Wake Up and Snooze

I have over the last eighteen months or so speculated that the pandemic is by way of an urgent wake-up call for humanity. Whereby many countries and leaders in particular were / are unwilling to face reality.

What has the pandemic taught us? It has taught us that we are all interconnected and interrelated. There is only ONE humanity. What happens on the other side of the globe impacts on this one. If someone catches a dose in China, it can end up in Patagonia, or Alaska. We are hesitant to learn this most obvious of lessons.

If we keep all the vaccines for ourselves and become complacent “we are so very double-vaccinated and therefore immune and safe” yet allow the virus to sample the mutation hypersurface elsewhere on the globe, the virus boomerang is in motion.

This silo thinking, we are all right Jack, foxtrot off you the poor, the unloved and the malnourished.

Instead of being global the mantra “charity begins at home” has shown where the hearts {?} of humanity truly are at. Smug justification…perhaps.

People don’t want to hear the wake-up call. They want to go back to what it was like and clock up the air miles getting basal cell carcinomas from too much sunshine on the beach. They want their air-miles green beans from Kenya. They want to press the snooze button.

It is the same with climate change.

If you are ambitious and acquisitional in your orientation you over consume and as a consequence you as an individual are directly and personally responsible for your part in global warming. If you “need” a new car, a new ‘phone, whilst the old ones are still functional, what does that say? It says that although you may worry about climate change, you don’t really give a toss. You simply MUST consume because everyone else is doing it. It may not occur to you that you are being hypocritical.

It is all down to China…if they stop their emissions, we shall all be OK.

Where exactly do you think that many of the components of your precious mobile ‘phone were made?

Is it the Falkland Islands or Vanuatu?

Our global notion of “reality” has again shifted these last few days. A bunch of low technology geezers with beards have outlasted the highly trained and ultra-high technology dudes.

It is strange in the UK people say that they don’t want immigration and yet they participate in regime change, invasion and destabilization. The home secretary, anti-immigration, has had to waive some of this for our “friends”. Is one not causative of the other?

As a whole I think that much of humanity wants to have its cake and eat it.  It is not thinking clearly as this is an illogical premise.

It is not ready to wake up, the hand is over the snooze button and maybe if we go back to sleep for another decade somebody else will have sorted the problems out.

How many more fires, how many more floods, how many more food-based humanitarian disasters will it take? Must the death toll rise to tens of millions before we as a vampiric species wake up and are brave enough to see dawn?

Vis Viva – Chapter 2 No Man

“No man is an iland intire of it’ selfe:
Every man is a peece of the continent;”


John Donne, Meditation XVII from Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions.

So then what happened to this organism called Eric and why is he writing this, his own personal Chautauqua? His motives for this are not clear. Nor yet are his natures for there are many of these. All that he has told me is that there is in him a pressing need to express, to find a way to describe what was and is a most interesting path through life and onwards.

“It all started with Jason Bourne.” He tells me this is as good a point as any, from which to start. When Jason, after he realises the nature of what he has gotten himself into, refuses to submit to the programme he is forced, trained as an assassin and begins his missions. When asked to kill a man in front of his children something of the David Webb in him resurfaces, he botches the mission and is nearly killed as a result. He is then quite literally adrift on the sea of life not knowing who or what he is, with but a few clues to his past and a fog of amnesia surrounding him. He goes back to look at all the places and the people he once knew, trying to piece together what has happened.

Metaphor then is what it says on the tin, it is a transfer by linguistic connivance; a transfer from another reality or world into this one. It presupposes that this one is common. Of course it isn’t, yet it might be. In the use of metaphor Eric reckons that one can get a flavour or a taste of what he is trying to say and hint at the depths of the other worlds’ journey to Annwn in search of Awen, the inspiration of the vis viva. The breath which breathes life into all things, the breath that comes on the four winds and the moods they bear with them upon their shoulders, sometimes lightly and sometimes not. The Chautauqua then, is the search for a personal sense of Jesus, that sense of the divine potential incarnate in us all; where we are our own personal saviour, a sangraal quest for our inner being; the sense of at-one-ment with the world around us and perhaps the non mundane.

