How to make change in the world/ your government/ your community/etc
There is a lot of crazy stuff going on in the world right now to put it mildly. Wars, civil rights battles, financial hell.. How do you all try to make change? What do you think is the most effective way of doing this (whether you personally do this or not): protests, art, voting, talking to people.. When is violence, or is it ever, an okay force in making change?
In Russia there is a very cool protest going on in the form of punk rock, in a way hailing back to when punk rock was protest music in the UK.
I think that art is a very quick way of making a statement- and while I’m sure that signing petitions is a valid way of getting somewhere, it really seems to just add another message to my gmail account..
Alright-thoughts on larger change?
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@Bruce, there is no need for power. The idea of someone being more important and having power over a human being is completely out of line and fucked. People THINK they need power. They want to feel safe and they think governments do that for them.
It’s the same reason why people don’t venture out and meet new people or try to learn new ideas. People want to feel safe and comfortable and they think the best way to do that is to remain with the same group of people and never learn anything new or especially radical.
The only way I can see the human race opening their eyes to the ridiculousness of what is currently going on in the world and how simple it could be to change is through psychedelics. If psychedelics were legal and people were going out in ritualistic style and taking psychotropics, the world would change and progress for the better.
Right now, because the war on drugs exists, we have essentially handed over the keys to our consciousness to the governments. And for what? To keep this system running? This shit system? People need to wake up.
To do so, we need action. Right now. Like many of you have said, lead by example, be blunt, tell people the way you are thinking. It’s all a mind set, people can switch from their animalistic, monkey brain to the intellectual, frontal cortex.
Protesting, voting, writing politicians and such doesn’t really solve anything.
What do you really do when you do these things? You give them the power, and you ask them to solve a problem that isn’t really theirs. Not only do they have different intentions with their power, not only would they rather not solve these problems, but even if they tried they couldn’t. Because the problem is within the individuals, nobody can solve it except themselves.
And giving the power and responsiblity away… well that only makes things worse. It’s the cause of the problem. And it also takes away your freedom. People need to take responsibility for themselves and use their power.
99% of the world’s population are dumbed down, ignorant, lazy mobs. The masses. That’s why the world is so messed up. And they’re not that way because some “evil ruler” forced them, it’s the other way around. The only reason there are blinded leaders in the world is because the demand for them is huge. People are lazy, they want comfort and security, they don’t want responsibility, don’t want to make tough decisions, don’t like having to choose, and so on.
That’s why leaders exist. Leaders are only supplying what the masses ask for. “Make me comfortable, make me dumb, take away my responsibilities” that’s what the typical person is constantly asking for. And that’s why the world is messed up.
This society will never be better than it currently is, it’s reached its max potential, and it’s fundamentally flawed and based on corruption. Society is only corrupt because the people in it are corrupt.
The problem is within the individuals, nowhere else. Everything else is just a symptom. Like acne or cancer. Those blemishes and tumors are nothing but results of abusing your body, the problem is the abuse, not the zits and cancerous cells. People cause this to themselves. This society/culture is like a cancer, or a virus. A virus or cancer isn’t evil, it just does what it evolved to do, find host cells and pass on its own genes into it, surviving by leeching off of another organism. That’s what society is. Society is supposed to be a tool for humans, now it’s the other way around (technically it’s still a tool, but people are using it against themselves.)
People are living as followers to an imaginary concept. Society, money, religion, even science, all these things were created as tools for humans to use. But somewhere along the line people decided to be morons and let this shit dictate their lives. Willingly making themselves slaves to something that does not exist.
And as a result, they fuck up the world. But they don’t care, they’re selfish and ignorant and can’t see beyond their nose. They don’t understand cause and effect, or much of anything for that matter. And they seek distractions (tv, videogames, drugs, wealth, being special, whatever) to remain ignorant.
I don’t think you even understand how bad the condition of humanity currently is. It’s not just bad, it’s seriously fucking ultra horrible. But it’s slowly getting better.
Just remember to be the change you want for this world, lead by example. That’s what it all boils down to. Take action, now. Not now = not at all.
Just be great.
