The End of Existential Angst or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Liberal Conservative in Me


Surface friction

Those who descended from the beings that populated what we know today as Africa may view their origin as inauspicious which may have resulted in evolutionary shame. Remember, it was their ancestors who stayed behind and endured the eternal summer with its two climatic distinctions—hot and wet and the wet was far from reliable. This instability coupled with the constant solar onslaught created a landscape that can be a bit trying at times. No wonder some of us chose to leave home and head north where we stumbled upon more temperate climates. I wonder if this created a self-loathing amongst those who stayed—a negative sense of self that would be later influenced by the poor treatment at the hands of the temperate-dwellers when they returned. This may have contributed to the doggedly religious and uber-conservative dynamic that we see “highlighted” in popular media today. I wrote that earlier as “dominates black popular culture,” but then I realized I have no real way of knowing that. I just felt that way in response to constantly hearing this (not in these words, but this is the implication I gleaned):

“You must be like us or else you will suffer like the ones that were left behind.”

Is this pandering to a status-quo because of fear and self-hatred or is it the acknowledgment of a blessing via a sacrifice? Were slavery and the subsequent ravaging of the African continent by Europeans punishment for staying behind? A punishment they had to endure before they could be freed and welcomed to the spoils of the temperate dwellers? Come on in, let’s explore. Oh, and be warned…adult language ahead.

THE FEAR OF ONE

Interestingly, divergent figures like MLK and Michael Jackson were wrought from this phenomenon. However, instead of celebrating a homogeneous unit predicated on acceptance, not acquiescence to a particular group. But a diverse group united by a common interest. The common interest is, as corny as it sounds, love. What does love lead to? Sharing, dividing up the wealth. The conservative side who represents a society’s security and insurance policy wants to hold on to its wealth. How dare the government try to take it. The Tea Party movement is attempting to align itself with the “soul” of the moneyed conservatives. They’re like foot soldiers and figures who best know how to galvanize them will be quite successful…

The snarky criticism directed at this movement comes across as a tad dismissive, but as we should all know quite well, dismissing counter-culture movements only helps to strengthen their resolve. Oftentimes the criticism is expected and the driving force behind the movement…

“If WE do this, THEY will say that. Watch…I’ll show you how THEY ‘really’ feel about US. For I have traveled amongst THEM. I know how THEY really work because I know THEIR soul. Watch how riled up a couple words makes ’em.”

It shows an enlightenment within a group of people used to define myopia. They remain fearful of the ‘now’ all the damn time. But look at what protest they continuously evoke. The Tea Party. That ol’ Tea Party that went down in gritty Boston and those cats even possessed an Adult Swim-like interpretation of the world because they had the audacity to send-up a British tradition…the old tea party…finger dangling and all that. Some nerve! The British responded with the fisticuffs.

We have not been like the British while being like the British…I know it sounds a bit convoluted, but they represent America’s old soul, once defeated as an empire and then later taken down by a young whipper-snapper who had the audacity to fight them while wearing the same damn wigs! Some nerve! This old soul gains strength through its acceptance of diversity. But it still maintains its ‘Britishness.’ You got black dudes over there with last names like Boateng who proudly call themselves British gentleman. What? And then you have Idris Elba over here fooling everybody, had us convinced he’s American (even American black people who should be able to spot an air of ‘Britishness’ in a man’s voice. There’s even an element of Brit-humor in that clip.), then he pulled a fast one on us. Iss bloke es uh blud-ee Brit-isch Gent-oo-mun! Well, that was kind of Cockney, but so what, I hope you get the point.

We saw a very similar thing happen in the 60s when MLK publicly advocated non-violent reactions to aggression. By publicly announcing this he did two things—he acknowledged white’s fear of black aggression and offered a solution through aggressively not fighting back even when provoked beyond normal limits. In essence it counters an irrational fear with absurdity—almost Monty Python-esque. To advocate peaceful responses to unprovoked violence has always seemed utterly ridiculous to us yet this principal is a major driving force in our lives. It’s the desire to get up each day. Bad stuff has happened, but I want to go forward with a smile on my face. That’s the only way I’m going to be able to cope and enjoy this existence.

People who advocate this idea seem to randomly “pop” into existence here and there and then they are taken out. Following their assassinations their messages seem to resonate louder. During their lives they magnetically attract followers as well as curious skeptics. It is the absurdity of the message that draws so much attention.

“Wait a minute…what’s this? That’s crazy, but I kind of dig it. It’s just the message I was looking for, but didn’t know I was looking for. Huh? Wow.”

