Martyrdom’s negative pole is victimization, mortification in the older versions. In the extreme of this energy which is characterized by paralyzed inaction and being the object of attack;. It experiences the terror of dying (Latin root morte=death), while being alive to feel it happening. It is the Ego identified with the personality and attached to the body which causes this malady to be cast under the heading, which Michael Students commonly know, as a Chief Feature.
But the Universe does not waste anything, especially opportunities! And like the infinitely intelligent computational array which the TAO is, it utilizes everything to its advantage. Thus was staged an experimental drama for its own diversity and expansion. Such was the case of the Grandma Bus Monitor – 68 year-old Karen Klein being harassed by several adolescent boys in an age old exercise of intimidation, and captured on video that went viral over the Internet. http://youtu.be/l93wAqnPQwk
The TAO, through orchestration and collaboration with the Essences involved, took this Attacker-Victim Monad and used it to exemplify a trend that has become epidemic, but whose roots go back to the origins of our species. Today we call it bullying, historically it comes under the heading of intolerance and arrogance. With the scene orchestrated, a heroine emerged, not so much as a victim, but as a graceful Martyr with her unwillingness to retaliate in kind. Instead, present with her emotions, she bore the sorrow that always is a subtext in such exchanges. While happening, someone’s surveillance of the incident, that creepy way that modern technology has given us opportunity for citizen journalist or voyeurs to arise in our midst; released the digital video of the incident and a star was born. One, that will, at the completion of all the tangential effects of this incident, is liable to give her the means to retire from her menially paid job, and perhaps be raised to a symbol. An icon of the grace of the common folk but more so, a lightning rod for the growing number of people whose feelings of victimization, of being attacked, of being subjected to a bully, or oppressed by a group of conspirators, have found an outlet to take their anger and shame and channel it into a statement of support for the underdog.
What I refer to is something no less than remarkable! In seeing the original video, someone took up Karen’s case and with the speeds possible only in the digital universe made a call to arms, rallying people to acknowledge and sooth her suffering by raising money to award her with a “vacation.” http://www.indiegogo.com/loveforkarenhklein?c=home
What has happened next to this 2nd Mature Warrior, is equivalent to the one soldier on a battlefield, whose grace under fire and soft spoken but determined courage has inspired the tens of thousands of people who otherwise would remain in the trenches of shame and anonymity to take heart and stand up and be counted. In doing so, the thought form or meme of that could be my grandma being harassed by a group of taunters and with no one coming to her aid; touched a deep cord of outrage at the injustice. Also, in others was stirred a heartfelt compassion for someone facing attack alone. Applying a term I use frequently, they “got gotten” on two universal experiences of our share human dilemmas, and which continues to resonate.
The news media, normally acting like rats sniffing in the waste heap of human antics, has in one of their few moments of conscientious reporting, taken both Karen’s ordeal and its aftermath and turned into a kind of anthem. http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/47946369/ns/today-today_news/t/bullied-bus-monitor-wants-apology-explanation/#.T-nLJRee4SY Hopefully the consciousness raising, serendipitously provided us by the negative pole of Observation, will continue to galvanize our attention on an underpinning of how the Young Soul world most effectively keeps a status quo in place: through intimidation and denigration and the implied threat of violence.
But while Karen Klein may have been actually victimized by harassment, she did not act like a victim in the aftermath. This Mature Soul Warrior, represented here in the guise of an elderly woman could easily have tapped into her Victim Sub Personality, righteously decrying a possible attitude of “poor me, I’m old and a woman and a poor working stiff,” but she did not. Instead, acting with evolved understanding she is not calling for retribution or punishment of these “children” by pressing criminal charges. Rather she is showing a far more wise face, and calling the boys’ to accountability by suggesting that what be levied against them is the removal of something they want and value: depriving them from school bus ridership and an exclusion of playing sports. And in a true show of justice, not forever, but for one year! Enough to give the offending students plenty of time to wallow in the shame of being isolated (passing them back the experience) and to deny them something they desire. But more significantly, allowing the knowledge that they themselves incurred this consequence by their own actions.
In a way, we might call this an exemplar of master parenting. Something that seems to be sorely missing in many households today. Her responses have been clear and rational, weighing the consequence against the act. And this not from a psychologist, but from a seasoned grandmother who wants the children to learn, not to burn. Perhaps our culture, which seems to have refocused its attention on harsher and harsher punishments might turn its attention to resolutions that offer a path of transformation by reasoned, appropriate, but determined restitution; not brutish, knee-jerk retribution.
But she has risen to the occasion and gone one step further…in denying the sincerity of the boys “apology” she has asked, not demanded mind you, that each of them face her and bear their souls before her in “explanation.” Talk about personal responsibility and willingness to confront an issue directly! Wow! Millions of us can take more than a few lessons from this down-to-earth and meaningful willingness to resolve an injustice first hand! Leave it to a Warrior to show such guts, eh? But if there is any major underlying theme which should be drawn from this scenario, it is this: We can choose how we act when we are being victimized by a larger force, either with retaliation or with justice.
The former may temporarily assuage our anger for the transgression, but no real healing ever takes place. Yet, when a victim seeks justice, instead of revenge, and has the wisdom to realize that only by confronting the motivation in the perpetrator, can there ever be a lessening of the crime’s repeat. Then, the entire consciousness of society may advance. It is an ideal whose timely appearance is crucial to turn the tide on the reactionary attitudes which serve as the pillars holding in place the the shroud of intimidation.
If there is one lesson that should, and hopefully will, be most heralded as the moral of this story; it is that we can be inspired to show grace under fire. It will be needed to both heal and defeat the aggressive intimidation nested within the Young Soul ethos. That courage can direct us to realize that it is possible to bring about victory even in the aftermath of being victimized. Yet it may also serve to remind us of what Jesus said in the Beatitudes that: “it is the meek (not the weak) who shall inherit the Earth.” All of this hinges, of course, on the meek refusing to be weak any longer. Just like Karen Klein.