Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding Instead of....

As I write this, the Royal Wedding is ending. Thank, God! Enough is enough! If the Queen puts her fork down, you put your fork down; Kate’s brother is alleged to be a cross-dresser; three dictators were invited, you and I weren’t; every woman in the Abbey had to wear a hat, who knew they were orthodox? But leave it to the Brits to get it wrong – it’s the guys who are supposed to wear the hats.

This is right up there with the Donald and the birthers. The weather’s changing as witnessed by the horrible tornadoes in the part of the USA known as ‘god’s country,’ the bastion of Republican reaction; the oil companies are making obscene profits, but we have to give them a tax refund of 4 billion dollars (so they’ll explore for more and get us off our dependence on foreign oil, all the while they sit on leases, and the oil that might come at the risk of polluting our beaches would not be enough to get us off our ‘dependence’) on top of the soon to be $4 a gallon you and I are paying; the Middle East is going through some serious changes; etc, and we get the wedding as the major news story.

Talk about diverting public opinion and bread and circuses. Oh, they say, we need some good news for a change. True, but bottom line, this is only two people getting married, which may or may not be good news. At least they’re heterosexual. The ‘fascination’ with the trappings of royalty and the spectacle and the huge expenditures, is that good news, too?

Rarely has the contradiction between American ideals and American reality been so apparent. One can only hope that the folks that think all of this is OK, or ‘business as usual’ or even good wake up before it’s too, late for the rest of us.

The Course says, if I, and you, are not experiencing the peace of God, it is because we are not offering it. If our brothers speak not of peace to us, we spoke not of peace to them. Regardless of the ego actions of others, our perception has only to do with a decision our own minds make. It’s like what my mother always told me when, as a kid, and wanted what the neighbors had or saw on TV, it doesn’t matter about them, you live here….

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Do We Really Need to Clean-up Pollution?

“For most Americans,” says Michael Brune, CEO, Sierra Club, “cleaning up pollution isn’t an ideological issue; it’s just common sense. Asthma is epidemic among our kids. The list of potentially cancer-causing chemicals in our drinking water keeps getting longer. Lead, mercury, arsenic and other toxic heavy metals are building up in our bodies.

“But guess what? Commonsense citizens are not the ones calling the shots in Congress. Instead, polluter-funded politicians are doing their paymasters; bidding. For example, the largest donors to members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee are oil billionaires David and Charles Koch, whose many polluting businesses are regulated by the EPA. Accordingly, a top goal of the committee is to restrict the EPA’s power; 9 out of 12 Republicans on the committee have signed a Koch-sponsored pledge to prevent the EPA from limiting greenhouse-gas pollution.

“The paid apologists for the Kochs and other polluters say we can’t afford to clean up, the fact is we can’t afford not to. The healthcare costs from coal-fired power plant pollution are greater than those from smoking. At a time when healthcare is the single biggest contributor to our national deficit, preventing needless illness has an enormous economic benefit.”

“Truth,” The Course in Miracles says, “does not come and go nor shift nor change, evading capture and escaping grasp. It does not hide. It stands in open light, in obvious accessibility. It is impossible that anyone could seek it truly, and not succeed.”

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

We Seek Only the Truth Which is Already Ours

Catastrophic floods put half of the Wes African country of Benin and much of northeaster Australia underwater – Sierra Club

More than half of the incoming Republican members of Congress do no believe global warming is real, or, if it is, it’s caused by human activity – Sierra Club

We do not have to drive or push but we must accept and believe – Science of Mind

Truth does not come and go nor shift nor change. It stands in open light, in obvious accessibility. It is impossible that anyone could seek it truly, and would not succeed – Course in Miracles

If I, and you, do not feel the truth and comfort of our reality as spirit, it is because we have not sought it, because we fear the light of our oneness as spirit and prefer the darkness of our individual ego identities.

The shaky, unsteady footsteps of illusion are no longer for us. We screw up our courage and ask for what belongs to us in truth, asking the decision making part of our minds to choose the truth of our reality as spirit instead of the ego’s nightmare illusions. Since we are asking only for truth, we cannot fail. Illusions have no power once we withdraw our belief in them.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished?

Update on a Christian Science Monitor story: West Bank Tragedy. Juliano Mer-Khamis received international acclaim for his Freedom Theatre, located in a refugee camp in Jenin. As the son of a Jewish mother and a Palestinian Christian father, he was marked as a traitor by both sides. He was shot and killed by gunmen in Jenin on April 4th.