…or…

“Wait a minute…what’s this? That’s crazy!!! I do not understand this message. Do nothing when someone attacks you. Well, not nothing, but the completely opposite thing…I’m supposed to love the man who knocks my teeth out? That sounds pretty damn gay. I’m not with that.”

Then the figure, who banged into existence like a radiant star, is taken out by someone acting on the uncertain impulses of their curiosity. “I’m not with ‘that.'” becomes “‘That’ can’t be.” But the message has already been released to the world. Much like how a dandelion spreads its seeds and then dies before those seeds become radiant flowers. Flowers so ubiquitous they are a nuisance to us. They invade our green lawns so we take them out. These little bright yellow flowers that reproduce genetic copies of themselves. They are extremely evolutionarily fit…they’re conservatives…

What? Wait a minute…

I thought I was making a relationship between dandelions and non-violent movements and somehow ended up describing the conservative dynamic. This is what the universe does to attempts at comprehensive explanations. Renders them absurd. So much for a polarity. More like a Venn diagram. We’ll go a little deeper…

This…

…is not much different than this…

Both are refrabications of natural elements created through molding and twisting the earth. Even fragmenting it and blending it together to create ‘synthetic‘ materials like the one we’re both using right now to create and then later view this. Sorry, back on track, the major difference between us and them is the rate of change between the two. While we experimented with man building techniques the termites remained pretty consistent…pretty conservative in their social order. But it seems it works out for them, they maintain an existence. No cars, iPads, sewing machines, Nintendo Wiis all wrought from universal debris, but they get on. They’ve been in their current form longer than we have been in ours. They’re grooving, much like the rest of life on this planet…including us…we just groove like this…

We think we’re switching it up constantly…from Druids to Moors to investment bankers…it’s just a mess of constant change. It is the human distinction. It’s why we think we are set apart from the rest of the universe. It is only our perception that drives this. We know how to perceive our manufactured world because we created it,just as the termite understands how to perceive their manufactured world. Tricky bit is we understand how it works, but only via the method we perceive our world. A termite isn’t a termite to a termite. We actually have no idea how termites perceive themselves, we just know they do because they don’t invite ants to their parties.

“MOVING” FORWARD

Yeah, I know, so here and here…hope that satiates your appetite…but check this out and this…happy now?…okay, let’s get to it…

The conservative keeps his foot on the brakes like the termite. No need to keep on looking for another place to settle down. We’re good here…unless…the here is a liberal enclave, then it’s time to fly. Too much diversity. Then the liberal element comes out later as liberal leaders persist in demanding equal housing rights much to the chagrin of the established conservative element.

“Damn it!!! I thought we got away from them. I’ve really had it up to here with all of this progress. Why do they think it’s so damn necessary? Can’t we just relax for a minute. Hold onto some traditional values. Why do we have to redefine them every three seconds? I’m gettin’ old. I’m gettin’ tired.”

So the conservative, once again, has to relinquish their neighborhood to the liberal’s most prized asset: the minority. Or more accurately, a grouping of diverse minorities as one unit or voting block.

“I will fight for you against the racism of the white majority. They want to see you fail while I want to see you succeed for your success leads to mine. I can do one of two things: galvanize you to rise out of the position whites have put you in or I can keep you controlled through social programs and ensure your vote. Hmmm…which method shall I choose? There is a risk that if you rise from your current position you may turn into those conservative types. I know their spirit burns in the pit of your stomach. You lot aren’t too keen on the gays marrying and I’ve seen how many churches you have in your communities. Helluva battle being waged there. Your music defines American swagger, yet you seem to be deathly afraid of your ‘worldly’ selves.”

These dynamics get tied up in knots as they aggressively fight to maintain a polarity. We call moving in either direction progress, but we’re really not going anywhere. Our experience as humans is a rapid sprinting away from our roots by virtue of relentless relativity building or creation. Everything we create comes with its own team of specialists. Just take a car for example. As a whole unit, there are many who appreciate it and then there are people who specialize in tires, transmission systems, shock plugs and the relatively diverse list goes on and on. We cannot stop creating. This creation is what distances us from the “animal world.” But really, the more we advance the more we become in touch with it. Our “digital” revolution is exposing a truth we’ve always known. Getting back…