Eric came upon something quite by accident when he was a young man, caught up in all the hedonism of student life. It was a series of books starting for him with “The Journey to Ixtlan” written by Carlos Castaneda and so he heard of this thing called “the Warrior’s path”. He was rather taken by this series of books and read them all with a zeal, he was later to become famous for. When he talked about them with his flat mates it was rather clear that he had taken them seriously and they hadn’t. Something funny was going on and that year he was rather ill with many fevers. But he could not pretend he hadn’t heard, because he had. He did not know what he had heard but it was, something.

He got his degree and went on to study for a Ph.D. in chemical physics or “pissing about with lasers” as he liked to call it. The solitude of dark laboratories, expensive toys and the beauty of pure, coherent light, brought him much joy. After a while he twigged that he was pretty good at all this, he understood the theories and could make a laser sing. When he stood up to talk about his work, people listened, they even published his papers in scientific journals, what a hoot!

Later, when Eric went back to his school in Gloucestershire and walked around the sports fields, where he had snuck out during “lock up” to watch the fireworks of Guy Fawke’s night, made dangerous, secret, trips “out of bounds” for walnuts and ran and ran and ran. How many times had he done rounds as punishment? How great was that slip-slap-slip of his feet in rhythm with his breath. This was where it all began; one of his Jason Bourne moments, and it was at the hand of a well meaning man who in one sentence and in one act changed a life.

Eric had not settled in boarding school, his school work was messy and erratic reflecting his inner turmoil and his struggles to survive. Finally now at the age of 12 he sat his common entrance examination, though for him it was really another mock as he was due to be in the scholarship class next year. And there it was, on the English paper; write an essay inspired by any of the following. He chose:

“No man is an iland intire of it’ selfe:
Every man is a peece of the continent;”


John Donne, Meditation XVII from Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions.


There it was his first quay off, off from the day to day and into the palace of dreams, it was the febrile stuff of a doorway into his inner world, shimmering, veil like, in the wind of his existence. There is someone else, after all, who had something of him.

Eric for once let it all go; he expressed all his inner loneliness drifting in a coracle from that Cape Town harbour, abandoned under the stars of the Southern Cross and without hope, until there, on the horizon was the first light of day. The master marked his essay and wrote of the poetry in Eric’s soul on his report card and then he did it. He read it out in assembly.

No man would write like that would they? After all the bullying on his sexuality, that was it, proof and in front of the whole school. There it was, never, never, never let it go again. How very attractive the science classes were after that. How easily he gained marks and passed the exams.

Eric says that it was a life that had two potentialities severed by a choice that was not really his, circumstance made it and his parents were now happy. His Nan though, was so proud of that comment, a poet in the family! When Eric saw the report card quite recently he could still smell the ink, a dark vivid blue, Parker’s Quink, written with a sloping italic nib. He experienced the same fear as he had done thirty years before. Eric had been here, here with the musty thin report book, charting his progress. He had held that book many, many times. Now though he could read between the lines, written by the teachers, having written many such things himself.

This was a node in his life, one of many. That world so precious and private to him had been taken out and with the best intentions, thrashed in public. Eric began to blend and here the chameleon was truly born. The twin Gods of should and ought began to take their hold on his psyche and he became the best sportsman he could be and the best scientist. He still did languages but kept them tight on a rein. He needed the marks for his exams.

Still and even on days like today when the rain caresses the ground he can remember the other country where people can be who they are; and all those water bottle windows gazed through; day dreaming in the foothills of that other country; the one that seems so far yet so close. And, again the window ledge is just wide enough to sit on, waiting for his parents who never came to rescue him. They weren’t of that other country so how could they possibly know what it was like. Nor was anyone it would appear.


I vow to thee, my country, all earthly things above,
Entire and whole and perfect, the service of my love:
The love that asks no question, the love that stands the test,
That lays upon the altar the dearest and the best;
The love that never falters, the love that pays the price,
The love that makes undaunted the final sacrifice.

