It’s still working!

Trump Muslim Ban Protest – Turner Park – Omaha, NE. 29 January 2017. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Author: Shelby Bell from Omaha, NE, US.

Fascism may be once again on the rise, but democracy is not dead yet, and YOU can help democracy prevail—which is a whole lot more sensible than giving in and bowing down to the forces that would like to lead the country into World War Three, further enriching the alt-conservative billionaires, and finalizing the transformation of the United States into the WASPMR (White Anglo Saxon Protestant Male Republic).

Look! Listen! Smell! Resist is in the air.
Write! Call! Join! Protest is everywhere.

Here are some of the opportunities arising to help Take America Forward.

Join the Facebook #TheIdesOfTrump postcard writing campaign.

Spread the word about the General Strikes being planned for February and March 8

Watch for updated reports on other plans for General Strikes .

Keep your ears open for opportunities to make your views known at local town meetings as was done here and and at local community protests as was done here on Inauguration day at the Peace Abbey in Sherborn, MA.

And keep the faith. Nonviolent activism has a long history of success.

P.S. Even if you are not expecting any imminent invitations from the White House, draw courage from the examples of the Boston Patriots who declined Donald Trump’s invitation to come celebrate their Super Bowl victory at his humble new abode—including, as of now, the following: Chris Long, LeGarrette Blount, Alan Branch Dont’a Hightower, Devin McCourty and Martellus Bennett.

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6 Responses to It’s still working!

  1. LB says:

    “Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves. Everyone carries a shadow, and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the blacker and denser it is. When an inner situation is not made conscious, it appears outside as fate.”~ Carl G. Jung

    When we stop resisting this deeper knowledge of self, our world will know greater peace. Until then we’ll continue going in circles, as we resist/protest and *project* unconscious aspects of *ourselves*.

    • Stefan Schindler says:

      Dear LB:
      Projection is indeed an all too human trait, rarely transcended. Projection can be “positive” (in the sense of casting an idealized image) or “negative” (in the sense of casting nasty attributes). In both cases, projection is a form of enchantment, perhaps better described as illusion; and both are fraught with danger. One perceives the illusion, not the reality. In positive projection, one sees through rose-tinted glasses. In negative projection, one “sees through a glass darkly.” In short, projection is a form of exaggeration, which is too often used as excuse for irrational and immoral behavior. A contemporary example goes by the name of “American exceptionalism,” embraced by all too many political conservatives. America is viewed as necessarily blessed by God, incapable of doing wrong, and the most perfect society that history has ever known. To think this way is as dangerous as negative projection (country-hating cynicism), because it leads to flag-worshiping jingoistic fanaticism.
      Projecting an unconscious negative image is what Jung called “projecting the Shadow.” Projecting the Shadow was once articulated by a Buddhist sage who said: “When you cast your own negative qualities onto me, you are like a man riding a horse who has forgotten where his horse is!”

      Self-actualizing maturity entails what Jung calls “withdrawing projections,” in order to see reality more clearly. In the quote with which you begin your “comment,” Jung describes this as making the inner situation conscious. Failure to do so leads to repetition of mistakes. Hence Santayana’s observation, equally applicable to individuals, groups and countries: “Those who don’t learn from history are condemned to repeat it.” Which is how I interpret your phrase “going in circles,” and why I see America’s current wars in the Middle East as Vietnam Redux.

      Shadow projection goes a long way toward explaining both civic and international violence. It is, for example, absurd to think that God necessarily blesses America, no matter what she does. I’m more inclined to agree with the bumper sticker that says: “God is coming, and boy, is She mad!”

      is equally absurd and infantile to cast other nations and cultures as “evil doers;” or, as Reagan did, to call the Soviet Union “the evil empire.” It was precisely that kind of ideological nonsense, abuse of language, and Shadow-projection-used-as-excuse-for-imperialism that led to America’s Indochina Holocaust (euphemistically called “The Vietnam War”), and which now has us mired in a terrorist campaign against jihadists in the Middle East — which, though officially forbidden to say so, is in fact nothing more than a continuation of America’s 65-year project to procure some of the world’s richest oil supplies for America’s self-consuming consumerism. Does anyone actually believe that the Cheney-Bush administration would have launched an attack on Iraq if its only national resource was broccoli?

      In sum, as you rightly imply, projecting the Shadow is the primary cause of hatred, racism, sexism, and militarism. It is, in fact, the universal root of prejudice of all kinds, as Jung so insightfully showed. And so, LB, you’ve touched on a really important point! Ideologues on both sides of the political spectrum need to be wary of projection’s insidious seductions and nefarious consequences. You rightly deduce: “When we stop resisting this deeper knowledge of self, our world will know greater peace.”
      Your final line, however, goes too far. You seem to suggest that self-discovery – the psychological maturity that ceases to project – leads to passive acceptance of the world as it is. You imply that “protest” is simply Shadow-projecting; a march of folly; merely going in self-defeating “circles.” I wonder, then:

      Was it wrong for Jesus to chase the money-changers out of the temple? Was he merely projecting his own Shadow onto the greedy bastards who daily betrayed the moral heart of the Torah and The Sermon on the Mount? Was it wrong for Thomas Paine to campaign against the oppressions of British colonialism? Was it wrong for abolitionists to protest slavery? Was it wrong for suffragettes to protest for the right to vote? Was it wrong for Helen Keller and Dorothy Day to stand in solidarity with Eugene Victor Debs – the five-time socialist candidate for president, who was jailed by Woodrow Wilson for protesting the draft during World War One, and who boldly declared that “capitalism is cannibalism”?
      Was it wrong for South African blacks to protest apartheid? Was it wrong for Vietnamese monks to protest America’s dropping napalm on Vietnamese children? Was it wrong for Martin Luther King to protest racism, greed, and war?