A well know Israeli actor, Mer-Khamis had reopened the theater in 2006. It had been a long time project of his mother, Arna Mer, but had closed at her death in 1995. He was deeply persuaded of “the magic of the stage” to transform young lives.

He told the Monitor in 2007, of the remarkable progress his young male charges had made in just a month – youths that residents had warned were bad news. “The difference is astonishing,” he said. “They’re learning about respect, cooperation, togetherness.” They were destined for leadership, he said. What kind – with a gun or a guitar, is their choice. I really hope it’s a guitar. But in the end, this the Freedom Theatre.” Palestinian police arrested a suspect reportedly linked to Hamas.

The journey to awakening from the ego’s nightmare to spirit’s happy dream is a process. We do not have to be perfectly free of our egos. The necessary condition for awakening is not that I, you, too, have no thoughts that are not pure; only no ‘impure’ thoughts – thoughts of anger, blame, fear, frustration, that we would keep or justify.

We are not asked to be without the body and its needs, but merely to shift their purpose from the ego’s nightmare to spirit’s happy dream. This shift does not guarantee there will be no pain or difficulty, but that pain and difficulty can be undone by realizing their cause isn’t in the external, or in a failure to have our needs met, but in the internal choice to identify with the ego instead of spirit.

Monday, April 25, 2011

You Don't Want to Miss That

"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, to make it possible."
- Lawrence of Arabia (1888-1935)

"Every man with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds... Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
- Mark Twain (1835-1910)

"Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway."
- Earl Nightingale

“If you don’t prepare yourself, the inner experience is not going to happen.” Story Musgrave, flew on six space shuttle missions in a 30 year career with NASA. “I tried very hard to get space. It takes real work to have the best experience.” Too many of his colleague told him they regretted blasting off, then losing the whole amazing experience in the tasks at hand. “Day and night passes, you see the aurora, shooting stars flash by, the moon races over the river of ocean. You don’t want to miss that.”

How real is that? Musgrave’s observations apply to everything in life, don’t they?

Friday, April 22, 2011


When I did my run this morning, as I do every morning, I was noticing the logos on the parked cars, proud of my ability to name the manufacturers and I realized, as I looked at the trees lining the road and driveways, that I knew the names of car makers but not the names of the trees. Hmm…. What does that say about me and the civilization I’m part of?
The Course explains that we are reluctant to accept our reality as spirit and receive and give the gifts of God, because we would then loose our identity as individual egos. Though at one level, we like the idea of having the peace and joy of God, at a seemingly more fundamental level, we fear the loss of our reality as individuals and the ‘nothingness’ of being one with spirit, even if being an individual means experiencing the cost of separation from God - fear, anger, pain and suffering.

So, if someone ‘makes’ me angry, I need to realize that I want to be made angry, for that allows me to keep my individuality intact. Temptation has no power unless I (and you) want to be tempted. It is the wish to remain an individual that interferes with knowing God’s peace and joy is ours. The antidote is to appreciate that whenever I am upset, it’s another chance to receive spirit’s gifts by releasing my (and your) investment in our ‘special’ individuality and the pain, guilt, blame, fear and anger, that go with it.

Doing this also works if we are doing it to ourselves - when we’re tempted to blame and attack ourselves for some perceived failing or limitation. My body and personality are as much outside my ‘right mind,’ my reality as spirit, as are my brother’s. Thus, the chance to let ourselves receive the gifts of spirit – peace, joy, love, compassion, and know them as ours and our reality in truth, is not only when someone else tempts us to attack them, but when we are tempted to attack ourselves.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

We Have Met the Enemy, and They Is Us

I accept God’s gifts of peace and joy. God’s peace and joy are mine. God’s gifts never lessen when they are given away, they only increase. In fact, the only way I know I have peace and joy and can experience them is by sharing them, by giving them away. Think, of those brothers who I have labeled ‘enemies’ and have thus denied “the peace and joy that are their right under the equal laws of God. Here you denied them to yourself. And here you must return to claim them as your own.”

Sharing God’s gifts and praying for others, if rightly understood, becomes a means of lifting my own projections of guilt from my brother, and enable me to recognize it is not he who is hurting me. “The poisonous thought that he is your enemy, your evil counterpart, your nemesis must be relinquished before you can be saved from guilt.” Seeing my enemies differently, as brothers who have been denied their peace and joy which are their right under the equal laws of God, helps me reconsider my perceptions of others and myself, correcting my perceptions from separate to shared interests.

