Here are a series of articles to help you better understand how to stand strong in times of oppression.
Article 1: Define Your Own Story
What is oppression? Oppression is when someone else defines your story. Oppression is when someone shapes your life against your will and needs. Ultimately resisting oppression is rooted in learning how to shape your own story.
If you are unable to define yourself how will you ever resist other people oppressing your life?
Article 2: Don’t Wait for Superman
We cannot wait to be saved by others. We have to accept when the fight is ours to protect ourselves. We have to be strong enough to work at improving the world around us.
Article 3: Pause and Collect yourself
The first real action comes before a physical step. Before beginning any serious action a person should pause.
Here is a guide I wrote on how to pause first: The Secret to Solving Problems.
In the pause you can evaluate and get yourself stronger for all future steps.
Once you pause into awareness then you can work towards fixing the problems at hand. All too many people leap into the problem assuming they know everything. All too often false assumptions will lead to your defeat or cause a person to waste energy on the wrong steps.
The journey of a thousand miles starts with the pause to check the map.
Then you take the first step in the right direction.
Article 4: Stand Up in Kindness
As we learn to stand up for ourselves, we also need to learn how to be strong in our essence. It is important to learn how to fight with kindness. If a person doesn’t fight with kindness they will lose themselves in the very fight to protect themselves. Sadly people often become what they fight. If you fight with kindness you will not risk becoming like your opponent.
Also a person who doesn’t know themselves is easily defeated by an opponent through fear and other negative tactics.
A Taoist lesson of losing order and one’s essence.
There was a terrible drought in that part of China where Richard Wilhelm was living. After all the ways to bring rain that the people knew had been tried, they decided to send for a rainmaker. This interested Wilhelm very much, and he was careful to be there when the rainmaker arrived. the man came in a covered cart, a small, wizened, old man who sniffed the air with evident distaste as he got out of the cart, and asked to be left alone in a small cottage outside the village; even his meals were to be laid down outside the door. Nothing was heard from him for three days, then it not only rained, but there was also a big downfall of snow, unknown at that time of year. Very much impressed, Wilhelm sought the rainmaker out and asked him how it was that he could make rain, and even snow. The rainmaker replied, “I have not made the snow; I am not responsible for it.” Wilhelm insisted that there was a terrible drought until he came, and then after three days they even had quantities of snow. The old man answered, “Oh, I can explain that. You see, I come from a place where the people are in order; they are in Tao; so the weather is also in order. But directly I got here, I saw the people were out of order and they also infected me. So I remained alone until I was once more in Tao and then, of course, it snowed.”
-Told by Carl Jung of a experience from Richard Wilhelm.
The simple truth is we cannot change the world around us if we are within personal turmoil. To resist oppression requires a person to be within their virtue and stand strong as themselves.
Article 5: Use Awareness to Prevent from Being Fooled
Once you successfully begin to resist oppression and abuse, your opponent will then shift tactics. They will work to fool you to letting your guard down. No one is immune to getting fooled by another. You will be attacked on many levels. You will be judged in ways to undercut your stance. Learn to release judgment and you will withstand attacks upon your nature and virtue. This is why it is so important to be in your essence. If you work kindly, if you know your essence: it’s then harder for another person to fool you through insecurity and doubt.
Article 6: Stepping Ahead
Life requires actions. The path of resisting oppression is a long one. So learn the steps within the path of resisting oppression.
Article 7: Strive to Thrive!
Don’t only survive against our times. Push to thrive through the times.
Article 8: Pace and Rest
Find moments to rest within and moments to heal within. A person who resists only to fight only wears themselves down into the ground.
Article 9: Trusting When to Leap.
Trust to your intuition when to act. Yet always have more than one option for how to work against the times.
Article 10: Break Out of Routine
Avoid living the normal life. Be willing to be different. Keep the connections to life around you active and be your own person.