Solitaire. Sex. Politics.
Solitaire. I do regularly play the game and use it as a form of meditation. That’s my game but it is also a metaphor, a reflection of my present, my life.
“Oh sure,” you’re saying, “but you don’t really live a solitary life because your daughter and grandson are there with you.” And while this is true on the surface, underneath, I am very much alone, as are we all. This is my time for serious solitary contemplation.
Where is this feeling for me of being utterly alone? It is under my emotional shell, which seems to be getting both harder and thicker and still quite sensitive with each day as I observe with utter sadness coupled with increasing anger at the state of our country and world. Sadness and anger. What a powerful combination of feelings.
I ask myself, have I been naive to think humanity would eventually, sooner rather than later, wake up to become compassionate, for our all inhabitants on our planet ((plant, animal and human) even loving all? After all, the motto I adopted as a teen was “Make love, not war” and while at first it was because I thought it meant sexual, not political; it was not too long before I realized that even sex is political.
Yes, I soon understood that sex, I mean the act of participating in it itself might be communal, it is deeply personal, almost solitary in that no one really knows what the other is thinking or sensating, or attempting to share, no matter how much we might believe we do. We can only imagine or estimate what our partner experiences, even if they explain it, in detail.
A shared sexual experience is still a solitary one for each partner, but It is said the memory of our every experience (even those of our ancestors) and even thought form is held within the cells of our body and so much of our human existence is based on our personal histories. Science tells us about inherited disease, well what about inherited dis-ease?
At this moment you may be thinking, “Well, shit, if that is so, I know my familial story is full of major tumult, thus I must be carrying about a whole lot of hurt and fear in this body of mine. That can’t be good. That’s just too disturbing to even comprehend.”
And you’re right. You thought I was just talking about sex and would forget about politics. Nope. Not sorry.
I’ve been watching, in profound sadness, coupled with indignation, the news of people protesting in solidarity with our sisters and brothers of color as police fire teargas into the crowds, beating and arresting innocent citizens. My sorrow is that collectively we must demonstrate in the streets in order to show our support, for if our society were one of mutual love and understanding we might instead have a joyful parade. My frustrated anger is at the inhumane treatment by police of those who are protesting inhumanity. Yet it is deeper than pointing a finger at the Injustice meted out by the police as they are only the paid arms of an older culture based on racism, hatred and greed.
I do not concern myself with the looters of electronics, clothing and food, when the real looters are those corporate bullies and politicians who force millions to suffer while they benefit. I know that stealing is so very wrong, but greed is worse for that is larceny and evil. There are always opportunists, but the biggest of those run Amazon, Walmart and oil/pharma/chemical/agri businesses. They have little to no conscience nor need for more money. They are the real Looters and their only fear is not being able to continue their pillage.
I wonder. I contemplate how it came into my head that the political process is individual at all but then that “aha” jumps at me as my thinking progresses. If we are the sum of all personal (and perhaps human) experience, it is no wonder the landscape of our political/economic system of dealing with one another is so fucked up. And those who are the culprits, the perpetrators of society’s malaise require a major intervention which may mean more than psychological therapy. I choose to know what that would look like,
Because I sit here, alone, knowing I am a compassionate and concerned individual, whose parents made a point of caring for others, whoever they were, no matter skin-color, religion, economic status, even sexual preference. They taught me that charity, while it might begin at home, needs to be given to others, generously and without strings.
Then what about those who have been raised with anger, fear and hatred of “others”? Is it really any surprise that they, with wounds so deeply enmeshed in their very being, without being taught or having the inner strength to question their upbringing, continue this socially destructive behavior, even taking it to the level of physical abuse or murder? Many of those in police and military have been attracted to the “profession” because of their wounded personal experiences. The “gift” that keeps on giving.
What about those destroying property? Hatred coupled with anger is a powerful thing. I briefly imagine myself had I not been born white, privileged and empowered by a family practice of social responsibility. I might be teeming with such powerful feelings, for being consistently disrespected because of the color of my skin, poverty, discrimination in housing and employment.
I sit now, upright, by myself and I know the answers lie within me, because it’s in my cells. It’s been there since I marched for peace and justice in 1972 at the re-elect Nixon Headquarters Los Angeles, and the police disbursed our peaceful protest using batons. My body remembers.
Politics is, like sex, a solitary experience that we share with others. Let’s make it pleasurable for all concerned. And go get therapy in the meantime, this is not a game.