It’s all about learning to accept and share spirit’s gifts, my birthright (and yours), by correcting my misperceptions. In the end, as Pogo said, “we have met the enemy and it is us,” and realize there is no one to forgive, no enemy out there. The ‘enemy’ is simply my (and your) faulty decision making, choosing the ego’s nightmare instead of spirit’s happy dream.

Re-thinking and re-labeling our ‘enemies’ is a never-ending process, requiring mindfulness and desire, love and compassion, but it is oh so worth while! Catching your self blaming, fearing, hating, judging, and punishing is, when seen with spirit, an opportunity to reclaim God’s gifts of peace and joy by sharing them and choosing to see your ‘enemy’ as your brother.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Difference Between Happiness and Joy

The difference between happiness and joy. Though I experience both as ephemeral, I’m coming to understand that joy – deep, rich, heart-felt joy, is of spirit, and happiness is of the ego. Happiness seems to arise when external circumstances go as expected or surpass expectations. So I’m happy when I see you, or taste something good, or wake up without aches and pains, raring to go. Joy is an inner experience and doesn’t depend on external events. It arises spontaneously, often paired with the peace that passeth understanding, independently of my judgments about external events and often in spite of my judgments of them. So I’m stuck in traffic and suddenly feel a deep sense of joy and peace. Or I’m in the dentist’s chair with the high speed drill whining and I feel a deep peace and hint of joy.

The internal/external, spirit/ego distinction between joy and happiness is important because with one, happiness, my feelings are dependent on events seemingly beyond my control, while with joy, I am in control and have a choice. Joy is my birthright as a child of spirit (yours, too) and we can experience it no matter what’s going on in and around us, by remembering who and what we are; saying enough to the ego’s nightmare; wanting to shift to our reality in spirit; then allowing spirit to awaken us – letting go of our individual ego identities, getting our bloated nothingness out of the way.

Then too, happiness being dependent on externals, requires a bit more work and is an ‘if/then’ proposition – if I get the job, the parking space, the date, I’ll be happy. Tho, we can also be happy by shifting from ego to spirit and experience the happy dream instead of the nightmare, what’s important is not feeling like a victim at the mercy of external events. Both happiness and joy can arise from the inside-out, from shifting from ego to spirit. The thing is, if we go for joy more often than we go for happiness, we will be building spiritual muscle and a commitment to our reality as spirit and begin experiencing both more joy and more happiness.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Business As Usual? con'd

“While I dance I cannot judge, I cannot hate, I cannot separate myself from life. I can only joyful and whole. That is why I dance,” Hans Bos.

“When you have come to the edge…and are about to drop off into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on, or you will be taught to fly,” Patrick Overton

Yesterday, I wrote that unless we’re motivated to shift from the ego’s nightmare to spirit’s happy dream, unless we experience a need to shift, had enough of the ego’s BS and want spirit’s peace and joy instead, we will not shift and things will stay as they are. The idea/belief that what’s going on in American political discourse is business as usual because all politicians lie, prevents us from experiencing the need to shift. So called ‘conservatives’ are serial liars beyond anything the USA has experienced in recent history.

“There is little that is truly conservative about what we are seeing,” Pitts says. “No, this is extremism , true believers so rigidly committed to their ideological crusades that they feel justified in vandalizing reason and sacrificing integrity in furtherance of their cause. The end justifies any means. So, as was the case with Jon Kyle, if you can’t prove your point with the facts at hand, make up some and prove it with those.

“It says much about the intellectual state of what passes for conservatism and the intellectual state of the union itself that this sort of behavior has become business as usual, just another day. This cannot end well. To continue down this path is to carve out a future of intellectual incoherence and international irrevlevance, to doom ourselves to yet more of a fractured political discourse that is loud, ignorant and incapable of reason, much less resolution.”

Monday, April 18, 2011

Business As Usual?

We can’t awaken from the fear, hatred, dread and blaming of the ego’s nightmare to our reality as spirit’s love, peace, joy and compassion, until we realize there is a choice, that we can see the world differently. Instead of looking at the world with ego and seeing fear, hatred, dread and blaming, we can look with spirit and experience love, peace, joy and compassion.

But to do this, to shift, we must realize that there is an alternative to the ego world. We must be motivated to see things differently, to choose another way. We must say enough to fear, hatred, dread and blaming and want love, peace, joy and compassion instead. Such a shift requires motivation, an inner choice. But we will not be motivated to do the inner work necessary to make this shift if one, we see no alternative, and two, don’t think there’s even a need for an alternative.

