The Say-so

If you have power and are in power then you have the say-so over various things including access to and use of resources, one of these being of course, money. Holding the purse strings allows some measure of control over how things are spent / used. It means that you can determine the direction, it may not mean that you set it, but you can choose between. You have the say-so. What you want to happen generally does, in the spheres of human endeavour. Try as we might we cannot control nature nor the workings of the universe, but there are many things we can. Some like to have this say-so. Some are control-freaks and seek to micro-manage things and others. This control can be strategic in the sense of there being some strategy or other which may or may not require the use of manipulation. We have heard recently of people, unwilling to provide sexual favours, being black-listed in Hollywood.

There is an inherent problem with “control”. In that the tighter you squeeze and enforce control, the more likely is it to go wrong. That which one controls might be thought of as the system, squeeze the system too tightly and the system leaks. That which is outside the system is no longer susceptible to the control parameters. You may control the system but not that which has leaked out. One has the say-so over the system. If you are a fisherman, you have a net and in that net, you have fish, some fish escape the net. If they are people, they are what Dōgen Zenji calls tōdatsu. Once the fish has slipped the net, there is no control over it.

I personally am unsure as to why some are so obsessed with having the say-so over the lives of others. It is not something which appeals to me, yet I can see this at work. Maybe they like moving pawns around on the chessboard of life? Who can say? There are a few who simply cannot resist trying to interfere in the lives of others. Perhaps this allows them, by being busy, to not examine their own lives. This meddling in the affairs of others is a pass-time, irresistible to some. For some reason they imagine that they know what the lives of others need, often without asking, perhaps God tells them.

Once something has been squeezed out of the system it is of no concern to the system, unless the system needs it back, for whatever reason. A fish will not be overly keen on jumping back into the net. When one is outside a system, one no longer has sight of what goes on in the system nor of where its control parameters are at. The system does its thing and the fish simply swims. What goes on in the system is of little concern to the fish, that is system business and not fish business. However, the system may still wish to exert control over the fish. Even though it has been squeezed out of the net. The system does not want to let go of the fish, it still seeks to control it.

People like to have the say-so in order to express their will and if necessary (as it appears to them) inflict it upon others. They want the system to do their bidding. They might have control parameters like access to movie roles, salary and publicity. The power of these parameters might be high, as levers they can be effective, they may not however be universal. This my will be done, is not uncommon amongst control-junkies and control-freaks. In this respect manipulation can have unforeseen consequences, which includes a loss of fish. You may have plenty of fish, but not the fish you want but as they say, there are plenty of fish in the sea. Control can and does lead to relationship breakdown, it gets hard to breathe in a net, as the control is tightened. Many a control-freak has driven a partner or potential partner away.

This will thing is weird…it is about control and say-so…it is not about freedom. Why are people so very scared that they feel they have to try to control everything?