Going from Object to Fully Human; Where’s violence?

Who is not sculpted by the pressures of social conformity is outcast.

Who is not sculpted by the pressures of social conformity is outcast.

This may seem almost ridiculous to say this, but how do you tell a real person from an object that is not human?

An object doesn’t have wants, needs, desires of its own that interfere with your wants, needs, and desires in life.

You can put an object here, there and wherever you want it and there is no individual response. It simply does what you want. You make the rules. The object is moved by you.  

Real people, not slaves or objects, require negotiations, compromises, sacrifices, considerations other than a one way needs analyst and demand.

Consider how often someone is acting as if another person is not human but
treating them as an object.

If you ever had an agenda and you felt frustrated and angry at someone for not fulfilling your needs, wants and desires, it’s very possible you slid, ever so slightly, from seeing that other as a real, live human being to somewhat of an object – an object blocking you and you feel entitled enough to in some slight way think that person was meant to fulfill your own senses of being human.

Women weren’t kidding when they said they were sexual objects. The presence of rape as well as sexuality laws in general were not designed to accommodate their desires, wants and needs. Women, especially mothers, were perceived as not having needs necessary for laws. A good mother is still considered one who has no needs of her own. Balance is the ultimate goal to avoid anyone’s deprivation.

Why would we need laws to make sure we treat each other as humans to begin with unless something was already terribly wrong with how we treat each other? There are plenty of examples of how badly we treat each other as humans.

Well, a simple answer is what we all inherited. Historically, the relationships of kings and slaves created such a relationship. The hierarchy of superior authority and compliant submissive was born. We live with all the residue from that.

In our most intimate relationships, we commonly say someone is the object of our affections. We are not kidding. Making someone the ‘object’ of your affections is normal enough but brings along the residue and potential to experience that person as a thing. In this case, a thing that you use to negotiate or play around with your own emotions.

Another problem is that Maybe we’ve gotten too much advertising about products as a source for people’s happiness, and maybe we should question how much we are living out advertising’s messages. It’s only recently that children are getting media literacy lessons. For decades, there were none and most people just soaked up the media. Projecting your own emotions onto another human being has the results of a missing and distorted view of things. It’s a kind of experience as if one is looking through a one way mirror but in the wrong way. One sees and experiences a projection wall or blocking of a view, sometimes a reflection of oneself but you can not see the other person. The other person is there. Ever heard someone say, I want to be heard. I feel invisible. This involves a distortion about who we really are (on both sides of the relationship) in relationship to each other based on our own views, needs, wants and desires.

What we call ‘falling in love’ and the cascade of desires, wants and needs that culminate into romances and a hope in a future is ultimately the ephiphany of this treating someone as object decorated with a bombardment of expectations for our entire future lives. Expectations that we attach to that experience are loaded and at the same time is hardly ever questioned critically in the first stages of that type of relationship partially because it is so commonly understood as true ‘love’ itself which we know, at some level, that it isn’t. Wrong naming of our experiences. It’s not ‘true’ love at all. But we are told it is. Still We know it blinds us to actually seeing another person as they are and creates an altered state for our relationships. That altered state is not sustainable specifically because it is not built on the facts about who we are as humans and what is actually going on. It is a mass error in cultural teaching. It is culturally condoned, accepted and promoted – regardless of the terrible consequences that are part of it. Kind of like any advertising. You might think of it as false advertising for marriage.

We know that that initial stage of relationship doesn’t last but don’t understand it clearly. We know for the relationship to last we have to move into a deeper and different type of love. In the meantime, people get discouraged, disillusioned, depressed, or anxious to get ‘back’ to that state. They want to experience something they know ‘felt so good’. Unfortunately, that altered state is very dependent on treating people as objects with goals and the only way it can be sustained is if you have some humans willing to be objects. In some cases, people have been forced to be objects, sometimes under the ideas of martyrdom and that is one of the ways to accomplish it. Unfortunately, that means one person doesn’t get to be a person with wants, needs, and desires.

