The situation we find ourselves in demands more than the tactics of non-violence, which is not as such to invoke its opposite. We are going to a strange doom, without a fight, and patting ourselves on the back for being good Gandhians. We live in a new reality and Gandhis provokes a sudden contempt. The methods of non-violence are falling away into the oblivion of Gandhian pseudo-morality, and such tactics declare to the opposition that they can ignore protest. And the last generation has shown the terrifying consolidation of state power that won’t change via non-violent methods, which are in any case forgetting the facts of ‘rebellion’, from the American revolution to the Civil War, We confront impossible odds but then so did George Washington.
Those who follow Gandhian tactics should do so for themselves but they cannot enjoin universal acceptance. The Bible is dubious precedent indeed and we are rapidly leaving christianity behind, along with the mythology of Jesus who was very contradictory. He is not our guide anymore and his positions are totally obscure. The Gita is hardly any better.
For an entire generation we have seen the dominance of non-violence, and now our position is almost hopeless.
It was said by Rajneesh, a buddha figure, in his contempt for the false sanctity of Gandhi that ten thousand men with rifles could have freed India in the twenties. Gandhi’s methods spring from the era of the First World War where indeed violence was so extreme that revulsion became overpowering.
But the reality remains that there is no consistent spiritual basis for non-violence. The non-violent meme springs from the Jain tradition, but note that Jain monks renounced the world and considered stepping on insects to be in violation of non-violence: they would fast to death for that reason.
This is the world that Gandhi took up and distorted for a political movement that Jain buddhas would not have considered.
Sometimes non-violent tactics are useful and effective, but to make them universal is a gross mistake, and it has crippled the left in the past generation.
There is a non-violent rebellion underway, and everyone and anyone is invited.