Human Rights · Riding A Dead Horse · Uncategorized

The View from Above (or the Twelfth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth Reports on the 61st UN Commission on Human Rights, March 31, April 1, April 4 2005)

From their vantage point of everywhere and nowhere, the Spirits watched on closely as the human beings gibbered and jabbered away like their primate cousins. For the Spirits, talking is one of the human activities that interest them the least (unless, of course, the Spirits are being invoked), but these particular weeks of talking are never missed. These moments of the Commission on Human Rights are a unique moment when the Spirits are brought together from all corners of the world to meet with each other where many of the people who forced them into the Spirit Realm are present as well. The Spirits know that these moments of endless diplomatic chatter are, in fact, a gift from The Creator for these humans’ souls to grow, to accept responsibility for their actions, to humbly ask for forgiveness from the victims, and then for all to move forward with healing and reconciliation. But sadly and rarely is this the case in the Commission, and this is why so many Spirits come together in Room 17 of the Palace of Nations where, in theory, justice is meant to be served.

One grave problem faced by the Spirits is that people don’t seem to notice they are there, except for a very few. People have stopped believing in love, magic and lost their faith. Humans no longer recognized their own Angels present in their dreams and waking moments; they choose instead to ignore the signs. This makes existence for the Spirits tortured and painful from their perspective. Furthermore, some of the Spirits were taken out of their physical form in such violent and brutal manners that they have not yet fully accepted they are dead, and are dangerously angry at the humans who drew their lot. These rage soaked Spirits are the ones that can hurt humans if they carry fear or arrogance. These are the Spirits that, like humans, choose the path of violence and vengeance over The Creator’s path of forgiveness and peace, and they wreak havoc on the lives of those who do not consciously atone for what they and their ancestors have done in any number of ways.

Room 17 is full of all kinds of Spirits, and at times they visit the few who see them or sense them, and they tell them things, or show them things that have happened or are to come.

Like, the image of a little boy who was hurt by a priest who sits at the desk allotted to The Vatican, the boy’s sad eyes like tarnished gems and his shoulders hunched from secrets never released until this very moment.

A woman from Zimbabwe, tribal, who had been raped to death, her rage hovering above and around her murderer, following his every move and leaving a red chill in her wake.

Spirits who bled to death in clandestine torture chambers. Hacked to pieces by machetes. Hunted down by the governments who were to protect them and now whose relics are in display in colonial museums. Spirits starved into the Spirit Realm because of white greed and privileged arrogance. Warriors for truth and justice who met grotesque ends at the hands of evil-doers. Demon shadows attached to whole delegations of government representatives, darkly glowing with malevolence and retribution to be. Victims of genocide in all its forms, acts and policies who wander dazed in the Spirit Realm and watch as history repeats itself. Spirits who disappeared from physical form from weeks of violence and whose families still search for them. Victims of violent cultures who destroy the bodies and spirits of women and children, in every way imaginable, from the mutilation of their genitals to the lessened value of a woman’s life. Children in war, abused from all sides.

Hundreds upon hundreds of Spirits who congregate amongst the humans to watch, to guide, to relay, to love, to offer them this gift from The Creator to do the right thing. The sense of love and compassion radiated is always the most surprising thing, but this is part of what they learn on The Journey into the Spirit World. The Spirits with anger equally understandable, but far less frequent. Because the Spirits know it is their love and our open hearts that will transform the world into all the wondrous possibilities of what we could be.

Although, it does take time to become accustomed to the presence of Spirits. They are, after all, cold to our touch. We feel this as a prickle on the back of our neck or an icy breeze that moves through us from the inside out making our hair stand on end. In the beginning, we ignore it, looking around and wondering where the draft of cold air is coming from. Once we begin the awakening to their presence, the first moment of recognition can bring fear. Why fear? Is it the unknown? Is it images from silly scary movies that have painted a destructive portrait of who Spirits are? Or are we afraid that our prayer is answered and we are never alone, that we are always surrounded by loving Spirits who guard and protect, guide us throughout our lives? In these first moments of remembering the Spirits, our Guardian Angel presents themselves and we begin to cultivate the faith we had as children that anything is possible and life is beautiful in all its dark and light. Once you have found that faith in you and you trust your Angel, you realize that nothing has the power to hurt you, from the Spirit Realm or otherwise. And from this trust grows the seeds of all the trust you are capable of. You are never alone and always protected. And it lies within these moments when intimate communion, channeling, with the Spirit Realm truly begins, our soul opening to the knowledge of the Universe, the wisdom of all history, the thread of all life whose story is available to us and through which we have always been present. We begin to see glimmers of the Truth. God becomes real and inherent with each breath of this gift of life.

