Vestigial Appendages

While reading a novel I ran across a humorous sentence—the main character was describing his boss’s mindset against treating others with basic human dignity.  “He viewed doing so as a vestigial appendage”—meaning it was similar to wisdom teeth and the appendix in human anatomy—an unnecessary present-day function and a left-over remnant from an vestigial.jpgancient time.

I chuckled at the reference, thinking it worthy enough of further consideration to have written it down on the napkin beside me. Those two words inspired memory flashes to my ninth grade Biology class—possibly a test question using that same mouthful, multi-syllabic, moniker for “the appendix” that I would eventually have removed forty years later.

In our current world, we deal with society’s vestigial respect dignityappendages all the time, but I wouldn’t call treating people with dignity and respect as one of them. Unfortunately in the last decade, our society has devolved into this particular mindset. We don’t respect others—we don’t respect differing opinions—and we don’t respect those who think differently than we do.

When a presidential candidate, and now The President of the United States, calls people that he wants to demean or diminish by childish, hurtful, disrespectful names, it lowers social mores in general to the level of street-slang and playground taunting.

Hearing a candidate for president doing so is disgusting, but hearing the chief representative of the American people doing it daily is appalling and unacceptable.

The problem, in my humble opinion, is that there are too many other adults who enjoy the childish nature of disrespecting others—too many people in our nation who like to put others down just to feel better than them—too many people who like to feel superior or separate from others for cliques.jpgone fleeting, delusional moment in time and alternate reality.

It’s like reliving junior high all over the nation—with mean-girl cliques and popularity trumping group camaraderie and compassion for all others.

Grow up people!  We are better than this!

Treating people with basic human dignity is NOT a vestigial appendage.

As the Senate now shows its take on the health care bill to the rest of us and many responsibilityviewing it aren’t surprised at the Medicaid cuts to people who need the most help, or the abundant tax cuts for those who need it the least, this situation is simply representative of a far deeper problem: How do we view ourselves in relation to all others around us?

Societies are only as strong as their treatment of the weakest among them. If some members of a society are considered expendable and not worth the rest of our time or expense, then how do you make the determination of where each of us rank in that same scenario?

hands of societyAre we already expendable now or perhaps will we be in another decade or two? Is there an age limit to caring about others? Are others too old, too young, too challenged, too needy, or just too much trouble?

When other people’s problems aren’t presently MY problems, how will I feel when suddenly life flips like it often does and I suddenly need help, and now MY problems aren’t something anyone else wants to deal with?

What we are seeing right now are the warning shots of a aree to respect.jpgGreat Society in peril of losing its sense of humanity—of losing its premise of basic human rights and dignities—of losing compassion for others, or failing to recognize that by one nasty twist of fate, you or I could be on the wrong end of someone else’s refusal for social responsibility.

This is a certainty: That social pendulum has to swing back to center soon or it is just a matter of time before we ALL will be considered vestigial appendages—easily removed from public consideration by a surgical slice—or the slash of a pen.

Do you want to find yourself on the operating table this year or maybe the next?

I know I don’t.strong together.jpg

When UP is DOWN

That’s the bad thing about constant chaos—it destroys your sense of normalcy.

When illusions shatter like fine crystal smashed against stone, what remains is the broken glassreality of hand-cutting, glass shards left to gather; and that seems to be what we are doing most of the time now—constantly collecting the broken pieces of established Presidential protocols.

Critical mass was reached last week in the continuing saga of our Democracy under siege by a self-proclaimed “change-agent” who admires dictators.

The Acting US Attorney General assigned a Special Prosecutor to take over the Trump Campaign/Russian Interference investigations because Congress couldn’t be trusted to not be sppolitically influenced in finding the TRUTH, no matter the consequences; PLUS the President himself was directly interfering in the investigation—particularly by firing the FBI Director who had been leading it. (And then moronically admitting it on national television that it was indeed what he had done.)

However even chaos has its own system of dissolution and realignment. In Literary Criticism, which is “the study, evaluations and interpretation of Literature” (Wikipedia), that system of dissolution and realignment is called Deconstruction.

The effect of Deconstruction is like tearing apart a house just to see what it was made deconstructof—meaning you deconstruct it board by board until you have reached the ground on which it once stood. You may ultimately find your answer to the “what’s it made of?” question but you will unfortunately no longer have a structure to shield you from the harsher elements of life.

It would seem that is what is happening to our Democracy at present—Deconstruction. It is being tested by an unscrupulous agent of CHAOS—even in his own mind—who is attempting to deconstruct our Constitution and three levels of governance in favor of his single-ruler, autocratic aspirations.

Dare to cross him? His signature television quote “YOU’RE FIRED” would be his immediate response to you.

The gut-churning question for many of us was: How long autocracy.jpgwould his autocratic governing tendencies be permitted to continue without congress or the judicial system stepping in to stop him?

 

Well, two days ago a counter shot was fired across Trump’s bow to bring TRUTH and FAIRNESS back to the investigatory process. Perhaps a few congress-people awoke to the fact that without restraints on his attempts to seize more power, there could be public revolts that might affect their own congressional lives. Self-survival seems to be the one thing that they DO understand and will defend.

impeach.jpgImpeachment is a common subject for discussion now on news shows, as is the increased mention of Amendment 25 that I posted previously.

We don’t know where this all will lead. I know I have my preferences, but I will be content to see genuine justice served with fair hearings and investigations into abuses and criminal behaviors of all involved parties, no matter who they might be.

Who knows, perhaps in the near or distant future he himself fired.jpgwill hear those words he made so famous on his pseudo-reality TV show: “YOU’RE FIRED!”

I hope so, because this isn’t HIS “pseudo-reality” that the rest of us are living.

The End of Illusion

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Interesting vlog I listened to yesterday: my favorite layman’s astrologer for those of us who really aren’t that into astrology, Kaypacha Lescher ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQNUCWzfUs0&feature=share ) said some things about the affecting energies of this time period that really resonated with me.

I can legitimately call myself an energy worker since I’ve taught REIKI (a Japanese energy therapy/spiritual practice) for almost twenty years, so I know how personal, collective, and cosmic energies can affect us individually and as a group consciousness.

And as that 20-year REIKI practitioner, I’m also uncomfortably aware of how strong the current light head.jpgenergies are that are flowing through me 24/7/365, by how “woozy” I feel if I have my hands anywhere near my head for a short period of time. The energies flowing into us right now are potent and powerful. Sleep is often hard to come by when your entire body is constantly vibrating with the force of the energy flow pulsing through you.

Lescher was saying that the energies bombarding us all right now are intensely penetrating and are squeezing the remaining illusions right out of us. (I would concur to that because of the old memories suddenly surfacing in my mind-screen for reexamination for no apparent reason.) It’s a time for transformation—for dropping those unhealthy beliefs and removing the blinders from our eyes.

die thousand.jpgIt’s a time to see things not as we wished they were but as they truly were/are, both in the past and in the now.

Basically he says this is the time to GET REAL.

And getting real is not always a pleasant state of mind to inhabit because it forces us to reexamine our every motive and aspiration to see if they were or are in line with our inner TRUTH.

What is the “inner TRUTH” and is it the same TRUTH for everyone?eye.jpg

Inner truth is the “at peace” feeling we have when we do or say something that feels right to us. I’m using very kinesthetic descriptions because inner peace is a body-based truth detector.

When we feel at peace it is a deep sigh of relief from our very core—it taps the essence of us as loving beings enjoying harmonious situations and relationships.

Ruiz.jpgDoes everyone feel this same state of inner peace often called inner TRUTH?

Let’s say it is available to everyone because it simply involves allowing one’s higher soul connection to permeate the physical being that it governs, and in that sense it IS the same inner TRUTH for everyone.

But has everyone actually allowed that higher soul connection to penetrate their body and consciousness so that they can feel at peace to know what peacefulness feels like? I don’t think so.truth.jpg

Therein lies the problem. How do you know what inner peace feels like if you haven’t felt it?

I think Lescher would say we have to be willing to let go of what we’ve always done in difficult situations, or let go of how we’ve always thought about ourselves and our lives to be willing to release the old behavior patterns that are holding us back from realizing our innate abilities to rise above aggression and violence.

plumb line.jpgIt is time to shift out of the old thinking/being patterns and create new thinking/being patterns that bring us back to our inner TRUTH—back to our inner PEACE—back to the purity of our soul that is full of Divine Love and Grace because that’s who we really are.

It is the end of illusion in all forms, and the beginning of recognizing our true soul-essence.

Let go. Release all that does not serve you. And allow these powerful energies pouring into us now to purge the dissonant energies that once ruled your life.

Purging our illusions may not be a pleasant purge—as most purges aren’t pleasant, but they are necessary to remove the toxins from your being, whether physically or mentally.live truth.jpg

The end of illusion means it is actually the beginning of living your TRUTH, and that’s a far better state of being to occupy and to claim as your own.

Perspicacious

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I ran across this word yesterday in a crime novel and not knowing its meaning, I web-searched to find:

“having a ready insight into and understanding of things. SYN: discerning · shrewd · perceptive · astute · penetrating

Ok, …great.  Never knew what it meant, but now I do. So do I use it in every third sentence, or will it slip off my mental horizon as quickly as it emerged?

Yes, it’s more likely to be the latter case especially because in today’s world, perspicaciousness (the intelligence manifested as being astute) is rare.

Who needs to be exceptionally perceptive? How about insightful? I mean where will that get you, eh?

A knowing, penetrating gaze—capable of seeing through deceptions—of what value is that in our lives?

Certainly we can trust everything we hear, and see before us, can’t we? I mean when is discernment ever valued?

For example, would a President or his spokespeople ever intentionally deceive us?

Would some news outlets use their media platform to spread lies or carefully sherlock.jpgmanufactured propaganda like some autocratic dictatorship trying to keep its people in line?

Would disinformation ever be spread by either side of a political campaign to destroy all confidence in the voting process of a democracy?

Well of course not.

That just doesn’t happen in America, right?  What with all our FREEDOMS of press, religion, speech, right to bear arms, right to peaceful protest, etc., those nasty blotches on our freedoms cannot possibly exist, can they?

Yes, I can see that this new word “PERSPICACIOUS” will be gone from my mind as quickly as it arose, because there simply is no need for it.

All is well.  I can easily see that.

Moving Forward

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I’ve time-warped to Wednesday, November 9, 2016 and we have elected a new president to lead the nation for at least four years.

The task of that leadership is daunting—not easily accomplished by a single figure, male or female.

duties.jpg

In truth, the success of a nation and its people is never determined by one person, but that one individual known as The President of the United States of America has immense power to change millions of lives for the better or the worse, i.e.:

  • The use of nuclear weapons offensively or defensively, is a president’s prerogative.
  • Détente among world leaders is a determiner of cooperation and support for global policies.
  • Supportive alliances and multi-nation unity provide firm negotiating tactics for hot-spots around the world. NATO may not be perfect, but at present, it is the best we have.

Yes, on November 9th we will all be praying that change for all of us will be for the better.

We know by now there are no assurances that any policy or stance for or against an issue of importance will reap the benefits portrayed in an election campaign. Life just doesn’t play out that way.3 brances 2.png

And no matter what changes any President suggests or requests, it requires a Congress willing to support it, so there are things a President can do alone, but the majority of major changes need congressional support to enact and fund them. That’s just how federal governance is set up.

So when we all open our sleepy eyes on Wednesday, November 9th, there will be some very happy United States citizens and some not-too-happy ones. The largest challenge from November 9th onward is helping everyone to feel some degree of comfort with the election results and to find a way to make life better for everyone—even those who didn’t support the winning candidate.

That’s what it’s all about—how to make life safer, better and happier for everyone.

crayon2There are a lot more colors in the crayon box besides RED or BLUE. Let’s focus on the beauty of a multicolored pallet to paint a better and brighter future for all Americans.

I’m really tired of all the HATE lingo.

 

How about you?

“American Crime” – Studies in Character

I love a good character study, whether enjoyed through reading a good book or a watching a dramatic presentation.charac quote.jpg

Nothing says “humanity” better than witnessing exposed human foibles and a character’s visually-recorded self-delusion.

It’s the mirror we all stare into but seldom realize who we see because we are so busy watching ourselves acting in different bodies with strange faces that sometimes appeal to or repel us.

This comes as no surprise to anyone who watches it, but our present television offering is the black hole of attention consumption. It sucks away our hours, our days, and our lives. We watch renditions of LIFE rather than actually living it.

And in return, television media gives us…….um,……I mean besides all the blatant money-grubbing advertising, …it basically gives us little other than being an insomniac’s last refuge or a 50-inch, rectangular pacifier.

I wouldn’t even call most viewing options “entertainment” as much as I would call it varied flavors of escapism—escapism geared to your favorite obsession or fear.

So when I, in my own escapist foray, ran across a really good dramatic series based mainly on character study utilizing creative character dissection, I took notice.american crime

I’ve trolled the Netflix options many times. Some series are so-so, some hard to get past the first 4 minutes, and some were fairly interesting. But if you are really into character studies, I would suggest the series called “American Crime.”

It’s certainly not what I expected it to be, and gladly so. The main actors are some of the best, and are well-known in their own rights, but combined together in this unusual format and artistic renditions of “life as it actually is, not as we project it to be” they are superb mirrors of human self-deception, self-destruction, and self/family annihilation.

And that is the ironic title’s claim: “American Crime” – it explores the cultural/societal/legal crimes we commit daily on ourselves, our families, muslim women.jpgand our communities.

Why on earth would that be interesting or entertaining to watch?

