Laura still went out on these dos although she rarely enjoyed them now - they had remained friends over time and this is what old friends did; although it was getting better - more meaningful at least with Ashann. They had paid to come in, and as was obligatory almost they checked the ShamTaj wall - they had it on their forecast but it seemed more sociable to go up to the wall. "He's a doll,"" pouted Laura and they all laughed - none of them would be seen dead with a Taj, least of all, Laura. Unless they renounced.
Her mind drifted back to the club, to Betos in front of her. Yes he was nice looking, but his arrogance when he first approached made her squirm - she mistakenly let that go. Betos was charming but that didn't attract Laura - or so she thought. What interested her could never be found whilst they were at a club, only afterwards could they discover how important the path was to each other. She rarely allowed such meetings to extend beyond the club as these clubs were just .... shallow.
There was something about Betos, and she thought it wasn't his charm; she couldn't believe she would fall for any insincerity that masqueraded as charm. To begin with there was no issue because of no highhook, so they met next day for lunch to see if there was something other than charm - substance. Pleasant enough but he still seemed to be hiding behind his charm - to be fair that is just conditioning; and of course it works with many. Her measure of course always was, and she hoped always would be, the path so none of that mattered. She tried one of her benchmarks. She gave out the conviction "She knew this", it was just met with a smile; why didn't she just walk out? But there was something to him. Was it the path, the potential for the path, or just his teflon charm? She refused his advances but was prepared to meet him again.
And that was when she thoroughly investigated the ShamTaj App. "Betos Nazarian", family money had built the Sarya online empire. What they declared was obnoxious enough but the app reckoned that the Nazarian non-declarations were huge. So this sicko thought he could charm her, well next day she would embarrass him, she didn't need an app to cause such Taj shame. Why wasn't he on the Shamtaj wall already?
She approached with her own charm offensive, and he completely threw her off by announcing he was Betos Nazarian. "I am sorry I didn't tell you before, I have not tried to take advantage."
Although taken aback by his blunt admission, she was still fuming - she still wanted to do her duty and shame him as much as publicly possible, but something held her back.
"When we first talked I thought you could help me,"" Betos began tentatively.
“Yes, renounce, you Taj” she muttered under her breath.
Half guessing, maybe he subliminally heard her "I want your help in renouncing."
"Do I look like the Bureau of Renouncement?" she snapped at him.
He looked at her, at her anger, and there was so much resentment. He had thought that her depth would have helped him; it looked like he was wrong. He apologised and got up to leave.
She was still resentful but there was enough inside her to tell him to wait. "Why or how can I help you?" she asked tentatively.
"To be honest, I thought we could get together for longer, and then you would want to help me renounce," he started "but I knew I couldn't keep up the pretence. You can see, your path can see." He paused "this is not a line, maybe it is the path ....” He stopped as she sneered at him.
"First you are Taj, and you think to waste this Talak's valuable time," she paused trying to control her temper "and now you give me a routine about the path," she snapped still snarling at him.
There was silence, and she could see he was struggling with something. "Laura. For a long time I have thought about renouncing, but I love my parents," he told her frankly.
"But the harm they do with their accumulation, and I presume where they invest," she answered out of the decumulation handbook.
He held up his hand as if to say "back off". "I am not defending them, I just love them. They are my family, their lifestyle - our lifestyle - is all I have ever known," he continued. His voice was cracking, it was emotional with guilt and apology.
The emotion got to her and she toned down. Sure she believed all the pathtivist rhetoric - it was so painfully obvious and true, but Taj were Talak too. They have the potential to love and feel the way Talaks do, there is nothing that says they cannot follow the path - be spiritual and even be pathtivists.
He could see that he was getting through to her, he had seen the empathy in her almost as soon as they met. His heart swelled up, maybe she is the right one. "That is why I am asking you to help me. I haven't been able to renounce on my own, I think with your help I can," he blurted out again "I sense something in you that can help me. I don't know what it is. If I say "compassion", you'll say I am giving you a line but I really feel you can help me."
"You put a lot on a girl," but she smiled warmly and he felt good with this.
"For me there is a problem with the renouncement people. You walk in to them and immediately you are the enemy. Like you did before they see Taj first, they see the harm the Taj do, and as a Taj you become the focus of their anger at all Taj. I know the Taj do harm, that is why I want to renounce, but I am Talak too. I have feelings of love. Renouncing means I have to end my lifestyle. I don't know whether my family will continue to speak to me. My friends, well the people from school and uni I still hang around with, even if some are a bit sympathetic will have to stop talking to me. Some won't mind as they will see me as common but some will be so sad as we have been friends for a long time. Renouncing is a big decision for me, and I need help - not a chapter from the Renouncement bible."