@Nicholas [Granted, there are many brilliant teachers out there, but it could be so much better.]
As a former High School teacher, I’d like to comment on this. In the US, schooling is already about profit, not education. Teachers are paid to entertain the kids to fill the seats, because each filled seat is $1800 of government money for the school’s owners, per class. Probably more now, as I’ve been out of it for a while.
And if you actually educate the kids, you get yelled at or fired. I used to get sent to the principal more often than the kids did, and got fired after I taught my computer class about how inflation works–prior to their economics debate. (Man, was she pissed at me–red in the face–you guys aren’t supposed to know how government steals your savings.) Another excellent teacher friend of mine got fired, just a couple years ago, for saying a student gave a wrong answer. Student was hurt, complained to parents, and parents complained to school. Fired the next day.
Heaven forbid you actually grade students on their work, so they can find out what needs improvement! In my day, we got percentage grades. These days, you can’t do that… the lowest “grade” you can give is BTU – “Beginning To Understand.” What a crock.
Dumping more money into teacher salaries will just give you a better class of entertainer–not a good education. These days, your best option is to teach yourself.
@vishnu: [haven’t watched “The Tomorrow People” but sounds great! what s it all about?]
It is about young people, in their teens and 20s, taking the next step in human evolution to become an ethical, spiritual man, complete with well-developed, psionic abilities–telepathy, telekinesis, teleportation (jaunting) and others. I was a teen back then, and this was one of those shows we raced home from school to watch.
The Tomorrow People had a different paradigm from the “saps” (homo sapiens)–peaceful to where they could not kill, even in self defense, and used rapport for common goals, rather than rivalry and competition (something I still hold true to this day).
For my generation, it represented the best that man could achieve. Though there were only a few Tomorrow People, it was the first step towards a better future. A lot of us tried to make that a reality, but ran into many of the same problems they had on the series.
I mention it here because that show has a new paradigm that could actually work, if the young generation was interested in it. My generation, unfortunately, was unable to pull it off–though some of us continue to try.
Hey Bruce! I didn’t mean to sound hasty in that last post; by autonomy I was simply referring to the rights of the individual to express themselves without fear of OPPRESSIVE rule. I’m all for structure in society, but there is definitely an imbalance between the government/citizen level. “For the people, by the people” should mean more than just voting for the lesser of two evils.
I understand the delusion of a self-governing utopia, but I honestly believe that human have the potential to achieve something very close to this, if the governing officials are actually on the same page. Ideally, it shouldn’t be a master/slave situation at all.
And to answer your question, people don’t need power over anyone else. What we really need is to awaken the power within ourselves, to understand the charade that is humanity. Plants and animals abide by the power of the law of the jungle/Darwinian struggle, but humans absolutely possess a higher potential than mere survival at all costs. We are super animals; let’s start living like it!
And to your second question; I don’t think anyone should be making decisions for anybody but themselves. It’s not the government’s place to tell me what I can and cannot put into my body, nor what kind of health insurance (if desired) I will opt into. The government should behave like a good moderator; stepping in only when there is an issue, and keeping law-abusers at bay. The current model treats citizens like they aren’t responsible enough to make true choices, so we have a babysitter situation.
Of course, most people ARE indeed ignorant, so this is half of the issue.
The problem is, we are now in a situation where the government just leverages EVERY issue as abuse/safety, then convinces the whole to submit freedoms under the guise of national security. THIS is what I am referring to in regards to the power ratio.
@Bruce… whoa…. wish that wasnt just a TV show :)
also, “you need a NEW paradigm, not a change to the existing one.” i cant quite grasp that… how do we create a new paradigm? you mean a new (parallel?) culture shud arise that exists independent of the current one? im seriously clueless here…
I think a big part of the problem is the lack of money in education. If teaching were a competitive industry, with kids being given engaging Ted Talk style lessons, it could be completely different, but many teachers are made to feel like failures, and that comes off in the teaching. Granted, there are many brilliant teachers out there, but it could be so much better.
@manimal Taking action takes many forms. Sometimes taking action means reaching out and trying to connect with someone who might have more power than you. Sometimes it might mean voting for the lesser of the 2 evils. It means different things to everyone, and the statement is very nonspecific.
