Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God's great Judgment Seat;
But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,
When two strong men stand face to face,
tho' they come from the ends of the earth!
-- Rudyard Kipling
everywhere there are a few people who do not see eye to eye with their fellow beings. when the differing seers are of two different social groups, there arises an outright struggle to make the other side see things as each respective side does. in it, as gandhi had observed, “it is not in the interests of the rich to cooperate with the poor; it is in the interests of the poor to non-cooperate with the rich.” it is the extreme position that each of the opposing sides is boxed in. but as this boxing is not a mutually agreed upon endeavor the size as well as the interior of the two boxes are not identical. the confines of the rich are flexibly vast according to the size of individual rich person’s ego. the poor are literally boxed into the confines as determined by the rich. the rich person’s box is to keep the poor out of the box, while the box for the poor is to contain the poor within. that is the jaded, gated community and the ghetto.
neither of the boxes is a biological requirement without which the biological body of the rich or the poor cannot survive. rather, it is the confine that forms the rich and the poor. it is the very process that hinders the natural growth of trees and turns them into bonsai trees. it is a planned retardation of life, whether of trees or humans who are made to live and grow making an appearance of existence, but without the naturalness about them. raised thus in confinement, with the carefully determined allotment of the nourishment, the poor experience the pains and suffering of the retardation process. if you have any doubts about this, watch some critically deformed children near temples in india, who are placed there to beg for alms by the professionals. they kidnap young children, and put them in specially made harnesses. tied in it the child’s body is compressed and grows deformed, very much like a sapling of a tree growing in a bonsai expert’s nursery. both the bonsai tree grower and the professionals, who deform children for begging, work on the onlookers’ sense of wonderment or pity at the expense of the pain and suffering of the trees and the children.
though the human consciousness has evolved to include some rights of animals –giant panda, for one, is routinely surgically raped to impregnate her despite her unwillingness to have her off-springs born in captivity -- it is not yet cognizant of the right of the plant life and the rights of all the other things and beings that together constitute the cosmos. the jain perception of the human existence promotes a living that causes the minimum of disturbance of the animate and inanimate objects. but all such awareness of individuals has been sidelined as mere philosophies or religious thinking when it interferes with the promotion of a commercial product.
and commerce is the single most segregating factor that has created the apartheid regime, social, political, religious, and intellectual. commerce in itself is not the cause. it is but the symptom of fear of not having enough, or the effect of being deprived from having enough. the rags to riches type person often shows off the abundance of his wealth. all the temples, mosques, churches and the soup kitchens and religious or other charitable foundations are the show offs of the rich. this is observed in an indian saying: “a convert believer says his prayer louder”. since the physical body of the person does not consume more because more is available, all rich people are rich only in belief. children born to the rich grow up taking the affluent living for granted, much the same as the poor’s children are induced to believing that the short comings of life’s necessities are a given fact to which they have to get used to.
seeing eye to eye scares people who are on the either side of the divide. even looking eye to eye into one’s own eyes would feel scary. most people, who have mirrors, use them not to look into their eyes to meet themselves. they have mirrors to improvise their image in other peoples’ eyes. there is one form of experimental meditative technique in which one sits quietly before a mirror and looks into one’s eyes. after the initial scary thoughts regarding who one is, one sees that one has been an actor pretending to be all those images, persons, that one thinks others like one to be. so people put on makeup, hide behind the costumes, wear dark sunglasses to avoid seeing eye to eye.
only people who can look straight in the eye are on equal terms with each other, either in strength or are in love. not love that is possessive and looks for things and beings whose acquisition enhances one’s self.
toddlers are not scared. so they get along fine with each other. the fear, which is a residue of an actual physical hurt is manipulated by the adults and is implanted in the small children in the form of scary fairy tales in which the adult offers the safety taking the form of the magical wand of the kindly fairy or rescuing angel. later on, triggered by the slight discomfort, the now adolescent and young adults seek to feel reassured by the make believe transmigration into a character of a story who is always rescued from all sorts of weird situations of hurtful kind. the child abuse is not only physical kind. and the verbal abuse is not only of angry and demeaning spoken words. people are also made to feel inferior with the implication that, even a belief system not accepted by the people in power results in all kinds of hardships in life. the state supported christian and Islamic beliefs have converted many in the third world, not necessarily being believers of the newly acquired belief. it is almost entirely due to the notion of warding off the sense of insecurity perceived in accepting, at least outwardly the beliefs of the ruling class.
