Michael Mendizza

Writer, Filmmaker

We can’t solve a problem at the level of the problem


Parenting, Playful Advice

Forgive me for restating the obvious. It is really very simple. Rape, domestic violence, child abuse, depression, addictions, chronic anxiety, fear, rage, most chronic diseases; diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer’s, many hormonal cancers; breast, testicular, heart disease, ALS, attention disorders, bullying, gangs, male-female inequity, poverty, the failure of education, corporate exploitation of human beings and the environment, you get the point, are expressions of failed or impaired capacity to relate nonviolently with other human beings, society, culture and with nature. All are attachment disorders, attachment being attuned, empathic, respectful, caring relationships.

The source of this chronic-systemic stress can be traced to the earliest patterns or templates of mother-infant relationship, . The nature and quality of relationship experienced, or not, during the very early stages of a human being’s life establish the patters that shape that person’s entire life, therefore society, therefore culture, therefore what the next generation experiences. Early imprints, empathic or alienated, express in a multitude of ways and these behaviors become society, and that society is the environment that shapes the next generation’s experience, empathic or alienated. What goes around comes around.

Treating adult manifestations is pathetically ineffective. A problem can’t be solved at the level of the problem. The only sane response is to value, inspire, nurture and support mothers to do the same with their most precious and important responsibility, responding deeply and approximately the future of humanity at their breasts.

The fundamental obstacle to this obvious remedy is that males denied appropriate nurturing during the earliest stages of life become pathologically violent towards women as teens and adults, thereby denying the social-cultural support women need to nurture their children, male and female. What goes around comes around.

This cycle of pain, rage, violence, abuse and violence against women and therefore childhood neglect is a paradigm, one that expresses in every aspect of our individual lives and culture; birth trauma and separation, society’s complete lack of support for mothers and families during the first years of life forcing women to abandon their children to institutions, and forced stranger-care and compulsory schooling are institutions, along with their virtual reality clones, dead toxic food, poisoned water, corporate exploitation, police brutality, the war, drug and banking cartels, etc., etc.

James W. Prescott, Joseph Chilton Pearce, Ashley Montagu, pre and perinatal advocates and many others have been pounding this simple message for the past 75 years. But, paradigms are realities. Once color blind, describing color is futile. Society and its institutions, being expressions of the disorder, are incapable of solving the problems they create. One need only look at the relentless political assault on human and reproductive rights, government corruption, health care fraud, global agriculture, test and drill education, all pathological, insane. One doesn’t arrive at the Mad Hatters Tea Party expecting a rational conversation unless you are mad and don’t know it. And we are.

Eminent physicist David Bohm observed:

We are faced with a breakdown of general social order and human values that threatens stability throughout the world. Existing knowledge cannot meet this challenge. Something much deeper is needed, a completely new approach. I am suggesting that the very means by which we try to solve our problems is the problem. The source of our problems is within the structure of thought itself.

Krishnamurti, perhaps one of the most original teachers since Siddhartha, was equally direct:

It is the responsibility of each individual to bring about their own transformation which is not dependent on knowledge or time.

Knowledge, time and thought in this context represent the tea-party paradigm-reality we are all marinating in. All this boils down to identity, who we ‘think’ we are, our self-world view and the forces that forge that identity; natural, innate, empathic intelligence or the Mad Hatters raving? This social-identity, our precious ego-personality evolved as an adaptive coping pattern, a requirement for anyone joining the party. The party (society-culture), its participant’s ravings, (knowledge/time) and the persona of everyone involved (ego-identity) emanate from the same root, each manifestation mirroring the other in its unique way, appearing completely different but not. Collectively this paradigm-reality represents what Joseph Chilton Pearce calls a self-generating strange loop, and it is.

The United States ranks last of all developed nations in just about every category of family support.  It is a crisis of identity. That is our real challenge, who we think we are. Bohm’s observation is true: something deeper is needed, a completely new approach. It is true, a problem can’t be solved by the source that created the problem. Krishnamurti offered; each individual must bring about this critical leap to sanity themselves, by ceasing to identify with the false hopes and false fears insisted upon by everyone at the party. When that identification ends, something deeper, innate intelligence, representing billions of years of constant refinement and expansion, which is nature, our nature, is there responding with care, affection and appropriateness, wholeness and wellbeing for everyone and everything. But, believing in the madness must end before sanity can begin. After that the problems simply disappear.

Michael Mendizza