it’s just no good

Long before scientists had devised ways of discovering …

how the universe operates, human beings had decided that the world they inhabited was governed by some overarching 

grand design that controlled events & dispelled justice … this grand design … is the subject of the mythologies which developed in different cultures … 

… all have a common core, that of a kind of Just World which ensures that ultimately …

bad people are
punished

& …

good people are
rewarded

(Dorothy Rowe)

Oh dear, perhaps we should have paid more attention to the three witches when they uttered the ‘F‘ word:

Fair is foul & foul is fair

In the last few days I have been introduced to a cunning delusion that has had the run of my life.

The pervasiveness of the belief in a just world, called in social psychology the “just-world hypothesis,” was first described by Melvin Lerner … [He] argued that people wanted to think that the world was predictable … and, therefore, potentially controllable …  Behave by the rules and you will be all right; fail to follow the rules and bad things will happen

Ignore, or feel superior to, Just World-thinking at your own loss – its fingers are everywhere.

just (adj.)   late 14c., “righteous in the eyes of God; upright … from O.Latin ious, perhaps lit. “sacred formula,” a word … that originated in the religious cults

A while ago, I wondered about justice. Maybe you remember …

The gods, it was taught, loved to nourish themselves on truth & justice

That’s kind of weird, don’t you think?

You did think about it didn’t you? 

Or do I have to repeat myself?

It’s not as if the bastards have ever played fair with humanity, now is it?

Just World thinking‘ is the national dish of Western thought.

You remember it don’t you?

It was the sugary stuff coating the particular pill of goodness you swallowed.

Perhaps we’d better make sure we’re on the same page when we speak of goodness.

It is that price charged by dead people for admission into familial & cultural, Hades

Lerner argued that, in learning to be good, children make a contract with the world wherein they promise to give up those aspects  of themselves which are

unacceptable to their parents & in return for such a sacrifice they will be rewarded if not now then when they grow up. For the contract to be fulfilled the world must be a Just World. Thus we grow up needing to see the world as a Just World, & our need often blinds us to reality

The sentence that was supposed to go here got stuck somewhere.  It was a wise & witty sentence that intrigued & connected with its reader, stirring an awareness that had long awaited its arrival.

I do apologise, I don’t know where it got to.

Instead all I can offer is a simple plea that you give consideration to the concept of the Just World & to the thought that, like it or not, it is as much a part of you as your bone marrow.

In most societies, particularly in those where one religion is very powerful, children learn to see the functioning of the Just World all around them in their everyday life, defining their existence & identity

Having made the discovery that no amount of goodness prevents disaster, many people search for the sin they did not know they had committed but for which they are now being punished

Some people … abandon all forms of religion … but very few of them actually give up their belief in a Just World, for to do so means living in a world without certainty … people may not see the hand of God dispensing justice but they still feel that somehow, in the end, the good are rewarded & the bad are punished

The belief in a Just World is a story, & stories are supremely important to us. We are meaning-creating creatures & we are storytellers. Anything new or unexpected we encounter has to be fitted into a story … We prefer stories which are in some way complete because they give us … a sense that the world, or at least some part of it, is back in balance again …

… & the balance is that of the Just World

The Just World research shows how people will adjust their interpretations of events …

… in order to preserve their belief in the Just World. An undeserved reward leads some people to see themselves as being a much better person than they had previously thought, while others in this position fear that they will suffer some terrible blow so that their suffering matches their reward

Why all these quotes?

Well in the hope that it gives you pointers as to what to look for in your marrow because …

this shit
is
cancerous‘:

Believing in the Just World leads us into self-delusion, denial & acts of cruelty against ourselves & others

Why might that be.

Well for one thing there is nothing more dangerous to the human spirit
than the concept of …

… ‘insurance‘.

Let’s look at insurance.

Are you covered?  

Just what are you covered in?

The original term used for insurance gives us a clue. Once upon a time, it was called assurance.

assurance  late 14c., “formal or solemn pledge, promise,” … safety, security

assure (v.)  late 14c … “to reassure, calm, protect, to render sure

Bear with me …

secure (adj.)   1530s, “without care“.

sure  c.1300, “safe, secure,” later “mentally certain” … from L. securus “free from care

Just one more …

care (n.)  O.E. caru, cearu “sorrow, anxiety, grief,” also “serious mental attention“.

If we turn the word sure on its arse, we get ‘ruse‘.

What’s the one thing you do when you are sure of something?

You stop paying it attention.

You switch off to it.

In a sense,
it dies
for you.

Our etymological dictionary is telling us that:

being freed from care = being ‘freed’ from serious mental attention.

Here are some people who were earlier freed from serious mental attention

care (v.)   O.E. carian, cearian “be anxious, grieve; to feel concern or interest“.

To care IS to ‘live’ to be interested in this world & those all around you. Interest is a fertiliser – whatever you put it upon grows bigger & more important. One of the laws of life is change – grief is one way the the body adjusts to change, joy is another.

