Wednesday, October 15, 2008
I sit in deep reflection tonight...I have just returned from walking in the moon's light. It's beauty immersed me in my sadness and disappointment in myself. I spoke to Sister Moon; I begged and beseeched her to intercede with the goddess to guide me back to my Self...to control of the monkey mind, always running here-and-there, so hard to corral, to master. The 6th chapter of the Bhagavad Gita echoes within in my angst:
6:5 Reshape yourself through the power of your will; never let yourself be degraded by self-will. The will is the only friend of the Self, and the will is the only enemy of the Self.
6:6 To those who have conquered themselves, the will is a friend. But it is the enemy to those who have not found the Self within them.
6:7 The supreme Reality stands revealed in the consciousness of those who have conquered themselves. They live in peace, alike in cold and heat, pleasure and pain, praise and blame.
This is my heart's desire; may I reclaim the energy to begin again, to move toward greater consciousness and become the master of the mind, as I conquer my will.
As Sister Moon is my witness, I will prevail.
Om Shanthi, Shanthi, Shanthi.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
"It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted in a profoundly sick society." --Krisnamurti
This is in stark contrast to my prior blog entry. Though difficult, this information is so important and extremely radical, but it needs to be contemplated deeply. In watching I wanted to say "NO!;" I wanted to reject the premises and fall back into the comfort of known, conditioned thinking...but I KNOW in the deepest part of me that the status quo is very, very sick and needs to be healed. So I watched on.
These two video links are NOTHING if not totally mind-blowing. And then the long text below is based upon the Venus Project, the utopian *dream* of Jacque Fresco.
Discussing the monetary system and the downward spiral of society...and a radical solution.
The first work, also deeply thought-provoking: Zeitgeist --
THE VENUS PROJECT
The Goal -- The Means is the End
We intend to restore the fundamental necessities and environmental awareness of the species through the avocation of the most current understandings of who and what we truly are, coupled with how science, nature and technology (rather than religion, politics and money) hold the keys to our personal growth, not only as individual human beings, but as a civilization, both structurally and spiritually. The central insights of this awareness is the recognition of the Emergent and Symbiotic elements of natural law and how aligning with these understandings as the bedrock of our personal and social institutions, life on earth can and will flourish into a system which will continuously grow in a positive way, where negative social consequences, such as social stratification, war, biases, elitism and criminal activity will be constantly reduced and, idealistically, eventually become nonexistent within the spectrum of human behavior itself.
This possibility is, of course, very difficult for most humans to consider, for we have been conditioned by society to think that crime, corruption and dishonesty is "the way it is" and that there will always be people who want to abuse, hurt and take advantage of others. Religion is the largest promoter of this propaganda, for the "us and them" or "good and evil" mentality promotes this false assumption.
The reality is that we live in a society that produces Scarcity. The consequence of this scarcity is that human beings must behave in self preserving ways, even if it means they have to cheat and steal in order to get what they want. Our research has concluded that Scarcity is one of the most fundamental causes of aberrant human behavior, while also leading to complex forms of neurosis in other ways. A statistical look at drug addition, crime and incarceration statistics, finds that poverty and unhealthy social conditions comprise the life experience of those who engage in such behavior.
Human beings are not good or bad... they are running, forever changing compositions of the life experience(s) that influence them. The "quality" of a human being ( if there was such a thing ) is directly related to the upbringing and thus belief systems they have been conditioned into.
This simple reality has been grossly overlooked and today people primitively think that competition, greed and corruption are "hardwired" elements of human behavior and, in turn, we must have prisons, police and hence a hierarchy of differential control in order for society to deal with these "tendencies". This is totally illogical and false.
The bottom line is that in order to change things for the better fundamentally, you must begin to address root causes. The current societies system of "punishment" is outmoded, inhumane, and unproductive. When a serial killer is caught, most people jump up and down and scream for the death of that person. This is backwards. A truly sane society, which understands what we are and how our value systems are created, would take the individual and learn the reasons behind his or her violent actions. This information would then go to a research department which considers how to stop such conditions from occurring through education.
It is time to stop the patchwork. It is time to begin a new social approach which is updated to present day knowledge. Sadly, society today is still largely based on outmoded, superstitious dispositions and resolutions.
It is also important to point out that there are no utopias or endings. All evidence points to perpetual change on all levels. In turn, it is our personal actions everyday of our lives that mold and perpetuate the social systems we have in place. Yet, paradoxically, it is also our environmental influences which create our perspectives and hence world views. Therefore, true change will come not only from adjusting your personal understandings and decisions, but equally from changing the social structures that influence these understandings and decisions.