Relativity removes us from the truth, but the natural ebb and flow of evolution will always bring us back so in a way it’s like we never left. Where did the Europeans go to find a source of cheap labor who could endure the scorching heat? A labor force that would be incredibly necessary to “progress” their civilizations to the next level. They went back “home” to save themselves. Once slavery became passé we saw the rise of white liberal guilt. A celebration of all things deep, soulful (you see who made that sound? no, really. yeah. wow is right. sorry, referenced the contents of a hyperlink there.) and a deep-seated desire to “understand” the origin of such pathos. The irony of course is that it was the exploitative curiosity that lead to the intellectual curiosity. Even more ironic is the fact that this…

…is a marriage of this…

…and this…

The blues are that middle portion of the Venn Diagram and the above two musical forms are just a fraction of its influence. Every single physical thing or nebulous idea started in fragments, the fragments merge and create the illusion of a solid entity, but the illusory fusion is quickly awakened from its nap…and then the long infinite journey awaits…but don’t worry, there will be more rest stops…an infinity of them to be exact.

There is no time only space. What we call time is how we perceive this illusory rest. For a spell things seem to sit still. We take notice, start counting off a beat. 1…2…3…4…5…and then something happens…

and then….1…2…3…4…5…

It happens again, but wait a minute…I look different now. Something happened. Sure did. We went for a helluva ride…

Just spinnin’ around as we fall through space like a speck of dust.

MARXY MARX AND THE BLACKLISTED BUNCH

“If we have chosen the position in life in which we can most of all work for mankind, no burdens can bow us down, because they are sacrifices for the benefit of all; then we shall experience no petty, limited, selfish joy, but our happiness will belong to millions, our deeds will live on quietly but perpetually at work, and over our ashes will be shed the hot tears of noble people.” -Karl Marx, “Letter to His Father”

The philosophies espoused by the MLKs of the world are often deemed socialist in many circles hence black “community leaders” constantly being compared to communist leaders. The communist/socialist tag tend be a knee-jerk rection as it is guaranteed to rile nerves. These terms aren’t inherently bad, it’s just that Highlander jive…there can only be one dominate ism, all others must be demonized.

It seems to be accepted by the status-quo one has to pander to it, but what if you have no desire to that Faustian deal: “Give us your soul and we’ll grant you acceptance into our club.” The irrational fear some have of Freemasonry, paganism, alternative religions and freethinkers seems to stem from this idea…these folks refuse to accept the “deal.”

“What is this talk about determining one’s own road to God? No way. Our ancestors didn’t suffer so that you can freely pick your path to peace. You have to ascribe to one of these religions and not just one, but the RIGHT one. That was the deal we made. Our souls for a passage to heaven. I guess we need to improve our sales techniques.”

Maybe this explains why the Gandhis, MLKS, JFKs and John Lennons of the world end up getting killed. We don’t want to renege on the terms of our deal. Some may say these figures lost their lives because they were preaching against the word of God, but what if these people represent the infinite return of the sacrificial spirit. It’s Jesus, it’s Horus, Dionysus, et al. Selfless figures who in essence repeatedly die for our sins. But their messages are not drowned out by the gun blasts. The dream always endures. It’s the “I may not get there with you, but WE will get there” that I spoke of earlier. One day a civilization will “get there” and instead of believing that the ultimate day of judgment will come in their lifetime they will concentrate more on what they can do for the next generation to come. This is the painless sacrifice…because all it takes is living and loving…and the beautiful thing is we can do it right here, right now, in our lifetime…will we do it? Or are there more witch trials and Inquisitions to come?

“YOU’RE THE ANTICHRIST!!!” “I KNOW YOU ARE BUT WHAT AM I?”

So who’s really the “devil” here? Fear is. The devil is the cultural manifestation of a universal phenomenon. That beast of burden that keeps us at the base of the mountain. We can see the peak, but we’re just too afraid to climb it. I’m not exempt, I’m fighting my fears everyday. I used to be terrified of deeply religious people. I once thought they preached hate with a smile on their face. It seemed so cruel to me that a group of people would fight so hard to disallow the freedoms of others so that they could reach salvation. There goes that deal-making business again….selling your soul and trying to get others to sell theirs for a personal reward without any regard for how you may be messing up the other person’s life or your own. But now, I realize that the fear-mongering is carried out by the most fearful…

THE LIVING DEAD

“Building Blocks” by Kumi Yamashita

None of us wants to die, but we know it is inevitable so we cut these deals so that we’re ensured eternal life. Eternal life is guaranteed, but the nature of that eternal life is based on our experience right here. Within you resides an infinite spirit…it’s called DNA…you are nothing but an amalgam of everyONE that came before you. Your hair, your skin color, your eyes, personality traits—direct results of an evolutionary journey, a journey influenced by climate and interaction with the world around you. Your life is an illusion, you are nothing but a spirit, a spirit that will live forever. When our matter breaks down it returns and literally drives evolution…

THE GARDEN OF EDEN

Tanzania

“Was this land our collective earliest memory?”

