Life, Liberty & the Pursuit of Happiness ~ Power & Powerlessness

Dedicated to Marshall Slade Agresto Smith, who killed himself the day after his 22nd birthday. His family includes French, Spanish, Native American and Lebanese blood. The blood of his life is on all of our hands.

suicide, cultural ills, guns, Marshall Smith

Marshall Slade Agresto Smith candlelight vigil dedicated to his life, which he ended with suicide with his own gun.

He was an acquaintance whom i met at the bar where I asked to dj and incorporate my own music with the set. He hung out there from time to time, when he wasn’t working as a chef. Cooking was his passion.

Mashall Slade Agresto Smith

Mashall Slade Agresto Smith

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I spoke to him, commenting that the way he dressed, he looked like the carpenter apprentices in Germany who wear a particular uniform and only walk between their apprenticeships, Zimmerman. I couldn’t remember the name, and intended to tell Marshall the next time i saw him.

Zimmerman is a tradition that is hundreds of years old, still practiced in Germany and parts of France.

Zimmerman is a tradition that is hundreds of years old, still practiced in Germany and parts of France.

A Zimmerman is basically a journeyman.

I noticed the last time I saw him to my astonishment that he had a real gun in a holster carried on his belt, hanging at his stomach. He said “yeah, it’s legal here in New Mexico”. Bout a week later, i was swinging by the plaza of Santa Fe coming into town at dusk and saw all these people standing holding candles and ‘CANDELARIOS’ lined up around the center.

Candlelight vigil for Marshall Smith

Candlelight vigil for Marshall Smith

I thought to myself, which tragedy happened now around the world, a new bombing or flight disaster? I approached and tried to see in the darkness the picture setting there. I soon learned that it was a vigil for Marshall, who killed himself several days earlier. The day after his 22nd birthday he shot himself with his won gun. His family stated in the announcement of his obituary, to not let people who drink be near guns, and not let people with guns near alcohol.

I came across this article a few days ago and sensed it that it’s appropriate to the current zeitgeist.

Broken Open, Heidi Barr, grief

Broken Open Heidi Barr on grief

“Politics.  Human decency.  Disrespect for women.  Self hatred.  Governmental control.  Fear. Complacency.  Planetary destruction.  Stealing.   Dishonoring sacred sites.  Destroying nations.  The despair of the poor.   The despair of the rich.  Outrage.  Ignorance.  Brushing it under the rug.  Dishonesty.  Hope.  Hopelessness. Wondering.  Paying the bills.  Running away.  Feeling stuck.

So I don’t think we need more guilt, or rage, or powerlessness.  We surely don’t need more entitlement, self hatred, or shame.   But we do need to grieve that which has been lost, that which has died, that which we or our children will never have, and that which is at this very moment fading away.  Stephen Jenkins says, “Grief requires us to know the time we are in.  We don’t require hope to proceed.  We require grief to proceed.”

Marshall’s one grandfather had been president of a local college, St. Johns. The other, a Native American who’s a fantastic chef, bringing the family together through this ritual and art, which his grandson Marshall adopted with a passion.

I feel that this is representative of a sickness of our culture.

We’re all ‘expected’ – by whom – cultural norms and habitual responses – to conform; i.e. in our economic incentives, the way we dress, the appendages and material possessions we obtain, through the work we do, the way we express ourselves and how we view and even interpret reality. It’s a structural conformity, that filters down to our routines and habits, the ‘weekend’ celebration, the time allotted from our economic machine to gather… otherwise – put your head down and don’t question. French, Ukrainians…question. Americans are severely brainwashed. Noam Chomsky communicated how the media contribute to this structural conformity in Manufacturing Consent. “proposing that the mass communication media of the U.S. are effective and powerful ideological institutions that carry out a system-supportive propaganda function, by reliance on market forces, internalized assumptions, and self-censorship, and without overt coercion, by means of the propaganda model of communication.”

Suicides, drug addiction are all representative of cultural ills. War is a condoned, anticipated and enculturated norm which is uncanny. War and artillery, weapons and the military industrial complex are viewed through the cloak of nationalism. It is your duty, and is equated with loyalty and honor to your country. I become so disgusted with this that I often feel just disappointment with my fellow man, and have more affection, adoration & praise for other animal & life forms, including plants.

This young man was not a conformist by any means>>>>and our culture screams for conformity. Consumerism overpowers the urge for genuine communication and cooperation. We all quickly assess and judge by clothes. How do you dress? What kind of automobile do you drive? What are these things broadcasting about you? What is your job or profession? How do you make your way in the world to pay for your housing and clothes…so that you have a place to sleep when your weekend respite arrives to spend some time at home enjoying these? We drive by one another insulated in our automobiles or interact while attending an entertainment event which we usually need to pay for. The entertainment standard is something we passively ‘watch’, rather than interactively participate in. I have been viscerally thinking about this and wrote while waiting to attend the ‘visitation’…that I’m disgusted with Marshall’s suicide, feel it is representative of cultural ills – not merely family.

fiery orange sunset

fiery orange sunset

The same day that I walked out of the visitation for Marshal and caught a glimpse of this fiery orange sunset which lingered pink on the horizon as I rode away, I later communicated the circumstances to a friend living in New Mexico who also saw this sunset. She said that just that day she had been reading about the Bridgend suicides, which were this sudden increase in suicides among mostly teenagers and young adults in the last few years in Wales. I found this article about it. The Mystery Suicides of Bridgend county

“The author talks to “cluster suicide” experts…Outbreaks like this are rare but not new…They have happened in Germany, Australia, Japan, the U.S., Canada, and Micronesia…Psychologists familiar with the phenomenon are saying that what’s going on in Wales is a classic case of the Werther effect, named for Goethe’s novel The Sorrows of Young Werther, about a young man who puts a gun to his head to end the agony of unrequited love and because he can’t find his place in the provincial bourgeois society of the day. The novel’s publication, in 1774, prompted young men all over Europe to dress like Werther and take their lives. It’s also called the contagion effect and copycat suicide: one person does it, and that lowers the threshold, making it easier and more permissible for the next…”

“These suicides are a symptom of a deeper societal malaise.”

This was just one individual, yet it prompted me to wonder how common suicides have been in history. It’s something I’ve never really wondered aboutinternational suicide rates. It appeared from my search that this has been on the rise in a number of different countries. I can’t imagine that this was common hundreds of years ago somehow.

International suicide statistics

International suicide statistics

About the same time that this occurred, George Monbiot – an environmental, social, economic and political writer – wrote this blog. “There Is Such a Thing As Society

Why should plagues of mental illness surprise us, in a world being ripped apart?

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 12th October 2016

“What greater indictment of a system could there be than an epidemic of mental illness? Yet plagues of anxiety, stress, depression, social phobia, eating disorders, self-harm and loneliness now strike people down all over the world. The latest, catastrophic figures for children’s mental health in England reflect a global crisis…There are plenty of secondary reasons for this distress, but it seems to me that the underlying cause is everywhere the same. Human beings, the ultrasocial mammals, whose brains are wired to respond to other people, are being peeled apart. Economic and technological change play a major role, but so does ideology.”

“Though our well-being is inextricably linked to the lives of others, everywhere we are told that we will prosper through competitive self-interest and extreme individualism.”

Another article and preview of the film which it refers to also presented itself during these same last few days.
From Brexit to Donald Trump: welcome to the age of hypernormalisation in London

“No one talks about power these days. We are encouraged to see ourselves as free, independent individuals not controlled by anybody, and we despise politicians as corrupt and empty of all ideas…But power is all around us. It’s just that it has shifted and mutated into a massive system of management and control, whose tentacles reach into all parts of our lives. But we can’t see it because we still think of power in the old terms—of politicians telling us what to do.”

Hyper normalization Living in an Unreal World

Hyper normalization Living in an Unreal World

Hyper normalization, film, Adam Curtis

Still from trailer of Hypernormalization film by Adam Curtis

“The aim of the film I have made — HyperNormalisation — is to bring that new power into focus, and show its true dimensions. It ranges from a giant computer high up in the mountains of northeast America that manages and controls over 7 percent of the worlds total wealth, to the complex algorithms that constantly monitor every move and choice you make online- giant computer constantly compares events happening around the world to events in the past. If it sees a dangerous pattern, it immediately adjusts its trillions of dollars to keep things stable. That is real power. The algorithms on social media constantly look at the patterns of what you like and then feed you more of that—so you enter into an echo chamber that constantly feeds you back to you. So again nothing changes—and you learn nothing new that would contradict how you feel. That too is real power.”

In the meantime, Native Americans and a handful of white people are in North Dakota trying to defend their land.

