Category Archives: Violence

Looking under Rocks

[an essay from   ~burning woman~  by Sha’Tara]

What would happen to society if no one except of course politicians, experts, billionaires, media talking heads and entertainers or actors, ever questioned the status quo? If no one ever “looked under rocks” as I read from one commenter – I think it was Hyperion – on one of my blog posts.

You look over a field in the hot sun with scattered rocks, or hey, cow pies(!) and you see nothing moving, nothing happening, except perhaps some flying insects. But if you’re a farm kid full of curiosity as I was about a thousand years ago, you turn over the rocks or cow pies and crouching there you see a life you didn’t suspect existed. You enter into a different and fascinating world.

What happens if you never stop turning over rocks and cow pies? That’s easy: you become a conspiracy theorist. You see aspects of your world no one else knows or wants to know. That makes you dangerous to the System first of all but also to the believers. It upsets things.

If you’re in church and the preacher says something you know is a lie and you interrupt the man to correct him, you may as well pack your bags: you’re outta there unless you put yourself under discipline of “the elders” and repent. The Preacher is the defender of the status quo and everyone in the auditorium is one of his body guards. No dissension allowed in the ranks. The Preacher cannot lie.  Well, guess what, this civilization is the church and dissenters are being increasingly marginalized. Ask yourself “why?”

Before we were labeled conspiracy theorists we were called rebels. We were those who rebelled against an authority we could no longer endure. We said… “Hell no, we won’t go!” and eventually we stopped one of this world’s grossest, most abusive, murderous and unjustifiable wars.

Without these very powerful protests how long would capitalism’s war against the people of Vietnam have gone on? If, instead of pulling away we had wholeheartedly supported the war criminals by giving them fresh bodies to throw into the fields and swamps; to cause mayhem; to use flamethrowers and Napalm against helpless women and children?

But who wants to be remembered of that now? Poisoned waters under collapsing civilization bridges! We’ve done worse, much worse, since Vietnam so let’s remind ourselves to be proud, very, very proud of the millions of innocents our acquiescence has exterminated as if they meant absolutely nothing.

Today I live in a society of dummied down sheep. The government says not to turn over any rocks, there’s great danger under there. People acquiesce instantly and happily convince themselves that it’s OK not to question dictates that come from “the leadership” – in the current case it’s mostly from medical dictators. But they can’t be wrong, they’re wearing WHITE lab coats. Why white, by the way? Because, well, white is pure and holy, black is dirty or evil. God is white, Satan is black. How could any one doubt who’s telling the truth?

Does it matter if it’s a Doctor Mengele* in the white lab coat? Not in today’s world. Can anyone question a doctor Mengele’s agenda in today’s society? Sorry, no. That would be engaging in a conspiracy and such people are dangerous traitors to the human race. Better the evil you know, or think you know, than the evil that lurks in conspiring minds.

…and that is how this current society of sheep has thrown away any right it may have had once upon a time to claiming it lived in certain democracies which not incidentally guaranteed freedom of speech and certainly freedom to express thoughts not garnered directly from the poisonous lies of bought-and-paid-for medical “experts”, equally corrupt politicians, billionaire ghouls looking to make their next quick billions and their lapdog mainstream media.

Do I sound angry? Yes? Good. But I’m not angry at the obvious evil doers, I’m angry at the fear-driven submissive collaborators who make their evil possible. I’m angry at the mind slaves who believe that by submitting they will save their own hides.

*Josef Mengele, also known as the Angel of Death and the White Angel, was a German Schutzstaffel officer and physician during World War II. He is mainly remembered for his actions at the Auschwitz concentration camp, where he performed deadly experiments on prisoners and was a member of the team of doctors who selected victims to be killed in the gas chambers. Wikipedia

 

Antierra Manifesto – blog post #96

You may wonder why they did not just back out of the event?  They can’t.  Once the bets begin to go in and are registered, no challenger can change his mind.  Since a fight depends entirely on the bets made on it, challengers are forced to declare their intentions long before the actual match is scheduled and set.  Bit of a catch-22 for the drooks.  But that does not help us much.  They know our weaknesses.  Mine is age.  That’s what they bet on, that I won’t be able to endure a sustained bout.  I shouldn’t be except for two things: my desire to see things to their end, and the amazing Cedric.

End blog post #95
—————————-
Start blog post #96

Chapter 38 – One Woman Fights two Drooks – more Teaching

It’s still dark when I’m taken from my cage and given the ritual treatment with the cold water.  Only at this time of year it is actually pleasant.  The water has not had time to cool much and it feels good to stand in the trough and spray it on myself.  My trainers join in and splash me, a rare bit of tomfoolery between men and women.  But in the faint light and this early no one is watching.  My fighter breakfast is brought by, surprise, Tieka.  She smiles at me just as Deirdre and Tiki used to.  She has the same moves and slowly drags her head on my shoulder, letting her fingers move along my back while hiding her hand from the trainers.  I don’t think they’d mind but this girl knows the score and takes no chances.  She doesn’t want any confrontation.  Wise one.  Except for the falling in love.  But even I fell into that once. 

The food is good.  I made sure the kitchen knew I cannot abide chakr.  How I miss Deirdre’s stim these days!  Even if they still had some at Doc Balomo’s place, I cannot access it and it appears the Cydroids have other matters to attend to.  I’d hoped the kitchen Cydroid would remember the stim but none, so far.  Tieka returns with more of the same concoction and while pouring some in my bowl, she grunts, pressing her left hand against my throat.  I reach up and she drops a cube in it.  Stim!  I squeeze her hand in thanks, let her go and finish the food.  Was that a break?  Did I make that happen like so many other seemingly insignificant things over the years?  Matters not, I’ve got the stim.  I ease it safely inside the little nest of shaggy hair I keep over my left ear and signal to the trainers I am ready to go.

Do I give you a play-by-play description of another arena battle?  Why not.  Just skip this part if it bores you. 

