The Absurdity of War, Power and Control

The death, destruction and mayhem resulting from war, power and control is beyond description. Yet, our civilized world is in a constant state of war. Look around and you will quickly discover that it is one nation against another, one religious group against another, one ethnic group against another. It is an endless process of destruction. We think of ourselves as advanced, the highest rung in the animal kingdom; yet the carnage war, power and control continues. How long can this go on? Will it ever end?

War is not just a conflict between two disparaging groups. The conflict can involve two or more people or even just one person. Two people develop a love relationship and get married. They soon begin quarreling. Their quarrels increase in frequency and intensity. These quarrels are simply mini-wars. Even so, they sometimes lead to the same death and mayhem that is seen in great wars. What is even more frightening is that the fighting is over insignificant, little things that only seemed significant at the time. In fact, at the time, these things take on a life of their own and become the only thing that really matters. However, in hindsight, they not only seem to be insignificant, they are!

Here we are, supposedly, the most advanced species on earth, and we are always fighting. It does not even take two people to create an argument, fight or war; it simply takes one person, yourself. Just for a moment, take a close look at yourself. How many times have you conducted war on yourself? You fight with yourself about what is right or wrong, how you did not do this or that correctly or how you need to improve on something. The condemnation of yourself over foolish little things is simply amazing. Bottom line, if you cannot even get along with yourself, then how can you expect to get along with those you care about, let alone those you know nothing about?

The absurdity of war among nations, religions, races, couples, people, and even within you is that these wars are not really very different from each other. They differ only in the number of people involved and the type of weapons used. The intent and the reasons for the war are the same. Pain, suffering and agony are present in all scenarios. Death, divorce and slander are just a few of the myriad of events found in all aspects of war: from the biggest to the very tiniest. Your emotions are wound tight with feelings of fear, anger and sadness. Whether it is a nation in conflict or just yourself, feelings are going to be experienced. Moreover, they will be the same feelings and surprisingly, they will be experienced at the same intensities. They are the same!

You feel sadness, anger and fear over the death of someone you know who was lost in war. You feel sadness, anger and fear over a divorce. You feel sadness, anger and fear over the criticism you place on yourself. The pain and suffering is there, regardless of the size of the conflict. Intellectually you may say that the conflicts are different, but emotionally, they are the same. Even in action, or in desire of action they are the same. People hit other people, people hurt themselves, people get divorced, people kill each other, people kill themselves. This is war!

The actual cause for this absurdity is also the same, regardless of its perpetrators, or the type of conflict: power and control. The United States against Russia, white South Africa against black South Africa, Christians against Jews, Afro-Americans against White Americans, Croatians against Serbians against Muslims, and visa versa, are all fighting each other because of power/control. Even many of the names of different organizations contain the key element of conflict: Black Power, Gray Power, Gay Power, Women's Power. Even groups with subtle titles imply the same issue. Women’s' Rights, Feminists, Male Rights, Male Support Groups, the Moral Majority and the list goes on. Do not ever kid yourself power and control is the issue.

This concept of power and control runs from the highest to the lowest levels of government, schools, religious organizations, families, and even to the individual. The bottom line is very simple, “My belief system is the correct one. My way must be the way. You must conform to what I want.” It is mine versus yours.

You say that you want your child to be free, to be able to do what he wants and to enjoy life. There is a ring of truth to your wishes. However, there is only one little catch; the child is free to do as he chooses, as long as he does not change his beliefs, values, morals, ethics and ideologies from yours. Heaven forbid he should want to convert from Christianity to Judaism, let alone to one of those weird cults! It does not matter if he is happy. You know better. The child has his freedom only within the boundaries that you set up for him.

The child is becoming an adult and making adult decisions. A war breaks out between the child and you over religious beliefs. Can you imagine war over a belief system?! You both believe that you are losing power and must fight to preserve it. Threats occur. Voices are raised. There may even be banishment. All this war happens over a difference in belief systems.

You consider your partner to be a free, independent, human being. For example, your wife can do whatever she wants. However, she had better do it within the range of your morals, beliefs and expectations. If she does not agree with you, you become angry. Why the anger? To convince? To force? Big deal, she disagrees with you; so what! If she looks at another man, or you look at another woman, the war begins. Heaven forbid either of you should ever engage in a relationship with another person. If that happens, real war is declared. Is this freedom?

The ultimate power and control game happens when you are dealing with yourself. You can clearly see this game with such behavior as anorexia, bulimia, alcoholism, drug addiction, depression, panic disorder, phobia and anxiety disorder. These are diagnoses found in psychiatric literature that describe power and control games played by the individual. The very terms suggest that there is something wrong with the person who exhibits the behaviors defined by these terms. Who is making the definition? Simply because it is against the norm, should it be outcast? A diagnosis automatically says that the individual is imperfect. How can this be? Everything in this moment is perfect. It may not be what you want, but it is perfect. What is is. Once again, power and control is the issue. What you want or do not want, is not.

We are always willing to give freedom, as long as that freedom is meeting our social and religious standards. These standards are the beliefs that we have taken to be self-evident, to be truth and to be what is. Yet, they are nothing but beliefs, and delusions as to what should or should not be. As long as man continues to use his mind as a source of reality, he cannot accept others as they are, and cannot accept himself as he is. Without this acceptance, war and carnage will continue. Acceptance or rejection of your beliefs equals power, or the perceived lack of it.

People are neither Black or White, Jewish or Christian, American or Russian, Arab or Israeli. People are neither republican or democratic, mothers or fathers, children or peers. People are neither right or wrong, this or that, yes or no. The bottom line is that we are all simply beings housed in human bodies! We are our Isness. We are identical. We are as identical as the air around us, and yet, as different as each particle of sand in the desert. When we are into the moment with someone, we are not thinking about anything, we are simply with that person. We are enjoying what is natural for us to enjoy. The love, tenderness and compassion are all present. There are no issues of black versus white, or male versus female. There are no beliefs. There are no shoulds or should nots. There is simply a melting of energies. Nations, states, cities, communities, individuals and oneself can all melt into Nowness. Being with yourself and each other now eliminates the need for power. Power and control issues only occur when a person believes that his belief system is the truth. "I will die defending my truth'." "I will kill to prove my way is the right way." "I will fight and argue to get what I want."

You need to win. This need to win creates the fear that if someone else wins, you will not get what you want, you will get hurt, or you will have to do it his or her way. You fear the death of your world as you perceive it, or want it.

Only when you see that people are the same as yourself, will anything change. This change cannot wait for the other person to begin. It must begin with you, and it must begin NOW! You must take the first step, and be willing to accept people as they are. But first, you must be willing to accept yourself as you are. You must be willing to see the difference between truths and beliefs. You must be willing to let go of everything except being here now.

Life is such a beautiful joy. The moment you let go, the whole world is open to you. The moment you experience another person in the here and now, that person takes on a quality that is inexpressible. The moment you are, is the moment that the entire world is what it is supposed to be. The very joy of NOW, the very joy of life, the very joy of being with another is all that is necessary to realize the absurdity of war, power and control.


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