As you read this, I am on a backpack trip near what some consider to be the most remote area in the lower forty-eight. Come election night, I will be miles from civilization without any access to technology that could possibly clue me in on the events of the evening. Instead, I will be celebrating my camping partner’s birthday in the world’s first designated wilderness area. It will be as if the election never happened. When I eventually walk out of the reality known as wilderness, I will re-enter the fairytale known as the The Culture of Make Believe. Then I will observe the aftermath of the ongoing fantasy we call our lives. It’s a privilege to temporarily escape madness but one I cherish at this point.
Currently, there is plenty of hand-wringing as folks work themselves into a lather by consuming massive amounts of propaganda disguised as legitimate information. The fabricated struggle of who will lead this dysfunctional nation will end with a victor as we all continue to lose. No matter who takes the crown, business as usual will continue and we will turn our eyes upon the next shiny spectacle set before us.
A year from now, we will still have troops stationed throughout the world. We will still have drone strikes and will not blink an eye when civilians die. We will still have an enormous military budget. We will still have corporate greed and crime. We will still have black men dying at the hands of white cops. We will still pursue fossil fuels at all costs. We will still have football on Saturday and Sunday and Costco will still be open. More importantly, we will still be repeating the same dysfunctional pattern, hoping for a different result.
In other words, insanity will still remain the status quo.
If we can observe what happens this November 8th instead of simply reacting to it, then we can begin to recognize the pattern within our minds. It’s a repetitive story in which we convince ourselves that we are on the right side of history and others are on the wrong side. It’s an old story that has been repeated throughout civilized human history. Pick a leader and then follow them into madness. The consequence of believing our story is the cycle of dysfunction that we continually encounter. It’s like Groundhog Day.
As we line up again for the polls, a sense of déjà vu may come over us. The narrative of I’m right and you’re wrong is for those who will continue to suffer by giving life to it in their heads. If change is to occur, then moving beyond our story is imperative. Observing the madness instead of being part of the circus can do wonders. After all, the shit in our heads is only providing evidence that what we are trying to control has never, in fact, worked. It’s all a negotiating tactic. Control is an illusion. The story we tell ourselves about ourselves is how we try and control the world around us. It’s what separates us and consequently causes suffering.
Enjoy the show by remembering it’s just a show. Reality is what we’re avoiding by participating in such a production. If you’re paying attention at all and are able to see beyond the shiny distraction of this election you’ll begin to notice many actual struggles that are taking place against such sociopathic leadership. In Standing Rock, North Dakota people (including children and elders) are facing down tanks. Yes, tanks! These tanks and the insatiable lust for power are the repercussions of living a lie and avoiding the present moment. No leader will ever save us. Besides, we may not be worth saving if we continue to deny the truth of the situation we are in.
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