      Were the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960s merely Shadow-projecting exercises in delusional, “circular,” self-defeating futility?
      Is it wrong for conscientious veterans to stand in protest-solidarity with Native Americans at Standing Rock? Is it wrong for the citizens of Flint, Michigan, to protest the poisoning of their drinking water by greedy corporations sanctioned by a racist Republican governor? Was it wrong for those same citizens to protest President Obama’s cowardly silence and unconscionable lack of action in the face of such an egregious hate crime?
      Is it wrong to protest the proliferation of nuclear weapons and the increasing despoliation of the biosphere, which increasingly propel us toward nuclear holocaust on the one hand and ecological apocalypse on the other?

      I don’t think so; nor, I suspect, if you think it through, do you.
      You might recall that Jung, who lived through two world wars, was aghast at the increasing potency and availability of atomic weapons, which was the primary reason for his writing Modern Man in Search of a Soul. It was also one of the reasons why, when asked what he thought of Western civilization, Mahatma Gandhi replied: “I think it would be a good idea.”

      Accordingly, I applaud Engaging Peace, and all who are now protesting American racism, bigotry, imperialism, and greed, taking to heart – and the streets – in active embodiment of the quote attributed to Edmund Burke, which I paraphrase as follows: “The only thing worse than bad men who do evil is good men who do nothing to stop them.”


      • LB says:

        Stefan ~ “Passive acceptance of the world as it exists” (and of our system and selves) is what allows well-intentioned but manipulated, misinformed/uninformed and culturally conditioned individuals to continue voting for and aligning with the same corrupt systems and behaviors they’re protesting.

        Without self-awareness, even our most lofty goals of social justice and peace can become corrupted, overshadowed by other considerations ~ something Kathie talked about in one of her posts:

        “According to Bandura, “mechanisms of moral disengagement” can serve to satisfy their users that they are behaving morally because they are conforming to the values of their role models, spiritual guides, or political leaders.”

        Dualistic thinking keeps us trapped in our boxes, going in circles, always addressing symptoms rather than causes, believing we must choose and align ourselves with one of two (apparently) opposing points of view, Democrat or Republican, Liberal or Conservative ~ even when both support the same oppressive system.

        Would the mass protests we’re seeing have taken place if Hillary Clinton had won? I don’t think so.

        Stefan ~ Maybe it would be helpful to consider my last statement within the larger context of my other comments, links and examples. You’re preaching to the choir, my friend.

  2. Dot Walsh says:

    How interesting! I have just been reading and talking about what “45” is bringing to us. I agree he is our teacher and he has awakened a slothful society that not only continues to abuse mother earth and members of the human family but thinks that it is a simple solution of choosing the right party in a government that I have a difficult time identifying with. I just met up with my friend who returned from Cuba. Now there is a country continuing to be abused by our country 100 miles away and yet when I talk with others they place all the blame on Castro. I am still finding my way, wanting peace in this world and yet seeing we are in a delicate place of balance. Still looking for the tipping point!

  3. Barbara says:

    I’m more of a tennis fan than a follower of football, but I got such a big charge out of those courageous Patriots snubbing Donald Trump that I am now their devoted admirer. They showed true class in their decision to veer away from a billionaire braggart who shows constant disdain for so many Americans and for democracy itself.

  4. Dear LB: Kindly allow me to add a postscript to my lengthy response to your short and pithy “comment.” I just read the article you recommend. It makes some good, even excellent, points. But the language is too extreme, and the author is guilty of the very either/or dualism (us vs them) he critiques and bemoans. To argue that the only way to do justice to oneself is to go within is to forget, or ignore, that justice in the world is just as important. Or, to put it another way: Fighting for peace, freedom and justice, in active protest on the streets — non-violently, and hopefully free of Shadow-projection — is as crucial to our global survival as emanating loving vibes on a meditation cushion, or chanting mantras with a group in a temple or a home. To be human is not only to be an embodied soul; to be human is to be-in-the-world as citizen of both country and planet, with concomitant responsibilities. Wisdom and compassion, soul-searching and justice-making, go together, hand in hand, and necessarily so. The article’s author forgets, or ignores, all the liberal activists — through the decades, even centuries — who fought for the free-speech rights that make both the website and the article’s publication possible. I wonder: when the right-wing fascists come for him, to whom will he appeal then? Or will he just sit in his prison cell chanting Om, ignoring all the screams around him, until he himself is put on the rack? To call Thomas Paine and Martin Luther King — and Mother Jones, Emma Goldman, Rosa Parks, Fannie Lou Hamer, Howard Zinn, and John Lennon — puppets of The Matrix, just as foolish and deluded as those they opposed, is the height of arrogance, and shows a deep lack of gratitude for all those who fought — and still fight — for the freedom to speak and write which the article’s author so blithely takes for granted. I humbly suggest that you were inadvertently seduced by the wizardry of the author’s language; and, hence, in your final line, misspoke yourself. It is a common danger, strewn along the pages of all too many spiritual texts, and too often present in quotes posted on Facebook and elsewhere. As one shamanic pioneer to another, I trust that you take my comments in the right way, and hope that you soon return to The Middle Way.

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