The Lion of Jesse was a Progressive!
Thank you Art for your gift of Janovian Primal Therapy,
Some of us are very unreal out here but even so, we pick up when someone cares, and when they endorse caring.
You mentioned the time and I would add cost that it takes to create a good therapist, even though they may be a caring person. That being the case it leaves those of us who are in poverty and struggling just to eat and keep a roof over our heads in a pretty difficult situation.
I live in this capitalist country where not only do they advise not to pick up a child but they see health care as something to be limited and denied whenever possible. That’s like waiting until a child is not only crying but in an absolute fit and then discussing whether the child is genuinely in need now, and just how much time should be given in the process.
Many of us who are poor die in emergency rooms here, and not because our country just can’t “afford it”, because France, a poorer country, and England, also a poorer country, seem to been able to afford caring for the poor in a reasonable manner.
My back is injured and though I can walk for a bit, eventually the pain gets worse and worse until I can’t walk, and sometimes I have fallen down. This injury occurred on the job so it is hotly debated whether to give me the laser surgery that might possibly allow me to go to work on the trucking docks driving a fork lift as I once used to do. Yet, I having been in this condition now for 2 years plus, and although I have won all my court battles the Republicans and “blue dog Democrats” have put laws in place that mean help for me can be disputed forever, until homelessness, in which case even a lawyer can’t help, or until a Republican judge, or a conservative Democrat, rules against me. When a worker is hurt they are treated as a criminal, and there is no double jeopardy, your case is tried and tried again forever, or until those who don’t want to help you finally win….
Let us picture a child crying, the child cries, she is hungry. but until her hunger is starvation she isn’t a necessary expense, and when starvation sets in, then, “gosh” its just too late, there are “others” who might more easily be saved. Arguments for not caring, and for not caring for children crying in a far off land, or even for refusing care to children right here at home, always has it’s excuses, and the same applies for workers injured at work.
Now I find myself unable to afford anything I need medically, and all my adult life I have desired to have primal therapy, which would have prevented the extremely high blood pressure that I have now. We don’t even invest in preventative medicine.
Yes, Art, your clinic at any given time might have been willing to help me and many others, and you might have done a lot to bring down health care costs, but your clinics can’t operate on air and this unreal healthcare system here in the U.S.A., bent on denying care to anyone for any excuse that can be given, will not fund them.
Finally, those of us too poor for college, too poor for even basic health care needs, too poor to deserve “fixing”, turn to each other for whatever comfort we can achieve. We are wounded, we have what you call primal pain, and some of us have common delusions that afford some comforting relief. Such as “One your number is up, your number is up. Only God decides when you die, and I go to Church regularly.” Those greedy few at the top of our society are very pleased that they think that way. However, there are those like myself. I think, and I know the false comforts for what they are, and I know what is happening to even the middle class, let alone the desperate poor, and like one of a herd of cattle who has looked and seen that we are being either used or slaughtered, I look sadly on this world and it’s needless greed.
Yet, because I understand that everyone is sick, I am sad even for those doing the slaughter, because they have lost their hearts and humanity to greed and so they too are losing their lives.
Now I ponder that my awareness of all this drives up my blood pressure, but running around with a vacuous smile and a numbed heart just isn’t my style.
I might should state that greed is not evil, It may be the source of a lot of it, but it is not evil. It is what happens when only symbols of what we once desperately needed are sought out as if they were life. This is what your therapy teaches us very plainly. So what can we do about this? We need a primal revolution.
I have no greed, at least in terms of craving money or fame, I have studied religions and worked without social security payments being made for various groups around the country, and my reward will be insufficient social security benefits in my old age.
When I was young I sought some place where I could believe enough in something that comforted me enough so I could find a place to belong, a home.
I found no home. Every place I went was caught up in the same sick self centered soup, just with various rationalizations and smiles pasted on top.
Now I have decided, here in my late fifties, that I will try to “create a home” for those like myself where we might find some relief in this misery, and perhaps find a means for all of us to survive in our revolutionary new philosophical home, a spiritual home, all about communication between perspectives that help us love and those express our trust. I call this movement, “optimistic intelligence”.
Meanwhile I search for jobs, and at my age, I find only ones that I will not be able to work long hours at, and I smile and hand them a resume with 2 plus years missing. The time when I fought for real help but never got it.
Remember, I am not so unthoughtful as to not see that soon I may be in the street, another great success of the art of denial on the part of a very greedy nation. I cannot be silent on my way to such an end. I must be a voice for the primal revolution, and for what degree of optimism we can achieve with the intelligence of love.
I seek to offer the comfort you spoke of in your letter here. Yet how do you get “paid” for that? Then too, I must say to them, this is only comfort, and must say to those more fortunate, “there is a better answer for you in California”. So, Art, what we really need is a health care system that cares and also supplies the preventive treatments that you provide.
One last tear for everyone, while I find myself sinking into this death, a death supplied by stealthy powerful con artists pushing the gospel of greed. Now I can pray that I don’t go insane from observing all this faith in greed masquerading as wisdom, or come to endorse violence, and that I can give one brave and final wave to a world that never listened well, and pass into the non existence from which I came.
There are those who think we live forever, but then what comfort is that? Reincarnation without remembering anything from your past is the same as having died. We aren’t even the same baby we once were so where is the immortality? Then some want to live forever in a place of eternal bliss while others live in agony, their screams reaching to your heavenly abode. I think that sounds a bit like what we have in capitalism, and other systems that allow all the power into a few hands: The greedy at the top fearful of losing their wealth, and the suffering at the bottom hoping one day to rise to that fake heaven, where they too can fail to pay a fair share of taxes, and sit around at expensive restaurants and go to religious meetings for a bit of insurance, while denying health insurance for the poor.
Certainly the Jewish understanding of the sadness of this world, and its many brave humorists over the years, have spoken much of what I have said here, and I have to say that for the poor “humor” may not be the best medicine there is, but it may be the best medicine available. So, Art, you were born in a culture that definitely understood the situation, that may be where some of your insights into life have come from, and why you now have searched the answer for much of the suffering in this world. I believe you have found a great form of help if only others would listen.
I wish I was a humorist. Meanwhile I can tell myself not to “wallow in the pain”, to smile when the world is a sad joke, to let my courage keep the desire to live and enjoy life, alive in my children. Today I give myself a military cheer and muster my courage as I fight for the only thing left in what is probably a hopeless battle, the artistic appreciation of the glory of never giving up, of making the last parts of the music of my life poignantly alive and beautiful.
Art, you have given many of us hope for a better world, and I can only hope that the world becomes rational enough to take that hope and make it a reality for many more people.
Meanwhile those of us in the trenches are speaking reason, and love, and creative openness to any hearts that might still be listening.
Let hope shine in the darkness, and in the hearts of every suffering soul, until we can say “free at last, free at last, thank God almighty, free at last.”
Rev. David Mitchel Stow