In defiance of both the Obama administration and ongoing Indigenous protests, the company behind the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline announced Tuesday that it would soon begin drilling under the Missouri River.
"It's almost as though they have no soul." - This could serve as a description of our entire oligarchy and Western way of life. We seem to have created an economic system, supported by a military machine that is essentially the psychological projection of the psychopathic mind. The notion that "human nature" is greedy, violent and selfish is essentially that psychopathic character. It denigrates and is opposed to the qualities that characterize most human societies on the planet pre-colonization and throughout most of human history, including connection to the earth and social and cooperative systems of human interactions. It is our entire "system" that "has no soul," and we must bring our actual human nature to bear if we hope to have a future.
The title of this article and the first sentence, "In defiance of both the Obama administration..." make it sound like the Obama administration told them to stop. They asked them to stop after permits were already issued so they could reassess. From the article: "The company said it would not halt construction, despite requests by federal agencies to delay the project as the US government reassesses permits and considers possible reroutes."
The EPA has been fighting the fossil fuel industry (and others) with one hand behind its back for years. The regulatory "improvements" that have been made over the last 8 years have been superficial and are filled with exemptions and time-frames that cater to industry. It gives the population a false sense of security. Most people are not aware (and will not be aware) of the contaminates and insults they are exposed to until something drastic or "newsworthy" happens.
Regarding the drilling, transport, and use of fossil fuels, take a look at the 50-75 year plans of various fossil fuel-related companies. They have, and have had, plans to extract and use every drop of oil they possibly can for decades into the future - no plans to stop regardless of who is president.
As Ladonna Bravebull Allard, an Indigenous water protector was quoted in the article, "...we have suffered under all the American presidents since the establishment of America. Nothing changes for us."
It's not "almost." The Earth has many walking in two-legged form who do not have human hearts or souls.
The old ones know that such have always been among us. "Civilization" and the state have created conditions most favorable for their multiplication. "The Enlightenment" tried to convince everyone that the souless did not exist by making the soul itself appear as a foolish fancy, for primitives, including, of course, women and children....
Can we agree now that this phenomenally egocentric experiment in denying what everyone's ancestors always knew has been a colossal failure?
The soul is. It can be uplifted and encouraged, or neglected and brutalized. When we subject the soul--the soul of a person, a community, a mountain, a river--to cruelty, life becomes cruel, and soul is lost...
And when soul is lost, life is torment. And death, no respite.
Einstein is reported to have said that we can never solve problems from the same level of consciousness that created them.
Seeing souless monsters operating so blatantly everywhere these days is certainly providing a powerful incentive for us to grow our consciousness. It is so clear, now, that we're going to have to evolve to solve...
Listen to the old ones within and without who tell you how to identify the souless, and what to do about them.
Feed your own soul, and the soul of life. Go where it tells you to go, do what it tells you to do, be what it knows You Are.
Refuse to do or be anything else, and I mean anything! Your job, your taxes, your credit card bills--how fast would everything change if everyone who felt their soul's true response to these things simply refused to engage with them any further? Starting NOW!?
(I took some empowering actions in these areas today. Ahhhhh....)
What are we waiting for? What do we have to lose? Water is life. The Black Snake threatens each and every one of us.
May the election liberate us all from the delusion that we still have something to gain from denying our souls' knowing.
And may it liberate us from the delusion that if we're just nice and patient and polite enough to things that don't have souls, maybe they won't hurt us!!!
" Its our entire system that has no soul."
The election of Trump just corroborated your quote!
Absolutely and we can start by supporting the water warriors/protectors to defend the right of a livable planet for all. The ecological imperative is crying out for our collective resistance, the one overarching crisis. Collapsing eco systems, an unlivable planet make all else moot points.
When one reads your post surely their heart must grow wings. Yes, this election should galvanize us and anger--not patience and politeness-- has its place when it is directed at that which enslaves us. Let us stand with these water protectors.
The full article as it appeared in The Guardian is here in the link below:
I was very disturbed to see the following quote near the end of the article, which does not appear in the Common Dreams abridgment:
“Are indigenous people so invaluable that now that Dakota Access is to the water, does it not matter to anyone that people are going to start laying down their lives?” asked Eryn Wise, a member of the Jicarilla Apache and Laguna Pueblo tribes."
I would like to see the pipeline cancelled altogether - and I was in the oil business for eighteen some years - in the 'patch' of western Canada. Now I am a dedicated environmentalist.
Climate Change is as dangerous as it gets, but before anyone escalates the situation to the point of "laying down their lives" - I would like to remind everyone that there are - how many oil and gas pipelines now operating in North America?
