American Corruption and the Paradigm of Separation
I’ve always loved the word paradigm. It’s one of those words whose mere existence elicits a deeper understanding of the world and it’s inhabitants.
par•a•digm (părˈə-dīmˌ, -dĭmˌ)►
One that serves as a pattern or model.
A set or list of all the inflectional forms of a word or of one of its grammatical categories: the paradigm of an irregular verb.
A set of assumptions, concepts, values, and practices that constitutes a way of viewing reality for the community that shares them, especially in an intellectual discipline.
That last definition is the one I would like to focus on. I want to dissect this definition and get to the deeper and more insidious ways in which the American Paradigm of Blame allows corruption to fester and expand.
In America we are riddled with divisive and hateful rhetoric, overrun with ideologies that rely on sets of beliefs that can neither be proven nor disproven, and let’s not forget the arrogant stance of many whom believe their perspective to be the most valid and therefore righteous.
You might think I am talking about a specific group right now. Maybe you feel that my prior statements suite the religious zealot or the politically extreme. But the truth is that I am talking about people from all walks of life and of every discipline, including myself to a degree. The human mind and our emotional drives create in each of us the same potential to be led astray, to be seduced by the half-truths and whole lies. We are all equally susceptible to the impassioned rhetoric that fans the flames of emotion.
A Paradigm is a set of assumptions, concepts, values, and practices that constitutes a way of viewing reality for the community that shares them, especially in an intellectual discipline. This is, in a nutshell, the worldview we adopt and it dictates our ability or inability to see things as they are.
In America we are bombarded with news stories and ideologies that are divisive. They bring to light and focus on the differences between us. We are separated. It becomes about us verses them. We separate ourselves into increasingly more numerous categories; black and white, native or foreigner, man and woman, adult and child, democrat or republican, patriot or traitor, soldier and terrorist, and the list goes on. Our worldview is formed in this paradigm of separation, which is essentially a paradigm of division that leads to blame.
When we see others as the enemy and cast blame rather than coming to understand their actions we are forfeiting any true investigation into the state of affairs and how they came to be. Instead of doing the hard work necessary in obtaining true understanding we just point our fingers, and like a sorcerer we cast out our accountability and fault into those whom we deem ‘others’. In our fantasy we believe that once the others are gone so to will our difficulties and problems vanish.
The paradigm of many Americans carries within it this seed of division and it sprouts into hatred and blame at the expense of the truth. The false notion that the resultant state of affairs domestically and abroad is the fault of one group is disallowing us to reach the truth. We are all collectively shaping and shifting this world, and the direction it goes is the responsibility of every individual.
Unless every American accepts their own individual responsibility and becomes accountable we will never see real and lasting change. Every time we subscribe to a paradigm of individualism rather than collectivism, of separateness rather than togetherness, we are fueling the engines of division, of blame, and of war.
We all need to take a long hard look in the mirror and identify which aspects of our identity are divisive rather than inclusive. What do you see in the mirror? If you see a Republican you’ve been cut off from the whole. If you see a Democrat you have been cut off. We need to recognize and see ourselves and each other for what we truly are in order to shatter this paradigm that distracts us from seeing the actual causal factors in our lives and in our culture. We are human beings. We are all the same. We’ve only been led to believe otherwise in order to keep us from turning our attention to the real problems.
America was once considered a ‘melting pot’. She was a home to any and all seeking a better life or refuge. How has our collective paradigm shifted so far from where we began? How has the news become nothing more than the propaganda arm of their moneyed interests? How has the political system become so rigged as to allow the few with the most to control the rest?
The answer is simple. It has been rigged slowly and with little resistance. As those in positions of power where shifting things in place the American masses where arguing over race, the Kardashians, and sports. This has only been possible specifically because of this paradigm of separation that permeates our society.
If we do not shift our focus away from the infinite number of perceived differences being spouted by harbingers of separation and start focusing on our similarities and seeking true understanding we will fall as a Nation.
As usual thanks for stopping by!