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Positive News    H2'ed 7/14/21

The Rose Garden

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A rose garden
A rose garden
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Foreword

If we have learned any timely, valuable, costly or painful lessons from the ongoing global pandemic, they should be overlaid with the irrefutable reality that we are inextricably interconnected. Humanity and lesser creatures will sink or swim together.

Blair Gelbond and I have once again teamed up to produce an article which underscores that artificial constructs that divide and cause us to conquer/cannibalize our species are nothing more than straw baskets, that hold no water. The link to Blair Gelbond's OEN author page is as follows - .opednews.com/author/author71296.html

The Rose Garden

Awaken to the sweet, heady, erotic scents of colourful rose gardens in full bloom

Damask, nasturtium, orris, violets, apple, clove and lemon

Life's intoxicating pursuits, busyness, gains, pleasures, mimic the seductive aromas

Masking malodourous, bitter, burnt, sacrificial offerings

Of a topsy-turvy world, in the throes of grave, existential threats

Betrayed by faithless, soulless, incendiary global leadership

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Nigerian International lawyer (LL.M Harvard),based in Lagos, Nigeria. My career spans the United Nations Geneva, Switzerland (World Health Organization, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees), Nigerian energy sector(Shell Petroleum, (more...)
 

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The world is definitely in a race to the bottom. I hope it's not too late to reverse course as things don't look too bright.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 14, 2021 at 8:17:24 PM

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Irene,

That is what it looks like on the surface. We may need to expand our perspective, such that suffering evokes Grace... and breakdown leads in time to breakthrough.

Martin Luther King said:

"You have been veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive." ...

King spoke of some of the suffering borne by people of color (and others too) in the long history of racial oppression and during the civil rights struggle itself.

In this case our suffering will have been earned by our lack of discernment and action...and we will all bear the fate of people of color. I believe we will need to greatly deepen our compassion, empathy, and courage in the years and decades ahead.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 14, 2021 at 9:12:45 PM

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Jung wrote:

"The gigantic catastrophes that threaten us today are not elemental happenings of a physical or biological order, but psychic events".

"At any moment several millions of human beings may be smitten with a new madness, and then we shall have another world war or devastating revolution "

"modern man is battered by the elemental forces of his own psyche. This is the World Power that vastly exceeds all other powers on earth."

Submitted on Thursday, Jul 15, 2021 at 11:22:27 AM

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It would appear that humanity has fallen into a state of collective denial and psychosis. As Trappist monk Thomas Merton said: humanity is confronted with, "a crisis of sanity first of all."

It is difficult to contemplate that this could be the truth, and that instead of facing and dealing with it, we are merely "rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic." It is nearly impossible to wrap our rational minds around the irrational insanity which we are playing out.

Given the interlocking institutions that mandate us to live in a distorted, unnatural way, contrary to our creative, life-enhancing instincts, we are a bit like the sorcerer's apprentice who is trapped within his own magic. We seem to have imprisoned ourselves within an abusive and corrupt system of our own making. We are enmeshed in governmental and corporate policies, and collective behaviors which accelerate our movement toward multiple disasters, like lemmings running a race toward the nearest cliff.

As in psychotherapy, there are answers; however, they usually lay in a direction we haven't yet considered.


Submitted on Thursday, Jul 15, 2021 at 12:22:17 PM

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Jung was of the opinion that if we have no imagination for evil, "evil has us in its grip."

Being out of touch with our own potential for evil increases the chance that we will unknowingly act it out. If we don't develop a multi-faceted imagination and awareness for evil, there is no way for us to know what we are up against. Our lack of imagination for evil is the best way of making us an instrument of evil.

Our lack of insight into the evil of which any of us are capable deprives us of the capacity to deal with it. We need to be on intimate terms and know the darkness within ourselves if we want to have any hope of effectively dealing with the darkness in the world at large.

It is crucially important for us to cultivate the the imagination so as to be able to deal with the evil in our world. Evil, Jung said, can no longer be dismissed from the world by avoidance. We need to contemplate how to best handle evil, without becoming evil ourselves. Monstrous evil is here, is not going away, and in the modern world can easily create devastating outcomes.

We are free to deny this, insisting on staying blind - as it were - putting our heads in the sand. However, if we are seeking and deepening our connection to light we are fated to come to terms with the darker side of ourselves and of the universe as a whole.

Especially for those of us consciously on a path of spiritual awareness, darkness will naturally emerge into view due to the proximity and intensity of great light.

Submitted on Thursday, Jul 15, 2021 at 9:34:34 PM

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The "serenity prayer"

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.

In today's world the internet connects us with the world in an interactive manner. We are called on via these connections to contribute our money, voices, time, effort to a multitude of causes. Indeed we are told that we can not only create change; but we need to or there well be dire consequences.

That serenity prayer seems out of date when we are urged to become part of the change that is urgently needed on so many issues. So, how might one live in today's world and maintain a sense of serenity? I suggest that serenity happens when your choices are congruent with your core sense of self. If you feel conflicted with a choice you are making it is a sign that you are not being congruent. It is time to meditate on those choices and the on the conflict one is experiencing; to understand why those choices don't sit well with ones core sense of self. Sometimes you may find that the choice is not OK and other times find that ones sense of self needs to change (for example, my insecurity about money is not really valid and I do want to send money to my local food bank).

While I urge everyone to help save the world, and to realize that we are all in this together, I want you to recognize that your physical, mental, and spiritual health is of utmost importance and that serenity is a primary factor. For a while I was so concerned about global climate change, global hunger, and other social problems I was feeling guilt for not doing enough. It took a toll on my health and I new I needed to deal with my conflicts. It was through meditation that I eventually got to a point where I achieved a state of serenity and happiness. As I look back I think I am doing more but it seems almost effortless. I used to frown a lot to show my concern; but now I smile a lot to show my love.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 16, 2021 at 1:00:34 PM

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Serenity, juxtaposed with the desire and calling to be a change agent. A conundrum and delicate balancing act indeed!

The clarity and profundity of your words and train of thought, are sustenance for the wayfaring soul, seeking meaning and truth in today's arid spiritual landscape.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 16, 2021 at 3:09:44 PM

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While you perceive today is an arid spiritual landscape, and I get that, it is in times of seemingly darkness that one is likely to search for light/meaning within oneself.

I think that the reason I made the comment about finding serenity was that I felt overwhelmed by the crisis that humanity faced from global warming/climate change and frustrated by how the desire of fossil fuel corporate interest was to make as much money as possible for as long as those resources exist and how they used their wealth to get politicians to do their bidding. In short my mind was in a state of utter dispair and I was talking to anybody I knew about it and I saw that look of wanting to change the subject or looking for a polite way to get away. I was asking myself do I really want to try to change the World or to let it go (play a video game or listen to music).

Like I said, I turned to meditation asking what should I do? I realized that I cared so much for humanity and all the creatures that I could not just let it go. That this careing was who I was in my core being. I also realized that everyone had their own personal sense of who they are (including those coal barrons and the politicians who support them). I can't make them change who they are; only they can change themselves. So I continue speaking out but I am no longer overwhelmed or frustrated.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 16, 2021 at 5:54:59 PM

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Funny, that's exactly how I feel - ' no longer overwhelmed or frustrated.' Be well.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 16, 2021 at 6:38:52 PM

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Hi Philip,

Your post reminded me of 2 stories. The first is from Dan Juan Mateus, the Mexican mystic made famous by Carlos Casteneda.

Later in his internship Carlos sees Don Juan in tears and learns that he has lost his son in an accident. Carlos asks: "Don Juan, you said that the reality we see is an illusion. Why are you crying? Don Juan answers: "I did say that"but the death of one's child is one of the greatest illusions."

**

The second quote comes from Baker and Harvey. I'd guess that, especially in the coming years, we will be asked to hold both - serenity and anguish. Or, one might say that we can hold these states of mind at different levels - where anguish floats (without losing its inherent pain) in the empty space of peace.

Baker and Harvey write:

"What evolutionary mystics have discovered is that a transformational birth can take place as the result of a great death.

As we confront the death of ecosystems and species, spiritual seeks must be brutally thonest about their addiction to transcendence, and the way it is used as a drug to prevent them from feeing and responding to our devastating crisis.