There has been some cultural remedy for this. The idea is often promoted that humans give up their wants, needs, and desires. In fact, having them has been called sinful. This is just another indication that humans have really lost their understandings about who we are a long time ago – if, in fact, we ever did understand.

But love and emotions are certainly not the only place we enter into relationships where people are treated more as objects than humans.

When we talk about people being human with human rights, we know rights come from ownership. If I own a car I have certain rights to it. Objects usually don’t have rights, but the rights belong to the owner of objects. In fact, ownership is a significant reason why humans have been degraded into objects.

When we talk about children listening and behaving, often it’s the same thing.
You are suppose to get this other human to follow your agenda without desires of their own.

When we talk about women being a sexual object or someone who is the object of your affections, women, especially mothers, are promoted to be compliant. This is often done by categorizing women or mothers into ‘good or bad’. For example, it use to be promoted that ‘bad’ mothers do not work outside the home. So many women complied.

When we talk about people’s labor as a commodity, statistics or company asset, or buyers as consumers and the market, we are only concerned with the needs of the company. Like chickens for the farmer, their needs of chickens are no longer theirs. Farmers meet the needs of chickens based on their own purpose of the chicken’s existence on the farm. Chickens exist for collecting eggs or the ‘meat’. The meat of the chicken is no longer theirs.

When militaries use the term ‘collateral’ for enemy deaths, and killing is the goal of the job, it is almost impossible to consider that other humans needs, wants and desires. Name calling, twisting language and other tactics are taught so that a human being can ‘learn’ to see another human as something than a human like himself.

When we are forced to choke on corporation’s computerized and mass produced customer service, and we give our time to save the time and money of the corporate owners, our own needs are systematized not for our own advantage and to the freefall disintegration of good customer service.

When we are taught to not have basic needs but to play a martyr whether perceived virtuous by Christians or perceived evil as Islam, for example, we are twisting perspective to avoid seeing the other side of our one way mirrors. Only in such a way can there ever be ‘religious’ wars.

When we are being railroaded to submit to laws that do not incorporate the assurance of basic human needs to survive nor do we have a voice in creating those laws, we are bordering (if not going full blown) into treating a mass group people as objects. Killing is the result.

Killing is the ultimate result and price we pay for the privileges of treating another as an object. But suffering is way more in abundance with this human treatment. It’s time we take this mass suffering out from behind our one way mirrors and consider exactly how we treat each other as humans and why.

There’s much that could be written about all the variations and the overall mass production of people as objects into numbers, categories and stereotypes. This all can’t be addressed in one short writing.

Our latest technologies, which is essentially image and text production create these conditions by how they intercept, disconnect and recreate human interactions. Image technology itself causes us more complications on how we treat another seeing each other less. We don’t see each other in real time and space connected to an environment and its circumstances. We therefore can fictionalize anyone at any time by our image and text production. The technology allows us to be free from time and space constraints that always existed for human relationships. You actually had to be with someone to get to know them and people were clear about who people were based on the time spent with them. Now We rely on snapshots and texts and move forward as if we know someone by specific identifiers we assign to them. This further distorts people into what we create them to be before we even meet them. And our senses are both blurred and distorted by what we learn through our modern technology. We just assume what is created through media is real more than we have time to know otherwise.

This use to only happen to the famous who were highlighted in media as celebrity or criminal. Both accounts ultimately produced a one sided version of a human being.

Just like we idolize and fictionalize people as celebrities creating an image and story that isn’t the real person we can now do this with anyone we have media relationships with. And we know it. Most famous people will tell you straight out that their image isn’t who they really are. For some, they find it highly problematic. Others find it rewarding for their lives.

We get too much yet too little and imbalances of information about people.  

We are now having relationships that burden people with the responsibility to be objects for another’s needs in ways that never existed.