In North Dakota, Dakota Pipeline, protestors, Water Protectors

In North Dakota, the Dakota Pipeline protestors are actually Water Protectors

By the way, I learned the other day from a man I met who had been adopted by a Native American family who is a Native American Literature professor, that in contributing to the writing of the United States Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson was inspired by the Iroquois. The Six Nations: the Oldest Living Participatory Democracy on Earth

“The people of the Six Nations, also known by the French term, Iroquois Confederacy, call themselves the Hau de no sau nee (ho dee noe sho nee) meaning People Building a Long House… The original United States representative democracy, fashioned by such central authors as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, drew much inspiration from this confederacy of nations. Together these peoples comprise the oldest living participatory democracy on earth. Their story, and governance truly based on the consent of the governed, contains a great deal of life-promoting intelligence for those of us not familiar with this area of American history.”

Iroquois, 6-nations, Participatory Democracy

Iroquois 6-nations Oldest Living Participatory-Democracy on Earth

Karl Marx was also influenced by the Iroquois in his political philosophy.

In fact, every kid in school is indoctrinated into this with the daily pledge of allegiance.

United States Declaration of Independence

Second paragraph of the United States Declaration of Independence

And yet, I don’t particularly feel that we are all created equal, especially when those who inspired the declaration are the very people who live in sacrifice zones – A sacrifice zone is a geographic area that has been permanently impaired by environmental damage or economic disinvestment. These zones are most commonly found in low-income and minority communities.

Speaking of Democracy, wikileaks now reveals that it is not ‘we the people’ in a Democracy who vote for our representatives, but in fact just before the last election it was Citibank who were already planning even before Obama was elected, who were going to be taking the top posts in the Federal government. This New Republic describes The Most Important WikiLeaks Revelation Isn’t About Hillary Clinton

What John Podesta’s emails from 2008 reveal about the way power works in the Democratic Party.
BY DAVID DAYEN October 14, 201

“Michael Froman, who is now U.S. trade representative but at the time was an executive at Citigroup, wrote an email to Podesta on October 6, 2008, with the subject “Lists.”

This was October 6. The election was November 4. And yet Froman, an executive at Citigroup, which would ultimately become the recipient of the largest bailout from the federal government during the financial crisis, had mapped out virtually the entire Obama cabinet, a month before votes were counted. And according to the Froman/Podesta emails, lists were floating around even before that.”

 Is Compassion the Antidote to Neoliberalism

Is Compassion the Antidote to Neoliberalism

Meanwhile in his article addressing climate change and the disasters and devastation of the petroleum industries’, Monbiot writes in his blog “What Lies Beneath” – a nice play on words – is as biting and bold as his honest assessments always are.

“All this nonsense is a substitute for a simple proposition: stop digging. There is only one form of carbon capture and storage that is scientifically proven and can be deployed immediately: leaving fossil fuels in the ground.

“Their (governments in the pocket of the oil industry) choices are as follows. 1. a gradual, managed decline of existing production and its replacement with renewable energy and low-carbon infrastructure, which offer great potential for employment. 2. allowing fossil fuel production to continue at current rates for a while longer, followed by a sudden and severe termination of the sector, with dire consequences for both jobs and economies. 3. continuing to produce fossil fuels as we do today, followed by climate breakdown. Why is this a hard choice to make?”

In the meantime,

Great Barrier Reef officially declared Dead after 25 million years

Great Barrier Reef officially declared Dead after 25 million years

The Great Barrier Reef is officially dead: http://www.theearthchild.co.za/great-barrier-reef-officially-declared-dead-25-million-years/

I am in the library with my laptop, the only place to come to, not having residual cash to pay at a cafe to sit and linger in communication with the rest of the world. I’m here among library patrons along with a regular homeless population, of which, I guess i’m sort of one. In Tucson, at the grandiose university student library, there were a lot of homeless people too. There are no places to congregate really, unless you have money to spend. I wish to continue writing blogs and doing the research to complete my book, wish to continue playing bass guitar and piano and composing music with computer programs. I am lost as to how to find an artist residency.

… I entertain myself through learning and reading and doing various creative projects, which except for the tools – is free – all the time and effort put in to it have returns in the delivery of delight and joy gained through doing something. It is empowerment through action, not through consumption.

I have been kicked out of numerous places over the last year; parent’s home in PA, the workaway on a ferry in Brooklyn, my friend’s house in PA, the WWOOF i had arranged in the middle of nowhere in Arizona, and then voluntarily from the place i could no longer afford by paying rent with my credit card…and a few other places among familiar people, because people need their space. In fact there are a lot of quite large homes here in Santa Fe and people with homes left vacant while they live in their other homes….and I now have even more stuff that I’ve aggregated to my side; a suitcase of clothes, my laptop, bass guitar, favorite piano book, camera, now a few more frisbees since I’ve joined in on local ultimate frisbee pickup games in each towns I’ve lived in…and yet am almost homeless again, as I’m living so far up into the hills – literally encroaching on the animal habitats of the animals that have no more space for their own territory to live and survive – that my back is started to feel the weight of carrying everything with me down the hill and then trekking back.

I’m going to attend the debates tonight again in a public forum, just to exchange with people around me in their loathing. I had found a place and exchanged a friendly conversation for almost two hours with the woman with whom i thought we had a lot in common, and she said she had to sleep on it, and then never bothered to call me to say she didn’t want me as a housemate. then i moved to this mountain home guest of a man living alone there whose dog I walk, and the other woman who i was going to move in with and had to wait 2 weeks + to move in, called it off at the last moment, after i’d taken down all my signs, stopped looking for housing. a day before move-in i received an email in blue ink, very comforting looking, saying that she wasn’t moving in. then i had my first day at a job substitute teaching and instead of the principal telling me that it wasn’t going to work while I talked to her about potentially exchanging positions with the music teacher substitute who didn’t know how to read music…didn’t bother to tell me to my face that the job was off, but i found a ‘system response’ later that night. Had i not seen it, i would have gotten up again at 5:30 am to get there. then last night, i went to practice bass with a band, and neither of the guys bothered to phone to tell me that this was off, in fact they were playing earlier together with another guy on bass, when the day before i was trying to arrange an alternative night to accommodate the one guys’ new job.

It appears to me that gay men control the fashion and the art industry and then a small percentage of people control everything else. I’ve put out housing ads, and there have been a few people who randomly contact me with obscure cryptic texts, and then there have been a few men who send me pics, practically sexting, to their abs in pictures.

In the meantime, An eye-opening flight over California’s dying forests
By Kurtis Alexander Updated: August 6, 2016 8:00pm

Dead trees sweeping across the Sierras, California's dying forests

Dead trees sweeping across the Sierras – California’s dying forests

The four crew members were halfway through two weeks of flights over landscapes shifting ominously from green to brown, and already they’d begun to draw their conclusion: The mind-boggling number of trees that have died in California due to drought — an estimated 66 million over five years — is only the beginning.

It’s creeping farther north, and to higher elevations, not only providing tinder for wildfires, but also obstructing the forests’ fundamental ability to provide clean water and absorb carbon dioxide.

All i want is an artist residency where I can physically contribute to learning about and maintaining sustainable living, while also helping to ensure animal habitat conservation. My dream; a community of people contributing this, who are also committed to completing new works on an ongoing basis, the work which blends into education and awareness of the fragile planet and interrelationships that need to be sustained. DOES ANYONE KNOW WHRE THESE EXIST? WITHOUT A WAITING LIST?

guess i'm going to have to adjust the sails

guess i’m going to have to adjust the sails

Le plus dur n’est pas de rêver, mais de ce réveiller

….the most difficult is not to dream, but to wake up…..

Carol Keiter, blogger

Carol Keiter the blogger

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Carol Keiter aka nomadbeatz welcomes donations for her writing, photography, illustrations, eBook & music performance and composition

Letter to my Sister Joan | “I’M IN” British Referendum to Join EU | Trump: Fascism arrives in Amerika | Prince Ea Future Generations Sorry | ww right wing political responses prey on fear and xenophobia…forgetting history of colonialism and capitalistic expansion

I just had a FaceTime conversation yesterday with my sister (8 hours ahead in time) in England. Because of my sister Joan’s intelligence and sensitivity, we always have had interesting conversations about an extensive number of topics through the years. In this conversation, many different subjects came up. She and her husband live in York, England, ‘whitey white’ as she calls it. Living in England the past 5+ years – not in London where the metropolitan nature tends to be more tolerant and progressive – but in smaller towns mostly in Yorkshire, she’s seen the inbred, territorial bigotry of Englanders’. Where not only does the intolerance speak out against rivaling neighboring townships, but also occasional negative remarks regarding ‘Yanks’ = MerKons (that’s my condescending label for Americans who display similar racism), and ‘Paki’s’ = Pakistani people whose labor keeps Great Britain running, just as Mexicans are omnipresent within the United States labor force; in kitchens and various other under-payed positions. They do the jobs Americans don’t want to do.