Hundreds - or is it thousands, and many of them, perhaps most, cross over or under rivers. One more isn't going to change the simple fact that throughout our collective biosphere we have polluted, degraded or outright poisoned land, sea and air.
Tens of thousands of chemicals are loose canons in the environment - there is still Fukushima's meltdowns, ongoing, and over four hundred operational commercial nuclear power plants worldwide.
Then there is the matter of the seven point three billion people and their livestock - on a planet which may have reached the breaking point at five billion - and we are going to ten, if the UN is correct, by mid-century.
Then there is pandemic disease, artificial intelligence - chemical and nuclear weapons of mass destruction in the hands of some spectacularly unstable regimes, and on and on.
Lets sit around a big campfire, all of us, and discuss these matters. The face to face, sharing of food, or even this internet chatter on blogsites like this is drawing the world together.
There is no justification, either logically or even instinctively, to literally throw away one's life given the situation.
Right now, Standing Rock is known worldwide - and respected, for many reasons, and let me restate - it matters not one whit whether this pipeline goes under the Missouri - given all I have pointed out above.
Positive vibes are emanating from #NODAPL right now - lets keep it that way.
REQUESTS are when you call up the local radio station and ask the DJ to play your favorite song. When a band of thugs prepares to endanger the lives of all on the Reservation and the drinking water and farmland of millions of Americans, the job of a President is to call out the National Guard to protect the site, and a legion of US Marshals to arrest the corporate heads who ordered the crime. Then you "pull a Harry Truman" and nationalize the offending companies. If all that doesn't earn their respect, then you get tough!
Yes. Obama has once again shown us his weak-kneed mealy-mouthed catering to the elite side. It's in a way worse than Trump's blatantly arrogant dismissal of environmental concerns, because it leads people to believe he (Obama) might actually give a flying fig about our planet. Which he evidently does not.
I have been enjoying your posts consistently. But this time, I have an issue with one part of your comment.
Who are you to say that this Black Snake is no particular threat, since there are all these other pipelines crossing rivers, and all these other terrible threats besides?
Who are you to state that there's no good reason for anyone to give up their life in this struggle?
Who says the ultimate aim of this game is to stay alive as long as possible, no matter what?
Who says that water protectors offering their lives will bring "bad vibes?" The violence inherent in that situation is replete with "bad vibes" already.
The soul's reality is not simply logical; it is also a Dream.
Perhaps this Black Snake is not simply this piepline, this river, but also the particular dimensions of this place, this moment, the history of the land and the spirits of ancestors as well as living humans.
Perhaps the water protectors who are called to lay down their lives out there (and it does seem horribly likely that some will be) know something you don't already know.
Certainly they know their souls better than you could...
Your reply makes me feel you must be enjoying a fair degree of comfort still, as this world burns. Like maybe you've never been to the point where you've been subjected to so much violence, injustice, and cruelty, with no hope of things ever improving, that you realize your life is the last gift you can offer back to the One who gave it...to the children and the rest of our relations...
It's a tough place to be--but from there, invincible warriors of love are born.
I find that people who've been very fortunate imagine that there is nothing worse than death, or nothing worth dying for, while those who have experienced torture often feel differently.
And indeed, as long as we cling to this life as if it is all, and avoid death as if it were the worst thing that could happen, we play right into the hands of the souless. We are ripe to be enslaved when we forget that we are truly free--and that our freedom extends to the right to move across the Veil between life and death on our own terms.
So I pray that we all examine our hearts and souls now. Find out what we think we have to lose, and whether it really matters. Find out what's worth living--and dying--for, and act accordingly.
Since when did the gov. not stop something they really didn't want happening? They had Homeland Security down the street to search a pedophile's house for evidence even though they knew he wasn't there. "Just because he worked at the jail as a juvenile correction officer. Even a swat team would have been too much. I thought there was a stand-off between a kidnapper holding a victim captive. It was quite bizarre and something I won't forget for quite some time. The corrupt cronies just don't care about anyone, but money and misery of mankind. Oil is big money and money is what they care about. That is the elitist that is behind this and their drive for ultimate power over us all. The native Americans have been treated dirty since day one. History books in the schools are BS. We need to plead to President Trump to stop this. Then we will see if he is who he says he is! I wish I could be there to stand with our American friends. God be with you and bless you. I will continue to send support to go fund me and know that there are many standing with you. You are so brave for standing up to them for your rights. Braver than many of the people today who just riot and burn cities. Just the way you have handled this situation has shown that you do things peaceably and I commend you for that. I can not say that for many others. No one should judge people by the color of their skin, but what is in their hearts. You are a great American and keep standing strong!!! I will continue to pray to God that he will send his angels to help you in your time of need.
