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Jan’s Daily Fresh Real News (to accompany this talk)
CONFLICT IN THE CITY IS NOT WHAT FROM THE CITY PERSPECTIVE IT SEEMS
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Reporting On Reality In Its Right Size Since 1443
September 5, 2003 © 2003: JAN COX
War Story From A Principal Participant
“Wouldn’t you be off put if someone invaded your country?! —
and I’ll tell you what makes it even worse: when you can’t tell for sure who it is.
It’s one thing to have a known outside entity declare its intention
to attack you, but to have an external force come into your private land
who you cannot identify makes the situation both more dangerous and upsetting
(the: ‘familiar-foe-being-preferable-to-an-unknown-one’ thing).
Well, that is my situation, and truth is, that of everyone here, but strange to note:
they give no direct indication of being aware of it;
much of what they say suggests that they have a subtle sensation that all is not well, and there is constant carping over specific conditions and endless wrangling over
what should be done to improve our lot, but none of the discussions are about the invasion of our land — which I clearly see is at the root of this unusual dissatisfaction that has settled on our people.
It is unusual in that none can find a cure therefor,
and yet since no one sees the source thereof,
it is not unusual that no remedy is forthcoming
(you can’t treat a rash if you don’t know the nature of the rash).
This does not stop my countrymen however from relentlessly engaging in
activity intended to medicate their agitated condition,
while neither recognizing the cause of their dissatisfaction,
nor acknowledging the consistent failure of all their endeavors:
their pursuits amount to busy-work —
something to do, which for the moment, distracts their attention from the fact that
they do not actually know what to do about their situation.
And something else:
this unrealized invading force has become so entrenched in our land
that the people’s thinking is now affected;
somehow it has pulled off history’s greatest propaganda coup:
it colors their overall outlook on their lives
with them being oblivious to what has occurred,
but there is something even more interesting (though much harder to describe):
this intruding energy has likewise itself been influenced by the conditions here,
but exactly how, is impossible to say, in that it not being native to our locale,
we have no conclusive knowledge of its state prior to its appearance here,
but having recognized its presence and being in contact with it,
I tell you with absolute certainty that this incursive energy is being as much
shaped by the physical circumstances of our land
as our land and its people are being shaped by it,
(as to whether the irruptive force understands the situation any better than do my countrymen is an intriguing question, all I know with surety is that I do).
Notice that I have not referred to this extrinsic force that has settled here,
and so influenced our lives as hostile,
which, as extraordinary as it be, I cannot do:
who has ever heard, in a military milieu, of an invading army that was not hostile to those it invaded,
or in a medical setting of a virus not virulent to the host it infects,
yet this is the instant case:
our land indeed finds itself to now be home for a non native, uninvited force,
but one which I cannot say has done us harm, but in fact whose presence has
in numerous ways been of benefit.
It is an arrangement the likes of which I see no counterpart anywhere else
in this universe.
The invasive force and our land have come to some accommodation
that is a work-in-progress;
the very activities in which my neighbors engage
in the attempt to quiet their misdiagnosed dissatisfaction
are nothing less than side effects of this ongoing, behind the scenes effort of the two
to achieve an ever more mutually agreeable accommodation.
Thus I live amidst a turmoil — yet one constantly working to soothe itself,
but none of the citizens here realize what is going on,
and thus operate as a part of the turmoil.
It is tricky indeed to calm a water when the wind and the water are inseparable.”
A story from a conflict.