I'M IN button, Great Britain, referendum, European Union

I’M IN button in Great Britain regarding the referendum to join the European Union


Our conversation started as she held up a button to my view, which she had had pinned on her shirt, which because of its political and specifically economic implications, those in her group were vehemently opposed to. She mentioned that the number of Polish immigrants in England is one of the contentious issues. For those against Great Britain joining the EU, their reasoning is that immigrants will take their jobs. It’s however mostly an excuse, masking their bigoted and xenophobic response; besides taking our jobs, refugees may taint our race (uh, destroy the purity of whiteness). Sound familiar? I’m not alluding to the Holocaust, but of the frightening prospect of the right wing parties popping up all over the West. We’ll get to that in a minute.

My sister was ‘not allowed’ to join the group which she’s been attending, because of her refusal to withdraw her show of support for the Great Britain referendum to join the European Union, by taking off the ‘I’M IN‘ button pinned on her blouse. It’s sort of a holistic therapy group; all about using tools such as meditation and the arts and therapy to develop one’s awareness and healing. It was ironically this group who cast her out, because of their intolerance and fear.

Here’s some info about the referendum and the split it’s gouging among English citizens, which is informative for those of us not directly involved in their politics.
The UK’s EU referendum: All you need to know. Among the information in there was this, started in Belgium:

What does Brexit mean?
It is a word that has become used as a shorthand way of saying the UK leaving the EU – merging the words Britain and exit to get Brexit, in a same way as a Greek exit from the EU was dubbed Grexit in the past.

I found this article written in the Guardian by Oliver Imhof, “Why I’ll leave the UK if Britain votes no to Europe”. “As a German living in London, I love the flexibility of life here, if not the food. But I won’t live in a country that turns its back on the postwar consensus of solidarity and human rights.”

Joan points out that for the most part people don’t want more Polish immigrants to take their jobs. She has a local story about Polish workers kicked off of their jobs in the fields, which then the British ultimately didn’t want to do themselves. Her point stating that the Brits, rather than isolating themselves, should be more transparent and resilient, open-minded & open-armed to the current worldwide refugee crisis. As one of the Western powers who, uh hum, propagated the policy of bringing immigrant workers into their country in the first place, to do the low-paying, shitty jobs – through slavery and brining in workers from the countries they subjugated. Currently this subject has struck a nerve, all over the Western world as revealed in their politics. Yet the country forgets its own history, of colonial expansion as a super power at that time, for their own economic gain. Same as the trend of American and other multi-national corporations to downsize and outsource their jobs; setting up shop in remote parts of the world to obtain labor at slave wages and pollute those areas that are out of one’s own back yard.

In the meantime, I came up with this Guardian article,
Polish migrants to strike and give blood to demonstrate importance to UK

My sister mentioned that locally someone wanted to – and succeeded – in kicking some Polish people out of their jobs in local farms…and then no Brits wanted to do the work. Point is, if in this case the British people don’t want the Polish, Pakistani, Indian immigrants or Syrian refugees….they wouldn’t have much of a rich and diverse culture now would they?

She asked me, “Do you know how many Polish people are in Britain?” dunno, well, – now wait a minute – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poles_in_the_United_Kingdom ‘bout a million.

Because my sister and her British husband go regularly to France, the topic of the violence among football hooligans in Marseille came up. Deaths occurred there at a soccer match between the French and the Brits. While talking, I googled and sure enough, found these headlines: http://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/euro-2016-violence-running-battles-as-violence-breaks-out-in-marseille-while-england-fans-chant-isis-a3268166.html
“Euro 2016: Violence breaks out in Marseille as England fans chant ‘Isis, where are you?”

Fans, Clash, Marseille, Brit, Football, hooligans, racism, France

Fans Clash in Marseille – Brit Football Hooligans shouting racist remarks in France

We talked about this with distaste, then she mentioned that that same day, she had been accused of being a Yank in a pub, and harassed for it. The lofty talk of Britain not wanting more Polish people to come into their country, or any other immigrants or refugees for that matter, lead her to mention this, sort of regurgitating what reasons lie behind these voices that are opposed to this, which demonstrate their violence and racism.

She then asked me pointedly, “How many refugees do you think there are in the world today?” to which

I answered, uh, 8 million? “No”, she answered, “60 Million S I X T Y M I L L I O N.”

I offered the information that many of the refugees are fleeing their countries because of either ecological / climate issues or economic ones, or war… all direct and indirect repercussions of the business and commerce activities of the Western world; i.e. EXON Mobile, Shell Oil….I immediately googled that one while we conversed, and there it was on the Atlantic (formerly Atlantic Monthly), “Violence Has Forced 60 Million People From Their Homes

Joan mentioned that if each town would take in say 500 or 5,000 people -respective to their population – the worldwide problem could be mitigated and assuaged. I added that if the EU and UN would work together to investigate communities and their geographical conditions, to find locations to set up research and development for appropriate renewable technologies, and then assign and relocate people into communities. Rather than all of the deaths, these people who are fleeing problems that are impacted by the West, and relocated in a civilized manner.

The western world could facilitate helping refugees to integrate into jobs serving all of mankind; healthier environment, healthier relationship with all life, healthier relationship with one’s own immediate community. And all of the deaths that we hear about and then look away from, due to the black market of refugee trafficking, would end.

Basically, if it was you’re dad, brother, mother, child, uncle that was trying to flee, you would want this operation to be legal and facilitated with regulations and hospitable treatment.

It’s a world crisis that is a direct result of activities of the ‘Global North’; the northern hemisphere of superpowers that perpetuate activities that consistently harm the environment, think about only short-term gain instead of long-term consequences and continue to drive a wedge of ‘economic rifts’ by keeping things in the status quo; profit driven by greed.

This will change, it already has been.

Because of his eloquence and all-encompassing message, I need to place this here> Prince Ea’s music video rap which poignantly says it like it is.”
Prince Ea speaks to Future Generations: Sorry“, describing what a future generation may come across, when the Amazon Rain Forest becomes the Amazon desert…or when a tree is a thing of the past. He then stops himself mid beats to beckon the audience that it is not too late, if we all resolve to do something.

Prince Ea, Music Video, Dear Future Generations Sorry

Prince Ea Music Video Dear Future Generations Sorry

Naturally, our conversation lead to discussing the present political scenario. “Do you know that Trump could become President?” she said, accusatorially. We talked about the frightening thought of a bigot and zealot entering the White House after the graceful and articulate Barack Obama is ushered out. I mentioned the fact that there’s been a wave of right-wing parties propagating in Europe; bringing up the example of how the Netherlands which formally had been heralded for their open-minded nature – a country who historically have had open arms to immigrants and a very accepting and tolerant nature, have now rebounded towards closing their doors. In 2004, the Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh (a distant relative of Vincent Van Gogh) was killed by a Muslim extremist. Shot dead – his freedom of speech and art the reason for exterminating his life, because the shooter had interpreted van Gogh actions as an insult to his religion. Dutch citizens have since collapsed their openness and are up there among the most fearful in Europe with their anti-refugee stance. Joan brought up Marie Le Pen in France. I had recently heard that Austria just had a quasi facist right-wing political party enter the scene (which either threatened to, or have come into power). Sorry, no time presently to look up all the sordid details of the various different European government political systems. Just that it’s a fact that there’s been a sweep of right wing zealots all over Europe, capitalizing (pun intended) on the public’s fear of economic instability and xenophobia. I went to the news source in English for Le Monde Diplomatique, Mondediplio, and there in this issue is an article by one of their regular writer’s “Why the far right is on the rise” by Serge Halimi. His first line of the article answered my mention of the recent Austrian election, “Before long a domino is going to fall: a far-right candidate failed to become president of Austria by just 30,000 votes.”

In the American political race, Trump is a man who is a joke and buffoon to many. Yet, he’s been getting huge amounts of free advertising and air time, because of the fact that he’s so outrageous. In fact, his absurdity and complete lack of morality and diplomacy, is actually serving as his tactic. He reaches his audience through the lowest common denominator; machismo, speaking to peoples anger, and playing upon their fear and insecurity. He’s already been well-versed in illusion in the arena of television, a stage he’s been very familiar with and knows how to play his part well. He can draw audiences and ratings because of how politically incorrect he his, nothing barred, says whatever he feels and the more inane and the more he taunts, the more amusing he is to his audience. Like regalia to adorn his stage, his wife and daughter are eye candy accoutrements to smile and wave. Having hammed up his tv personality, he knows how to rip out ugly statements that are dramatic in their shock appeal.Somehow, Americans are either dumb and dumber or so conned that they don’t see through his lies, or realize that he’s playing a ‘reality tv’ sitcom comedy called “running for president”, without any capability whatsoever of diplomacy, empathy or strength as a leader whose actions could inspire the world. He’s a con artist who dares to say what he thinks – which i guess is the reason that many people praise him for being real. Perhaps this is because many people cower about saying what they truly think, and therefore look up to someone who does because they don’t want to take the risk or are too lazy to bother to look up the facts to see if what he is saying is actually accurate. In fact, much of it is false, and somehow people are getting snowed, blinded by his bravado. This brazen man, by his uncouth statements with hatred and scapegoating etched into his sarcasm, could easily uncoil into the makings of a tyrant; his overblown ego and harsh statements and emotional instability are the makings of another Hitler. I believe that people prefer to believe what they want to hear. So instead of a gracious and educated, genuinely diplomatic and eloquent Barack Obama, here’s this sarcastic prankster who is all smoke and mirrors. I just happened upon this article on a German friend’s Facebook page, who is one of many people who pay attention to what is happening all over the world, as opposed to having their heads buried in the sand…although that may be what he’s doing right now on a vacation with his wife in the white sands of the Maldives. This article in The Washington Post articulates exactly what I was saying. uh hum. This is how fascism comes to America

I mentioned an article I just read about how emotionally unstable and narcissistic Trump is, the current Republican nominee for President in the USA. Yet I also adamantly responded with a no, he will not become president, because of the eloquent words of a consciously aware and articulate woman whose short but intense youtube talk revealed. I’m not typically aligned with the typical psychic, but this woman is simply an articulate and intelligent person speaking the truth. Psychic and Medium Danielle Egnew sayin’ “2016 Psychic Presidential Prediction – You may be shocked!

-.-.-.-.-.-.- Here’s the actual letter I wrote to her following our conversation, with only a wee portion of it censored!

subject: You have special gifts to share with the world – yes, ‘I’M IN’

Hi Joan,

i’m so happy that I looked at the clock and decided to try you on FaceTime. It sounds like you are going through so many different feelings right now between Carole Anne whom you just befriended nearing her death, the incident in the pub, the fact that you couldn’t go on your vacation with Graeme and then not being allowed in – because you stood up for yourself and your right to freedom of speech and choice.

You also have had many fortunate things woven within these stories, but presently the more hurtful ones are screaming out. I’m so happy to talk with you. we have always been communicative through all of the years of growing up and you working at CBS so that we talked so frequently sharing many things. I’m glad to still share this with you and have always learned and expanded my awareness through your insights and intelligent looks at the world.

You can feel like an underdog and feel resentment…I have basic misanthropy because i’m often mostly disgusted with what humans have done to the world…however, WE ARE THE PEOPLE WHO NEED TO MAKE OUR VOICES HEARD.

It is not just for you or my own egos, it is because the world, many many people are either completely unaware, ignorant, stupid or just conned through habit and their lifestyles (kids, economics) to not have or make the time to reflect and contemplate about the actual things happening in the world. therefore we need to speak out.

you have the intellect, insights, wit, sarcasm and you can start writing (4 minutes a day) the notes towards a comedy/satirical podcast about these things, and then edit them and put together a 4 minute/5 minute piece about the hypocracies. you could make it funny as hell. for example, the I’M IN button, and the fact that you were ostracized from a fucking health and well-being therapy group for speaking your mind! that’s a joke as a start!

I love you. I worked on music, then realized, oh shit, this really, is not working, so I started yesterday to bit by bit repair it – creating loops that are 1. the same length, listening carefully to the beats to match them, cutting out stuff that is unnecessary…and sure enough, I’m learning through the process of doing it. Instead of shrinking in embarrassment for what i put out, i’ll fix it and show the tremendous improvement and that process alone makes me proud. I have been way too much of a perfectionist all my life, which stopped me from even beginning often. well, not really, but it’s not going to throttle me any more. I read two weeks ago about a kid here who’s made a big success; 1. his parents taught him to never, ever be afraid of failure, because that is how you learn. 2. his father drilled into him a quote the gist of which is that he who hesitates, could wind up dying before they get their masterpiece out there!!!! don’t hesitate, just dive in.

Well, you’ve always dived into things, you’re not timid about that. I just say to remind you as well as mother, to be thankful and have gratitude for all of the positive things that you can list. There are many. 1. the fact that there in the most potentially miserable 2 weeks of your life in the hospital, there you met Carole Anne, who befriended you, with whom you bantered, and with whom you gained trust, sympathy and a bond, so that she gave you this beautiful ring to always, always have her close to your heart.

Think if you can, about how lucky you are for having the fucking brain, insights and perspective that you have, so that you can laugh at these poor hooligan close-minded Brits and make a joke about how pathetic they are!!! and remember that you were having a pleasant exchange with nice reciprocation with the other people in the bar.

it is very easy to hone into and only exaggerate the negative, like when a person has a wound, it is that which nags and raises itself to one’s consciousness above everything else. But do something with these wounds, with this awareness Joan, to help to heal the world.

Yeah, and it is devastating that Mother couldn’t be in her own home – i even think that when one MUST walk and MUST move around more, they DO. Anyway, I would have had her living with a Guatemalan sister and brother who fled as children refugees into the United States, who are by nature family oriented and loyal. They could get basic healthcare training, and because mother speaks Spanish, she would love the company….but this is no longer the case. We can encourage the new girl to take her out for a walk and to perhaps drive her around to be in the vicinity of trees, woods, to hear birds, see sunlight moving. She will be there for a long block of time, 2x a week, so I’m sure she could have authority and time to do this.

Hang in there and put that energy into bit by bit creating a skit! or new designs! You are very creative and have special gifts to share with the world Joan.

Love,

Carol

Carol Keiter the blogger pensive

Carol Keiter the blogger pensive

Appropriate photo following yet another mass shooting last evening in Orlando, Florida in the United States; slaughtering 50 people because of hatred.

nomadbeatz aka Carol Keiter ~ As an avid blogger who is presently picking up where I left off to complete my eBook and beginning again to compose music, I ask you rather unambiguously and unabashedly to please donate, if you are able. !-))

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Clearly Unclear Place > Trust Mentors’ Inspiring Words

Deepak Chopra

Deepak Chopra I am here to serve, inspire and live my truth.

I have come to a place where I am indeed stuck, hence the title, clearly unclear. I had catapulted myself, with ease actually, out of Pennsylvania, with several hours of creating a profile and investigating a work-exchange site, specifically a WWOOF position. The host needed someone immediately, and then I miraculously found an automobile to transport across the country, that also was so urgent, that the owners tossed in an extra 100 dollars to entice someone to drive it. So I reduced what I’d take with me to two bags and was off. It was with ease that I also found my way back from the west coast destination for the automobile, back to my host in rural Arizona. I would make it work, the idea was to be isolated with electricity and internet access, to complete my eBook and start composing music again, while writing my blogs. It was a choice just beyond homelessness, and closest to an artist residency. And then I learned that I was the only worker there, that unlike other work-exchange operations, that this was not 5 hours a day, 5 days a week, but every day, and pretty soon I discovered that there was way more work to do than could be easily snipped off at a 5 hour point. Then personality differences ensued. After delicately communicating expectations against the reality and letting reproachful comments slide, one morning the tension fractured, and I was asked to leave immediately. I had just enough time to wash the alfalfa hay and dust out of my hair and pack. When I had the audacity to finally make a statement about the current situation and express my own opinion while being driven from the remote farm to the next town, the tires screeched to a halt and I scrambled to make sure that I could get my valuables, now three bags, out of the vehicle before it sped away.

Eckhart Tolle, Life, experience necessary

Eckhart Tolle Life will give you the experience necessary

I felt more of a sense of relief, than panic. I had been maintaining a meditation practice and had scooped out a bit more time through my own demands to at least do a little bit of my own work in between sleeping and working on the ranch. The animals I loved, the people were angry and overworked. I still remained calm as I stood on this dusty road in the middle of nowhere hitchhiking. A woman of the church finally stopped, she brought me to a place where I was able to approach a man sitting with his iPhone and laptop, to ask if it would be possible for me to poach some of his internet waves in order to send a message to my cousin, who I was pretty sure lived in Phoenix.

Charles Eisenstein, Interbeings

Charles Eisenstein We are Interbeings Anything happening in the world happens to us


It turned out that in the very small allotted time that I sat there with WiFi through this guy whom I had some nice conversation with, that my cousin had returned my email with his contact information. I figured I’d start hitching to Phoenix, and discovered that my cousin lives in Tucson, the other direction. I found rides to take me there also effortlessly.
Charles Eisenstein, Trust Intuition, guided by Love

Charles Eisenstein Trust you Intuition be guided by Love


I have been here a little over a week. I have not had a clue of where to go. I have never warmed up to Los Angeles. I like to discover a city through having the option to walk around narrow streets and bicycle. I like to be in a place where I don’t HAVE to have a car, but can easily find the local ultimate frisbee pickup games, tennis courts, having a place to swim nearby is also lovely…and being among people who are artists and musicians with full hearts and open minds.
Wayne Dyer, karma

Wayne Dyer How you react is your karma


Suddenly it occurred to me that Tucson is this progressive place, particularly since it has a university, that is like an oasis in the desert of massive business chain entities that line several of the wide 4 lane highway streets that cut through the city. You know, the massive chains that are everywhere in the United States, as soon as you get out of the ‘old town’ or central quaint neighborhoods, you are confronted with these massive familiar businesses that are like flavors of ice cream, their brand names are so familiar to everyone.
Carlos Castaneda, Perception Changes

Carlos Castaneda Your Perception Changes

So I decided, yes, I’ll look for work here, and housing, and then I had an experience one day that said, no, this is not what I want. And then I had another day that gently encouraged me to go with this new plan – do the duty, pay the price – and then the following day I was again feeling discouragement. As I communicated in a letter yesterday, perhaps I shouldn’t have come across and listened to, most of my adult life, the words and messages of Carl Jung, Carlos Castaneda, Joseph Campbell, Martin Luther King, Mahatma Gandhi, the Dalai Lama, Eckhart Tolle, Deepak Chopra, Charles Eisenstein, Wayne Dyer…

i.e. Tolle “Awakening to your Life’s Purpose”, Campbell “Follow your Bliss”, Jung “synchronicity” “Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”, Chopra ‘I am the creator of my best life”, Castaneda ‘the teachings of the shaman Don Juan”, Charles Eisenstein “We are all here to contribute our gifts toward something greater than ourselves, and will never be content unless we are.”

Carlos Castaneda, path with Heart

Carlos Castaneda Does the path have a Heart

And in my confusion, I’m delighted to have opened up this to read today.

http://charleseisenstein.net/books/the-more-beautiful-world-our-hearts-know-is-possible/nondoing/

“If we are stuck and do not choose to visit the empty place, eventually we will end up there anyway. You may be familiar with this process on a personal level. The old world falls apart, but the new has not emerged. Everything that once seemed permanent and real is revealed as a kind of hallucination. You don’t know what to think, what to do; you don’t know what anything means anymore. The life trajectory you had plotted out seems absurd, and you can’t imagine another one. Everything is uncertain. Your time frame shrinks from years to this month, this week, today, maybe even to the present moment. Without the mirages of order that once seemed to protect you and filter reality, you feel naked and vulnerable, but also a kind of freedom. Possibilities that didn’t even exist in the old story lie before you, even if you have no idea how to get there. The challenge in our culture is to allow yourself to be in that space, to trust that the next story will emerge when the time in between has ended, and that you will recognize it. Our culture wants us to move on, to do. The old story we leave behind, which is usually part of the consensus Story of the People, releases us with great reluctance. So please, if you are in the sacred space between stories, allow yourself to be there. It is frightening to lose the old structures of security, but you will find that even as you might lose things that were unthinkable to lose, you will be okay. There is a kind of grace that protects us in the space between stories. It is not that you won’t lose your marriage, your money, your job, or your health. In fact, it is very likely that you will lose one of these things. It is that you will discover that even having lost that, you are still okay. You will find yourself in closer contact to something much more precious, something that fires cannot burn and thieves cannot steal, something that no one can take and cannot be lost. We might lose sight of it sometimes, but it is always there waiting for us. This is the resting place we return to when the old story falls apart. Clear of its fog, we can now receive a true vision of the next world, the next story, the next phase of life. From the marriage of this vision and this emptiness, a great power is born.”

Alas, as I take in information with my brain and heart, and also stop and allow new messages to come in, I must trust that I’ll find my way.

Charles Eisenstein, organic intelligence, answer will find you.

Charles Eisenstein message to his Self of the Past The organic intelligence will become visible, the answer will find you.

Dalai Lama, War, military establishments greatest source of violence

Dalai Lama War and military establishments the greatest source of violence in the world.

I’m still looking for that artist residency and community….

Carol Keiter, blogger

Carol Keiter the blogger

Unbounded Spirit | Opposite of Addiction is Connection | Johann Hari “Chasing the Scream”

This short video “Drugs Don’t Cause Addiction” is one of the most profoundly accurate looks into our modern societal malaise and misguided notions about what is of value today. As the unbounded spirit acknowledges, “This Brilliant Animated Video Will Change Your View on Drugs Forever”, and I add, and Your View of Our Modern Society.

Addiction

Everything We Think we Know About Addiciton is Wrong

Obviously much thought went into it, as this video project is a collaboration with Johann Hari, the author of the book “Chasing the Scream”. It reveals that pointing the finger of blame to ‘drugs’ or ‘the war on drugs’ is actually completely missing the point.

"Chasing the Scream, Joann Hari

“Chasing the Scream” by Joann Hari – brilliant reviews

As is typical, the fingers are pointing in the opposite direction of the real problem. What we need to realize is that the real blame is our collective societal values of materialism over connection with others. As the western world has become more and more focused on material wealth and financial gain, this has been accompanied with increasing social isolation. The problem is not a drug, nor an individual addiction, but a collective one which has been driven by consumerism.

We need to rebuild our society towards values in which the individual derives happiness through accomplishments from actions in which he or she is engaged in which makes him/her happy and feel joy from emersion in that activity, and in which collectively we are sharing activities and experiencing joy through camaraderie and sympathy; recognizing that we are all living this life together and that only when all beings have peace, comfort and security can we all share in that joy.

Paraphrasing the video…

Addiction is just one symptom of the crisis of disconnection that is happening all around us.

People have an innate need to connect. When we’re happy and healthy we will bond with the people around us. Yet when we’re traumatized, isolated or beaten down by life, we will bond with something that will give us some sense of relief; such as:

Endlessly checking a cell phones

addiction to cell phones

addiction to cell phones

 

addiction to pornography

addiction to pornography

addiction to video games

addiction to video games

 

addiction to gambling

addiction to gambling

 

addiction to cocaine

addiction to cocaine – drugs in general

because…as the video elucidates, we will bond with something, because THIS is our human nature.

 

 

Since the 1950’s the average number of close friends an American has, has been steadily declining, whereas the amount of floorspace in their homes has been increasing. Choosing floorspace over close friends, stuff over connection.

The path out of unhealthy bonds, is to form healthy bonds; to be connected to people you want to be present with.

It’s not the chemicals, it’s your cage.

We need not talk about individual recovery from addiction, but must talk about social recovery.

We need to change the unnatural way that we live.

The opposite of addiction is not sobriety, the opposite of addiction is connection.

I recall a ‘waking dream I had decades ago. It was not while I was sleeping, but during the day. I was witnessing what has since been created, virtual reality, before it existed. In the dream I was climbing a mountain. I could feel the breeze. The ‘camera’ pulled out so that I was then seeing myself from above, then further away looking down at the earth. Then suddenly I was climbing out of a box, an isolation tank, in my living room. I then was disconnecting these wires from my scull. When I awoke from this engaging dream during the day while I was living in Washington D.C., I recall feeling very disturbed emotionally from the thought of having cheated myself by not ‘actually’ having the real experience of traveling to a mountain to summit, but was only alone in a box – the shell of the real experience. A few years later I was startled to watch a movie while I was traveling and visiting Europe called “Strange Dayshttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strange_Days_(film) because it was recapturing the essence of the mechanics of how this ‘virtual reality’ of my vision and virtual experience occurred.

Strange Days

1995 film Strange Days

I have since continued to feel this conviction (even though I’m sitting here ‘working’ and writing, creating and communicating in isolation on my MacBook Pro – and loving and needing this machine – so I think 🙂 That if we don’t maintain a balance, our technologies will continue to isolate us from ourselves and one another. I had hypothesized that primitive people perhaps had not lost our special connection to the cosmos. A friend then pointed out to investigate my theory by looking at the aborigines of Australia. They once consistently demonstrated telepathy and ultra human powers of consciousness. As modern man relies more and more on our gadgets to do things for us, our human powers of mind and heart and connection to one another and the universal intelligence will atrophy. I believe human beings do have capabilities of telepathy and of connection with the divine through allowing ourselves to quite our minds and engage our spirits and heart – our sixth sense or intuition or gut instincts – whatever you want to call it. Yet, if our thoughts are constantly engaged and busy worrying about the past and the future and what we don’t have and judging one another and watching sitcoms and shit, we don’t have the time or space to tap into what is available to us as spiritual beings on the material physical plane. yep, I said it. I always thought it. And I keep finding other human beings who also reiterate and reverberate the same message….

This video was put together with http://www.patreon.com

patreon

patreon dot com description / kurzgesagt

http://addiction.mobydigg.de and the unbounded spirit.

 

 

 

carol keiter, blogger, arizona, wwoof

Carol the blogger in her Moose-themed residence at her first WWOOF experience in Arizona

 

Here’s a pic of me, the blogger in my ‘moose lake lodge’ residence in the Sonoran desert where I’m participating in my first WWOOF experience on the Veteran’s Ranch, a means of avoiding homelessness while at the same time being very interested in learning about farming techniques from the pros – the people who run the farms and ranches – and I absolutely love and adore animals of every type.

 

When I’m not working with the animals or on my own projects, I’m taking pictures of sunsets.

Solitude, Serenity, Sonoran, Sunset, Feb. 20th 2016

Solitude and Serenity Sonoran Sunset Feb. 20th 2016

IMG_0003

And I’ve started to take videos of the animals, with the incentive to capture the sounds, to then weave into some new music (sounds on the ranch 🙂

Carol Keiter aka nomadbeatz ~ As an avid blogger who is presently picking up where I left off with my eBook to complete it and and beginning again to compose music, I ask you rather unambiguously and unabashedly to please donate, if you are able. !-))

PayPal Donate Button

In addition to the fact that donations are always welcome and appreciated, I just discovered to day February 20th, 2016 patreon, which I am very happy to join and am about to create an artist profile. It is a very similar concept to something I conjectured a month or so ago: wishing there was an artist residency somewhere where the artists can collaborate if they choose, yet which is based on earning money for what they create. They are paid, as they commit to producing work. Well, patron is not a residency, yet it does offer capital, and I’m pretty stoked to have discovered it. Certainly it will act as a motivator for all artists, lighting a fire to keep them producing new work!!! I’ll sign on to patreon as a blogger/photographer/illustrator/author creating a profile tomorrow, and will be de light ed to find some patrons encouraging me to keep on producing work!

The Truth ‘Earthlings’ | Love Letter to the Earth by Thich Nhat Hanh | Kumi Naidoo Greenpeace – Saving the Earth from Ourselves | ‘Only After’ Cree Indians

street are by Banksy I Don't Believe in Global Warming

street art by Banksy
I Don’t Believe in Global Warming

My previous blog stated my angry sentiments regarding human greed and how it has affected our earth and all of its creatures. This blog introduces the paradigm shift in consciousness and understanding needed by all of us. Wayne Dyer mentions in his talk, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”. We need to change the way we see and interpret our relationship to the earth, the cosmos and to all humans and inhabitants of this earth.

In this blog, I’m bringing together three mediums that compliment the same subject, our relationship to the earth. A film, a book and an interview, each revealing that we are inextricably linked to not only all humans, but all other species and to the earth itself. Just as all of the cells in our bodies are working together to create the whole, the earth itself is also an organism. The parts can’t be separated from the whole, nor can the whole exist without the parts.

• “The Three Stages of Truth” is a short video excerpted from the earth-shattering 95 minute documentary film “Earthlings”, about the fact that ‘We Share this Earth’ with all other creatures who are also, of this Earth.

The Three Stages of Truth

The Three Stages of Truth

Earthlings  Make the Connection

Earthlings
Make the Connection

It was narrated by Joaquin Phoenix, features music by Moby, was directed by Shaun Monson, and co-produced by Maggie QWe need to change the way we see and interpret our relationship to the earth, the cosmos and to all humans and inhabitants of this earth.

Buddha Nature – Our Relationship to Mother Earth is an article reprinted from the book “Love Letter to the Earth“, written by the Zen Buddhist Monk Thich Nhat Hanh.

Thich Nhat Hanh Zen Buddhist Monk

Thich Nhat Hanh Zen Buddhist Monk

Love Letter to the Earth

Love Letter to the Earth

Saving the Earth from Ourselves, an interview of the Greenpeace International Director Kumi Kaidoo by Bill Moyers  in Moyers & company.

Moyers & company interview September 2013 with Greenpeace International Director Kum Naidoo on Saving the Earth from Ourselves

Moyers & company interview September 2013 with Greenpeace International Director Kum Naidoo on Saving the Earth from Ourselves

Humans, along with every living thing, are inseparable from the earth and the cosmos. From the perspective of both Native American Indians and Buddhists, when we recognize that the Earth is our Mother and the Sun our Father, we see that just as our biological mother and father and ancestors are within us, inside us, so are the earth and the sun. We need not pray to some abstract god or deity, but realize that the gift and miracle of life and all that we require, is available here and now. All living creatures, regardless of gender, race or species, are children of this planet. Each have the right to life, freedom of movement and lack of suffering. We need not merely recognize that our planet is in peril, but realize that we CAN do something about it. It is possible. It is a choice. Yes We Can. We need to reorient how we see ourselves and our relationship to the earth – as if our lives depended on it – because they do. Money is an abstract concept which appears to be scarce, yet it IS available to invest in the renewable energies and technologies that will help to reduce global warming.

Trillions of dollars became available to ‘bail out’ the large bankers who gambled with the investments of millions of people. Money is there to phase out fossil fuel dependence and reinvest in a global economic campaign that would create jobs in renewable energies worldwide. This economic and spiritual revolution CAN happen. As I mentioned in a former blog, https://carolkeiter.wordpress.com/2012/11/15/notch-up-the-governments-role-with-obamaworks-a-version-of-roosevelts-wpa/ just as Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933 orchestrated the “New Deal”, implementing the (WPA) Works Progress Administration in response to the depression following the 1929 stock market crash in the USA, Obama could create an ‘ObamaWorks’ plan. He could join with world leaders to implement a massive global renewable energy investment plan; to introduce jobs utilizing clean, renewable technologies that would grow economies AND ensure a cleaner and sustainable environment. This can be accomplished by making the choice to step outside of the status quo of fossil fuel dependency; which corporate leaders in the industries culpable for environmental destruction, manipulate legislation through their lobbyists to impede. We have this choice. Our lives and those of future generations depend on it.

Each of us are centered in our own worlds, in which we hold certain things and people precious. Sometimes we forget their value, until after an event threatens to take them away; our health, freedom, rights, a child, parent, partner, project, home…When we cultivate mindfulness and recognize the miracle of life, it is clear that we actively create each moment of our lives by how we interpret, think, speak and act. Through gratitude and the recognition of our responsibility, we can harness the power that we have. To do this, it is vital that we are aware. We always have the choice to smile, to accept and to love.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>In the film Earthlings,

Earth from a satellite image

Earth from a satellite image

Spiraling weather system by satellite on Earth

Spiraling weather system on Earth viewed by satellite

The point is that all creatures which inhabit the earth are ‘earthlings’. There’s no sexism, racism or speciesism in the term. Humans share this world with hundreds of millions of creatures. This encompasses each and every one of us; warm-blooded, cold-blooded, vertebrate and invertebrate, bird, reptile, amphibian, fish, mammal and human. Humans share this planet with millions of other creatures, as we all evolve here together.

We all share the desire for food and water, shelter, companionship, freedom of movement and avoidance of pain.

Humans earthlings crowding the street

Humans earthlings crowding the street

fish earthlings crowding their waterway, working in unison

fish earthlings crowding their waterway, working in unison

Chimpanzee caring for child

Chimpanzee caring for child

Cheetah with cub

Cheetah with cub

However, it is the human earthling that tends to dominate the Earth, often times treating other fellow earthlings and living beings as mere objects, which is what is meant by ‘speciesism’. Speciesism, by analogy to sexism and racism

Sexism Suffragettes in Boston, USA in 1920 demanding right as women

Sexism Suffragettes in Boston, USA in 1920 demanding right as women

Sexism

Sexism

Racism Hitler at Rally in Nuremberg, Germany 1929

Racism Hitler at Rally in Nuremberg, Germany 1929

Racism_Ku_Klux_Klan_Georgia_USA_1950

Racism

reveals the domination of one over another who is different, violating the principles of equality and overriding the greater interest of others. In each case the pattern is identical.

Speciesism as demonstrated by the sport of conquest

Speciesism as demonstrated by the sport of conquest

No matter what the nature of the ‘being’, the principle of equality implies that the suffering of one is counted equally with the suffering of any other being. The moral imperative is respect. Humans who have power, tend to exploit those who lack it, including other beings with whom we share this planet.

Like us, animals embody the mystery and wonder of consciousness. Like us, they are not only in the world, they are aware of it. Like us, they are the psychological center of a world which is their own. We have a psychological kinship with them. Nobel prize winner, Isaac Bashevis Singer 1904-1991, expresses this through the character in his novel “Enemies a Love Story”. Herman states “In their behavior towards creatures, all men were Nazi’s. The smugness with which man could do with other species as he pleased exemplify the most extreme racist theories, the principle that might is right.” In comparison to the Holocaust, one group of living beings anguishes beneath the hands of another.

Caged animals in horrific conditions, going to slaughter

Caged animals in horrific conditions, going to slaughter

Baboon within cage

Baboon within cage

In his book “The Outermost HouseHenry Beston writes http://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/308220-the-outermost-house-a-year-of-life-on-the-great-beach-of-cape-cod that  “We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>In “Love Letter to the Earth“, Thich Nhat Hanh has a passionate appeal for ecological mindfulness and the strengthening of our relationship to the Earth. He reveals that it is vital that we recognize and respond to the stress we are putting on the Earth if civilization is to survive. UTNE Reader features a reprint of the message of his book in the article “Buddha Nature and Our Relationship With Mother Earth“. Summarizing his points, Hanh writes “At this very moment, the Earth is above you, below you, all around you, and even inside you. The Earth is everywhere. You may be used to thinking of the Earth as only the ground beneath your feet. But the water, the sea, the sky, and everything … outside us and everything inside us comes from the Earth. We often forget that the planet we are living on has given us all the elements that make up our bodies. The water in our flesh, our bones, and all the microscopic cells inside our bodies all come from the Earth and are part of the Earth. The Earth is not just the environment we live in. We are the Earth and we are always carrying her within us

Realizing this, we can see that the Earth is truly alive. We are a living, breathing manifestation of this beautiful and generous planet. Knowing this, we can begin to transform our relationship to the Earth. That is the relationship each of us must have with the Earth if the Earth is to survive, and if we are to survive as well. In fact, the earth will survive with or without us.

Elephants

Penguins

He identifies one key issue as having the potential to create a tipping point. He believes that we need to move beyond the concept of the “environment,” which leads people to experience themselves and Earth as two separate entities and to see the planet only in terms of what it can do for them. Rejecting the conventional economic approach, Thich Nhat Hanh shows that mindfulness and a spiritual revolution are needed to protect nature and limit climate change.

The Earth Contains the Whole Cosmos

When we look deeply into the Earth, we can see the presence of the whole cosmos. A lot of our fear, hatred, anger, and feelings of separation and alienation come from the idea that we are separate from the planet. We see ourselves as the center of the universe and are concerned primarily with our own personal survival…But we need to do more than use recycled products or donate money to environmental groups. We have to change our whole relationship with the Earth.

When we look deeply at a blade of grass or at a tree, we can see that it’s not mere matter. It has its own kind of intelligence. For example, a seed knows how to grow into a plant with roots, leaves, flowers, and fruit…A dust particle is not just matter; each of its atoms has intelligence and is a living reality.

In the Buddhist tradition, we say there is mind and there are objects of mind, and that they manifest at the same time. We can’t separate them. Objects of mind are created by the mind itself. The way we perceive the world around us depends entirely on our way of looking at it. If we understand the Earth as a living, breathing organism, we can heal ourselves and heal the Earth as well. When our physical body is sick, we need to stop, rest, and pay attention to it. We have to stop our thinking, return to our in-breath and out-breath, and come home to our bodOur mind is the consciousness of the cosmos.

In his book, “The Lives of a Cell”, biologist Lewis Thomas describes our planet as a living organism. His essay focuses on how connected humanity is to nature and how we must make strides to understand our role. He arrives at the insight that the whole planet is like a giant living cell whose parts are all linked in symbiosis. He likens the Earth to an organized, self-contained being, a “live creature, full of information and marvelously skilled in handling the sun.”

We can think of the sun and the earth as our true parents. The Buddha, Mohammed, Jesus Christ and all our wonderful teachers are children of this planet. Just as we carry the DNA of our biological mother and father within us, we carry the sun and the Earth in each of our cells. It’s easy to think that this highly creative force could have a human form. Yet rather than God being an old man with a white beard sitting in the sky, God is not outside of creation. God is inside every living being. What we call “the divine,” is none other than the energy of awakening, of peace, of understanding, and of love, which is to be found not only in every human being, but in every species on Earth.

In Buddhism, we say every sentient being has the ability to be awakened and to understand deeply. We call this Buddha nature. The deer, the dog, the cat, the squirrel, and the bird all have Buddha nature. And what about inanimate species? The Earth herself has Buddha nature, therefore all her children must have Buddha nature, too. Every blade of grass, every tree, every plant, every creature large or small are children of the planet Earth, and therefore have Buddha nature. Everyone has the capacity to live happily and with a sense of responsibility toward our mother, the Earth. Once we have this insight of interbeing, we can have real communication with the Earth. This is the highest possible form of prayer. We don’t need blind faith to see this. We don’t need to address our prayers or express our gratitude to a remote or abstract deity with whom it may be difficult or impossible to be in touch. We can address our prayers and express our gratitude directly to the Earth.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>In Saving the Earth from OurselvesBill Moyers interviews the Kumi Naidoo, the South African human rights activist and International Director of Greenpeace.

Greenpeace International Director Kumi Naidoo

Greenpeace International Director Kumi Naidoo

Greenpeace Kumi Naidoo homepage We Share Our Planet Help us remind those who forget

Greenpeace Kumi Naidoo homepage We Share Our Planet
Help us remind those who forget

They discuss the politics of climate change and the urgency of environmental activism. The recent actions of Greenpeace International environmental activists are mentioned as they attempted to climb an oil platform in the Arctic to protest the drilling for fossil fuels in this fragile ecology. They were confronted by gun carrying soldiers of the Russian Coast guard. The following day, a Russian helicopter landed on the Greenpeace ship ‘the Arctic Sunrise’ and seized it. Some of the Arctic 30 Activists have been released. Greenpeace is posting continual updates on their website. Greenpeace has often confronted governments and corporations head-on with civil disobedience.

In fact, as of December 26, 2013, news headlines claim that 14 of the 30 activists have been given approval to leave Russia.

Born and raised in South Africa, by his teenage years, Kumi Naidoo was such a vocal and prominent opponent of the racist policies in South Africa of apartheid, that he was beaten and jailed many times by the white regime. He finally escaped to Great Britain, where he was awarded a attended a Rhodes Scholarship to attend Oxford. With the end of apartheid,

KumiNaidoo together with Nelson Mandela at the end of Aparthed

KumiNaidoo together with Nelson Mandela at the end of Aparthed

he headed back to South Africa where he became head of Greenpeace International, bringing his negotiation and advocacy skills to lead an organization with 3 million members.

Naidoo mentions that what happens in the arctic affects the globe. Drilling there has not yet started and they are doing everything they can to prevent this. History teaches us, that all of the struggles and injustices, whether slavery, a woman’s right to choose, apartheid move forward, until decent men and women say ‘enough is enough’ and are willing to put their lives on the line. Moyers points out that Greenpeace owes some of its heritage and DNA to the Quakers; a religious society of friends started in 1660. They are witnesses for peace. Quakers share a refusal to participate in war, oppose slavery, encourage prison reform and social justice. Naidoo mentions that the most important thing that we can take from the Quakers is their commitment to peace, justice and a notion their notion called ‘bearing witness’. If there is an injustice in the world, those of us who have the capacity to witness it, document and record it in order to inform the world about it, have the moral responsibility to do so.

There is Incidentally an also a human’s rights watch group called “Witness”, an international nonprofit organization that has been using the power of video and storytelling to open the eyes of the world to human rights violations. They empower people to transform their personal stories of abuse into powerful tools for justice, promoting public engagement and policy change.

Kumi explains that the Arctic serves as the refrigerator and air conditioner of the planet. It helps regulate the temperatures globally by deflecting the harsh rays of the sunlight. Massive melting glaciers cause the sea levels to rise. He mentions that our leaders don’t connect the different issues and challenges that we face, with the reality of what is happening environmentally. The genocide in Darfur, in western Sudan, was reported by the media as an ethnic or quasi religious conflict, when in fact it was the first major resource war brought about by climate impact. Darfur neighbors Lake Chad.

Lake Chad in 1972 within NIger, Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon

Lake Chad in 1972 within NIger, Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon

Lake Chad used to be one of the largest inland seas of the world.

Lake Chad in 2007 shrunk to the size of a pond

Lake Chad in 2007 shrunk to the size of a pond

It has now shrunk to the size of a pond. Therefore, water, land and food scarcity as the result of the absence of this lake, were the toxic mix that caused this war to occur.

Obama’s words and slogans during his first election campaign were, “Yes We Can”, “the Fierce Urgency of Now” and  a “Planet in Peril”. Kumi states that we are playing political and commercial poker with the planet. The planet doesn’t need to be saved, the planet will come back. What is at stake, is humanities ability to live in coexistence with the planet for centuries to come. Any leader has the ethical imperative and responsibility to act in a way that does not imperil your children and grand children’s future.

350.org  demonstrates that we must write off 80% of fossil fuel reserves completely, and reinvest  in renewable energy; wind, solar, wave technology, to allow sustainable life on earth.

Naidoo mentioned the The World Economic Forum, an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world through mobilizing business and political leaders and engaging academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. The World Bank issued a report: Turn Down the Heat

World Bank study Turn Down the Heat Why a 4 degree waker world MUST be avoided

World Bank study Turn Down the Heat Why a 4 degree waker world MUST be avoided

Kumi’s deceased mother imprinted him with some very compelling ideologies. She often mentioned that “It’s much better to try and fail, than to fail to try”.  As well,   that “We have the option to be part of the problem, or part of the solution”. She said to him that “when you see God in the eyes of every human being that you meet, then you will live your life seeing  humanity in everyone”.

I’ve already blogged about the subject of economic might in the midst of environmental plight, it’s an illusion and paradox comparing the two. I mention in this blog the (GDP) the Gross Domestic Problem compared to Bhutan’s (GNH) Gross National Happiness. http://digesthis.wordpress.com/2012/04/12/gross_domestic_problem_-why-measurement-of-wealth-depends-on-a-healthy-environment/

Kumi mentioned in the interview a prophesy, or rather proverb of the Cree Indians, Native Americans living in various parts of North America. Their territory stretches over the geopolitical borders of the United States and Canada. The Cree Indian Prophecy,

When all the trees have been cut down,
when all the animals have been hunted,

Cree Indian Proverb Only After

Cree Indian Proverb Only After

when all the waters are polluted,
when all the air is unsafe to breathe,
only then will you discover you cannot eat money.

― Cree Indian Prophecy,

To sum up the message of all three, I add, that if you see the gift of creation in all of creation, in every person, every creature and in every form of life and inanimate parts of this planet as the gift of creation, and feel gratitude for every breath that you take, you will recognize that God is everywhere, and we have the responsibility to take care of it.

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I write to follow my bliss. Among various spiritual guides, Deepak Chopra has teamed with Opra Winfrey to bring to you the  21 day meditation challenge. Though it is already underway, there is always time to pause and step out of one’s mind and into one’s heart and breath. Their messages are about connecting within yourself to find out who you are, to discover why you are here on this planet in order to discern your own path.  I’m doing my best to follow mine.

Although my entire post is prompted by my abhorrence of materialism and greed, I nevertheless personally need money. In the process of researching and writing my blogs, to complete my first book, to continue to compose music (that will incorporate various animal sounds) to give these creatures a voice,  I need to pay my rent, to have shelter,  electricity, a desk and food. I make no money doing this and have a very small ecological ‘footprint’. I mostly ride bicycle. Because I’m currently not under ANY umbrella, corporate or otherwise, nor have funding or grants, I’m asking that if you read this far, either to make a donation yourself, or ask a friend with more capital (more disposable income) to make one on your behalf! I’ll take .001% of any billionaires that might happen to be reading this. ha ha! So I’m campaigning for myself and asking you to contribute, if you can !-)) This button leads will feed my PayPal. Any credit card or direct deposit transaction will be secure! thanks. Any feedback is always welcome as well. With love!

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Easy Access to Guns | Violence in Video Gaming | Role Playing of a Disfigured Youth |

Bet you any amount of money that the black trench coat sporting, automatic weapon carrying kid that blew away his mother and 20 children and 6 teachers at her school, regularly played video games…that lovely multi billion dollar industry whose number one participants are 17 to 37 year old males worldwide – involving extreme violence and compulsive playing tactics. [I’ve since learned that he lived in a windowless basement, bunker type atmosphere and played World of Warcraft and Call of Duty.]

Promo_for_Video_Game_Call_of_Duty_re_Norway_massacre
The only reason that i know a little bit about video games, is that my German ex boyfriend (who was physically violent towards me a number of times) was an alcoholic in addition to being a compulsive gamer. He’d prefer to stay in his room smoking cigarettes, in need of incessant stimuli (mediocre to lowbrow TV), instead of engaging in nature, hobbies to develop himself or interacting with real people. I hadn’t known about this until after I’d already been enamored and charmed by the otherwise gregarious & friendly sportsman who played on my team.

Seems that a number of these black trench coat wearing guys with weapons and ammunition tucked in their coats are playing out an imaginary role, because they have ‘no life’ to engage in to otherwise empower themselves and feel happiness, satisfaction and pride.

Instead, the laziness combined with psychological disturbances and feeling lost in an already misguided society (which puts greed, money and superficial accoutrements ahead of honesty, an esteem for learning and education, curiosity, appreciation and love for life). So that distractions, drugs, games, TV, various stimuli and artificial identifications take place of real life, real people, real engagement and active involvement in things in which one can develop feelings of pride, satisfaction, a sense of achievement and feeling a part of a community.

The drugs of choice differ in the different countries. Otherwise, the fantasy and gaming are the same. The only problem is that in the United States, guns are so easily acquired, like buying a six pack, that the sickest individuals can play out their darkest uncontrolled fantasies of power, devastating the lives of innocent people as fast as it takes to pull a trigger. I think that not only are the manufacturers of weapons to blame, but the dominant war happy country that we live in, the Hollywood idealization of violence and the gun lobby of the narrow minded people who think that their rights are wrapped up in their ‘right’ to protect themselves. I bet that this kid’s mother who bought the weapons in her name, thought that she was doing the right thing, that people need to protect themselves in this ‘dangerous’ world.

However, the more this mentality is toted; of locking doors, fearing strangers and being afraid, the more people will keep buying weapons, and arm themselves. I find the huge number of SUVs that blanket America, sport utility death machines to save their own ass in case they’re involved in an automobile accident also alarming. In which the owner who sports this oversized machine will typically inflict massive damage and more than likely death, to whoever is involved in an accident with them and their over-sized vehicle. Yes, I rant about the U.S., yet there are plenty of countries throughout the world with very misguided priorities and more maligned actions; towards people with less power, woman, animals which can’t defend themselves and the environment. Yet there’s something terribly wrong about this opulent country with a preponderance of fat cars, fat guns, fat houses, fat drug use, fat bodies and fat denial. Yes, I’m angry and listened to this information with tears running down my face.

And it appears that this is the case, looking at the headline in the British newspaper, the Independent “Adam Lanza: A head full of video games and a house full of guns” “When investigators found his computer at the house, the hard drive had been smashed, presumably by Lanza. He is said to have been a fan of computer games featuring warfare and killing.” Perusing the internet on this subject, I also found this article. “College Killer Crazy for Violent Video Game” “The man who gunned down five people and wounded 16 in an Illinois classroom rampage was a loner who preferred studying to partying and was obsessed with an ultra-violent video game, dormitory mates said yesterday.”

And this one in The Daily, “Video Game Killer”, regarding the Norway massacre. “For years, people have been trying to link video games and violence. Yesterday, Norway’s Muslim-hating mass murderer made the connection.Anders Behring Breivik, on trial for last summer’s bombings in Oslo and shooting massacre on an island summer camp that killed 77 people, testified that he used an edition of the first-person shooting game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare to train for his heinous crime.”

In his most recent “Note From Michael Moore“, he states “I’m convinced the majority of Americans will now back strong gun control laws. And a better mental health care system. And perhaps a few are willing to look at the deeper issue of how this country officially sanctions violence as a means to an end…you know all those nuts that fear you’re going to take their guns? You can take their guns now.”

Dr. Drew Pinsky has some thoughtful words to help those people who were immediately involved to heal, and is negotiating and talking with a lot of people to come up with ways to avert these crisis in the future.

I just learned through the Independent News broadcasters, Democracy Now, that there had been another mass shooting in Newtown Australia. “In the wake of the Newtown killings that left 27 people dead on Friday, we go to another New Town — in Australia — the home of a mass shooting that killed 35 people in 1996. Just 12 days after what became known as the Port Arthur massacre, Australia’s government responded by announcing a bipartisan deal to enact gun control measures. There have been no mass killings since. We’re joined by Rebecca Peters, an international arms control advocate who led the campaign to reform Australia’s gun laws after the Port Arthur massacre. She also produced the landmark report, “Gun Control in the United States: A Comparative Survey of State Firearm Laws,” with the Open Society Institute in New York.