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Everything Between Heaven and Earth and Beyond

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The Enemy is One – and It Is Not Us

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on April 6, 2018


Patriarchy
patriarchy. you know, that all-overshadowing social and political system that wants nothing else but keep us occupied with internal squabbles so we are kept unaware of how it is stealing our lives and our power.
patriarchy is the biggest and most violent equal opportunist monster there is. patriarchy has no gender, no race, no religion, no sexuality, no class, no ethnicity, it never did and it never will. patriarchy is gender-less and impersonal, colorless and indifferent.
as long as we keep ‘comparing notes’ on who is the most disadvantaged, abused and raped, who is the most victimized and vilified, patriarchy has won.
the Enemy is only one and E is winning while we fight each other. for me there has ever only been one enemy.
that one enemy has  managed to deceive us into believing that there are all those ranks, hierarchies and social structures that are trying to butt in on our specific turf or excluding us from some other turf, depriving us of our rights and our equality.
this is a lie. if we constantly assign power to others based on their  gender, race, religion, sexuality, class, ethnicity or (dis)ability, while claiming ourselves powerless, everyone of us will end up being powerless. that is what patriarchy wants.
i cannot convince someone to join me by alienating them with demands of special victim-hood status, i cannot convince people not yet aware/awake to wake up by yelling at them that they are stupid sheeple. i cannot make an ally out of someone i approach with contempt because of their gender, race, religion, sexuality, class, ethnicity or (dis)ability.
yes, we may disagree about the details, the interconnected issues and what not – but if we start attacking each other and judge each other as ‘not worthy’, we are playing right into patriarchy’s hands, and all we accomplish is a whole lot of hurt and loneliness, while patriarchy keeps on eating our hearts and souls.
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They aren’t for Life, they are for fetuses and themselves.

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on April 1, 2018


I do not often agree with Xians. But I do agree with John Pavlovitz. On many things. But this stood out this morning: The Fraudulence of ‘Pro-life, Christians’ Bullies

It is true what he says:

“If only these teenagers had stayed there in the womb: they’d be safe from the pro-life Christians.
There, they’d still be beautiful. There, they’d still be worth defending. There’ they’d still be sacred.”

The entire blog-post is so spot on I am speechless – and happy – finally a Xian who stands up to those bullies, those life-hating, war-mongering, gun-worshiping and fraudulent Xians, whose only positive concern is for those who agree with them.

Some of you know that I was once an evangelical Xian, albeit in Sweden and during the late 70’s, 80’s and early 90s, but I was just like those Evangelical Xians John speaks of. Fundamentalist, arrogant, life-hating and aggressive towards those who did not agree with me.

Given my personal experiences – which I will share about elsewhere – I think I can say with certainty that out-side a cataclysmic, personal and profound life-crisis, nothing will get through to the majority of them.

Why? Because at the core of their belief lies FEAR. However much they profess to be absolutely certain that G-d loves them, they do not really believe that. They believe that any little step, even in thought, out-side the narrow version of Xianism they are given by their pastors, will end them in hell with the rest of us.

They don’t trust G-d to be kind, gentle, forgiving, compassionate and present, much because they have split G-d in three. G-d the Father, whom they equate with a distorted understanding of the G-d of Israel – angry, hateful, vengeful and quick to anger and punishment; G-d the Son, whom they see as their Suffering Savior, constantly, desperately averting the impending doom and Wrath of G-d, and G-d the Spirit, whom they are taught is so fickle and sensitive, that just a mispoken word can rip said spirit out of their lives permanently. No wonder they have to be aggressive, fundamentalist, hateful and self-serving. They have no safety in G-d.

So all we, or rather Xians like John Pavlovitz, can do is try and catch the ones like me and give them a community that is not, 1. Fundamentalist, 2. Arrogant and 3. Self-serving.

I hope John gets through to some of them.