The idea and belief that what’s going on now in American political discourse – that all politicians lie, and Democrats lie as much as Republicans - is business as usual, suggests that there’s no need for an alternative, no need to shift, that it’s always been the way it is now and there’s no need to shift, it’s just business as usual.

Thus, the idea of business as usual in American political discourse is promulgated by those who see no need to change what’s going on now, perhaps because one, they don’t know what’s going on now, or two, have no standards of descent public discourse nor recollection of a time when discourse was civil and honest compromise was possible, or three, are somehow benefiting from things as they are now and want them to continue.

I suggest that the state of political discourse and decision making in the USA is not business as usual, that Democrats do not lie as much as so-called Conservatives and Republicans, that there is a need for a change, and we need to say enough to fear, hatred, dread and blaming and YES! to love, peace, joy and compassion instead.

Of course lying, fear, hatred, dread and blaming and YES! to love, peace, joy and compassion instead are not the province of one party. But, as Leonard Pitts Jr. said in his column yesterday, “when it comes to serial lying, to the biggest, most brazen, most audacious lies, the lies repeated ad nauseam until people mistake them for the truth [which was Nazi propagandist Joseph Geobles, ‘big lie’ concept], when it comes to the most absolute contempt for the facts and for the necessity of honest debate, it’s not even close. [So-called] conservatives have no equal.” Democrats and Republicans are not the same, it is not business as usual.

Pitts goes on to say that Politifact, the fact checking organization, has six categories for judging a statement’s veracity: true, mostly true, half true, barely true, false, and “Pants of Fire,” from the old school yard taunt of “liar, liar, pants on fire.” Liar, Liar means not only are the statements untrue, they also make some ridiculous claim. Pitts reviewed 100 such statements and by his count, of the 70 that originated with an identifiable individual or group (as opposed to a chain email or miscellaneous source) sixty-one, 61, were from the political right. That includes Rush Limbaugh saying President Obama is going to take away your right to fish, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer saying beheaded bodies are being found in the desert, and Sarah Palin claiming death panels will stalk the elderly – 90% of the most audacious lies coming from the so-called conservatives.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Anti Israel Boycott

Superb email sent to the Methodists regarding their call for Israel boycott
please circulate widely
TO: The General Secretary of the Methodist Church and Connexial Team.

Dear Sir,
In your annual conference you have passed a policy calling for a boycott of goods from “illegal” Israeli West Bank settlements”.
You claim this is not anti-Semitic. But how else do you explain this strange obsession with Israel? What about the Chinese occupation of Tibet; or the Sudanese slaughter in Darfur, persecution in Zimbabwe and elsewhere?
Politically, one could probably compile a case for a boycott against just about every country on the planet, but the only country in the world being subjected to a call for a boycott is Israel.
The so-called West Bank has been Jewish for more than 3000 years. A large part was known as Judea. Jesus, a Jew, was born there. Who do you imagine lived in Judea, if not the Jews? Who lived in Hebron but the Hebrews? The name Bethlehem is Hebrew. Only the Jews, of all the people in the world, living in their own land, are besmirched by being called illegal settlers.
Israel is monstrously depicted as Apartheid, notwithstanding the fact that one fifth of her population is Israeli Arab with full rights. The Palestinians claim the West Bank as theirs and require the land to be Juden Frei. And just who are the “Palestinians”? Palestine has never existed as an autonomous entity. There is no language known as Palestinian. There is no distinct Palestinian culture. There has never been a land known as Palestine governed by Palestinians. There has never been a King of Palestine. Palestinians are Arabs, indistinguishable from Jordanians, Syrians, Lebanese, Iraqis, etc. The "Palestinian" leader Yasser Arafat was an Egyptian. They have no claim on the West Bank. Israel is not wrongfully "occupying" or “settling” anything. Israel is currently the subject of a demonization and misinformation campaign put out by Arab sources and propelled with a strong anti-Semitic undercurrent.

The Arab world is spewing out anti-Semitism unequalled since the Hitler era. It is so pervasive, many Jews are being infected.
Israel is portrayed as the most evil state on the planet. Why are you so obsessed with Israel, yet say nothing about the persecution of Christians? According to Justus Reid Weiner, an international human rights lawyer, the dwindling Christian communities in Palestinian-run territories are likely to dissipate completely within the next 15 years as a result of increasing Palestinian maltreatment: "The systematic persecution of Christian Arabs living in Palestinian areas is being met with nearly total silence by the international community, human rights activists, and the media." Your boycott of Israeli “settlements” is, of course, the prelude to a boycott of all Israel. I trust you are preparing a complete boycott of everything coming out of Israel. Check all your medications. An Israeli company has developed a simple blood test that distinguishes between mild and more severe cases of Multiple Sclerosis.
So, if you know anyone suffering from MS, tell them to ignore the Israeli patent that may, more accurately, diagnose their symptoms. An Israeli-made device helps restore the use of paralyzed hands. This device electrically stimulates the hand muscles, providing hope to millions of stroke sufferers and victims of spinal injuries. If you wish to remove this hope of a better quality of life to these people, go ahead and boycott Israel. Young children with breathing problems will soon be sleeping more soundly, thanks to a new Israeli device called the Child Hood. This innovation replaces the inhalation mask with an improved drug delivery system that provides relief for child and parent. Please tell anxious mothers that they shouldn't use this device because of your passionate cause. These are just a few examples of how people have benefited medically from Israeli research and developments.
Boycotts often affect research. A new research centre in Israel hopes to throw light on brain disorders such as depression and Alzheimer's disease. The Joseph Sangol
Neuroscience Center in the Sheba Medical Center at Tel HaShomer Hospital, aims to bring thousands of scientists and doctors to focus on brain research. A researcher at Israel's Ben Gurion University has succeeded in creating human monoclonal antibodies which can neutralize the highly contagious smallpox virus without inducing the dangerous side effects of the existing vaccine.
Two Israelis received the 2004 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Doctors Ciechanover and Hershko's research and discovery of one of the human cells most important cyclical processes will lead the way to DNA repair, control of newly produced proteins, and immune defense systems. The Movement Disorder Surgery program at Israel's Hadassah Medical Centre has successfully eliminated the physical manifestations of Parkinson's disease in a select group of patients with a deep brain stimulation technique. For women who undergo hysterectomies each year for the treatment of uterine fibroids, the development in Israel of the Ex Ablate 2000 System
is a welcome breakthrough, offering a non-invasive alternative to surgery. Israel is developing a nose drop that will provide a five year flu vaccine.
These are just a few of the projects that you can help stop with your Israel boycott.
Most of Windows operating systems were developed by Microsoft-Israel. So, throw away your computer. Computers should have a sign attached saying Israel Inside. The Pentium NMX Chip technology was designed at Intel in Israel. Both the Pentium 4 microprocessor and the Centrum processor were entirely designed, developed, and produced in Israel. Voice mail technology was developed in Israel. The technology for the AOL Instant Messenger ICQ was developed in 1996 in Israel by four young
Israeli whiz kids. Both Microsoft and Cisco built their only R & D facilities outside the US in Israel.
Get rid of your mobile phone. This technology was also developed in Israel by Motorola which has its biggest development centre in Israel. Most of the latest technology in your mobile phone was developed by Israeli scientists. Part of your personal security rests with Israeli inventiveness, borne out of our urgent necessity to protect and defend our lives from the terrorists you support. A phone can remotely activate a bomb, or be used for tactical communications by terrorists, bank robbers, or hostage-takers. It is vital that official security and police have access to cellular jamming and detection solutions. Israel's Net line Communications Technologies has the security expertise to help the fight against terror.
Israel has the highest concentration of hi-tech companies outside of Silicon Valley. Israel has more museums per capita. Israel has the second highest publication of new books per capita. Relative to population, Israel is the largest immigrant absorbing nation on earth. These immigrants come in search of democracy, religious freedom or expression, economic opportunity, and quality of life. Israel is the only country in the world which had a net gain in the number of trees last year.
Israel is making a massive contribution to the world, including the Palestinians -- and to you -- in science, medicine, communications and security.
Pro rata for population, Israel is making a greater contribution than any other nation on earth. And what is the Arab world doing? Buying rockets and missiles and
Threatening to wipe Israel off the face of the earth. The call by your church to boycott Israel, which is the intention, reeks of the stench of anti-Semitism. You should all hang your heads in shame.

Yours faithfully,
Gerald Oberman.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

One Problem, One Solution

California regulators OK a new carcinogenic pesticide for strawberries to replace the old carcinogenic pesticide they outlawed – Sierra Club

Catastrophic floods put half of the West African country of Benin and much of northeastern Australia under water – Sierra Club

“Great art is precisely that which never was nor will be taught; it is preeminently and finally the express of the spirits of great (souls),” John Ruskin

“My part is essential to God’s plan for salvation,” the Course in Miracles says. Sadness is the sign that I would play another part instead of the one assigned me by spirit, and thus fail to show the world how great the happiness is that It wills for me, and everyone and everything else, and therefore.

