“Biden accuses Russia of genocide in Ukraine, Elon Musk is sued by former Twitter shareholders, and police in New York City search for a gunman who attacked people on a subway.” Reuters
Big mistake to get the news in my email…
Everyone wants security. It’s not news. I had to teach Maslow’s Triangle in my classes (part of my Critical Thinking book). Critical thinking is essentially logic, but the foundation of a logical argument is the acknowledgement of — after the recognition of — the obvious. I’m the first one to say the obvious isn’t all that obvious (to me). Any-hoo the base of that triangle is (obviously?) food, clothing, and shelter. NEXT safety. We’ve seen it a lot in the last couple of years, fear of losing our food, clothing and shelter (ie. “normal” life) used to whip people up into a mental place where logic is impossible.
The thing I’ve noticed since 2016 is that people seem to like feeling insecure and scared. I’ve tried to figure that out (from my pinnacle of wisdom here) and I think it’s because fear gives us focus and simplifies our lives. It also seems to drive people to one of Maslow’s OTHER layers which is “belonging.”
The human drive to “belong” to groups formed around the motivation of fear is, well, I don’t think I need to go there. And though Maslow’s triangle (pyramid, hierarchy of needs) is pretty cool, there are good arguments against it, specifically that people can transcend their “place” in the hierarchy through inspiration, compassion, urgency. I have a decent intellectual understanding of the top layer — self-actualization — but I’ve always wondered who we are if we are NOT ourselves? Wouldn’t the self propel anyone through life in one way or another, subject to external factors?
As for the war in Ukraine. It’s going to go on a long, long, long time. It’s made me think of diplomatic defense alliances. Zelensky wanted to be part of NATO. NATO was, “Uh, dude, that’s like a commitment to a world war. We don’t want that.” The situation resembles (to me) the mother moose who lets her young calf drown in a flooding river because saving him would mean the loss of her life. In this situation, the baby moose has to sink or swim on its own. Our “human” hearts and human values are horrified by this; in a way, we cannot even think about it. This puts us in a double-bind situation. Yes, the mother should live. No, the calf shouldn’t die. HFS!!!
“For too long man has burdened other animals with the aspirations and idealizations of his own society. Only by discarding all myths can he hope to understand himself.” George Schaller, Stones of Silence
This is an important point, I think. We forget (Maslow hasn’t) we’re animals, too.
Putin wants two Ukrainian states. He’s been trying for almost 10 years (or longer!). The question seems to be should Ukraine sacrifice its calves (the two states in question) for the sake of peace or should the world sacrifice its calf (Ukraine) for the sake of peace. I think Ukraine should let the calves drown, let everyone come home, start rebuilding itself. I’d far rather see all the money going for weapons going for rebuilding bombed houses and cities but I am sure I don’t understand the situation completely.
In other news, I would be very grateful if anyone who’s bought the little poetry book could leave a review. I’m not sure about the quality of the poetry (it’s uneven) but wow. The book came out beautifully! Here’s a link where you can leave a review. Shit, Fear, and Beauty