“We are not going to be able to operate our Spaceship Earth successfully, nor for much longer, unless we see it as a whole spaceship and our fate as common. It has to be everybody or nobody.”
~ Buckminster Fuller
There isn’t any good reason for me to speak about politics to you. In this great void that we collectively call cyberspace, I struggle enough on a daily basis just to tell my story and share these ideas about ecstatic poetry that I feel are so important. Even then, I’m rarely convinced that my voice is ever really heard. The voices that are getting heard, or so I observe, are the ones that seem to know just what makes our mouths water. They lure us with sex, they tempt our sweet tooths with their scandals, and most of all, especially lately, the loudest voices are screaming about politics and the upcoming U.S. Presidential election. We can’t avoid it, can we? It’s everywhere we look, threatening to blind us with its blinking lights, promising to deafen us with a hundred million futile Facebook debates every time we scroll through a feed…
This just seems to be the way things are right now. And on my end, I’m content to keep speaking and sharing my heart with you no matter who is listening. This blog post is no different.
I also cannot deny how I feel. I’m scared. I’m worried. I think more than anything, though, I’m embarrassed. But here, I’d like to be clear: I’m not embarrassed by the larger-than-life, orange-skinned political figures all over our television screens and social media feeds. They don’t get their power intrinsically; they’re not some unstoppable, otherworldly beasts who spontaneously appeared one day without warning or provocation. No, our politicians and enduring political systems are created, and closer to the point here, are sustained, by us. All of us. We are what embarrasses me. I’m embarrassed by how we’ve been swarming around one another like a stirred hive of angry bees, each of us battling for the specific viewpoint that we’re told that we must cling to for fear of death or ruin. I’m embarrassed by how we’ve been so easily diverted in precisely the ways that those who are in control want us to be, how we’ve blindly and willingly been playing a game that we couldn’t ever possibly win. I’m embarrassed by how quickly we’ve allowed ourselves to be divided, polarized by an intentional scheme played out from the highest level to the lowest: a malevolent mass-media massacre that seeks to rob us of our goodwill and intelligence. And most of all…most of all…I’m befuddled and embarrassed at how so few of us seem to be awake to this fact at all.
At this point, I want to be very clear about something. I’ve come to all of these conclusions because I’ve seen them playing out their dramas in my own life and phenomenological world. I am not exempt from this “beehive mentality.” I do not speak from the position of someone who thinks he’s found some magical way “out of the game.” When I note here that we all seem to be participating in this great collective trap, I say so from my very own intimate perspective. I'm speaking about myself as well.
These sickening questions have been plaguing me for the better part of a year: how much have I, myself, been playing into this game? How awake to it all am I, really? And if I want to work for real good, real peace, what can I do when it all seems so insurmountable?
This is when I decided to come to my art.
Ecstatic poetry – like any other mystical art – has a certain kind of power to help us dig deep into our experience and find its essence, its core. For me personally, I find this process incredibly healing, cathartic, and powerful. I also think that sharing from this place – this more grounded place that exists beyond our triggers, a place that seeks to shine its light on the conditioned reactivity of ego – can be profoundly helpful in social dialogue. And so, with this mission in mind, I went into the cave of my art.
And these two words emerged: “Your Sovereignty.”
It was a seed. An idea like a grain of sand in the mouth of a clam: the more it rolled around inside of me, the more layers of glimmer it seemed to gain.
And then a phrase came: “You weren’t made to fall at the feet of all the gods that we’ve created.” To me, these “gods that we’ve created” seemed to be the opposite of “sovereignty,” and a trap – a hidden, painful trap – that so many of us are falling into. It’s like the master standing on a mountaintop cracking his whip at all the slaves below him: we surrender our sovereignty, all of us, without even realizing that we’re slaves…
And so, over time, this art-object was born. It’s a poem that, naturally, I called “Your Sovereignty.” And yes, no doubt, I wrote it with the current state of our country in mind. But please, friends, don’t mistake this post for something that it’s not. This isn’t a blog about politics or politicians. This isn’t a letter that’s trying to sway you into one viewpoint or another. This isn’t a distraction or a candy-coated seduction, and it isn’t just another shouting voice that's trying to divide you up into small groups so that you might wage war on one another.
No, it’s none of those things. This is a piece of ecstatic poetry. And its purpose is to support you in your journey towards Waking Up. Its goal is to show you your blind spots in hopes of helping you regain your Sight. Its mission is to show you that it’s what you have surrendered that has made this place and these times so desperate and divisive, and to remind you that there is still time to reclaim your power and work hard for true, real, peaceful change.
This is a piece of art, my art, submitted humbly and with full awareness that it arises from only one perspective. Frankly, I believe it’s a perspective that, if taken seriously, could cause some meaningful change in these times of slavery and deceit.
This is “Your Sovereignty.” Please don’t forget it.
these are times that make it seem
like we are living in the twilight
of this world –
when our people spend their lives
exalting all the wrong gods
buying a beggar’s cup of comfort
at the price of their wisdom
isn’t this how all the great tragedies
as night draws neigh
and dark fingers close their grip
on the crumbling walls of our houses,
in our last and final hours as brothers and sisters
let us write a different story together:
one that does not end in chains
there is still time
you weren't made to fall at the feet
of all the gods
that we've created
you were made to become the ruler of your own heart
and for your sovereignty
to spread across these lands
like a sunrise of unclouded might
from your words
and loving deeds
this is the natural state of things
the truth of the life you were born into
and even during dark times
when it it seems that all is lost
there is still time
to find our way
© 2016 Brandon Thompson