Sunday, March 22, 2009

stuff of dreams

I am (obviously) a creature of the night, and alone is where I live and breathe. I think as a constant companion and entertainment. I like to think big picture, unending sky, opening universe. I see us all (not just the humans, not just the living, not just the earthlings, not just this solar system, galaxy, dimension) as if individual cells together, each by our own natural being, comprising the Universe of All, which expands eternally, changing, interactions chemical and metaphysical. What more could we possibly need? Why limit God to a caricature of man?

There seems to be an attitude of entitlement, shades of Protestant predestination, that we who have are the holy. If you don't have, it is proof of your undeservingness. There also seems to be a myth ongoing that jobs, means to livelihood, are given beneficently to uplift the undeserving. We all know that good capitalists give nothing away, in fact do their best to get the most value for the least cost. We know the very basis of capitalism is he with the capital gets to make wealth from the work of the laborer. Still, the laborer without gainful employment is a leech, while the hoarder of wealth is the hero to be emulated. I do hope the paradigm is shifting toward greater sanity.

I never did understand the whole socialism as a gift of Satan attitude. It's just an economic theory, like, say, capitalism. In real practice we get kind of a hodge-podge of historically evolving methods to make sense of chaos.

I seem to remember that in the booming fifties highest tax rates were in the 90% range, savings banks regularly offered 5% interest on small savings, corporations pulled their weight and were expected to adhere to regulations, and we actually manufactured most of what we used. Was this an alternate universe memory?

it seems to me that the higher tax rates would encourage greater creativity and allow for new entrepreneurs better access to the game. If businesses get too big and want to move to other pastures, then we can fill the vacuum with better, smaller businesses. It's not the "punitive" tax rates but sheer greedy cowardice that keeps money from flowing to keep the body economic in good health.

Do we have similar definitions of "atheist" which I understand as a belief in the nonexistence of godlike entities? There is no need for a conscious creator who meddles in every aspect of that creation like a hovering parent. That idea is comforting, I suppose, for those who wish to bask in a false sense of childhood. There is The Universe, All that Is, which includes all of us and everything we are/do/feel/believe, along with everyone and everything else. What more do we need?

I think language makes something very simple seem complex. It is not that nature or the Universe is "god" -- an independent conscious being. It is that All is interconnected and creates an overall spiritual reality, like cells making up a body, each being its own individual cell-system, and altogether organized as a multi-celled system.

Actually poverty, illness, death, these are all accepting the rules of "God" -- All of Life, The Universe, Everything is what is meant by "God" and all of these experiences, no matter how we label them or feel about them, are part of being human, which is our part of "god".

White is purity
cold somber reason
and floating dreams
Winter's the season
turning inward,
reflecting light
sunbeams in drifting snow
casting shadows of
warm decay
that we may
find those treasures hidden
in the fall.

It seems to me, from my limited life experience, that we all face
serious threats, traumas, overwhelming situations, as just part of
the normal stream of life. Creativity seems to be a way of seeing
the glass as not full or empty, but awaiting fullness, taking
sustenance from the drinking, finding another source of fluid to

Those who would dominate came up with "sins" so onerous, so routine, that none could escape their own natural "badness." Thus it becomes easy to scapegoat, keep the rabble in line, promote hatred and divisiveness, and proclaim the Divine Right to Destined Virtue and Reward for themselves.

The attitude toward childhood in this culture is based on fantasy. I was not "abused" in the sense that we tend to think of, yet I was "spanked" and made to feel lowly, useless, without recourse. Children are not pets or a second chance or blessings to be discouraged from sin by not sparing the rod. Children are actual human beings, living actual lives, not just readying for the future. We, written large, show disrespect, do not honor, think it great fun or worthy of a high five to denigrate each other. This is the lesson of childhood.

The paradigm shift we need is an understanding of education not as an institution, a degree, or sitting in a classroom but our lifelong processes of learning how to be, do, create, critique, acquire/improve skills. Meanwhile, and I am hoping part of this crisis/opportunity of worldwide economics will eventually help point this out, the marketplace should be sensitive to the actual abilities of those selling services, quality of goods sold, rather than some hype-related fluffier.

everyone has their eye and flapping lips all over how this guy Obama is falling behind here, too far there, not the messiah we paid for, et al. As I recall, we basically ignored W. until after 9/11. Obviously that was not the right course. However, this President has been in office for like a few days, and he is already going gangbusters in getting as much done as he can in the face of blowhard obstructionists, second-guessers and the slow grind of bureaucracy. I say, let's give him a break and some time to see what he can do; meanwhile I think we have plenty of yes we canning of our own to work on.

She loved the world of screaming suns and malignant moons. It carried her emptiness into blazing symphonies that only she would dance within. In quiet dreams it pleased her to believe she sought another. None would appear with the grace to dance just so, to harmonize her music.

It's all quite muddled. Science, though often used as a system of beliefs or basic core from which such beliefs grow, is meant to be a systematic method for discerning what things are how things work what is this world in which we find ourselves. Religion, though purporting to be about spiritual truth is meant to be about holding groups together through a common culture and shared beliefs. Philosophy is about applying science to higher truths to learn The Truth, but is generally given less credence than "science" or "religion".

let me ask if this is just weird me or the norm: do you experience that extra sense that's a combination of all of them plus some others, that almost palpable below threshold reverberating, kind of like a molecular net between everything that keeps it a whole experience?

The President is not a god or magician. He is a politician who has been elected to do a job. When our government is running according to the old separation of powers model, he has very little real power over domestic concerns. The greatest power he has is that oratory and leadership ability to mobilize the people to do the work we need to do for our mutual benefit. If the private sector were doing the job of creating wealth that we seem to think is theirs, we would not be having this discussion at all. Blaming Obama for a situation that built up over years before he even ran for office is not solving or improving anything. Bringing up the oh so spooky boogieman of "socialism" the spectre from Satan to overtake and destroy mankind just shows ignorance of the difference between theory and real world compromises.

Why didn't Congress, instead of creating this bailout monster, require those who held the "toxic" "assets" to sell the mortgages and car loans to local financial institutions with a vested interest in renegotiating or otherwise selling or renting these homes or other actual assets, unpacking the whole "toxic" mess? A lot less money would have enabled a reasonable guarantee to make acquiring these assets more attractive to the local lenders and to offset tax deductions from the investors' losses on selling the toxins low.

Do you remember about Thomas Aquinas and the whole Christian scientific/philosophic inquiry tradition? How about the Gnostics? The very hemmed-in sectarian kind of Christian philosophy we seem to be best acquainted with is not the true Christianity, but a version sanitized for easy marketing: Christian Capitalism, or is it capitalist christianity?

The "fiscal conservative" Republican anti-government strategies have been well voiced and explained by those adhering to those concepts. It is not meant to be a trick. Unfortunately, they have it all mixed up. Cutting taxes to the wealthy to cut back on government spending is pure foolishness. The spending still happens. We get more debt. Republicans get to go all ballistic about poor fiscal planning . Then it comes up that it was their own unintended consequences coming home to roost.

As the commentators are finally admitting, it is not Social Security but Medicare that is the big financial drain. This is because of the seriously messed up way we handle medical care in this country.

I think a big part of the problem is that people are not encouraged to know more about how our bodies work, what kinds of symptoms are worthy of serious concern, how to be aware of our own daily health and issues such as stress. We are encouraged to be a dependent people seeking the word of authority.

The qualities of sam-e to ameliorate joint pain and depression led me to think about the theory of depression as a reaction to chronic pain, physical/emotional/metaphysical. It's not an illness, but a symptom, like fever, a consequence of the organism's defense system.

I recently heard that California is considering legalizing and taxation of marijuana to get them out of their financial mess. Perhaps this is the time, when people are more concerned about real problems than the spectre of legal pot.

healing balm of Spring
washing winter sorrows
in hope of warm tomorrows
the flowering they bring

nature's gift of calm acceptance
vibrant interlocution
thoughtful breath
take in, release

It's not that mental illness is a myth. It's that it is not necessarily an illness. Obviously what we eat affects us in ways we have not yet studied. Every aspect of our environment affects us in ways we have not yet studied. As far as I can tell much of what is called "mental illness" is really about distortions of learning how to relate in the social world. Observable brain effects which are associated with "mental illness" are the physical manifestations in the mind/brain system. We don't know whether these observable effects are causing the behaviors, or if the behaviors manifest physically thus causing the brain effects. This gets further confused when there are chemical interventions (psychiatric drugs) with their own effects. Quite possibly the stress reactions from living over time in perceived hostile environments do manifest as changes in the brain and in behaviors. As best as I can tell there is no magic bullet cure for the dis-eases manifest in terms of chemistry or surgery. The most effective treatment seems to be about encouraging the healing and resilience of the "patient" through compassionate interaction, and finding activities/beliefs/goals that offer more purposeful and healthful ways of being.

We seem to shy away from the realities of suffering, to
mask or cure or carry forward with a stiff upper lip. Of course we
want the benefits of medical science to ease suffering, cure disease
and heal wounds. That ought not take from the dignity and important
lessons found through painful circumstance. Perhaps we would do
better with honest rituals to honor and celebrate these aspects of
our lives, while doing our best to rationally and compassionately
work toward health.

Why should anyone dictate what others may ingest? Oh, you are paying for their healthcare costs? So you can watch them (say on videocam) and dictate their every move? And what about you? What about that woman you convinced to have sex without protection? What about those over the counter pills you can't do without? What about the side effects from your sleep aids or pms controllers or ed eradicators or anti-depressants that turn you into a homicidal zombie or require pill to cure the side effects of pill to cure the side effects of pill to cure the side effects of?

From my observations, liberals attempt to take in everyone by expanding their tolerance for differences while conservatives attempt to take in everyone by exhorting sameness in attitudes and beliefs. Thus, when a conservative seems to be accusing their opponent of x ("You Idiot!") they are venting the frustration they feel for your obvious wrongheadedness. The issue you are debating, of course, has only one true attitude and belief to adhere to, which would be theirs.

Those haranguing against stem cell research, you have the wrong cause. The people who manufactured embryos for artificial impregnation are the ones who altered "God's plan." Those who are using these discarded embryos (tossed out by their parents) to find cures for children who are alive, loved, and part of a social fabric is in essence a way to make lemonade out of lemons, just what a good parent/God would want. Do you find it evil when parents donate the organs of their dead children that other children might live?

In my experience meth producers and sellers are in business to sell a product. Don't buy if you don't like. Protect your children and families by having real honest conversations, not just about meth. Get the facts and spread them. I have seen young adults lose their teeth, ruin their skin, have their hair turn white and thin, not to mention the paranoia, general jumpiness, and opening to whatever illness is around due to general malaise. It is not a worthwhile habit. Meditation works ever so much better, along with enjoyable exercise, to boost energy and metabolism.

It's not that some meds can't help. It's that there are methods that do not have the nasty side-effects of most meds, don't have the expense, can be usefully used without a prescription or medical interference. Taking meds is a crap shoot, and then when you find something that "works" often it stops working or has unbearable effects. I come more and more to the view that what we label mental illness is often not an illness, but a problem in social interaction or communication or conceptual understanding, better addressed by education than drugs.

Evolution, Conscious Divinity sending out bolts of energy and matter and saying: "Let there be life!" Whatever. Just blind moths in the darkness burning for the light.

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