Insurance tells you that you your ass is covered & you need not feel those pesky feelings of uncertainty associated with living –  you need not have a care – you may R.I.Peace of mind.

Insurance exists because we swallowed the cancerous belief in a Just World. Thus bad things MUST be made ‘right’. If we have been ‘good’ (i.e. followed laws, made sacrifices, compromised) we must be rewarded or compensated.

Ever wonder why it is that the safer we have become, the more fearful we have gotten?

Safer is an anagram of fears

Yet there’s more to this because we have been taught to fearfear‘.

Fear is a part of being alive, or caring, so perhaps it should not be surprising that:

scared is an anagram of sacred
& at its heart
lies
care‘.

Emotions are good. They do a fine job.

But that which feeds on us Western morsels seems to have a taste for super-savoury humans keeping our emotions revved to maximum piquancy.

Each day we are media-marinated with lashings of fear. The message is clear.

Danger Will Robinson, danger!

So let me tell you my story of driving a car without insurance, & without wearing a seatbelt.

What was your first reaction? Something like …

“Oh that’s bad … so dangerous!”

Really? Did you think of that by yourself? Or … was it pulled from your propaganda files?

Oh never mind, just stop interrupting & let me finish.

Here is what I learned,
so you don’t have to.

I learned what it feels like to drive with a feeling of freedom & attention. I learned to keep my distance. I learned to be alert. I learned that at times I would feel the urge to put my seat-belt on (& then would do so). I learned that I liked the feeling of connection I had.

I got fined $150 by a policemen who said he was sorry, but …

Those weeks were an experiment. I give credit to the Celtic Rebel who talked of seat-belts as a ‘control mechanism’ – that thought intrigued me. Even though I was a single mother whose child depended on her, I opted to experiment with this.

Almost everyone I have told since, has been shocked at me. What an irresponsible thing to do, why dot-dot-dot

“I could have been killed”

Let’s try that from another angle.

I could have stayed dead

Please don’t cancel your insurance or take a chainsaw to your seat-belt – for one thing the legal penalties hurt, for another I was extremely focused on my experiment. That said please do feel very free to digest my experience & wonder where else in your life you are so decomposingly-safe.

The concept of a Just World acts like insurance.

We pay whatever premium is demanded, to keep ourselves & our loved ones ‘safe‘, in a world we are told is ever-so-dangerous.

Actually it’s pretty bloody ridiculous …

… just what we will do

… to insure ourselves

… against

… an endless array of ‘threats’.

Anagrams of the alchemical English language can tell us a great deal.

Just see here ..
see hear ..
c-heer

.. tucked inside every
threat
lies both

… a heart & the Earth.

Maybe fear is simply
an emotion
telling you
that
life
is close by.

Let’s return to the idea of a Just World & today’s catch-phrase:

Believing in the Just World leads us into self-delusion, denial & acts of cruelty against ourselves & others

The symbol for Justice has long looked like this

scale (n2.)   “pan of a balance,” late 14c. …from P.Gmc. *skælo “split, divide“.

That’s kinda interesting dontcha think?

‘Cos when you split something say, like a mind, it’s very, very hard to get it back in balance again:

schizophrenia  … the term means a “splitting of mental functions.”

It’s kinda strange too, the way …

just

=

righteous in the eyes of God

while

scales

=

justice

because
God’s just not that
into scales.

Acts 9:18

Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he could see again

This begs the question, just what exactly are we supposed to believe about blind Justice?

Since the 15th century, Lady Justice has often been depicted wearing a blindfold. The blindfold represents objectivity

Oh yes of course. Oh wait what’s this?

blind (v.)   “deprive of sight,” early 13c., from O.E. blendan “to blind, deprive of sight; deceive

Now where was that line about believing in a just world?

Thus we grow up needing to see the world as a Just World, & our need often blinds us to reality

Right I’m going to leave this here for now.  My intention is to follow up with the more info that is begging for inclusion. But my life is very topsy-turvy at the moment & for now I go where I need to.

This has hopefully been a meal for thought.

All the text in this color comes from “My Dearest Enemy, My Dangerous Friend‘ by Dorothy Rowe.

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July 13, 2012. Uncategorized.