Realize though, before you skip, that for those of us who actually do the fighting there is nothing ‘boring’ in the act.  Each time we must kill or be killed.  Each time.  Only twice do I remember mercy being asked for by a challenger and granted by the crowd, through me.  Twice in how many bouts for me alone?  Averaging two per week with our year of 48 weeks over a period of eleven years now, that would be two who lived with over one thousand killed.  Did I not say this is a world at war with itself?  How many other arenas, combat rings and unofficial fighter compounds operate all over this world?  No one could even guess.  No one even knows what the population of this world is except perhaps on Albaral.  Keep in mind that for every male killed, you can easily triple the number for females and children.

So you see, it’s not an academic exercise.  These are real people, real blood, real deaths.  But that brings something to mind I should make you aware of since you will be reading this long into my past, some of you likely still living on Túat Har or ‘Old Earth’ circa C-21. 

At this time your death toll from victims of your own ‘Powers’ number around 30,000 each day of your year of 365 days according to your UNESCO statistics.  It’s probably much higher than that but that alone adds up to ten million nine hundred fifty thousand innocent victims you allow to die each year of preventable causes and most of you are completely unaware of this horror, or care little.  At this time your Earth has a population of close to 8 billion and you boast a marvellous computerized technology and an expanding “economy”  throughout most of your nations.  So you Earthians deliberately murder eleven million innocents each year as an offering to your technocracy and financial interests. 

Will you still judge the ways of this world I’m on?  That may be an unwise choice for by focusing on T’Sing Tarleyn’s obvious immorality you may be blinded to your own.  I would tread gently here.  And please don’t get angry at me for speaking bluntly.  I am first of all a messenger but I’ve been a victim enough times to know what that means; to know how to identify with it; to incarnate it yet find ways to defeat it also.  I offer you that way from here.  My hand may be callused, gnarled and bloody but my grip is firm, my voice is true.  As your song says,

Hear my words that I might teach you,
Take my arms that I might reach you…[1]

I have been on your Earth many times and I have deep roots there.  Never mind that I already ‘know’ your future.  You can change any of it you choose just as I am changing the face of Malefactus.  In fact Earth and Malefactus are linked in this death struggle.  If you do not change, I will not succeed.  If I do not succeed neither will you.  Refuse to believe and nothing at all changes.  That is the Mystery we are bound to as ISSA beings throughout these stack worlds.

So I would teach you and reach for you from hundreds of years in your future and from another dimension.  To you I am both the voice of the damned and the voice of angels.  The voice of despair and of hope.  You have the choice of either, not both.  Now while I hope you forgive me for this tutorial and ‘historical’ outburst, I relate another fight, the non-philosophical side of my current incarnation.

Though it is early the stands are full and the crowd is yet silent.  Most are munching on various concoctions that pass for food, for breakfast.  Blood and gore does not affect these people’s appetite in the least.  This is a sport, nothing more.  Although most of them hope to see the female killed and cut into pieces as some challengers will do for their fans, it is the money that talks the loudest.  These people have money, they are not riff-raff from the lower streets.  They are here for two reasons: make money and be entertained.  So this is it.  Apart from medieval type magic shows and circus acts (minus animals) there is no entertainment media as such on Malefactus.  There is no written language except for the functionaries and upper aristocracy and probably most members of the Inner Court and higher Councils.  That is of course debatable – they probably use human ‘processors’ to record their votes and speeches, or computers such as the datacoms linked to main terminals.  Best guess.

I stand at the fighter entrance to await a signal to walk in, take my weapons, strap on the dagger belt and walk to the centre.  Rapier and dagger fights are done naked as already indicated, so no need to worry about armour and just as well as even this early it promises to be another scorcher day.  The sky is stark blue again, not a sign of sand or haze in it.  I consider myself lucky to have become a tough bone rack in my ‘old’ age.  Less to melt in the sun.  I’m like those burros of Old Earth – tough and practically indefatigable.  A donkey, that’s me when I’m not being a mule.  Oh well, this world needs an animal presence.  I will humour its needs…

Finally the challengers enter from the opposite end.  They salute the crowd and pandemonium begins.  They perform an artistic strip show for the male crowd, waving their erections to the stands, measuring their respective lengths with their fingers and fondling their genitals.  This may shock your Earthian sensibilities but here it’s considered a sign of strength and virility.  A man gets it up and keeps it up as long as he can during a fight.  He must demonstrate he’s got balls.  After all, look at the bravery extolled here:  two trained males against one female, no wonder they are admired.  Such heroism.

That little performance is a bonus for the smart fighter.  That little head makes a tempting target which is often the challenger’s demise.  It’s always one of the places I aim for.  Certainly it will be today because I need to disable one of those drooks before I get bled too seriously.  I may be tough but I bleed too and I don’t have a lot of extra to water the sands of Malefactus at this point.  Oh, and in exchange they’ll be aiming for my breasts.  Many fighters lose nipples and breasts in their fights, not to mention ears, nose, fingers.  Anything a blade can most easily shear off is a target.  Good management or luck, I consider it a miracle I still have both ears, my nose, by breasts and nipples and nine fingers.  A middle finger was sheared off years ago in a staff fight.

The first trumpet sounds.  We take our weapons, strap our belts and make the first salute.  Another trumpet and we centre with the last salute to the crowd.  I silence their usual demonstration of hate for the female fighter and instead absorb their exhortations to their male heroes.  Long ago I learned that little trick, just that little extra I can put into my blades.  Like getting that last few seconds of charge into a battery. 

We wait.  I bow while they eye me openly, trying to gauge my body, my most likely opening moves.  I’m after all the undefeated Desert Beast with an impressive record of kills.  They know not to take anything for granted.  Plus in their stupidity they forfeited their right to see me handle the rapier.  Second advantage goes to me; they already have first: two against one.  A set of drums roll and echoes across the keep and a score of trumpets blare the start of the game.

End blog post #96

[1]  Excerpt from ‘The Sound of Silence’ by Simon and Garfunkel

 

Why can’t Man live in Peace?