And there’s another country, I’ve heard of long ago,
Most dear to them that love her, most great to them that know;
We may not count her armies, we may not see her King;
Her fortress is a faithful heart, her pride is suffering;
And soul by soul and silently her shining bounds increase,
And her ways are ways of gentleness and all her paths are peace.


I Vow to Thee My Country, Sir Cecil A. Spring-Rice, 1918.


And that search for the other country was to continue for many years to come, always resident and poignant in his heart. Ready and fresh in his dreams yet as secret and as encrypted as it was possible to be. Buried deep within the layers of ice, the ice of a thousand tears cried in a silence of a song unsung and unspoken. No one knew what he thought and that gave him a sense of power. There, no one could harm him. There he was safe and he didn’t have to trust anyone.

When they let him read the lessons and the prayers he was very happy. Deep within him then the sense of the sacred was sanctuary and he did not mind that the others had their parents with them and that his were five thousand miles away. He and all the other expat boys got to ring the bells too!


Seigneur, faites de moi un instrument de Votre paix.
Là où il y a de la haine, que je mette l’amour.
Là où il y a l’offense, que je mette le pardon.
Là où il y a la discorde, que je mette l’union.
Là où il y a l’erreur, que je mette la vérité.
Là où il y a le doute, que je mette la foi.
Là où il y a le désespoir, que je mette l’espérance.
Là où il y a les ténèbres, que je mette Votre lumière.
Là où il y a la tristesse, que je mette la joie.

Ô Maître, que je ne cherche pas tant à être consolé qu’à consoler, à être compris qu’à comprendre, à être aimé qu’à aimer, car c’est en donnant qu’on reçoit, c’est en s’oubliant qu’on trouve, c’est en pardonnant qu’on est pardonné, c’est en mourant qu’on ressuscite à l’éternelle vie.

Par Saint François d’Assise


Later in life it was another rose that sneaked into his life and turned partially in the mortice to release the first seeds of an efflorescence that was to take him deep into Annwn and Awen; there again to offer him the proof that he was different and yet ultimately, the same.

Eric tells me that until you have been touched by the fingers of death there is no real concept of life. That you cannot begin to conceive life itself and that living is more of a going through the motions of existence. There is no fecundity in living and the organism which is the vehicle remains only partially awake, until the organising indwelling thing catches the breath of the vis viva and is inspired. Before this can happen the form side of life needs tended. The weeds and brambles that adorn the island of existence are pruned and hacked back; all that is unwanted is bagged up and taken to the re-cycling centre. Only then can the form side of life settle in the sea of floating things and allow creativity to stream forth un-abated. And it is the fingers of death that encourage the danse macabre of transformation, for it is only in the theatre of death that man can see his true script for this, his sojourn on the stage, where he is player for us all.

Eric says that he is lucky in that death has touched him three times now, and that the archetype of le mort should be welcome as it brings with it true change, for only then can man touch the very outer limits of his potential and truly, dance the edge. It is the universe’s way of showing the glory of incarnation and if we chose to see it, the pettiness of our doings and the darkness, which is so very often of our own making.

That island is crammed full with stuff, thoughts, should and ought. Filled with words that are not ours, choc-a-bloc with ideas put there by others, aspirations and ideals that have precious little to do with you; a veritable Shinjuku station at rush hour in time lapse photography where wave after wave of gripes and moans chant the koans of consumerism; the must have and the “if only” of the realms of the hungry ghosts.

“You know that people are rarely truly silent.” He says.

“True silence is what people fear the most. There and then, is the no-thing-ness of existence and it is primordial. It is before and will be after us and that is where the creative power of the void can be found, echoing out the very first sound into the darkness of manifestation; a single word which breaks the silence. It is this connectivity with the in-finite that man fears, insisting that it is only he and his island. He is lost in the sea of life, that he is one and has already separated from the zero.”