But, this does take time. And first the cold fear must be conquered, then the welcoming of your Angel, then the rest falls into place. The signs clearer and more frequent. The fear becoming a memory of who you were before you remembered universal love and the knowledge that we are all related and always have been.

During the days of discussion on Item 10, Economic, social and cultural rights and Item 11, Civil and political rights violations, there are more Spirits than usual as these are the themes where the most have been affected and where the most violence have been perpetrated. All human rights and the recognition of the inherent equality and dignity of human life are encapsulated in these two discussions, and as to be expected, they have the highest turnout of both Spirits and humans.

On Thursday, March 31, Economic, social and cultural rights were still under discussion and delegates of civil society and NGOs were presenting their interventions on this Item. Human rights violations of these rights were discussed in detail with regards to Pakistan, China, Sudan, Cuba, Chile, USA, India, Israel, Iraq, Australia, Japan, and theWestern Sahara were noted by various delegates. Extreme poverty, communicable diseases, the Millenium Development Goals, the right to education, colonial-style occupations of sovereign territories, homelessness, trafficking, globalization, starvation, and all issues relating to economic, social and cultural rights were touched upon. Oddly, the human rights of intravenous drug users was broached and seemed to be a contradiction as by being a drug user in general, one violates our own right to health and the enjoyment of our highest physical and mental health, no?

By Thursday afternoon, discussion on Item 10 was closed and Item 11, Civil and political rights, including the questions of: a) Torture and detention, b) Disappearances and summary executions, c) Freedom of expression, d) Independence of the judiciary, administration of justice, impunity, e) Religious intolerance, f) States of emergency, g) Conscientious objection to military service, was opened for discussion by the Commission. For such a strong item with probably among the worst cases of violations of human rights, the discussions opened very blandly and emptily.

(it’s the pressure of so much death

on my chest

can’t breathe

would like to die myself if it will make their pain stop

i sit in a room full of murderers

and their assistants in action or by silent complicity

don’t we have the Right to Truth

the Right to Know

who is speaking with blood on their hands

i saw the soul stain it left

on the desk, glowing violent

a bruise on the wood

growing with each lie

this contagious violence, albeit curable with love

the tragedy of lessons repeated

history repeating in murder

is it so hard to learn

and when will they understand

that it is easy to change when you decide

but easier still to cowardly live with lies than it is to forgive

to remain in the cycle of viciousness than it is to take first steps of peace

the truth being, once you begin, it is harder to stop

the same with loving or hating

i live and breathe

this violent contradiction

while drinking tears

for sustenance. )

Other than the cold weight of all the Spirits in the Room, there was no gravity of the severity of the violations inherent in Item 11 in any of the statements. And this continued until the closing of the session on Friday, April 1. A horrific silence in a chasm of darkness, like Hell lies below our feet with everything we would like to say but don’t, and our inability to challenge the liars in any significant manner. We speak of development and progress, but this is another lie. It is evident from our disintegrating humanity that we are in a process of de-evolution, we are going backwards from once upon a time living humanely and in harmony to this normalized violence, brutality, torture, and monstrousness. We have lost ourselves, we have forgotten our true hearts.

The Spirits watch on sadly. They do all that they can to help us see, but not enough humans are willing to change. They accept the fiction that humans are by their very nature violence. So they naturalize violent deaths, and are not bothered by human suffering, even when the blood so brightly stains their hands. The Spirits watch on sadly. I sit in the back and tearfully agree with them.

Here, from within my heart, I make a vow to shun all evil – to achieve the good. From deep within my heart I seek my refuge.

-The Buddha

In honour of all the spiritual warriors who came before,