Against Polarization and Hate

It’s a world of hate, with war on all sides.
This eagle sorrows at the anger and hate,
pondering the problem from his perch in the tree.
What do you do, if you do not hate,
when manifest multitudes are mandating hate?
Each end’s extremes are stark-raving mad.
The ghost of McCarthy, that grim specter,
is haunting us still and hunting them out:
sometimes “communists,” sometimes “fascists,”
depending on what the platform is.
Targets have changed, but tactics remain,
unjust as before and jury-lacking.
Witch-hunts, inquisitions, willful arrogance,
prideful disregard for due process,
and bashing people for the books they read.
That major villain, Matthew Hopkins,
would be very proud of the vicious mobs
and the awful “heroes” who emulate him.
The other end is not any better,
people-bashing ‘gainst pigments of skin,
social safety-nets, sexual preferences,
and all who dare to organize labor
or aspire to other than spawning babies.
And both are prone to bloody violence:
senseless spectacles, signaling outrages,
tiki torches, taunting police,
anonymous threats on networked forums,
burning crosses, breaking windows,
suppressing speech, peddling intimidation.
Which end is which? The eagle wonders.
Was nothing learned from knowledge of history?
Really, making the “correct” choice
of others to other won’t alter ourselves,
won’t raise us up to a righteous standing.
A change of targets won’t change consciousness,
won’t make it evolve; a committed rising
above duality, above dark hate,
to the light above is the luminous path,
the only path, that goes up to Spirit.
Because, definitely, “darkness cannot
drive out darkness,” deemed MLK,
“only light can do that” — only light, it’s true.
And that “Hate cannot” — he said it best —
ever “drive out hate, only love can
do that.” Damn right. The despotism now
of dualistic thinking is a difficult trap,
one that ensnares the world at large,
and even this eagle can only hope
that he is not trapped. But how to escape?
The willful seeker of serious wisdom
must start to drink from the strangest wells,
just like Óðinn, who journeys always
for value anywhere and avoids thus
the echo chambers on all of sides.
By blending many, the bright and the dark,
the inner and outer, the up and the down,
Óðinn obtains an artful synthesis,
for third alternatives and thoughtful solutions.
So aiming upwards, this eagle flies
— truly he does — with two of wings,
a left and a right. To live without hate,
he’s stuck with both, for striving and flying.
Maybe you don’t need such a matching pair,
especially if you’re not a spirited flyer.
All us animals have our avenues to follow,
some on the ground, some in the sea,
some soaring up, and some elsewhere.
So own your journey as this eagle does his.

*********

Copyright © 2018 Eirik Westcoat.
All rights reserved.

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