Thursday, July 2, 2020

The Amenable and the Amok

America seems so crazy from afar. What a zoo of characters - spiritualists, humanists, peace-love-doveists, idealists of all sorts, libertarians, the practical, the scientific, the logical, the angry, the obstenate, the hysterical, the greedy, the violent, the confused, the pathetic, the noble, the honorable, the deplorable, the honest, the theives, the compassionate, the cruel, the hateful, the loving, the fearful, the arrogant, the humble, the enlightented, the stable, the neurotic, psychotic, sociophathic, weak, powerful, the base, the divine. It seems unmanagable. The zoo's cage doors are all opened and the zoo keeper ran off. What the heck's gonna happen next. Meanwhile, here from deep in my well looking up at sleepy Sanur, people seem so congenial, polite, harmonius, gliding along without much rancor. But then, they're just human full of various potential. The phrase "run amuck" comes to mind.  "from Malay amok ‘rushing in a frenzy’" (Oxford Languages). Early use was as a noun denoting a Malay in a homicidal frenzy." Indonesian is derived from Malay. Usually amuck or amok is thought of as one person freaking out in homicidal rage, but it's happened here in an island-wide blood bath against "communists" and Chinese in general in 1965. That was happening all over Indonesia, but I understand that Bali killed the highest percentage of any island. But it hasn't unleashed its greed, hate, and delusion on the whole world.

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