[Thoughts from the mind of  ~burning woman~ ]

          Certainly, a question that’s been asked millions of times throughout history, in every part of this world. This topic should be utterly exhausted by now; nothing new to be added.  All the answers should be there, for all to see, as plain as plain can be.  But each time someone proposes an answer to the question, the question turns into a riddle that no one can answer.

          Does “man” enjoy the violence of war?  Yes, of course, even when hating the pain it inflicts upon himself and loved ones: a conundrum. Does man enjoy inflicting pain on others, and does it give him a satisfaction that goes even deeper than his sexual experiences?  Yes he does and yes it does. 

          Some blame religion for this and in a shallow sort of way of looking at history that is not so farfetched, even if that does not constitute an answer.  Some, having “rejected” religion claim that these unsavory aspects of “man” are all part of natural evolution; that the same can be found in all of nature.  Again, in a shallow sort of way; in skewed conclusions from a cursory look at “nature” one could derive such a thought, even if that too fails utterly to constitute an answer.

          Sometimes, in the night, in the depths of my infinite mind, I imagine a world without conflict of any sort.  No saved or damned; no chosen or rejected; no surviving fittest at the expense of the less fit.  In other words, a normal world not driven by bad religion, bad science and bad history.  What’s “missing” in that world?  It appears to be fear.  A normal world would not know fear.  There would be no danger from anything or anyone.  Each interacts normally with the other without demands; without pressure; without expectations. 

          What is the love of violence but a knee-jerk reaction to ever-present fear?  If you live in fear of being attacked, raped, plundered and killed, what is more “natural” than to take the initiative and live in ways to prevent this violence from catching you unawares?  Our current condition demonstrates that victims are those who live innocently; who trust “the system” to protect them; who are too foolish to protect themselves or have been pushed into a hopeless “lose-lose” situation, socially and economically.  Society’s victims are its fringe dwellers; its weakest members. 

Therefore, in this scenario, society is the predator.

          Define society?  Collectives of those who hold sway with power, be this religious, political or financial.  Those who “employ, print the money and make the rules thus empowering themselves to impose their desires and whims upon the rest.  Those who have no intention to ever share that power with the rank and file members.  That is society; that is man’s number one predator.  Then of course there is also the bully, and the mob from whom come abuse, rape, lynching and genocide.

          Back to the “legalized aspect. Since the beginning of imposed laws, we have had a serious problem: laws are invented to create fear and confusion; to disempower; to create a growing number of fringe-dwelling victims of society while promoted as necessary to maintain societal order or peace.  Laws create both, expectations from the law-makers they have no intentions of meeting, and fear for those who do not understand the laws, or simply cannot meet the requirements of those laws – because, again, laws are made by the predators to be foisted upon the prey. Simply put, laws are enacted by the elites and the elites are man’s number one predator.

          Through a legalistic process, “man” is brainwashed into institutional violence; forced to take sides when there really are no sides, just illusions created by the power-holders.  Man is endlessly pitted against himself by his power Matrix; an invisible and denied force that creates the sociopathic gods of religion; the corruption of politics and the increasingly unbearable life-stealing choke-hold of the global banking cabal aided and abetted by the military-industrial monster. 

          To “escape” this pressure man readily plunges into wanton violence.  Tell him he’s being threatened by a terrorist group and he will immediately react to the “news” emotionally.  He will feel an instant need to defend and avenge himself.  He will seek an outlet for his fear and he will find one, or the Matrix will open one for him through some psy-op; it will offer him a scapegoat individual or group to demonize or it will give him a “new” war that will require no justification beyond the state and corporate propaganda. 

Nothing new so far.

          But the question will not be answered in more bloodshed; in more imposition of power by the haves over the have-nots or vice-versa in a violent revolution. That sort of thinking has brought us to a state of permanent war and permanent fear of a sudden, accidental or deliberate state of nuclear aggression. Most may believe that they are not affected by the depredations of the power-movers but how little they know of the subconscious and what it can do to the body and the mind. This is not something that “free” health care, vaccinations or over-the-counter pill hand out can cure.  Man’s condition which I refer to as “condition red” is either going to be addressed squarely by individual man or it is going to bring man to extinction and not in a gentle good night either. 

         I know that man can live in peace. For me, that is not the question. The question is, how can man ever come to realize how much of a slave he is to his manifold systems, collectives, groups, institutions and invented divinities? Obviously not with any method that replaces one such entity with another, even if thought to be new. Certainly we’ve been there, done that and can all agree it has backfired in the worst of ways. So what then?

          Imagine being struck violently across the face with the obvious! Imagine the reaction to such an event! Who can argue against the obvious? Who can fight the Matrix with its imposed puppet leaders and their ever-present endless barrage of lies? 

          What’s this “obvious” that has such power? Ah, well, obviously the obvious is obvious.  That’s the first clue to grasping some understanding of it. It isn’t based on questionable theories or on carefully crafted institutional lies. That’s obvious. 

          The obvious doesn’t exist institutionally. It doesn’t show up in groups and collectives. It doesn’t empower mobs, churches, political executives or boards of directors. No, not even in marriages or between lovers.  No obvious to be found in any of those.

          Which leaves but one place where the obvious can be found and can clarify everything: the individual mind.  Interestingly, however that’s been denied to man since “the beginning” (whatever that entails). Surprise, surprise: every person has a mind; a totally individual mind that needs no connection to any kind of institutional complex to function properly and to develop ad-infinitum.  What a surprise, to discover that “man” is after all nothing less than an individual with an individual mind.  That “man” is not a creature belonging to some god, or an adjunct of some institution, or mob.  That “man” can think for himself; can choose, can decide, can take full responsibility for his own passage through life and can evolve himself as much as he wants to and absolutely nothing can stand in his way – no promise of heaven, no threat of hell and no fear of anything or anyone. 

          And that’s the obvious. Catch that, O man, and discover that you can live in peace; that you need not be a predator; that you are not a meaningless mote in a hodge-podge of neo-Darwinist evolutionary theories or a helpless victim of some super-power invisible sky wizard. Just remember the obvious… before taking the next independent step towards becoming human, the maker of peace.