Posted in Evangelical Christians, Evangelical Xians, John Pavlovitz, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

how NTs dominate the ND narrative

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on March 28, 2018


the text below was adapted from this article. i have switched out ‘cis’ for ‘neurotypical’ and ‘trans’ for ‘neurodifferent’. the original article was written by Cristan Williams.

angry-bear5there are, by orders of magnitude, more neurotypical people than neurodifferent people in the world. when one considers the amount of discourse happening around the neurodifferent experience, due to sheer numbers, a neurotypical understanding of “neurodifferent issues” is dominant in our society today. this dynamic ensures that the dominant “neurodifferent” narrative is also a false narrative that is repeated, analyzed, and criticized ad nauseum by a largely neurotypical audience, reinforcing the validity of this dominant (and factually inaccurate) “neurodifferent” narrative. when neurodifferent people protest the propagation of the dominant (and factually inaccurate) “neurodifferent” narrative about the neurodifferent experience, neurodifferent people are told that we are stifling free speech, that we are snowflakes, or that we just need to learn to perform better public “debates.” when neurodifferent activists express anger, resentment, and/or frustration with this dynamic, neurotypical people can respond with their own anger, resentment, and/or frustration because a lot of neurotypical people have already invested more time and attention into trying to understand the dominant (and factually inaccurate) “neurodifferent” narrative than they ever wanted to in the first place and come to perceive neurodifferent activists as pushy, bossy, and unreasonable.
resolving these misunderstandings in the face of an army of trolls who traffic misinformation, civic leaders who attempt to pass anti-neurodifferent laws, and neurotypical anger, resentment, and/or frustration while also trying to support equality for neurotypical, neurodifferent, is the primary purpose of neurodifferent advocacy today.

this is so spot on.

when neurotypicals speak on neurodifferent issues, they are not speaking for us. they are speaking for their understanding of neurodifferent issues and they are speaking from inside their privilege. they cannot speak for us. it does not matter how well-meaning, well-informed/well-educated or sensitive they are – they are not qualified to speak on neurodifferent issues. that they do, despite their inherent incompetence, is nothing but them using their neurotypical privilege. any organization or educational body that is not run by or directed by neurodifferent people is automatically dominating the neurodifferent narrative are and violating neurodifferent people and their lives.

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Trump is human

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on March 19, 2018


Donald J. TrumpWe have to acknowledge that Donald J Trump is human. He might a terrible human, and possibly a really nasty person, I agree. His political views might be abhorrent to some of us. Nevertheless in all of what he does and do not do, he is human, and his actions can be analyzed from a human point of view.

When I look at how he is dealing with the Mueller investigation and with Mueller himself I am reminded of the old saying “If you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, the one that holla is the one ya’ hit.” – the question I am asking is: How was Trump hit?

Is he simply hypersensitive and feels that any negative attention, or the possibility of negative attention, is a threat to his existence?

Or is he actually guilty and naturally scared witless of getting caught?

Or is it, as my wife suggested when we discussed this, that he is so used to be obeyed, that when he said the first time the Russia connection shouldn’t be investigated, he expected everyone to drop it. That he simply cannot understand why people think it must be investigated?

Or does he have Aspergers? This was also suggested by my wife, because every now and then he seems confounded by the situation – he looks like he doesn’t have a clue as to what’s happening or how to deal with it. He doesn’t have a script to most of the situations he finds himself in.

When my wife brought up Aspergers I was reminded of a meme I saw on Facebook that claimed to depict Barack Obama’s and Donald Trump’s very different reactions to the Sandy Hook and Parkland school-shootings respectively. What I remembered of the images was that Obama was crying and Trump was smiling.

I know from experience that Aspies use ‘scripts‘ to a higher degree than non-Aspies to handle social and semi-social situations, so for me the visual memory of Trump smiling in the aftermath of Parkland clicked with ‘Aspergers’. Smiling at the camera even under very somber circumstances would be a possibility for an Aspie if they do not have a script for ‘very somber circumstances’. They could plausibly default to what they ‘normally’ do in-front of a camera – smile – (another script). Not because they do not feel sad or somber or because they are callous or unfeeling, but because they do not have a script for the specific situation.

