I have been recently reading Volume 1 of Derek Jensen’s book Endgame, “The Problem’s of Civilization,” and oh boy there are a lot of problems. If you have any interest in environmentalism I highly recommend Derek’s works, he has a very unique and realistic perspective of our current situation and he doesn’t sugar coat anything, something I very much appreciate.
First off I want to say it has been a long time since I have struggled so much with a book. I am a voracious reader, and the fact that I’ve had this book over a week and I’m barely a quarter through it says something to the depth of it’s contents. There have been many times were I either found myself re-reading pages or a specific entry again and again trying to grasp a concept, or just setting the book down and staring off into space as I contemplate the true meaning of the words in front of me.
There will most likely be quite a few posts on this book, and others as I work to grasp the severity of what we have done to ourselves, and to Mother Earth, and figure out what it is I can do to help fix it.
One of the most impactful things I have come across thus far is the concept of “ghost slaves.” Derek writes of how civilization is based on slavery, always has been and probably always will be, and even today we participate in the slavery practice. Both as slaves and slavers.
Now before you get defensive or angry (much like I did) let me explain. How many people do you know who hate their jobs, in fact how many times have you heard the saying, “A slave to the institution?” I’m guessing a lot. I know for myself I am constantly dealing with emotions of inadequacy and frustration and the feeling that there is supposed to be more to life then working myself to death just to survive, and then having little to no time to live. We are a slave to civilization, and it is an atrocity that we are expected to enslave ourselves first to an educational system that is in fact doing the opposite of what it claims to do (more on that later), and then to a work force that is barely humane. What’s worse is that we have gotten used to it, and accept it as the norm.
Regarding our participation as slavers, this is where “ghost slaves” comes in. The idea is that through our use of electricity, combustion engines, we have gone from expending our own energy, to expending the energies of others, including Mother Earth, and she can’t take much more. Then there’s buying from corporations and companies that make a business out of destroying the lives of those whose waters are poisoned, air polluted by their manufacturing and other activities, the lives of those across the world enslaved to work for mere pennies to make our clothes, cars, harvest our food, and the life of the very planet we depend on for, well, for everything.
Something needs to change, and it starts with us, it starts with acknowledging there is a problem, then educating ourselves, and doing everything we can to take down those who profit off of death and destruction, and taking small steps to preserve what little is left of our very special planet.
Together we create change.