 

Antierra Manifesto-blog post #95

NOTE: I have been truly derelict in posting segments of the Manifesto this month. So much happening and so much to talk about, and one has to wonder, in retrospect, what all that talk accomplishes. But be that as it may be, I intend to be much more disciplined in posting the rest of this story. I’ll give it 3-4 days in between each post, no more. So here goes with blog post 95. I hope you can re-connect with what was going on. Thanks!]

“Now hold your weapons high and salute life.  Salute victory.  Salute the goddess who slowly awakens to you as you awaken to her.  Our days are coming, as surely as the seasons change.  Hail to the weapons!”

Each time we go through this ritual the women barely restrain themselves from cheering.  These are the moments that inexorably change the face of Malefactus. 

End blog post #94
______________________
Begin blog post #95

I am beginning to sense what the Teaching is accomplishing.  Without making any significant change to the external conditions of things here, since we do not have the power to do so, and if we attempted it the suffering would bring unimaginable terror upon us all, it is causing changes within.  It is making these helpless individuals aware there are some forms of power no amount of repression can take away.  Repression has its limits whereas personal power does not know the meaning of limit!  

What are Avatari Teachings but methods to make an individual mind aware of this power within itself?  They are that which defines us, as individual ISSA beings, and collectively as humans.  What the Melkiars attempted to do; what they may well be involved in doing here, the force of mind-life is always stronger, always survives and eventually always overcomes. The Teaching does not have to be pure, complete, ‘right’ or perfect.  It is a can opener, a ram, a hammer, a simple ice pick, a fly in the ointment; “un sabot dans l’engrenage,” anything that breaks the carapace of an oppressive force and drains it of power so life can express itself again, however much it may have changed in nature during the times of oppression.   What these women are feeling; what they want to cheer to, is the latent force that oppression has so tightly bottled inside their minds with the power of fear.  And this I now demonstrate for them.

Again, using a low voice pitched for us alone, I call their attention before we begin our training for the day.  “Now listen to this again and learn it, it is a powerful magic force hidden in words.  The following words change life:

I will not fear. Fear is the mind killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration.  I will face my fear. I will let it pass over me and through me. When it has gone, I will look with the inner eye at its passage and nothing will remain.  Only I will be standing there.”[1]

“I will continue to repeat those words to you as often as you need to hear them to learn, know and understand their meaning.  The way men control you here is through fear.  The way they are controlled is also through fear.  Men do not own the power they use.  It is given to them only to hurt us.  They fear if they stop hurting women they will lose that power.  So we all need to kill the fear that feeds the power.  That is much harder to do than fight in the arena.  Fear is our greatest challenger and we must all defeat it, leave it dead in the sand until there is no longer any blood flowing into that sand, understand? 

All the Teaching does is create the individual weapon a woman uses to kill fear.  When the fear is gone, the woman will experience no more suffering, even in pain.  Remember this, fighters of the goddess:  the fear you fight, it is not your fear.  It is your challenger; your enemy.  Fear is that which hurts you before you are actually hurt.  It seeks to kill you by disempowering you.  You defeat it by facing it and letting it pass through you so you can see what lies behind it; what it is hiding.  Always fear hides the power that can defeat it.  Fear drags its own defeat, always.  Let the first wave of hurt pass so you may see you have not been hurt.  Then the physical aspect of pain is of little consequence.”

I repeat the mantra for them, explaining the word ‘obliteration’ which they fail to grasp at first.  They are quick to understand because all of us know fear everyday.

“If we banish fear from our lives, who can hurt us before they hurt us?  Our disempowerment does not come from the physical mistreatment we must endure and eventually succumb to, but from our fear of such treatment; from the fear of what they can do to those we love.  Do you think they give us lovers because the care about us?  No!  They give us lovers so they can frighten us, cause us to snitch on one-another and do many servile things so our lover isn’t hurt.  Is that not so?”  There is much agreement and awakening to this truth. 

I have decided not to use their pidgin in some cases when applying the Teaching.  Force them to listen to new words and insert them in their vocabulary.  Add to their sense of self-esteem.  I know they hate sex-slaves because many have better education.  Perhaps if they feel they can speak as well, there will be less hate, greater acceptance?

It’s back to our training and the difference is palpable.  A victory of sorts was scored here today.  A victory over collective darkness.  Now back to some personal details involving promises of help.

I work my way to the one I nickname Zel, Huntu’s lover.  She knows I want to talk to her and switches position, still working her long sword without missing a beat.  Finally we face each other and I signal a pretend point jab where she scores a hit and gets to stand over me as I kneel on the stones.  I say to her,

“I call you ‘Zel’ so keep secret name.  You, Tieka, have plan yet?”

“No sir, cannot make.  Not know how.  Need to run away but many troubles.  Gates, doors, alarms.  Guards with guns.  With carriages.  What we do?”

“Nothing I know now.  Plan.  Think.  Think, not how to escape.  Think what you do when in desert far away.  No food.  No water.  No shelter from sand storm or hiding from evil eye.  No man to give drink, food, care.  How you survive, huh?  Think that.  Maybe other problems not so big, eh?  Think power, Zel.  Think love for man.  That be miracle already.  That already be escape from hate.  Understand?  Already I speak to Hudu and Huntu.  They thinking too.  Find escape plan.”

“Yes sir.  Understand.  Thank you.”  

The day does get oppressively hot again but no breaks are called.  We fight fiercely in sweat and dust, drinking tepid water to stay on our feet.  Guards, handlers and trainers drink cool home-made brew in the shade under awnings and ogle us.  Today they are not keen on taking the young ones to rape in their huts.  I see the overseer cabin is open and empty.  No one has replaced Achnarr yet.  I’m sure the judge I spoke to yesterday will see to it that the next overseer is a stickler for rules.  That will make the men tense and angry.  They will be more inclined to find fault and to carry out ‘official’ punishments.  It will be more difficult to curry favours with any of them.  Hudu and Huntu sit together at a small trainer table and watch Zel go through her routines.  I assume Tieka is working in the kitchens. 

