slavery - quotes and descriptions to inspire creative writing
The patriarchal world grew to ensure the slavery of women. Paradoxically, loving and cherishing women - being a real gentlemen - is the opposite concept because it is one of protection. It is thus no coincidence, my dear Watson, that the age of female progress went arm in arm with the age or romance and chivalry.
Let us use the lens of history upon slavery to enlighten paths forwards to a better future. Let the insights into the suffering of ancestors increase our focus on "the injustices of now" that exist globally, seeing the pain of every version of modern slavery in all its forms and taking on a stoic resolve to make our world a more loving place of greater cooperation for people alive now and for those in generations yet unborn.
In the Barbary slave trade (1500 - 1800) it is estimated that one to one and a quarter million Europeans were enslaved by North Africans. They were kidnapped from coastal towns from Italy to the Netherlands, to Ireland and South West England - decimating these communities, capturing men, women and children. Many new slaves were required annually to replace those who died, escaped or converted to Islam. Istanbul's additional trade of white European slaves may add an additional two and half million to this number (1450-1700). The kidnapping and enslavement of Russians, Ukrainians and Poles add another two million (1468-1694). And this slave trade grew out of a region that had for a long time had an internal slave trade. Indeed, it did not fully cease until the start of colonialism when the Europeans began to take control of the regions that had once enslaved them.
No son of the soil can own what he cannot touch or see, and none can see the soul. Whilst you can hold these arms and break this skin, cut until blood runs thick, I am not yours. Do you think the wind only blows for you? That the sun shines only for you? All you are is a bully, a tyrant under the eyes of God and I'd rather be me than you - for you will have to make amends and your sins are many. The bitter irony is that though my body is chained, my mind is more free than yours, less fearful. If I can be noble under these pains I have nought to fear upon death - but you, addicted to comfort and power - you should be afraid.
Were you to come to me as a brother I would give you everything, my heart, my labour, my soul. Instead you wrap me in iron and beat with a stick that which I would have willingly surrendered with a loving heart. In doing so you cripple yourself, come closer to being a human snake with narrowed eyes and forked tongue. In the beginning you beat me with a look of guilt and horror upon your face, now there is only pleasure. In truth you are only a master of a hell on earth, one you forge for your own greed and selfish ways. Under those dusty boots are the bones, blood and tears of your betters. You think it foolish to stand meek, but you are wrong, for it is we that inherit the earth.
In the Victorian era the "employers" paid wages, yet charged for lodgings and food via the "cottage system" and the "truck shops." They worked from age seven, eight or nine, sometimes younger in the lace industry, twelve, fourteen or sixteen hours a day until they were too sick and deformed. At which point there was no welfare system and death awaited. As such people referred to themselves as "white slaves" and saw no difference between their lot and slavery, the wealth of nations built on their backs, their blood turned to gold in the hands of others. And so, in this spirit of competition, the workers of Germany drove down the wages of the workers in England and vice versa, each starving in their own personal hell. And if we step back from this slavery, if we remove the money and then ask what we see... we see domination of the many by the few. The alternative is liberty, society organised by those with the ability, not as power but as service and the necessities of life free for all, no money and the triangle of power inverted so that there are no slaves, only wise guidance, advice and freedom with true democracy. This is leadership more as the Buddhist monk than a European style royal. If you can learn to see the movement of goods and labour without any reference to money, you soon see the truth. This is why we must choose love and cooperation over money, it is our only hope to build a world worthy of humanity and the wonderful species of Earth.
They treated us no better than cattle or pigs. They'd encourage us to have children and then rip the family apart, selling the family members to different plantations. Children never saw their parents again. We were fed rations only enough to keep us from starving and it was the same meagre fare every day. If you didn't work hard enough you got whipped, if you made mistakes you got whipped and heaven help you if they caught you trying to run away. They'd whip you until your back was a bloody mass of open flesh in front of everyone else. Sometimes the masters would rape the young girls to 'breed' with them and then sell their babies. Like I said. Worse than cattle. We slept on bare wooden floors with thin blankets and rose at the crack of dawn to work all day.
In slavery my body is a cage for a spirit you cannot touch. You prefer those whose eyes have dimmed, submissive to your abuse and hate those whose eyes burn with the knowledge of your inferiority. A true man is a man of love and integrity, you are neither, an empty shell pretending to be human. Were I to draw your spirit animal from your snarled jaw it would be the serpent, and mine... mine would be a lion not bearing a single mark from your whip.
