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The Chains of Necessity
We all have then same basic needs and share these traits with the rest of life.
We are bound by our own needs and that defines our freedom
Class division has pitted the exploiter against the producer. The method of binding has been through our own biology that is tied to nature. The fetters that bind the toiling masses are stronger than anything made of iron or concrete, but are also enforced using iron and concrete where seen necessary through a standing army, police state and prisons, even prison house of entire nations, such as Gaza. They are the fetters of necessity used to keep people in a position of exploitation. These fetters are the needs for water, food, shelter, air, rest and elimination that is common for all life. These are the necessities that must be fulfilled before freedom can be attained; as Hegel stated "Freedom can only come when necessity is fulfilled". Humanity in the form of class division has created a class that is free and a class that is tied to necessity. Freedom has been expropriated by the exploiter while the toilers not only have to fulfill their own necessity, but that of the exploiter as well. In addition, the sum of their lives is a day to day struggle to reproduce the next days work and the next generation of workers. Things like food, water, shelter and the like have been used as a tool of control and as weapons against the exploited. In addition, the toilers have been kept in a state of ignorance while the exploiters keep for themselves a secret knowledge of true history, science and politic whereby they maintain the order of their brand of society. The exploited toiler gets a manufactured myth of history and the blinders of superstition for control and comfort. The alienation of the toiler from nature and production is just one of the results of this method of ruling. Repetition of history on the part of the toiler while the exploiter learns from it and invents ever more clever tricks to maintain rule is another result. Thus the history of the future is the repetition of past history in a chain of self made and self fulfilling prophecy. On this trickery, God is blamed, and the rulers of humanity, the self appointed lords of all are exonerated.
Those who toil for a living must become aware of these facts and just how tight and effective the controls of the chains of necessity are. Society has evolved to a state where money has become the leash by which all actions are controlled. That leash grows shorter by the day and it is constantly jerked. The exploiters control the leash and the toilers are forced to respond to its control. As a universal value, money is very effective in trade relations, but is also susceptible to being manipulated in order to create a legalized theft through actions like inflation, devaluation and interest charges. Money is also addicting to the point of assuming godlike proportions and the fact that no matter who you are; you never can get enough. The proof of godlike dimensions resides in the massive structures of banks, stock exchanges, insurances houses and the like that dwarf the massive cathedrals from the Medieval and feudal eras. Today, even the church has become totally absorbed with money and as such, money ranks with God in importance. Thus money has a massive fetishism that was once directed to the forces of nature in its supremacy over all.
It is money that has allowed for the development of the complex and specialized society that we have today. This has been a continuous battle between trust and corruption throughout history. The trust side of the dialectic allowed for healthy growth, development and progress, whereas corruption in the form of various scams and swindles has brought an end to many orders in decadence and decay, to be swept away in many cases by revolution. And then the cycle begins anew.
Consider for a moment just how much you could do on your own. Necessity dictates that you will have to procure good quality drinking and cooking water, nutritious food and find or make some form of shelter. As the people of the developing world today demonstrate, as has been the case throughout history, just these three necessities gobble up a lot of energy and time. Individually, building a complex society and civilization is impossible. All the specialized jobs cannot be done by an individual or the family group. At best, water can be found in rivers, streams, lakes and wells. Food is either gathered in the wild, captured, killed and butchered for its meat, or grown where conditions permit. Shelter must be simple and often as mobile as the people involved. Little else can be achieved. More complex tasks require specialization and specialization requires freedom from necessity. The method that allows for specialization to occur is the universal value of trade in the form of money, which requires trust in order to work at its most efficient. Violations of trust will cause economic meltdowns and mass poverty.