Likewise, activists must go beyond the resources with which they are currently undergirding themselves because the death in this birthing is going to be massively shattering, beyond anything the human race has previously experienced, and they must have grounded practices to assist them and turn to a force beyond themselves to inspire, energize, guide and sustain them." (Con't)

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 17, 2021 at 2:08:59 PM

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Reply to Blair Gelbond:   New Content

I kid you not! A short while after I had made my comment I wondered if you had read any of the Carlos Casteneda's books and what you thought about them.

The quote of Don Juan immediately brought to mind the death of my wife. She had been in a hospital for a month, the doctors said that they could possibly operate on her and save her life; but that her heart condition made her likely to not survive the operation and that the recovery would be long and difficult. She said to me "don't make me go thru that" and she chose to not have the operation. She came home and two days later went into a hospice facility. The following day she passed away. The hospice called to give me the word and I said "I am glad for her that her ordeal is over". Those words from me came from my heart. For the next few days I felt sorrow and kind of numb. Then in a dream she came bounding into our living room where I was watching TV, but not actually paying attention, and leaped into the air like a ballerina and said "look, I'm dancing now!" (she had trouble walking or standing and rode an electric scooter to get around for the past 5 years). That experience made me smile and brought me back into life and transcendence.

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 18, 2021 at 8:14:43 AM

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Philip,

I, too, am glad her ordeal is over...and that she appears to have come to visit you from the other side.

I think Don Juan has much to teach anyone who is open to another way of seeing life.

As is shown by your synchronistic experience, there certainly appears to be more going on than meets the eye!

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 18, 2021 at 12:15:54 PM

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(Con't)

""At present our response is drastically, almost comically, inadequate. On the one hand, much of the transpersonal world is largely clueless and narcissistic in relation to the severity of our predicament. Likewise, activists remain aloof from the mystery of the evolutionary birth"and through that, dissociated from the power they are going to need.

"we are challenging the transpersonal world to plunge into the shattering realities of the dark night, and" evaluate all of the different spiritual traditions [with] a willingness to do so. We challenge spiritual practitioners to stop indulging in fake spiritual delusions and begin taking up the challenge of humanity's greatest mystics and prophets to put love into action. Conversely, we say the activist:

"We are with you and have always been with you. We honor the divine passion for justice that burns in your heart, but we are asking you now to understand that all of your tactics and strategies cannot be enough for this crisis, that it is not only a crisis of justice, but an evolutionary crisis. You must be brave enough to expand your vision and align with the mystery - whatever way you can, and by whatever name you call it.

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 17, 2021 at 2:33:59 PM

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(Con't)

"The only strategies that could work in unprecedented chaos will be given to us if and as we align ourselves with sacred reality.

Accordingly, we as elders want to protect you as you advance with your honorable passion for a more compassionate world by pointing out"that the force and passion and stamina and energy that you need to realize your longing for a new world can only revealed in you, to you by simple opening to spiritual possibility.

"We denounce any tendency by the transpersonal milieu to turn away from the severity of the crisis, just as we denounce the cynicism of the activist whose pragmatic perspective prevents him or her from adopting a sufficiently holistic stance in order the fully engage the struggle.

In other words, we believe that only a divinely conscious activism, aligned with the truth of the evolutionary mystics, could ever hope to be able to begin to deal with the crisis."

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 17, 2021 at 2:52:15 PM

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Philip,

I would say that the sentiment you expressed above: "So I continue speaking out but I am no longer overwhelmed or frustrated" is not ideal.

I'm very big on the work of Edgar Morin, who takes to task our unconscious paradigm of "either/or". So, I would say that, as humans we need to be prepared to feel overwhelmed and frustrated, given the massive nature of the dysfunction (the vastness of which almost none of us can fathom).

For spiritual practitioners, spiritual bypassing (see comments in article, "The Farther Reaches of Human Nature" on the OEN page) is a cause for "eternal vigilance."

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 17, 2021 at 3:04:13 PM

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The problem of being overwhelmed is that feeling is debilitating. As I wrote, I was contemplating giving up trying to make a change. I am surprised by your response/comment.

What I hear you/Edgar Morin saying is to ignore those feelings, to just be aware of them, but keep on doing what you do. For some that may work; but for me those feeling were a signal that my inner self/beliefs was not in accordance with my mind/thoughts and for my own mental health I needed to resolve that conflict. Some use counseling. I use meditation.

I do get that the situation is indeed overwhelming and that feeling frustrated and overwhelmed is an appropriate human response. Having just written this I get your perspective - to embrace your human nature; while I seek to embrace my divine nature (bliss). So my issue is with your judgment of what is "ideal" for a human being.

I liked your comment, it made me think deeply about my "humanity".

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 18, 2021 at 9:25:43 AM

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As Ram Dass used to say, "Just give it all space."

I understand the way despair and feeling overwhelmed can easily be debilitating.

I also very much appreciate Baker's and Harvey's comments on "addiction to transcendence."

As Ram Dass also found, we can't afford to lose sight of our humanness. by "rising above" our issues. Somehow, we need to discover a synthesis of the human and Divine within ourselves.

I'm also aware that a number of Vipassana meditation teachers, who had gone far by utilizing meditation, finally entered psychotherapy (including Ram Dass). Meditation, which originated in a monastic setting, and in eastern cultures, was not designed for the psychological level issues of western culture.

Although there are similarities between the two, there are things that can be accomplished in the interpersonal context of therapy, where meditation tends o fall short. Also, the goals of the two modalities are different: meditation eventually leads to an ongoing experience of Absolute Reality, while psychotherapy aims for human wholeness.

Competent "spiritual psychotherapy" aims for both.

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 18, 2021 at 12:45:23 PM

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Joanna Macy has written:

"Just as grief work is a process by which bereaved persons unblock their numbed energies by acknowledging and grieving the loss of a loved one, so do we need to unblock our feelings of despair about our threatened planet and the possible demise of our species. Until we do, our power of creative response will be crippled."

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 11:03:50 AM

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Thank you for your very thoughtful, contemplative comment, Philip.

I find the serenity prayer to be profound indeed. Each sentence holds a gem.

I do think the world presents situations in which either of two choices are not congruent with one's core sense of self, in which case, perhaps, we need to go even deeper within to discover the most dharmic choice (examples: participating in the armed conflict against the Nazis, or even voting for Biden).

I would say that the most viable course is to "die into the dharma," in which case one's actions are aligned as much as possible: 1) with cosmic cycles; 2) with the energy of the positive evolution of consciousness now present on earth and 3) with an ego-free place within. In this way one can become an "instrument" of Grace.

I tend to think of serenity as a byproduct of an orientation of service to others. Yet, as I recall, Ram Dass once said: "If you want to work for a peaceful world, you better damn well be peaceful."

Submitted on Friday, Jul 16, 2021 at 3:47:01 PM

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I would suggest that humanity is beset with a collective psychosis.

The depth of our insanity at this time in history is hard to fathom .

Humanity is now confronting the most important question in our history: whether human and other life can survive on the planet - and if we do, in what form? We remain preoccupied, distracted, focused on relatively petty matters, and engaged in arguments and conflicts that are irrelevant to the big picture.

It is true that intense darkness manifesting in us can precede a breakthrough, leading to the emergence of an awakening into realms of being of which we were previously unaware.

Sometimes we are pushed right to our limits, so that we can approach our growing edge, which will, in time, wake us up and bring out the very best we have to offer.

Yet, it is seldom possible to wake up without first realizing we are sleep. Gurdjieff, who argued that most humans were operating out of a "waking sleep," stated that it is only possible to escape from prison after first realizing that one is, in fact, in prison.

The reality seems to be that, at this time, the majority of us are blind. First, we don't realize we are blind (we are blind to this phenomenon.) Second, we are blind to our shadow (in Jung's terms), and our complicity in the darkness operating in our world; Third, we are blind to the light of Divinity, which exists at our center; Fourth, we are blind to the hidden solutions and possible paradigm shifts that exist in the midst of the building chaos.

We each carry within us tremendous creativity which, if we do not use it for the benefit of all, will boomerang, inviting doom.

In the Gospel of Thomas, Jesus is quoted as saying:

"If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you."

