The question for Ukraine, Belarus and Russia is, “Do you want to be more or do you want to be less?” For there is nothing in between. You either accelerate or decelerate. There is nothing in between. There is no standstill. There is no maintaining status quo.
The illusion of maintaining the status quo
What was the Soviet Union? An attempt to create a certain state and to maintain it. Yes, there was an ideology of expanding communism to the entire world. Yes, throughout the Soviet Union’s existence, there were overt and covert efforts to extend the Soviet Union and communism. Yet there came a point where there was also a certain acceptance that it will not be easy to extend communism further or extend the Soviet Union further. And there was throughout the entire time also a desire to maintain a certain status quo because communism as an ideology is an attempt to create a static society. And why is this so? Because the very nature of elitism, the very nature of the manipulators behind elitism, is to hold on to what they have, to seek to recreate what they feel they lost in the past and then to hold on to it once they think they have recreated it.
This is the entire psychology that you see throughout planet Earth. Not only in leaders, but in peoples around the world where they seek to hold on to what they have created. They seek to first create a certain state and then they want to hold on to it. But when you take a look at history, do you see anyone being successful in holding on to status quo? You may say: “Well, the Roman empire lasted for centuries. This or that empire lasted for a long time.” But did they? Did they manage to create a state and then hold on to it? And you will see that they did not, and why not?
Well, there are many reasons for this. First of all, the nature of the duality consciousness. You can only create an empire through force. And when you apply force, you create an imbalance that will threaten the state you have created through force. And therefore, when you use force to create an empire, that empire will feel that it is constantly threatened. The leaders of that empire will feel constantly threatened. Look at the Roman emperors. Did they feel at peace? Nay, they felt somebody was always out to take their power away from them. Often, even their own family members. Did the Roman empire ever manage to maintain a status quo? Nay, for it was constantly expanding. Why? Because its economy was based on conquest and stealing from others rather than producing from within.
What was the Soviet Union’s economy based on? Exploiting others rather than being self-sufficient from within. A Marxist communist economy can never be self-sufficient, can never be sustainable. In fact, a truly capitalist economy cannot be sustainable either. And that is why you see that these empires were driven to expand. The Roman empire had to continue to expand, but eventually expanded so far that, given the communication technology at the time, it could not keep the empire together. And then, of course, the internal conflicts, the internal power struggles, caused it to fall apart.
Why did Vladimir Putin invade Ukraine? Because his empire cannot be sustained either. He has perhaps some conscious goal of recreating the Russian empire or counteracting democracy, or whatever he may think in the confusion of his mind, where he is barely able to keep any thought for a very long period of time. But the reality is that the internal contradictions of a force-based empire forced him to seek to expand the empire. He was in a position of power, but he could have maintained that state of power for the rest of his lifetime. And even though that is not necessarily such a long time, he nevertheless could not just sit there and enjoy the position he had. He felt he had to do more.
The law of self-transcendence
There is a law, a cosmic law, that accompanies the law of free will. And this law states that although you have free will to do whatever you want, to have whatever experience you want for as long as you want, you do not have the free will to maintain any experience indefinitely. In other words, the law of free will is in a polarity with the law of self-transcendence. You can do whatever you want with your free will as long as you are becoming more. But when you refuse to transcend yourself and seek to create an empire on earth through force, you seek to create a horizontal empire rather than being willing to transcend yourself, then you create this internal contradiction. This means that you have to try to do more and more in a horizontal way instead of transcending yourself in a vertical way.
That is why there is nothing that can stand still in the universe. This is a cosmic law. It is beyond natural laws, but it is reflected in natural laws, which is why you have this process of evolution that can be observed even though it is in no means described by the theory of evolution. You have this law of self-transcendence and if you are not willing to become more than you are now, then you are driven to seek to become more of what you are now by expanding horizontally instead of vertically. But this will only happen through force, and force creates its own opposition and therefore it is only a matter of time before the counterforce through your own use of force will wreck your effort to expand horizontally.