I feel it before I can turn to look.  A woman has fallen down from heat stroke.  Fortunately for us, Hudu jumps quickly to be the one to investigate.  As he approaches, two women have revived the other and she is sitting, then with surreptitious help manages to stand, leaning on a staff she was quietly handed.  Hudu goes through the motion of warning us about slacking off. 

“Know rules: anyone falls, stays down, flogged.  Good for nothing goras!  Cannot stand little heat?  How stand fight in arena?  Lazy!  Lazy!  Now continue training, now!”  He yells but wants us to know his heart is not in it.  It does save the girl’s life though.  She recovers enough to walk to the water trough with two others who throw water on her and help her drink.  Then she goes back to the training, her partner taking care not to force her to move fast.  It’s ridiculous to keep us in the heat and cause heat stroke.  This doesn’t make us tougher or better at fighting, just weaker.  We need food and shade.  I signal for attention and motion for a general subtle slow down of movement to save our strength.  In the heat waves it’s unlikely the men will notice our subterfuge.

And that is the thing about becoming a real leader.  From the ordinary you make it appear as if you create the extraordinary.  You make ‘stuff’ happen because you care.  You forget yourself in the drama and crises around you and incarnate it all.  Of necessity.  You don’t resent any of it.  You just do it.  Sometimes I feel I’ve been graduated to that rather unenviable position. 

True to his word, judge Algomo rescheduled the fight and as he warned, he was unable to rescind the plan to have me fight two trained challengers.  The two men choose late afternoon to come and let me see their choice of weapon.  They deliberate, then ask a handler if they could watch me work with each one.  It’s late, I’m tired and the heat is beyond oppressive now.  Would I get a reprieve from the handlers?

“Slave, you show challenger skill in weapons.  Start with staff.”  So much for that.  A male trainer is assigned to be my sparring partner.  If I play dumb this time, I’ll get thrashed.  So I must ‘demonstrate’ my abilities on the poor trainer.  He’s good but not in league with bionic implants.  I lay the staff on him twice and he quits.  I guess they won’t choose the staff now.  Another trainer is sent forth for the sword routine.  The sweat is pouring off him and no wonder.  There he sat, through the heat of the day, drinking cooled beverages and in the shade while I was in the sun and by now my bony frame is practically dry of sweat, just covered with dust streaks.  I fear he’ll drop from heat stroke himself before I can lay a hand on him.

He takes his stance and does his best, I’ll grant him that.  A few well-chosen thrusts and while he parries one I lay into him and drop him with a hilt blow to the shoulder.  I put my foot on his belly and lift my sword.  It’s comical to see the look on their faces when I do that.  He cannot know I won’t follow through.  What if I’m dikfol?  There’s real terror there.  My challengers are frowning.  Good.  Got them a bit confused as to their choice.  I lift my foot from the trainer’s belly and help him up, patting him on the back as he turns to leave, adding insult to injury but this one had it coming.  He mistreats the young ones. 

The sword still lies on the stones.  In a moment of stupid bravado, I pick it up, walk within two meters of the challengers and offer either of them the sword.

Any other slave had done that she would have been instantly dragged to the flogging post by handlers.  But I know their thinking, and their limits.  They’ve got money riding on me and the more I intimidate the challengers, the greater the chance they’ll lose.  Also, I’m running out of time and they know this.  The day of their retribution will come.  I cannot win, according to their view.  I can never win.

The challengers at first look nonplussed by my offer.  Then they gather their thoughts and sneer, turning to the handlers and motioning for them to set me straight.  The handlers don’t care, just snort and laugh.  We have to settle it then.  I pull the sword back, turn submissively and return to the rack where I file both weapons and take out two axes.  I wait where I am supposed to stand, one axe in hand, the other’s pointed handle set in a crack between the pavers.  Finally another trainer reluctantly takes his position.  He has put on the required armour and looks as miserable as anyone can.  I remain naked, not having enough strength left to handle both the axe and the weight and friction heat of the cheelth skin.  In the last four years they haven’t had a trainer who could come even close to matching my strokes and they all know it.  I’m not worried on that score.  I recognize the trainer as he moves close to me before he picks up the axe to ask in low tones,

“Please no hurt, I not hate you.  Only do what must, see?  Make you look good, I do, then let me go?”

“I no hurt you Tarnat.  You good man.  We fight fake, I win, go back to shade.  Now loud, you curse me.  Look angry.  Fight crazy Desert Beast.  Be brave.”

Always the necessity to make those men look good in their peers’ eyes.  He curses me loudly, spits, yells ‘krosspeeg’ and attacks.  I take several steps back deliberately for our little play, parry each stroke, then go on the attack in turn.  Several swings, neither intended to connect fly around cleverly.  Finally he lays the side of his axe against my side.  I flinch and go to one knee.  He charges and I throw him off balance with a hook in his armour skirt, spinning him and laying him flat down.  I throw my right foot on his chest, raise my axe… then lower it.  I move off him and offer to help him up.  He refuses, stands up, throws the axe apparently in disgust and walks away.  There’s one relieved trainer.

I have to rack the weapons again.  I take the last in the acceptable series.  Rapier and dagger combination.  I put on my belt with the dagger and again I wait.  But the challengers have seen enough.  They choose the one weapon they have not seen me handle.  Perhaps they want to keep an illusion that in a two on one competition four blades to my two is a greater advantage.  I’ll grant them that: it is.  A wise choice, not so good for me.  I wonder if the Cedric is available tomorrow and if I have a date? 

That’s no way to think, girl.  You can beat those anal-retentive drooks.  After all, it is the drooks who more often than not refuse to acknowledge our superior speed and skill with any type of weapon cleared for use in the arena.  They are the ones who are the most likely to sneer when our skills are mentioned.  However many we kill, they keep coming.  And why not?  Over all they do kill more women than we get of them simply because in fixed fights, as most of their fights are,  they get the young or the weaker ones.  Some of these drooks take months to investigate a group of fighters and pick the ones they will fight.  Of course the law as written does not allow challengers to choose their fighters, only the Fighter Council judges can do that.  But then laws are made to be broken and law enforcers are equally made to be bought.  All a part of the game.  Had Achnarr been in charge the game would have gone much more in their favour and that’s what they had counted on.

