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Grace and Pathology

I hope it would not be a parody of Michael Morrell’s political scientific position
to suggest all relationships are political
and all political relationships fall somewhere on a spectrum
between perfect co-empathic trust,
nutritionally and regeneratively favored by creolizing democracy,
and completely mutual distrust, antipathy,
a rabidly nihilistic strain
of totalitarian ballistic terrorism.

Should this spectrum amply describe tensions between democratic multiculturing trust
and plutocratically elitist monoculturing mistrust
then perhaps we can also see this spectral tension
between positive-regenerate social-psychology
and negative-degenerating entropic nihilism;
between cooperativity of Both/And empathic feeling and faith
and competing Either/Or antipathy
hardened reductively negative belief systems
with absence of good and healthy faith.

We might further stretch this same relational spectrum
to include hope and faith and love
as growing stages of healthy positive psychology,
so despair, and selfish faithlessness,
and raging sociopathic hatred
are parallel emerging stages
of pathologically negative anthropocentric
and egocentric
ecopolitics.

Within this wide egocentric Yang and eco-centric Yin spectrum
we learn and grow and develop our positive and negative psychology,
our health and our pathology,
as regenerative trends and our degenerative decompositional losses
into mutual immunity silos of autonomous self and other hatred;
historically characteristic of densely swarming over-populations,
beyond what Earth can ecosystemically hold and feed and enrich.

In this light and dark nondual co-arising view,
I read Dale B Martin’s understanding of how he can both be a person of Christian faith
and a student of religious and theological dark histories.

“It may well be that I have [positive psychology] faith
just because I was raised that way.
Having grown up in a religious [regenerative-normed] family,
itself the [bilateral-maternal and paternal] product of generations
of Christian people,
I may be psychologically inclined
or [co-empathic trust] habituated
to assume some ultimate [balancing] meaningfulness
of the [yang-yin nondual] universe
and the [healthy] centrality of [ecopolitical] faith for life
[rather than nihilistic despair].”

“Moreover,
my family
though attending a very conservative [homophobic] church,
was generally liberal and [inclusively] progressive.
We weren’t particularly bothered if others did not go to church
or went to a different church
[or adhered to a different positive faith system].”

Professor Martin is a brilliant “out” gay white Texas-reared male
now tenured at Yale.
Because of his family’s progressive co-empathic trust,
his parents quickly acclimated their love,
with a heterosexual-norm presumption,
to love for their gay son,
just another creative stretch of their inclusive and always yet-emerging
positive health psychology.

The primary difference between Dale Martin’s Texas experience
and my own rural Michigan experience,
was my absence of a liberal/progressive parental support system
restraining and creolizing the pathological hubris of elitist-supremacist
“from above” messianic grace
rather than “from deep within” co-empathically trusting grace
and karma.

With that difference,
Dale Martin’s positive Christian psychology has been continuous
throughout his still emerging family tree extension
to include the treasures of other regenerative traditions,
while my own journey has been more discontinuous and disjointed,
stressed and stretching
to ultimately arrive at peace with eco-messianic trust
in regenerative MotherEarth,
compatible with co-redemptive messianism,
in a lavishly creolizing composting transubstantiatingly inclusive way,
fractured and reset
rather than organically whole over my lifetime of Christian rediscovery,
as is the more continuously regenerative faith system
of Professor Martin’s still-emerging grace story.

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Ground of Becoming

Aristotle thought happiness is the foundation of existence.
Since then, others have worried that maybe survival is closer
to their own more suffering experience.

I don’t exactly disagree with Aristotle,
or with those on the more suffering side of our species.
But, where these two come together, in my experience,
is within the context of health v pathology.

To me, happiness is the Yang-face of health’s Yin-face,
so it is these two together co-arising the foundation
of ego’s regenerative existence,
and degenerative subclimate pathologies.

In learning happy health,
life lived ever more fully,
gracefully,
positive karmically,
as in gaming,
the stress of stretching one’s offensive capacities
is reduced by the belief that we have a perfect defense.
We know there are no WinLose strategic players;
only WinWin intent.
Because we know through co-empathic experience
and the evidence of Earth’s evolution,
that WinWin always optimizes happy-health,
while WinLose suboptimizes
opportunities for developing further co-empathic learning capacities.

So too,
defensive concerns soften and languish
by constant feedback that we have a flawless happy-health offensive strategy for further WinWin learning.