The ego’s part is to prove happiness, peace and forgiveness are not universal and the truth for everyone and everything, and that spirit is wrong. Sadness demonstrates ego has won; happiness, that it has lost. By denying humanity the fruits of our happiness, we deny those fruits to ourselves. If I am sad, my part is unfulfilled, and all the world is deprived of joy along with me. Being sad is holding onto a grievance, believing I’m an ego and amounts to telling spirit it is wrong and the ego, right.

The Course says we are never sad for the reasons we think, that those are the ego’s ‘reasons,’ and that sadness never comes from circumstances beyond me – whether in my body or another’s – but from my mind’s decision to attack instead of forgive, to follow the ego instead of spirit. That is why salvation, happiness, peace and forgiveness are simple, there is only one problem and one solution, to choose spirit instead of ego.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Thought of Happiness

In the US, low prices for natural gas scuttle or delay many wind farms and solar installations – Sierra Club

The International Energy Agency announces that the world hit ‘peak oil’ in 2006, with production from current fields expected to drop sharply in the coming decades – Sierra Club

“Art distills sensation and embodies it with enhanced meaning in memorable form,” Jacques Barzum

“We will not let ourselves be sad today. For if we do, we fail to take the part that is essential to God’s plan,” Course in Miracles. This does not mean you and I have to put on a happy face, nor that we need to stop ourselves from feeling sad. It means that when we do feel sad, which is inevitable, we need to know that it comes from the mind’s though of sadness, born of having chosen ego over spirit.

Then, knowing this, ask spirit for help changing our minds so that we may take our part in spirit’s plan for salvation, for awakening ourselves and others from the ego’s nightmare to spirit’s happy dream and saving Its children from pain and suffering. Spirit’s appeal to us, the still small voice, is constant.

Our decision to be sad is a decision to hold ourselves, humanity and the world in the nightmare, apart from salvation and in hell. We need not smile all day. Rather, we are to be with what is, but be mindful. From our awareness that we are not happy arises the motivation to choose again, to see things differently and to ask the thought of happiness in our minds for help.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011











South Korea is building a 500 turbine 2,500 megawatt offshore wind farm, more than twice the size of China’s 1,000 megawatt Bohai Bay farm. The USA’s Cape Wind project is 300 megawatts – Sierra Club

Art has no enemy but ignorance – old English proverb

“My part is essential to God’s plan for salvation” - Course in Miracles. ‘Salvation’, ‘forgiveness’ and ‘miracle’ all refer to the same phenomena - the process of awakening from the ego’s nightmare, to our reality as spirit. This awakening or ‘at-one-ment’ as the Course calls it, is God’s plan.

Your part and my part are essential because the instant, the holy instant, I let my mind be healed of the belief in separation – the acceptance of the atonement for myself, which is my sole responsibility, my only function here - all humanity and the entire world is healed, since we are all one.

“Salvation must reverse the mad belief in separate thoughts and separate bodies, which lead separate lives and go their separate ways.” Salvation is the undoing of the entire ego thought system, and as such is very threatening to us as individual egos in the ego’s nightmare because we would disappear. But the promise of salvation is not our immediate destruction, but a shift from the ego’s nightmare to spirit’s happy dream.

Ken Wapnick says, “Despite their differences in form, all thoughts and bodies share one salient characteristic: they are equally illusory.” By seeing our illusory relationships for what they are and recognizing their fundamental sameness, we take the first steps toward awakening from the nightmare to the happy dream.

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Ark of Peace is Entered Two by Two

35 pilot whales beach themselves and die on an island off Donegal, Ireland – Sierra Club

Many beached dolphins turn out to be deaf – Sierra Club

“No man can think clearly when his fists are clenched,” George Jean Nathan

You and I cannot awaken from the ego’s nightmare world unless we bring everyone with us, without exception – Liberals, murderers, tea partyers, rapists, Jews, gays, terrorists and Muslims, included. Spirit’s gifts fall on the fallow soil of neediness until you and I recognize there is but one need we all share – to awaken from the ego’s nightmare of individuality and specialness, to our shared reality as spirit, and contribute our best to a world that works for everyone and everything.

