Politics Follows the Four Elements.

posted July 6, 2005 by Jer


Most people are water. They represent the majority. They follow the flow of life, accept things as they pass then move on. Not much can get in the way of the water, and when it does, it causes problems. You can't stop the will of the people any easier then you can stop the flow of a river. You can, however, redirect it. To do so, you need to be a rock.

Most politicians are rocks. Rocks direct the flow of the water as they see fit, guiding and shaping the flow. This gives rocks the impression that they have power over the water. Trouble is, rocks slowly get warn away by the water. It takes years, decades, even ages, but eventually the water eats the rocks away to go where it truly wants to go. The harder a rock tries to force the water against it's will, the more violently and destructively the water breaks free when the rocks finally weaken.

Some can't sit still and wait for the rocks to wear away. They are the fire. They burn, burst and explode to get their way. Sometimes they blow the rocks out of the way of the river, sometimes they dump new loads of rocks in it's path. Trouble with fire is it can rarely be controlled, and in turn it's almost always the rocks that benefit from fire's action. Nowadays, the politicians are aware of this, and attempt to control and manipulate the fire to get them where they need to be to properly control the water. Trouble is, fire always serves it's own goals, and will burn and destroy until those goals are met. Fire can not be controlled or contained, and can only be extinguished if the people themselves take notice and flow over the flames. Some water evaporates in the process, but in the end the water still rules.

Now the sad part, at least to me, is that there are some who don't partake in the constant struggle of fire, water and rock. They are the writers, the musicians, the journalists, and the artists - in our metaphor they are the air. We float above the conflict, judging and analyzing, making noise about it but ultimately failing to effect anything except on the most minute of scales. Like the water we follow a flow, but we drift above the strife, determined to follow our own path. We often wish we could change the greater flow, but we lack the ability to stand fast against the current and become a rock. This isn't to say we don't care about the conflict below, but we ultimately know we can create little more than noise. We echo what we see below and hope that the other players see it too, at least enough to take charge of the power they wield and make a difference in the lives of all. Even this humble goal effects little, as if we catch the attention of the water, they simply join with us for a period, making noise and causing a ruckus but eventually returning to the flow they have always followed.

We also can't float forever. Eventually we get pulled into the water, realize we need to make a living and be part of society. Occasionally we get directed by rocks to do their bidding, or even become caught up in fire.

The moral of this story is life's a bitch for everyone, but it's even more of a bitch when all you can do is bitch about it.