In the real world
there is no more a perfectly conservative defense
against unhealthy suffering
than there is a perfectly evolving offense toward happy health.

In learning healthier living,
cognitive-affective dissonance is our defense against polypathic co-empathy,
our oppositional resistance.

Empathic happy-health psychology,
a deep awareness of our ecopolitical equivalence,
empowers Basic Attendance (0)-sum balance,
our regenerative offensive-centered listening position
for learning effectively,
balancing nurture with challenge,
by noticing our own cognitive-affective defenses,
without which we would have no radical sense of autonomous identity,
no monoculturing monotheistic monochromatic severed ego.

So too, without our primal co-empathic relationship
with our mentoring environment,
we could have no interdependent. ecological happy-health identities.

And yet,
our ego-patriotic conserving defense of happiness
remains a secondary form
in relation to our RightBrain matriotic nurturance function
of a healthy regenerative climate,
learning atmosphere,
ecological integrity of ego-resilient polypaths.

LeftBrain Aristotle thought happiness is the foundation of existence,
because his RightBrain noticed health as his ground of becoming.

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Imagine

Imagine you live in a daily environment
where and when everything you like
is already yours if you simply ask for this whatever with gratitude,
and is more frustratingly ungraspable if you cannot acquire sufficient gratitude to ask.

And, it doesn’t even matter whom you ask.
So you need not be troubled by complexities,
historically epic narratives,
about who owns what,
and who does not,
because everyone you meet knows it is their vocation,
it is among their reasons for being,
to give you whatever you want,
whenever you want it with sufficient gratitude.

How might you respond to such power and riches,
to both give and to receive
such fertile perfection potential?
How might we cooperatively rule our fertile rich black soils
and sparkling clear clean rivers,
and smile back at our mutually-held blue sky?

And yet, these powers are not yet polypathically magical.
You do not have powers to be someone else.
You cannot look at a perfectly beautiful body
and gratefully claim it as your own.

You do have the power to speak and listen with each of those perfectly beautiful bodies
and/or minds
about how and why and when and where you treasure them,
value them,
and would become a mind and/or body exactly like theirs,
an identical twin.

You do have the power to ask them, with gratitude,
to help you see and hear and smell and taste their beauty,
but not to become their beauty for them.

Becoming health and beauty powers with others
grateful for our most intimate mutually grateful availability,
vulnerability,
cooperatively trusting accessibility,
because your powers of acquisition
are constrained only by this magic
of mutual gratitude.

Imagine, as you mature in LeftBrain dominance,
the magic of mutual gratitude
and its more paranoid secretive absence,
when you were a child
was simply Left/Right deep learning chemistry.

Imagine how you might have heard,
You can be anything you sufficiently desire to become
as not so much,
You can have whichever magical powers of acquisition you can imagine,
but more like a child,
We are continually becoming whom and what we wish for
within an ecology of mutually trusting chemistry
we call regard, and sometimes wonder, and even awe,
and we are discontinuously becoming whom and what we do not wish for
within a climate of paranoid
overly acquisitive and competitive
LeftBrain dominant pathology;
this lack of RightBrain outflowing,
nurturing,
self-as-also-other regenerating gratitude.

Imagine you live where and when
all you can take in is ours to give
each grateful trusting other.

What happens in your imaginative chemistry
when WinLose games of Keep Away
revolt into WinWin games of Give Away,
but only when productive for
and consumptive of
co-empathic gratitude?

 

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Politics of MultiCultural Trust

“It is the custom of scholars when addressing behavior and culture to speak variously of anthropological explanations, psychological explanations, biological explanations, and other explanations appropriate to the perspectives of individual disciplines. I have argued that there is intrinsically only one class of explanation. It traverses the scales of space, time, and complexity to unite the disparate facts of the disciplines by consilience, the perception of a seamless web of cause and effect.” Edward O. Wilson, Consilience: The unity of knowledge

Political Cause: Yang
EcoNomic/EcoLogical Effect: Yin

Tao of Political-Economic Consilience

How could politics,
studying effective/ineffective power in relationships and transactions,
in communication’s productive/unproductive exchanges,
in communion’s transubstantiations,
be an intelligently humane science
without also growing art-forms of imaginative expression?
evolving culture’s powerful articulations,
how best to constitute, contract, and behave together
toward daily through global social economic justice.

Political effectiveness is about control,
sources and patterns,
rhythms of normative creation
favoring polycultural inclusiveness,
democracy of conjoining powers
to enrich future generations of Earth’s healthy prosperity.

