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THE ABSENCE OF CHRISTMAS
By Rev. David Strickler
Crisp and cold ‘twas the evening of the traditional tour of surrounding neighborhoods Christmas light display. I walked outside to meet Goldfern who was graciously piloting the vehicle and chauffeuring all embarking on our seasonal exploration of lighting designs. It really makes for an evening to see the creativity of those who celebrate the Christmas season here in the Southwest where there is no snow with temperatures to remind one of their snowy origins from back east in northern Ohio, at least in my particular history. Without the least warning, an absence had emerged within the horizontal plane.
Horizontal events are activities of response that occur in this 3 dimensional world, what used to be named the mundane world as opposed to the coexisting least recognized vertical plane of consciousness which has at its essence causal properties of Soul, Spirit or Higher functions of beingness within consciousness. Horizontal events as such are not Spiritual events, but are more the shadows that are formed by the physical senses that are a more or less accurate of a response and/or reaction toward the presence of the vertical nature (causal) of consciousness initiated by its realm of Spirit. This Causal is not to be confused with the phenomena of cause and effect within the mundane physical world.
The Solar plexus chakra, which in the human nervous system is reflected in the region known as the abdominal brain or as some prefer to call it, the living instinctual mind, is where ‘gut reactions’ seem to swallow the attention that our heads are able to focus and thereby blot out any reasoning or higher thought functions of the brain temporarily. This is the arena within that part of the function of our personality and human ego uses to assume protective custody of our physical bodies by it remarkable power of attention limitation. This is a rough description of the arena of Horizontal consciousness. In some circles we see this area of consciousness well exposed by fixations of sexual activity, as an example, in politics where political commentary seems to predominate at times in primarily dialog about genital issues: looks, sexual preference, fidelity and the rest of the useless rot of diatribe by shallow people.
It is a luxury for me, to have someone drive, since I can’t drive for long periods of time due to the limitations created by the ongoing presence of visual and auditory disturbance from my stroke. I relish being able to sit in the car, converse with friends, laugh and without failure always move inward into a process of contemplation which ignites my level of discernment to my surrounding environment for receptivity and analysis. My ongoing summation of this year’s contemplative perusal always shows in the ghost of Christmas present and this year is by no means an exception, other than I am going to share a part of it with you this holiday, wherein in most years I do not.
Absence is the closest word to describe this season of articulation emerging from the horizontal plane of human consciousness, barren and void of some kind of indescribable quality usually present within human consciousness as it expresses itself on the physical plane. To put it simply, something is missing and it is being made so blaringly evident by the paradoxical description of the overwhelming ‘presence’ and lack; absence. One fair way to describe this absence is in using the Platonic cave as a model to lend it substance for the possibility of understanding. The unenlightened horizontal person’s mind is locked in the cave of Plato, watching the shadows being cast on the walls of the cave and mistaking the shadows for reality instead of a perception which points toward that which casts the shadows.
But here I must diverge in order to show events that promulgate this adherence to creating mass chaos in order to give you some means to apprehend what this absence is or is not and that brings us to 83-161 A.D. of Ptolemaic theory and Claudius Ptolemy’s intentional or unintentional hoax. Ptolemy got caught in those perceptions and mistook them for reality and used linear mathematics and flawed approach with statistical analysis to convince himself and others as to prove that the Sun revolved around the earth. This demonstration of the incompetence of the statistical method employed for mapping observations of the orbits, by Ptolemy and later Copernicus is still showing up redressed as incomplete, simplistic modern global warming theories and you can tell that I derive my view by those scientists in the tens of thousands of dissenting against the anthropogenic Co2 theory and that consensus is not science.
The Oregon Petition is one such gathering of dissent; Signed by more than 19,000 professional persons including 2,660 physicists, geophysicists, climatologists, meteorologists, oceanographers and environmental scientists, and 5,017 scientists from other disciplines, includes, inter alia, the statement; “Not only has the global warming hypothesis failed the experimental test; it is theoretically flawed as well”. The Peer Reviewed research paper provided in the next link is entitled: Environmental Effects of Increased Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide This is a “review of the research literature concerning the environmental consequences of increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide leads to the conclusion that increases during the 20th Century have produced no deleterious effects upon global weather, climate, or temperature. Increased carbon dioxide has, however, markedly increased plant growth rates. Predictions of harmful climatic effects due to future increases in minor greenhouse gases like CO2 are in error and do not conform to current experimental knowledge.” (re: http://www.oism.org/pproject/ ). Here is a video presentation of: Dr. Noah Robinson, Ph.D. Chemistry, California Institute of Technology, Professor, Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine on The Global Warming Myth.
In the words of Georg W. Kreutzberg, the former Director of the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Martinsried, Germany, “Preventing scientific misconduct is the responsibility of all scientists.” This admonition should be branded onto Economic Speculative Theorists by Economic Scientists as well. Complex systems described by a linear mathematics in a non-linear universe usually retain the vesture of my skeptical inquiries and include a caveat that science is not peer review (Albert Einstein being a case in point, re: Physical Review, 1936), alongside the caution that science is not ‘statistics’.