The sun beat down without mercy and all the while the white man sat behind us on his horse, whip in hand. We picked as fast as we could, anyone not fulfilling their quota would get a whipping. He wore a wide brimmed hat and just watched while children cooked in the sun before him, still hungry from their breakfasts but knowing that if the ate their paltry lunch now they would find it even harder to make it through to their evening meal. Then tall Ben started the singing and as we sung the music was a salve to our troubled souls. Sometimes we sung the song that would help guide us to the north and freedom, but the white man never understood the meaning. It gave us strength, just the idea of hope, the idea of a life away from the whip.
In our western lifestyles we are crippled by a forced dissociation of the mind. We "believe" we stopped slavery but we actually know that we did not, we simply exported it. We are the beneficiaries of slaves in industries from seafood to chocolate plantations and fabrics. Our civilization is built on the bones of angels and I am here to tell you that everyone of those slaves suffering and dying is directly linked to the divine creator and so He is suffering in pain too. How can He not? But the disconnect that makes us "sleep" as the world is destroyed is not limited to slavery.
We know our world is dying but we buy hundreds of products we don't need - encouraged to dismiss alternatives as "crazy" or "hippy nonsense." As we carry on, struggling with dissociated minds, fuelling the wanton global destruction with our purchases, the elites laugh and keep our cash rolling in. They make no wealth, they steal it from us and control us with fear and distraction. If you want to save the planet, if you want to live a truly noble life, get away from mainstream media. As Jesus said, "you cannot worship God and money." You must choose. God is Love. You can Love the world and your fellow humans, fellow creatures, or you can suffer a system of greed in which the most corrupted and debased humans win power over us and make hell on earth.
Change is so simple, so empowering, so beautiful and fulfilling. Only buy products from virtuous cycles - that means ones that benefit people and planet. Buy nothing you don't really need. Buy local. Don't wrap your vegetables and groceries in disposable plastics. Take your money out of a big five and to the most ethical co-op you can. Trade and barter. Buy fair trade. Don't be fooled by companies that "green wash." We need radical changes to our system that only allow virtuous cycles to flourish. We can't just tweak our politics, we need a whole new system and it starts with you and me. The future is amazing, awesome. Come with me. We can heal.
Found in Are you awake yet? - first draft, authored by .
There could have been a reality where we toiled side by side, where each worked with a heart of love to benefit the other - instead you prefer power with a raised whip. There could have been a way for us to laugh and sing, to exchange the prettiest of our ways and learn from the errors of the other. Instead you show me that you own my soul with nickels and dimes, rate my effort in a ledger written by mortal hand. It means less than the bark of a dog. You have killed children of God, his sons, his daughters - praying will never be enough and there is not a place you can run to.
The years stretched out like a road through sand, the landscape barren, and every step Isha wished was her last. Her skin that had been broken so many times by the whip was a gnarled map of her pain. The sunlight she had loved as a child in her mother's arms was nothing but a curse, for feeling it meant her heart was still beating. She envied the fall leaves curling brown to the earth; surely the Lord would take her away some day soon, someday when the whip sent her blood into the soil.
The first racism I have found, with the word "race" being used, was "white on white." In the Victorian era the working class (about seventy five percent of the British population) and the Irish immigrants were spoken of as other "races." It was considered by many appropriate to employ them on low wage, rent a pig-pen or or other dirty and poorly built home for them to live in and sell them whatever poor quality and amount of food they could afford. The first day they didn't work was the first day they didn't eat. In Manchester at the time fifty seven percent of children died before they were five. Entire families lived in a single room and, for the Irish, twenty to a tiny two room house with people in a dank cellar was the norm. Disease and hunger was rampant. Their deaths were predictable and seen as removing surplus population of "lower races" - they were all white. Victorian society was "all against all" - all out competition, survival of the fittest... and perhaps against this background it is obvious that Darwin thought humans and nature were this way... missing that we are a social species, that cooperation, gentleness and emotional sensitivity is an intelligence and not the opposite.
In terms of generations this was recent history. Trauma travels down the generations. So the wealthy white people in America abusing and murdering black slaves, was a cruel and ignorant extension of a cruel and ignorant society. It should be said that there are always good people in the richer areas with privilege who do their best to rescue and create fairness, such as those who helped create the health service and welfare systems... and there are those who fight their way up only to abuse those that were once their kin... making them culpable for their own disadvantage. It is time for the "good" from all nations to rise and show love and empathy is our way, that we refuse to keep on with this Victorian invention that is racism and see the inborn rights of every soul.