I wanted to check out that meme once more, so I searched with “obama at sandy hook v trump at parkland” and I found it:

ObamaTrump Image Hoax

What I found stunned me – yes, I was shocked, angry, sad and frustrated when I realized that this image is a hoax inasmuch as it is misleadingPresidential Responses to School Shootings.

“Both of these images are real. The photograph of Obama was taken on 5 January 2016, while the President was speaking about the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting”[…]”The photograph of Trump is also real, but it is slightly misleading. The image included in the viral meme is a cropped version of a photograph that was posted to Trump’s official Instagram page after he visited victims of the Parkland school shooting at a hospital in Broward County. The original image shows that Trump is posing with the medical staff, many of whom are also smiling” (my emphasis)

I scrolled down and found two videos – one of Obama’s speech in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook school-shooting and one of Trump’s speech in the aftermath of the Parkland school-shooting:

From a human perspective I would say that Trump’s speech was appropriately somber and sympathetic. It was also well delivered with the right amount of emotion and gravity – ‘The idiot Trump‘ could not have delivered that speech.

This caused me to start a process of re-evaluating Trump as a person.

How much of what we see is Trump trying desperately to deliver to those around him (Tea-Baggers), what he believes a President should (because he has no scripts for ‘being the President’) and how much is actually Donald Trump?

Are his fumbling, stumbling and quite often unintelligible stunts in-front of the TV-cameras a result of him not having the scripts for those situations in combination with the stress and confusion that would normally assault an Aspie in such situations? Are his crazy tweets and firings of people in situations he cannot handle simply Trump defaulting to doing what he knows how to do from being a businessman, i.e defaulting to the scripts he does know?

If I had been a CEO all my life and was suddenly made President, perhaps without wanting to be, and not really knowing what that means, I would resort to what I know how to do to relieve the stress of not knowing what to do.

Back to the initial questions in this blog post.

Is he simply hypersensitive and feels that any negative attention, or the possibility of negative attention, is a threat to his existence?

It is quite possible isn’t it? Given what little we know about his personal background, childhood and young adulthood, I’d say it is very possible.

Or is he actually guilty of something and naturally scared witless of getting caught?

What if he is not guilty of colluding with the Russians – but those who brought him to power are – and there is something he is guilty of that has nothing to do with the Russians, that would destroy him?

Or is it, as my wife suggested when we discussed this, that he is so used to be obeyed, that when he said the first time the Russia connection shouldn’t be investigated, he expected everyone to drop it. That he simply cannot understand why people think it must be investigated?

Trump is first and foremost a businessman, a CEO – a corporation of the size we are talking about is not run by the employees. There is no democratic process in place, except among the share-holders to some extent. There are no ‘branches of government’ executive, legislative and judicial, that has to have their say of ‘yea or nay’ before the CEO can make a decision and act on it. What the CEO says is final is final, and if you do not like it or object to that, you are fired. If the CEO says there was no collusion there was no collusion. End of story.

Could it be a combination of all this?

Yes, it could, and I think it is.

I think Trump is trying to ‘be President’ the same way he is ‘being a CEO’ – and it is not working because the US is not a corporation. I think Trump is hypersensitive and feels that any negative attention is a threat to his personal existence. I also think that he never wanted to be the President of the US – he wanted to run for president, but he did not expect or want to win. I think Trump is guilty of something and scared witless of getting caught and I also think he is so used to be the one making the final decisions that it is inconceivable to him why Mueller must investigate Russia’s possible interference in the 2016 presidential election without Trump’s interference.

 

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Proportionality

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 29, 2014


When people say Israel’s response to Hamas aggression must be “proportionate”, they don’t mean it. What they actually mean is that Israel shouldn’t respond at all.

Which is fine: everyone’s entitled to their view. But Israel’s critics should at least be honest about what they’re really proposing. And what they’re proposing is that while Israel has a right to defend itself in principle, it shouldn’t do so in practice. It should just turn the other cheek.