Eric likes to call the organising thing that animates the form the power within, as all the other words are now second hand. He distinguishes between the power within and the power without for clarity only. They are all part of the same awareness. He says that this distinction is a hangover from his sense of individuating identity and helps keep him sane, allowing him to tell all the stories that other people like so that they don’t panic or think him odd.

He says we all have a power within and it is the vis viva that animates this potential within us so that it incarnates. The one life chooses an aspect of awareness to materialise into form. This manifestation has an impact, it slows things down so that awareness becomes dream-like and foggy. It is just that so many people like the dream so much they aren’t willing to stop the world and wake up in the dream. The matrix of existence is so full of clamour and glamour that it straps people into a sense of reality that isn’t really there in the sea of the floating things. The folly of permanence and the arrow of time exclude the magic of being; after all we are all counter entropic beings are we not?

The incarnate matrix of existence has its stories and rules, by focusing intent upon their maintenance the world conspires to limit the potentialities to physical plane function whilst the organism and its thoughts keep the power within at bay with the brouhaha of social interaction and the relentless mind numbing noise of mass media and marketing. The voice of the power within remains unheard and talked over by the internal dialogue, often externalised, that convinces itself, at least partially, that the world of illusion is all that there is. This then is the sleight of hand that tells us we should be interested in what Manchester United are doing and whether of not Jennifer Anniston has found Mr Right; a sleight of hand that distracts us from perhaps our true purpose which is maybe, just maybe understanding the meaning behind why the vis viva animated the power within to incarnate so as to gain knowledge through physical plane existence and the challenges inherent in that.

Eric says that the irony is we dreamed this world into being yet most of us don’t even remember doing it and insist that this dream is real. Eric says that people have told him that he is a pretty powerful dreamer and he has no evidence to prove otherwise. He knows that for ten years of his life he did his very best to kill all of his dreams, he numbed them with chemicals and beer so that they would not speak to him at night. He says that coma is a good way to do this. The power within was wise to this and set him up with that visit to Negril, it had been silenced for too long and the sleeper must awaken. Eric didn’t realise it but he was in for a pretty rough ride after that.

Can a Strongly Materialistic Society Stop Global Warming?

In my honest opinion, I doubt it very much, so no.

We may like to kid ourselves that our ingenuity will allow us to continue to exploit the planet and accumulate things. Our little tweaks here and there, might slow things a little. There are just way too many human beings, and we are such greedy bastards. The mantra is more, more, more. We must have the latest gadget phone thingy so that we can share fatuous software optimised photos of consumption with each other in a competitive keeping up with the Joneses manner.

“Look at me I flew to the Maldives so I can post a picture of myself in a £200 bikini.”

“I went to St Barts and wore a Rolex”.

This competitive consumption is a root cause of global warming. This acquisitional urge is an underlying malady. When will humanity understand the meaning of “enough”?  What is this elusive noumenon?

“Greed is Good” quoted the Wolf of Wall Street and Uncle Boris.

If humanity fails to learn from the current situation the simple lesson that it is One Humanity, One World and in a very real sense One Life, what will happen? It will continue to lurch from crisis to crisis until it destroys the planet completely. What we see now are but the subtle and minor harbingers of crises to come. These a like the appetizers.

We can bemoan our ruined wine harvest, berate the government for inadequate flood defences and insufficient firemen and water to put out the blazes. Where will the money come from? There is not much left in the coffers due to Covid.  

Or we can recognise that the change starts at home and actually do something about our orientation towards life. Ease off on being such vampiric consumers sucking the very blood out of the earth.

Humanity imagines that it can have its cake and eat it. No need to change, consume, consume, consume. There is always tomorrow.

I was joking with the wife that I might invest in a Dutch dyke building and land recovery company. That should provide revenue until the world burns and drowns.

In thirty yeas time I probably will not be here.

What will 2050 look like?

I’ll wager living on this plant will be much harder by then.

We are simply unwilling to imagine it. We must have our fortnight in the sun.

Unless insatiable humanity learns the meaning of enough, we are up shit creek, in a barbed wire canoe, without a paddle!