Due to the fact that the power and responsibility HAS been given away, isn’t it worth it to attempt to sway them in directions that one thinks are morally less corrupt? I don’t think simply living a good life and not following the crowd is necessarily enough. The truth of the matter is, politicians (however corrupt they may be) DO get to make these decisions. And while some of these decisions are completely out of our control and out of their control, some are not. Making connections with people (and politicians ARE people) can make change.
And yes, I am informed of how bad the state of the world is. I assume that everyone on this site is trying to be as well.
(have to go to work and won’t be able to respond til later)
forgive the ignorance, but who decides the kind of education and syllabus to be taught thru school in the US?
in india we have 2 types of schools – govt, private. govt schools have govt syllabus and private schools follow Central Board of Secondary Education (cbse) syllabus. both suck. its just feeding information via textbooks and asking them to regurgitate onto the exam paper thrice a year. there. you got a pass. or a fail.
i think a lot can be done to the society’s world view (to make them more aware of what really matters, making them better human beings, and better planetary citizens) by changing school level education. those folks up at these educaTion boards shud have a revamp.
please please please check this link i give you. its about A.S.Neil’s (experimental) school called Summerhill. this shud how schools shud be like… he has written a book on his school too. change is fuckin possible: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Summerhill_School
with that Nicholas Cotton! if a teacher’s job is considered as important as a scientist’s or a researcher’s then we automatically start getting better, passionate teachers at all levels of education. teaching is one of the most important jobs in all respects: parents teach, teachers teach and we teach ourselves everyday. its no ordinary job! and thats wat we’re downplaying. sigh.
here’s a better way for schools to be run. this also goes with the autonomous power Jason was tokin about: classes shud be made free to attend/ not to. an attendance shud not be taken. that way students will automatically gravitate towards the classes (ted style, love it!) of awesome teachers, and the not so great ones can be weeded out. every student shud also be able to express their opinions towards each class… that way, students are no longer made to ‘sit’ in a class just like how the govt. tells us wat to do.
@Jason… the whole power-slavery thing… completely agree. we are so conditioned into it all we can barely think outside of it. ”Of course, most people ARE indeed ignorant, so this is half of the issue.” the truth is that an astounding number of people want to do something about all this (even though they may not have clarity on what to do)… many of us give up when we see the magnitude of change that is to be brought thinking thats too much. but we sure are not completely deluded by the sweet talk of those in power. my point is that active discussions should be made in order to reach a consensus of all those who want to fight the system. i’m not talking placards and protests, that is just temporary resistance. what i think is we need to have an organised group of people who agree upon the same things (like we’re talking here) wanting the same result (of evening out the power ratio)…. emphasis on ‘same’.. other wise there wud be internal conflict. if such a group of ppl so much as come together, it will be enough to show those in ‘power’ that we are not complete robots that cant think and act outside of the little cage they’ve built for us..
does that make sense, or is it the same thing as repairing the old amplifier, and working within the current paradigm??
@Jason [that was the best thing I’ve read all morning ]
I just found your web site… best thing I’ve read all morning.
@vishnu: there are 3 types of schools here, public (government, curricula decided by the National Education Association), private religious (decided by church, but heavily influenced by NEA), and private corporate (in it for the government money, so “by the book”). I will check out your link.
I attended Catholic school, and got an excellent education from the brothers and sisters, because it was their vocation–they didn’t get paid to teach, they did it because they enjoyed it. Perhaps the solution is to REDUCE teacher’s salaries–that way, you’ll only get people with a passion for teaching!
@Bruce; fantastic and enlightening post; your words only confirm my intuition about my generation. I like to refer to it as “generation immune”. I am confident that this generation will be the one to smooth out the power ratio, and at least establish freedom and autonomy for those with the knowledge and responsibility to wield it.
@Vishnu; a paradigm leap is the key, but the transition is very sketchy and will most likely leave A LOT of people confused. Anyone who’s consciously aware will perceive it as a blessing, and those who rely on the current system will perceive it as an apocalypse. But, just like a birth is messy, painful and excruciating; new life waits on the other side.
