Sunday, March 17, 2019

myth: ablutions

Once upon a time, people crafted everything they needed with their own hands. They relied on each other for what they couldn’t do or make themselves. This was called community. They had community with the earth that sustained them and each other.

To ease their labor, they improved their technology. They tasted leisure and wanted more. Others saw that profit could be had from this desire for leisure. Technology, the earth and people were then diverted to make machines and to make things, rather than husbanded equitably to provide for all.

People left their crafting for what became known as work to make money to buy the things no one knew how to make anymore. People were unable to feed and clothe themselves. They did not know how to make water or heat. Because people unlearned how to heal themselves, they feared and hated death. 

Because they relied on things, their hearts forgot the meaning of community and they became attached instead to things. Their impotence created a hunger for more, a fear of losing things. Their appetite was as insatiable as their dissatisfaction. Thus community became enslaved, sacrificed, burned, upturned to produce things. 

Because it was too painful to reckon with their impotence, too painful to reckon with their appetite, too painful to reckon with their wreckage, they devised rituals to atone. Each week, they separated recycling from trash. The more zealous ones, further separated materials into compost and glass. The most pious offered their electronic offal, their electric detritus at designated shrines. Still others poured what was no longer useful into trash bags for the poor and needy. 

They emptied bins, closets and garages and they deemed it righteous. These ablutions cleansed them, freed them to consume more.