You may wonder why they did not just back out of the event?  They can’t.  Once the bets begin to go in and are registered, no challenger can change his mind.  Since a fight depends entirely on the bets made on it, challengers are forced to declare their intentions long before the actual match is scheduled and set.  Bit of a catch-22 for the drooks.  But that does not help us much.  They know our weaknesses.  Mine is age.  That’s what they bet on, that I won’t be able to endure a sustained bout.  I shouldn’t be except for two things: my desire to see things to their end, and the amazing Cedric.

End blog post #95

We Improve but we do not Progress

[an essay by   ~burning woman~  ]

Time, or the lack thereof, has become my enemy. Of course I realize that from the larger picture, time is not relevant, but I also realize that as a physical entity possessed of an Earthian body, I have to reckon with the time constraint, a real pain! I exist in a mental cage, a Matrix-designed prison in which no “greater thought” is meant to exist. Time, or what Earthians like to call past-present-future, controls thought, awareness, expectations. Nothing here is expected to exist outside of time – that would be unthinkable. Think, how important have time-measuring devices been throughout man’s various attempts at defining itself through his so-called “civilizations.”

It is possible, however, for some of us to push our mental awareness through the bars of the time jail and see from infinity. It’s a bit like traveling several magnitude beyond the speed of light (time and light being artificially tied together in the Matrix) and feeling the mind stretch as she pushes out into the past in order to see the future she is going into – not, as is popularly believed, creating. I do not create the future (there is no such thing as “my” future – not yet!) but it is possible for me to see it take shape if I make the effort to “see” and understand some of the past, that which I have already experienced, forgot about and now must learn to recover in order to make use of.

The real past does not exist within the artificial boundaries imposed by an equally artificial time machine. It certainly does not exist in any “historical” recording, those being even less meaningful in terms of understanding what a human being was/will be. Only a recovered once-traveled and experienced past can have meaning.

I used to be fascinated by history, my favourite subject in high school and I kept on reading and studying history long after I escaped the academic world. Then I came to certain realizations about reality, what it is, what it isn’t. Man’s recorded history became about as valid as using Monopoly money to purchase goods and services: there was a credibility gap that could not be breached. Man’s history, the collectively remembered and the recorded, was not so much a lie as pointless. Pointless as an exercise in recording it, even more so in reading it.

How did I arrive at that? Simple: nothing, absolutely nothing, is learned from history and nothing is gained by having some knowledge of it. It is irrelevant. What is relevant is what I can personally “remember” of what I experienced of past events, how those changed me and re-made me and how, as I collected that awareness, it opened the only trustworthy and meaningful window on a future that my remembrances gave me to look out of.

This will be the third time that I have read Stephen Donaldson’s science fiction “Gap” series. The title of this “essay” is taken from book 4, Chaos and Order: the Gap into Madness. “We improve, but we do not progress.” I imagine that for a programmed entity, such a thought is, well, unthinkable. How could we not progress if we are improving?

The question is, what do we mean by improving, or do we even have a clue what it could mean? What does it mean, for an intelligent, sentient, self-aware being, to “improve”? Does it mean that as a society, better put as a civilization, we are palpably, noticeably improving, in keeping with our claim to be living on a human scale? Does it mean we are improving in terms of developing “new and improved” human values, as individuals?

Yes, technologically we are undeniably improving. Many of the things we surround ourselves with today and take for granted would have been unthinkable just a few years ago.

But aren’t we existing as characters in a series of Marvel Comic books? Aren’t we in fact using Monopoly money to go shopping in our improved world? How meaningful to us as human being are any of our improvements? What are these improvements doing to us? Are they not stealing our minds and locking us in our “now” mental jail?

What is progress? What would it mean to progress? Wouldn’t progress mean becoming better people overall? More aware of our environment, of others? More eager to ensure that as we “improve” we are adding to the overall betterment of this world and all who live and exist on and within, it? Wouldn’t progress mean that we are breaking free of our killing rat race and our insane repetition of acts we time and again performed then swore we would never do again? Wouldn’t progress mean we strove to become more human by demonstrating our desire to display the quality of humaneness towards all life?

I will tell you, once again, what my window into the future is showing me. Think of the current baby pandemic called Covid 19, make it real and multiply that a million times. I see horror upon horror building up exponentially until the entire world is awash in desperation, violence, bloodshed and a total loss of humanity or humane expression. I see the utter end of this civilization and everything that made it possible – people and systems.

But then, at the end of all improvement, I see progress. A new beginning, none of it predicated on the old. I can see this future because I can see the past beyond historical/hysterical fake news and beyond collective memories.

Antierra Manifesto – blog post #94

“I’d like to have friend #1334-02-28 if it pleases.”  He enters the numbers and motions me to head for the cages where the guards wait for further orders.  He walks to another hut and two handlers walk to the cages behind me.  I am let in to my space and soon the ‘transfers’ are done.  I move into Swala’s cage; Tieka is moved to Zel’s cage.

End blog post #93
_______________________

Begin blog post #94

What just happened here are the kinds of things that get you both loved and hated.  When people who have no power see others in similar circumstances apparently without real effort wielding external power, there is jealousy.  When such power brokerage benefits some, they will love you until you fail.  They never expect you to fail.  When you do they turn against you. 

So here’s my thought on the matter.  Methinks heroes should always die young, just after they have accomplished the one thing, whatever it was they set out to do and they should only set out to do one thing.  Then everybody is happy and there are, hopefully, no more expectations – unless they believe their hero is some sort of avatar.  Then the hero’s reputation will both rise and plummet as followers and detractors face off.  It’s foolish, it’s wasteful, it’s so human. 

The women in the cages will love me more than ever, that cannot be helped.  Friends of the overseer will hate me with a passion.  That cannot be helped either.  In the end I will fail those who love me and give satisfaction to those who hate me.  I will die a violent death.  The ones will feel abandoned, the others vindicated.  So I have learned.  So it must be.  Unless I am wrong about this, as wrong as I’ve been about so many other things since I came here.  I wouldn’t mind being wrong in this case!

