This post can also be viewed along with other marvelous content at Nineteen Months!
“O SON OF SPIRIT! Noble have I created thee, yet thou hast abased thyself. Rise then unto that for which thou wast created.”
As I interact with my human family in this very fascinating world, I am faced with the dilemma that the above quote seems to encapsulate perfectly…that we are all created noble, but have to learn to arise from the abasement that we’ve gotten ourselves into. That abasement comes in all forms from abuse to oppression to negligence and all kinds of hurtful experiences that we may put ourselves and each other through.
So the burning question stands: How do we arise out of this lost sense of nobility? What behaviors, systems and practices are we collectively consenting to or engaging in that keep us from our noble destiny? What are our associations with even the word “noble”? How many names have we called ourselves and each other; how many judgements (more…)
So, here we are…A year after this space was carved out for you, I and anyone else who dared to explore the world of the unknown…
Where “What you don’t know that you don’t know” reigns firmly and lovingly. I’ll say for my part that this year has been gorgeous in so many ways, and has also provided serious signs of room for growth. Gorgeous because there was a start, and gorgeous because there really have been some good conversations that at least I was able to have with some of you who I might not have otherwise. I got to hear some views that were different from my own. I got to interview some really fun folks on camera and prepare for more opportunities to engage in similar dialogue with others…Challenging because at the end of the day there are very few things that we can presume to say with too much confidence that we “know”…and not everyone is ready to accept that…
I hope this year brings more. I hope to get to know some folks who visit better as we interact in this strangely intimate yet distant and cold space…
So I ask this of you…what would you want to hear more about? What themes and subjects would you like to see more of here? Anything that we should go deeper into?
I am looking to this New Year dawning to bring forth beautiful fruit, and I pray to keep my sights on my intention and purpose. I thank you for joining me on that path…
I’m normally reluctant to approach a loaded topic that easily becomes divisive, but I do want to open this space up to explore on it…
I will say up front that no conversation on race(among MANY other topics) is complete, and would be poorly served to be concluded with shallow and superficial treatments on what the deeper roots and causes are of the funny part of our collective experience that we call race.
Here’s a small bit from a conversation I had with a friend, where he asked me a pointed question about my experience with race:
Post originally published at Nineteen Months
e·go (g, gn. pl. e·go)
1. The self, especially as distinct from the world and other selves
2. In psychoanalysis, the division of the psyche that is conscious, most immediately controls thought and behavior, and is most in touch with external reality
3 a. An exaggerated sense of self-importance; conceit
b. Appropriate pride in oneself; self-esteem
[New Latin, from Latin, I; see eg in Indo-European roots. Sense 2, translation of German Ich, a special use of ich, I, as a psychoanalytic term.]
The individual units that make up society, each one of us, play a concrete role in how our social reality is shaped. If we buy organic, even the Wal-Marts of the world take notice and change or add to what they stock up on. If we respond to large banks’ taking advantage of people through exorbitant charges by moving your business to local banks and credit unions, the Bank of Americas of the world will trip over themselves to change some long-standing policies. In so many areas of social reality, each individual’s decision makes a difference, and the differences that I’ve thus far described are only economic. Companies like Google have designed a different kind of workplace environment from many companies of their size to improve the creative atmosphere for those doing the innovating, rather than stuffing their employees into bland cell-like cubicles. All this demonstrated to me the power of the individual to shape reality.
The other side of this reality for the individual, though, is what I’ve heard described as “unfettered individualism”, which I understand to be closely related to ideas like “survival of the fittest” and “may the best man win”…a mindset that sees “my driveway”, “my yard”, “my job”, “my space” and the like. In short, ways that we’ve managed to teach ourselves and each other in this country to think of ourselves as …Read the entire post here
“When one is released from the prison of self, that is indeed freedom, for that is the greater prison. When this release takes place, then one cannot be outwardly imprisoned.”
An element of life that manages to come up countless times in conversations I have is the things on which we place value. Some things are measurable like televisions, video game consoles, household income and the like. Then come the things that are much harder to measure like service, kindness, intelligence, spirit, security love and quality time. Some of these things can be essential to one’s feelings about quality of life; others can feel essential to aspiring to higher standards of behavior and living. I feel that each individual must engage in a meaningful and thorough introspective search in order to identify the needs one has that can determine where value lies.
There are some whose feelings regarding security lie at the base of what they value, and many of the things they feel joy from, connection to, and attraction to have everything to do with how much security comes with the relationships they form and how those relationships (more…)
Here’s a post that can also be found at Nineteen Months, where I write occasionally:
The concept of all people on Earth being part of one human family was in my consciousness in my upbringing, but captured my focused attention during my early young adult years. What a curious, yet familiar, notion! How is that possible when we as humans also seem to find any reason imaginable to focus on the differences between us?
So, with this fresh focus and mission to discover all that there was to learn about this “oneness”, I turned to my family for examples of how I might conceptualize elements of this idea as well as gain some concrete examples to draw upon later. All of my idealized and nostalgic notions of family and community scrolled along the hopeful marquee in my mind, making me sigh with joy at the beauty of it all…but my dear friend, Reality, needed a word with me… (more…)
I’ve gone into detail in previous posts about individuals and communities, but have yet to devote much attention to the third participant in society: the institutions. What qualifies as an institution generates a vast and weighty list, including local, national and international organizations; media organizations; governments and their agencies; and the institution of marriage. This spectrum of institutions shares many identifying features, but the one I wish to reflect on is structure.
All institutions have a structure in order to effectively administer to its objectives. What shape that structure takes has everything to do with the approach taken in building it. Many structures are chosen from among the existing models, based on the desired outcomes of that institution.
What I feel must be considered, though, is whether the models currently in existence can effectively administer to the needs of a changing age that requires flexibility and adaptation to meet the exigencies of our time. For instance, in the discourse on politics, there is frequently being voiced a need to think beyond the two-party (Republican vs. Democrat) system, and rethink how we might find a less divisive method of electing officials to serve our country in an official capacity.
This clip from a show called “Crossfire”, which tended to deal with the varied positions in US political matters in an adversarial way, clearly demonstrates to me the power of this rising voice in the discourse to rethink this combative approach to political structures in place: