9 Years Ago TodayBy Talismanicidols on November 28, 2015
9 Years ago today I left the military. It was the most adult decision I’ve ever made, but not for the reasons most might assume. I have my own world views but with respect to those people in the armed forces I’ve learned that being preachy often does not lead to learning and growth but to defensiveness and isolation. I left the military because I didn’t feel I truly understood why our missions were taking place in the greater scheme of things. I could have served longer and climbed the ranks into more classified intelligence but I chose instead to do my own independent research.
What I found was quite a bit of conspiracy at first, then mass psychology, then economic evolution and military operations in support of private interests, deep mysticism, shallow mysticism, DJ Mysticism, Rick and Morty, etc… you get the point.
I also chose to leave the Air Force to pursue life as a touring musician. As much as this might have seemed like less than an adult decision, it led to my understanding of industry in general. As I sit writing this, I am in Los Angeles. This is where I always wanted to be for the past 15 years of my life. Things have changed since I held that wish and those things are primarily my world views.
Now I wouldn’t go so far as Mark Passio did in his talk “The Cult of Ultimate Evil” where he says that all military and police are bad people and cowards (I’m paraphrasing and encourage anyone who cares to know about cult mentality and inherent morality to listen to the way he eloquently puts it into his own words) but I see where he’s coming from.
I do feel that any truly moral person would never use a phrase like “I’m just following orders” to justify her or his own actions. That is why I don’t put myself in any situation where I would have to say such a thing. Hence leaving the military and avoiding clicks or groups that require that I trust something external at the expense of my better judgment.
Only select animals, computers, children, the mentally inept, brainwashed or scared individuals would allow the command of another human or group to dictate their actions above their own moral compass. I also feel that if you do something you inherently feel wrong about, passing the responsibility off to your superiors or chain of command is a cowardly act.
And thus, I couldn’t in good conscience continue in the military when, at the time, I hadn’t wrapped my head around the seeming complexity of military operations and occupation. I couldn’t justify being a part of a greater group, signified by the uniform I wore, that carried guns into other countries. I don’t doubt that military force is necessary for protection against any and all enemies, however I’ve lost my faith in the judgment of leadership that decides which are our enemies and which are allies.
But before this post starts reeking of opinions on the military and it’s operations, I want to state that I come from a military family, have many friends in the military and as much as I share the disagreement of most military tactics and mentality, my views are less extreme than that of many public figures that I get associated with.
I’ve found that I personally operate the best when I wear my moral anatomy like a suit of armor yet never inflict that morality upon another without dire need (i.e. when someone’s safety depends on my intervention). In all the lesser scenarios, such as giving talks or radio interview, or even having conversations/debates with people, I choose a balanced approach.
I listen first. Not only to the content, but I listen for what inner forces are present and alive the one talking. Is he driven by sound logic? Is she casting a blanket statement over the topic? Is he just venting? Does she really care to debate or does her content only aim to serve the underlying joke or specific point of the conversation?
Then I speak and add to the flow of the conversation. If I’m not being pretentious, playing a role, or trying to impress the person with my intellect, then the only thing left filtering and governing my words are my inherent morality. That cornerstone will never let me unnecessarily offend someone’s egoistic worldview. Nor will it allow me to hold my tongue when someone really needs to come back to reality and atone.
There’s a right and a wrong way to challenge people. Or better put, there’s an effective and ineffective (counterproductive) way to challenge people. But that “way” can only be found in the present moment when that person is in front of you. Only the human sitting across from he/she who must be challenged on their dangerous perspective can truly know the right timing and delivery as to be effective and lasting on their conscience. And in my humble opinion, only that human can know that their heart is either proverbially open or absent at the time of the challenge.
I’m not sure if the long subtle aggressions in life build up and lead to the quicker, more violent ones or vice versa, but I do know this. The tone of voice used and the body language employed by the speaker cannot be separated from the content anymore than the rhythm and melody of a song should be compartmentalized from one another. No matter how incredibly astute some arguments might be, if the voice or demeanor are smug, cold, aggressive or anything less than straight from the morality and wisdom, than the argument gets drowned out by the emotion driving it.
All in all, if subtle aggressions can build into violent ones, then the subtle one’s might be unintentional, but violent none the less. If the heart is not compassionate yet strong in its stance, the other will not feel heard. He or she will not feel that true communication took place. Only when intellect and emotion speak together in a unified language can real, transmutational human relationship occur. And real human relationships are, in my humble opinion, the only true revolutionary technology that can be applied to the gaping wound on greater society.
It starts at home. In the heart. In every word we speak, our authenticity speaks louder. In every gesture our character is seen clearly.
I know there’s a way in this life for me. That way does not require a uniform, and frankly revolts from uniformity of anything but the most basic human ethics, built upon solid morality, supported by a clear mind and enlivened by the intangible and infinite whatever.
9 Years ago today, I left the military. A lot can happen in 9 years.
Categories: Dahli's Journey, Uncategorized.