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Has Marianne’s electorality been ACIMed?
For the convenience of language I am going to analyse Marianne. I do not know her, it is for her to come to terms with her path, and I have no idea how she has done that. I am going to analyse several snippets concerning her and will come to a conclusion. This is for the purpose of analysis in this blog, and not for the purpose of judging her. Please do not take what I say here as a judgement of her, I will highlight what I want you to take from this and it will then be up to you to decide.
Watch Marianne’s clip, part of an interview with Russell Brand.
When I watch this I see attachment to the emotion of compassion. I see someone who cares wanting to do something. Of itself there is nothing wrong with that. But then we come to the point of pathtivism, is her activism constructive? Marianne has recently chosen the electoral route to express her compassion. I assess that all she has done is involve her spiritual followers in the electoral process, and I question whether this is constructive.
Especially in the US, politics is a huge diversion from power, supporting the Democrats is even mainstream television comedy (Trevor Noah’s Daily Show). Mainstream Liberal TV is trying to get you to vote, by this they are involving you in electoral democracy and you can then be deluded that you are doing something.
There is an appalling US phrase “make a difference” designed to suck in caring Liberals. Liberals want to care and show they care, they are not revolutionary, they want their nice lives to continue but it would be nicer if bad things didn’t happen – so they can enjoy their avocado toast. These Liberals have survived recent political austerities and still have a nice lifestyle. Systemic wars in the Middle East continue, the planet is being destroyed, yet they have reduced their use of plastic bags - and well Muslim clerics stir everyone up, don’t they?
Liberals wants to comfortably make a difference, and if electoral democracy works they can do that – the world is a better place if my X is in the right box. And Marianne Williamson is contributing to that feeling by being a candidate. Here is the full Russell discussion. As a complete package she was better but there was still ego.
Despite Marianne being a candidate, electoral democracy is not concerned with compassion – freedom from suffering for all – betterment for all. It is concerned with ego. It provides the illusion of power so that people can get involved and think they are doing something. Politics is the chimera of activism – complete delusion.
What else can we do? We can move the goalposts. Compassion is where we move it to. Politically we can make compassion a benchmark so that politicians have to talk compassion but that will change very little because politics is not concerned with power just ego. What we can do is work compassionately in community building, here is Thay talking about community building with David Suzuki.
This is the Engaged Buddhism and Boddhisattva discussion. Spiritually it is our dhammic duty to be involved but then through ignorance of politics spiritual people blunder into the political arena, the arena of ego, thinking it is activism, and our energies have been sucked into the ego of electoral democracy. Marianne's decision to be a candidate is part of this sucking-in process.
Each of our actions has to have compassionate meaning, were Marianne’s actions on the Democratic debate adding to compassion when Trevor was laughing at her? How fascinating the world is. Trevor interviewed her here – including eating crow at the end (without an apology), and it gave me hope. My ego said “if she keeps making a hit like this maybe there is a way”. But that is how they suck you in, they want the ego way to be appealing. No doubt, that interview made her more appealing. But what will be the result?
Let me be realistic and assume her failure in the electoral process. Consider the apathetic who worked with Corbyn and Sanders. Where have they got nowhere? What will happen? Renewed apathy. So maybe Marianne brings people into the process. They vote democrat, it goes nowhere, gets subsumed in the Big Tent, and they become spiritual and apathetic again.
What do I propose? Avoid but not reject politics. Follow your path and become pathtivists within the community – not the political arena. When the ego of politics lets you down, there will still be the community, feedback and worth; but no power.
Here I am mostly in line with Marianne – bringing consciousness into politics – compassion. What she is doing is raising compassion, compare how much she has done on that compared to me – 5 months younger than me. There is a line between raising compassion in the political arena and supporting electoral politics, she has raised compassion, continues to raise compassion, even in her candidacy she is mostly raising compassion – that I support. Can electoral politics make the change? That I don’t. Her response to socialism shows a lack of knowledge, it doesn’t matter but it is an indicator that she doesn’t have the details. It does matter because she does not know socialism is nearer the good guys. She does talk of “if she were in the Oval office” – there she has gone ego and has lost sight that power and electoral politics is controlled.
And the whole talk finished on a huge problem marianne2020.com. People are taking money from the community - velocity of circulation (where it belongs even if it isn’t there), and dropping it down the campaign rabbit-hole.
Is Marianne making a difference? Yes. Can electoral politics make a difference? No.
In my view Marianne has been led there by ACIM - A Course in Miracles. Early in retirement I looked at ACIM, and eventually ditched it with a warning. In the warning I said ACIM appeals to ego, there is self-hypnosis with affirmations “I am blessed as a Son of God”. In the warning I was critical of the use of I, but I use I. What concerns me is the appeal to ego, and the issue of manifestation. In this final question she was talking of all things being possible, this is the ACIM delusional promotion of ego that concerns me with her involvement with the electoral process. It might be possible but not likely, what harm has she done?
On manifesting let me describe a Teal Triber who openly writes about manifesting a successful job (with money). Through manifesting (law of attraction) this Teal Triber thinks “a job will come along”, and the Triber is depressed because no job has manifested. Manifestation happens, it is tathata – just the way it is. Do we have volition in manifesting? I found this (lost the reference –sorry) with suggestions for conscious manifestation – no idea whether they work but these 9 actions are more like a path but with a manifested vision; why not just follow the path – you will be a better person. Maybe I should try conscious manifestation but shouldn’t efforts be put into being authentic and letting nature take care of manifesting? I disagree with ACIM – and therefore Marianne - I need to investigate this manifesting.
Please remember all of the above is not a judgement of Marianne's actions, for me she judges her own actions and that is final for me. Through analysis I am using what she has done to raise questions. Has ACIM manifested Marianne’s electoral ego? I think ACIM can do that, that is why I stopped following ACIM. Marianne has raised consciousness of compassion in activism, I fully support this. She has also gone into electoral politics, an arena that is controlled by 1%-satrapy and designed as a rabbit-hole. Is electoral involvement for the betterment of all?
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