the pictures above look very peaceful and serene compared to a video of the very arduous looking act of beheading of a libyan soldier by the rebel, on obamaslibya.com. it is so impressive a scene, that it will be stuck with you to haunt your sense of being human, for even carnivores do not indulge in the prolonged act of killing.
seeing eye to eye requires an unoccupied state of awareness. just as even the camera lens would not record an impression on a previously exposed negative. even the eyes of the dead express something. this person has personally seen his younger sister, and, later his close friend die. he had also come upon a man who had hanged himself to death only a few minutes before; has undergone the ‘near death’ – as others saw that -- experiences at least thrice, and he has seen a monkey felled from high in the tree, being shot by a young siamese farmer. he fell very near this person. he was gasping for air, dying to die, looking straight in this writer’s eyes, questioning: “what did I do wrong?” he had assembled hundreds of photographs of the dead, mostly from the vietnam war era. in all instances what he had observed and personally experienced, was the moment of death as the actual liberating factor, whether from the tormenting enemy or the terrible disease.
“jivo jivivasya bhakshanam” (life is the fodder of life), observed the vedic indian seers of things natural. the difference between that libyian rebel and the professional butcher is not in the act, but why so. in causal relationships between the actor and the act, both the butcher and the soldier are earning their living, as does a president, whose job is more like a manager of the slaughterhouse. as managers they both constantly strive to improve the techniques of killing, not so much for the mercy on the victims, but to further distancing from the sight of the gory act of killing. obviously, obama, as the president couldn’t care less of a killing, especially done by a drone. after all, even an avowed meat eater leaves it unto the butcher to do all the bloody gore of the meat eating. in answer to the question: “where does the beef come from?”, a chicago school child had reportedly said, “from the safeway (the supermarket).” so, obama only intellectually knows that the beef on his plate was once a live animal, for he did not see it being butchered, much the same, he does not see anybody getting killed in Iraq, Afghanistan, pakistan or libya.
drones are enabling the average american citizens that distancing device that enables a good christian the safe distance enabling him to not see the contradiction between his belief –“thou shall not kill” – and his violent way of life. it is not just the christianity, all ideologies, religious or otherwise, is the opiate factor. like the opium addicts, believers hallucinate, and the hallucination is seeing what is not. it is a make believe living. in it there is god who is the “father” figure (for christians), and “merciful” (in islam), and for those who do not experience that, the catholics will still want “to count your blessings”, just as in the plantation south of the u.s. the status quo for the negro slaves enabled the “house nigger looks down upon the yard nigger, and the yard nigger looks down upon the farm nigger.” the slaves working in the southern farms had no blessings to count. one of the african americans now manages the whole of the u.s., but a manager is an employee, may be in a position higher than that of a house servant, but still working for another person. and that person is the rich <reich<rex:-king. and the rich, the king in the linguistic disguise, does not see eye to eye with those who work from him, from the president, prime minister down to the lowly sepoy and peons.
the very graceful looking children very genuinely will draw pictures with peace symbols prompted by their art teachers. people do all sorts of things ranging from the most cruel to the most gracefully sublime kindness. but it is very rarely done so on the spur of the moment, devoid of any motivation implanted by the church or the state or the combination of the both.
it is as the buddhist perception of the process of perception becomes: when two adult persons meet, they become six persons; one as what one is, one as what one likes to be seen in another person’s eyes, and one as what another person thinks one is. there are the other three facing one’s three images. and all six frighten each other. seeing eye to eye is a wonderful experience. next time when you see a baby in its mother’s arms, look at its face. while looking at a baby, there is the thoughtless stare, pure and simple. it will stare you with those big round clean eyes unblinkingly. it will look you in the eye deep inside your own sense of being. look at the child with the stare that only children can behold. it negates all the many layers of imprinted descriptions what is before one’s eyes that one is induced to think one is seeing. an infant depicts the ecocentrically pure state of being, that, like the creatures in the wild espouse in the onlooker reciprocal sense of being, free, guiltless.