The place where we knew of no relativity. Everything was curious. No, I don’t think you hear me. Every single last thing! As adults we cannot place ourselves back to early childhood when we we found the world infinitely curious. We’ve already categorized a lot of the world around us. Once things were clusters of wonder, now they’re dense groupings. Frank, Ed and Johnny become White People. A rose, a tulip, a daisy become Flowers. As children the universe is disparate, particulate. notice how babies immediately place objects into a diversely sensitive area…their mouths. Touch and sight do not satisfy our curiosity. We need to know what it’s really all about and our parents tell us to stop because it isn’t safe. Then we’re left to wonder how this ingenious way of categorizing matter could ever backfire. How elves would you find out about things? And as we grow we continue to wonder what the adults were so afraid of and then we figure it ourselves when we become one, another cluster becoming a dense ball. Why is everything bad? evolves into a defeated Oh, that’s why. All right, I’ll stay away from it. Where does this come from? How does the experience of so few affect so many? Not everybody does this…

…but stuff like this…

…terrifies us. How are these messages being transfered. Well, maybe, the same way this blog’s contents are being transfered to your eyes. Tiny digits of matter. A moderate force that creates false dualities only to later expose them for the fraud they are when they fail to learn the lesson of their differences. That basic distinction inevitably attracts them to one another. The closer they get the more energy builds up as some moderates expose themselves quickly and run to the center. Both moderate forces rushing to the center from both sides creates an incredibly dense link between the quickly joining opposites. With a subtle virtually invisible force they bring the two together. If they force the “false poles” to join too quickly an uncomfortable friction builds as they are brought together and the sudden shock of it riles them up a bit. Each side was doing their own thing, they knew about each other, just not ready to mix…yet.

But then a force brings them together and they live forever. This all happens by virtue of an initial sacrifice (surface friction). Hard-liners give in to their quickly expanding moderate side. As this happens others dig in their heals. No budging. They’re gonna stay staunchly this or that. This is what creates the tension within the group. It starts to fragment. And before you know it, it’s all racing to the center. Now imagine 360 degrees of matter converging on this center. A planet would seem to blossom like a flower, but in 360 degrees. In order to wrap your head around this you would have to perceive “the distance” we call billions upon billions of years as seconds. Disparate matter converges to a central point and a sphere blossoms. From seemingly nothing. Only an infinite universe can “create” that.

And those stars, radiantly shining. The matter that creates them must have to smash together much faster than the matter that forms planets. They must come from far off places in order to build up that kind of speed…they are a miracle of “timing.” Matter has to collide form all directions at the same time constantly. So frequently that it would almost hold the position of the evolving mass in one place. As it would start to fall, 360 degrees of matter would smash into it and keep it locked in place temporarily. Something like this could only be perceived of as light. It is trying to subvert progress or slow down time if you’re still buyin’ into the tick-tock game. Since space is infinite in 360 degrees matter naturally falls. No bottom. but since there is no bottom it really is just staying in one place. I know, it’s tricky, but it’s kind of like this…

A star’s evolution is essentially trying to slow down the wheel. Essentially, it’s trying to to do this…


This video is loaded. Wow. You can see the nascent stages of where pop music is today as the both groups began to influences each other more openly and with grace. In this video you also see how this came about.

By staying still in space a piece of matter proves that space is denser than it seems. There is something to rest on. But of course this resting place is illusory because it takes a constant barrage of matter slamming into a central point. This confused vibrating mess is perceived as light by us. We’ve always found this force fascinating. We founded our cultures based on interpreting the dance these glowing orbs do in the sky…

As they fight to stay in relative place we are the ones who do all the leg work, spinnin’ round and round alleviating some of our own star’s tension with the help of some buddies who spin around it a relatively different speeds. It’s as if we all have a part to play. This company of diverse dancers trying to keep the big yellow guy happy. Gotta keep this routine goin’ just right, or else…

The planets moderate the sun or “worship” it if you want to get all dime store profound in here. But every once and awhile the nucleus fires a shot from deep. One of those anomalies that goes bang…

Of course this is the result of our atmosphere gettin’ along relatively well with the sun’s buckshot. But sometimes it’s a direct hit that our atmosphere cannot moderate…

We exist inside our star. It’s radiance is dense, but invisible to our eyes. We feel its heat and see its light. But the ball we see in the sky is the nucleus of our solar system. The radiance that we are all wrapped in is like a spherical wall around us. In essence the solar system is a cell that occupies an arm of a larger body—our galaxy.

