Today is Friday, February 25, 2022. Early this morning I watched as CNN interviewed Petro Poroshenko, the former Ukrainian president, as he stood armed alongside about 300 of his compatriots. They were on the streets of the capital, Kyiv, while Russian forces were reportedly nearby in the Obolon District. He thanked the US and other countries for their support but asked for unified world support. He said Putin has declared war not just on Ukraine but on the whole world. “Putin is simply mad,” Poroshenko proclaimed. Pointing out a bomb shelter nearby, he declared he would not interrupt the interview with CNN because since the Russian info-war was ongoing, Poroshenko continued, “the world should know the truth. We are not standing in line for the bread or cash from the bank machine. We are standing in line for weapons, we are standing in line to give our blood to our soldiers.” CNN’s John Brennan then asked him, “How long do you think you can hold out?” Poroshenko paused, looked up and to his left then gave an answer that will go down in history. “Forever. Putin never will capture Ukraine, no matter how many soldiers he has, how many missiles he has, how many nuclear weapons he has . . . We Ukrainians are free people with a great European future.”
As the interview ended, I knew Poroshenko was speaking of and to deeper human traits and truths: our free will and our unique minds. His conclusions recognized the illusory nature of power and control. Poroshenko was not naively boasting about Ukrainian stamina or love of freedom. No doubt he knows the human mind can be swayed by fear, lies and promises. Fealty- or at least co-operation- is bought through such manipulations by bullies, fear mongers, power seekers, and other aggressors. Yet such purchases come at a high price: loss of personal freedom and/or extreme interest due after acquisition of TEMPORARY benefits. Those who seek power and control are never sated.
By our very human nature, people are susceptible to manipulation. But it is also our human nature which allows us to rely upon our intelligence and innate free will to expose those who wish to control and manipulate us! We know our thoughts, actions and reactions are ours alone. We each choose how to define the events and circumstances of our individual lives. We also choose how to act and react to those same events.
And yet . . . and yet. Somehow, we have a tendency to equate power and control with strength. This conception is only true in a narrow but personal sense. We each recognize the strength and power of being able to make our own choices and decisions; of being capable of directing our thoughts in directions beneficial to our lives; of our ability to learn anew and revisit previous beliefs and decisions. These are our most powerful tools as individual people. Trying to use these tools to manipulate another person interferes with that person’s own choices, their own free will. The need to do so exposes weakness of the manipulator, NOT STRENGTH!
Bullies. Aggressors. Fear mongers. Power seekers. All are the weakest members of our civilization. They are flawed human beings. They aspire to creating a world (or culture) which pleases only them, a world in which free will can only exist within him/ herself. Recognize them for what they are. If temporarily afflicted with seeing them as POWERFUL, remind yourself of the strength of your own free will.