“And what has happened is as though I, having always been outside it—more outside it than victimized by it, but mainly outside it—can see it better than you can see it.” —James Baldwin
The Other sees what she is Other to better than those who are not. Those outside of a self-and-culturally-replicating system can see the entire system as well as the positions of those within it clearly. They can also see their relationship to that system – as well as to individuals and groups within that system – clearly as well.
This, of course, is dependent upon that person’s level of detachment from the system and the negative externalities it forces upon the lives of those Other, be they economic, political or social in nature. Insight can be trauma-driven, brought about by fateful encounters with said system. It can also, and often is, spiritually-driven, arising from the deep well-spring of prayer and meditation that girds the lives of those bound to death-dealing systems of psychic and physical enslavement by destiny.
The state of clarity these Others experience is not always similarly clear to those ensconced within the system, just as the water in a fish tank is not clear to the fish inhabiting that tank. The problem arises when those within the system refuse to acknowledge the validity of the perceptions of those without. It’s like Congress giving themselves raises for the great job they are doing. Or, the police, policing themselves.
There is little to be done about this. It is not as if those who seek to make America great again are going to listen to those who they want to be greater than again, as they are now, apparently, lesser than, according to their consciously skewed perceptions.
At this point all that can be done is continue to call the contradictions out when they occur. Point out the logical inconsistencies and conundrums in presentation versus fact, the difference between rhetoric and action, the gulf between perception and reality.
Truth can not be hidden for long. And, eventually, Truth wins. The overwhelming preponderance of evidence amasses against the depredations of denial and untruth, or, as MLK stated:
“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
Bound within the Now, we cannot perceive the form of that future justice clearly, nor can we consciously invoke its multifarious modalities of manifestation. Time and space collaborate in Mystery as we are left to wring our hands, rail against and wail timorously, while simultaneously standing strong in the crucible of the moment determined to live our truths.
Bracing and fortifying will beneath the cascade of freezing water cannons in North Dakota. Speaking out and challenging authority on street corners or stopping traffic in urban America. Chanting and facing down neighbors and friends in the malls and neighborhoods of suburbia. Being true to you online, across social media.
Even if you can barely perceive the limitations of your own perception, you are tasked by life and fate to challenge yourself to the point of fundamental shift. To look at where your triggers lie, what pisses you off about what you just read, what it will take to be on the right side of history.
The receiving end of that “Arc of Justice”. The import of this alignment is not arbitrary. It is genetic and accrues across lineages, passed down through generations as children inherent the sins of the father, by learning, mostly, but supported and exacerbated by environmentally-determined gene activation.
All we want is justice. And by we, I mean those aligned with Universal Truth, no matter their physical appearance. We want the human family to prosper. Not just right now, but in the future. Which requires a whole slew of fundamental changes in outlook and societal formation. For an end to things as they used to be and are and the beginning of things as they shall be.
“The end is the beginning of all things, suppressed and hidden, awaiting to be released through the rhythm of pain and pleasure.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti