Chile 🔥 cracks and contrasting beauty
In Santiago’s street the protests continue to grow, 1.2 million people were out peacefully on Friday—see video below. And, as you see above, there are abundant water cannons, teargas and trauma too.
Contrasts and paradoxes abound.
There are lots of agendas. The locals say the protester violence is very much an anarchist and/or self-interest minority with the metro price hike the surface letting loose years of power/disempowerment.
One of the chants is ‘we’ve woken up’ or words to this effect and it feels like a month (I can’t actually really remember being elsewhere) of crazy contrasts.
On Tuesday morning a different form of resilience flourished or rather, perhaps, just another representation of coming together to create and connect for better stages/worlds. People were out on the street with household brooms and dustpans cleaning up while the smoke, ash and teargas residue floated past.
Gorgeous moments too—as the afternoon and evening water cannon and gas grenades roared outside on the street—the hostel tables, accompanied by a ukulele, started singing Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah.
The contrasts are quite stark. I particularly noticed the absence of tension in myself when it was quiet with the community coming together to clean the debris in the mornings.
On the other hand, I was unlucky turning around when I saw protesters at noon on Monday. I arrived back at the hostel just as a roadblock had been set up. The water cannon tank came screaming down the street. Everyone scattered. I made a run for the hostel door but copped the spray (ouch! they are putting pepper concentrate in it) sideways. Full-on would be decidedly unpleasant…
Apparently, I can now consider myself an honorary Chilean 🙂
The funny thing is I mostly saw that it made me angry. It’s a dumb strategy, looters maybe ok?, and totally counterproductive fuelling the protests.
I’ve now left and that’s not without mixed feelings. It was clearly time to leave—one of the conference participant’s hotel burnt recently. All the same, it feels like abandoning people in a subtle emotional-globally-linking sense, ceasing to bear witness, being up close and assisting in connecting the very subtle forces that build (define?) common humanity.
And F**k. It’s bizarre—flying out of Santiago, Leonard Cohen’s Anthem playing, a glass of champagne, finally able to tweet the Chile story while waiting to take off. Holding back wells of tears, unsuccessfully.
Here’s hoping this fracturing, cracking globally and in Chile, is where the light gets in for new growth. Emergence from such vast diversities and disparities and that they help everyone—synthesizing transformations—into resilience for all.