Now think about all the energy being created by the diverse life on this one little blue speck of our grand cell. We are born, we consume the planet’s flesh, we create waste, it mixes up with other particulate bits, we die, our bits break down and go back to where they came from different than when they started out. This is that liberal/conservative force that drive evolution ad infinitum. It’s the ebb and flow…

Just speculating folks…that’s all…hope you had fun.
















I’M A RABBIT IN YOUR HEADLIGHTS NOT SCARED OF THE SPOTLIGHT

We can kill what what we fear, but it will return unless we find a new way to deal with it. It starts with admitting that we are afraid. That is the initial sacrifice that begets the expansion.

Here let me make one first…I’m black on the surface, but I feel Afro-Caribbean British Northeastern Native Western American. Yeah, it’s weird…and the order can be switched up any which way—no matter how you plug the data into the computer it shoots out American. Yeah, it’s a weird place, but I dig it. This crazy place where where Greek tragedy-esque literal battles between brothers happen and give way to a painful finger-wagging of sorts. “See what all this fighting gets you? No where! Stop it! Now, let’s recess and you go and deliberate on what you think you should do next.”

When America fights the world it fights against the very fragments that created it and made it so ridiculously influential in such a short period of time. The broader world is our greatest strength. We sample from it like hip hop artists. Look at those strip malls in upper middle class suburbs. The restaurant names read like some sort of festive trading center. It’s Roman in it’s breadth, but kind of silly in it’s execution…there’s joints called “Zany Zanzibar and Grill” and other assorted playfully sardonic craziness. We go to these places to eat sushi while watching football games. The tension between the US and The Rest comes from America’s need to be recognized as more than just the sum of its parts but as a united country as its title suggests…actually, nothing “suggestive” about that. These fragments are united. Other countries view this internal battle as kind of humorous. Like a teenager suffering through an incredible bout of angst. It’s funny to the grown-ups who’ve been around longer than us. They’ve seen that, they’ve done that. In a way their curiously skewed awareness sees through our BS. I can just picture the Old Country saying this

“Okay, you’ve goofed up again. Now please just get it sorted, I’ll help when I can because we have work to do. No time for any messy fighting. Have some tea, but damn, why do you people have to put so much damn sugar in it? Oh, and treat our curious little experiment a little better. We planted that seed for a reason. And hey, you guys are really quite beautiful like you say, sorry, sing. No seriously, really beautiful like all of our fancy European stuff. You thought we rocked your world with something new…but really…we were just giving it back to you.”


I love how Craig says “WE invented Coke!” in his thick Scottish brogue. America, the effin’ beautiful.

Earlier I spoke about American temerity which is simply this: I will borrow what I want from you culturally, but I have my own culture. What is it? It’s everyone’s…all mixed up, but tightly packed together. Don’t get it twisted, I’m not mixed up. I’m united. Sounds like a cocky kid trying to psyche himself up before a fight. But that’s been how we’ve been getting on. We always gotta to be ready for a fight and we know how to prepare ourselves for one.

When you’re on top you have haters everywhere and they want nothing but to bring you down. Gotta show ’em you’re not weak. You got guns to spare…rockets right there…no one can compare. But after awhile they stop trying to pick fights with you. No more hate. They actually like you and want to see you do well. As a country we’ve been getting by on arrogance. We win, dance in the endzone. But why do we have to keep winning these wars in order more than prove that we’re more than just talk? Can’t we just do something else? Maybe view our states as “states.” Each with their own personality and flavor, broken up by cities possessing the same traits, broken up by different communities, and those communities broken up by neighborhoods, and those neighborhoods broken up into us. Local level. Ground level. Individual—each with our own personality and flavor. But notice how we rise right back up when we realize we’re part of a unit. Just turn on the TV. YOUR team is beating THEIR team in OUR league. Pulling off such a fragmented unity is a wondrous feat and somehow Americans do it more often than not.

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3 Responses to “The End of Existential Angst or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Liberal Conservative in Me”



  1. 1 The Art of “Or”: A Football Dream « Tricky Relativity Trackback on September 9, 2010 at 3:59 am
  2. 2 Peace One Day | Meditations Trackback on September 22, 2010 at 10:46 am
  3. 3 More Pi Please… « Tricky Relativity Trackback on September 22, 2010 at 7:56 pm

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