The social strain

Just returned from my trip to Berlin…

The visit to the Jüdisch Museum created a lot of questions in my mind about the social orders and intermixing of these orders aka the immigrations and settlements or assimilation of these immigrants into the new order of an alien society. After, being instrumental in the hanging of the heretic named Jesus, the Jews probably thought the things were settled and the code laid down by Moses and the instructions of YHWH were now safe for posterity. Nothing bad will happen and everything was within control; and yet. The Christians were persecuted and put in from of the hungry lions in the arena for public pleasure and pastimes.

For centuries to come, after the installation of Christianity as proper religion with the book complied as The New Testament, the ages old feeling of vengeance slowly superseded the Christian values of forgiveness. In any case, unknown to the Abrahmic religions, the law of Karma shall work and things come back as they were put into action. The middle ages saw the aggravation of this conflict in Europe and later during the Elizabethian era, one could see that Shakespeare painted Shylock, in The Merchant of Venice, as a principal antagonist who looses eventually at the hand of “good” Christians.  Jews were not allowed to settle in England until the seventeenth century under the rule of Oliver Cromwell. In the 16th and early 17th centuries, Jews were usually depicted as avaricious usurers and  were often characterized as evil, deceptive, and greedy. Shakespeare ends his play with Shylock’s forced conversion to Christianity and portrays it as a redemption of  Shylock from his unbelief and for his lack of religious grace to comprehend mercy.

After the middle ages, in the city of Venice and in other places, Jews were required to wear a red hat at all times in public to ensure that they were easily identified. If they did not comply with this rule, they could face the death penalty. In Venice Jews had to live in a ghetto protected by Christians, probably for their own safety. The Jews were expected to pay their guards; and this almost reeks of the Jiziya tax that Islam levies on the non-Muslims living in the lands under their control. Then come the time of the Nazi occupation of the European lands and their vicious propaganda against the evil and devious Jews who were responsible for all that bad in the society and economy. They were the usurpers of wealth at sat on it like the snakes while the rest of the “good” Christian population suffered.

The same “good” Christians who were colonizing the rest of the world in order to fulfill the self-proclaimed ‘White Man’s burden‘ i.e. bring the rest of savage dark skinned human race to the level of civilization, ordained to be so, by their white overlords. The same “good” Christians who would write outside certain buildings “Indians and dogs not allowed”. The same “good” Christians who killed the native Americans to extinction and burned them in pits because their skin color reminded them of their mythological bad boy – the Satan. The same “good” Christians who would trade the black population from Africa and treat them as animals working on their farms, just because they were really dark skinned and looked like primates. The same “good” Christians who looted and plundered the colonies they controlled with ruthless authority. An African politician once remarked about the history of colonial oppression as – “When they arrived, we had the lands and they had the Bible. After a few years, we had the Bible and they had the lands.” Do we really hide our intentions behind the nice sounding words and act in a sinister manner to fulfill our desire of greed and gluttony? Maybe so.

The notion of order, in its very broad social sense, must encompass the wide gamut of concepts, ideas, customs, value system and the historical continuity of some tradition/s. It takes a long time for a certain society to develop its own specific value system and what is called tradition and a characteristic sense of order. The order which is reflected in the society is a collective outcome of interaction of many minds and their surroundings. There are subtle and specific strains of thought that are reflected in the mirror of time when examined closely. By a thorough examination of an order of society, one could gain knowledge of the systematic order that is pervasive in the consciousness of the people that make up the particular society. The change when induced in the society creates a disturbance in that order. The collective mind sees it as a disturbance of its exclusive zone of existence. The immigrant also feels strained due to a sudden change in his/her lifestyle. Its a matter of time before this strain creates the fault lines and pressure zones in society. This eventually leads to the same kind of idiocies that human societies have indulged themselves over and over again. It seems that our superficial understandings of human rights give away to our basal animal instincts of territorial rights. We easily succumb to protectionism when it comes to a foreign entity intruding our space.

Isn’t it strange that the same people who changed the societies world over are now scared of the same change that nature enforces upon them? We must understand, that we may be able to change the things around us because of our brains, but at the end of every effort, we are still subject to extermination at the hands of the universe. We cannot escape the Universe. We are its creation. Only a patient self – reflection and a deep understanding will reveal a unifying thread that binds us all. The whites, the blacks, the browns, the reds and the yellows are just superficial differences of pigments. If one cannot respect life in all forms then the talk of God or heavens and other stuff is just a nice talk that hides a deep set hypocrisy and nothing else.

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