Protest/Political movements are dead; the elite power systems are little effected in the long run by such means at this point in time. We must move beyond these 'establishment rebellions' and work with a tool much more powerful:
We will stop supporting the system, while constantly advocating knowledge, peace, unity and compassion. We cannot "fight the system. Hate, anger and the 'war' mentality is a failed means for change, for it perpetuates the same tool the corrupt, established power systems use to maintain control to begin with.
The Distortion and Paralysis
When we understand that all systems are Emergent and constantly in a state of evolution, along with the reality that we are all Symbiotically connected to nature and each other in the most simple yet profound way, forcing the realization that our personal integrity is only as high as the integrity of the rest of society, we then see how twisted and backwards our social establishments are and how their perpetuation is largely the cause of the social instability in society. For example, the Monetary System has been long deemed a positive force in society due to its claim to produce incentive and progress. In actually, the monetary system has become a vehicle for division and totalitarian control.
It is the ultimate form of "Divide and Conquer" for at its very core are the assumptions that (1) We must fight each other in order to survive. (2) Humans must have this reward "Incentive" to do anything meaningful.
As far as Number 1 (We must fight each other in order to survive.), this characteristic of 'competition' in the system guarantees corruption in society on every level, for the basis is "us against them". Many argue that the "free market system" is good... but it is corrupt in the modern day due to bad policies, favoritism, bailouts, etc. They assume that if a "pure" free market was allowed to flourish then it would be okay. This is false, for what you are seeing today IS the Freemarket at work, with all its differential advantage and corruption. No laws will ever stop the insider trading, collusion, monopoly, labor abuse, pollution, planned obsolescence or the like... this is what the competition based system produces without fail, for it is based on the premise of taking advantage of others for profit. Period.
We must begin to transition out of these oppressive ideals and move towards a system which is "designed" to support human beings... not force them to fight in order to survive. As far as Number 2, (Humans must have this reward "Incentive" to do anything meaningful.) this is just a sad and an incredibly negative perspective of the human being in general. To assume that a person must be "structurally motivated" or hence "forced" into doing anything, is just absurd. Think back to when you were a child and had no idea what money even was. You played, were curious and did many things... why? Because you wanted to. However, as time goes on in our system, that natural curiosity and self-motivation is striped away from people, as they are force to conform to the specialized, compartmentalized, nearly predefined labor system in order to survive. This, in turn, often creates a natural rebellion within the person due to the forced obligation, and this is how we came up with "leisure" and "work" separations. The laziness assumed to exist by the monetary system proponents (who claim it produces incentive) do not recognize this. In a true society, people would follow there natural inclinations and work to contribute to society not because they are "paid" for it, but because they have a greater awareness which recognizes that contributing to society helps them just as much as everyone else. This is the heightened state of awareness we hope to communicate. Your reward for contributing to society is the well being of that society... which, in turn, furthers your well being.
Now, putting things into perspective, it is important to understand that our world is currently run, undeniably, by a small group of dominant men in high positions of those institutions which are most dominant in society- Business and Finance. The establishment of government is in tandem with the influence and power of corporations and banks. The life blood is money, which is, in fact, an illusion that now has little relevance to society and serves as a tool for manipulation and division along a kind of social organization that guarantees elitism, crime, war and social stratification.
Simultaneously, individuals are taught that being "correct" is what creates their value as human beings. This state of being "correct" is directly related to the prevailing values of society itself. Therefore, those who accept and support the social system's views are considered "normal", while those who disagree are considered "abnormal" or even "subversive". Whether it is the dogma of a unique social tradition, or the alignment with a worldwide establishment religion, the basis is the same: Intellectual Materialism.
As we realize that knowledge and hence our institutions are always evolving, we see that any belief system which claims to "know" anything, without allowing for dispute, is a failed perspective. Religion, with its foundation in faith, is the king of this distortion, as it claims to know something definitively about the most complex and elusive origins of human kind, and this simply is not possible in an emergent universe.
That being said, it is then realized that equally as dangerous as the Establishment Power Structures, are the people who have been conditioned to completely accept the static understandings put forth by these systems... therefore becoming: "Self Appointed Guardians of the Status Quo". This applies to every system, especially political, financial and religious systems. Since people's identities become associated with the doctrines of a Country, Religion or Business ethic, it often becomes very difficult for a person to change, for his or her identity has become combined with the ideologies which have been imposed upon them. Therefore, they perpetuate the doctrine of the institution, simply to maintain their personal integrity, as they see it.
We must break this cycle, for it paralyses our growth not only as individuals, but as a society.
The Truth and Transition
Once we understand that the integrity of our personal existences are directly related to the integrity of the earth, life and all other human beings, we then have our path predefined for us. In turn, once we realize that it is science, technology and hence human creativity which creates progress in our lives, we are then able to recognize what our true priorities are for social and personal growth and progress. These points denoted, we can then see that Religion, Politics and the Money/Competition based Labor system are outdated modes of social operation, which must now be addressed and outgrown. Our avocation is to achieve a social system which operates without money or politics, while allowing superstition to work itself out as education flourishes. It isn't the right of any person to tell another what to believe, for no human has a full understanding of anything. However, if we pay attention to the natural processes of life, we then see how we can align with nature and thus our path becomes more clear.
For example, many people are worried about population growth on the planet, while very spooky comments by despotic figures like Henry Kissinger claim that some kind of "reduction" is needed. This is, of course, very scary. However, the real question remains: Is population growth really that bad? The answer is that from a scientific perspective the earth can handle many, many times more people if need be, once high technology is harnessed. 70% of our planet is water and cities in the sea ( one of many projects by Jacque Fresco ) are the next step. In turn, education about life operations will inform people as to the ramifications of their reproductive interests and population growth will naturally slow as people begin to realize how they are related to the planet and its carrying capacity.
In fact, the only true "government" that can possibly exist is the earth and its resources. From there, all possibilities can be assessed. This is why an intellectual unification of all countries is needed, for the most important information we as a species can have is a full, highly detailed assessment of what we have on this planet. Just as you would examine the land and resources of an acre of land to see what you could do or grow on it, this is what needs to happen with the planet in order to optimize what we are capable of as a species, resource wise.
Of course, many who consider the ideas presented above will often ask: "How can we do this considering the distorted value systems which are currently in operation.? How do we make such a move or transition?" This is, of course, the most difficult question. The answer: We have to start somewhere. There are many things that can be done by a single person or community that can begin to shape this vision. The most important step is education.
On March 15th 2009, ( or "ZDAY" as it was called in 2008 ) there will be a worldwide action day to expand awareness of this sociological direction. Our hope is to have regional meeting in as many cities, states & countries as possible. We here at thezeitgeistmovement.com will work to provide materials in every language we can, while doing whatever we can to help each subgroup. We will never ask for money. We are here to help, for we understand one central truth that has been lost for a long, long time:
The more you give- the more you get.
Thank you for your help.
-- Jacque Fresco (industrial designer and social engineer)
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
As I said this morning to the thanksgiving community with whom I shared this...Rob Brezsny's piece SCREAMS to be shared...and shared...and shared. And I like it having a permanent residence in my *blog home:*
GLORY IN THE HIGHEST
Thousands of things go right for you every day, beginning the moment you wake up. Through some magic you don’t fully understand, you’re still breathing and your heart is beating, even though you’ve been unconscious for many hours. The air is a mix of gases that’s just right for your body’s needs, as it was before you fell asleep.
You can see! Light of many colors floods into your eyes, registered by nerves that took God or evolution or some process millions of years to perfect. The interesting gift of these vivid hues comes to you courtesy of an unimaginably immense globe of fire, the sun, which continually detonates nuclear reactions in order to convert its body into light and heat and energy for your personal use.
Did you know that the sun is located at the precise distance from you to be of perfect service? If it were any closer, you’d fry, and if it were any further away, you’d freeze. Here’s another one of the sun’s benedictions: It appears to rise over the eastern horizon right on schedule every day, as it has since long before you were born.
Do you remember when you were born, by the way? It was a difficult miracle that involved many people who worked hard on your behalf. No less miraculous is the fact that you have continued to grow since then, with millions of new cells being born inside you to replace the old ones that die. All of this happens whether or not you ever think about it.
On this day, like almost every other, you have awoken inside a temperature-controlled shelter. You have a home! Your bed and pillow are soft and you’re covered by comfortable blankets. The electricity is turned on, as usual. Somehow, in ways you’re barely aware of, a massive power plant at an unknown distance from your home is transforming fuel into currents of electricity that reach you through mostly hidden conduits in the exact amounts you need, and all you have to do to control the flow is flick small switches with your fingers.
You can walk! Your legs work wonderfully well. Your heart circulates your blood all the way down to replenish the energy of the muscles in your feet and calves and thighs, and when the blood is depleted it finds its way back to your heart to be refreshed. This blessing recurs over and over again without stopping every hour of your life.
Your home is perhaps not a million-dollar palace, but it’s sturdy and gigantic compared to the typical domicile in every culture that has preceded you. The floors aren’t crumbling, and the walls and ceilings are holding up well, too. Doors open and close without trouble, and so do the windows. What skillful geniuses built this sanctuary for you? How and where did they learn their craft?
In your bathroom, the toilet is functioning perfectly, as are several other convenient devices. You have at your disposal soaps, creams, razors, clippers, tooth-cleaning accessories: a host of products that enhance your hygiene and appearance. You trust that unidentified scientists somewhere tested them to be sure they’re safe for you to use.
Amazingly, the water you need so much of comes out of your faucets in an even flow, with the volume you want, and either cold or hot as you desire. It’s pure and clean; you’re confident no parasites are lurking in it. There is someone somewhere making sure these boons will continue to arrive for you without interruption for as long as you require them.
Look at your hands. They’re astounding creations that allow you to carry out hundreds of tasks with great force and intricate grace. They relish the pleasure and privilege of touching thousands of different textures, and they’re beautiful.
In your closet are many clothes you like to wear. Who gathered the materials to make the fabrics they’re made of? Who imbued them with colors, and how did they do it? Who sewed them for you?
In your kitchen, appetizing food in secure packaging is waiting for you. Many people you’ve never met worked hard to grow it, process it, and get it to the store where you bought it. The bounty of tasty nourishment you get to choose from is unprecedented in the history of the world.
Your many appliances are working flawlessly. Despite the fact that they feed on electricity, which could kill you instantly if you touched it directly, you feel no fear that you’re in danger. Why? Your faith in the people who invented, designed, and produced these machines is impressive.
It’s as if there’s a benevolent conspiracy of unknown people that is tirelessly creating hundreds of useful things you like and need.
There’s more. Gravity is working exactly the way it always has, neither pulling on you with too much or too little force. How did that marvel ever come to be? By some prodigious, long-running accident? It doesn’t really matter, since it will continue to function with astounding efficiency whether or not you understand it.
Meanwhile, a trillion other elements of nature’s miraculous design are expressing themselves perfectly. Plants are growing, rivers are flowing, clouds are drifting, winds are blowing, animals are reproducing. The weather is an interesting blend of elements you’ve never before experienced in quite this combination. Though you may take it for granted, you relish the ever-shifting sensations of light and temperature as they interact with your body.
There’s more. You can smell odors and hear sounds and taste tastes, many of which are quite pleasing. You can think! You’re in possession of the extraordinary gift of self-awareness. You can feel feelings! Do you realize how improbably stupendous it is for you to have been blessed with that mysterious capacity? And get this: You can visualize an inexhaustible array of images, some of which represent things that don’t actually exist. How did you acquire this magical talent?
By some improbable series of coincidences or long-term divine plan, language has come into existence. Millions of people have collaborated for many centuries to cultivate a system for communication that you understand well. Speaking and reading give you great pleasure and a tremendous sense of power.
Do you want to go someplace that’s at a distance? You have a number of choices about what machines to use in order to get there. Whatever you decide—car, plane, bus, train, subway, ship, helicopter, or bike—you have confidence that it will work efficiently. Multitudes of people who are now dead devoted themselves to perfecting these modes of travel. Multitudes who are still alive devote themselves to ensuring that these benefits keep serving you.
Maybe you’re one of the hundreds of millions of people in the world who has the extraordinary privilege of owning a car. It’s a brilliant invention made by highly competent workers. Other skilled laborers put in long hours to extract oil from the ground or sea and turn it into fuel so you can use your car conveniently. The roads are drivable. Who paved them for you? The bridges you cross are potent feats of engineering. Do you realize how hard it was to fabricate them from scratch?
You’re aware that in the future shrinking oil reserves and global warming may impose limitations on your ability to use cars and planes and other machines to travel. But you also know that many smart and idealistic people are diligently striving to develop alternative fuels and protect the environment. And compared to how slow societies have been to understand their macrocosmic problems in the past, your culture is moving with unprecedented speed to recognize and respond to the crises spawned by its technologies.