In the past, there were certain empires that could maintain that force-based state for some time, but this has been shortened so that it now becomes a shorter and shorter time span. The Soviet empire did not last as long as the Roman empire. Putin’s empire will not last as long as the Soviet empire. And this is why you see what you see in Ukraine, where the Russian military, despite its supposed superiority, is basically in a retreating or defensive position. They withdraw in order to regroup, but they are on the way to withdrawing back to Russia itself and whether they will ever be able to regroup is an open question.
What does this have to do with Ukraine? Well, when you look at Ukraine as a nation you see that Ukraine does not have the desire to expand horizontally. But Ukraine, before the war, was deeply divided between a large part of the population, primarily in the sections of society and the nation that were closest to Russia, who wanted to maintain the status quo and those who wanted real progress, real transcendence. This stalemate, or at least this very slow growth that was there before, has now been shattered by the war. And this is actually a tremendous opportunity for the Ukrainian nation. This is not thereby in any way justifying it or saying that the war is a good thing, but given that this has now happened, you can either look backwards or you can look forwards. But if you look forwards, you need to say: “What can we do to take advantage of this opportunity?”
Transcending the victim consciousness
Here is at least one aspect of what you can do. There are naturally many things that can be done by the Ukrainian people, but here is one shift you can make. It is very tempting, and there is a certain segment of the Ukrainian people who have already gone into this, but it is very tempting to look at the actual situation and say: “Ukraine is a victim here. We have been brutally attacked, our people have been killed, tortured, raped, their homes have been destroyed, the electrical grid has been largely destroyed and so forth. We are the victims of Russian aggression.” But what was it that caused this stalemate? What is behind the people who wanted to maintain the status quo? What was behind the people in the Soviet Union who wanted to maintain the status quo, the people in Russia today who want to maintain the status quo? It is the victim consciousness.
Now you may very well say that there is often a specific outer thing that people use to justify this victim consciousness, such as: “We were attacked by Russia.” But there is a deeper consciousness of being a victim where you feel consciously that you are powerless to change your situation because there are these external forces that you cannot overcome, you cannot fight against them. But what is even deeper behind this is again the unwillingness to make your own decisions as to, in the deepest sense, decide: “What kind of person am I, or what kind of person do I want to be?” But also: “What kind of life do I want to have? What kind of life experience do I want to have? What kind of society do I want to live in? What kind of leaders do I want to have in this society?”
You can talk about the Russian peoples and their history and some of this applies to some of the people in Ukraine. They have a long history of not wanting to make their own decisions. Well, this is the victim consciousness: “I do not have to make my own decisions. There is no point in me making my own decisions because I cannot overcome this external force that is keeping me in this present state.” What you do when you go into this victim consciousness is that you are, in essence, you have created a sense of equilibrium based on current conditions as they are. And because you feel you are a victim of these larger forces that you cannot do anything about, you want to maintain that sense of equilibrium at all costs. You do not want to lose it. You are trying to maintain a sense of equilibrium, and therefore you want your society to maintain the outer conditions that give you that sense of equilibrium. You do not want your society to change.
Shattering the old sense of equilibrium
You may look at some people in eastern Ukraine or many, many places in Russia, who are older. Some of them might be retired. They have this small Soviet era apartment they live in. They have the same furniture they have had for 20, 30, 40, 50 years. They have a fixed income. They have a daily routine of doing whatever they do. And they do not want to lose what they have. They want to hold on to it. But behind it all is the unwillingness to consider that you could be something else than what you are right now. You could be more than what you are right now. In order to maintain the sense of equilibrium that you have in this very narrow physical environment, you want society to stay the same. This is what gave tremendous problems in Ukraine, much bigger problems than you saw in other Warsaw Pact or former Soviet countries in Europe (that have made far more progress than Ukraine) because there was this percentage of the population that was wanting society to stay the same, that did not want any change.
What has happened now is that the war in many areas has uprooted these people and their sense of equilibrium. It has, so to speak, forced them out of their sense of equilibrium. You can still see in the eastern part of Ukraine how there are people whose towns were attacked by the Russian military and they refused to leave. They refused to evacuate because they could not conceive of going out of their sense of equilibrium and a physical environment that they thought gave them that sense. So they are frantically trying to hold on, trying to stay in their city even though their houses might have been bombed. There is no electricity, there is no water, there is hardly any food. They are still trying to hold on.
