Re-Evolution: A Thought Process

By: Maven Cade Leary

A revolution in the social sense is a word that implies a change in a current state, where an established order must be destroyed in order to give way to another.

The distinction between a rebellion, a revolution, and evolution is mostly in the way in which these adaptations attempt to, and thus sometimes succeed in, altering the social construct.

A rebellion is an attempt to stop a current state of affairs, and if successful, will be satisfied that that state of affairs no longer exists.

Such as slavery.

The slave, once liberated, does not attempt to in his turn become master over others. The spirit of rebellion is in this striving to redeem human dignity, a concept that is more felt than properly described, and thus defined, by any scholar or poet.

Thus, many so called rebels, such as opposing factions to political parties, are not rebels, in that they do not simply want to abolish the current political regime, but obviously replace it with something.

A revolution is exactly that, an attempt to overthrown an existing, often stable state of affairs, in order to replace it with another state of affairs that due to some new value (religion, reason, passion, the will to power, empathy?..), is expected to make things better. Better for who is what we are often left wondering.

A revolution wants to erect its own state of affairs and is not satisfied by the dissolution of the state of affairs, as is a rebellion. thus a slave rebels. but a political activist revolts. He is a revolutionary.

An entire book could be written on the manipulation of words by the media in order to justifying atrocities, genocides, and interest-driven intervention or lack-there-of. For this text, let us simply point out that the word revolutionary has been replaced by the words rebel (inefficient and disorganized) and terrorist (violent), as revolutionary has too much general appeal. Even a revolutionary who would seek to use economic, political, or scientific measures as a way of overtaking the current socioeconomic regime would be viewed as a terrorist, as they would be a threat to the currently established order of things.

Evolution on the other hand is a gradual replacement of the current established state, usually accomplished in a way that is greater than, and thus completely includes, the previous states. But it must be noted that evolution can, and sometimes must, lead to a true revolution, where the established state must be completely overthrown.

Consider the scientific revolution and the fact a simple statement like telling people you were pretty sure the earth turned around the sun could get you locked up legally for life. In order for the human being to be able to question himself, and the universe around, it was required for the hold that religion and superstition held over the legal systems to be overthrown and replaced.

The idea that a religious leader could lock up a scientist for saying something not in accord with the bible seems alien to our minds, thanks to people like Galileo, who spent their life in service of the human ideal of growth.

This is the heart of evolution forced into the revolutionary frame of mind, where what is obviously so is vehemently denied by the established order. In a sense, it could be argued that evolution and establishment are natural opposites, but this is not truly the case. This is a result of previous experience and a lesson of history, but not an established fact. This is like saying that money is bad because of the way it is currently being utilized to subjugate and dominate other humans and nature. This is not an intrinsic value of money anymore than resisting evolution is a natural trait of establishment. Just because the two have historically been shown to be opposites, does not mean they are destined to stay that way.

A good example of that is the human being learning to “fly”, something that for so long was perceived as being senseless. In these kinds of cases, where evolution does not clash with an existing system, but rather simply adds something where previously there had been only doubt, progress is seamless and easy to integrate. not fifty years after man had learned to fly, there were thousands of flying machine all over the world.

It is when a new way of thought or action comes up against a system with contradictory perspectives that resistance is created. Resistance rarely ends well, and almost always, there are victors and victims. If there are victims, such as a new theory or medical advance putting people out of work, then in a sense, the evolutionary growth comes at the cost of harm to an individual’s state of mind and/or economic viability.

And here we hit another dense concept, that of the justification of suffering today for a greater benefit tomorrow, something that almost all revolutionaries in history have in common. A sacrifice today would result in a purification and rejuvenation into a better state of things. This is the question posed and answered throughout history, and the saying “the ends justify the means” clearly and simply represents one of the extremes to such an extent that stating the exact opposite is that much easier.

If the means are not justifiable, then neither is the end.

The simple fact is that without the moral compass of God, it is very difficult for humans to pinpoint exactly what they are justifying things in relation too. The reasons to kill or not kill, to accept suffering on our behalf or refuse to hold our silence and our inaction, these we must answer in relation to ourselves, to who we think we are.

This is all good and proper, except that if the self is the ultimate judge, then self-interest is the ultimate master. This will lead to selective value systems which accept and participate in “morally offensive” practices out of the need to survive, and at the same time, affirm parts of their “humanity” when it cost them very little to do so. In this way we find ourselves in today’s society, with a populace educated enough to know better and to take to the streets and the forums for our ideals, but at the same time unwilling to take the plunge as Iceland did and simply change things at the risk of losing our perceived stable equilibrium.

Of course, it is not that simple. As stated, any revolution such as what Iceland did has a great risk of being violent to someone. And the results are in a large degree dependent on the organizational structure of the revolutionaries. In Iceland’s case, it seems to have been a breeze, and maybe if more of us were willing to risk it, we might find freedom at last.

Of course, it is just as likely that things would go wrong and that the hold of the system would be too strong for anything so simple as a political revolution to change anything.

Humanity seems to be under the impression that politics is a separate entity from economics. We all know that politics has its strings pulled by the capitalists, but that is not what I mean. We seem to think that one can exist separated from the other, but nowhere in history has politics been anything other than the ruling class’s way of affirming itself.

In tribes and monarchies, the hierarchies are delineated clearly and marked by physical abundance. The higher up on the food-chain you are, the more stuff and friends and wives you have. this has never changed. When they killed poor king Louis well after the french revolution, they were claiming to take back from God the dominion over mankind, and to give the power back to the mass, as a whole.

And to bring things back together, this is not Marxism, as he had a clear penchant for a specific state of things to come, and an inevitable struggle separating us from there. By Karl Marx’s reasoning, the ends justifies the means, and in a literal sense, as the birth of this new system would bring about a kind of end to history, as things would from then on be just fine, hypothetically forever.

But what is to be gleamed from our emancipation from God is not that each man is in it for himself, but that we are all in it together, and that the human kingdom on earth is our reality, period.

In this context, it must be understood that this is what we have, and forevermore this is what we shall have. This then implies that no amount of suffering, today or tomorrow, can be justified by seeking a specific end of evolution. Such would simply be an attempt at imposing a new establishment.

There will never be an end to history, and all systems built will eventually be replaced. To seek to build an absolute end in the name of an ideal is a fallacy of religious doctrines and should not have been brought so prominently into politics by the philosophers. The concept of democracy and capitalism being two separate and yet mutually dependent systems is another lie perpetrated throughout our medias, and in no sense are the two connected.

The simple fact is that names such as politics and religion and economics all speak of one single thing : who controls how the masses act and thus reaps the greatest benefits, most often obviously at the detriment of others.

To seek a democratic ideal where each is equal in determining the fate of the whole, and pairing it with the law of the jungle mentality that is capitalism is clearly a paradox, and until unity is obtained between politics, scientific growth/evolution, and economics, our world will not find the peace it so clearly requires and desires.

Evolution only becomes a revolution when it is left no other choice, when the growth of the species is put into jeopardy, when common sense is trampled on, and the very dignity that comes with being human is stifled.

The dream then would be to have an establishment firmly based in evolution, in positive growth, in a willingness to question itself and change when it is in the best interest of the moment. Violence and suffering, then, in the final analyses, is not justified by seeking a definite future state, but becomes questionably acceptable only if it leads to an evolutionary growth for humanity in the current moment…