Sunday, November 07, 2004

Turning thirty

Tomorrow at 6:30 am Beirut time, I will be thirty years old.
Yes, thirty years. Wrapping up my third decade is an event I never eagerly anticipated. And I still don't. It does come-forgive me for stating the obvious-in a timely fashion, though.
At a time when a million different thoughts are racing through my mind, while very little is actually being done, I cannot but appreciate a wake up call, one that forces me to shake off the dust of paralysis, and turn deep, largely fruitless thoughts, into a product, the nature of which is not necessarily defined.
The overwhelming majority of my life has been punctuated by thoughts and thought experiments, most of which were fleeting and ephemeral at best. The concretization of any of them was a remarkably uncommon occurence. Maybe were they too ambitious and I was too relunctant and too scared to take them any further, maybe I was merely satisfied with the thought process itself, and its abstract realization in a conjectural universe of my own creation, or maybe I am just another idiot savant, a wannabe genius, a bird on a cloud, a dreamer.
Or even better, maybe everything I have ever thought of is worthless. And maybe I am too.
It is a well-documented fact that most thinkers and scientists have their greatest and most intense revelations in their mid-twenties, when they're at the heights of their intellectual creativity and prolificacy. It saddens me to see that these days seem to have gone past me and that I am still right about where I was when I first started.
It also saddens me that, while sometimes I seem to inhale and exhale poetry, I have merely published a single, meager book that doesn't even come close to all that I have to say.
The same goes for painting. And science. And philosophy. And literature. Nothing.
I can clearly see what the romans did to torture their enemies, attach their arms and legs to two horse carriages going in opposite directions, and watch them as they were atrociously pulled to pieces.
As I am stranded to all these different horses, my entire being is torn apart, while I am unshakably anchored to my starting block.
My only chance is to somehow make all my horses curve their space of motion and move in one common direction, towards a common end point.
The day I find out what this common end point is will be my new birthday, my true birthday, and the first day of my life as I have always envisioned it to be.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Rulers of the modern world

I mentioned in an earlier post how "apolitical" I was, or at least, believed myself to be. In fact, I sadly found out that I am as political as any individual who accepts life within the confines of a family, clan, neighbourhood, city, or nation. Being part of a relatively coherent structure larger than oneself, requires one to be political, or, in other words, as is implied by the greek root of the word, to be a "citizen".
As a political entity, however, my nature is somewhat defined by the role I take on in the structure I belong to. Some people rule, others follow, and a select few are stuck in between, like flags on a mountain top. Those will be too aloof to rule, and too proud to follow, but they will still show everyone around them the colors of their convictions, by beating relentlessly, yet somewhat pointlessly, in the wind.
Yes. I think that's what I am after all. Not one to act, but one to talk and pontificate.
Not an apolitical creature, but a politically analytical one.
And that's exactly what I am going to do right now.
Yesterday, I did not vote, being no more than a legal alien.
But the fact of the matter is that even if I could vote, I probably still wouldn't have.
Why? Because the struggle for power disgusts me.
Because being part of this intrinsically corrupt exercise is worse to me than having a hord of cockroaches finding their way down my throat into my stomach.
Because none of these self-proclaimed heroes and national saviors is there for the sake of the nation or the people. Theirs is an unquenchable thirst for power, a perpetual drive for control, an unrelenting urge to be masters of a multitude of lives other than their own.
Power hypnotizes. It addicts. It destroys.
Power infinitely corrupts.
Power will almost never go to those who are intrinsically altruistic and good. Because those will almost never be strong enough to fight off the rabid hyaenas gathered around for the kill.
In all of history, only a handful were able to do it. Those who gave their lives to their causes and their people, not to rule but to dethrone injustice and tyranny, not to achieve power but to achieve freedom, not to conquer, but to liberate.
To me, there is an intrinsic fallacy in the so-called democratic electoral process. A fallacy that has become insurmountable because of the tremendous populous sizes nations have attained and their universal need to be ruled by just one ruler.
True leaders should never have to proclaim themselves as candidates. Their candidature should be automatically proclaimed by the people. I will choose someone as a candidate because I think they fit the requirements needed to justly govern a nation. Others will choose other candidates, and beyond that point, a candidate chosen by the majority of the people will win.
What happens in the real world, unfortunately, is that "politicians" proclaim their candidacy, politicians who have chosen themselves, and will do their best to convince everyone else to choose them.
I am not sure I am clearly pointing my finger at the problem.
When the politicians choose to run, part of their choice is to achieve power. There is no way around it and no point denying it. No matter how well-intentioned they are, being in power is part of their goal. Hence the corruption. When the "politician" does not submit his candidacy, but the public does it for him, then power ceases to be an end in itself and becomes what it should be, a means to an end, the one and only true end, the people and nothing but the people.
This is why neither Bush nor Kerry- nor any of the modern world's leaders for that matter- are worthy of my vote. Because all of them chose themselves before I or anyone else chose them. Because all of them are hungry for the office, and none of them is eager for the people.
Because they are slaves to themselves and not servants for the people.
This is why I always chose to call myself apolitical. And even now that I sadly accept the alternative, I will always hate modern world politics, and weep while watching the world walking steadily towards its own destruction.