Hmnn..

Most continue to cost up the solar panel arrays.

Pandemic – A time for reflection and change?

I have just been out for a wander around the pond, down by Le Jaudy. I have been wondering how come people from my deep past keep appearing at the edge of my consciousness and on occasion in my dreams. If people appear in your dreams it can mean that there is a need to recapitulate your relationship with them. I have on occasion looked these people up, found an email address and contacted them, on the off chance that they were experiencing similar phenomena. So far very few have gotten back.

You never know why you have called forth another being into your life until hindsight tells you, should you be bothered to look. I am reasonably convinced that most people I have met have had little or no inkling of what I am about nor why I incarnated again.

The world is changing, this from the Times Higher:

“Today there are warnings that Australian higher education is in “deep trouble” over plummeting numbers of international students that may never recover to pre-pandemic levels. Plus, new figures in the UK on the changing age profile of the professoriate raises questions about opportunities for younger scholars.”

In some ways the world is shrinking, and we are now realising that it is One World, One Life. What happens in South Africa, Brazil and the UK echoes, ripples out across all the other continents. We might think that we can live in our bubbles, safe and secure. But that too has a cost. The interconnectedness is very strong. If we covet all the vaccine, then others go without and the virus longevity globally is enhanced.

People miss things, opportunities and possibilities. As a species we have a possibility to change now but what are we doing? We are wanting to get back to how things were before the pesky virus changed our existence. This is a bit recidivist. Could it be that the planet, Gaia, for want of a better name, has sent us this virus of our own making, as a clarion call for change?

Unless we stop being so selfish and materialistic, buggering up the climate, we may get more of the same. We don’t like the medicine, yet we persist, in being so very materialistic. We do not need to go to the Maldives on holiday. We covet so many things that are not necessary, they are an added luxury.

We may have time on our hands, which we could use for reflection. To try to figure out what has purpose and meaning in our lives. Or we could complain, gripe and moan about how unfair lock down is. We can’t play with our friends or go out on the lash with our pals. And we have to spend time with our children, teach them, instead of packing them off to class.

I suspect that some people are getting a whole bunch of positive out of this pandemic thingy, others not.

Here is a good question:

What is the pandemic teaching ME about the meaning and the purpose of life?

Dharma of the Day #11 {onions}

Try always to make a difference

And when the wall

Stands stark before you

Step back and, dissolve

 

Know that life is not a sprint

Be not like Usain

Rather like Mo

Life is not a meal to be bolted down

 

Have courage always

For trial is learning

Dressed in a countenance

Which like a scroll, unfolds

 

Say your piece

And that is all

Do not force anything

Tickle life, with your words

 

When others cannot see

That which you see

Do not worry!

Every onion has its layers

 

Peeling onions

Sometimes makes you cry

But they add flavour

And taste to a dish

 

Blow your nose

Wash your hands

And reach for the parsley

Chop it fine

 

See aren’t things looking better

Already?

One Life One Spirit

 

each of us a syllable

crafted with our very own slant

by the italic nib of fate

 

some of us are bold

others, fainter in the margin

perhaps even in lemon juice

 

as time unfolds papyrus

the universal spirit of man

levels us all

 

the knock of the reaper

the soul certainty

of life, will beckon

 

the white rabbits

always in a rush,

mustn’t be late

 

deep underwater

lungs bursting

the spirit climbs the rope

 

no decompression stops

as the air fizzes

champagne in the veins

 

even the absolute

cannot suppress spirit

forever

 

downtrodden perhaps,

beaten never

irrepressible ultimately, always

 

the universal spirit

core of the one life

surfaces and breathes oxygen

 

and mankind knows

it will never be beaten

not now, not ever

 

drying in the sun

he races the reaper

to knock upon your door

 

thence to whisper hope

in your ears

and vitality your eyes

 

can you hear him

on the gravel in the driveway?

he has come for you

 

he will knock only once

bearing liberty on his lips

and a taste of  freedom

 

can you hear him knocking … …