“Mother Nature simply operates at a level of complexity that is, at this point, beyond the mastery of mere mortals (such as scientists) and the tools available to us. As my high-school physics teacher admonished us in those we-shall-conquer-the-world-with-a-slide-rule days, “Begin all of your scientific pronouncements with ‘At our present level of ignorance, we think we know . . .’ Good advice for the IPCC, and all of us.” ~ John R Christy is Professor and Director of the Earth System Science Center at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, US. He has contributed to all four major IPCC assessments, including acting as a Lead Author in 2001 and a Contributing Author in 2007.
The aroma of human ignorance in history as it repeats itself through the gambling institutions and betting matrices used by current Hedge Funds and Private Equity Firms to affirm the existence of almost anything – as long as the Black-Scholes Derivative formula for which Robert Merton and Myron C. Scholes won the Nobel Prize for economics, in 1997, confirms any form of phantasmagoric financial manifestation that could produce cash from large scale ‘betting’. This ‘Las Vegas Casino Style’ appears to have emerged from the work of Robert Merton, PH.D. In 1973 Merton published a paper, “The Theory of Rational Options Pricing,” in the Bell Journal of Economics and Management can adroitly snatch any cash flow and produce double digit short term yields. Has science, as in other fields, succumbed to ‘newspeak’ by allowing themselves to be funded by nothing more than modern day bookies disguised as investment gamblers called Hedge Funds and Private Equity firms?
It would be amiss to not mention prior individuals which consummately cultivated the current field of mathematical finance wherein a interwoven dance of gaming theory, information theory and statistical probability theory (think—Ptolemy, Copernicus, anthropogenic Co2 is the sole cause of global warming) with the help of such earlier bastions of human dialog as Bertrand Russell, Norbert Wiener, and John von Neumann and other such applied lunacy being allowed to damage and terrorize the lives of the citizens of this nation as well as the health of our great nation and the world as is seen in the well engineered subprime loan crisis. My bet is the the CDP (carbon disclosure project) is the great Hedge Fund/Private Equity Firm hiring quantz to create ‘virtual machinery’ and ‘virtual jobs’ to foster agreement reality through a coordinating secretariat for institutional investors with a combined $41 trillion of assets under management. Therein is your clue for the direct interwoven dance of gaming theory, information theory and statistical probability theory. The amount of assets under management will cause affirmation some form of certainty toward anthropogenic Co2 as being the sole cause of global warming, never mind the science. Absence of sanity. My bet is that 41 Trillion dollars controls what type of policy is gambled on and engineered into public consent-whether or not it is true.
Please pay very close attention to my next statement: not all Hedge Funds or Private Equity Firms nor the people who work or own them are Economic Terrorists or are corrupt; what I am pointing toward is the existence within this Republic of corrupt individuals from all walks of life in such area as Religious, Political or Business who don’t give a second thought creating damage through unscrupulous profiteering and the expropriation of the citizens of this great nation. That being stated, I find it hard to accept Alan Greenspan’s denial that he couldn’t see the subprime loan debacle coming, when the fact of the matter that any self respecting economist functioning on the evidence of economic history (such as Dr. Michael Hudson) instead of Wall Street supported ‘Walt Disney-ish’ Speculative Theory of Economics as taught by the good-old-boys unit at the University of Chicago school of Economic (non) thought. By the way, where was any evidence of oversight and participation with insight toward regulatory effort from any responsible politician’s years before this Highly Visible collapse occurred?
‘The notion that the economy could regulate itself Hamilton called a ‘wild speculative paradox.”— The Cycles of American History, Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., Houghton Mifflin Company, 1986, p. 220-221.
It is revealing to hear such lunacy as the ‘market can regulate itself’ when according to economists who use the evidence prevailing in economic history know that to be false. It appears as though flights of fancy are still the functional norm and explication from some of the mouths of politicians, could this be a political form of Oxycotin? In my opinion and view, the subprime loan debacle and the philosophical cancer it represents spreading world wide is a financially engineered act of economic terrorism by bad apples whose behavior is predictable when they get support of their fantasy in being unregulated. These videos: Hedge Funds – Paul Solman, Voice of America on Hedge Funds and Adam Hewison on SEC Rule Change should give you the basic operational understanding of how Hedge Funds and Private Equity Firms work in the market place. I would also recommend reading Bill Fleckenstein’s Contrarian Chronicles.
This brings me to the great absence of sanity in our current human experience largely in part, in my view, due to the absence of genuine connectivity to human reality between people and the spiritual principles that are removed from a blocked view when such connectivity is brought into the realm of human action. Truth is not subjective—human beings may be subjective in their perception and cognition of a truth. Truth is absolute and human subjectivity is absolutely prone to misperception.
Human connectivity is coming at odds (no pun intended) with mathematical matrices designed to quantify all human activity and interaction as a monetary value. No matter how trite this flawed ideology is it remains a force to be reckoned with as a splinter or a muscle spasm making its presence known in the form of intense pain to justify the monetary goals of whatever individual or form of corporatism and institution has as its objective.
The absence of sanity is the presence I spoke of in the opening of my commentary I see in part is making itself known in the world of our human experience and conditions. Our senses as human beings recognize this absence somewhat like a huge wall blocking the source of light that creates the shadows on the Platonic cave wall of our senses.