But you will see that many of them have not been able to hold on and therefore, if you could look at the collective consciousness, you would see that this force of wanting to hold back growth in Ukraine has been greatly diminished, in fact almost shattered in many areas. And again, this is not justifying the war, it is not saying that there was anything positive or justifiable about the Russian invasion, but now that it has happened, Ukraine has a choice to make. Will you, once the war is over, seek to go back and create some kind of equilibrium, some kind of status quo, recreate what people had? Or will you say: “Now that we have had such a decisive break with the history of our country, how can we move forward from here? What is the opportunity we now have?”
The tremendous opportunity for Ukraine
The opportunity you now have is that, in a way that has never happened before in your nation’s history, you have an opportunity to decide: “What kind of nation do we want to be? What kind of people do we want to be? What kind of society do we want to be? Do we want it to be a backwards looking society that seeks to recreate something that we feel we have lost? Or do we want to make a complete shift and look forward and say – What can we do now? What is our opportunity here?”
There will come a point where the war is over, the fighting is over. There WILL come a point where the war is over. It will not be a stalemate like you had from 2014 to the present. There will come a point where the war is decisively over and Ukraine has an opportunity to move forward. Exactly when that happens depends on the willingness of the Ukrainian people to shift. If you are not willing to shift, you can drag this out.
If you are willing to shift, there will come that decisive point where you can say: “Now we can begin to rebuild our nation without fearing that Russian rockets will destroy it.” Is there a will to shift out of the victim consciousness, out of the looking backwards, to looking at: “What will we do to move forward?” And quite frankly, you need to look to other nations that have already gone through the process of qualifying for NATO and EU membership. You have applied, your president has applied for EU membership, and an expedited process. But there are still people in Ukraine, there is a certain pocket in the collective consciousness that feels that: “Oh, because we were victims of Russian aggression, the EU must have pity on us and give us membership and help us rebuild the country. They must do this for us.” But this is the victim consciousness in a new version. You cannot build a better Ukraine if you have this state of consciousness of you are looking for a handout, you are looking for charity, you are looking for someone else to compensate you for what someone else has done to you.
You must shift and say: “Here we are, we are a large nation, we have natural resources, we have industrious people who are willing to work, who are innovative, who can come up with new ideas. We have tremendous assets. We have tremendous opportunity. We are not joining the EU to be the backwater of the EU and they have to somehow help us rebuild ourselves. We are joining the EU because we are ready to be an asset to the European community. We are not looking for charity, we are looking for opportunity. This will require a shift. It has already started. Many people in Ukraine have already made that shift, but there is more work to be done before it will become a self-reinforcing process.
The more aware people can work on themselves and help this spread and gradually build that momentum that leads up to the shift so that the shift is now irreversible and Ukraine can look forward. You have some leaders, the president, his advisors, many of the members of parliament who have already shifted or are willing to shift or are in the process of shifting. But you also have a certain group of politicians who do not want to shift because their primary concern is to maintain their own position in society. You have the oligarchs who do not want to lose their economic privilege, but you also have politicians who do not want to lose the power they feel they have.
New leaders who serve the people
Now, these people who do not want to lose something are also in a way in the victim consciousness. They are just in a much more powerful or comfortable position than the retired people living in a Soviet-era apartment in some Eastern Ukrainian town. But they are still in the victim consciousness because they are so concerned about maintaining the outer situation that gives them a sense of equilibrium that they are willing to hold back the growth of the entire society. There were some among these people who were very angry when a new president was elected who was not part of the political apparatus, and therefore could not be controlled by them. There were people who were very angry when new politicians were elected to parliament, and who also were not part of the traditional apparatus, and therefore could not be controlled. What needs to happen is that the Ukrainian people become aware of this.
There are progressive politicians who want positive change for all people in Ukraine. And there are regressive politicians who want to maintain their own positions and the positions of the power elite, the privileged elite, the oligarchs, the bureaucrats, the politicians who are politicians for life, not as a service to the country. They are politicians to enrich themselves and their associates, not to enrich the people. There needs to be a shift there where people begin to look at this and say: “What kind of country do we want to be? And if we want a progressive country that can accelerate itself, that can transcend itself and become more, then what kind of politician do we need in order to manifest that kind of country?” Well, certainly not the old kind who are looking backwards, who are seeking to enrich themselves rather than serving the people.
