Chautauqua 5

Pirsig describes a Chautauqua, when I was young and on the path I often imagined myself on a Chautauqua trying to discover what life was about. When you are on a road of discovery that road is focussed on learning about the path. And when you learn about the path your focus has to be inward resolving all the confusions miseducation has brought. But when you are old and you donít have to live with the compromises that work makes you accept you can see what-is-what. In your sila-world you can look back with sufficient money to live your life and see what humanity has done. My parents brought me up in a way that meant I didnít have to suffer war. They kind of wore blinkers about war because they had suffered, they avoided war. But that didnít stop the British from being war-like people. Ever since the time of Cromwell the British have waged war to make profits. It started with Ireland as the first colony and it spread like wildfire until the Americans stepped in to take the spoils of the second world war. And from then on in the warring colonialists of the first and second world war have become agents for American foreign policy as NATO continued to wage war. It is not insignificant that the Founding Fathers of the current hegemony set sail from a miniscule English port brandishing their religion as a justification for profiteering Ė eventually through war against the indigenous peoples. This is written in English, and English is the language of these war-makers, all of you reading this in English have benefitted from the wars that the leaders who speak this language have waged. The privileges of education and lifestyle of those who read English can be traced to war.

Harsh but true. OK I described the UK as dog-eat-dog, and thatís true. Englandís soldiers fought wars yet many of those people thought they were fighting with honour. When the Americans have left their homeland to fight they have thought they were fighting with honour. When the soldiers of Europe go and fight in the Middle East at the behest of NATO they think they are fighting with honour. Hollywood would say these are men of honour, and portray movies of honourable men. In a sense they were honourable men but what they do and have done is not honourable. These were men, and women more recently, who were duped into fighting wars for profits as honourable people. And I see no end to this suffering, suffering in the hearts and minds of those in the NATO hegemony and physical suffering in the wars these soldiers carry out in far-off lands. And that is before you look at the most heinous, suffering caused by drones fired from TV screens in Nevada bunkers.

Why will there be no end? Pirsig and other young people including myself make their journey and focus inwards on learning. Around them their leaders, old and late in life, are living out their egotisms in their offices of power. What compromises have they made to be in power? The rich need their receptionists, these politicals, to bear the brunt of criticism of war and other policies, and there are always those eager for power. And their egos continue to educate egos of the young who fight with honour, the honour of country. This is the country they were brought up in, this is the country of their family, this is the country where parents and grandparents had their houses, did their shopping, where they went to school. These are all ďniceĒ things, these are not things done by people who start wars in far-off lands for the profits of the wealthy few. The production line of these young and honourable people will continue. Some might argue that if we make more people aware then this production line will stop, but what percentage of our young are these honourable soldiers? And this percentage becomes less and less as the weapons of war become more and more powerful Ö. and deadly. After all how can we make all young people believe all the lies that our leaders say, all the lies our families colluded with?

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