- Gospel of Thomas, verse 70

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 17, 2021 at 3:43:29 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Jung wrote: "We are a blinded and deluded race."

We appear to be immersed in a collective madness that is so ubiquitous and by now so familiar and normalized - that most of us have no idea how to think about it, never mind how to deal with it. Not having any idea what to do, it is not uncommon to inwardly dissociate, which only exacerbates the collective madness.

So, many of us go about our lives in a numbed-out trance, making the best of life we can, yet unconscious of this phenomenon. We become like zombies or sleepers in a dream. Yet the reality appears to remain that human beings have become deranged.

Jung spoke of a "sickness of dissociation," which can be defined as a "separation of normally related mental processes, resulting in one group functioning independently from the rest, leading in extreme cases to disorders such as multiple personality." This is a state of fragmentation, which although originating within, has now spilled outside and is playing out on the world stage.

As if under a hypnotic trance, our species is on a trajectory of mass ritual suicide, rushing as fast as we can toward out own self-destruction. We seem oblivious to the catastrophic endpoint which our collective actions are hurtling us. For those whose eyes are open, we see an interminable and monomaniacal persistence in error and a stubborn inability to learn from our mistakes, as we double-down on the actions that have created our multiple crises in the first place.

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 18, 2021 at 1:50:10 PM

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We are supposedly the most intelligent species on the planet. At the same time we are acting out our destructive impulses seemingly without restraint in every corner of the globe.

We are destroying Biospheric life, our support system - of inestimable value in itself - while attacking the continued viability of human life in so many ways, that it appears we are determined to make this suicide attempt successful. It appears that we are in the early stages of modern industrial and technological society collapsing upon itself.

Our future may hold a species "dark-night-of-the-soul," in which our illusions about ourselves and the world in which we live, will be shattered.

Still, we have the option to regard this process - this collective trauma - as a death/rebirth experience, a shamanic initiatory ordeal in which we are forced to consider the dark side of ourselves, and at the same time can emerge as true self-aware adults. It is said that, "it is always darkest before the dawn."

The universe appears to be asking - or demanding - that we consciously participate in our own evolution. It is also said that. "There are no Atheists in foxholes." The odds are that the human race will be brought to its knees.

We can use all the help we can get.

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 18, 2021 at 2:17:16 PM

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I would suggest that in our magnificence as human beings - including our innate creativity, our capacity for wisdom and compassion, and our access to higher, more encompassing states of consciousness - we are being dreadfully abused by our dysfunctional culture, which is interdependently connected with a wildly dysfunctional world.

In situations where animals are threatened, they have three possible courses of action - fight, flee or freeze. We humans are no different.

Many, if not most of us, are unconscious re- being abuse victims. But in the human behavior we see all around us, we behold all three modes of action. Given the dire planetary predicament in which we find ourselves, these are not behaviors we can afford.

Joanna Macy provides great clarity re- this in her book Active Hope.

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 12:36:34 AM

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As I see it, we are and will be increasingly faced with a planetary rite of passage that will appear like a global "dark night of the soul" - one that is nothing less than an extreme evolutionary crisis. Extinction is a very real possibility; however, the deepest knowledge we've been given reveals that an unprecedented birth of a Divine or enlightened humanity can be the result of successfully passing through this initiation - or "trial by fire."

Right alongside its horror, this global crisis will be a unique opportunity for our species to reevaluate our dominant paradigms at their roots. The paradigm of techno-industrial civilization is profoundly ego-based, ego-driven, and ego-promoting. Our egos needs to be a necessary partner (in planning, etc.), but not our master. As Ram Dass once put it: "The ego is a great servant and a lousy master." This civilization has become intoxicated with itself and out of control. It is the same for an individual as it is with the collective ego of humanity.

This ego-dominated mode has become a profound danger to the Earth community. Yet, there remains the possibility that humanity might move into an intimate relationship with the sacred . Such a relationship has the potential to radically alter human consciousness to the point where a new species is born. In many ways this is up to you and me.

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 11:26:30 AM

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Philip Pease

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I apologize for going off on a tangent (from the points you have made about the crisis society faces and the psychological issues that relate to us dealing with this crisis). This particular comment you made triggered thoughts on the concept of "being in the flow".

I took a yoga course from Amrit Desai where being in the flow by following chi with ones awareness as you move through your asanas was a key point of his teachings. In short, start with following your breath/chi and let it move your body from one pose to another with your awareness just following along with the flow of energy/chi. I have employed this practice in my yoga and I found it greatly facilitated my practice. That is poses I had difficulty doing I just flowed into.

So my experience of not trying but just being aware works well. I'm thinking that by shutting off the thinking mind you are letting go of beliefs like it is hard, I'm not good at this. The power of negative thinking keeps you from achieving great things.

If what I am suggesting regarding thoughts is true, then all the warnings about the dire consequences of climate change and talk about the immensity of the effort needed is producing negative thinking and as a result having the opposite effect on achieving what needs to be done?

Working together cleaning up our environment will make for a much more healthy, happy, and holy life. Lets do it.

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 11:28:05 AM

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Philip,

Again, I'd say it's not 'either/or'; this psycho-linguistic form is so deeply conditioned in us!

From my POV we need both: realism without denial (or "peanut buttering over" the realities) - without becoming obsessed with negativity. Recognizing that a new species may come out of this dark night of the soul - with all the pain and anguish that will accompany this birth.

"all the warnings about the dire consequences of climate change and talk about the immensity of the effort needed is producing negative thinking and as a result having the opposite effect on achieving what needs to be done"

I see what you wrote above as a very common New Age fallacy. The first order of business, as I see it, is to cut through denial and face the music.

Eric Utne wrote an article in the NYT entitled, "Feeling Hopeless? Embrace It - and Take Action."

As you may know Desai had a lot to teach, yet he was thrown out of Kripalu for sexual abuse of disciples and his hypocrisy of having sex with residents while he was preaching celibacy. I appreciate what Baker and Andrew have to say about "addiction to transcendence."

May I suggest two authors?

Duane Elgin, Awakening Earth

and

Edgar Morin, Seven Complex Lessons fir an Education for the Future, and Homeland Earth.

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 12:41:40 PM

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Our probable upcoming "dark night of the soul" can, if we choose to, be seen as a planetary version of a tribal initiation ritual.

These indigenous rituals are often disorienting, even dangerous, even possibly resulting in death. However, the community knew that this risk was necessary because uninitiated youth were hazardous to themselves and the community. They were not yet responsible adults. An African proverb suggests that, if young people are not initiated, they will come back and burn down the village, just to feel the heat.

As Michael Meade states:

"In traditional cultures, young people would be taken aside and introduced to their inner selves. Initiatory rites would serve young folks as occasions for self-revelation as well as opportunities to absorb wisdom from their elders." Often their exchanges included conversations about death. "After all, a kind of death was required in order that young people might end the period of childhood, while the elders were facing a more literal form of death."

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 11:29:52 PM

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Historian Mircea Eliade defined this process as "a transformation in which the initiate is 'reborn' into a new role." It is a change, he wrote, "in one's existential condition."

In one indigenous initiation the young male is left completely alone. Elders remain not far off, but are not available to spare the child from the physical and emotional challenges of the coming ordeal. In one West African tribe, male initiates are buried in the Earth up to their neck for five days. Food and water are provided, yet they remain entombed. In the same tribe, young girls are hung upside down for a specified number of days. Women brought food and water, but the young person tended to experience great disorientation. She was required to struggle with the forces of nature and with a sense of psychological unraveling...with even a feeling of impending death.

Their sense of identity is shaken and often shattered, so that young people are compelled to reach down inside themselves and connect with the inner core in their own depths to discover a new identity beyond the ego identity. Without the initiation ritual their new identity would not be able to be accessed.

With this in mind, how many of us believe that our leaders have been initiated....or are they burning down the world "just to feel the heat?"

Submitted on Monday, Jul 19, 2021 at 11:34:21 PM

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A Planetary Rite of Passage

Stephen Jenkinson has spoken about the etymology of the word catastrophe. In the Greek language the first syllable, cata, implies a descent, a going downward and inward. It is a descent with a purpose. Strophe is a suffix that relates to the early technology of weaving, such as making a rope ladder. So, the fullest meaning of the word, he says, is that catastrophe is a descent with a path that has been woven before you were aware of it and that you didn't seek.

