“The faith in the future of the human is rooted in an understanding of the direction of history that began with our hominid ancestors.” (Silo, Letter to my friends p.45, 1995)
“..the different historical actors from the Neolithic era appeared which also allowed for writing, the domestication of animals and plants and the first urban settlements in the Indus Valley, China, Mesopotamia and Eastern Mediterranean (including the civilizations of Crete, Anatolia, Egypt and North Africa). All of this came to life thanks to the most basic technology of the oven (and of course the conservation and production of fire) and the matriarchal social structure.” (Karen Rohn, Energetical Roots of Fundamental Experience South India)
“If evolution depends on the free energy in a species and the health of its environment we are more or less detained in our evolution and things are complicated. All of us are detained, not just the unfavored half, because we all relate and live together. The deep changes that discrimination creates changes all the relations because as a species we are one structure. Can we imagine another species where half of the population is considered as “less,” how would we consider the possibilities of this situation? We have forgotten that the rules of the game are that we are One species, with one tendency, one mold and one direction. Our basic human tendency is that of community, of an innate inclination to make things better, to be caring.” (Karen Rohn, Energetical Roots of Fundamental Experience South India)
These mental and social virtues were part of the sensibility and direction of a collective lifestyle for all members of a tribe or community with its shared experiences, ideals, attitudes and procedures and here our essential tendency was determined, it was not divided has male and female, it was part of a whole, a species called human being.
Our collective situation changed and today we live within a more or less global landscape where the feminine has lost value and is considered as less than the masculine. In the last era, the sacred feminine which was previously undoubted, slowly became denied and eliminated as a presence in our landscape. The rupture in our shared collective tendency weakens and halts the evolution of our species.
Imagine one day if we visit another planet and meet a species that would have denied half of their potential, and denied diversity of human we would probably think “that’s crazy” and would say “this condition is totally unacceptable”. We would probably explain to them that this condition has enormous consequences in their evolution and reduce their future and full potential as a species.
Today if it seems, the only way we can evolve would be together as a species. Together acknowledge our tendency about the “we,” about caring for others and paying attention to others, caring for the environment, caring for our planet. Because if we go on dividing ourselves, dividing nature, dividing countries, dividing families and dividing our life, signs are within us and all around us demonstrating that we are moving down the wrong track.
According to Rohn, to be in contact with the whole potential of our tendency and species needs to live and move on common ground. Silo, refers to this interesting metaphor in “Universal Roots Myths” the human beings, as a whole, as a species, have the equipment to fly very far.
But in these moments of great acceleration and changes what should we do? I believe we can only be guided by what’s right for ourselves and for others, “to take care of others” which is the basic attitude of active nonviolence. But obviously, to do the right thing it’s not enough to change the direction of the events.
Social change and Active Nonviolence
I believe we need to prepare ourselves by setting the proper conditions at the level of our species for a change in the human mental and psychosocial structure. This kind of change would be linked to an experience of reconciliation with our species. We still have this tendency from within it’s a “seed dormancy process”. The potential of this tendency can grow rapidly in the world if proper conditions are set in motion.
Because we live in a moment of planetarization, I believe that Active Nonviolence as a strategic methodology based on well-timed action and can produce change in the direction of our life and in society.
Active Nonviolence too timid to generate conditions for social change?
Over the years I participated in Active Nonviolence projects I encountered many people that were saying “but Active Nonviolence is too timid to generate conditions for social change, you are losing your time launching projects on Active Nonviolence and new humanism.”
Then I realize they didn’t make any difference between the timid, who retreat or become paralyzed when faced with any difficulty, and those who take action to surmount the difficulties, knowing that it is precisely by advancing that they will be able to get through the problems.
For several decades I practiced Active Nonviolence. I launched several projects with friends in Canada and friends in Europe. In Montreal we launched a neighborhood newspaper called “Visions Voisins”. The newspaper was published every month by humanist and nonviolent volunteers for more than 10 years.
After the attacks on September 11, 2001, we organized several demonstrations to denounce war as a solution to stop terrorist attacks. Subsequently, I started an international nonviolence education program with humanist friends in England. I organize several training in Haiti, Morocco, Kenya.
In 2011, after the first World March for Peace and Nonviolence, I launched another Active Nonviolence program for the new generations. “Run This Way” school program which is promoting active nonviolence. More than 20,000 students across Quebec, France, Ireland participated in the program over 4 years.
Currently, I am working as a volunteer on new media projects related to nonviolence with the Pressenza News Agency. Pressenza is an active resources for activists and journalists across the world.
Many times through my experiences I advanced with a new project, sometimes I had to let go a project because, if I would go forward it could generate problems beyond my strength. The problem I was facing was so large that I had to retreat, however, I knew that the dynamic, and the relationship of forces would change, either because the influence of nonviolence grows or because the problem’s influence weakens.
Today I see changes in the dynamic, and the relationship of forces. I believe it’s time to disarm with Active Nonviolence the system that generated violence, discrimination and racism. I see this project as an aspirations for our species. Maybe it’s time to reconcile with our tendency of “caring for others” which was fundamental for the first human community survival.
“This species, which has worked and struggled over the course of millions of years to surmount pain and suffering, is not now going to yield to the absurd. This is why we need to understand processes that are more ample than simple immediate circumstances, and to support, even if we do not see immediate results, everything that goes in the direction of evolution.” (Silo, Letter to my friends p.45, 1995)