Home About The Shifting Daniel David Joseph Blog Teachings Poetry Music Images Dreams Contact
The Shifting 2 With the end of every human epoch, “huge tumbling boulders” of unfocused human energy are loosed into the world. Some of these take on a progressive form: the Arab Spring; the Black Lives Matter movement; the movement for marriage and gender equality; the movement for economic justice … and some a form that can only be described as reactionary: ISIS; the Tea Party; Donald Trump. In this environment leaders will inevitably appear, both selfless and narcissistic who would use that energy either for good or for ill. Indeed, with regard to the latter, it is at such times that we see the rise of the demagogue who targets the might of the human flood in order to lift themselves up on the tide of prejudice and hate. They are masters at justifying selfishness, at cloaking weakness in strength, at posing heroic, at getting people to see them as they see themselves however delusional that might be. Word of the Dream "A lot of people have false confidence. They are confident in their fantasy of themselves, in a self-image they create which isn't real, which is but an illusion, rather than confident in their true self, in who they actually are." The demagogue seeks to provide the unmoored souls who feed the flood with a sense of belonging, protection, confidence and superiority. They do this not because of a desire to help their followers, who are merely the tools they use to satisfy an insatiable lust for power and praise, become more whole, but because in offering up the scapegoat the movements they guide inevitably conjure, be it religious, ethnic, sexual or otherwise, both leaders and followers are able to project the repressed contents of their own unconscious, onto the “darkness” of the other, to “cleanse’ themselves of whatever it is in their unconscious they are unable to accept. Today, collective cross projection of this type is occurring on both sides of the Muslim/Non-Muslim divide as evidenced in the religio-fascist movements led by the unholy ISIS on the one hand and the despicable Donald Trump on the other.  I dream a dream in which I see a group of Muslim people gathered on one side of a chasm. They are facing away and I'm only able to see their backs at 1st. They all have long, black hair and I presume they are women. However, when they turn around I see that while some are women, there are also children, old men and young people of both sexes in the group. On the other side of the chasm people I think of as non-Muslim congregate. They line up facing the Muslims who are opposite them. The non-Muslims are holding guns and missiles. At that point someone taps me on the shoulder and referring to the dream says: "It's your song." For instance, by counteracting the sense of impotence experienced by those who perceive a loss of power in the basic categories of being (race, religion, sexuality, gender and national identity), which, for many Americans are the only things, in addition to vocation, which provide a sense of worth, with a promise of renewed dominance and strength be it of a military, economic or cultural nature, which is to say with a promise to “Make America Great Again,” Trump (and others of his ilk) is really promising to return the sense of power, self-worth and exceptionalism many Americans enjoyed when their religion, their definition of gender, their sexual preference, their race were experienced by them and recognized by society at large as dominant and superior. Whatever the context, the group-mind or “mob mentality” demonstrated by the followers of the modern demagogue constitutes a morally dangerous condition. At least in the most extreme cases, with regard to those who heed the insidious, neo-fascist rallying cry of such as Mr. Trump, identification with the favored group, a subset of racial, religious, sexual and national identity as traditionally or conservatively defined, largely replaces the more autonomous sense/experience of self/individuality enjoyed by the/those who are “uninfected” by the fascist pathology. Indeed, these people sacrifice the autonomy which enables independent thinking for the confidence and empowerment which comes from subsuming themselves in a force that seems larger and more powerful than their own broken psyche. Perhaps it is because, for some individuals, a stable sense of self always depended, to a certain degree upon a concomitant notion of superiority, that they are vulnerable in the first place to manipulation of this kind. Indeed, this is the reason why there are people who participate in, belong to and in some ways benefit from the mainstream who can ultimately transcend it, who are able to recognize the limitations and injustices which time eventually reveals, while others live in a state of permanent denial and stagnation. One can only hope that once the ice bergs are melted, the floods receded, there will be a garden left for planting. To those who believe that because the level of religious and social conflict appears to be intensifying, the world is further away than ever from realizing the seemingly unattainable promise of unity and peace, we who are of the House of We present the following for your consideration:   We are living in a time of revolution, world-wide planetary revolution... a time of "huge tumbling boulders," a time of shifting, a time of change. Half in the old, half in the new, at the end of yesterday, at the beginning of tomorrow, we live for the moment, in two houses, and though they have a single foundation, one is in a state of collapse and the other in the midst of being born. Until that new house replaces the old, becomes more stable and more clear, until people learn to trust it, to realize that instead of threatening them it will nourish and protect them as never before, there are those among us who will cling to the status quo with a fury that originates not as they claim in the depth of their faith, in their love of Jesus, in their reverence for the constitution (“God, Guns and Gravy”) but in their fear, understandable but uncalled-for of change.
Two of Eight