Catastrophe is, therefore, both an opportunity and an obligation to descend beneath what the culture is comfortable with - into the depths of one's own being. We may eel along in this descent, but the fact is that other people before us, in other desperate times, have taken this path.

It is important to remember that initiation is always a brush with death, and there is no guarantee that the initiate will physically survive.

While New Age memes insist that all will be well, we can remember that no enlightenment is possible without the endarkenment that comes with the visceral experience of the shadow and the pummeling ordeals that accompany the death of the ego.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 20, 2021 at 11:13:44 PM

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In her book, Merchants of Light, Professor Betty Kovacs wrote:

"The first darkness we have to face is the story we've been telling ourselves about ourselves. We have become addicted to a story that has the power to negate the world...Since we as a culture have allowed the connection to our deepest selves to decay, it is more often than not a crisis that opens us to [the] living language of the soul."

She is referring to the language of a new story of human life on Earth.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 20, 2021 at 11:16:57 PM

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We can view what is happening now and what will be coming as a "planetary rite of passage" - a global dark night of the soul that is actually an extreme evolutionary crisis. Extinction is possible, and possibly even likely, but the deepest knowledge we've been given by evolutionary mystics reveals that an unprecedented birth of a humanity re-connected with the Divine is also possible.

The image I use for this is a cell in the body - let's say a tiny liver cell. If it somehow were to isolate itself dissociate itself from the rest of the body, it would called cancerous. If, on the other hand it honored itself as unique, but also realized that it was an integral part of a much larger living entity (the body), it would flourish and the body would likely do so as well.

We have dissociated ourselves from, as Gebser calls it "The Ever-Present Origin." The coming crisis may serve to reconnect us.

From Gebser:

All work, the genuine work which we must achieve, is that which is most difficult and painful: the work on ourselves. If we do not freely take upon ourselves this pre-acceptance of the pain and torment, they will be visited upon us in an otherwise necessary individual and universal collapse. Anyone disassociated from his origin and his spiritually sensed task acts against origin. Anyone who acts against it has neither a today nor a tomorrow.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 21, 2021 at 11:55:57 AM

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We've been discussing the realistic possibility of the extinction of the human species and, potentially, much of the Biosphere.

Paradoxically, initiation means beginning, yet the most powerful initiations always involve some sort of death. We can think of a romantic relationship's ending. The pain of the breakup, if used well, can be the pain of a neophyte being initiated into a new level of awareness.

It can be an arduous movement out of a pragmatic, self-reliant attitude, and evoke a spiritual sensibility: an awareness of ultimate dependence on an ultimate source, a sensitivity to the sacred and a new level of responsive, humanly responsible living - beyond egocentricity. This kind of responsibility can acknowledge the mysterious factors that influence and structure life.

In our outer life, such an initiation may look like a defeat; yet at a deeper level such experiences may be the only way to a new and true beginning. An understanding may arise that, while we may feel that an ending is a contradiction - at a deeper level the realization may arise that beginnings and endings enfold into one another in a mysterious way.

Submitted on Thursday, Jul 22, 2021 at 12:47:16 PM

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Philip Pease

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It has been several days since I made my last comment. I have read your comments several times. I felt the need to let your thoughts linger, to intertwine with my own thoughts, to digest what you are saying. Today, after reading your last comment I feel what you said completed the process (of digesting what you have been saying) completely. Your thoughts took me on a trip that helped crystalize my own journey; thank you.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 23, 2021 at 9:43:33 AM

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Philip,

It is an honor and a pleasure to hear that I have, in some way, contributed to your journey. I very much sense that your seeking is authentic and will continue to bear great fruit.

Although despair, anguish and joy appear to be a necessary blend on the spiritual path - and the first two states of mind are no "fun" (I would avoid them if I could!) - intellectually, I appreciate the yin/yang, dark and light interpenetration of the process.

I feel that what summarizes my own path is the Hindi name, Ram Dass: "servant of God."

There is no way to repay my teachers for the gifts they have imparted - other than to become my unique version of what they have taught.

Thanks for writing.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 23, 2021 at 11:23:16 AM

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Human extinction may be on the docket and it may not. One thing seems certain: on this river there are rapids ahead. And, it is likely that many of us - as long as possible - will distract ourselves, or deny or attempt to rationalize this predicament. We may need to be pushed to the very edge before awakening becomes possible.

A painful reality seems to be at the heart of the evolutionary process. We - and other species - often seem to grow through the path of dire circumstances. If this is so, then the immense challenges we are likely to face in the decades ahead will be the path that provides the crises to awaken the capacities we need to ensure our long-term survival as a species.

In any case the human race is facing mortality (and, the decimation of the Biosphere) with all the lessons that death can teach.

Regarding this process, the worldly use of power by entities such as the governments, corporations and the probability of transnational controllers must be taken into account. Those in charge have signaled that they have no intention of returning to a democracy founded on the recognition of inalienable individual rights and freedoms.

As Ruechel writes:

"In this Brave New World, the regime will grant temporary conditional privileges tied to virus seasonality, good behavior, or whatever other conditions they choose to set to achieve the social engineering agenda of the day. Once they opened Pandora's Box to a society based on conditional rights, there is no limit to where their imaginations will take them."

This appears to be a psychological game about power and control.

"How do we stop this neo-feudal re-imagining of society? How do we play chicken with a regime that appears to hold all the cards?

"At this point it is clear that regaining our freedom depends entirely on the government losing the support of the crowd. To use the words of Hans Christian Andersen's timeless folktale of 1837, we need to shake our frightened fellow citizens out of their stupor by getting them to see that "the emperor has no clothes" but, more importantly, we need everyone who sees it to be willing to say it out loud.

"To plant a seed of doubt, to help people take that first step, it is not what you say that matters so much as being seen to say it, out loud, in public, in a way that allows you to be identified and counted, and being willing to face the music when the world can see what you really think. And saying it over and over again, relentlessly, until enough voices join in, until the counter chorus can no longer be dismissed as fringe.

"Doubt is created by breaking the illusion of consensus."

Submitted on Friday, Jul 23, 2021 at 1:50:14 PM

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From biologist Lewis Thomas:

"We may all be going through a kind of childhood in the evolution of our kind of animal. Having just arrived, down from the trees and admiring our thumbs, having only begun to master the one gift that distinguishes us from all other creatures, it should perhaps not be surprising that we fumble so much...

We have not yet begun to grow up. What we call contemporary culture may turn out, years hence, to have been a very primitive thought on the way to human maturity What seems to us to be the accident-proneness of statecraft, the lethal follow of nation-states, and the dismaying emptiness of the time ahead may be merely the equivalent of early juvenile delinquency.

.... If we can stay alive, my guess is that we will someday amaze ourselves by what we can become as a species. Looked at as larvae, even as juveniles, for all our folly, we are a splendid, promising form of life and I am on our side."

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 24, 2021 at 11:24:45 AM

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The Thorns in the Rose Garden

There are elements within each of our psyches that are guaranteed to make our collective initiation more difficult. These can be called aspects of the "personal shadow."

Narcissism

Techno-industrial civilization appears to be inherently narcissistic. Preoccupation with ourselves is epidemic and prevents us from experiencing genuine concern about what is happening outside ourselves. It corrupts our politics, our personal, and our spiritual lives. Without examining its ubiquitous domination of our psyches, we are making our own annihilation all the more likely.

The Terror of Taking a Stand

Those of us who internally and/or publicly acknowledge what we know tend to fear the fact that we are often demonized. Thus, we shrink from speaking the truth we sense or see. If we publicly share what we see, we may be accused of being chronically negative. We also know that, throughout the world, whistleblowers and truth-tellers are often silenced or murdered. Yet, we can realize that remaining silent in the face of a potential apocalypse makes our extinction in the coming years all the more likely.

Our Love of Comfort

In the West we are hopelessly addicted to a lifestyle that we are willing to perpetuate even when it is clear that the world is being destroyed by it. We are unwilling to alter our outrageous living arrangements or even conceive of doing so, in order to rise to the challenge of creating an equitable world. We persist in magical thinking that denies the need to work on solving the planetary crisis and perpetuates the lifestyle that has powerfully contributed to it. This is greed that is prepared to sacrifice the entire planet.

Traumatization

The reality is that many of us are traumatized, both through our upbringing and the devastation unfolding in the world. The key to healing is to make conscious the various layers of our conscious and unconscious layers of woundedness that repeated trauma has wrought. As trauma expert Van der Kolk said some time ago, patients need to "accept that we are dealing with a dual reality: the reality of a relatively secure present that lives side by side with a ruinous, ever-present past."

The predicament is that there is no longer a "relatively secure and predictable present." This means that what is happening in the external world constantly re-traumatizes us, making us less able to respond, other than from the most damaged parts of ourselves.

It is now common to escape into ludicrous denial and magical thinking, regressing to simple fundamentalist answers (including violence) or even using precious time to obsess about the possibility of extinction. (con't)

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 25, 2021 at 1:32:19 PM

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Thorns in the Rose Garden (con't)

"Woundology"

In our narcissistic culture - for some of us who are aware of our woundedness - our self-obsession generates the assumption that we cannot possibly offer actions that positively contribute to the world situation until we have healed all or most of our childhood or present traumas. Our endless dwelling on our own private wounds prevents us from acknowledging the reality that millions (if not billions) of beings in the world are acutely and chronically suffering from maladies - more difficult than we have, or probably ever will.

The Golden Shadow

This involves the obsessive adoration or admiration of "saviors," when the reality is that the qualities that we most admire are crying out to be developed in ourselves. This is a projection into the external world that we need to withdraw, or re-own - taking it back within ourselves.

Submitted on Sunday, Jul 25, 2021 at 1:38:16 PM

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More Thorns in the Rose Garden

Our Collective Shadows:

Our escalating cataclysm is casting a collective shadow that affects every being on Earth. Here are some of its aspects:

Disbelief regarding our global predicament: not being able to accept that something so large as a global crisis could be happening. As a result, skepticism causes us to judge others who speak frankly of the crisis as "extreme" or "fear-mongering" "off their rocker" - paralyzing the collective effort to focus in a concerted way.

Denial of the severity of our predicament, which minimizes or rationalizes or causes us to cherry-pick data that we prefer, ignoring relevant causes and outcomes. This includes the naïve assumptions that the government and media could not be keeping us in the dark regarding what is happening - or minimizing the ways that democracy is being consciously undermined by corporate elites and government through false flag operations (such as 9/11) and the growing epidemic of authoritarianism in our world.

Dread of the consequences of our actions, including the extinction of species, endless war, our tolerance of inequality, and hatred of immigrants. It is natural to dread the blowback that these realities will inevitably create. Consciously or unconsciously, our dread prevents us from seeing things as they are - from looking full-on at the suffering and heartbreak in the world that is already ubiquitous and bound to get worse. Thus, we are prevented from looking full-on at the consequences of what we are doing and then attempting consciously respond. This only increases our dread and deepens our paralysis.

Disillusion and despair regarding human nature itself, and what appears to be its seemingly endless capacity for destruction and self-destruction. On an unconscious level it would be natural to feel profoundly hopeless and disempowered. It is understandable that we can feel depressed, overwhelmed, angry, bitter and passive - and thus victimized by a culture of mass-distraction and secretly fixated on extinction and death.

A death-wish, which is a natural outcome of the previous three shadows. This is a desire not to be alive on the planet at this time. Unconsciously or consciously, we feel this because it pervades the collective consciousness. Perhaps we perversely wish for the world to be destroyed and with it, the crazed, meaningless and agonizing way of life our hubris and nihilism has spawned.

Submitted on Monday, Jul 26, 2021 at 12:33:55 PM

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Philip Pease

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Reply to Blair Gelbond:   New Content

I grew up in a religious family. My mother took me to Sunday school and church. In Sunday school (as a child) I was taught Jesus' love and compassion. In church I was taught Gods' wrath and the threat of eternal horror of hell if I even thought naughty things. Sunday school made me feel happy to be alive while church terrorized me. As I grew older I reasoned that any God that is like that is evil and is not someone I could ever worship. I gave that God my middle finger salute and left the church. It was a scary decision because if that God was real I was I big trouble; but I felt brave in my decision.

I gave my background (above) to clarify my perspective about religious teachings influence on the things mentioned above. Evangelical Christians supported Trump for President. I wondered why they would support someone who is an anti-Christ like person, full of hate, lust for power, full of lies. I suggest they felt Trump would bring about the "end days" that the book of Revelation described. They think he is part of Gods' plan for planet Earth and mankind. They believe they are supporting Gods' plan

I perceive the book of Revelation as a warning of what will happen if mankind does not turn away from greed and selfishness and turn toward love and compassion. We can choose to live in harmony with love and compassion and take care of our environment and each other. It is not Gods' will or plan; but it is our choices that bring about either heaven or hell both individually and collectively.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 10:51:06 AM

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Blair Gelbond

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Philip,

As usual, thank you for your input.

I very much agree with much of what you wrote and have a few additions.

I believe that the majority of Evangelicals and many Christians who voted for Trump are wedded to authoritarianism, with as you say, its hatred, lies and lust for power. This is all a very worldly "power-over" paradigm. Bizarre that such a pure original teaching can be turned upside-down and inside-out to this degree. Adorno and Altemyer have written in detail about this phenomenon.

I also sit with a seeming paradox: that God (or as Gebser describes this, "The Ever-Present Origin") is simultaneously All-Good - and because the infinite includes all that is - "All Evil."

Olaf Stapledon has authored a book, titled Starmaker, that is described as the best science fiction novel ever written, which features a meeting with the infinite, I would say is worth the price of the book.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 12:56:12 PM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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So you believe there is no truth whats so ever in the Bible that could apply to helping things are right now? This 10 minute video of Rock Sound Clips will walk you through things kept secret in Daniel 8, 12 and Revelation 10, revealed to me before knowing, or giving a damn about anything kept secret.

First take, 2011 on Marie's channel, who gave me a reason to bother to tell the truth to the blinded as you. (Have read enough of you to say that.you a Shrink Frued who believed every lie in a police report. Won't need lawyer for Govt will settle out of court if they any brains left... The Cops in town know girl lied!!! As do many cops on road driven from Abbey Road Condo in Lemon-Minisinster MA) She will always be Number 9's Yoko. From 2011 before flying to Antwerpen to drink her into the ground, on account of sack cloth and ashes times due to blindness of the world forgettne the Hippy Yippie Sixties.

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Will you respond to comment or spurt Shrink Frued BS?

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 10:36:55 PM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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Gave the born a gain stuff a shot 78-80 on farm in Petaluma CA that an older brother left MA looking for truth and helped found "The Church of The Open Door" who in 1980s the hippies it got off the streets and married with kids sold farm bought for them and bought a down town white church. It didn't work for me though there were lots of sincere people searching in it. I could not answer my question of how a loving god could send one to hell who never asked to be here?

Have found a whole lot of truth in the Peace-Freedom Spiritual Rock & Roll of the sixties to 70s. A whole lot of alcohol that Leonard Cohen sings of in Democracy is coming song somehow kept me in the right bars blasting the juke box on way to hell. Now am not one bit worried about watching Revelation 12-13 church and state beasts on TV. My joke of calling "the established church" one of the 7 last plagues could very well end up true. Purging and refining for Rocks brotherhood of mankind sharing the world stuff. That bad moon John Fogerty saw doesn't have much of a chance with the world MAXED out!

Everything an everyone is connected. World needs no GOD to destroy what 100 pound nukes of hale could.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 12:59:36 PM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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Whoops, this was meant to respond to Blair, who has shown me not one bit of respect or actaully reply to stuff that went way over his head in comments on here OEN.

I'd call for 4 way video with him Rob Kall and Arlo Guthrie when the $hit does hit the fan.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 10:41:49 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Michael.

You wrote:

So you believe there is no truth whats so ever in the Bible that could apply to helping things are right now?

Actually, I did not say or imply that.

I believe that, like this statement, you at times make unfounded assumptions.

I'm sorry that you have felt disrespected. That was not my intention. But did you notice that some of the comments you made above are themselves disrespectful?

