Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Hanging from the ceiling

Okay, I'm going to take a break today from the usual rage against the machine. What I'd like to do instead is quote you just a part of another blog that takes a different and very tempting downhill charge at the uphill battle we're all engaging (most often without much success).

But before I spin you off in that direction, let me just remark in passing of its author, John Farr. As a wannabe Taoseno, I was drawn to Farr's writing a couple years ago. Delivering a morsel of Taos life when I was most homesick to be back there was just the elixir I needed.

So rapt by what I read, I decided next trip to northern New Mexico, I would pursue this John Farr. Fortunately for him, my wife and I got hopelessly lost on the infinite dirt roads south of Taos. While we never found Farr, we did discover another side to Taos previously unknown to us which was pleasant in itself. And, having made my attempt, I was able to lay to rest my flirtation with stalking poor John Farr.

But in another recent attack of extreme homesickness for Taos, I was fortunate to rediscover the writing of John Farr. What follows is just a carrot on a stick. A teaser. I'm hoping, after a nip or two you'll be enticed, as was I, to lunge for the whole carrot. To follow the link, finish the story and think about your belief system from a different angle. Maybe upside down, from the other side, or inside out. I know I am.

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Hope Sucks Tuesday, May 2nd, 2006
by John Farr

That’s not exactly how environmental activist Derrick Jensen puts it in the latest issue of Orion Magazine, but pretty close. There’s an online version of his essay “Beyond Hope” available here, and I urge everyone to have a look:

Frankly, I don’t have much hope. But I think that’s a good thing. Hope is what keeps us chained to the system, the conglomerate of people and ideas and ideals that is causing the destruction of the Earth.

To start, there is the false hope that suddenly somehow the system may inexplicably change. Or technology will save us. Or the Great Mother. Or beings from Alpha Centauri. Or Jesus Christ. Or Santa Claus. All of these false hopes lead to inaction, or at least to ineffectiveness… False hopes bind us to unlivable situations, and blind us to real possibilities.

This is powerful stuff and something you may not have considered. Jensen is saying that we have to embrace despair — despair being an appropriate response to the desperate situation we’re in — and then we’ll be free to act: .............

He’s speaking of the destruction of the planet, which obviously trumps everything else, including politics, but his argument speaks directly to something I’ve commented on at various sites in the progressive blogosphere, namely that the American experiment is over.

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I hope that was enough to grab you and make you want to read the rest here. Trust me, it'll be well worth your time.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dada, that's some powerful food for thought. "When you quit relying on hope & instead begin to protect people, things & places you love, you become very dangerous to those in power ... What happens next is up to you."

I don't know about hope sucking, but appreciated his viewpoint & agree hope by itself doesn't accomplish much. It's what we DO with our hope that may define all our futures.

I also enjoyed great Taos pictures Mr. Farr posted on his Grack! website. Beautiful, but so much snow in winter (yikes). Gorgeous "stalking" place, though! Thanks for linking him. ps, is it just me, or does the author look a lot like actor James Cromwell (who danced in "Babe")??? D.K.

dada said...

DK....thanks for mentioning the Taos pictures over on Farr's site. I hadn't seen them. It took me quite a while to find them...and my face turned red when I saw the link "Photographer"...

wow, why hadn't I thought to look there first? As for the resemblence to James Cromwell, I confess, I don't remember James Cromwell or much about the movie actually, although I did see it.

Anonymous said...

I should have mentioned I clicked on FotoFeed on Mr. Farr's "Grack!" website & that's where I found many beautiful Taos pix. Would've saved you a lot of searching, eh?

"Babe" was the pig movie ... a baby pig escaping the horrid-raised-for-slaughter lifestyle. The animals all talk to each other & some were quite funny. Really, a kid's movie that I somehow enjoyed. And James Cromwell is an underrated & underused actor. How many Tom Cruise & Vin Diesel movies can the public stand anyway? D.K.

enigma4ever said...

I love this Hope Sucks piece....really hit home...in a very nice poignant way....Sorry I have been so gone for so long- 3 whole weeks- nice to know that the same WTF shit is rolling down the same hil from the WH....whelp I will lurk here for a bit and see if I can learn a thing or two...or hell, maybe even rant and rave or laugh...still love your blog....I hope to see Maine Friend here too...

dada said...

D.K. I remember "Babe" (who could forget that little voice). But apparently James Cromwell doesn't get enough work. I don't even know him.

Oh, perhaps you remember I shared with you a quote once on the "girl power" of Taos? That was written by Farr. (And from my own experience there, I found it to be really true.)

dada said...

e4e! You've become as evasive as our vice president. But unlike Cheney who pops up either threatening others or actually hurting 'em, you appear after nurturing or helping others.

Well, welcome back. Wow....how good it is to see you.! Looking forward to your next entry on Watergate Summer. To hear how Sol's progressing.

BTW, "hope to see Maine friend here too," is the hope of many of us here. Much like e4e, he seems to have vanished from our radar screens. Hopefully, as with yourself, he'll be back again soon.

In the meantime, Welcome Back! and thanks for dropping by.

enigma4ever said...

oooops I meant to say DK also...so sorry....

Maine Friend will be along shortly...I just know it..