(The Telegraph)

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Double Standards

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 20, 2014


Israel has existed in its current format since 1948. For as long as that it has been treated differently from all other states/nations in the world. It has been held to another standard than all other states/nations in the world.

Israel Bill Maher

Israel is expected to accept being attacked on a daily basis without responding, or if they do respond do so ‘proportionately’ – do you expect that from Russia in Chechnya, or the US in Afghanistan and Iraq? Or the Syrian government i Syria. No, you don’t. In fact no one says anything like that to any other nation using military force to deal with their terrorists. Oh, sure, every now and then there’s a slap on the wrist issued by the UN or EU against Russia, US or some other country going after terrorists, but that’s it. But never on the scale or with the ferocity they go after Israel on how they deal with Hamas.

No one calls what the US does in Afghanistan or Iraq genocide, or claims that Russia are Nazis for dealing with their terrorists. Why is that?

I think the answer is very simple. Israel has the audacity to call itself a ‘Jewish state’ – a home for all Jews that want to live there. In the expectations on Israel to deal with Hamas differently than Russia deals with Chechnya, or the US deals with the Taliban and Al-Qaeda, lies a deep and dark antisemitism. Israel is being held to a different standard simply because its majority population is Jewish.

If you are not willing to stand up for Chechnya, the Taliban or Al-Qaeda the way you stand up for Hamas, Fatah and Hezbollah, then you really should not stand up for either. Really.

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It just sucks

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 13, 2014


Just think about it – how would you feel if you had questions like this aimed at you, by total strangers?
Are you a boy or a girl? I bet you’re a girl. You’re really a girl, right? You can’t be a man and have boobs. Have you had SRS?

Sometimes I get so tired of the questions…

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A reaction to a reaction to an internet thing

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 10, 2014


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A Trans Man’s Transsexuality 101, Part 1

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 6, 2014


Transitions

Part One

“No wonder I’m all confused — one of my parents was a woman, the other was a man.” –Ashleigh Brilliant

This essay started out as a reaction to transphobic comments made in an on-line Community. I wanted to confront some of the comments made, and soon realized that in order to make my confrontation comprehensible, I would have to first clarify the issue of “What is Transgender/Transsexuality?” People don’t know what it is, so they base their opinion on misconceptions, misunderstandings and pure ignorance. This in turn leads them to express themselves in offensive, insulting and derogatory ways. I am a big believer in Education. If you educate people, they will be better people for it, and much hurt and pain can be avoided. There will of course always be people who refuse to be educated, but those are the minority.

For the purpose of this essay and…

View original post 1,666 more words

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The Loss of an Identity – Revision

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 3, 2014


This blog entry was originally written on August 5, 2006.
But with the appearance of ISIS/IS, I feel that a revision and expansion is in order.

In response to a friend, I wrote:
“I assume you are speaking about Haim Harari’s Undeclared WWIII.

Yes, it might sound like that, but in fact, he is claiming that there is a war going on, and then he explains how this is. I agree that he is drawing it to its extremes, when he claims that it is the Islamic world against the rest of the World. However, I do think he has a point about the method, structure and underlying reasons for terror actions as such. Instruments of terror used to be assassinations, revolutions, and up-risings – they were traditionally aimed at governments. Even the IRA did not target the public, although they used modern methods of Terrorism (bombings, hostage taking etc.) – the Islamic militants have changed the targeting and execution of Terrorism. I agree that not all Islamists are Terrorists – I suspect, but it is only a suspicion, that it has to do with culture. The Muslims of Indonesia are Peaceful, but it seems to me that Muslims in the Middle East are not, and even that is a generalization, because not all Muslims in the Middle East are non-Peaceful…so it is a specific group, not necessarily tied to their Islamic Faith. Then what is it? I think Haim Harari gives a pretty good picture.[a side note:]I am now going to say something that might sound like I am saying that Islam is a Barbaric Religion – it’s hard for me to explain this, mostly because English is not my native tongue, so please keep this in mind.