I turn to Swala.  She seems happy to be with me, but I must ask.  “You want me with you, Swala?”

“I be happy with you, yes Anti.  Always, I like you.  Copy fighting and training ways.  Listen to Teaching.  You tell stories from stars, I always listen.  I believe all from you.  Trust, I do.  I be friend with you.”

There is a quiet, sensible kind of gentler energy to be with an older woman.  Older by our standards.  Swala is twenty years old and has already survived many fights in the arena, few of them fair.  Strong, muscular, heavier than most fighters, she is a favourite for the gamblers and for that has paid a heavy price already.  She carries many scars and ugly welts on her back – result of some ‘unofficial’ flogging probably received in some drunken sex orgy.  Doesn’t matter.  I move against her and we begin to doze off together, nothing left to say that isn’t better left unsaid.  As with Tiegli, this is the closest thing to what the Cydroids would call mind touch. 

You wonder I did not say, “Deirdre”?  Ah but with her the mind touch was always cancelling out by our carnal feelings for one-another, our “need” of each other.  Every time we got close to the knowing it was like poking your finger in a mirror surface of a small pond.  Any reflected image there is broken up.  No, our mind touch, such as it was, could never be pure, no matter how good a thing I thought we had or I wanted to believe we had.  It was always spoiled by the ‘shattering’ energy of hormonal action.

It’s good to just be with a friend during the night.  Especially when your feelings won’t let you decide whether to be happy or sad with your situation.  I enter the Teaching: from sorrow, of which I have plenty here, comes joy, always.  I embrace that joy tonight.  Once embraced it more than suffices.  That’s the thing about joy, you know?  It is self-fulfilling.  If you experience joy in that moment it is impossible to know less or more of it.  It manifests only in completion.  That too is part of the Teaching.

Morning comes, clear, beautiful, clean.  The purple glory of early morning sky has faded, giving way to reveal a deep turquoise blue painted from battlement to roof to battlement across the top of the old keep.  This means no desert storm blowing sand in the sky.  It also means we should enjoy the morning freshness for the rest of the day will bring on oppressive heat.  After our meal we wash and begin our training ritual.  No fights scheduled for today since the fixed one was cancelled.  Our male trainers are less truculent than usual and I wonder if my judge friend has had a meeting with them and laid the law down.  That has happened at times in the past. 

As weapons master, even though the title must remain unofficial, I oversee the distribution of the weapons and how they are handled by each fighter even before they are used.  I insist on the ritual of awareness to be practiced by every trainee.  It took me years to have the male trainers and handlers turn a deaf ear to my exhortations to the women; to ignore the silence rule in this instance.  They are not so stupid they can’t see the results of my teaching on weapons handling.

Thus I address the women each time I am the unofficial overseer (nor do I address them in their pidgin but in proper language):

“Every weapon you hold becomes your friend and it seeks to accomplish three basic tasks: to protect and defend you and to defeat your enemy.  That is the energy it carries; the purpose for which it is made.  It knows this.  That is no different than how a fighter is bred and becomes a member of the female ‘fighter elite’ that you are.  As your bodies are bred for a specific purpose which allows you to fight men who are stronger and heavier than you and to defeat them time and again, so your weapons are ‘bred’ to defend and to attack.  You have no other purpose, neither have they.  So know your weapon well before every fight.  Handle it with pride and use it only with the best of skill you possess.  Never get sloppy with a weapon for if it loses respect for your grip, stance, methods, it will fail you.  It will not let you down if you do not let it down.  This is a great teaching that goes beyond weapons to everything in the land and the sky.  It is the teaching on balance of energies. 

You know of scales?”  They nod affirmatively.  “Good, when you see scales tip one way, you have two choices: either you step on the heavy side and cause the tipping to complete swiftly, or you jump on the lighter side and cause the balance to be restored.  The master must know beforehand which step to take then take it without hesitation.  This you must understand as fighters: whether to join the heavier force and cause it to fall, or oppose it and cause it to hold.”

This too I consider part of the Teaching.  Making the women aware that everything possesses its own spirit; its own force through awareness of purpose and surroundings.  That inanimate “objects” so-called have energy.  That energy fields, or forces, contain sentience causing them to hold together.  When we enter these forces or manipulate them we join with them and become a part of them.  This is life.

“As with human partners, if you have a special and precious weapon, say a sword that you treasure and with which you have won many battles, you do not, at the end of the fight, throw it in a pile with other weapons of various kinds to be handled or even taken by anyone.  I could tell you stories of very ancient times when knights (they were a special class of fighter) kept their swords in scabbards that were worth more than the sword itself, in terms of money.  They inlaid precious stones in the scabbards, the holding belts and even in the hilts of their blades.  It was their way of telling their sword friend how much they appreciated them.  And know this, that if the knight was ever in dire straights and became poor, he may sell his horse, his armour, the very scabbard and belt that held the sword, but he would never sell the sword.  If he could not carry it openly, he would find a place for it, wrap it carefully in oiled rags and hide it with the hope that in better days, or at great need, he would find it again.  Thus many old swords were found again by new fighters and new tales of heroes born from difficult times.

“Now hold your weapons high and salute life.  Salute victory.  Salute the goddess who slowly awakens to you as you awaken to her.  Our days are coming, as surely as the seasons change.  Hail to the weapons!”

Each time we go through this ritual the women barely restrain themselves from cheering.  These are the moments that inexorably change the face of Malefactus. 

End blog post #94

Antierra Manifesto – blog post #93

“Wild” slaves such as myself, rarely found, even rarer they manage to survive the rapes and tortures suffered in the orgies, are branded by admission year plus a #-1, meaning number of ‘wilds’ and non-crèche raised.  These brands are usually found only on the black women captured beyond the desert.  For whatever reason, although they are physically taller, stronger and superior in weapons handling, the men of Malefactus have not seen fit to breed them.  Or perhaps they have and the breeding program failed.  They are moody and very dangerous.  They seem to be missing an essential element of the ‘normal’ ISSA mental make-up due to breeding or evolutionary branching.
End blog post #92
_________________________________
Begin blog post #93

My first order of business is to contrive to have Tieka and the ‘Lover’ put in  the same cage.  Obvious – they must be able to plot together and must know each other’s abilities and weaknesses to a fault.  Also they must know if they like each other and if both be willing to die for their love.  Not such an easy task.  Glad I am I don’t have Tiki to worry about anymore.