This is an awareness that needs to spread throughout the collective consciousness so that more and more people come to that conclusion. It is not a matter of a violent revolution or even a peaceful revolution. It is a matter of a revolution in consciousness where people become aware of this, and they simply stop believing in what these politicians are saying. They stop voting for them. And again, because of the war, the status quo that was there has been shattered. And this means that the new politicians have a better opportunity than ever before to actually enact real change.
Building a new sense of accountability
This needs to be seen. Some have already grasped it, some have not yet. There is a need to not have tunnel vision and not be so focused on the war that you cannot step back and say: “What will come after? Now that our society has been in many ways shaken at its foundations, what opportunities does that give us that we did not have before? And how can we make use of this to actually bring the country in the direction that we have always wanted to bring it in? Towards prosperity for the people, democracy, openness, responsibility for politicians and those in the economy, in the business community.”
There needs to be a new sense of accountability. Because what is corruption? Corruption is that those who are in certain positions in society to take bribes and grant favors are untouchable. They have no accountability. That is why they can participate in this corruption and get away with it year after year, decade after decade. But where does this come from? Well, it comes from Soviet society which institutionalized a class of people. The classless society had two classes of people. Those who had no position, and those who had some kind of position in society sanctioned by the government. And those who had a position could escape accountability. They could get away with all kinds of things and escape accountability. And this is another aspect of this entire victim consciousness.
A class of privileged narcissistic people
These people, once they had a position, they wanted to hold on to it. And if that meant maintaining the entire Soviet system, then they would do whatever was in their sphere of influence to maintain that system so they could maintain their personal position. In other words, there were these far-flung ideas in Marxist ideology of creating this wonderful community with solidarity between the workers and where everybody saw themselves as part of a whole. But in reality what was created, at least in the Soviet Union and even in modern China, is a society where there is this class of people who have striven to attain a positions because they were driven by a desire to get advantages for themselves, privileges for themselves. And once they have it, they want to maintain it.
This is the central mechanism in both Soviet communism and Chinese communism, and other forms of communism you have seen around the world. You have a certain class of people who have no commitment to the community, to the whole, to the country, to serving the people. They seek a position because they want to have an advantage for themselves. They only care about themselves. And once they have it, they want to maintain it. And that is why you have these people who are willing to take bribes, they are willing to suppress the people, they are willing to imprison those who object to the system. And you have this entire system run by self-centered, egotistical, narcissistic people. The entire system is run by a certain type of people because the system promotes and rewards those kinds of people because, out of their desire to maintain their own privileges, they are willing to maintain the system. The system is self-reinforcing because once it is put in place, the people who have gained an advantage, a privilege from being part of the system, they want to maintain the system.
Now, you can look at modern Russia and see it has not broken free from this. You can look at Ukraine before the war and see that Ukraine had not broken free from it either. It was free to a larger degree than Russia, but not fully. You can look at Ukraine and say: “Well, now we have an opportunity to break this spell, to break free from this system, to rebuild our entire system, will we take it or will we ignore it and allow these people to either continue in their positions or to come back into their positions and take over the running of the country once the war is over? What will we do? Will we make a break with the past?” It is not even a matter of breaking with the Soviet Union or breaking with communism because you also saw the same kind of system in other nations that were not communists. But it is a matter of realizing that there is this dynamic in human society where certain types of systems reward the most selfish people, and this will always create a repressive society that cannot be sustained in the long run.
Creating the self-reinforcing spiral
This is a tremendous opportunity for Ukraine. It may seem premature to talk about this while the war is still going on, but the war will not always be going on. And therefore, the people in Ukraine have an opportunity to go beyond, to look to the future and to build a better future for themselves, for their nation, and even for the larger community of Europe and the world. Ukraine is an asset to the European community, or at least it has the potential to quickly become an asset. It is the hope of higher awareness that Ukraine and a critical mass of the Ukrainian people will make that shift and step up, leave behind that victim consciousness and accept: “Yes, we are an asset to the European community. We are not looking for a handout, we are not looking for charity, we are looking for active participation in a community that we see as a better future than what we have had in the past.”