I respect your right to have the views and perspectives you do.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 28, 2021 at 10:56:29 AM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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I meant them that way for a Trump supporter ticked me off at the bat over a song I played that cut into his soul. I meant and tried hard to cut into your soul. Whether you like it or not, or believe it or not we have been watching Revelation 12-13 on TV for 70+ years since the Nukes on Japan threw war in heaven down here to earth. Even Lucifer accusing all before the throne was right that they were wrong. Welcome to earth 3rd Rock from the Sun. And I have had enough. Either this country starts acting like a country trusting in some moral god or it is doomed! Have seen the 2 church-state beasts for decades. Start of Corona it came clear of why war was thrown down here, and that JFK was the fatal wound which the Beatles Rock and Roll healed the beast of. Rock and Roll are the Pearls of Thunder kept sealed up in Revelation 10 and are them 144,000 sealed on heads who sing new song in Revelation 14 that can cure even Trump people. If it looked like things were going to work out without this truth known around around the country for some time, I would not be telling you this. This year 2021 of the 21st century are the 21 days one was left with the Prince of Persia in Daniel 10. The Prince of Greece soon to come is the Democracies of the West. And Daniel 11:45 appointed time happened on 1-6-21 with Babble-on thrown down with violence in one hour. This truth can free this land. You probably are on the right side of this Sara Lee Guthrie cover of 1930s Union's wife cry of which side? She was in full war paint a couple days before Corona Wrecked Bar Life In this City just getting to know me back from Belgium since December 2017.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 28, 2021 at 12:09:39 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Reply to Michael Dewey:   New Content

Michael,

I could tell by your words that you were angry about something. What good does it do to "cut into someone's soul, if you are not coming from compassion, and they haven't given you license to do so? Needless to say, you did not succeed in your "cutting venture."

You wrote:

"Either this country starts acting like a country trusting in some moral god or it is doomed!"

My sense is that, not only the country, but the world at large, is in for an experience of "being doomed." My guess is that we will only learn the lessons that Jesus taught by being brought to our knees (which is the perfect place to pray).

We will either disintegrate into conflicting factions - each of which believes it has a corner on the truth (and perhaps we will become another one of the failed species in the universe) - or we will pull together in wisdom and compassion to create an integrated world. Only time will tell.

First we will need to see through the agenda of hegemony, dominance and "power over."

It is said that the majority of evil in the world is committed by who are certain they are "right." Better, in my opinion, to follow the guidance of the Zen master, who exhorted us to: "Keep that 'don't know mind!'" Thus to be open to learning from life.

To be clear, I believe the Bible contains profound truths, and so do the Taoist, Buddhist, Hindu scriptures, as well as esoteric Judaism, and the Sufis. These are like faces of a multi-faceted jewel.

We all have delusions, as this is the human condition. We are fortunate to have persons who have seen through some of our delusions and can point the way back to reality.

"The emergence and blossoming of understanding, love, and intelligence has nothing to do with any tradition, no matter how ancient or impressive-it has nothing to do with time. It happens on its own when a human being questions, wonders, inquires, listens, and looks without getting stuck in fear, pleasure, and pain. When self-concern is quiet, in abeyance, heaven and earth are open."

Toni Packer

I appreciate your sincerity and the goodness in your heart.

.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 28, 2021 at 1:21:05 PM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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Reply to Blair Gelbond:   New Content

Two songs can sum up where country needs to head. Steve Miller's we got to get down to a swing-town mind our own business way of life, with Alan Jackson's that would be alright with a bigger piece of the pie and lighter load for all to bare. Of course heading towards green tech direction with jobs modeled after the $20 Billion a year worker owned Mondragon Cooperative of the Basque in Spain, which owns its own bank which reinvest in itself and a college that trains its rank and file who each have a vote in how the company is run. Also see Public City and State Banks coming with lots of Public Utility like City-Cable Utility.

Of course it hinges on turning the empire around. It basically is the age old battle from empire as 200 and 2000 years ago. Neither me nor Arlo are delusional. Its a cold hard truth as is also these times were cut short by John Lennon's death in the Big Apple, or no one would survive. You could call the Leominster Police and I'd bet ya they believe me now, not as 20 years ago when a lie in a police report slandered me with family. I may just take some advice and sue.

Let me tell you of a sailor Harry Bridges was his name, them same bosses who tried to frame him for 10 year+ years in court are still in charge today. A country united on peaceful solutions can get what ever it wants.

Feel as tired of all the talk of love as Steve Miller of in Space Cowboy and found that same new way with out being conscious of the words in the song.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 28, 2021 at 2:44:17 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Yet More Thorns in the Beautiful Garden We Can Have

The shadow - the psychological areas we tend to hide from ourselves and others - presents a major obstacle to the work we need to do to prevent the demise of our own species and the Biosphere.

An additional shadow aspect (which is both personal and collective) is entitlement. It is virtually impossible to live in an affluent culture of narcissism and hyper-individualism without being seduced into a sense of entitlement and exceptionalism. The notion (whether conscious or not) is that, as residents of the First World, we are special and should not have to endure the hardships and deprivations of the developing countries, particularly if we are not a person of color. Americans have been indoctrinated with this notion since birth.

While many Americans, and particularly American politicians. are eager to champion America as exceptional, few are willing to acknowledge the ways in which we are obscenely exceptional. We have the most people incarcerated in the world .(As of June 2020, the United States had the highest number of incarcerated individuals worldwide). We are diseased with a racial divide that spans some four centuries; we are the nucleus of the world's military-industrial complex; and we are the only nation that ever attacked a civilian population with nuclear weapons.

Other lethal shadows woven into our culture include the unceasing - even crazy - busy-ness, which, if not countered, effectively removes our capacity to be present with other beings and ourselves. Lack of the capacity to appreciate the present moment eviscerates our capacity for deep contemplation and concentration.

In unprecedented numbers we succumb to an addiction of momentary pleasure and escape, but ignore the abyss of emotional, spiritual, and even physical death into which we are walking.

Beyond this, Americans live in a culture that calls for institutionalized cheerfulness and an obsessive pursuit of happiness - a preoccupation that effectively cordons off our consciousness from the contemplation of suffering and the tragic elements of life. Grief phobia and grief illiteracy pervade our daily life, creating a "flatland" in which we are unwittingly forbidden to feel fear, sorrow, despair and often even exuberant joy.

We have entered an apocalyptic situation of a he world is burning - which we are forbidden to deeply feel, engendering a kind of sterile madness and numbness which perpetuates the very forces destroying the world.

Techno-industrial civilization is a product of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. We have developed a form of "scientific fundamentalism" which denies all mystery and can be as toxic as the religious fundamentalism it adamantly rejects. This can be seen in the ever-present fantasy that technology will save us. (Con't)

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 11:47:26 AM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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I can't help but think, as a sixties to 70s peace-freedom spiritual Rock and Roller (Of Neil Young's keep on rocken in the free world 80s stuff-of machine gun justice.) you are what Space Cowboy Steve Miller sang against in most Anti-Establishment Song Ever Sung, with the "New Way" he sang about in this 2012 video.

When you find out where that "new way he found is at" let me know. Cause you have no clue of the times we are at: like 200 and 2000 years ago.

Nothing but Flowerful beautiful words, with no point of action RIGHT NOW! The words of love the Space Cowboy was sick to death of in 1970 when wrote this Space Cowboy Song.

But you will evade any element of thought to these latter times we are in right now written of in Daniel and Revelation. Latter or later than ever before.

"The 2rd coming of the Red Man is closer than it has ever been."--Marty Stuart sings of in his Badland's Album from around 2007

We are the 7th Generation Crazy Horse knew would come to be a blessing to even the lunatics in charge of this sick world. At the 8th Fire of the other Native quote.


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We are at that 8th fire right now, 7th generation to be a blessing to this sick world also.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 10:00:49 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Yet More Thorns in the Beautiful Garden of Roses We Can Have

These frames also ignore the two realities: 1) that an inner transformation of consciousness is needed; and 2) first-order change will not save us.

"First-order change" refers to change within a given system. Here, the system itself remains unchanged, while its elements or parts undergo some kind of change.