Thoughts of anger crossed her mind. Sanctimonious liberals. Ideologues. She hated that aspect of these people. Yes, they said the same things as she did but they had no compassion. For years their ideologue spouting had alienated the PAPTaj egos - privileged arrogant puppets working for the Taj. As a result of this compassionless whining, the egos of many PAPTies reacted emotionally, enclaved and began supporting anti-PC-authoritarianism - not at all constructive. It took a long time for PAPTies to overcome this aversion - this reinforced conditioning, and focus their attention on the real problem – the Taj; of course the Taj knew this and had funded writers and intellectuals who attacked these rulebooks - these PC ideologues. Yet they whined and bleated away, further enhancing the divisions the Taj had created. In some ways Laura hated these people just as much as the Taj and it took all the discipline of her spirit not to have empathy with Betos; Betos had struck a sympathetic chord.
"You have me a bit, Betos," she smiled encouragingly "but what do you want me to do? Maybe ...."
His visage visibly dropped with relief, and he felt a moment of overwhelming love for Laura; he knew his sense was right. He wanted to jump up and smother her to death, he tentatively put out his hand and she let him hold her by the wrist. "Will you go with me to the Renouncement Bureau? I am not sure I can face their chastisement alone. I am sure being with you, they will be more favourable - not liking me of course because I am Taj," he smiled winningly.
And the vulnerable charm was working, he was winning her over. How could she say no? Nazarian money was hugely influential, the Nazarian dynasty was famous for its power. If Nazarian money could be diverted into indigenitisation or frontline communes or villages, this would be a major shift in the decumulation balance.
"I will go with you to the Bureau, but I make no promises," she agreed beginning to get excited - this was making a difference, she was making a difference.
She agreed to meet him the next day to go to the Bureau.
She went home to research typing Taj as a starting point, and realised she didn't even know where the word had come from. She found out that it came from Tajout movement, tajout.com. It started small, a group of college people started the website demanding that we put pressure on the rich elite who took their money out of circulation and left it accumulating in tax-free accounts or dubious unsustainable finance mechanisms. Their accumulations were used to invest in a system that perpetuated the poverty and exploitation of the Talaks. She read that the Tajout were the first group who targetted the rich elites, and demanded they give money back to the Talak. "We are Talak, Taj give back."
As sometimes happens this slogan struck a chord and began to reverberate with more and more Talaks, especially when Tajout targetted the investment wing of banks:-
"We are Talak,
.... Taj, give back"
"We are Talak,
.... Taj, give back"
It became a "battle cry". At the demos Talaks would all stand with their fists raised in salute. "We are Talak," they all shouted. Then there was a pause of intended silence, followed by all the protesters stomping on the ground shouting "Taj, give back" as they, ordinary Talaks, pointed at the banks.
Tajout then called for a change, moving away from the banks with their layers of public and private protection they began to target Taj families. Tajout would examine the wealth of individual Taj dynasties. They would produce genealogies of these dynasties. First they would demonstrate outside their homes, chanting "We are Talak, Taj give back". As the movement grew Tajout split into cells focussing on the families where they lived, where their kids went to school, where they ate at restaurants, where they went on holidays. And wherever the dynasties went Tajout would organise demos. The movement caught on globally because people began to see that they had a legitimate target for all their woes. For a long time people had known that this system of neoliberalism was the cause of all their suffering, the wars in the world and their own wage-slavery, but the Corporations were global, they controlled governments and other PAPTies. Talaks demanded that the system be fixed but nothing changed. Sure there were minor concessions but nothing significant changed. In fact it got worse as the corporations got bigger, making the impositions on Talaks worse and worse and worse. Anonymity was important to the Corporations, a big company could not be a target but the CEOs could. It was usual for the super rich not to flaunt their money - there were of course gross exceptions, but mostly the super-rich preferred anonymity - these almost anonymous Talaks became known as Taj.
The Taj became concerned as their lifestyles were affected. Tajout stressed that it was peaceful demonstrations. Taj families just met their chants wherever they went, fist-raised "We are Talak", pause and pointing "Mercen, give back". The Taj didn't like this infringement of their liberty, this public shaming and awareness. For the central moneygrabbers a bunch of Talaks chanting at them just fanned their egos. But the wives doing fashionable shopping were targetted. At the large stores Tajout would have demonstrators fist-raised “We are Talak”, pause and pointing “Mrs Mercen, give back”. It was an end for the quiet coffee, it was an end to their being Taj and Talak at the same time.