Political relationships,
economic transactions,
ultimately support radically regenerate health trends.

The political evolutions of well-formed and reliably executed democracy
have become Favorite Sons of political scientists,
just as totalitarian monopolies of invested power
have become the scientist’s Straw Man for sociopathology
opposing mature polypathic political-economic powers
to effectively advocate socially therapeutic outcomes.

With this same normative assumption of political health science,
we evolve toward ever more inclusive
and therefore hopeful and healthy emergence
of cooperatively organized empathic trust
between political-economic cultural behaviorists.

The politics of healthy regenerative behaviors
unveil the arts and sciences of empathic trust
as dipolar contrasted to distrustful mutual immunity,
antipathy between individuals,
families,
subcultures,
tribes,
competing histories.

We emerge with a positively deviant cooperative political/economic culture
struggling against older pre-millennial WinLose Gaming assumptions
about this business of not only self-governing
but also WeThePeople governing
throughout an overpopulating Earth,
currently drawing too much energy to sustain a healthy home
for grandkids
and their extended genetic families
in the animal and plant ribonucleic kingdoms.

In Empathy and Democracy Michael E. Morrell critiques
“Agonistic theories…
because they tend to reify conflict to the detriment of possible cooperation and do not adequately theorize why we should expect people to remain [loyal] adversaries rather than become enemies.” (pp. 194-5)

What is this difference between a political adversary and an enemy
if not continued respect for co-empathic possibilities for mutual trust
in more cooperative political outcomes
through a “consilience” of mutual subsidiarity.
We can learn to become grateful for adversaries
to produce a more optimally discerned outcome.
On the other hand,
if we succumb to monocultural supremacist political thinking
as always and everywhere competitive WinLose strategics,
then our political choice of enemies for all “loser” roles and rules
precludes full maturation of a healthy cooperative democracy
for every economic body,
every political mind.

Enemies are those we have labeled as outside our desired co-empathic range
of political/economic opportunity.

Shayla C. Nunnally
uses the language of trust and mistrust and distrust
to mine U.S. racial politics
(Trust in Black America: Race, discrimination, and politics).
Perhaps trust refers to the cognitive syllogism side of empathic feelings,
whether positive or negative,
as absence of trust appears
if and only if absence of empathy.
They co-arise nondually, to borrow from Buddhist Philosophy,
as thoughts have feelings attached,
and feelings manifest in thoughts, language of consciousness.

How might we pursue the art and science of politically empathic trust
given the historical predator v prey brand of slavery,
the hunting and gathering of dark-skinned people
supported by a Winners v Losers evolutionary enculturation history?

Cyrus Ernesto Zirakzadeh
(Social Movements in Politics: A comparative study, expanded edition)
rests political Identity-Formation Theory
“on a simple assumption:
people’s actions are structured by deeply held beliefs.” (p. 240)
Perhaps nondual trust/beliefs with empathic/mutual feelings.

A relatively autonomous “non-elite” popular culture
drives political-economic participants
who become immersed in a movement culture.
A non-elite political-economic subculture
might be expected to also aspire to fulfill itself
as a movement culture,
from non-elite to co-elite,
or,
more radically,
a cooperative co-arising aspiration that thrills
and virally spreads
by co-opting elitist dissenters into active empathic-trust.

“One would see instead social movements as constantly evolving yet transforming—
as they are internally dialectical—and therefore bearing legacies for future generations.” (p. 244)

The cooperative optimization of future generations’ health and safety
is an ancient political-economic externally dialectical agenda,
apparently supported by regenerative ecosystemic evolving processes
across most, if not all,
forms and functions of living political-economic systems
and networks of systems.

In both Eastern and Western wisdom traditions
we find the belief,
and perhaps the feeling as well,
that the political and economic systems of a society
are best judged by how well they govern themselves for those most vulnerable,
including the “non-elites” of this generation
but also children,
our future as global residents of Earth.

A cooperative turn to a level of multicultural and polypathic empathy-trust
seems to inevitably expand our Golden Rule
to explicitly include all life forms living,
not yet living,
and no longer living.

Here lies our cooperative political-economic dual destiny of discernment,
as “elites” actively listen to those speaking of non-elite empathic trust
that we are each predator/prey hybrids of mutual subsidiarity
evolving movements toward consilience of empathic trust
in Earth’s healthy optimization future.

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