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Tuesday, September 15, 2009


We have a tendency to overvalue words. We put so much time into producing them, as if they were the source of life itself. We believe that there are words and ways of using words that are inherent sources of oppression and spend vast amounts of time trying to suppress these words, impoverishing our language in the process. In the meantime, the real practices of oppression go on, often carefully using the correct words to hide the practical reality. At the same time, we think that if we find the right combination of words, this will spark rebellion. So we make flyer after flyer, zine after zine, blog after blog, with an evangelistic zeal, forgetting our own lives, our own desire for freedom, joy and the intensity of existence. By giving words such great value, we forget our own purpose in using them. They become our masters. This becomes evident in the attempt to evangelize, where our words become means for winning others over to a position, assuming that when enough people believe the right thing, they will rise up. But have those who rise up for words, and not for their lives, really risen up at all, or are they just embracing a new master? If my aim is to take back my life, to create my desire, my joy, my passion, then how can I turn my words into tools for a position? They would cease to be my own words. For me, words can only be a tool (or toy) for expressing and communicating my desire, my project, my life; one of the many tools I use to find accomplices, to create my enjoyment and to express the intensity of my passions, the wildness of my dreams. But disconnected from life, from practice, they are empty. And any word in the service of a cause, any evangelistic word, any word intended to draw followers to a position, has been disconnected from life, separated from the immediate practice of freedom, and so is empty. Thus, in overvaluing words, we drain them of meaning, because their meaning comes precisely from our lives and our choices.

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