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October 15, 2011

Rethink Occupy Wall Street and Everything Else

"The soft overcomes the hard;
The formless penetrates the impenetrable;
Therefore I value taking no action.
Teaching without words,
Work without action,
Are understood by no one.
" ~Dao De Jing

Many people are trying to make sense of the Occupy Wall Street movement using an understanding of contemporary economics and traditional politics, but from a philosophical perspective, the movement may be, symbolically speaking,  meant to transcend the very nature of our modern beliefs and open minds to possibilities beyond those already in existence, in an attempt to inspire new and imaginative means of human organization for the greater good of our species and planet.  Utopian philosophy is nothing new, but the adoption of a utopian philosophy into social policy is often deemed radical - thus the problem.

Reality is a motha fugger - we cannot transform our entire species into the ideal human being accepting of a transcendent society where greed is not a guiding factor.  Humans are not essentially rational beings, at least not today.  People are reflections of their teachings - of their culture - of their society - of their authority.  What is authority to you?  Is that a source of truth? Think about it.

Should we return to the days of city states, where people congregate in groups based not on common heritage like the days of old, but on common philosophy.  We must stop drawing lines based on origin, ethnicity, race or creed and start coming together with others based on commonalities in political and socioeconomic ideology.  Strive for a common purpose. 

Whether it starts with the occupation of a park, the purchasing of a residential building or property, the organizing of a village or the occupation of a large tract of open land, maybe the best way to start a movement of change is to refuse to participate in, communicate with, or  be part of the problematic parts of our societal structure, rather than to constantly sullen your message by bending to the whim of a corrupt authority.  Maybe the movement must actually move, relocate, quarantine themselves off from the diseased parts and refuse to acknowledge its existence, then see how many people follow and join. 

The Occupiers have bickered with Mayor Bloomberg, who is a capitalist politician obviously against their efforts.  They've battled with police, an authoritative force established to maintain the status quo, inherently against the efforts of anyone speaking out against their employer, the state.  They have demanded the attention of a corrupted mainstream media.  They have defended themselves against conservative critics, who refuse to acknowledge the barefaced worldwide corruption and disparity caused by a crippling greed that is pervading ever walk of human existence.  What do they think to gain?  Do the occupiers truly believe that they can shake these people from the conditioning and disinformation forced upon them since birth?

Ayn Rand's epic capitalist manifesto, Atlas Shrugged, may be considered blasphemy for many within the anti-corporate movement gaining steam across the globe, but there are many things to take away from the epic anti-socialism fiction.   In the novel, a group of wealthy industrialist secede from American society and sequestered to a canyon in Colorado where they set up their own society, shielded off from the corruption they believe is overtaking the country.  They leave not due to capitalist greed, but because of the bastardization of capitalism and the influx of government intervention and corrupt social measures, but they leave nonetheless.

They defect because they possess ideals and morality which their fellow countrymen no longer adhere to, understand, or hold in esteem.  They depart because the few have corrupted the many.  They escape because they must in order to exist. 

Why don't the occupiers consider a similar course of action?  Pool funds together and establish your own community, outside of the system, with principles set forth akin to the moral philosophy you establish.  Seek happiness in good and honest pleasures.  Live, grow and develop, collectively.  Show the world the possibility.

This may drum up fears of a cult mindset, bringing up horrific histories such as the Manson Family and Jonestown.  As stated, we must leave behind fixed understandings and strive for greatness.  The Occupy Wall Street movement is gaining quite the following, but it is a separated and fragmented movement that can only go so far in its current form.  The majority may not be able to understand a leaderless movement that embraces true democratic principles, humanistic tenets and strives for a greater good, but that does not mean it cannot thrive and exist.

The global movement must adapt and evolve to progress, and eventually evolution may mean realizing when your current habitat is restricting your ability to flourish and traveling off to better pastures.

The time has come to rethink everything.   

"Empty the Self completely;
Embrace perfect peace.
The World will rise and move;
Watch it return to rest.
All the flourishing things
Will return to their source.
This return is peaceful;
It is the way of Nature,
An eternal decay and renewal.
Understanding this brings enlightenment,
Ignorance of this brings misery.
Who understands Nature's way becomes all-cherishing;
Being all-cherishing he becomes impartial;
Being impartial he becomes magnanimous;
Being magnanimous he becomes part of Nature;
Being part of Nature he becomes one with Tao;
Being one with Tao he becomes immortal:
Though his body will decay, Tao will not.
" ~ Tao Te Ching