Rise up or Die: Some questions

We stand helpless before the corporate onslaught. There is no way to vote against corporate power. Citizens have no way to bring about the prosecution of Wall Street bankers and financiers for fraud, military and intelligence officials for torture and war crimes, or security and surveillance officers for human rights abuses.

VIA: Chris Hedges: Rise up or Die – Truthdig.com

Having read Chris Hedges book “Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt”, where he and Joe Sacco go to some of the most impoverished parts of the US and report back that yes, what is happening in this country is the same destruction and sickness that we attribute to third world countries, I was happy to see that he is still speaking up and out about our current state of affairs.

What will be the issue(s) that cause you to rise up or die?

Will you wait until your home mortgage is upside down and you have nowhere to go? Or, will you wait to confirm that the cancer you have is definitely caused by GMOs or pesticides, or your shampoo?  Will you wait until, like in Greece, the government that is no longer FOR the people nor BY the people, plan to literally take your money from your accounts?

I ask myself these same questions. I have risen up on occasion, but I think that what we all know is coming is a mass rising. That said, I do not feel that the rising has to be an “against” rising.  I would love for it to be a “for” rising.

What would you rise for? Are you and I wiling to stand and rise for a sustained period of time or just on the weekends to carry signs in front of passing traffic?  What will finally cause us to coalesce into the powerful billions that we are?

What connection does rising up have to householding?  It has complete connection.  Our planet is our home.  We all collectively hold this earth, as it holds us, and have the power to destroy our ability to live on it or to increase, peacefully, our ability to live on it.

As with householding and homemaking, we have choices. Thank the Gods we still have choices!  We CAN disengage from the current paradigm in many meaningful ways. These are not easy ways in this world, though.  Who wants to disconnect from all the electrical input, for starters? No one.  So, how to continue to be connected but not through a controlled system? How can we have control of our own food if we get 98% of it from a manufacturer? How can we even think of doing these things when we don’t have enough money to make any ends meet? I do believe the answers to these questions are individual and collective. We do what we can and then find like-minded, supportive others to learn, grow and celebrate with.

The great news is that people in your community or location have been doing this type of disengagement for a long time.  Go find those people and talk to them.  Use what you can from what they know and rise up to the occasion of living your life for yourself and the good of your community, not for the profit of a few.

The Fifth Sacred Thing film in development, narrated by Olympia Dukakis.

The Fifth Sacred Thing film in development, narrated by Olympia Dukakis.

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5 Comments on “Rise up or Die: Some questions”

  1. Sven says:

    Great post! I think we all need to rise up in our own ways, and that may mean different things to different people. But lately I’ve been thinking that if we really want to make it through these almost insurmountable challenges, then those of us who are conscious need to step up our game even more beyond what we’re already comfortable with doing. For example, for me it’s always been difficult to raise my voice and pound my fist, I’m simply not that kind of a person. But that’s exactly why I decided to ride my bike to Chevron and hoot and holler at them a couple of weeks ago. It didn’t come natural, but it ended up being extremely effective and in fact, gratifying, to defy myself. I’d love to see more people do things that are kind of unexpected even for themselves, because it’s the one thing corporations and the ingrained system doesn’t know how to handle. They thrive on our sense of routine, habit, and apathy, so throwing ourselves lots of curve balls also disrupts the whole machine.

    • I so agree, Sven, that we all need to step up our game beyond what is comfortable. I’m actually thinking that comfort could be the original problem. As you say, “they thrive on our sense of routine, habit and apathy” and all of those things also bring many of us comfort. Yep, swarm as tactic seems to make the most sense right now. I LOVED your Chevron action!

  2. Jon says:

    Good read, Naima. I read that article from Chris as well. It’s a very intense subject and one that most would rather not have to deal with but it is upon us and does raise a lot of internal questions.

  3. Stasia says:

    I liked how you changed the question from what we would rise against into what to rise for?
    For every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction. Rising up is a natural reaction. I like your suggestion to “disengage from the current paradigm” and find other like-minded people in our own communities. Connecting with others can help sustain the energy needed to rise up for something we believe is worth it.
    I haven’t read Hedges’ book yet, but I like how your post still got me thinking. Actually, I think a lot of what I can do – how I want to most effectively use my energy in this life. I feel powerless and unheard as a female in our society, so that is my most recent conundrum I’m trying to figure out.


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