Hello Lisa - from Calgary !
Who am I to say these things.
Just a man, who has seen and experienced much.
I know both comfort and discomfort - elation and despair.
And I am afraid I am getting rather long in the tooth, and like Cochise in his last days, contemplating mortality more and more.
I have learned that advice is just another form of criticism, and I sincerely hope that my words did not have the appearance of advice - but it seems they have come across that way.
You are right - I am not in your shoes - I have never lived on a reservation, been subjected to what the Native Americans have.
But is is also true that we share a common humanity - and though circumstances differ, often radically - we are all more the same than different.
I have tried in my previous post, not to give advice, but to tell a story.
A story of Earth - and its people - its land and seas - its lifeforms.
This time is probably going to be called The Anthropocene - because of the overwhelming impact human beings have had on the pre-human being natural world.
I have tried to tell a story for all - to listen to and take in - in the hope that something may be of value in each person's decisions to act, or not to act, and especially, to live or die.
There are, I think, things worth fighting and dying for.
In all likelihood, given the Trump win, this pipeline will be completed, and perhaps it will pass under the Missouri.
If some on site decide that this is worth dying for - I will be saddened and uplifted, both at the same time.
But what I have said will still be true, and I well know how reactive can be the warrior in a man, or in a woman, when a contrived situation gets out of hand.
Is it not the case that some, on the wrong side of this pipeline standoff, would just love to see escalation and violence?
Is this wise - to play into their hands?
Is it necessary?
Or would it be better to fight another way?
Life is very precious - and not only to the ones who may die.
To fail to see that the presence of the pipeline is ALREADY "escalation and violence" is to play into the hands of the 'preemptive' premise that places the interests of a corporation above 'laws' not only legislated by the dominant society, but the fact that those laws exist because of immutable principles from which they were in part drawn.
I take it you too are long in the tooth !
I always have some difficulty deciphering your sometimes cryptic messaging?
So far, as far as I am aware, no one has died at the Missouri River standoff.
I would like to keep it that way.
I read an article recently, and the link and name of the native woman at Standing Rock escapes me for the moment, but she said in effect:
'that having been on the land, engaged face to face with the community present, that this had been what she had been waiting for all her life.'
Now that is something I can understand - relate to - having experienced this same feeling on hundreds of mountain and desert outings and expeditions.
Positive vibes all the way - finding the jewel in the lotus blossom if you will, and unexpectedly.
As we speak, pipelines are going in - everywhere - to exercise some poetic license.
In Nigeria, in Canada, by wild salmon spawning grounds, across Siberia, by the Black Sea... - everywhere.
Yes, and at the Missouri River in North Dakota.
What if we turned all these positive vibes from Standing Rock into, say, an honest to God tunnel under the Missouri, perhaps at its narrowest point, linked to roads, with the pipeline itself on cement and steel pedestals, accessible and monitored 24/7, with the shut off valves under the control, or joint control, of Native American 'water protectors???
I am a geologist by training, a mountaineer and explorer by inclination - and I am a family man by great good fortune, having married late in life, with a twelve year old son, who goes by the Internet name of Cloudrunner
Of course this standoff is already violent.
Stand directly in someone's way walking down the street and refuse to let him or her pass and you will see this clearly.
BUT - Necessity, as I have found, is the only good reason for doing anything, and the question before us is a simple one I hope:
Is one more pipeline, under one more river, worth the life of anyone on site?
My answer is unequivocally no.
But then I am, after all, not there.
And so another event will play out without me being there - this time - by this bulge in the Missouri River.
It might help to remain the slightest bit humble, and realize that we environmentalists have been losing battles seemingly forever.
The problem, in a much larger sense than this one pipeline at this one place, sacred as it is to many, is in effect no different than the sacred places all over the world which have already been bulldozed out of existence.
Stay alive and fight in a different way - and with a more comprehensive perspective.
The human species is at some not insignificant risk of now terminating forever our tenure on this planet.
We need this larger perspective to survive, and we need to experience what that Native woman experienced at Standing Rock alluded to earlier - a coming together on OUR LAND.
Here is another suggestion - a book - a particular weakness of mine - books:
This book has several tremendous features, not insignificantly - it is small and easy to carry around - beautifully written, and sums up the larger predicament we all find ourselves in at this point in history.
The author is both a veteran and a scholar.