From a Spiritual standpoint there is now shining a light from the vertical column of our consciousness coming directly from its source and this light is so brilliant that it cannot be seen with our ordinary senses, just as the universal principle of gravity cannot be “seen” directly by the senses. This spiritual light is so bright it renders any landscape within the human internal experience absent of any shadows or images and in the unenlightened individual the senses will create an affect (shadow) to the best of its ability; the summation of an ongoing growing sensation of something missing, something absent, something very wrong. What is wrong is the absence of true human encounter, touch, and dialogue in a one on one physical experience being replaced instead by synthetic forms of virtual reality and communication.
The irony is that the same technology being subjected to human perversion under the guise of “innovation”, “connectivity” and the likes of “social networks” can also, if properly used, give us some greater range of freedom, speed, and expedite concerns thus bringing people together to the ever present underlying realization that the world is okay, but there are some human beings who are down right criminal in their gluttony for gain no matter what that gain may be: power, money, and control to name a few.
Let me cite a few examples of factual human stories and experiences that have taken notice of the absence of sanity in human connectivity in this world. There are many to cite, but I will only give a few that have truly made this a rekindling of Christmas in my world view.
I am deeply moved by the courage displayed by a former KBR-Halliburton employee Jamie Leigh Jones for her appearance and testimony to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary about her heinous experiences while employed by an American Corporation overseas in Iraq. Her testimony was held on Wednesday, December 19, 2007, 10:15 AM at 2141 Rayburn House Office Building to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security Hearing on: Enforcement of Federal Criminal Law to Protect Americans Working for U.S. Contractors in Iraq.
In lieu of her experience she founded The Jamie Leigh Foundation which “is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping United States citizens and legal residents who are victims of sexual harassment, rape and sexual abuse while working abroad for federal contractors, corporations, or government entities.” She appears to have incredible support from her family as she continues to recover. Her organization is said to provide a safe area for other women to come forward who have suffered similar experiences. Here at Spiritual Climate Newsletter, our continued prayers for your healing as well as those whose unnamed voices you represent, for ongoing healing, recovery and resolution go out to you.
In a different area, where the ‘out of media coverage, out of mind behavior rationalization’ bears some comment is the continual recovery process of mass disaster of mega proportions-the leftover devastation of lives from hurricane Katrina, yet it appears strongly some politicians have directed their attention and energies to the ‘Big Dig’ going on in Washington D.C. with the massive Capitol Visitors Center project whose price tag is coming in, at least so far, at about $600 million dollars. There is quite enough room for some well deserved cynical irony about this and I would be amiss in my duty as a citizen of this great Republic not to point it out.
Getting back to Katrina, my opinion and comment is likely of little difference to actor Brad Pitt, but I would like to publicly give him a ‘hat’s off’ for his ongoing activism in the participation of helping to rebuild the lives of those who suffered incredible damage and trauma from Katrina. Watching Charlie Rose having A Conversation with Brad Pitt, I listened and watched intently as Brad Pitt shared his views and some of what his Make It Right foundation is doing and pursuing. My comment is that Brad Pitt as an actor first caught my attention in the movie: Meet Joe Black, where he played alongside the incredible Anthony Hopkins. Brad Pitt as a genuine human being first caught my attention in the above interview with Charlie Rose. Not to at all imply here that a comment from me would mean anything to Brad Pitt, but I do have to say Thank-you Brad Pitt for adding to my personal experience of Christmas in your bearing forth of genuine humanity and that expression of the true human spirit that resides with us all.
What does any or all of this have to do with Qabalah? Plenty, because true qabalists are scientists who work in being receptive to truth and the reality of invisible non physical principles that emanate from the not-thing-ness of consciousness which determine the fabric and nature of creation much like physical scientists who work to seek the understanding of the invisible universal principles such as gravity that determine how elliptical orbits come about in the mundane world. This is part of the great discovery astronomer Johannes Kepler accomplished to rid the world of the errors of Ptolemy and Copernicus’s use of statistical methodology for mapping observations of orbits; Kepler was and still is correct to this day; Qabalists seek to further understand the invisible footprint of the principles consciousness that is behind the veil of the visible material universe. These principles are the font through which the aperture of the material universe renders itself manifest. These principles can be used and applied in a physical universe during our temporal sojourn in a vehicle of flesh and bones.
It may be our gift of learning that saves us from ignorance if we can ever learn to imbue ourselves with due diligence, for it is from our flaws and limitations that we have the opportunity to discover gems of truth and pearls of Wisdom and Understanding and continue to grow even when we discard the use of the physical body that we use to explore the earth which is nothing more than the microcosmic finite physical universe and the macrocosmic non physical universe emanating from the soundless sound produced by a No-Thing-Ness which brought forth Light.
Christmas is only a pagan holiday to those whose discernment is lacking in the skill to see beyond the veil of the materialist view of the physical universe. Christmas is not a worship of the physical Sun, it is the reverence that is held to the Eternal Principle of the Life Power that is veiled behind the Sun that is worshiped, not the libelous slander presented by those who wish to justify whatever image they have created their god in their own image and likeness based on whatever feeling or venue of hermeneutics being used at their disposal.
Take heed from the great One, Jesus who admonished his disciples in the parable of the “Ten Maidens” and their lamps. Jesus (YHSVH) described “five who were foolish and five who were wise.” All ten had lamps, but the wise had plenty of oil to make their lamps do what they were created for, while the unwise ones had nearly-empty lamps that did almost nothing to overcome their personal darkness that they found within the world.