Put Islam into a historical/cultural perspective and it becomes pretty clear that the Middle East is a Tribal Society, based in Tribal Religion – Yes, Judaism is a Tribal Religion too – the only real difference between Judaism and Islam in this context is TIME. Judaism has been around for some 2000 years longer than Islam, which means that if you give Islam in the Middle East and its adherents another 1500 years (at most) it will have “evolved” beyond explicit Tribal culture. This is not intended as an expression value or judgment. Let us not forget that Saladin the Great founded one of the most advanced and enlightened civilizations the world has ever seen. I do not intend to insult Islam or Muslims, and if I have done so, I apologize.

I think that what Haim Harari is aiming at is not Islam or even Muslims, but this Tribal Culture that is using Islam as a pretext for its craziness. It could just as well have been Xianism or Shintoism or for that matter Judaism, the Religion is just a coat in which these militants are covering themselves. Trying to force Nations to adopt Political Systems that they have not yet acquired the readiness for, through political evolution, such as is now being done in Iraq, is only going to make matters worse. Each nation has to arrive at their own brand of democracy – unfortunately, we in the West are trying to force OUR brand of democracy on the Nations of the Middle/Near East, and like it or not but that is not going to work, because, fast or slow, they have to work out what democracy is within their context.

Some often point to the fact that Israel is a functioning democratic State, yet it is situated in the Middle and Near east. They forget that Israel was founded by Jews raised within the European Sphere, for at least the last 1000 years, and Jews from out-side the Middle/Near East are constantly immigrating to Israel – this gives Israel a different angle of approach.

And again, if I have said anything that is offending or insulting to Muslims or Islam – please tell me, because that was never my intention, and I did so unwittingly.”

Another Friend then commented:

“How does the tribal religion context mix in with violence? I do not see the absolute connection.”

Not Tribal RELIGION – Tribal CULTURE. I pointed out that Islam and Judaism are both Tribal Religions, because it was in Religion that TRIBE originated once upon a time. Most Societies have managed to transition from Tribal to National Culture often through significant adaptations of Religious Belief – the appearance of Islam is one such adaptation – not of the Quran, Torah or the Bible, but of Tribal Religion(s) indigenous to the Near and Middle East. If we “clean out” the religious aspect from the Prophet Muhammad, what we have is a political leader with a vision. A vision of all Arab tribes UNITED into ONE PEOPLE. The best way to unite and solidify a Society is through Religion – The Jews did it, The Egyptians did it…That is why I say that if we give Islam another 1500 years (at most) we will most likely see another Ottoman Empire as it was when it was at its high. Political evolution.

Tribal Culture and violence mix if you think of yourself as part of a Tribe that has to defend the tribal territory from competing tribes. If you look at any terror organization, you will see that they are all individually operating “cells.”
What holds the tribe together is either a common cause or a strong emotional common bond, if there are no such direct causes or emotional bonds, religion is a very strong replacement/connector.

The best analogy I can give is the gang-culture in most larger cities or the example of religious/political cults – William Golding actually describes this very well in Lord of the Flies – what is it that drive the boys in Lord of the Flies? Fear. Fear that is being used/manipulated by the one with either the most resources or the most genial ways of inflicting pain. Haim Harari suggests that the terror organizations’ low-rank members are being manipulated and used by leaders with genial ways of inflicting pain – what greater pain can there be than being ostracized from the only community you are being told you belong in? Or from G-d Himself?

We all know that Islam doesn’t prescribe FGM [Female Genital Mutilation] Yet it is basically only known to Islamic Countries in North and North Central Africa – and it is being enforced/taught to people using distortions of Islam, – why do you think that is? Because of Islam? No, because of a strong tribal culture. Women/girls who manage to escape undergoing FGM are without exception expelled/shunned in some way or other – because they, through no conforming to the customs of the “tribe,” have, in the eyes of the “tribe,” denounced the “tribe.” Humans are social beings, we will do pretty much anything to avoid being alone and on the out-side.

In most tribal societies, the one with the most resources, thankfully, is the one that acts as the Leader, so violence does not come into play unless there’s a competing tribe moving in on the territory.

