Monday, 15 August 2011

A Meditative Approach to the 2011 Riots in England



Excerpt

Instead of breaking down windows or judging those who do it, we can break down the divisions that we create in our world with a change of mind.

Stepping back and taking an objective viewpoint - a view that doesn’t have us pushing forward at the centre of it.

Not believing or being sucked into the divisions that are constantly being thrust upon us by the media.

Full Article

Last week saw rioting across England like which we had not seen for an entire generation.

I witnessed the Wolverhampton disturbances first hand.

As I was driving home around the ring road of the city a guy with a masked face, on a mountain bike came cycling towards me swerving - trying to look cool to his friends who were marching on the pavement next to him.

I witnessed what you saw on TV or in your street- gangs of people rushing into town to grab themselves a pair of trainers or new mobile phone.

Cars full of lads looking giddily excited as they cruised into the centre of town - ready for action.

Riot police standing oh so still in line with their shields and helmets - crippled by political correctness.

Then opportunist masked looters taking advantage - just like the bankers, politicians, police, businessmen and other people in positions of authority have been doing for oh so long - its just these looters were being watched by the public on CCTV.

Upon observation there seemed a trend in style, look and appearance of the rioters - just like there is when you look at politicians and observe their speech and mannerisms, but to mention it in these times would be frowned upon.

The PC media were quick to point out that a 9 A* GCSE pupil was involved and arrested, an Olympic ambassador, a primary school assistant, and a 11 year old...to mention a few.

The riots were well documented by both the media and members of the public - on some footage you could see a huddle of people gathering around a group of teenagers who set fire to their local store - filming it all on their iPhones dreaming of viral video success when they get home and upload.

I watched as did the whole nation as the events unfolded - with dear friends and family in all the places that were being targeted.

I noticed how the media - always went in with an angle. The angle always seems to be one of division.

Over the past few days since the rioting has subsided it has left me contemplating why is there always so much emphasis on division?

To begin with, the media were desperately attempting to put words into people mouths that the riots were directly as a result of the actions of the police shooting - (stirring up the emotion in peoples mind’s who were watching.)

Then to report on angry shop owners who have had their shops trashed calling for the army and water cannons.

Then to have ‘balanced debates’ (as is extolled by those in higher education) with view points from opposing sides - representatives of the two main political parties discussing, debating and then shouting at each other - on the night of the rioting. With no positive conclusion - the viewer - left confused and disappointed.

Other TV debates with anyone with enough courage to express a clear opinion being deemed as biased and racist - sending the knee jerking Twitter-sphere into a divided frenzy

Political correctness does not dissolve division between people it simply suppresses it and creates an internal atmosphere and environment where it grows and becomes more poisonous.

Then in the aftermath of the riots division between the politicians and the police.

The football season started and the news showed two of the top teams fighting with each other on the opening day.

Division sells stories, stirs souls, fires up - but what comes of it?

Divisions are man made - created by our mind. It feels as though there is a separation and distance between our self and others - sometimes a huge distance, even from the people next door to us.

“Sorry do I know you?”

Is there any real difference - between a greedy banker and desperate looter, between an Arsenal and Newcastle fan, between you and your next door neighbor.

Differences are created by naming and blaming.

There is no real difference - the differences is created by mind - as a result of believing these divisions to be real we have a firm basis for anger and aggression.

A superficial reading of this article with critical faculties turned up to their max can just dismiss this as:

Hippy dippy stuff, we are all one...man, kind of thing - lets go around hugging trees and tell everyone how much we love them.

This response is an easy way of letting the divisive qualities in our mind remain.

There is no difference between us - no one wishes for pain, each of us wishes to improve and have a meaningful life...yet within this at the same time we are all unique.

Instead of concentrating on the differences -
why not focus on the similarities?
Instead of concentrating on faults,
why not focus on the qualities?

Instead of breaking down windows?
why not break down the divisions in your mind?
Instead of sitting on the fence judging violence
why not sit down in the quiet of meditation?

Step back take an objective viewpoint - a view that doesn’t have us pushing forward at the centre of it.

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