9 Comments

  1. Anadæ Quenyan Effro replied:

    Thanks for writing and publishing this piece, Alex. It also brought to mind a certain long forgotten music video. Funnily enough, I only just learned of a certain farmer activist today, Joel Salatin, also born in ’57 like me, and also a fellow resident of the Old Dominion like me. I see mys’elf acclimating more towards self-sufficiency & farming, perhaps an intuition of changing times to come in the not-too-distant future. Also, watch out for the after-effects of that solar flare our star just shed yesterday, alleged to hit home here on Earth tomorrow night. Cheers, Alex, it really does get better ~ Anadae from Apple Mountain (•8-D

  2. Fitzy replied:

    Excellent article Alex, and rather a devastating broadside at the feel good crowd, once the blinders come off life gets interesting. I favour the notion that at heart, Humans are decent.
    However, given the success of the elite and the media in conditioning western (if not all) people into being, rapacious, ego centric, selfish, callous, cruel, pathological liars – that seems like wishful thinking.
    One thing is usually true, in times of plenty, typically people are generous, or at least, live and let live.
    In times of scarcity, the dog eat dog meme comes a callin’, despite that, i’ve seen massive kindness during the Earthquakes here. We were all suffering, but few took it on themselves to go-a-rapin’.
    Actually that started after the recovery (huh!) kicked off, when big money came a circling the blood stain, sniffing exceptional profits at the expense of a ravage community. Lions of industry my ass, more like the vultures of hades, or the feacal bacteria from the first pederast in hell.
    Anywho, the knee jerk reaction, when seeing the world as being dominated by psychopathic assholes, is to go into denial. Or into preprogrammed SHOCK, so as to limit any net positive effect one might have on improving the situation. Something i’ve learnt to by-pass, and replace with inner determination, the world can be cold and cruel, but WE HUMANS can choose to be WISE and COMPASSIONATE.
    Nuff said, another well written post, and as always a pleasure to read.

  3. alex robinson replied:

    Cheers Anadae – enjoyed the song, even tho’ they wouldn’t let it load in nz :)

    Thanks for the tip on the solar flare, did some research today – was very interested to find that a real big one hit just before my mother cracked.

    It’s a time of change, I’m good with that, would not be walking the roads I am without it. May your roads be bountiful & fruitful too.

    Gracias Fitzy
    I’m with you, have always thought that humans were good eggs, that was why something in me jumped for joy when I first read the suggestion that it was an outside influence that was fucking with us.

    Keep up your great work.
    Joy to your family

  4. Michael Skaggs replied:

    Well done my friend. I enjoyed the flash back to the religious programming that we dwell in a ‘just world’. In the west, we young lads, are bombarded with justice wielding super heroes to emulate.

    I too do believe most people are good eggs when they are presented with a moments notice situation. Comes from the “gut” doesn’t it?

    More solar flare bombardment, not a surprise at all! Wonder if those pesky chemtrails reduce or enhance the effects of those?

    Cheers!

  5. Shane replied:

    Loved this post, Alex. I’m reminded of a time when I revealed to you how much more alive I felt while driving without a permit or a license. Going with the natural world’s lawlessness and choosing to be “bad” can be quite invigorating. :)

  6. Biggi replied:

    Thank you for another mind blowing post, Alex!
    Herzlichst, Brigitte

  7. Patrick O'Neal replied:

    Remain in a state of constant flux Alex, and readers.
    Be able to change.
    There is a difference
    MOST people think they need to stay where they are -non moving, non moveable type..came into my mind just now.

    Anyways, Alex, and Reader- flux.
    Not ICE.
    If Ice, allow the melting, allow the change.
    It will start inside and spread.

    peace to all

  8. Mick replied:

    Off topic, but of interest regarding the overarching theme of the control of language.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2173335/London-2012-Welcome-Censorship-Olympics.html

  9. alex robinson replied:

    Hiya Michael
    I thought of the Justice League – I think I need to think some more about them :)
    I want to write some more about this topic, because most people are ‘good eggs’, but if the framework of their thinking is corroded, then they fall off walls & then things get broken.
    Very best to you m’dear

    Thanks Shane
    There’s that ‘good’ & ‘bad’ concept that lies behind ‘justness’. Perhaps the exhilaration you felt was more in personally recognising that you had all the skills & commitment & care you needed, without having to first win state approval. We have lost so much of this ability to decide for ourselves – I don’t suggest anarchy, but it is wise to remember that even tho the law decrees we must follow them or pay the price, they are nevertheless things that someone else ‘made up’.

    Recently in NZ, we had a significant change in a road rule – many years ago the govt made up a new rule. We all adjusted & learned to follow it. This year they decided to change back to the old rule.
    Laws are things that other human beings make up – not better humans, not wiser & most often without our approval. It is perhaps wise for us to check in with, & then remember, what feels right for us, even if we are not legally permitted to carry out our wisdom. It’s not about fighting, rather it’s about keeping our wisdom muscles working.

    very best to you

    Brigitte, thank you for having a mind open to the winds of change
    Hugs

    Hi Patrick
    Agreed there is much grace to be had from being able to let go & change.
    Yet there is the time of condensing too, when shapes & patterns & relationships & landmasses must be allowed to form, so that we can play & reshape ourselves.
    To always flow would drain us. To turn to concrete (as we have been doing) hardens & petrifies us. I think now we are ‘melting’, & all manner of things are surfacing – but it won’t be forever. I for one am curious & excited & working very hard to clear the waters so that what is new will not be another variation of the old.

    very best to you

    Cheers Mick – control of & by language is a huge topic.

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