This is a raw transcript of our weekly broadcast of One Mountain, Many Paths. In this episode, Dr. Marc Gafni describes five key points to evolve public culture in celebrating Outrageous Acts of civic virtue.
This week is a week of enormous celebration. Millions of people watched the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States.
It is important to talk about this because the elections, the breaching of the Capitol and the inauguration, are not merely American events, they are world events.
We need to act globally because we are in desperate need of global coherence today.
There's an enormous amount that actually needs to be said about this. There is an enormous amount of confusion about it around the globe.
But I want to just limit it to these five points that are key to actually develop and evolve our very humanity, and to evolve our public culture.
Because creating a discourse that matters, is the deepest way to actually avoid dystopia and enter utopia.
Five key points to evolve public culture
1. Acknowledging shadow makes you trustable.
First of all, it is important to acknowledge the shadow and to acknowledge lower self. This is what makes us trustable.
For example, there have been many discussions on voter fraud in the American elections. I have studied voter fraud extensively and done quite a lot of research. There absolutely is voter fraud in American elections that needs to be dealt with.
But actually, in this election - and we have checked very clearly - whatever voter fraud there might have been on both the Democratic and the Republican side, it was minor, and it was in no sense grounds to overturn the election.
But what happened was, that there wasn't an essential acknowledgement of shadow where the lower self in the individual person and the lower self in society was recognized.
We would have been wiser to actually acknowledge that shadow. It is important to recognize that there is indeed a history of voter fraud which takes place in multiple ways.
If you acknowledge this shadow, then you can actually say, voter fraud is an issue, there's an enormous amount of data on it, and it's an extensive and complex topic that deserves real attention. And then we would be trustable to say that in this election there was not a level of voter fraud that could overturn the result of the election.
Had we said that and owned the shadow, then we could have dealt with the issue far more powerfully.
So, our first key point in evolving public culture is the importance of acknowledging the shadow of the lower self in the individual person and in society: this is what makes us trustable.
2. Acknowledging the horror of what happened.
The second key point in evolving public culture, is to recognize that breaching the American Capitol was a horror, and there is no justification for it.
It is important to recognize that what happened was not a rally that got out of hand. Therefore, it cannot be compared with other rallies that got out of hand. It was actually a deliberate part of a larger attempt by a sitting American president to not allow a peaceful transfer of power. That just needs to be said, and we need to say it clearly.
Breaching the Capitol with the intention of possibly getting yourself killed, actually causing five deaths, violating with intention to disturb the essential process of government and the peaceful transition of power, essentially undermining the integrity of America's capacity to act in the world; that is a horror.
There's no way to justify that, and that has to be held accountable. Having said that - as the New Yorker and other publications have pointed out - there was a wide range of people who entered the capitol with a wide range of intention. From the person who left a quarter behind on Nancy Pelosi's desk in return for an envelope that was taken, to far more extreme positions. Each person and story must be investigated individually and carefully. That is the way of justice.
3. Critique our own heroes.
Third, what is enormously critical in building our public culture and actually creating the New Human and the New Humanity, is having the ability to both celebrate and critique our heroes.
If you're not willing to critique your heroes when they are dead on wrong. When you are always critiquing the other side, then you've lost your integrity. You have lost your capacity for discernment, you have lost your freedom and you have become a parrot. You have lost something essential in your humanity.
When we are able to love and critique the heroes that we have enormous respect for, then we can create an actual respectful dialogue. To respect each other actually means that we can disagree.
So, for example, the suggestion that the Capitol police reacted as they did because the rioters were white, is categorically wrong. That is identity politics of the worst kind and simply not true. Watch the videos. The capitol police are not racist. And we must be very very careful in pointing out that we must critique fiercely anyone who implies they were, even if they are heroes. We must judge each person by the content of their character and by their deeds and not by the color of their skin.
4. Celebrating each other's heroes.
This is a big celebration moment. So now that we have talked about critiquing our heroes, let us talk about celebrating our heroes.
There were great heroes that need to be recognized, these heroes are really important. There's virtually an unseen group of heroes whose names actually will be sung in history, who actually held our democracy together.
But here's the thing, these eight heroes that we invite you to celebrate with us in the clip below, they are Republicans.
Of course, there were so very many heroes on the democratic side of these elections, with special note to the incredible work of organizers in the African American community who actually tipped the election. But they have already been celebrated by many people, as they should be.
So why do we choose to celebrate these eight Republicans? Because almost unilaterally, these eight Republicans, when it came down to doing something that would actually change the game, they actually acted with integrity. And the assumption in so much of the mainstream media was they would not. They actually did the right thing —whether it was in the Supreme Court, whether it was in the legislators, whether it was governors, whether it was state attorney general—, they stood for justice.
So, the next question that arises is: why were these eight people heroes, and why were there so many other Republicans that were not? Why did those people do one thing and these people another thing?
5. Character actually matters.
The reason why someone chooses to stand in integrity it this: character matters.
Some people say: "We don't judge a president on character, we judge a president on their policy." But "post-Trump" this is no longer true. Because in Trump, character became policy.
So, character matters. Meaning the ability to step out of the bubble of pressure upon you, to find the value that lives inside of you. To listen to the voice of integrity inside of you. Interiority matters, character matters, values matter, and for that policy has to be put aside.
We have to celebrate the incredible integrity and goodness of people who did what they should have done.
So, character matters, but it is actually deeper than that: democracy worked.
Democracy stood because people stood in their virtue, in their goodness, and in their integrity.
Democracy worked. That is a big deal. In this moment, we must celebrate partial victories. We don't only celebrate a complete victory, we celebrate partial victories. So, this was a huge and gorgeous partial victory for democracy.
A pluralistic democracy
We briefly touched upon five key points to evolve public culture.
We become trustable when we acknowledge our shadow. We want to be able to celebrate heroes and critique our heroes. We stand for integrity and come to realize that what unites us is so much greater than that which divides us.
It is not about Democrat and Republican. We are part of a world-centric movement towards the Good, the True, and the Beautiful.
We want a pluralistic democracy that functions in an exciting and potent and powerful way. Democracy is the most important institution. It took 10,000 years to get to democracy. Democracy itself is a momentous leap of evolution, and so we have to protect it.
Let's trust each other again. Let's reach our hands around the world, across party lines, and let's trust good people to stand.
We can trust good people to stand if we actually stand for those virtues and we make them real every day, all the time.
[This blogpost is almost all direct quotes from Dr. Marc Gafni collected from the raw transcript of the featured clip below, which is created from the free weekly broadcast of One Mountain, Many Paths, happening live every Sunday at 10 am PT]
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