and kind. Think about what you would say to others who in your early stages of development introduced thoughts that planted potential seeds of doubt regarding self worth of you and others like yourself. Think about the negative things that you hear now from the radio, TV, movies, coworkers about your race, gender, class, etc.

Think about what you would say to help them deal with the reality rather than the one percent's programming that they picked up from the school system, the neighborhood, the family, or life in general. Ask yourself whether you're ready to set the record straight the next time the negativity rears its ugly head. If not, you've got work to do on your image of yourself and kind. True liberation begins on the inside.

The third step in many ways is the hardest of all. You must begin to search for what are the key questions that must be answered by the person who wants to build a new world. Those questions are (1) What is our origin as a human species? (2) Why are we here on earth? (3) What happens to our mental, emotional, and spiritual consciousness after it leaves the physical body which will be reabsorbed into the earth and atmosphere. Finding answers to these questions will help guide us to align our building to the laws of the universe. Some may say that those are not questions for us to answer. My response is why not, especially since there have many answers given over the last five thousand years through the work of "esoteric scientists".

Since the meaning of esoteric is hidden or invisible, the term esoteric science means the science of the invisible. Esoteric scientists explore this "hidden world" through the development on their non physical sensory perception. This realm of science is the same as that explored by subatomic physicists with their powerful and expensive machines as they try to understand dark matter, subatomic particles, as well as the universe and its creation. Since religions have been given to as tools to help us understand our relationship to the energies of the earth, solar system, universe, and Supreme Being, all religions grew out of the explorations of esoteric scientists.

The work of the subatomic physicists are bringing humankind closer and closer to answers regarding the basic life questions that we need to understand. However, only through a study of the foundations of religious thought can you arrive at clear theories regarding the three basic life questions outlined above. However, main stream Christianity has covered over the esoteric roots of its origin. To explore the esoteric Christian answers to these questions, you need to look at the work on the Gnostic Gospels that were discovered in Egypt in 1945. These were gospels written at the time of Jesus the Christ but not included in the authorized version of Christianity, the Holy Bible.

The writings on the values, principles, and cosmology of Rosicrucians, especially the Rosicrucian Cosmo Conception by Heindel, gives another clear view of the esoteric Christian views. The work of the Theosophists and the Theosophical Society brought to the west in the late 1800s the answers to these questions embedded in the work of the esoteric scientists of the East. Anthroposophy developed by the Austrian physical and esoteric scientist, Rudolph Steiner, in many ways is a synthesis of the teachings of Theosophy and esoteric Christianity.

You can also find answers in the writings on Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Kabbalism (mystical Judaism), Islam, Yourabaism, Bantuism, and the cosmologies of the North and South American native American tribes. Since all religions are exploring the same reality, you will find correlations throughout all. To me, the most helpful work on the question of our relationship as a human species to the forces of the universe and the Supreme Being is Ra Un Nefer Amen's six volume work, Metu Neter, which explores the principles and practices of Ausarianism, the religion of Kemit (Ancient Egypt). This Panamanian musician and esoteric scientist has unveiled the basic teachings of the world's oldest known religion (over 5.000 years) and how we can apply the teachings to the realization of the divinity that is within each of us.

Given what I imagine is the hectic pace of your life, your question is not only how to fit in this last suggestion but also why bother exploring "esoteric science" for answers to questions that you perhaps have rarely considered. My answer is that if you truly desire to participate in the building of a new way of life in this country and world that way of life needs to be built on solid principles that conform to the laws of the universe not the desires of the members of our species. It is obvious that the educational system of the one percent does not give us the basis for such knowledge. Look around at what it has produced to date. I believe that esoteric science shines a beacon light on the path that needs to be followed.

Let me close with the thought that throughout history esoteric scientists have speculated the prophesy that in future a group of human beings would develop powers superior to what the human race had exhibited previously. It was prophesized that these powers would be used to restore peace and harmony to a "troubled world". A close analysis of the thinking of Hitler and the Third Reich reveals that their racialization of this prophesy led to the devastation that they wreaked on the world in general and the Jewish people in particular.

My speculation on the prophesy has led to the thought that given mixture of the races in America's melting pot, this would be a logical place for an advanced racial--human racial-- consciousness to emerge. I know that many of you are saying to yourselves, "How will all this speculation help us deal with the reality of the oppression that we are facing today, Here and Now?" My answer is that while we must continue to struggle against oppression, history shows us that all empires brubg their moment of oppressive reality onto the stage of life and then after wreaking havoc begin to crumble from within as we are now witnessing this one crumbling. My question is that while we watch this one going through its death pangs, what are we doing to prepare ourselves to build a system of peace, justice, and harmony for the future out of the ashes of the oppressive chaos of the past.

As those of us, who yearn in our heart of hearts for a world of peace, justice, and harmony, look out on a world that appears more and more chaotic, unjust, and destructive, we must answer the question of whether we continue to stay mired in the justice seeking but ineffective strategies of the past; whether we wait for some Savior with mystical powers to come and save us from ourselves; or whether we take what seems to be the only logical path and transform ourselves in order to mirror individually and collectively the world that we wish to create. To me, it is time to "Let our light shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine".

Peace and Love,


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