The people are starting to see crosseyed because of the dank smell rising from the miasma that is the state of the world today. And crossed as they look, they project some kind of particular fantasy as being the source of this perversion. Historically, when a social evolution is turning on itself, when the noble ideals that once produced its greatness have turned into their own corruption, the people start looking for scapegoats. Some particular fantasy that is supposedly the carrier of the rot. Something to blame that can be cut out like a cancer sore.
But there is not one particular cause that can trace the source of corruption. The entire spirit of a people is affected. Different parts of the body are merely more or less infected by it, but they’re not the source of it. The trick is to trace what the types of social cancer have in common. There is a certain spirit to them all, that cannot be understood in terms of simple sources nor causes, except maybe by the dance that passes through them all. But finding the words to delineate this process is difficult, because it is something like a storm gathering overhead, a tension that is building, with only an occasional flickering of lightning illuminating the towering cumulus.
But what is the tower that needs to be struck down by lightning? What temple needs to be toppled? And what is it exactly to what we sacrifice in those temples?
The greatest illusion of secular society is that it has forgotten that it too is basically a cult: there has been a change of symbol and ritual, but there is still blood dripping down the steps of our temples… most people merely fail to recognise what are the holy sites of the power games that are played today. We can recognise a hint in that the tower central to ancient Babylon was both its religious, administrative and financial centre. The Roman Empire went in hiding in the catholic church, underwriting the feudal feuds between the fiefs of Europe, while giving shape to the spiritual bondage between them. The relationships between the people, the state and its religion is a tricky one, and not reducible to one institution or the other, but rather the complex flow between them all. Different individual parts are merely more or less possessed by what passes in between them. Some nodes in the network may have more influence than others, but those nodes might be considered to be more possessed by that power, rather than being the source of it: the spirit of the times being concentrated more intently there.
The concepts that seem most possessed by the corruption, are all hard to grasp in their own right, like money and the lust for power. Even though these are probably part of the reason why many of our industries are corrupted, it is not something easily understood. It is a whole thunderstorm upon itself, and many people are possessed by its energy even if they barely understand what it is that passes through them. Most people have no idea what money is, yet spend most of their waking hours working for it, barely recognising it is not working for them. They are thus suffering from the same spirit as those on top of the pyramid, but inverted… in the end it binds us all. The source of corruption is somewhere to be found in between them all.
This musing was inspired by the rumination below. It delineates one of the vectors of the the corruption that has taken hold in our temple: the tragedy of privation and the sacrifice of the commons.
Economics for the People, Against the capitalist creed of scarcity and self-interest, a plan for humanity’s shared flourishing is finally coming into view’
Image from Halsey’s “Hopeless Fountain Kingdom” commissioned by Capitol Records