Boy am I long in the tooth, and at times winded. Between you and me we could give the north wind a celebratory challenge.
Its always good to see humility brought into the picture - its strength is, in my opinion, grossly underestimated in too many aspects of westernized society.
Interesting idea of elevating and 24/7 monitoring of the pipeline - but why on indigenous lands without prior consultation when non-indigenous civic life DID GET prior CONSULTATION and said NO, even with it buried and out-of-sight-out-of-mind?
Tough questions - not in their elemental justice and logic , but in terms of how it is that we both know the answer and must continue to keep the discussion going if for no other reason than to keep the ideas front and center of as many eyes ("I"s - maybe that is the cryptic meaning of 'is' so caked in cleverness by Clinton).
Always good to engage with you
I hear you, and you still feel like a friend and ally.
Re: offering advice. I appreciate your softening around this point.
I would like to see males in general be extremely care-ful (and consistently, over a long period of time) about this habit of speaking "authoritatively" to females.
We feel it when you do it, no matter what you say or think about it. Just as people of color feel the unconscious supremacy of white people, no matter what whites say or think about it.
Yes, sometimes we who've been on the bottom generate "false positives" in such territory.
Mostly, we don't.
If anything, those who have been long tormented have long generated too many "false negatives," failing to respond early enough and strongly enough to prevent our bodies, hearts, and souls from being destroyed by domination disguised as lovingkindness...
It is incumbent upon those who have been enjoying the spurious privileges of rank to put them down. To walk and talk with respect for the immune systems of those who have long been dominated. We are the local experts on what domination does--and doesn't--feel like.
The process for changing unconscious habits is the same in every case, and it's simple: 1) awareness; 2) inhibition; 3) replacement with a more ecological alternative. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat....
In the case of men, women and advice, here's a simple game that helps things flow more smoothly:
1) Awareness: guys, start noticing every time you use the "authoritative" tone with a woman.
Since you are unaware of when and how you do this, humbly ask the women in your life to help you.
It's best if they do so by giving you a quiet non-verbal signal when you do the "authoritative" thing. You need to not feel attacked in any way. You're friends, playing a game!
If your survival biology kicks in, you're unavailable to learning. Go slow. Breathe deep. Smile, even if you don't feel like it! Smiling makes you feel like smiling...then you're available to learning again.
2) Inhibition: When you notice yourself falling into the "authoritative" tone or gestures, or when a woman who loves you gives you this signal, pause.
Yes, that means stop talking!
Breathe. Undo any excess muscular tension you can find, around your eyes, in your belly, in your chest.
Smile. You are ending countless generations of violence, right here right now.
3) Replacement: Find a way to invite the woman to share more, perhaps by asking a gentle question.
Repeat, repeat, repeat...
This a kind of everyday "reparation" for thousands of years of brutal torture and enslavement of women. It is an immediate deescalation in the longest running war on the planet, and an offering to lasting peace.
Best of all, guys, it costs nothing! And pays excellent dividends!
(Well, there could be the momentary sting of pride, or simple awkwardness. Small price to pay to end thousands of years of torture and genocide...)
You only have to play to win. Win one for the whole damn planetary team, this time.
Smother and decommission the "Black Snake". It must be done!
I'm going to take a break on writing here. I feel discouraged by consistently speaking from and for the heart and seeing, once again, that many "progressives" think this is a petty distraction from the "real" issues.
We're not going to change the dynamics that have created the Black Snake without changing the balance among heart, head, body and soul. We're not going to do that by mental fiat! It takes different tools, different practices...
This is an effort that requires, and deserves, total dedication from all lovers of life.
But you only know that when you do.
'Nuff said, for sure.
Well, this topic of women undergoing 'torture and enslavement' is a long ways from the original topic about the #NODAPL subject !
I can think immediately of two women, one an Apache, the other a Celt - both warrior cultures.
Lozen (c. 1840-June 17, 1889) was a female warrior and prophet of the Chihenne Chiricahua Apache. She was the sister of Victorio, a prominent chief. Born into the Chihenne band during the 1840s, Lozen was, according to legends, able to use her powers in battle to learn the movements of the enemy. According to James Kaywaykla, Victorio introduced her to Nana, "Lozen is my right hand ... strong as a man, braver than most, and cunning in strategy. Lozen is a shield to her people".
She was a Celtic Queen who burned Roman London to the ground a very long time ago.
There is a magnificent huge bronze statue of her in her war chariot - on the banks of the Thames River by Big Ben in London, Great Britain.
Personally, my own experiences confirm that such women exist today.
I think I would prefer to stick to the issues on Common Dreams.