Matthew 25:1. Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. 2. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. 3. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: 4. But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. 6. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. 7. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. 8. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. 9. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. 10. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. 11. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. 12. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. 13. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh. ~ end quote ~
Let me share with you a small view through the eyes of this Qabalist. If one were to strip all systems from the human body except the physical nervous system and then invert it, upright it, one would then see the Unadorned Christmas Tree. Further, if one had eye to see this tree animated by the invisible non physical principle of the Life Power via the agency of consciousness, one would witness a spectacular twinkling of lights that would be similar to an adorned Christmas tree but would make the adorned tree pale by contrast to the Living Principle of Life manifesting through the human tree in terms of light and sound. Those who have eyes and ears take hint!
I wish to thank Goldfern for driving me around in the surrounding area to see some of the homes of the wonderful people who creatively decorated their ‘trees’, their home, their BETH (hebrew: bayt, house). I was blessed that night to share this gift of life with those friends who were able to attend as I was gifted to bear witness to the dance of the Life Power behind the physical house of those who live in this world and to see an incredible non physical light that Lights all Worlds.
May you find within your tree the living gift that is lit with the Light of Wisdom and Understanding,
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all
Rev. David Strickler, Ph.D.
THE PERSONAL IMPOTENCE OF ENGINEERED ADULT AUTISM December 7, 2007
By Christine Ford,
I had quite an enlightening experience while doing some real live in person Christmas shopping. I went out to the Mall in the hopes of lifting my spirits a little, as I was suffering from that recurring stigma of Holiday Blues that seems to increase for me as each season rolls around. Having done most of my Christmas shopping online this year, and having items conveniently shipped to Florida for my annual return to share this time with my children and grandchild, I hadn’t spent too much time in the stores with the holiday shoppers joyfully perusing purchases to be shared with loved ones! (Hehehe! Tongue in cheek, but a thought!) Noting that perhaps I was missing the “human element” this year, feeling somewhat like a virtual recluse, I thought it might behoove me, and my dour mood, to get right in there elbow to elbow, heart to heart with the crowds and hum Christmas Carols while pondering the ideal gifts for family and friends.
After experiencing three hours of rudeness from customers as well as merchants, after standing in lines to ask questions and getting no answers, after trying to find out the real prices of items, where they were located in the store, if there were any left, and being met with stupidity, insolence, ignorance and just plain hostility at every turn, I reluctantly sulked back to my computer cave to complete my online purchases in the sanctity, sanity and safety of my private little abode. What I experienced, while being depressing and somewhat alarming, was at the same time a real shocker and an eye opener! I find myself asking just exactly what “IT” was that I stepped into and attempted to become a part of!
I am still not at this point sure, but I can tell you all that the overwhelming sadness, the lack of joy, the hollowness and emptiness that cried out to me from the shallow eyes of those I encountered was startling and evoked a poignant feeling of grief and hopelessness within me that is difficult to express. On the other hand, the extreme pushiness, the feeling of “I’m the only one here, get out of my way or else”, the intolerance and non-communication of those bags of blood as they mindlessly swarmed in what appeared to be holding patterns in a massive airport was frightening! The herd moving blindly and totally oblivious of those around them through the labyrinth of aisles without a pause to look or ponder, like rats in a maze, literally running over anyone who dared to break the rhythm left me angry and frustrated, to the point that I had to just leave and sit in my car for fifteen minutes before I could even drive home. I felt as though I were walking through a mass of lifeless, physically animated corpses, whose minds were numb and whose hearts were dead.
There was no acknowledgement or recognition of human kindness, no exchanged glances or greetings, no “excuse me”, “I’m sorry”, or “pardon me” as they forced their way through narrow aisles of stacked items, plodding behind shopping carts moving towards the next item to be numbly placed within the cart, just another item crossed off the list. I was reminded of the Discovery series I have watched where the ants start marching in a stream and that forward momentum stops at nothing, but devours any that may pause or come into its path. It was almost as if these torrents of “people” were communicating somehow on an internal channel like the Borg in Star Trek, with one mass mind devoid of any individuality, driven only by the direction of the flow, carried forward by the get what I want syndrome of gratification. This leads me to ask what has changed, because though I know I struggle with this sensation every year, I have never felt such a slam dunk of sorrow, hopelessness and emptiness in my life.
In the past I’ve written my pre-holiday gloom off to various “osophies and syndromes”, such as the Scrooge syndrome, the old lady crabbiness complex, the Christmas is for children philosophy, the I’m too busy for this crap camp, and the ever faithful, but always true, when did Christmas become nothing more than a merchandising holiday rant. I have in the past, however, been able to somehow overcome and sublimate these feelings of emptiness and shallowness and find a glimmer of hope within the eyes and hearts of those around me. Perhaps it is the romantic part of me that did that, creating joy when it didn’t exist at all, an illusion to lighten the season for myself. Perhaps there is no change in the external circumstances; the crowds may be the same as always, the beauty and joy may be in the air, and I just don’t perceive it; perhaps the change has taken place in me. At this point I cannot determine where the change originates; within the masses, within my perception of them, or from within me. I am surmising that it is a combination of all three, but I have some thoughts as to why it may be happening!
Over the past couple months, I have had the pleasure and delight to hear stories from some of my “Elders”. I hope they don’t take deference to my calling them that, I mean it in the most respectful and reverent way. Though I won’t mention names, at our weekly meditation nights we are blessed with the presence of an incredible couple in their mid 70’s and one beautifully wise woman in her mid 80’s. They have relayed to us memories and experiences of their childhood and growing years that have become true eye openers to us as to the changes that have taken place within all areas of life: familial, societal, governmental, political, ethical, moral, religious, educational, technological… The list could go on and on. I have found that recently my mother, who is approaching her 85th birthday, has been strolling down memory lane with me in her conversations more often as well. From the tales of these experienced and intelligent, caring individuals, I have gathered a wealth of knowledge as to the comparison of the way PEOPLE interacted “then” and how they interact “now”. I have also come to the realization that the manner in which people communicate and hold each other in regard in our present society is dramatically different than it was in my childhood and younger years. Having come to a tentative conclusion as to the why of it, I’d like to share this with you for your consideration and pondering.
It seems to me that what we are experiencing today within all levels of society appears to be a gross depersonalization of humanity, a trend towards self-absorbed behavior that negates interpersonal relationships and makes a mockery of intimacy and true sharing of oneself with others. As this thought turned over in my mind, I quickly became aware of the similarity there was to this premise and the definition of autism which afflicts the children that I teach each day. Autism is a brain disorder that impairs social interaction and communication, causing restrictive, repetitive behavior. The New Latin word “autismus” (English translation autism) comes from the Greek word “autos” and is used to mean morbid self-admiration, referring to “autistic withdrawal of the patient to his fantasies, against which any influence from outside becomes an intolerable disturbance.” Sounds alarmingly like those zombies I experienced while shopping, complete with their inability to see beyond the limiting boundaries of their self defined focus of attention.
May I digress for a moment to be sure that those of you reading this understand that there is a gross difference between autism spectrum disorders, the autism the children I teach exhibit, and what I am suggesting that the masses have been induced into. My children have beautiful moments of feeling and interaction; times when you can reach right in and almost hear their thoughts. They communicate on their own level and in their own very unique ways, using phrases and events they relate to and are familiar and comfortable with to survive in a world they are completely overwhelmed by, not consciously a part of, but this is NOT the type of manufactured autism which I refer to as the stigma that is enveloping and silencing individuals in today’s world. I am merely using the etymology of the word “autism” to convey a point. Let me here refer you to a pdf document in which the use of the word autism brilliantly described the state of education within Economics: Editorial: Still Autistic Finance, by George M. Frankfurter.
In the 1940’s, Leo Kanner, coined the term “Refrigerator Mothers” as an explanation of autism. His premise proposed that cold, frigid, uncaring parents actually created autism a within child. In a 1949 paper, he suggested autism may be related to a “genuine lack of maternal warmth”, noted that fathers rarely stepped down to indulge in children’s play, and observed that children were exposed from “the beginning to parental coldness, obsessiveness, and a mechanical type of attention to material needs only…. They were left neatly in refrigerators that did not defrost. Their withdrawal seems to be an act of turning away from such a situation to seek comfort in solitude.”
Now I know for a fact that this theory is not true, for the parents of my children with autism are some of the most dynamic, communicative, loving individuals you would ever want to meet. Their daily, in fact hourly sacrifices and commitment to the well being of their kids is a whole article that I will write someday. Leo Kanner’s premise is unaccepted in today’s standards as a “cause” of autism but consider for a moment his premise when applied to the societal “parents” leading us in the political, governmental, educational, religious and technological arenas. The coldness, unwillingness to listen, uncaring decision making, demands of more time and more energy with no reward; couldn’t this be the syndrome which Leo Kanner, before his time and missing the mark a bit, may have been referencing in an almost prophetic manner? Have the parents to whom we have entrusted our spiritual, psychological, emotional, mental, physical and financial well being sold us down the river?
Have we slowly become a society of desensitized humanoids creating our sterile, unfeeling prison cells of separation while we exist only within the fantasy of our realms of purely perception? Are we increasingly becoming further isolated and withdrawn from human verbal exchange while being so addicted to technology and constant auditory and visual stimulation of mechanical devices such as television, video games and the like that we have no desire or use for the sound of the human voice, the touch of the human hand, the sharing of the warm gold of the human heart? The more this thought is mulled over in my mind, the more concerned I have become that perhaps there is no hope for the masses of humankind who choose the illusion of the Matrix over the realities of Truth. The Spirituality and beauty that was once the foundation of this sacred holy season has been denigrated and blasphemed by the engineered society, economy, religion and government; just as the U.S. Constitution written by our Founding Fathers is being slowly annihilated and ignored with glee by the same perpetrators. The community and family of the past has been reduced to dinners on the run and cell phone conferences, the joy and love shared at this beautiful season as well as year round has given way to a compressed, harried exchange of “Seasons Greetings” and Happy Holidays”, to the point where one feels politically incorrect and almost ashamed to shout a “MERRY CHRISTMAS!”
The sad reality of this has almost hammered me flat this holiday season as person after person, young and old, comment, “Does it seem like Christmas to you? I just can’t believe it’s really that time of year.” This common thread of thought expresses in a vague but concerned manner that there is just something missing, “things” just aren’t right this year. Yes, I agree 100%, something just isn’t right about the feel of the energy and the vibration this year. I do believe that it has to do with the attitudes and emotional states of the PEOPLE who are burdened by time crunches due to increased productivity, money tightness due to financial fiascos of lending institutions, dwindling personal exchanges due to modern technology advances, sadness of loss of young lives in a war that has commonly become referred to as the “Theater” by politicians and the isolation of feeling as if no one cares, no one can make a change, no one has any power, and no one has any voice.
Enter the age of engineered adult autism! Can you say PERSONAL IMPOTENCE any clearer than that? Is it any wonder that people retreat into their joyless shells and stumble around like lifeless marionettes animated only by the strings controlled by those who aspire to “lead” them, while chanting, “I gotta get it done and I only have an hour to do it in?” This is a state that we have gradually and slowly, in infinitesimal increments allowed ourselves to be lulled into, NOT because we are ignorant, but because we trusted those in power, be it in religion, economy, education or the government to put our best interests before any profit margins or private agendas and we forget to ask necessary check-point questions. Where within this dismal picture is human dignity, beauty of the soul, fire of agape, joy of personal exchange and the brilliant solitude of the darkest night of the year breaking into the dawn of the first light of Christmas morning, ablaze with promise and life?
This question I actually have an answer to. That human dignity, beauty, fire, joy and light resides deep within the hearts of each and every one of us. It is within you, and can be discovered, nurtured, fed and replenished only by you. The flame can also be smothered, drowned, hidden and cut off from becoming a blazing torch, but again, that can only be done by you, to you, if you allow the influences of the idea of personal impotence to be your mantra, if you allow ‘engineered adult autism’ to be your choice. The one thing that you cannot do, however, is totally extinguish that flame, for there will always be a tiny glimmer remaining, and that spark will eternally be your connection with the Divine, your Soul and Spirit.
The first light of the dawn of Christmas day is given freely to all, as is the indwelling spark of Genesis. Dr. Strickler points out the fact that it is not the physical sun but our spiritual consciousness represented behind the physical mask of the sun in any system of creation. May this holy season rekindle within you the strength and desire to fan that flame and to break away from the desolate autism of the personal impotence which has been imposed upon you.
May you Find the that Light that Brightly shines within
AND NOW A WORD FROM ‘ANDY ROONEY’. . .
By Roger Clark
Several months ago, I was asked if I would be interested in contributing occasional writings for Spiritual Climate. These could be on a subject(s) of my choosing to bring up the rear (so to speak) of the newsletter; being the oldest member of the group, made me think of Andy, though I do trim my eyebrows.
“T’is the Season to Be Jolly”
My Christmas season starts earlier than most. If I don’t have my tree and decorations up by Halloween, my grand kids think there is something wrong. This year I did, however, wait until the day after to decorate and light the tree, and the day after Thanksgiving to turn on the outside lights. Don’t want to offend anyone, you know.
And now, December 9, most of the shopping is done! Did the annual Mall trip a couple weeks ago, to get the “flavor” of the holiday season? (That’s Christmas to those of you who are not offended) Bought a few things, but the bulk of present purchasing was done at Amazon.com, and other shops while I checked out online sites naked from the comfort of my own home.
Though starting this article with another story, I felt inspired to share some thoughts and experiences brought to mind today, when trekking out for the annual Brother Bonding Shopping Spree. Though seemingly disjointed, they are examples of how this “senior” mind works. I keep reading how bad the economy is and how retailers are so worried about making up for lost annual sales. Today is a Wednesday and at 10:30 a.m. the only parking spaces in site of the stores were for handicapped. Lucky us! My brother was looking for Sponge Bob Chump Bucket Legos (say that 5 times fast) for his grandson and it took four of the hiking trail super stores to finally come up with one. Presumably they are lead free. While looking through Target, I saw an associate talking on his walkie- talkie to another employee. “Sorry, I can’t help you now,” he said. “I am with a “guest”. If we are no longer customers, but guests, then why do they make us pay?
Then it was time for lunch at Pannera Bread, his favorite spot. I ordered a sesame bagel with cream cheese and coffee dujour. “Do you want anything with that?” I was asked, “Just cream cheese, please.” The same question was asked and answered two more times before I realized I was supposed to say “plain cream cheese”. The look I received was not particularly forgiving, taking up valued noon time rush. The highlight of the day, however, helped brighten my otherwise cynical outlook. A young mother noticed my brother standing, waiting for a place for us to sit. She got up and walked the length of the room, and invited us to join her. She was shopping for her three daughters and sitting alone. Not only did we sit with her but had a delightful conversation, and not once did her cell phone ring.
That brings me to my cell phone outrage…. It seems that few today can tolerate being in their own company, whether shopping, driving, or having the daily walk or jog. Multi-tasking is great, but not when it puts others at risk. I’m sure you have all seen someone go through a light, changing red with cell phone in one hand, and a cigarette or coffee in the other. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. It made me think of an old game we used to play while riding on a trip: that of counting out of state license plates. Now, though, whoever counts the most cell phone using drivers, wins.