As you travel, you might listen to music. Maybe you’ve got an MP3 player, a fantastic invention that has dramatically enhanced your ability to hear a stunning variety of engaging sounds at a low cost. Or maybe you have a radio. Through a process you can’t fathom, music and voices that originate at a distance from you have been converted into invisible waves that bounce off the ionosphere and down into your little machine, where they are transformed back into music and voices for you to enjoy.
Let’s say it’s 9:30 a.m. You’ve been awake for two hours, and a hundred things have already gone right for you. If three of those hundred things had not gone right—your toaster was broken, the hot water wasn’t hot enough, there was a stain on the pants you wanted to wear—you might feel that today the universe is against you, that your luck is bad, that nothing’s going right. And yet the fact is that the vast majority of everything is working with breathtaking efficiency and consistency. You would clearly be deluded to imagine that life is primarily an ordeal.
-- from the book PRONOIA IS THE ANTIDOTE FOR PARANOIA: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings_, by Rob Brezsny
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
How these gifted beings bring me joy and food for the soul and so much to contemplate beyond my mundane reality....Please listen with me now:
Because We Spill Not Only Milk
Because we spill not only milk
Knocking it over with an elbow
When we reach to wipe a small face
But also spill seed on soil we thought was fertile but isn't,
And also spill whole lives, and only later see in fading light
How much is gone and we hadn't intended it
Because we tear not only cloth
Thinking to find a true edge and instead making only a hole
But also tear friendships when we grow
And whole mountainsides because we are so many
And we want to live right where black oaks lived,
Once very quietly and still
Because we forget not only what we are doing in the kitchen
And have to go back to the room we were in before,
Remember why it was we left
But also forget entire lexicons of joy
And how we lost ourselves for hours
Yet all that time were clearly found and held
And also forget the hungry not at our table
Because we weep not only at jade plants caught in freeze
And precious papers left in rain
But also at legs that no longer walk
Or never did, although from the outside they look like most others
And also weep at words said once as though
They might be rearranged but which
Once loose, refuse to return and we are helpless
Because we are imperfect and love so
Deeply we will never have enough days,
We need the gift of starting over, beginning
Again: just this constant good, this
-- Nancy Shaffer
(Instructions in Joy)
Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Have You Ever Tried to Enter the Long Black Branches?
Have you ever tried to enter the long black branches
of other lives --
tried to imagine what the crisp fringes, full of honey,
from the branches of the young locust trees, in early morning,
Do you think this world was only an entertainment for you?
Never to enter the sea and notice how the water divides
with perfect courtesy, to let you in!
Never to lie down on the grass, as though you were the grass!
Never to leap to the air as you open your wings over
the dark acorn of your heart!
No wonder we hear, in your mournful voice, the complaint
that something is missing from your life!
Who can open the door who does not reach for the latch?
Who can travel the miles who does not put one foot
in front of the other, all attentive to what presents itself
Who will behold the inner chamber who has not observed
with admiration, even with rapture, the outer stone?
Well, there is time left --
fields everywhere invite you into them.
And who will care, who will chide you if you wander away
from wherever you are, to look for your soul?
Quickly, then, get up, put on your coat, leave your desk!
To put one's foot into the door of the grass, which is
the mystery, which is death as well as life, and
not be afraid!
To set one's foot in the door of death, and be overcome
To sit down in front of the weeds, and imagine
god the ten-fingered, sailing out of his house of straw,
nodding this way and that way, to the flowers of the
to the song falling out of the mockingbird's pink mouth,
to the tippets of the honeysuckle, that have opened
in the night
To sit down, like a weed among weeds, and rustle in the wind!
Listen, are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?
While the soul, after all, is only a window,
and the opening of the window no more difficult
than the wakening from a little sleep.
Only last week I went out among the thorns and said
to the wild roses:
deny me not,
but suffer my devotion.
Then, all afternoon, I sat among them. Maybe
I even heard a curl or tow of music, damp and rouge red,
hurrying from their stubby buds, from their delicate watery bodies.
For how long will you continue to listen to those dark shouters,
caution and prudence?
Fall in! Fall in!
A woman standing in the weeds.
A small boat flounders in the deep waves, and what's coming next
is coming with its own heave and grace.
Meanwhile, once in a while, I have chanced, among the quick things,
upon the immutable.
What more could one ask?
And I would touch the faces of the daises,
and I would bow down
to think about it.
That was then, which hasn't ended yet.
Now the sun begins to swing down. Under the peach-light,
I cross the fields and the dunes, I follow the ocean's edge.
I climb, I backtrack.
I ramble my way home.
-- Mary Oliver
Do yourself a favor and go to this link to read and listen:
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