But as with all things dialectic, money has its good side and its negative as witnessed by our progress that has even allowed us to leap into space and the disastrous world wide economic collapse of 2008-09 that triggered mass homelessness, unemployment and starvation. Money has allowed humanity to develop high civilization, but has also brought them crashing down. Behind all of this is money manipulation by those who sought to gain greater freedom at the expense of others by increasing the necessity of the ones cheated to procure ever more money to do just the same as earlier. Money and lots of it means power and power means freedom for those who have it. This means that those who steal value through inflation and control of the money supply throw the people who are on the bottom of society, the worker, the farmer and the unemployed, into a position of working all the more harder just to obtain the same necessities. This translates to a loss of freedom at the bottom of society where all the work is done to keep a complex civilization going. When the work to survive exceeds the carrying capacity to also keep civilization going, then civilization will suffer as people attend to basic survival. When the carrying capacity is exceeded for basic survival, then the people eventually die.
Out of this mix is born struggle; the struggle to obtain the benefits of civilization that were so hard won through history. But the benefits of civilization are very attractive and a struggle ensues to obtain them even by brutality and theft from those who worked hard to achieve use value out of values they found in nature. The struggle can come from the outside or within the state itself. The nature of the evolution of civilization through history in dialectic cycles has been between growth and development, wealth and power accumulation by a few and then the breakdown of relations between classes, corruption, death and revolution. All of this is mediated by the desire for freedom from the absolute form of the chains of necessity.
With each round of development, ever more sophisticated means were developed to take care of necessity. These are the machine, farming on a massive scale, energy production, industrialization and efficient infrastructure to move everything around. Some of the drawbacks of such concentration have been and are pollution and the alienation of the producer from production and nature. But even with all of this, necessity still haunts most people, all because of the way money is handled for the ends of profit for a few rather than in service to all of humanity. Just 1 percent of humanity controls and owns 90 percent of the resources.
The exploiter keeps the exploited toilers ignorant and divided into groups over various ethnicity, beliefs, color, age, sex, sexual orientation and so on. The exploited are divided into groups that are put into opposing camps and fight one another, all to keep the competing exploiters in power and wealth. His kind of division fuels wars which are also highly profitable. The exploited toiler is forced to commit mass murder, destruction of resources, torture and the like through the breadth and depth of societies around the world. Superstition and religion are used to enforce this brand of civilization as has been done for millennia. Today, capitalism is the driving force behind all of this.
Given the above, it is a wonder that anyone who is an absolute slave to the exploiter would desire to continue to live. Yet the masses do despite the difficulty of all of the oppression and the inability to meet basic needs. Further, they continue to allow exploitation on a daily basis, marry or have sex and reproduce children that form the next generation of the exploited. Despite the fact that there is enough to feed and house everyone on the planet due to the combined efforts of all the producers and toilers, most go without because they lack the means to obtain life’s necessities from those who control it and claim ownership thereof. This is because the means of exchange; money is manipulated through interest, devaluation and inflation in order to accumulate it into fewer and fewer hands through the banks and the governments that are beholden to them. The creation and maintenance of artificial deficits is another way to do this.
The resulting agony of all this evolved wage slavery enforced by terror, torture, propaganda, superstition and the like is enough to make a person recognize and adopt the spiritual truths as their own without other input. Such insights of suffering also come from Buddha, Patanjali, the Vedas and some of the books in the Bible like Job and Revelation. These warn of suffering and personal experience of this within class divided and alienated society reinforces these ancient insights. However, few people seem to be able to make the "jump" and connection, continuing to cling to the usual errors including false religionists, the vulgar materialists, vulgar Marxists and most certainly capitalists, petite bourgeois and almost all of the ignorant proletariat. Patanjali warned of five dangers; the fear of death, the clinging to life, ignorance, egotism and mistaking the illusory as the real (the orders of civilized society and idealist religion as real instead of the natural world as is upon which all is founded).
As we live in a material cosmos, we cannot break the chains of necessity without killing ourselves. But we can gain some of the freedom robbed from us over the eons by the few through ignorance and force. This has to be done through popular mass revolution, and today, it must be world wide. It cannot come otherwise; or be forced without disaster.