Some of us are more aware of this responsibility and interdependence than others. So the one who is momentarily aware, right-minded and sane must give of this ability to the other who is momentarily unaware, wrong-minded and insane, who is stuck in the ego’s illusion and has a greater need at the moment. Whoever is saner at the time the threat is perceived should remember how his personal salvation and awakening is dependent on the other’s salvation and awakening. The Ark of Peace is entered two by two.

The Course in Miracles says, “Miracles are healing because they supply a lack: they are performed by those who temporarily have more for those who temporarily have less.” I learn that I have ‘more,’ reflecting the natural abundance of our shared reality as spirit, by giving to those who believe they have ‘less.’ By doing this, my giving enables me to receive what I already had, but had not recognized. I give the all-inclusive blessing which is my one and only function in the ego’s nightmare world, when I realize that having, being, giving and receiving are the same.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Exclude No One or Nothing

For the third time, the EPA puts off strengthening standards for ground level ozone – Sierra Club

There’s not enough ozone in the upper atmosphere, so whales in the Gulf of California are getting sunburned – Sierra Club

“No thing is so commonplace as to wish to be remarkable,” Oliver Wendell Holmes

The challenge as I awake each morning is to learn to exclude no one and nothing from my perception as a spiritual being first, dreaming I am an individual, flesh and blood ego. The choice is clear, but I must clearly see it with a vigilance and diligence that equals my determination to experience my oneness with spirit.

God’s gift of love is there for our receiving. Will we extend it to others in blessing, or withhold it, thereby cursing us both? That’s the question to be answered always, in all situations with all people. Only we have the power to determine our fate and the gift we shall give and receive – love or fear. Because we are all the same, all one and what ‘happens’ to me, happens to you, we can’t awaken from the nightmare unless we bring everyone and everything with us – snakes, spiders, Republicans and earthquakes.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Lucid Dreaming

Pregnant women who use cell phones are more likely to have disobedient children – Sierra Club

Children who live close to freeways are twice as likely to be autistic – Sierra Club

“Well done is better than well said,” Ben Franklin

“We continually seek for what will make us complete,” Ken Wapnick says. And live lives of constant bitterness because we believe we must bargain for what we need and protect what we think is ours. No matter the various forms this needy bitterness and bargaining take, Ken says, they all “boil down to one single error, our having chosen the wrong guide: the teacher of lack, scarcity and specialness, instead of the teacher of abundance, wholeness and love.”

“Beware the temptation to perceive yourself unfairly treated,” it’s a sure sign you’re with ego, not spirit. Always willing to strike a bargain, the ego cannot understand that to be like another means no bargains are possible, because there is only one’s Self, the rest is a dream made up by the ego to keep us from being aware of our reality as one Self. Thus, giving and receiving are the same, because, despite the seeming differences in the ego’s dream of scarcity, we are the same.

But it is possible to have a lucid dream – to be in the dream, know you’re dreaming and have a different dream, a happy dream. As a lucid dreamer, I know that each person I meet today, offers another chance to realize my reality as one Self in spirit and to give and receive the peace of God. On the other hand, each encounter also offers the chance to reinforce the ego’s thought system of separation, differentiation, and attack. The choice is mine, whether to dream the lucid dream of spirit or the nightmare of the ego.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Time for a Progressive Third Party

In an editorial in the Miami Herald yesterday, Charles Ornstein, senior reporter at ProPublica, a non-profit investigative new organization and president of the Association of Health Care Journalists, and Hagit Limor, president of the Society of Professional Journalists, say the Obama Administration has not made good on its promises of openness and government transparency.

“Democrats criticized the Bush administration for not making decisions based on the best science. But the Obama administration now muzzles scientist and experts within federal agencies. Consider these few examples:

 After last year’s oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, scientists and environmental groups accused the administration of hiding or underreporting the extent of the spill and its impact on the environment. Federal officials frequently deferred to BP in providing data on issues from cleanup workers’ health problems to oil-spill flow estimates. The government also placed restrictions on airspace for weeks, keeping media photographers from seeing the scope of the spill.
 The Food and Drug Administration placed an unusual restriction on reporters when announcing changes to its medical device approval process this year. In exchange for providing the information to the media ahead of time, reporters were told they could not seek insights from outside experts before the formal announcement. This ensured the first version of the story contained onl the FDA’s official position.
 In more than a third of requests made for public records last year, the administration failed to provide any information at all, the Associated Press reported. Despite an increase in requests, the Obama administration is releasing fewer records under the Freedom of Information Act than the Bush administration did.

