Sunday, April 10, 2005

The Experience of Oppression

There is nothing intrinsically oppressive about life; on the other hand every moment of life is lived in relation to the forces that act upon us. We are free to act. We are never free from the forces of our environment acting upon us. The experience of freedom is a balance of these forces, internal and external, so that the actor is able to act according to his will.

The experience of oppression then is a subjective one indicating an unresolved internal opposition to external forces. The experience of oppression is one of a victim unable to resolve his internal desire to act with an external force in opposition. The oppressed does not feel that he can enact his will.

I find nothing more objectionable than the feeling of oppression. When I encounter this experience I find it useful, in that it shifts my balance towards freedom, to assess the forces acting upon me and the ways in which I wish to act. Inevitably I identify forces acting upon me that can be avoided, nullified or pacified and aspects of my will and expectations that are not significant or more commonly are not wholly mine. My first statement is often this, “There is nothing important to do.” You may be surprised by this but I find it freeing in the extreme as well as true. From this foundation I build up each individual item of internal will that I wish to retain balancing it against my external reality. This exercise inevitably leaves me with simple courses of action to force my will on my environment. These new plans and expectations are the very keys to freedom and the balance that needs to be regained.

1 comment:

JDubba said...

Interesting. A logical but non-intuitive shift of the concept of oppression from an external to an internal frame of reference. For some reason this strikes me as quite stoic in its implication for application in day to day life.