I’m with Manimal on this one; too many people wait around thinking lots of people need to agree and force change. Take the initiative and be the spark that creates the fire; people by nature follow, so BE the change you want to see in the world. The only reason things are messed up is because people are FOLLOWING; show them there is a better way to follow!
For me all the very valid points in this thread can be summed up into one very telling quote.
“If we believe absurdities, we shall commit atrocities.” -Voltaire
If we believe our best interest our in mind in the current poitical system, well that is just absurd. 90% of folks in western culture have no valid clue of what their best interest even is, or more importantly should be, so they ask for hand outs, and bitch about what they bitched to get. Bitches.
I’m not sure about anyone else is doing, or thinks would be effective, but my friend who’s coming home from living in the Netherlands and me are going to produce a pamphlet of sorts describing 10 elements of the human conditon that are in dire straits. Fracking, Monetary system, GMO’s, Genocides, etc. Any insight into what is critically important will be considered. There is so much wrong with the world that it’s easy to forget all that’s fucked up.
I’m in the brainstorming process as far as format and length, but I want it to be short enough to be easily apsorbed, but informative enough to make an impact. We are going to stand in busy areas of downtown Cincinnati while folks are funneling in and out of special events and baseball games, and hand them out, and possibly have them sign petitions for various causes.
Thank you for posting that beast Manimal; took the words right out of my mouth. I always laugh at protesters because they are still playing by the oppressors rules; quietly complaining standing in the cold, asking for permission to be heard. Give me a break.
Protesting is like putting a bandaid over a gunshot wound. Real change lies in TAKING ACTION. Protesting is NOT taking action; protesting is merely complaining while complying with the rules of the system that is oppressing you. You want real change? Stop shopping at chains, buy all your food from local farmers and convert to solar power. Oh wait, that takes effort : (
This thread rules guys!
yup, i need help here too. the answer to this (not step by step practical, but indeed possible) that i came up with is Global Consciousness. tht sounds like a distant possibility, but it need not have to be that grand a thing, doesnt have to be the ‘next evolutionary step’…
here’s wats in my head; MY PLAN IS THUS:
if u look at it, a lot of us are brainwashed; im not tokin about the whole we are made consumers by the producers thing at all. im saying, most of us function in life a certain way, and a few common threads can be seen.
what creates this is for a large part, i think, education in institutions. not the primary factor but a huge one. we are taught materialistic things about life in school and there the first brainwashing occurs. this whole chain is put into us really early: why study, so u can get a job, y that, so u can survive, and then die. you have to work and live for urself, and pretty much the whole world is gona shit on your head while you try.
and then we start to realise theres so much more to all this than that, and nbody ever teaches us that, so, its all thot of in the background by every store clerk and CEO, but no action is taken.
now, what if we are taught these things. what if in a eutopian world, we are educated better on the importance of compassion and that the world is a peaceful place, not all that horror and terror that the news mindfucks u with.
if a whole generation is taught with a universal syllabus that prioritizes on being a better human being, wudnt the future be a better place?
we already hav global consciousness, its just fucked up right now. and a LOT of us wanna make it right. with a collective organised effort i think WE CAN
@Josh; your activism is a great idea; those pamphlets sound awesome. My commitment is most obviously through ThinkNowLiveNow; getting those people whom Vishnu mentions are “on the edge”, but just can’t seem to get past the emotional barriers of overwhelming odds. Living a better life for yourself inspires you to help others achieve a similar quality of life.
@Vishnu; I really dig the idea of optional attendance. Modern schooling is essentially academic socialism, whereby classrooms are set by age instead of intellectual capacity, and the stupid kids bring everyone down with them. Yes, I understand we have special placement classes for advanced students, but these classes only exist to further groom the smart yet gullible kids into certain roles in society.
If they had the option to show up, it would then behave more like natural selection; kids with passion for knowledge will get ahead, while the kids who prefer over-socializing will pay natural consequences instead of being rewarded for it.
@Eric; I have no idea how I missed your post on this page; absolute brilliance. Terence McKenna is somewhere off in hyperspace applauding your post at the top of this page : )