The Obama administration puts reams of data online. Its useful, but it’s only the government posting what it wants to, when it wants to, on sites most citizens would never think to visit. Meanwhile, reporters’ questions often go unanswered. “We can’t see how that could promote public understanding of government, science and health policy.”

Here is yet another in an ever growing list of Obama administration disappointments. It is past time for a progressive third party. Most third parties in the last fifty years, have been on the right. If we really believe that, “transparency promotes accountability and provides information for citizens about what their government is doing,” as Obama himself said when he took office, then perhaps it’s time, way past time, that we stopped playing the two party game in a socio-political system rigged for two parties, and find a way to change the system so a progressive third party has a chance.

[Written with only a little anger, disappointment and sorrow from a mostly centered space, with spirit.]

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Smeness Behind Seeming Differences

The hormone-disrupting chemical BPA is found on half of all cash register receipts and nearly all dollar bills – Sierra Club

Doubling the level of BPA in women’s blood, researchers find, halves the percentage of eggs that fertilize normally in vitro – Sierra Club

The trouble with our times is the future is not what it used to be – Paul Valery

Yet when we give a blessing to another instead of demanding one, apparent differences are transformed into the single thought of at-one-ment – atonement, the realization that we are all one, one thought of our reality as spirit. Just as there is only one God, so there is only one child of God, all of us combined. Since our minds are joined in this way, we can learn to understand that giving and receiving are one, ‘cause we only give to ourselves of what we already have, the limitless grace, joy, peace and love of our spiritual parent.

Doing this, shifts our frame of reference from making differences real to using our perception of differences to learn that we are all the same, one in our reality as spirit, all needing to learn salvation’s simple lesson: What is the same can not be different, and what is one can not have separate parts. Having, being, giving and receiving are the same since the love we have is the love we are. This is the reality of the non-dualistic world of being, our true identity as spirit, in contrast to the ego’s dualistic world of existence in which what we have, another lacks.

It also explains why all the recent research shows that when we’re feeling down and depressed, the most healing thing we can do is to help another. Such kindness reflects a shift from seeing others as different, to seeing them as essentially the same as ourselves. We remain alike on the level of mind as spirit, everyday experience to the contrary, because we all share the same dynamic interplay of wrong mind, right mind, and what chooses between them, the decision maker. To forgive one person fully, means we have forgiven all – even the ones that are aware of BPAs effects and are not only making, using, and defending it anyway, but profiting from it.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The Peace that Passeth Understanding

According to The New York Times, last year General Electric (GE) made over $14.2 billion in profit, but paid NO federal tax.1 None.
In fact, thanks to the millions GE spent lobbying Congress, we American taxpayers actually owed GE $3.2 billion in tax credits.2
Now GE is slashing health benefits and retirement benefits for new employees among non-union workers and is expected to push unions to accept similar cutbacks3, while its CEO, Jeff Immelt, gets a 100% pay raise.4
What's worse? Immelt now sits as chair of the President's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness (Jobs Council), representing corporate America to the President on matters like job creation and corporate taxation. That's a slap in the face to every hardworking, tax-paying American—especially GE employees. ------ from MoveOn
Hypocricy: a feigning to be what one is not or to believe what one does not; especially : the false assumption of an appearance of virtue or religion
Synonyms: cant, dissembling, dissimulation, insincerity, piousness
Antonyms: genuineness, sincereness, sincerity
What’s the best way to deal with events like those at GE and other large organizations and the hypocrisy of the Obama Administration - go up to the screen to fix the focus or go up to the projection booth? Going up to the ‘projection booth,’ it is possible to realize that the kingdom has come, and spirit’s will is being done in earth, as it is in heaven, despite appearances to the contrary. I recently read an insight that suggested Jesus did not still the storm, but rather invited those around him into his peace, the peace that passeth understanding, the peace that can not be disrupted or denied by worldly conditions and appearances. Accepting himself as living within divine law, the storm was not a real force to Jesus, peace was.
We can experience the same peace Jesus did. It is ever present, judges not and wants to be shared. We have to work with ourselves to know that hypocrisy, inhumane corporations that seek to profit from human pain and sorrow are not the dominant force, peace is. No matter what, that peace is always available to us. By believing in this peace more than in fear, lack and pain, we are accessing it, and in this way have dominion over the tempest and other noises in and around us.
All the greatest avatars have counseled, thus, as Jesus counseled: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you.” “Not as the world giveth….” the peace that passeth understanding, the peace I’m allowing myself to feel even in the midst of anguish and fear, anger and hypocrisy.