Think of online dating as an easy example. It’s like buying a car. You decide what is on your list about yourself and what you want and you advertise it. You seek a person as if you are shopping for an object. Online dating doesn’t count for the factors that make humans alive and that is the constant changing dynamics of being alive.

An appropriate balance of needs is missing. Often the basics are lost in the process.

It dehumanizes us further.

Many people find relationships difficult to maintain. But why we see relationships as ‘so hard’ is because we’ve been taught in a system that makes relationships difficult and teaches us to think that easy comes by being and having objects to the superior and more worthy humans with special privileges. It’s the results of valuing King-slave relations or at least, perpetuating habits that were born in such places of value. An extreme of imbalance – where one has overabundance and the other has nothing for themselves and then it switches. Like a see saw.

It’s part of our collective inheritance from historical violence because violence in many forms is what maintains it.

The very framework and ideas that some people are inferior and not fully human (for a storm of reasons) has grown in new ways.

Essentially, we’ve been taught errors if we want different outcomes.

We’ve been taught to expect things or not expect things. We are entitled to them or not entitled to them from others. To behave specific ways as rules of relationships exists. It’s not just about the ownership of things people accumulate because of wealth. It’s that there are ways we treat people that are owners and different ways we treat people that are not owners. In early America, you had to be an owner to be a citizen

It’s no accident because at one time those expectations of the rich, that accumulation of wealth, the imbalanced were created and met by force – by violence. Violence induced behaviors. Gentleness, then, is the opposing force for such imbalance.

Now we operate with those expectations and the direct violence is no longer necessarily. It’s buried in history but plays out in our everyday lives.  But we are a society in conflict and unsettled about all this and at the core about violence in relationships. We barely notice that we are systematized to treat people as numbers, as letters, as labels in categories – all which intercepts our view of them in their reality of needs, wants and desires. 

Relationships aren’t so hard once you really come to see people as HUMAN with needs, wants, desires of their own and you free your relationships to GIVE that needed space to them to BE human, not objects, not stereotyped. To do that it facilitates them to have their needs WHILE you give space to meet your own needs, wants and desires, too.

Then with needs met, relationships with others are harmonious not in conflict.

But too many people are hurt. It is the harm already enacted that people are reacting with. Our social media lives on the battles that use one person as object against each other’s needs, wants and desires. The conversations move from right to wrong in moral terms because right and wrong people get treated differently. If you become the ‘right’ person, then you are privileged to get your needs met at the expense of the ‘wrong’ person. Needs are not the focus in the battles at all, but a consequence of who ‘wins’.

When you don’t crunch a relationship into tight spaces of conflicting energies along with rules and ideas with ‘force’ and the need to ‘win’, but instead know that needs are and can be met for everyone by communities that respond to all people deserving of being more than someone’s object the results in relationships are harmonious. People are content when their needs are met. Imagine a harmonious world. It’s possible. It’s absolutely possible.

We are a society still in development of the freedom and safety that the United States promised us. We are in confusion, mixed feelings, mixed compliance with resistance to obedience to a King, CEO, or any other tyranny – yet we are far deep into such conditions already. We have multiple levels of government that no other country in the past had to endure.

We are in a world where authority as is structured is designed to treat people as objects because it is the authority that determines and defines the objects’ needs to start with. A person of any age is forced to negate their own humanness for survival that benefits more powerful people instead of respecting ourselves as real humans in our actual human nature.

Why do I know this? I’m as guilty as anyone. I’ve lived long enough and questioned what often is never questioned. I spend years learning about the images humans mak. I did portraits of humans. I am an artist and I studied my subjects. And I see the potential of what humans can create….and what has already been created.


One thought on “Going from Object to Fully Human; Where’s violence?

  1. Excellent piece. “Balance is the ultimate goal to avoid anyone’s deprivation.” — I couldn’t agree more, same with this: “Gentleness, then, is the opposing force for such imbalance.” — so simple, yet so difficult to understand, let alone embody, for sick cultures such as as the colonist one.

    Liked by 1 person

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