Monday, November 14, 2011
“Let the dead bury the dead,” Jesus Christ says in the New Testament. So, there, you see: Jesus DOES believe in zombies!
In fact, we are surrounded by zombies. That’s what the craze in zombie movies is trying to tell us. The living dead are all around us. But who, where, how?
Seven billion people now share this earth, we are told. Most people sleep walk, going about their daily tasks with minds preoccupied with petty details, thoughts of the past, daydreams, anxieties, fears, being in love and all the thoughts and mechanical actions we are prone to.
Though we are awake (relative to our sleep state at night) during day, we are only relatively conscious. Think of some stereotype: I think of the proverbial “red-neck” personality. I can’t possibly define the term but let me say that someone who is a white racist, uneducated, uncouth in personal habits, uncreative, and living more or less just a tad above the level of an animal. Perhaps such a one never has an abstract thought in his life. If there is a such a person, and popular stereotypes suggest we are invested in their being a reality, surely this would be an example of a zombie living amongst us. Unreflective, lacking in self-awareness, humorless (unless at the expense of others), cruel and pig-like in personal habits.
This description, I grant you, is a bit extreme. But even mild-mannered people can live day to day, moment to moment, with very little self-awareness, even if they offend no one. Think of how much time is spent gossiping, judging, decrying this or that piece of news, shopping aimlessly, almost hypnotically, roaming the internet, Face book, reading trashy novels, playing video games, watching television, cartoon, soaps, reality shows and on and on and on.
So, yes, you see what I mean: the world IS filled with zombies! This is how an entire nation of otherwise good or at least so-called “normal” people, can embrace or accept the misdeeds of their leaders, even on a grand scale such as Nazi Germany, Rwanda, and countless other examples. This would include the grand misdeeds of large corporations.
The consciousness of our planet is like a silk worm struggling to break out of its cocoon to become a butterfly and fly away. Millions have awakened to feel a connection with the global reality in which we live. They have awakened with sympathy and understanding and harboring hope for a better world. They desire an end to war, plagues, injustice and exploitation.
Whether their hopes are justified or will ever be realized isn’t even my real point. It’s the consciousness that such a hope and desire even exists that is revolutionary. We really do have in front of us a war with the zombies. But even zombies have leaders, intellectuals, and captains and lieutenants whose embrace of their fear and greed based tribalism is creative, willful, even courageous, and, in its own way, conscious.
Thus, as it must needs be to keep this world going round, good and evil vie forever for the upper hand. It’s not a new war but takes new forms in every generation and in every age. In our age we could call it tribalism versus universality. It is the conflict between the seeming differences in outer appearance versus the recognition of an underlying unity.
In a dynamic and conscious way, it began with the American revolution and the Age of Enlightenment. At this time, the concept of being an individual began the cultural breakdown of self-identity that was tribal (national, etc.). As the generations moved along we’ve had struggles for racial and gender equality, religious freedom, economic freedom and so many other similar struggles. The famous post-World War II Nuremburg trials highlighted the issue of personal responsibility for one’s actions and the moral limits of authority and obedience.
This war of the zombies could also be described as a conflict between competition and cooperation; domination and equality; conquest and harmony.
It is important that we have realistic goals in life, lest we fail and consequently fall into disillusionment or bitterness. From the macrocosmic view of the God’s eye, it is wise to understand that these battles never end but are necessarily relative victories and relative defeats. But not to struggle to wake up from being a zombie is the duty imposed or offered to us by our own higher awareness.
On a microcosmic level we struggle day to day from falling into subconscious or addictive habits whose enticement and pleasure is but short-lived and, long-term, ultimately destructive of our health and happiness. That piece of cake invites another. That doughnut invites repeating; that cigarette invites a pack or a carton. Gossip attracts more gossip. And so on.
The war of the zombies is, therefore, more real than we might know. Rather than “fight” anyone, however, the secret is to wake ourselves up. The more awake and strong we are in the realization that we are part of a greater reality, the better and more lasting an effect we have on the zombie within us and the zombies around us. You can never kill them all, don’t you see? We need only to avoid being one ourselves. That’s the drama of this play we call life.