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The Soul is the Way Out
Escape from hostility cycles & The Scapegoat Strategy
I can identify with the plight of both Israel and the desperate people it’s marked as unwelcome. This more universal ability to empathize is often condemned by the retaliation-minded, one way or the other.
The same kind of condemnatory hostility cycle is embedded in my family on both sides, both Jewish and non-Jewish, so I devoted my life to transcendence and salvation, which was achieved. I can recommend the approach and testify to its power.
My aunt was the president of the American Women’s Zionist association, Hadassah, but my father (her brother) never agreed with her. Like many American Jews, the Jewish side of my family could argue heatedly about Zionism. There was also a massive, never-transcended fight in my family when my Jewish father married my non-Jewish mother.
That was shortly before I was born, and the dispute was mostly from the Jewish side. I later found out it was not solely due to my mother’s non-Jewishness, as my parents had claimed to me. It was due to other questions about her behavior. My grandfather told me they had considered my mother to be extortionary and ruthless, and gave cause. “Jewishness” was a constant red herring in this family dispute, as it often seems like it can be more broadly. Eventually, decades later, all the simmering family hostilities evolved into the scapegoating of me, which helped to better unify the family. This is why scapegoating occurs— to create false unification.
In the escalating Middle Eastern conflict, I do see real echos of this intractable conflict style— particularly an obsession with identity and its interaction with political scapegoating. I do consider my family representative of the American liberal power structure, so it’s straightforward for me to map some larger political issues onto that large, far-ranging network that spans the entire US.
The Scapegoat Strategy
It took me a long time to understand drawing the scapegoat straw was a life sentence as a primogenitor in a family that allows this predatory behavior, as it was for my mother’s family in other generations. The network power brokers condemn you in order to have leverage for using and thwarting you, then create the cause for the condemnation. It’s the Scapegoat Strategy: all the selected target has to do is exist and not be perfect (two of my major claims to fame). I love my family, and thought I could play ball and fix it. I was completely and utterly wrong. I played into the strategy, ignorantly.
I now know the behavior to be a family pattern, and cycle, over power and money. It extends out into the larger social arena. In my experience, how to address these kind of patterns has now been written out of our social guides and systems, with motivation, to devastating social consequence. Family dysfunction at scale plays out at scale as social crisis.
Scapegoating in the family: tactical roots of power-brokering, but with more intimacy and legal power
My mother had sowed the seeds of my scapegoating while I was still an academic achiever at one of NYC’s top public schools, Hunter College High School, which starts at age 12 in the 7th grade. As soon as puberty age hit, seemingly out of nowhere, she started behaving like a corrupt official in search of infractions to create a control situation. I had seen her do this in her direct family. She created an environment where I was constantly on edge— including with friends and distant family, due to her psychosis making things that were acceptable for them traps for me— then blamed it on me. This is a whole style of predatory parenting, to intentionally create instability for a child, and then blame it on them. My case has proven it’s currently forbidden to be talked about, or else.
In a small town environment like my mother is from, the scapegoat can be shown to be breaking the external peace just by being loud. But in the midst of the urban chaos I grew up in, it made no sense, as I was behaviorally angelic in comparison to the environment. My academic performance and mood began to suffer from her bizarre persecution, her and my father’s constant loud fighting over money and the family business, and the external 1990s Brooklyn extreme street chaos. The cognitive dissonance of being treated like a criminal while I was well behaved— just sometimes surly and paranoid from unwarranted attack— really could spin me out, as nowhere felt safe, but for entirely different reasons. I played into the strategy, ignorantly.
I got through it all with no serious problems but your typical inner-city and predatory mother trauma, but that was not true for my parents and the family business. They were facing severe financial problems and a slow-motion, protracted collapse of the business. I experienced them trying to use my normal developmental challenges as a defamatory distraction. A cover story for them to use to share with others recklessly, to distract from their own extreme middle-aged dysfunction. Everyone in the larger network knew a highly fabulist, exaggerated version of my adolescent business in the late 90s, and a minimized version of theirs. But by 2000, I was in the family business, as my father told me we were about to lose the house.
Power moves during hostility eruptions
By 2005 or so, I had been credited with being instrumental to the salvation of the family business, which had been facing failure for years when I entered in, the year before September 11th. There was a lot of deception and manipulation involved that made it feel like constant stubborn dysfunction, causing me constant stress. My moves worked for the business, but I had to fight for them. The efforts didn’t stabilize me personally— they did the opposite, due to constant dysfunction— but they did, provably, stabilize the business. Like my parents at this time, I could be a mess, but the business turned around. Some people who had denied my father financial assistance when I first came in expressed wonderment as to the turnaround, many of them wealthy and powerful.
