On elites and elitism
On elites and elitism
I remember watching a documentary about the Armenian genocide, where the Turkish army slaughtered thousands or Armenians.
The sentence that stuck in my mind was : “The entire elite of the Armenian youth was shot down in a day”
As I heard these words, a though went through my mind was : “Thank God I am not the elite”.
It could be seen as cowardice, and as a little bullied teenager it was understandable.
But it was much more than that.
I remember late walking through the halls of an American university, seeing posters calling up “leaders” and how : YOU ARE THE LEADERS.
The world leader was written everywhere.
Something felt off about it.
Again, it could be my unwillingness to accept responsibility as a 20 something. But it was more than that.
My mind goes to a small passage street in my hometown, where a plaque is set. Commemorating the group of youths who burned down two cars, as the Nazis entered Maribor, to take over Slovenia, sending just about anyone and everyone who would resist to the concentration camps.
It was an act of defiance by some hot headed youths. And as far as I know, there were captured, tortured and killed.
And they knew what would come to them, as they decided for the act.
Was it heroism or madness?
Depends who you ask.
Similar ideas went through my mind as I was walking the streets of Dundalk on the border on northern Ireland.
When someone comes in your living room and threat hens to kill or hurt your loved ones....
you can turn into a monster, to stop the monsters at your door.
It is not a pretty sight, and it is not something I would encourage.
But when it happens, there is not really much choice.
It is instinctual.
So what was it about the elites?
In my own (ancient) Slavic culture, elite was traditionally not separated from the society.
Yes there were kings and royalty (knezi), but they were chosen by the people and were more or less servants of the people.
And power was not exercised in a direct top down approach..
It was done smoothly, horizontally and democratically.
Like the black guard (črna vahta), the ancient secret protectors of the old believers, who were called in when innocent people were threatened by the so called catholic religion dignitaries.
It was the power of nature, and it was not something done lightly, but when it was needed.
It was simply done.
I am writing all of this probably in full awareness of the fascist takeover that is taking part in my country as a write this.
I am wondering how it came to this, and what must have done wrong for us to to come so far?
I can try to explain it away with history, karma, sociology, covid or whatnot.
But it really explains nothing.
What can we do so we can do the right thing without causing more suffering?
Now that is a question that befits a kings or a wise old wizard.
Which is what the elites traditionally have always been, or should have been.
And what the current ones are simply
I pray we find the wisdom, strength, perseverance and cunning, to make sure as little damage as possible is caused as we try to fix the damage that has already been done.
And I think it is time to slowly visit the holy city once again and sit with all my brothers and sister,s who are my greatest teachers, and have went through hell and back in the last decades.
They are the true silent, humble shining ones, and maybe they would know what to do
Will you join me?
With love and respect