The one way out of a dream, obviously, involves waking up - a change from dreaming to a completely different state. In this case (as in many others) first-order change is incapable of effecting the desired change, because here, the system's structure itself must undergo change, a change that can only be affected from the second-order change level.

We have all, at moments, had the experience of being caught in comparable binds or "boxes;" From "inside the box," a solution arising from a first-order perspective appears impossible; however, a solution arising from a second-order level will appear as an astonishing flash. But from a vantage-point "outside the box," it is simply a matter of shifting from one set of presuppositions or assumptions to another.

Submitted on Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 12:14:04 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Another possible obstacle to our achievement of Earth as a beautiful garden.

We could "go crazy" - experiencing such divergent views, voices, and paradigms of perception that we are unable to come together in meaningful dialogue and agree on the nature of a sustainable future.

Instead of converging around a common agenda, the world could drift into ever more confusing and chaotic rhetoric and conflicting ideologies.

Unable to discover a shared consensus beneath the discord and pandemonium, the conversation of the planet could collapse into the lowest common denominator of security and survival, and "right vs. wrong."

In the face of monumental stress, the collective human psyche could fragment and disintegrate within an overall context of denial and a belief that things will somehow return to "normal."

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 28, 2021 at 11:25:49 AM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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I'll keep firing a few more shots of liberty with thanks and giving out of MA. Thanksgiving for being passed over 70 years of undeclared US War Crimes of Biblical Proportions. Calling for all States calling for Article V Convention, registering everyone over 18 to elect delegates to a Continental Congress Pow Wow with the 17 remaining Lakota Sioux holding out for US to come to our senses at Pine Ridge South Dakota. Blog is a work in progress. Was gut feeling when Rocking Down angels woke me up to a truth kept secret in Daniel 8, 12 and Revelation 10 Always though America looked like a Turkey. It was the 90s when saw MA as a cartoon musket. The hammer at N.H., Cape Cod the hook to hang it up on, and Providence pulls the trigger on a bring your own god church at end of barrel that cleans out trash before Thanksgiving. What a tradition for strict letter of the law trash. I sure like whoever painted that picture. Doesn't appear as if DC is going to clean house on itself.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jul 28, 2021 at 3:00:34 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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My goal is to write about our planet Earth as a whole, about the human species as a whole, and about the entire Biosphere. It is very easy to become caught up in the multitude of separate melodramas happening, while we lose sight of the whole. And without a clear vision of the whole, we can "miss the forest for the trees."

There are many ways to frame what is occurring and what is likely to occur in the years ahead. What I am suggesting, along with "evolutionary mystics," such as Sri Aurobindo, Pierre de Chardin, and Eugene Gebser is that we have entered a birth process. The intensity of the struggles ahead (the current chaos being only the first phases of labor) may aid us - if we are very fortunate - in giving birth to a new human species.

Our future very much depends on the choices we make - individually and collectively - which is why awakening is so critical. By awakening I am referring to a renewed sense of our connection with an intelligent universe. Sometimes I envision the following:

Picture a tiny liver cell. If it focuses only on itself and says, in essence - "I'm important and anyway, I don't see anything like a body"I'll go my own way" - we call that a cancer cell. On the other hand, if it said, "I'm beautiful and important"and look at the magnificent, harmonized living being of which I am an integral part," - the cell would likely flourish, and the body as well.

This a physical analogy of our spiritual essence. We are free to go it alone; on the other hand, we can realize that we are part of something that is alive and vast beyond measure.

From this perspective humans will be being forced out of one era and into another. If, enough of us remain after the cataclysms of the first half of this century, we may give birth to a "divinized human." (con't)

Submitted on Thursday, Jul 29, 2021 at 2:29:56 PM

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Michael Dewey

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"When shall it be said in any country of the world, my poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive...when these things can be said, then may that country boast of its constitution and government."~ Thomas Paine"
       -- Tom Paine

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From what I can add up from looking back at last 70 years, unless we start to live as brothers and sisters there ain't much reason to bother saving the Mother Earth. And I'm a big fan of the Native wisdom of living one with Mother Earth our only home. Best can add up treating each other as Christ is best we can do. Oh, I seriously joke of telling "god" about these teeth he made a mistake on. I joke of putting my fist through "his teeth." As for as divine goes there are 2 dead girls carrying me home and hope I make them laugh once in a while. There are also plenty of others who have died to keep us all going. They like to see us having a good time. That's all I could teach our children as old guitar picker introduces this "Teach Your Children Well" song that only recently took on a bigger meaning too me. But that one they picked applies to this whole generation about $crewed to the max, is how these times add up to me.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 30, 2021 at 3:49:16 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Carolyn Baker and Andrew Harvey write:

"Nearly-insane anxiety can detonate our false and dangerous addictions and expose our blinding attachments in such a way that we are forced to realize their destructiveness and have to go on a humbling and bewildering, but transformative journey in order to transcend them.

"Annihilation of all proposed solutions can make us, if we are humble enough and discover the wonders of 'unknowing knowing,' receptive to healing solutions from the Divine Field.

"The revelation of the horrible depth of our own shadow and the shadow in the systems of power and control it colludes with and keeps enabling in their rotten brutality, can galvanize a revolution of Sacred Activism that empowers and inspires us to build together systems that honor the Divine laws of interconnection, universal compassion, and justice.

"As Bede Griffiths said to Andrew in a private conversation, 'The Divine works through paradoxes that human reason cannot grasp, but illumined knowledge can.'

"Out of our deepest agony can be born our most comprehensive healing; out of the terrifying ending of one whole way of being and doing, a new humanity can be born, chastened by horror and tragedy, but open at last to previously unimaginable, new possibilities.

"What this 'dance of opposites' within the ongoing ruthless devastation of the dark night makes clear to those who embrace the map we have offered, is that while there is no way out of our evolutionary dark night, there is a potential way through that could, if we [have] the courage, stamina, faith, and radical surrender to pursue it, lead to the most astounding possibility of allthe rising of the golden phoenix of a divinized humanity from the smoldering ashes of its old identity."

Submitted on Thursday, Jul 29, 2021 at 2:31:41 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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And from Edgar Morin, who gives voice to the questions and objections any thoughtful person must raise:

"Will the struggle for the survival of humankind be transformed into the struggle for the birth of humanity?

"Always and everywhere, domination and exploitation have prevailed over mutual assistance and fellowship. Until now, religions of love and ideologies of brotherhood have brought more hatred and disagreement than love and fellowship. Throughout history, madness and unconsciousness have more often than not swept away reason and consciousness. Why should folly and unconsciousness, one more time, not settle our destiny?"

Then Morin offers this invitation: "Admit that the situation is logically hopeless," he suggests - for,

""if the situation is logically hopeless, this indicates that we have arrived at a logical threshold at which the need for change and the thrust toward complexification can allow for the transformations that could bring metasystems into being. It is when a situation is logically impossible that novelty and creativity, which always transcend logic, can arise.

"Thus, it is when the chemical organization of groups of millions of molecules became impossible that a living auto-eco-organization first appeared."...

"The conscious pursuit of hominization would bring about a new birth of humanity, which although possible, but not yet probable, would bring an end to the 'prehistory of the human spirit.' This process, by definition, involves a renunciation of 'infinite expectations [such as] the conquest of nature without limit.'

Submitted on Thursday, Jul 29, 2021 at 2:44:31 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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Michael,

I very much appreciate your thoughts.

A few of mine:

1) Best not to be too human-centric: the animals and plants are also our brothers and sisters. If humans go extinct (which is a distinct possibility) some of our non-human brethren may stay alive. And who knows, in time the next "human species" may emerge down the road from our animal family. So, I very much feel it is worth doing what we can for the Biosphere.

2) Re- Christ, my thought is that is a mistake to merely "worship" Christ. We instead can focus on becoming "Christ-like."

Submitted on Friday, Jul 30, 2021 at 5:37:45 PM

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Michael,

I also understand being angry at "God." I can't think of a more human emotion, given the travails of our lives.

The following is the best I can do re- this:

The Creative Force is freedom and oneness itself, and the apparent "parts" - people, things and events in our universe - being made of "God-stuff," are also imbued with free-will. This means that, from a Universal point of view, there is room for whole planets to be destroyed if their inhabitants do not tend their planets well.