Because it is so revelatory in each unveiling episode. You relate to the de-masking of the characters—their proposed aspirations, their genuine woundedness, and seas 2.jpgtheir hidden weaknesses. Through each of their depictions, you see how easy it is to slide away just a little from your own integrity and end up in a complex situation with the sudden choice of now facing the evolved problem head on, or trying to bury it deeper in even greater deception coupled with harsher future consequences. (Hint: they all go for the latter one.)

What I liked most about the two season series other than showing the same actors in alternate character universes, was that there really were no clear good guys—no clear child protectbad guys depicted in the show. There were no easily distinguished heroes and no pure villains, although some were implied and assumed until proven not to be.

In each season’s dramatic character exposition, there were only flawed people like you and me, making one or two choices that led to violent repercussions and forever tainted lives because of their simple acts of greed, lust, loneliness or self-loathing.character are you

The most prevalent theme I took from both seasons was that all of us need love and acceptance, openness and understanding. But without those necessities, we live shallow, deceptive, and destructive lives that eventually implode.

It isn’t that our lives are fated to be that way—it’s that we choose our fates because of those unmet needs.

And that is the biggest crime.

To Know…

I’d been stewing about the world’s tumultuous situations, and had just been thinking that “the older I get, the less I really know” when I ran across this image and quote: “To know, is to know that you know nothing. That is the true knowledge.” (Socrates)socrates quote.jpg

It was suddenly apparent to me how “knowledgeable” I had already become, because I truly know so very little.

Over the years, I’ve found that people seldom ask for advice; and even when they do ask, it is more so as a confirmation to their own way of thinking rather than for a counter-statement to be considered.

It isn’t that they wish to be suddenly awakened from their existing ignorance. It is only that they wish to believe that they are NOT ignorant because they believe things to be a certain way.  It is far less about “knowing” and actual wisdom accrued, and more about reaffirming their “belief and opinion” on the subject in question, whether substantiated or not.

Because to truly “know” is to understand how limited our present state of consciousness is to comprehending anything but the simplest of situations and motives.

I mean seriously, …just look at that image. Look at the birth and death dates for Socrates himself: 469 – 399 BC.  It would appear that he must have lived his life backwards in time. 70 years of walking backwards to us in the present was actually a forward gait toward free-thought and refusal to bend to political pressure.

The apparent time paradox is that a particular point in time was chosen for the historical reference point of Western civilization, i.e.: the Gregorian Calendar’s approximate birth of Jesus the Christ, which meant that anything that happened prior to that approximated date was designated as Before Christ, or BC, and counted backward as it approached that birth date.  Likewise, anything after that date was designated as Anno Domini, or AD, and greek calendar.jpgcounted forward from that date. The Gregorian Calendar is pretty specific on one particular religion’s chief priority date.

But to Socrates when he was actually living his life forward in what was then considered a Greek calendar—probably Athenian, he lived 70 years facing forward toward his death date, not backwards away from it.

Here’s a historical “calendar” comparison for the date and year of January 1, 2000:

 

Calendar Date
Gregorian 1 January 2000
Babylonion Year 2749
Buddhist Year 2544
Chinese Cycle 78, year 16 (Ji-Mao), month 11 (Wu-Yin), day 25 (Wu-Wu)
Egyptian Year 6236
Ethiopian 23 Takhsas 1993
French Décade II, Duodi de Nivôse de l’Année 208 de la Révolution
Greek 22 Kiyahk 1716
Hebrew 23 Teveth 5760
Islamic 24 Ramadan 1420
ISO Day 6 of week 52 of year 1999
Julian 19 December 1999
Mayan Long count = 12.19.6.15.0; tzolkin = 9 Ahau; haab = 8 Kankin
Persian 11 Dey 1378

 

Now does the Gregorian Calendar really depict all known historical events in a true chronological timeline from the first recorded civilizations until the present?   Not really. It is pretty focused on regional significance within a Christian-based context.

The next image is a chronological timeline of known world civilizations depicted per the Gregorian Calendar’s BC/AD point of reference just to give a little additional perspective to civilizations prior to that BC/AD designation date.

timeline.JPG

The only thing I “KNOW” for certain in this writing honoring the wisdom of Socrates, is that a single-point perspective and an observer’s reference points are key determiners when assessing any situation and for defining the motives of all involved in decision making.

It doesn’t mean that one or two folks have all the answers to the world’s problems.

But it does mean that the world has come a long way in various stages of development to have reached the present world situations.  And no single perspective or point of reference should be the determiner of how those problems are resolved. It has to be a group effort.

As it presently stands, I may not “KNOW” much.  But I do “KNOW” that.