I know nothing of freedom and right, can only experience and encounter the flow and pulse of power through my body and my world. To covet both right and freedom in the presently encountered political context, is to covet an empty and hollow idea, an unreachable and unattainable goal.
Millions of bloated, festering, and rotting corpses fertilize the fetid and putrid fields of “right and freedom”. Across the Earth’s surface a writhing mass of billions more clamor, rally, and fight for more or less rights and freedoms, to be free from this thing or that thing, or to have the right to some unsanctioned activity.
The slave beggar with outstretched hands, prostrate before the cruel and vicious master, weeping for their freedom gets very little, and across the world, the people—whomever they are—get very little, and only in little dribs and drabs. They get only what the master, the lord, the boss is willing to bestow upon them. Only through their resignation, submission, and acquiescence to this authority, may they keep what little table scraps are thrown their way, and what is given, can quickly be taken away if they do not obey according to the will and dictates of their abundant masters.
How can such “right and freedom” be our own? If we only have these allowances at the behest of others power, how could we ever truly call them our own? One would have to be a complete fool to think that we are “free” because some political authority says we are. The rights allowed to me are only a miniscule sliver of what I am capable of—am I to accept this arrangement? To do so would to limit myself, to bind myself to another, to refuse my own power, and to allow myself to be controlled.
To those who refuse resignation, submission, and obedience to any external or higher power—be it any idea, object, or individual—such rights and freedom are nothing but words on paper, a lofty and useless delusion.
Our own right and freedom is something else entirely.
My own freedom or right is not defined or created by any external source, but is instead determined by my own power. I am free to all that is within my power, have the right to all the I have the ability to undertake. I need not wait for the pastors blessing, the politicians law, the judge’s ruling, the bosses order, the owner’s permission for what I have in my power to do. Power understood as such concerns itself not with what you are allowed to do, but with what you are willing and able to do.
I have the power to dance; to sing; to write; to fight; to kill; to plant gardens; to grow trees; to do drugs; to love; to hate; to cry; to laugh; to steal; to resist; to subvert; to hide; to be seen; to consume; to produce; to suffer; to destroy; to create. My choice of action or activity is my own, determined by my momentary power and desire.
This is not to say that I ignore all consequence of my actions and activity or that I actually desire to do everything I just listed. I know very well that many actions and activities are looked down upon and unsanctioned by the powers that be. The truth of the matter is that I am perfectly free to do any of these supposedly unsanctioned things—as long as I have the power to accomplish them and most importantly—get away with them. Of course at times we cannot escape punishment or consequence for our action or activity, and act knowing fully well that we will have some force or power projected upon us for our action.
My power is my inalienable property, as long as I breathe and live, I will always have power in my world, when I cease to be, my power ceases to be. My power changes as I explore and experience my life, and is not a steady and unchanging power, but an ever morphing and shifting flow that changes situationally, contextually, and momentarily as I live my life.
If I am to navigate this complex, chaotic, and dynamic torrent, then I must dive into the raging waters—experience its power. I will swim both with and against its currents.
To understand my own power is to make a study of it in my world—to understand the power of the things that I encounter and experience. How does power react, shift, and change to our own probing and interactions? I know from direct observation and experience that power is present everywhere in my world. Everywhere one looks influence and control are present and acting upon us.
From the food I eat, the people I encounter, the objects I encounter and possess, to the things I read—anything in my world can be observed and studied; analyzed and questioned as a thing of power. Power comes in many shapes and forms; qualities and quantities; capabilities and capacities.
My power is not unlimited, I know very well that I have limits to what I can undertake and accomplish. I could never obtain an “unlimited or pure” freedom to do anything I want because I find myself in a world where limits on my power are everywhere. Sometimes I am strong enough to overcome some of these limits, at other times I find that their power is far too great. Navigating the web or terrain of power that I encounter, is an everyday feat, and what is easily done in one moment, may quickly become impossible in the next.
I can temporarily or situationally associate with other individuals to enhance my power. Such momentary conglomerations of power can be useful to us to obtain the things that we desire, or as a simple vehicle for our amusement and pleasure. We are only limited by our power and ability to find willing partners.
Power is not my end, but merely a means to create myself and fulfill my momentary and situational desires. I do not desire the endless accumulation of power. Throughout my world I find accumulations of power, see and observe them in my terrain. Some have the power to control millions of individuals, others have the capacity to influence and control others through words and media, some objects are incredibly powerful or influential, some symbols or ideas can compel complete and fanatical devotion. To counteract and subvert attempts to influence and control us, we must be able to recognize the myriad forms that such attempts come in.
Our own power is sometimes turned against us, used by others to control us and influence us. One only needs to think of the innumerable moments of our lives that we have lost to the machinations and pressures of the expected social relationships and interactions we frequently encounter. Or we could consider the countless hours that we have spent working for another, having our power and bodies used for someone else’s ends. We can and will be used to fortify and help maintain the dominant power relationships of our worlds.
We are not outside the web of power, but deeply embedded within it.
At some juncture it is impossible to escape the influence of some of the things that we encounter in our worlds. As power is unavoidable, it is therefore impossible to escape the influence of it. Some power relationships that exist in our worlds are so dominant that escape from them seems utterly impossible, but this does not mean that we are powerless to attack them, or should not actively try if we desire too.
There are always paths and possibilities of creation and destruction available to us, as long as we are playful and willful enough to consider and use them.
If we dispel the ghosts of the granted and bestowed “right and freedom”, we see our world quickly open up with a multitude of possibilities and pathways for us to explore and play in. I find myself to possess a wide range of ability and power, of which I have the capacity and will to use.
I can only look at all of the worlds moral, ethical, and legal codes as constraints that I am under no obligation to submit to or follow. These “rights” are tools of control, used to maintain and reproduce the various systems and relationships of power that have dominance and control in my world. I have the power to resist and subvert them if I so desire. I will not allow another to dictate what I am free to do, or have the right to do; I toss both away and realize my own power to be free or to act in my world.
I seek to understand the momentary webs and nodes of power relations that I find myself a part of. Through encounters and experiences with power, I may discover previously unseen ways of creating myself and acting upon my world with my own power.
Submerged in the tempest, but guarded against and aware of the many illusions offered up to me, the paths I may follow multiply and contract—each moment and situation a cascade of playful possibilities.
There is no right or freedom; only power.