“You!”  The overseer points at me.  “Come here.”  Oh-oh, what now.  I walk slowly with head bowed to his private table under the overhang.  He is chewing on some concoction that smells of onion.  Even for this malodorous place, he stinks.  Glad I am at the moment I am no longer sexually attractive or desirable.  I stand a meter from him, stop and wait, head still bowed.  A slave does not make eye contact with an overseer, at least not until he orders her to, then if she does not, he slaps her.  If she does, he slaps her.  It’s the no-win game they like to play.  This one is the worst kind we’ve ever had running the compound.  Not one redeeming quality have I ever observed in him.

“You ready now die old witch?  Tomorrow get two challengers, they fight you together.  They kill you sure this time.  I tired you be around, cause trouble with young slaves.” 

I know he’s the one who arranged for such an unfair fight, two men together against one woman.  The gambling once more will go against me.  What chance do I have to survive this?  Especially if the two men are pros.  It’s been many years since I’ve done two on one but after Warmo it’ll be either extremely easy or impossible.  Which do I choose?  No choice.  I’m still needed here with the women, as Yoba stated.  ‘I fight, I kill.’  It’s our mantra.  I say nothing in reply, wait.

“You I hate more than others, old bitch.  You ugly, disgusting krosspeeg.  You think you man killer, huh?  Maybe I kill you now.”  He pulls a dagger from a concealed sheath in his belt under the soft overhanging paunch of a stomach.  He points it in my direction, standing up slowly.  Instinctively I jump back and spread my legs, poised to ward the thrust and take him down to fall on his own knife.  He knows I can do it, and easily too.  He grins, his yellow teeth sticking over his lips – yeah, who’s ugly!  I think, ‘coward piece of shit.’

“They choose weapon already.  Maybe I tell you, maybe not, huh?”  Another violation of strict policy.  The challenger must choose his weapons in front of the fighter.

“Must need know for weapons judge.”  I reply simply, letting it hang there.  Just a hint of a threat which I know he gets.

“One choose staff.  Other axe.”  But that’s a total violation of any regulation, an impossible conundrum for the fighter.  Unless it’s two on two, they must use the same weapon.  How do I choose mine now?  Shithead.  I want to jump at him and crush his stinking face in my hands.  I feel the bionic circuits pulsing.  Fortunately a red-robed judge walks by and I importune him, taking a considerable chance.

“Please sir, there be problem with weapons choice for tomorrow.  I fight two men, same time.  They choose different weapon.  Which I choose?  Legal problem, cannot decide.”

The judge turns on the overseer in obvious anger.  “What’s that Achnarr?  How can two challengers choose different weapons on one fighter?  Who authorized this?”  What a pleasure it is to see the overseer go weak with fear.  Well, well, well.  This fight is a more than personal hate on Achnarr’s part.  It’s a put-up job, obviously, another assassination attempt on me, the winnings going to the overseer.  No one obviously has been advised of Achnarr’s illegal manipulations in his favour.  The judge’s face now matches his robe.

“Guards!”  Five burly black-suited guards come running from their barracks, laser guns drawn.  “Take this ‘dungut’ and lock it up.”  Indicating the overseer. 

“I, Algomo, authorize the arrest.  Charged with crime of fixing fights.  He’s been fixing the fights for himself.” 

I just manage to lock eyes with Achnarr as he’s being put in restraints.  ‘I want you now, Achnarr.  See you in the arena.  How brave will you feel there?’ 

The judge turns to me:  “You slave, you say nothing.  Tomorrow’s fight is cancelled until this is sorted out.  I know you can understand my speech, no need to pretend with me.  I know you well, Antierra.  I know you by name and reputation.  Doc Bal and I are friends.  Tomorrow I get the challengers to choose weapons properly in front of you.  Then we schedule this fight for next day if there is an opening for it.  Can you handle two very good challengers on your own?  I may not be able to change that part.”

“Yes sir, I can.  I fight, I kill.” 

“Good.  You may go to your quarters.  Do you have any requests at this moment regarding living arrangements?  Do you need a lover?  I hear you have given yours up to the ‘Concubine.’  You continue to amaze us Antierra, and maybe frighten us a little too, I don’t mind telling you.  So?  What do you need?”

“Ah, sir… you amaze me too.  I don’t know; slaves do not ask.”

“I give you an order then.  Tell me what you want done.”

“Slave #1336-14-09 would like trainee #1341-15-07 for lover.”  He lifts the heavy sleeve on the red robe and activates a Datacom.  He enters the numbers without asking me to repeat them.  Pretty good, I think.

“It will be done.  And you, I order you, ask.”

“Sir there be a matter of a corrupt judge who tried to have me assassinated during a training session.  The fighter to question in this matter is #1341-29-03” (See blog post #86)

“That will be done.”  He enters the numbers on his Datacom. 

“More on this matter, please.  If the judge is condemned to arena challenge I’d like for the fighter he implicated to be the one to fight him.  A just exchange, I believe.”

He stares at me for some moments, eyebrows raised.  “You have a sharp mind.  I think Balomo may be right about you.  You shouldn’t be here at all, but at the King’s palace and Council chambers making policy for this land.  What a waste of good material.  Sad.  Now tell me about your current living arrangements.  Would you like some change?”

“I’d like to have friend #1334-02-28 if it pleases.”  He enters the numbers and motions me to head for the cages where the guards wait for further orders.  He walks to another hut and two handlers walk to the cages behind me.  I am let in to my space and soon the ‘transfers’ are done.  I move into Swala’s cage; Tieka is moved to Zel’s cage.

End blog post #93