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Excerpt from Dreams

Alliances I Am Looking For (p. 395)

From chapter "Blasphemy"

I am fully aware that many people, and indeed entire cultures, upon facing their own powerlessness in the face of seemingly unstoppable horrors, sometimes fall back on mystical visions of unseen forces coming from out of nowhere—perhaps literally from out of nowhere— to save the day, to drive the conquerors back to where they came, or even to drive them all the way to hell, to restore the birds to the sky, the bison to the plains, the fish to the water, the people to the land. I am fully aware that, faced with the seemingly unstoppable horror that is this culture, many of these visions have made people believe they now wore magical clothing that would stop the bullets of the conquerors.

These mystical visions have clearly not yet come true. The conquerors have not been driven back to hell, but rather have continued to bring hell with them. The birds have not been restored to the sky, nor the bison to the plains, nor the fish to the water, nor the people to the land. The soil hasn’t even been restored to the land.

I am fully aware that with writing this book I have been this entire time in danger of falling into similar traps. When all work on this side fails to stop the members of the cult of the scientific, materialist, instrumentalist, mechanistic, managerial perspective, fails to stop the sociopaths, fails to stop the zombies from murdering all whom I love, from murdering the planet, I am in danger of, in desperation and sorrow, harnessing my hopes for a future onto some miraculous assistance from beings this culture staunchly and feverishly inculcates us into believing do not exist.

But I feel comfortable that this is not what I’m doing right now. I’m not suggesting we call on those on other sides in lieu of fighting back. Quite the opposite; I’m suggesting we try to learn to listen better so that we may gain whatever assistance they may be able to give us, as we fight the zombies on this side with every tool at our disposal.

Many freedom fighters have resisted oppression with the assistance of those on other sides. Harriet Tubman is certainly one such example. When she was young, she suffered a head injury when a white man threw a weight at a fleeing slave and struck her instead. This injury led to what we would now probably call seizures, where she would fall seemingly unconscious of her surroundings, but would remain aware of all that happened around her. After her injury, she began to experience visions and dreams which she took as signs from God (she was a devout Christian). These visions remained with her throughout her life, and she relied on this “consulting with God,” as she called it, to help her find her way and to save her from danger as she brought slaves to freedom. Evidently her consultations were successful, as she was able to famously remark, “I was conductor of the Underground Railroad for eight years, and I can say what most conductors can’t say—I never ran my train off the track and I never lost a passenger.” Thomas Garrett said of Tubman, “I never met with any person of any color who had more confidence in the voice of God, as spoken direct to her soul.”

Another resistor who listened to those on other sides was Lozen, the sister of the Chihenne-Chiricahua Apache chief Victorio. As well as a skilled warrior, she was a prophet, and those on other sides were able to help her learn the movements of the white invaders. One of her methods of divination was to stand with her arms stretched wide while chanting a prayer to Ussen, a primary deity of the Apaches. The prayer went, “Upon this earth / on which we live / Ussen has Power / This Power is mine / For locating the enemy. / I search for that Enemy / Which only Ussen the Great / Can show to me.” She would slowly turn around, and the feelings in her arms would tell her not only where the enemy was, but how many there were.

Those are the alliances I am looking for.


So what am I suggesting? Am I suggesting that we make sacrifices to those who do wish us well that are commensurate with those the zombies are making to those who do not wish us well? I don’t know if I am. But what if I am? What forms would these sacrifices take? Would we sacrifice humans or zombies or machines or technologies at the same scale that the zombies sacrifice humans and nonhumans?


Check out your own level of horror. How atrocious would you consider it if we did sacrifice humans or zombies or machines or technologies on precisely the same scale that the zombies sacrifice humans and nonhumans? How nasty would that make us?


You do realize, of course, that through the back door you have acknowledged the unbearably atrocious nature of the dominant culture. If you believe the dominant culture is not sacrificing humans and nonhumans to its gods, why would you express any shock whatsoever at someone else suggesting precisely the same level of sacrifice (in this case, zero)? And if you do believe the dominant culture is sacrificing humans and nonhumans to its gods, why would you not want to stop such terrible sacrifices using whatever means are necessary?