In 2010, I tried to change the family control scheme by moving to Los Angeles to expand business, in several ways. I feel I then faced constant intentional sabotage fueled by abandonment feelings from family, until I eventually spun out. I was not, in fact, escaping. I had inadvertently triggered hostilities that would cause psychopathic retaliation. People with power can use leverage to swoop in for control, and try to portray those tactical maneuvers as benevolence. I played into the strategy, ignorantly.
Moving away to create distance from hostilities had the opposite effect. It led my family to suddenly about face and start condemning me as worthless, due to their feelings of abandonment and threat. And it would all be portrayed by them as a new, unquantifiable illness in me, with the absurd symptom list of “anything I do or do not do.” I played into the strategy, ignorantly.
This was already 2010, so I hit the internet and shared my desperation and panic, appealing for help, unstable and ganged up on. I was then hit with a nonstop wave of retaliation to make sure I would never have recourse for anything again. I was dwarfed by the sudden magnitude, had no power, and didn’t have any experience handling such a large-scale attack. There had been no precedent for the scale: I didn’t handle it well, and I was spastic, and then flattened. My mother had previously led similar offensives, and other family and network members had used similar tactics on others even outside of the family— in business— so a well-oiled machine went into effect. I played into the strategy, ignorantly.
I barely survived the onslaught and my own dysfunctional reaction to it, but I did, and immediately accepted any path where God was sincerely mentioned as the answer. I was already receptive to God, and I became entirely receptive to God’s salvation. That was 12 years ago, and after my acceptance, my family became even more hostile to me. They used my acceptance to injure and defraud me using the Social Security system and its intersection with the family business. I was flattened by the strategy, but knew I would probably have to fight back to the end on this one eventually.
Compliant nonviolence as response to power-brokering
I adopted sincere Christian values 12 years ago— compliant nonviolence while making noise about what was being done to me, at first only in the “appropriate” channels. But I had understood the family targeting and loathing would only continue to try to blame me for being injured, and defrauded, and defamed. A pure scapegoat. Between 2015-2018, I would have to go almost completely silent while being injured and defrauded intentionally.
God rebuilt me from the injury used to legally disable me, in order to go public— to make noise in more channels— and to provide an example of a family’s sacrifice through scapegoating. To their own intractable hostilities and generational resentments and material needs. People do try to deal with problems in those areas through human sacrifice, and that’s what I am. At this post-pandemic moment in time, this violent attitude is everywhere.
My family wanted me disabled, maliciously, and so disabled me using powers available to them in the system. If I wasn’t silent, that would eventually follow the imposed disabled path of increased risk of everything, including homelessness. I’ve allowed their wishes to play out by not suing them, which I could’ve done years ago and had the funds to do. But, God instructed me to have the predatory scheme play out publicly instead, and not to stoop to their American-style money-reliant legalism, which is a miserable way to live.
Acceptance is the key
I’ve been honoring family’s imposed malicious wishes of difficulty and homelessness for me through inflicted, supposedly inescapable disability— while now making public noise about it— trying to emulate my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in the message of the soul’s salvation in the midst. My devotion to nonviolent transcendence led me to full salvation through Jesus Christ, who I do believe was the first human arrival of the מָשִׁיחַ (messiah). I do believe the Messianic Force is beginning a material return, but it’s a fraught process, as explained long ago. But that’s just me, and not the kind of thing you say out loud in my family. In order to publicly declare that, I knew I would most likely be severing ties with my family completely, as their cover-up story is so opposed to my value system.
Where I diverted from their conflict completely, and began to transcend, is when I started to try to affect change above, in the Divine world, instead of in this lowest earthly world. All of my priorities have been spiritual, which is entirely out of fashion in this milieu: even our spiritual resources tend to focus on material gain of various kinds. There was a clear way out with this approach for others, but it was hostilely refused, causing regular escalation; however, I got my way out. At 44 years old, I still can see no other way out of others’ intractable hostility without degenerating into reactionary violence. The Soul is the Way Out.
Wait, what does this all have to do with Middle Eastern violent intractable conflict again?
Oh yeah! Well, in that scenario, nobody is talking about nonviolent transcendence of hostilities. It’s almost like Christian values are absent from the supposed “Jewish-Muslim” conflict there, which is really a ruthless geopolitical turf war that has nothing to do with God. It seems purely like a traditional eye-for-an-eye war of escalating, retaliatory brutality from both “sides.”
The Soul is the Way Out. ◼︎
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