Man's history - a lust for power, control and domination
Humans have a remarkable penchant to control, overpower and dominate
fellow humans. Institutional domination be it familial, communal or
group spills over to class, country and state domination where power is
used to control the weaker segment. Dissent then is anathema to those
that relish hegemonic control.
Within familial setting some children are labelled black sheep
arising out of what is called 'being stubborn' and at national level
when a community does not conform to majority will it is referred to as
'terrorists' or insurgents depending on ethnic affinity. For instance,
the JVP during their 'infamous' uprising were called 'insurgents' by
their communal kindred while the Tamils are recipient to labelling hard
blow - 'terrorists'. However, celebrities in minority groups are warmly
accommodated for their rather submissive and very yielding demeanour.
Socialization and acceptance of authority
The institutions of family, school and worship place followed by
workplace are primary and secondary territories of socialisation where
one learns authority acceptance - the very places that breed
differentiation yet are socially licensed as a 'God given' natural
system. Beyond such power enclaves are the international forces that
unite against morality and justice to efface non-conformists as was
evident in Saddam Hussein's existentialism. Masked as paragons of virtue
and Gods of righteousness the hegemonic collectivity sees
non-conformists as 'bad people' akin to families that see some children
as 'naughty' and the 'not listening type' with its parallel in school of
'bad children' and a mosque assembly labelling non-conformists as 'kafir'
and not of the flock.
Mediocre expressions such as "Oh! he is a good man. He goes to mosque
Oh! he is very obedient - a quiet nice, unassuming guy."
These societal expressions message the great distaste towards
dissent, opposition and non-conformity.
At home the parents wield authority, while at school the teacher
takes charge and flock control comes off the church, mosque or temple
priest and in office the boss insists on subordination. In all these
environs the tendency into gender, favouritism, and ideological brain
wash is widespread.
Objective of conformity
The insistence on conformity messages significantly the need to
maintain the system's operational smooth flow whatever be the 'success'
in implementation for which the state repressive forces are alerted.
Class stratification is springboard to crime.
Yet the robber is jailed and the crime breeding system allowed to
A country's attempts into control of minorities and in international
politics powerful states assembly for world control initiates
uncontrollable terror. Social stratification of class differentiation
and the line of command are noteworthy 'territories' where domination
and human indignity rates high.
As systems developed man's battle for power increasingly progressed
and held sway in all his activities. Civilizational growth became more
the story of scientific discoveries and industrial advance at the cost
of mind enhancement. It even reminded this writer of a recent radio
broadcast where an enlightened teacher - certainly a rarity today, noted
the futility of skills development arising off a spiritually untrained
mind. No wonder then today the loss of accountability, morality and
disregard for others. Skills development - a relative exercise displays
only product out put with the usage of hands and feet. But then what of
a well nourished mind?.
Thus much attempt into merely operationalising the system has been
today's achievement relegating the mind into an almost value free
Lust for power
Be it that infamous gold rush where the Americas as it was labelled
then was stormed by outsiders or the new inventions and discoveries
following 1453 after the fall of constantinople moving out from the so
called dark ages into a era of knowledge and scientific reasoning or the
setting up of the nation state, man's embittered story has been the lust
This then is not to disown power. Yet, when mismanaged and not
engineered towards equity, the recognition of human dignity and
dispensation of justice the results as we observe in contemporary
setting is sordid.
Exemplary characters in power
Significantly in local setting the late DVJP leader Nihal Perera's
exemplary character into equity dispensation and recognition of human
dignity is worth recalling.
He was Head of State Graphite Corporation when the miners went on
strike. Nihal Perera much to everyone's dismay joined the strikers in
winning their demands. Asked why he did so for it was considered
'beneath an executive's dignity' to join a workers' strike he said, "Of
what use is my post if I continue to watch them suffer?"
Even as Head of BOC he never ever waited for the peon to open the
car's door on his arrival in office.
Nobel Peace Prize Laurette Muhammed Yunus in his innovative pro-poor
banking concept deviated from the conventional form of funds
disbursement only for the rich and strove towards social equity, social
justice and the worth of human dignity. Reportedly his prize winning
finances will also be directed towards uplifting the poor.
Power then is certainly not a bad idea when well directed. The role
that the rich countries could play in social levelling and development
goes without saying.
The informal trading practices that push the third world into greater
penury, this part of the world itself being dumping ground of first
world substandard goods, the large scale manufacturing of arms, a
heavily gendered social layout, patriarchal leanings, social
stratification and divides - all uphold the current unjust political
A reaching out to good sense on the part of powers that be would
certainly move the present chaotic world order into a more positive