Brian’s Reflection: Wednesday, January 11, 2012
The Soul of man is made an article of merchandize
by his fellow man and can such a land be happy?
No! Happiness does not dwell in any land that is
scarred by the blighting curse of Slavery.
Ezra Cornell, educator and founder of Cornell
University; he was born on this date, 1807.
It had not occurred to me until I was pondering the words of Ezra Cornell ….. but we are, in America, in a new age of Slavery. In my opinion, so is most of the World. If I may wax slightly dramatic, it has been a tussle for many decades between the God of Love and Mammon (sometimes known as Filthy Lucre) ….. and Mammon is now winning. The interesting thing is: Mammon has had great skills of wiliness and, as is so often true of attractive deities, has been very subtly able to enlist the partnership of countless human accomplices - many of whom are not really aware of just how profoundly they have been co-opted and duped. Among them, politicians, entrepreneurs, advertisers, religions, and hoards of people who have been seduced into thinking that if they abet Mammon, they too will some day join the ranks of the privileged. They never realize that in the end, they are always pawns in the hands of the rich and greedy.
I suddenly “saw” how most of us have colluded in allowing ourselves to be Slaves, “articles of merchandize”. But as Dr. Cornell wisely said, “Happiness does not dwell in any land that is scarred by the blighting curse of Slavery”. I see America as a very unhappy land ….. where only the 1% see Life getting “better”. In the supposedly richest and greatest country on Earth, tens of millions of children and adults live in poverty, have no health care, are hungry, are poorly educated, and one of our few growing industries is the building of more and more prisons. Meanwhile those who govern are so well off and insulated that their souls have been stripped of all human sympathy ….. and they are so self-deluded that they believe their policies to be “for the good” of the country. Including the majority of our Supreme Court who, by declaring corporations “persons” have set a course for the destruction of “government by the people and for the people”.
This is the character of public life in America today ….. and it is just, in my mind, like the times of the prophet Amos and, later, of Jesus, and in 1789 in France at the time of the French Revolution, and in Russia in 1917 - and in Tunisia and Libya and Syria. Occupying Movements are growing, and eventually rage will set societies alight.
Slavery to Money and all it symbolizes is a blighting curse for America and so many other peoples. Our crisis is a “spiritual” crisis, a struggle for the human soul, a clash between Love and Power. Do not think that if the Powerful win this round, America will grow greater. No, it will slowly be eaten alive from within until it dies in a fetid pool of decay.
If we want happiness in our land, we must reject Slavery. And only Love frees.