To end the tale of this day, we stopped at the local Walgreen store on the way home. Upon checking out, the cashier asked me,”Do you need batteries today?” Answer: No thank you, I am traveling under my own power.
“And The World Will Be As One”
My brother and I were brought up in a time when there were perhaps one of two blacks in our entire graduating high school class. Our father was somewhat bigoted, but didn’t single out African Americans; he often referred negatively to Italians, Portuguese, Hispanics and anyone else who wasn’t a purebred ‘WASP’. Each had their own distinct characteristics, but we could trace our ancestors to the Mayflower. You’re impressed now, right-<smiles> As the years wore on, thankfully things began to change in his attitude as well as the country’s, but then it had to for him, for he loved his family. In his later years he found out African Americans weren’t so bad, especially when one married his grand daughter. Nor were Portuguese, Hispanics or even gays. I debated going on with more background, but that is not necessary, nor what my meanderings are getting to.
‘Robert’ (name changed for privacy concerns) and ‘Joseph’ (my nephew, name changed for privacy concerns) have been partners for eight years. They met while roommates at college; Robert becoming an elementary school teacher, and Joseph, a high school music director, both of whom received Teacher of the Year Awards at their respective schools. For a number of years they wanted to adopt children, and towards that end they even moved to another town with a superior school system to the one they were in, anticipating an eventual adoption. After many tries and dollars, taken by no result promises, they finally became one of eight couples being interviewed by the state for the care of a seven year old Hispanic boy. ‘M’ was taken by the state along with his two siblings from their abusive parents, bouncing from orphanage to foster homes, for a number of years. Much to their delight they were the selected couple to provide a home for the boy, a home, unlike any other he had known or dreamt about. ‘M’ now has his own room, neighborhood friends and loving family. My brother and his wife, now have the grandchild they had longed for. This past year ‘M’ was legally adopted by his new “Dad” and “Poppy.”
My brother for many years was a stereotypical “Archie Bunker” and as a result Joseph kept his sexual identity a secret from them. After much prodding from other members of the family, he finally told them, realizing he was denying them and hurting himself with the stress.
This past summer, I received an invitation in the mail, inviting me to the civil union of Robert and Joseph, to be held at a church in Connecticut where they live followed by a reception at a local country club. And this is the reason I decided to tell this story.
A formal wedding could not have been more beautiful: a perfect day, lovely church decorated with an abundance of flowers, and choir. The church was nearly filled by the invited plus many friends, teachers and students who just wanted to be a witness and part of the event. Joseph and Robert came down the aisle dressed in formal tuxes followed by ‘M’ carrying the ring pillow, the four parents and ushers.
All of those in attendance agreed it was one of the most beautiful and happy occasions they had witnessed. Gay, straight, friends, neighbors, family, African Americans, Hispanic, Korean and probably some I missed joined as one, dining, dancing and singing for the remainder of the day.
And the most heartwarming part was my brother, leaning over to me and saying, “Why can’t the world be like this every day?”
What does all this have to do with the Spiritual Climate? Everything!
I wish all my friends on the staff of the Spiritual Climate Newsletter, along with family, friends and fellow travelers the very best of the holiday season and a brighter New Year. May all our lights shine brightly in the upcoming year.
May Light Be Extended Unto You
By Wendy Ford
It seems Thanksgiving never even happened. It seems to have been ignored. There wasn’t any build up to it leading to the anticipation as in years past. Personally, disappointment is a term never before associated nor experienced with Thanksgiving Day. The true highlight of Thanksgiving was that my husband was home and off the road for two whole weeks. That was a personal Thanksgiving that lasted for two weeks and was our cherished blessing. Normally the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving are filled with the anticipation and preparation for the day. This year there was something distinctly different about it but figuring out the whys may take some time.
Part of it must have to do with the fact that the Christmas displays have been in the stores since before Halloween. Finding Thanksgiving paper plates was a failure this year. A full two weeks before Thanksgiving there were none to be found in the local grocery as all the Christmas, Chanukah and New Years items were already on the displays and shelves. When a store clerk was asked where they might have the Thanksgiving items the reply came with a shake of her head, “I guess they just skipped Thanksgiving this year.” Plates with bunches of purple grapes on them were substituted with at least the theme of harvest. The search for napkins to match was quickly abandoned and instead a solid color from the birthday aisle was chosen. It just seemed Thanksgiving never even happened.
It’s starting to feel like Christmas has “already been”, too. One can’t pick up a magazine, look in a store window, open e-mails, or turn on the radio or TV without being assaulted by ads and sales.
Could be just my perception of time being so compressed right now but it just seems particularly this year the merchants have really been pushing and pushing very, very hard the sales earlier than usual. It seems paradoxical that at a time when many families are so stretched financially that they face the very real threat of home foreclosure the merchants seem to be more in your face this year than ever.
“Buy! Buy! Buy!” the ads flash, the signs proclaim and actors manically shout and pitch. It is the same every year: the perception that the more things that are given and the more money that is spent equate with how much you care or love someone. It just appears to be brighter, louder and more offensive this year.
This theme is not unique to Christmas. There was a program on the local NPR station on which a minister and a rabbi were speaking of the meaning of the two Holy Days seasons of Christmas and Chanukah. Evidently the concern about commercialization has been going on since the 1700’s.
