There are many people in the world with definitions and beliefs that justify violence – religious extremists being an example that we are all familiar with, especially these days with the conflicts around the whole ‘Islamic fundamentalist’ point.
Let’s say you are observing the violent behavior of one of these extreme religious groups, and within yourself you are seeing, hey this is not acceptable, people are killing people because they believe that some behavior or other is going against what they believe ‘god’ wants people to do or not do, or say or not say. You’re saying to yourself, this is not productive behavior for the human race, this needs to stop. You see that the behavior of killing and violence is like the ultimate act of saying ‘I am right and you are wrong’. But – you understand that killing people because of something you believe, is not ‘right’ or beneficial, or indicative of practical values that support the human race. Then – you feel powerless, frustrated, angry because I mean, what do you do? What is the solution when faced with such behavior that is being carried out by so many people? And within this reaction, within this frustration — what’s then easiest thing to do that, according to your experience of powerlessness, of anger, feels the most ‘logical’? Blame of course. All your focus zeroes in on the apparent ‘source’ of what you are experiencing, which is – ‘those people’. And, when you feel powerless and angry toward what someone is doing, what do you want? What are you going to look for? You want to feel like you’re in control, and you’re going to look for a way to try and take the power away from ‘that person’ or people who ‘made me feel like this’. And, in the case of dealing with religious beliefs – you know that when someone’s beliefs are so strongly entrenched that they will kill in the name of their beliefs, that they are going to easily react and experience offense and become upset when you say or do things that go against their beliefs. So, in your mind you realize — ah ha, I have a way to control you, I have a way to manipulate your experience and make YOU feel frustrated! And, isn’t this precisely what is happening in the case of the “Charlie Hebdo” situation? What we are calling “freedom of speech” in this case, really only amounts to an attempt to manipulate how someone experiences themselves, in order to feel like we have some control — in essence, to make ourselves feel good about ourselves, to give ourselves some solution to the powerlessness we experience in the face of such extreme violence.
But is ridicule and mockery really the solution for dealing with millions of people willing to physically harm and kill those who go against what they believe? I mean, when you deliberately antagonize and provoke reaction in someone that you know wants to KILL you for doing so, and very readily has the means to do so — you are deliberately provoking consequence. The debate over whether we have a ‘right of free speech’ to mock other people’s beliefs, is really not the issue that requires attention here. The problem we face as humanity is not ‘how to protect free speech’, or how to ‘tolerate’ divisive and violent beliefs, it is rather the question of how do we fundamentally take RESPONSIBILITY for who we are, for what we’ve become, for the thoughts, reactions, definitions that direct our physical actions? How can we PRACTICALLY get to the eventual point of being able to live together harmoniously on Earth, standing ALONE without feeling the need to look outside of ourselves for a power to direct our lives for us?
What the “secular” world shows is that, merely renouncing religious beliefs for instance, does not mean that you suddenly are a more ‘evolved’ person who has all the solutions. The state of humanity at the moment is that, whether you have particular religious or spiritual beliefs or not, you still are directed by reactions, emotions, judgments. I mean every day people from all backgrounds and cultures get angry, yell at each other, argue with each other, judge each other ‘secretly’ in thought, and engage in mini-wars centered around the validation of each others’ self definitions and ‘ways of doing things’. Using ‘free speech’ in the name of mockery to try and make people react and then saying ‘oh I’m just ‘expressing my views’, isn’t going to change the beliefs of the millions of people engaging in violent and destructive behavior toward their fellow man. Such behavior only shows a lack of understanding and insight into how to direct such problems to a solution. And, if your speech is dictated by reactions and thoughts and emotional experiences that come up within you without you making a directive decision for it to exist and understanding exactly where it came from and how it exists in you, that make you do things like yell, scream, slam doors, spew words that you later regret, form opinions and ideas about things based on your own self interest rather than how something actually works, and engage in secret conversations in your mind that you’d be afraid to reveal to others — then how can you claim your speech and expression is free anyway?
Thus the message of Desteni, in which we are suggesting that the practical approach to taking on these problems of massive violence that seem to be beyond our ability to stop, is to start with SELF, with the question of – okay, if such behavior is the result of the physical actions being directed by patterns of reactions, thoughts, emotions, feelings built upon a foundation of knowledge and beliefs — how am I accepting and allowing myself to exist as and participate in the SAME starting point — the SAME basic principles of SELF-PROGRAMMING? And, how, from my birth, did I come to exist this way? How did MY OWN programs get installed in me? And how can I STOP my own programs, and become Self-Directed, able to look at living and participating in this world from a starting point of what is best for all life, rather than being directed by the energy and impetus of my own preprogrammed thoughts, feelings, and emotions? And then – as I walk this process of taking Self Responsibility to develop Self Honesty with myself and what exists in me, and as I Forgive Myself for that which I see I accepted and allowed myself to define myself as from a starting point that does not take into consideration all life as one and equal – I share my process of coming to a direct understanding of the nature and content of MY mind, and MY experiences — within understanding that in doing this, I will be assisting and supporting others who can relate to my process, to take Self Responsibility for THEIR mind and THEIR experiences. In this way we develop a group of people who are able to stand as examples through WRITTEN proof, that we as humanity are able to change.
We have to show how we are making practical changes in our own lives, in our own inner world, and how we are changing our decision making process and starting point in the practical, day to day scenarios that we face as a human being, in no longer being directed by reactive patterns and agendas of judgment and blame, and self interested values only used to make ourselves feel good, or feel superior, or feel in control, or feel right. After all, if we are not able to stand one and equal with our own mind and see how the process of self programming actually takes place, how can we ever understand the process of how a person becomes a terrorist, or how any other behavior develops for that matter?