Two small tribes may even work together for a short period to vanquish a larger tribe. When the goal is achieved the two small tribes will go their separate ways, only to next day be fighting each other again for the disputed hill-top or fishing water – or simply to achieve honor, either for the Tribe or for Head of the Tribe.

If the head of the tribe is G-d or something that replaces G-d, like strong emotions, such as anger, joy or grief, then you have a good incentive. This is true, especially if leaders of the tribe tell you that G-d expects you to die for the Tribe, preferably taking a couple of people from the other tribe with you as you exit from this world. Add to this, fiery rallies, giant meetings, demonstrations – those are nothing but replacements for spiritual experiences.
Just look at Germany during the Third Reich – ordinary, good, moral and ethical Germans were gathering en masse for the privilege to chant “Heil H-tler” and “Sieg Heil” and sing “Horst Wessel” – even those who did not believe in Nazism, who went to one or two of those rallies would find themselves chanting along, salute and all. What was Nazi Germany’s basic chant?

“Us, we the tribe, against them, the other Tribe”.

What was it Hitler used to drive that home? The Versailles Peace Treaty, a moment in history that most Germans thought of with feelings of being humiliated.

Guess what – the Arabs of the Near/Middle East have their own Versailles Peace treaty, only it was signed at Sevres 1920. Most came from that Peace Treaty feeling screwed, royally screwed. The anger many Arab Nations have towards the West is actually well based in history. When the Ottoman Empire fell, many Arabs felt that they had really, really lost something. They had lost what made them ARABS. Oh, they were still Arabs, and they were still Muslims, but their sense of self had been shattered.

Now, most went on, picking up the pieces, without much ado – but within the fabric of the Arab Nations in the Near and Middle East, there were those for whom there were no pieces to pick up, no alternative other than trying to either get it back or at least get even. Those were easy prey for the power hungry and the unscrupulous. What is it most of these Groups/Nations are saying they want? An Islamic/Muslim IDENTITY. They want to become ARABS again, as they were under Muhammad, and under Saladin the Great – and we are telling them, from their perspective that they can’t ever be allowed to be ARABS. No wonder they hate us.

Therefore, when someone comes along and tell these lost Arabs that he can give them this back, and more even, they grab it. Not all – as I said above, not all Arabs feel this way, but the ones with just a little too much hopelessness do. Along the way, I believe they have lost sense of what is really, really driving them. Now it has just become hatred aimed at the “Other Tribe.”

I wrote this in 2006. Now, eight years later, a radical Islamic group, ISIS/IS has emerged out of the Syrian civil war and the Arab spring, declaring an independent Islamic Caliphate.

“The jihadist insurgent group ISIS, or as it now prefers to be called, the Islamic State, appears well on the road to achieving its stated goal: the restoration of the caliphate. The concept, which refers to an Islamic state, presided over by a leader with both political and religious authority, dates from the various Muslim empires that followed the time of the Prophet Muhammad. From the seventh century onward, the caliph was, literally, his “successor.” (NY Times July 2 2014).

This group is a, as far as I can determine a direct descendant of Al-Qaida. Their purpose is not to wreck general havoc in the West. They are very open about wanting a re-establishment and restoration of what the Arabs lost in the Sevres. They do not want the Ottoman Empire. They want the sense of Arab identity they had under Saladin.

The Ayyubid empire under Saladin in 1188.

The Ayyubid empire under Saladin in 1188.

You and I can argue that they are crazy; that they have no idea what they have taken on, and so on. We might be right. We might be wrong. In the end, we will find that forcing democracy on others, or dictating to others what they should do, is a bad move. By consistently and relentlessly pushing our Western points of view and ways of doing things on the Arab world, we are not only painting ourselves into a corner that can only lead to more military ‘solutions’, we are forcing the Arab world to defend itself through military offense. We are literally causing the bloodshed we push our ways on others to avoid.

ISIS controlled or claimed territories July 2014

ISIS controlled or claimed territories July 2014

 

 

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