Iran and Islam : In the Matrix
(image - Gallo Getty)
The growing reformist movement in Iran has taken the world by surprise. The movement and the mullahs response to it is very fluid and evolving rapidly. Professor Mark Levine writing about Iran on the Brink makes crucial points:
“It seems that the Iranian elite has been caught similarly off-guard, and is still trying to read its own society to understand how broad is the societal discontent reflected in the mass protests. This calculus is crucial - in some ways more so than whether the results are legitimate or, as some claim, electoral fraud.
It will determine whether the Iranian power elite - that is, the political-religious-military-security leadership who control the levers of state violence - moves towards negotiation and reconciliation between the increasingly distant sides, or moves to crush the mounting opposition with large-scale violence.
The religious establishment is itself split into hard-line, moderate and more progressive factions, each of whose members are tied to factions within the economic, political and security elite, producing a complex and potentially volatile set of competing and contradictory loyalties and interests.
Ahmadinejad's and Khamenei's decisions in the coming days will be telling. If the official tally was in fact broadly accurate, then they will likely be more willing to agree not just to a recount, but even to a run-off election, if that is what it takes to pacify the angry protesters”.
In a piece published in response to the events of 9/11 titled Melting Away the Matrix; Modernity, Terrorism and US Professor Levine passionately articulates his perspective of a desperate need for humanity to recognize and dismantle the “Modernity Matrix”.
Today we are all stand in judgment–not just the West, but the Rest too. Arguing that globalization has tied us together inextricably has become banal, but the events of this week bring home how much it has penetrated the imagined communities of race, class and nation. Unfortunately, not just Western policies or mainstream media coverage of the slaughter of 9/11, but also much of the critical writing on these issues has left unanswered the urgent questions of how to build alternatives to the status quo of occupation and autocracy in the Middle East, US hegemony in the world at large, and the widening cycles of violence they perpetuate.
To do so we all need dig beyond the easy symbolism of "freedom," "democracy," "Zionism=racism," and other mantras and challenge a matrix of discourses–modernity, colonialism, capitalism and nationalism; what I call the "modernity matrix"–that are each based on the creation of zero-sum oppositions between (individual or collective) Selves and Others, us and them, and which together have supported a five-hundred year old world system that supports slavery in the Sudan and Mauritania and IMF bailouts, organized terrorism and "le peuple du Seattle" alike.
Like its cinematic counterpart, the modernity matrix has for hundreds of years both determined our social existence and sugar-coated the oppressive, exclusivist and segregated reality underneath the glossy propaganda of markets, democratic capitalism, development, and freedom. But unlike the movie, there is no "one" who can lead us out of our dark age; the task is our collective responsibility.
There is much in his logic I agree with however I have a differing perspective on the nature, scope and source of the world system he recognizes. I further believe humanity is totally incapable of extricating itself from the grip of this “system” whose origins and source of power operate in various dimensions or realms, being spiritual in nature. In short humans are caught in an epoch and universal struggle that has engulfed earth.
We have been given volition and can choose, individually or collectively, to resist this “system”. Being born in this matrix was not our choice, being of it and owned by it is optional. Through disciplines of logic and meditational prayer, the truths of Biblical teaching shine ancient light desperately needed in our confused “modern” era. Pray for Peace...
Fearful rulers attempt to control with Fear…
Faith is the antithesis to Fear
Faith is only as strong as the object of the faith
Truth is powerful-lies are as quicksand…
The degree of deceit illustrates depth of depravity…
Is Iran being Crucified?
Crucifixion of Iran:
Melting the Matrix: