Monday, October 31, 2011

The Art Of Inclusivity

“I have no interest in participating in the traditional political process. It’s bureaucratic. It’s vertical. It’s exclusive. It’s ruled by money. It’s cumbersome. This is cumbersome too, what we’re doing here, but the principles that I’m pushing and that many people are pushing to uphold here are in direct opposition to the existing structure. This is a counterpoint. This is an acknowledgement of all those things that we hate, or that I hate, which are closed and exclusive. It is about defying status and power, certification and legitimacy, institutional validation to participate. This process has infected our consciousness as far as people being allowed [to participate] or even being given credibility. The wider society creates a situation where people are excluded, people feel like they’re not worth anything. They’re not accepted. The principles here are horizontal in terms of decision-making, transparency, openness, inclusiveness, accessibility. There are people doing sign language at the general assembly now. There are clusters of deaf people that come together and do sign language together. This is an example of the inclusive nature that we want to create here. And as far as redefining participation and the democratic process, my understanding of American history is that it was a bunch of white males in power, mostly. This is radically different. If you’re a homeless person, if you’re a street person, you can be here. There’s a radical inclusion that’s going on. And if it’s not that, then I’m not going to participate.”

- Jon Friesen,

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Navigating Noise

A thoughtful sentence shared to me by one of my friends:  "You have to learn to ignore the noise freedom makes to be free."

The journey continues...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Big Brother Censoring Populist Protests

"Forget copyright infringement, YouTube is now complying with removal orders from governments to stop populist rage going viral.

In a frightening example of how the state is tightening its grip around the free Internet, it has emerged that You Tube is complying with thousands of requests from governments to censor and remove videos that show protests and other examples of citizens simply asserting their rights, while also deleting search terms by government mandate."


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Denunciation And Disruption

From Christopher Ketcham:
The beauty in all this is that there is no mere demand, not a sliver of legislation the occupiers want passed or special interest they want satisfied—nothing by which to be hemmed in ideologically or politically. The habit in the mainstream media to date has been to bitch and moan that the protesters don’t know what they want, or won’t say what they want, won’t offer up the pre-masticated bullet-point list easily consumed by reporters suckled on press releases and toilet trained for TV. An ex-Marine named Brian Phillips, 25, who traveled to Zuccotti Park from Washington state, tells me what he wants. “We want to start a new way of living,” Phillips says. “We want to start a new society. We want to destroy a system that benefits only the 1 percenters. It’s not working for us. It’s putting us in poverty. We say: ‘No more making laws that benefit corporations or banks.’ ” 
The norm in the political economy of the United States is that the corporations and the banks run things and we all suck it up and smile. With the rise of the occupation, the disruption of this degraded normalcy of affairs is the message and the meaning. The message is that the future of American democracy is not in casting the meaningless vote in the two-party shell game, nor in lobbying over fine dinners, nor in writing letters to robots like Charlie Rangel, nor merely in Facebooking and Twittering one’s dissent. The future lies in people gathered in the streets in solidarity and making trouble.
This is only the beginning.

Entire essay:

Thursday, October 20, 2011


"The worst lies are the lies we tell ourselves.
We live in denial of what we do, even what we think.
We do this because we're afraid.
We fear we will not find love, and when we find it we fear we'll lose it.
We fear that if we do not have love we will be unhappy."

- Richard Bach

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Chris Hedges Interview


"A 'No' uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a 'Yes' merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble. "

- Mohandas Gandhi -

Not Moving

Monday, October 17, 2011

Becoming Alive

“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

- Howard Thurman

Daniel Pinchbeck On Revolution

"The path before us requires voluntary renunciation and voluntary simplicity to reduce our burden on the earth. Therefore, the old paradigm that sees accumulation of wealth and immediate material satisfaction as the goal needs to be rejected collectively. We are going to step into a new realization of our purpose -- of the meaning of human life, in itself. We are going to remember, and relearn, what every ancient civilization and traditional culture tells us: that our lives have a spiritual meaning, above all. Existence in this world is an initiatory process to prepare us for the transition to other conditions of being, other worlds or bardo realms beyond this one.

The duality of spirit and matter also needs to be overcome. Indigenous people do not recognize this dualism -- they do not imagine spirit to be above or outside of this realm, but within it. Instead of a sky religion, their spiritual practices are rooted in sensuous connectivity with the earth. In a sense, indigenous cultures are much more truly materialist than our society, as they see the essential value of the natural world as an expression of the Creator, and do not try to impose abstract systems on to it.

Our civilization has been ruled by a mindset that sees life as a means rather than an end. In the past, guilt and postponement were inscribed in a religious creed that put off redemption to some distant future. Recently, science replaced religion with a fundamentalist vision of technological progress, leading to a time when humans merge with silicon or create artificial intelligences that succeed us. This is also a delusion that keeps us alienated from the living present.

We don't know what it will be like to live in a society where life is realized as the ends in itself -- where we seek to benefit the collective by nurturing and supporting each individual. We can only anticipate that it will be wonderful to find out.

The consciousness movement has the sacred task of integrating our understanding of spirit and Psyche into the rapidly unfolding movement for planetary justice and social regeneration. This global movement is part of an initiatory process for humanity as a whole that will bring about a transformation of both the individual and collective ego-structure. The goal is not the destruction of the ego but the attainment of an ego-free state -- liberation from the tyrannical demands of the ego, which can never be satiated. Similarly, we don't want to see the smashing of current institutions, but their alchemical transmutation, so they support our human community and safeguard the resources of the natural world. Humanity, as a whole, is rapidly losing our appetite for violence and destruction. We are increasingly sick of the negative patterns of the past, and ready to overcome the inertia."

- Daniel Pinchbeck

Chris Hedges, "A Movement Too Big To Fail"

"The Occupy Wall Street movement, like all radical movements, has obliterated the narrow political parameters. It proposes something new. It will not make concessions with corrupt systems of corporate power. It holds fast to moral imperatives regardless of the cost. It confronts authority out of a sense of responsibility. It is not interested in formal positions of power. It is not seeking office. It is not trying to get people to vote. It has no resources. It can’t carry suitcases of money to congressional offices or run millions of dollars of advertisements. All it can do is ask us to use our bodies and voices, often at personal risk, to fight back. It has no other way of defying the corporate state. This rebellion creates a real community instead of a managed or virtual one. It affirms our dignity. It permits us to become free and independent human beings."

 Essay in its entirety:


“For years, I labored with the idea of reforming the existing institutions in the South, a little change here, a little change there. Now I feel quite differently. I think you’ve got to have a reconstruction of the entire system, a revolution of values.”

 - Martin Luther King Jr


Sunday, October 16, 2011


"The fool has a goal.
The gifted person of bliss has no aims."

- The Rambling Taoist

Lanterns On The Lake - "Keep On Trying"

A phenomenal music video. It really captures aging, loneliness, and community quite beautifully.


Inclusive Spirituality

"Recently as part of my deep studies of the Tarot I received a teaching that stated, everything is spiritual because everything is spirit. A very simple statement I know but one that at least for me even though I might mentally agree with it and understand it was not something I really lived on a daily basis. I didn’t BEHAVE as if I truly realized it. From this point of view there is nothing that is not spiritual, there is no action that is not spiritual, there simply cannot be. The result of the deep contemplation of this was a great expansion and a redefining of my spirituality to essentially include everything in my life. Now its not so much of a challenge to walk around and see trees, the sky, cute little kittens and lovely works of art as manifestations of spirit. But what about people you detest? What about the aspects of your personality you’ve struggled with the most? What about sexuality? What about destruction? What about your fears?

When spirituality is compartmentalized we create a concept out of it and then proceed to judge ourselves, other people and our experience based on that concept. However that concept is not real except in our minds and it creates separation which cuts us off from reality. Whatever our concept of spirituality is it is in some way problematic because its limited and spirit knows no such limits. Spirit is life itself, the ever flowing life energy of the entire cosmos of which we are a unique expression, just as we are now. Our personalities being a vehicle for the creative expression of Divine Will. We are the means by which the universe becomes aware of itself in an infinite number of forms and actions. Some of those forms are considered beautiful and some are considered horrible but ALL are spirit. There is no form or expression in existence which is not Divine."

- Colin's entire blog post:

Soy Protein Found In Virtually All Commercial Eggs

"There is a growing market today of consumers trying to avoid soy in their diet. Many people have developed soy allergies, and a number of people are concerned about the plant estrogen properties of soy protein. Soy protein is linked to the rise in hypothyroidism, early puberty in young girls, and lower testosterone levels in men, among other problems. Much of this research is documented in Dr. Kaayla Daniel’s book The Whole Soy Story.

What most people do not realize, however, is that due to the predominance of soy in animal feeds, soy protein is probably present in your food even if it is not listed as an ingredient anywhere. Very little testing has been done to determine if the soy protein from the animal feed is passed into the end products we consume. Most laboratories do not even have tests available to test for this.

Professor M. Monica Giusti, a poultry biologist of The Ohio State University, is one of the few people who has done research on soy isoflavones appearing in commercial egg yolks. She has designed lab tests to detect soy isoflavones. In 2009 one of her students published a master’s thesis on the transfer of the soy protein into egg yolks and chicken tissue: Quantification of Soy Isoflavones in Commercial Eggs and Their Transfer from Poultry Feed into Eggs and Tissues."

Article in its entirety:

What Is Real

"We have to create culture, don't watch TV, don't read magazines, don't even listen to NPR; create your own roadshow. The nexus of space and time where you are now is the most immediate sector of your universe, and if you're worrying about Michael Jackson or Bill Clinton or somebody else, then you are disempowered, you're giving it all away to icons, icons which are maintained by an electronic media so that you want to dress like X or have lips like Y. This is shit-brained, this kind of thinking.

That is all cultural diversion, and what is real is you and your friends and your associations, your highs, your orgasms, your hopes, your plans, your fears. And we are told 'no', we're unimportant, we're peripheral. 'Get a degree, get a job, get a this, get a that.' And then you're a player, you don't want to even play in that game. You want to reclaim your mind and get it out of the hands of the cultural engineers who want to turn you into a half-baked moron consuming all this trash that's being manufactured out of the bones of a dying world."

- Terence McKenna

Farming Study: Organic Trumps Conventional

"The results are in from a 30-year side-by-side trial of conventional and organic farming methods at Pennsylvania's Rodale Institute. Contrary to conventional wisdom, organic farming outperformed conventional farming in every measure.

There are about 1,500 organic farmers in Saskatchewan, at last count. They eschew the synthetic fertilizers and toxic sprays that are the mainstay of conventional farms. Study after study indicates the conventional thinking on farming - that we have to tolerate toxic chemicals because organic farming can't feed the world - is wrong.

 In fact, studies like the Rodale trials ( fst30years) show that after a three-year transition period, organic yields equalled conventional yields. What is more, the study showed organic crops were more resilient. Organic corn yields were 31 per cent higher than conventional in years of drought.

These drought yields are remarkable when compared to genetically modified (GM) 'drought tolerant' varieties, which showed increases of only 6.7 per cent to 13.3 per cent over conventional (non-drought resistant) varieties.

More important than yield, from the farmer's perspective, is income, and here organic is clearly superior. The 30-year comparison showed organic systems were almost three times as profitable as the conventional systems. The average net return for the organic systems was $558/acre/ year versus just $190/acre/year for the conventional systems. The much higher income reflects the premium organic farmers receive and consumers pay for.

But even without a price premium, the Rodale study found organic systems are competitive with the conventional systems because of marginally lower input costs."

Read more:

The Tide

Along the shore the tide always rises,
and then it falls.

I sit on the beach and watch
with my hands tied and feet cemented.
The waters engulf.

Sometimes I flail around,
trying to free myself from that which holds me down.
Mostly, though, I just sit there in the water,
letting it rise above my head.


Pretty soon the liquid crescendos.
I open my mouth and the let the water flood in.

Some would call this illogical,
but it is my only means to survive.

The water is cold.
It is in me.
Chills spread throughout my body,
and yet I sit here minute after minute,
hour after hour.

I am drowning.
I have died many times before.
I will die many times again.

Death is bizarre.
Death is warmth.

Without death, I die
and with it, I thrive.

Along the shore the tide always rises,
and then it falls.

- Teddy Grahams

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Understanding Fear

"Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."

 - Rainer Maria Rilke, via Coyote Prime


"We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons"

- Alfred E. Neuman

Geron Hoy: "King of Pangea"

I do not really have words to explain this one. It just feels good.


Ripening The Soul

"Each soul harbors a garden where a true story dwells in seed form and waits to be watered with attention and nourished with genuine emotion. The roots of the soul are eternal, yet the braces reach into time and would bear fruit amongst the living. If a person has found a path of meaning in the world, the inner fruits ripen and become a resource and nourishment inside as well as a source of sweetness and reassurance to those we encounter on the way.

If the fruits of the soul fail to ripen they bear a bitter legacy that leaks into life.  This inner bitterness tarnishes the subtle beauty of the world and eats away at the roots of meaning. Bitterness and wisdom cannot dwell in the same place. Unless something ripens within and becomes as a fruit ready to be shared and enjoyed a person grows bitter with age. Bitter or sweet, the soul tends to grow one way or the other."

"People argue about the source and meaning of evil acts found in all parts of this world where light and dark mix as often as day and night exchange places. An old meaning of evil was simply 'unripe.' Until the soul begins to grow towards its own sense of fullness and awareness it remains unripe, 'green' in the wrong way. If the inner motion of the soul be strongly denied the fruits become bitter and vile as the rejected inner seeds spread conflict and division.

No amount of good intentions or positive ideas can remove evil from this world; only that more people learn to ripen the seeds they carry within and find ways to assist meaningful and purposeful things to blossom and ripen in the garden of reality. When something in this world becomes ripe and ready it becomes 'good;' 'good enough to eat,' and beautiful to behold.  Until then it remains like unripened fruit, more likely to produce sour grapes and bitter feelings."

- Michael Meade,  The World Behind The World

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Farmageddon Trailer


"Love is the emblem of eternity; it confounds all notion of time; effaces all memory of a beginning, all fear of an end."

- Madame de Stael