Tajout had demonstrators at their houses and as they left there were trackers. Demonstrators at the coffee shops were arrested but Tajout grew big and paid the fines, so more Talaks joined in. Soon the stores catering to the elites were affected. Wherever the Taj went there were demonstrations so if you shopped with the rich your life was affected. Instead of these places being exclusive havens for the Taj and PAPTies they became places of embarrassment, became shells and closed down. Soon these stores had to go online so online business improved but the ostentatious lifestyles of the rich and famous became lives in which they moved from demonstration to demonstration if they left the security of their walled homes. Not a choice they wanted their money to buy.
Whilst all this was happening more and more Talaks began to realise that these Taj were parasites. There had always been Talaks who analysed the economic system and pointed to those with privilege, they even characterised a significant group of Talaks, the PAPTies, as Talaks who followed the Taj hoping for breadcrumbs. These PAPTies bought into all the propaganda, and for a long while they promoted the delusions the Taj wanted blaming the government, other races, liberals, for what the Taj created. But whilst some of these PAPTies acted deplorably, many were just angry and wanted to do something about their disrupted life-styles. Soon they began to realise that Tajout had built something that had the power to affect them, affect their lives.
Everyone needed money, that was the basis of the wage-slavery of the Taj system. But once it became clear that these Taj were being affected by Tajout many Taj wage-slaves, ordinary Talaks, would use the Tajout hotline to report where the Taj would be. Chauffeurs, cooks, maids, butlers would text the hotlines, and the itinerary of these exploiters would soon be known and everywhere the Taj went there were demonstrations - some large some token but they were always there. Their super-rich life of excessive privilege was always disrupted. Talaks were soon sacked for contacting hotlines so Tajout made an App, Tajapp. This app could be used to contact Tajout then once used it morphed into the operating system so it couldn't be detected. And the sackings made life worse for these privileged as their fellow workers reacted sympathetically and joined Tajapp.
The Taj were squirming and a few started becoming ostentatious benefactors. They started foundations in which they were supposedly giving back, their overt ostentatious donations were a big show they wore on their sleeves. This stifled Tajout for a while but gradually Tajout sympathisers began to analyse where these benefactions took place. Computer companies setup foundations in the name of their Taj for poor to buy computers, agricultural companies setup foundations in the name of their Taj to buy fertilisers, phone companies gave money to buy phones. It soon became clear to the Tajout community online that this benefaction was a con, it was neoliberalism consuming in another form. Blogs started far and wide talking about this benefaction con, and soon there were demonstrations about the benefaction. The Taj argued they were feeding the poor but Talaks had already understood that the Taj were the problem and just saw this benefaction as a trick to bring poorer Talaks into the addictive world of consuming.
Tajout developed the ShamTaj app. Talaks would follow this app. Wherever they were they keyed in their location, and the app would tell them which Taj were in their area. On the app there would be a picture of the Taj dynastic, and a description of the slave labour, the environmental damage their corporation had caused. At some stores Tajout would hack into the online advertising within the store, the restaurant or even public advertising space and show a video of that dynasty's complicity in the Corporation's destruction of Gaia and her communities.
As time went on some Taj would withdraw from the corporations, take some of the money they had gained through exploitation, donated the rest to decumulation, and lived anonymously hoping that Tajout would leave them alone. They were Talaks then, and not of interest as targets especially as these ex-Taj had contributed to indigenitisation projects, frontline struggles or localisation communes. It was an ongoing battle as there were always the greedy willing to replace the escapees. But gradually there was improvement with proper non-exploitative financing and a more sustainable way of life.
At this stage there had been a shift in Talak mentality. Many greedy Taj became ashamed of their accumulation - as they should have been, and with the ShamTaj app they became publicly shamed. The ShamTaj app became an illegal fact of life on Kolok; young people rooted their phones, and so were able to anonymously run the app whilst using the megacandy OS. All those same young people wanted to be Tajout reps helping others with their apps whilst maintaining anonymity. Accumulation was not something to be revered, to be envied, it became a scourge. Still there were many PAPTies trying to get more money, but it was just not so easy because more Talaks were acting through spirit, and if there was any judgement these PAPTies did not measure up well.
Observer's Report to the Council on Gaia Section 117 Planet 5/q/3
Once the Gaia, Kolok, had seen her attachment and become aware that her emotional link with the Talak egos was worsening the problem, she developed the needed discipline. For Kolok now had learned not to attach her consciousness, and without their realising this released the Talaks from their own egoic prisons.