Joy and Beauty and Love are all reflective in the spirit of Christmas and the emotions can, indeed be infective. There is also a flip side to all of this, for the Law of Polarity dictates there be a negative to balance the positive even at this time of year. For many, this time of year is very introspective and private, a time of inner searching and reflection.
Everyone seems to be frantically running hither in a dither. Evidently the idea is to search for the perfect gift for just about anyone they have ever come in contact with from loved ones to the door man to the letter carrier to the office cleaning staff to the vet to the baseball coach to the teacher to, well, you get the idea. Showing appreciation by writing a note is evidently unacceptable. Surely the work and service of others around you is only to be acknowledged on one very specific day of the year and there are even etiquette rules that govern this. Everyone is searching. What is everyone really searching for?
Could it be that at this time of year, when the darkest night of the year comes on December 21st that we are seeking to fill and soothe that aching void deep within us that is hurting in response to our separation from our connection with our Source?
Are we searching through all the frivolity, festivities, and frantic rushing about to fill that void and soothe the ache? Are we so influenced by the Sophistry based philosophy of consumerism that we have come to truly believe the busier we are and the more money we spend the happier we must be? Oh, and if we go to a midnight religious service on December 24th we will be spiritually medicated and soothed as well.
Could it be that those are the very activities that continue to foster the separation? If we were to instead quiet ourselves enough to turn our eyes, ears and attention inward could we experience the opposite effect? Might we be able to begin to bridge the gap between “us” and our Source? Yes. Dr. Strickler has taught us that Meditation is the key. True meditation is not contemplation or visualization or deep breathing or contemplating our navel while standing on one leg. We don’t have to “do” or “go” anywhere. True meditation is merely sitting alone in a quiet place for twenty minutes a day, allowing one’s mind to quiet enabling the participation in the greatest meditation of all: the Meditation of the Source.
The Meditation of the Source is why any thing and any one exists in the first place: we and everything in manifestation are being “thought” into existence. The present tense has been intentionally used because every moment of the “now” is the result of that meditation. Creation didn’t stop. It is an ongoing process that is the result of that Meditation. Should the Source cease meditating…..poof. No more Manifestation.
As the word meditation has been mistyped to “mediation” more than once in the writing of this article it has brought my attention to the two words. It is striking to realize that Meditation is a form of mediation. Also, it is merely one letter, the letter “T”, the Hebrew letter Tau, that makes the distinction between the two words. Key 21 in the Tarot is “The World”. Interesting: Mediation between Manifestation and the Source by participating in Its Meditation.
“Give! Give! Give!” flash, the signs proclaim and actors manically shout and pitch. The more we give the better must we feel, and the better we feel the more alive we are and the more we love. Right? Not necessarily.
In the Western world we are taught from childhood that it is better to give than to receive. What is left out is the part about that the giving needs to be genuine, and given from the heart out of Love. Most of us don’t know ourselves well enough to have a genuine connection with our own hearts in order to give out of Love.
Most of us have never been taught that unless we first come to know ourselves it is impossible to truly give to others.
Knowing ourselves is the hardest and most painful thing any of us will ever have to learn or discover, for to truly know ourselves is to be willing to know and accept every facet of our being: the good, the bad, and the ugly facets. Once we start that process of learning to accept every facet of ourselves we begin to truly love ourselves. Until we reach a point where we have at least SOME love of self the “giving to others” is merely an illusion we have concocted, a salve that soothes our own pain, an act that gives us the feeling of having filled our own emptiness and blinds us to the looking inward. Once again we if we look inward and with honesty we discover we are merely medicating ourselves with illusions and delusions.
"Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.." (John 8:12 ~ KJV) and notice it says I AM the LIGHT not ‘Light Bearer’. Through his life became manifest that Christ Consciousness was anchored and made available in earth plane.
There is something quite magical about the first light of Christmas Morning, a tradition of observance taught to me by Rev. Strickler. If you can be in a position to actually see that first flash from the sun as it comes up over the horizon or from behind the dip in the mountains or hills or just over top of the city buildings there is an indescribable momentary glimpse of and feeling of connectedness. Because we are limited by the concepts of time and space it seems to only last for that flash but it can be your connection and fuel, your lifeline, for the upcoming year. Your Soul knows that connection and for the physical vehicle to experience even the briefest of connections is the true gift of Christmas.
So this Christmas don’t forget to give something to yourself. Take that leap and dare to really look in the mirror and find out something about yourself. This is a personal gift you don’t have to share with anyone. Give yourself twenty minutes a day to sit and be quiet and to participate in the Meditation of the Source, your Source. Go outside and find that ‘First Light’ on Christmas Morning. This could be your greatest gift of all for it can sustain you through the coming year.
May the Lord of Life empower you to grab hold and use Its Will as It bestows Its many blessings upon you: the Courage to honestly look deep within yourself; the Compassion to accept yourself in all your complicated facets; Grace in the application of forgiveness with yourself for your faults and failings; the Patience to persevere in your quest to know yourself for it is a lifelong process; the ability to Laugh at yourself as you stumble and err for that is just a part of the human condition, imperfection. You don’t need to grovel and beg for all these are already yours. Just let the Light in.
Be Open to Discover that which is True and Genuine,