Monday 21 February 2011

Revolutions of the hearts

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.  
(Letter to the Galatian Church, ch. 5)

Revolutions, like number one hits, look to the outsider like they come out of the blue. But the young anti-fascist organisers of Egypt's capital city have been working on this for three years. Much of the planning and preparation has been to do with self-disicpline and training in nonviolence. Gene Sharp's "Albert Einstein Institute" have copies of his most recent publication free to download in various languages including arabic and his strategies have been behind many nonviolent revolutions over the past few years.

Tactics used by the Egyptian protestors included setting up decoy protests while walking the streets elsewhere to set-up the protest-proper which the police didn't have the resources to halt before it was too late; standing arms-out infront of police and taking tear gas cannisters to the body, kneeling - half naked - before riot police (who then retreated in confusion).

That this has been a middle-class techo-friendly revolution has been much publicised. But even this is not entirely true - the protest that lit the blue touch paper began in a slum, albeit organised by middle-class agitators.

The real ingredients have been patience, nonviolence, self-sacrifice. Against such there can be no law.