Patriarchy, The Root of Civilization

Two concepts that have shaped the brunt of human existence are civilization and patriarchy, the former being discussed much more frequently than the latter. The two are intertwined however, in a death-spiral that gains velocity with every painful moment they persist in our world. For a concept as prominent as civilization, people have trouble defining what it is. ” An advanced state of human society, in which a high level of culture, science, industry, and government has been reached.”, this is a common yet biased definition. ‘Advanced’ and ‘high level’ indicate that the institution of civilization as we know it is on a positive course. I see much evidence to the contrary.

Modern human civilization can be summed up in one word, domination. Domination over our environment, our neighbors, friends, family, and selves. This culture of dominance is taught to us as children, by our family. The patriarchal system is present in the home, it often emerges as a Hegelian master and slave relationship between mother and father. This behavior is absorbed by children, no matter how subtle, and sets the mold for how the individual relates to others. It leads to our society’s unhealthy obsession with competition and aggressiveness. It manifests itself as war, exploitation, and egotism.

I want to emphasize that I do not suggest that the solution is matriarchy, that system is also characterized by dominance only with the genders reversed in terms of power. What we need is a balance. We need to learn the meaning of partnership. When we do this we will recognize that we must respect the liberty of others in order to achieve freedom for ourselves. We will understand the complex relationships that exist within and without. When we finally learn these lessons, which we knew to be true all along, we can at last end the relentless destruction present in the world. In its place will emerge celebration of life and a deep happiness that we can not even begin to comprehend in our present state.


The Enemy

The most difficult wars in our brief historical memory have been those fought against ill defined foes. When those that seek to defeat you cloak themselves in unfamiliar guises it can make the process of aim difficult; and strategy, nearly impossible. The United States faced this very dilemma in the sweltering jungles of Vietnam. Confusion ran so deep that innocent became indistinguishable from foe, even in the familiar territory of Ohio.

The same confusion grips us today. The ambiguously named ‘War on Terror’ has declared everybody suspect. The result has been a climate of fear that pits us against one another in a type of pseudo nationalistic thunderdome in which survival depends upon who can prove themselves the most patriotic. In the midst of this conflict It seems the definition of patriotism has split, with one faction insisting that it means obeying the government and another insisting it means defending the principals of the constitution. This war however is nothing but a fanciful charade, elaborately planned and executed in order to divert our attention away from the true enemy.

While we turn on one another, squabbling about petty inaccurate trivialities, the so called ‘elite’ of the nation are plundering the people of their wealth and liberty. Over the past seven years we have seen the exponential growth of corporatism and a corresponding decline in working class income. We have seen examples of¬† corporations granted new sweeping powers in collusion with the government. In this new environment telecommunications companies are free to record the private data of individuals and the world’s largest mercenary corporation has emerged.

It appears clear who the true enemy is. It is those who seek to control us, those who seek to expand their stranglehold on our lives. The enemy is not your neighbor, it is not your co worker, it is not your mother in law. The enemy is the collective of humans who have decided that it is their right to control the destiny of others. It is Barrack Obama, John McCain, Mahmoud  Ahmadinejad, the Pope, and your friendly neighborhood police chief.