In the post to which this one links, Jesse Kornbluth uses one of the Buddha’s parables, retold by Thich Nhat Hahn, to explain how one may miss opportunities to act if one fails to cultivate a mindfulness. We have been told, by Saul Alinsky and others, that cultivating anger at particular others is a vehicle for organizing. Indeed, we cover Alinsky’s ideas in my social movements class tonight. This is another view, one which links personal and social transformation, inviting us to consider whether mindfulness may be more decisive in the longer term.
As I write, our government—that’s Congress, that’s the President—is on the verge of deciding how badly to hurt the sick, the poor and the aged.
I never thought I’d write a sentence like that.
But then, I have never witnessed such institutionalized cruelty before. If current views prevail, we will effectively criminalize misfortune—get fired, get majorly sick, lose your home, and you will fall right through the shredded safety net into poverty, misery and premature death. This, in the richest country in the world.
This is not about politics. This is about morality. And it makes me furious.
Which accomplishes nothing.
via Jesse Kornbluth THE GOOD MEN PROJECT: 21ST-CENTURY MASCULINITY • Thich Nhat Hanh: Being Peace., July 28, 2011