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Friday, March 16, 2012

A Love Supreme

A Love Supreme

By Dr. Cornel West
Occupied Media.us
March 16, 2012

We the people of the global Occupy movement embody and enact
a deep democratic awakening with genuine joy and fierce
determination.

Our movement — leaderless and leaderful — is a soulful expression of a moral outrage at the ugly corporate greed that pushes our society and world to the brink of catastrophe.

We are aware that our actions have inaugurated a radical
enlightenment in a moment of undeniable distrust and disgust
with oligarchic economies, corrupt politicians, arbitrary rule
of law and corporate media weapons of mass distraction.

And we intend to sustain our momentum by nurturing our bonds of
trust, fortifying our bodies, hearts and minds and sticking together
through hell or high water in order to create a better world through
a deep democratic revolution.

We refuse to be mere echoes of the vicious lies that support an
illegitimate status quo.

Our deep democratic awakening takes the form of we everyday
people raising our individual and collective voices to tell the painful
truths about unjust systems and unfair structures that yield
unnecessary social misery.

The past thirty years of a top-down, one-sided class war on precious
poor and working people — with the greatest transfer of wealth
from bottom to top in human history — have taught us that we
either fight together in the name of truth and justice or we lose
our livelihoods and sacred honor.

In this sense, the movement is already victorious: our organizing
and mobilizing have shifted public discourses toward truth and
justice — towards a focus on corporate greed, wealth inequality,
escalating poverty, obscene levels of unemployment, the role of
big money in politics, and abusive military and police power.

But we have work ahead of us yet.

The full-scale bankruptcy of the neoliberal order — of deregulated
markets, unaccountable oligarchs, bribed politicians — is now an
established fact of life and history.

Its age is coming to an end.

Our deep democratic enlightenment must break us out of our
narrow intellectual frameworks and our parochial cultural
habitus.

Like the inventors of jazz, we must be open-minded, flexible, fluid,
inclusive, transparent, courageous, self-critical, compassionate and
visionary.

We must recast old notions of empire, class, race, gender, religion,
sexual orientation and nature into new ways of thinking and being.

Our movement is a precious, sublime, messy and funky form of
incubation.

Again like jazz, we must embody and enact a loving embrace of
the art of our collaborative creations.

We must embody a universal embrace of all those in the human
family, and sentient beings, and consolidate an unstoppable
fortitude in the face of systems of oppression and structures
of domination.

We will suffer, shudder and struggle together with smiles on our
faces and a love supreme in our souls.

Just as justice is what love looks like in public and tenderness is
what love feels like in private, deep democratic revolution is what
justice looks like in practice.

Revolution may scare some people because of its connotation of
violence.

And this is understandable in light of many past revolutions, such
as the American revolutions against monarchy in 1776 or against
slavery in 1861.

But the revolution in our time — against oligarchy and plutocracy — 
need not be an ugly and violent one.

The rich legacies of Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela, and
recent revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, have taught us that we
can deal with our social catastrophes with social compassion and
that we can transform unjust societies with courageous visions
and nonviolent strategies.

If we equip ourselves with truthful systemic analyses of power in
our minds, moral commitments of steel in our backs and a genuine
joy in serving others in our hearts, then our dream of a nascent
justice spread across the globe may be no mere illusion.

We are prisoners of a blood-stained, tear-soaked hope.

This means we are free to imagine and create a more deeply
democratic world than we have yet witnessed in history.


Dr. Cornel West is a prominent and provocative democratic
intellectual. He is the Class of 1943 University Professor at
Princeton University and he has taught at Union Theological
Seminary, Yale, Harvard and the University of Paris. He has
written 19 books and edited 13 books and he is best known
for his classic Race Matters, Democracy Matters, and his new
memoir, Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud.

http://occupiedmedia.us/2011/11/a-love-supreme/

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