Beyond this - after many decades of studying the law of karma - my conclusion is that Creation set this law in motion, and this means that, over time, "Nobody gets away with anything." In other words, what we live is all "cause and effect," "cause and effect."

Once we really grok this, we can still have our human reaction of blaming "God," while at the same time realizing that we have been the creators of the destinies we live.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 30, 2021 at 5:53:02 PM

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Nietzsche - no doubt a prophetic genius, and later in his life, a madman - used the phrase "God is dead" to sum up the effect and consequence that the Age of Enlightenment had had on the centrality of the concept of God within Western European civilization, The Enlightenment had brought about the triumph of scientific rationality over sacred revelation; and the rise of philosophical materialism to all intents and purposes had dispensed with the belief in or role of God in human affairs and the destiny of the world.

Thus, today, despite the continuing outward pieties of ostensibly religious people, there is a way that we in the west have subconsciously jettisoned God as a living reality. We have become conditioned into a secular, de-sacralized view of life.

However, today an increasing number of us are having undeniable experiences of a transcendent reality, which some of us call "God." What we intuit is that there is a powerful force, apparently originating outside of human consciousness, which is nurturing the spiritual growth of human beings.

To really contemplate this reality brings us to a single (sometimes) terrifying idea: that God (or, as Gebser calls it, "The Ever-Present Origin") seeks to have us merge into the experience of Godhood or the One. The idea here is that God is the goal of evolution, and that this power/intelligence/love is the source of the evolutionary force, as well as its destination: simultaneously the Alpha and the Omega.

Submitted on Friday, Jul 30, 2021 at 10:13:18 PM

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'God is dead': What Nietzsche really meant

The death of God didn't strike Nietzsche as an entirely good thing. Without a God, the basic belief system of Western Europe was in jeopardy.

by

SCOTTY HENDRICKS

It's been 134 years since Friedrich Nietzsche declared: "God is Dead" (or Gott ist tot, in German), giving philosophy students a collective headache that's lasted from the 19th century until today. It is, perhaps, one of the best known statements in all of philosophy, well known even to those who have never picked up a copy of The Gay Science, the book from which it originates. But do we know exactly what he meant? Or perhaps more importantly, what it means for us?

Nietzsche was an atheist for his adult life and didn't mean that there was a God who had actually died, rather that our idea of one had.

After the Enlightenment, the idea of a universe that was governed by physical laws and not by divine providence was now reality. Philosophy had shown that governments no longer needed to be organized around the idea of divine right to be legitimate, but rather by the consent or rationality of the governed that large and consistent moral theories could exist without reference to God.

This was a tremendous event. Europe no longer needed God as the source for all morality, value, or order in the universe; philosophy and science were capable of doing that for us. This increasing secularization of thought in the West led the philosopher to realize that not only was God dead but that human beings had killed him with their scientific revolution, their desire to better understand the world.

The death of God didn't strike Nietzsche as an entirely good thing. Without a God, the basic belief system of Western Europe was in jeopardy, as he put it in Twilight of the Idols:

"When one gives up the Christian faith, one pulls the right to Christian morality out from under one's feet. This morality is by no means self-evident" Christianity is a system, a whole view of things thought out together. By breaking one main concept out of it, the faith in God, one breaks the whole."

Submitted on Friday, Jul 30, 2021 at 10:21:19 PM

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Given his profusion of insights, Netzsche may have glimpsed the following. But if he did, I doubt he had any way to interpret these levels of awareness.

From Amazon.com:

The noosphere, identified in the early twentieth century as intrinsic to the next stage of human and terrestrial evolution, is defined as the Earth's 'mental sphere' or stratum of human thought.

Manifesto for the Noosphere, the final work by renowned author Jose' Arguelles, predicts that the noosphere will be fully accessed on December 21, 2012but warns that we will only successfully make this evolutionary jump through an act of collective consciousness among humans on Earth. The ascension to the noosphere or Supermind (using the terminology of Sri Aurobindo), Arguelles says, will be an unprecedented "mindshift" that mirrors the emergence of life itself on the planet.

Manifesto for the Noosphere is intended to inform and prepare humanity for the nature and magnitude of this shift. Arguelles brings in the Mayan long-count calendar, radical theories on the nature of time, advanced states of consciousness, and the possible intervention of galactic intelligence. He carefully details the role of the noosphere in relation to other planetary strata (hydrosphere, biosphere, atmosphere) as well as the history and nature of the biosphere-noosphere transition and the intermediary phases of the technosphere and cybersphere.

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 31, 2021 at 1:53:02 PM

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Reviews:

"Jose' Arguelles's last book is appropriately called a manifesto. I hope that it is in fact a premonitory description and that his vision of connection and oneness will come to passotherwise, our future looks dark indeed. Arguelles clearly believes we will make the transition to full humanity, fulfilling our promise and evolutionary destiny. His huge confidence and deep wisdom combine to make a remarkable vision seem not only attractive but attainable. Read this. It will help forge your linkage into a critical mass of truly human beings."


Dr. Roger D. Nelson, director of the Global Consciousness Project

"Jose' Arguelles's contribution to our critical time is truly unique. He combines deep spiritual insight with a sense for the reality and urgency of acting on that insight. His "manifesto" is a veritable bible of the deep dimension of the worldshift in which we now find ourselves. It should be read by all awakened humans, and all who wish to wake up and participate in the greatest attempt ever to consciously steer the evolution of our not only biological and social but also spiritual species."


Ervin La'szló, author of WorldShift 2012

"Manifesto for the Noosphere is not only a work of genius but a vital guide to making the shift from the biosphere to the noosphere, the next stage in the evolution of Earth consciousness. He integrates the work of Teilhard de Chardin, Sri Aurobindo, and the Mayans with Russia scientists' "cosmism," looking at issues of planetary and universal evolution as a function of the emergence of "living intellectual matter," synchronized by cosmic mind. This is a work of immense importance and encouragement for us all."


Barbara Marx Hubbard, Foundation for Conscious Evolution

"I would like to think of this book as the will of my old dear friend, the late Dr. Jose' Arguelles. He is the person who taught me what the nature of time and the calendar really mean. I am certain that we can learn how human beings can live with nature in the noosphere. I strongly recommend this wonderful work."


Dr. Masaru Emoto, author of Messages from Water


"Manifesto for the Noosphere is a masterful synthesis of noospheric thought. Arguelles tackles difficult themes with a characteristic clarity and accuracy; this book resets our thinking and offers practical solutions of how to expand mundane consciousness to cosmic consciousness."


Liubov Gordina, President of the Noosphere Spiritually-Ecological World Assembly; author of the Noo-Constitution

"[A] must read capstone work."


Robert David Steele Vivas, author of Manifesto for Truth: Expanding the Open Source Revolution

"Timely last words, and meditation schedules, from a key cosmic thinker of our times."

"Jose Arguelles was indeed a visionary, and his ideas offer us a way out of the malaise of the post-industrial era. It is clear he saw and felt this shift and described it through the culture and vision that resonated with him."

New Dawn

"Manifesto for the Noosphere is not only a work of genius, but a vital guide to making the shift from the biosphere to the noosphere, the next stage in the evolution of Earth consciousness."


Gaia Media

"You know a book is good when the author's introduction pulls on your heart strings right away... Arguelles maintains that the Earth is more than a bunch of land masses, bodies of water, flora and fauna... Somewhere between the lines of the Aboriginal "Dreamtime" and the Jungian Collective Unconscious lies the concept of the Noosphere."
Dreamspeaker

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 31, 2021 at 1:59:22 PM

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Blair Gelbond

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A boy came one time and asked, "Maharajji (Neem Karoli Baba), did Jesus really get angry?"

As soon as Maharajji heard the word "Jesus," tears came to his eyes. He was sitting up when the question was asked, and he leaned over on his elbow and tapped his heart three times with tears coming down from his eyes.

There was total silence for a moment.

Maharajji had brought the reality of Christ into everyone's consciousness, and he said, "Christ never got angry. When he was crucified he felt only love. Christ was never attached to anything; he even gave away his own body."

Submitted on Saturday, Jul 31, 2021 at 3:49:35 PM

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