Saturday, 11 January 2020

2020 Vision

Dear Reader,

Firstly, my warmest best wishes to you and my sincere hope that yours will be a Happy Year!

My apologies, however, for this delayed wish as the first week of the month has been filled with all kinds of tasks and appointments that have fully occupied me.

But I have also made some time to reflect more on what it is that I want to concentrate on this year and what is, furthermore, a new decade.  That reflection has caused me to see that this is very much the beginning of a new period and that anything prior to this year was 'the old time'. I feel sure that we now face a time of utter change - and a chance for something great to start to manifest itself despite all the apparent negativity that we see around us and in various parts of the world.

The situation now is in such stark contrast to the state of things as my life as a teenager was coming to an end in the early 1960s, having until then lived a quiet yet contented life, without any wealth except the plentiful flora and fauna that my father encouraged in his gardens, and as the country started to emerge from its post-war 'blues'.

Further, over several years in the early 1960s, I traversed the UK and large parts of Europe by hitch-hiking. In doing so I had plentiful wonderful experiences in meeting people wherever I went who were welcoming and outgoing - and mostly looking forward to the day when the UK would join what was then the European Common Market! Such wonderful memories I have, but sixty years later and we find Europe in a state of near disintegration. Ego and selfishness have taken their toll.

The current world changes are coming about for one very great reason: it is time. It is time - it is as simple as that. But the change will not properly work for us unless we make the effort and wake up to our situation. Sorry to put it bluntly, but that's how it is. Only by positivity and a sense of selflessness will we succeed. Only by praying to see the Light and acting accordingly will we escape from negativity.

To bring about positive change, this new era will need us to see everyone in this world with fresh eyes and to accept everyone as a brother or sister, and to respect Mother Earth. It is no longer the time to take the selfish view of concentrating on just self, family and friends and making money and having a 'happy time'. It is time for everyone to look at the whole world in the spirit of One-ness and preparedness to help. 

The situation - of so-called 'Climate Change' - demands that approach if for no other reason! We have to - personally and collectively - reduce the pollution that exists, whether that be in respect of gaseous emissions, industrial emissions or even states of anger which cause violent thoughts to spread from one person or group to another. That latter issue may imply a change in what we consume.

The media - which captures so much of our attention these days - in general needs to come back to doing what it did 50 years ago in providing quality news and entertainment. And we need to curtail our use of mobile phones - they are causing disruptions to the ecosystem. Further, we need to listen to harmonious music and circulate amongst agreeable company rather than allow ourselves to be stimulated towards aggression.

Perhaps we should cease watching and reading anything in the media unless it is a quality production? I'm being serious because unless we cleanse our minds of aggression and wanton thinking that perpetuates negativity, our task is likely to be thwarted. If children can go on strike from school in protest against Climate Change, we adults can respond by going on strike against those things that are harming our way of life and our thought processes. Especially anything that harms our children's future.

To encourage others to stop doing all those self-harmful things that are ingrained is difficult and may not sound very attractive to them, but isn't it better to change voluntarily rather than wait for more disasters to occur? We seem to be unconscious of the fact that what we do - whether personally or communally - has a knock-on effect.

As humans, the great majority of us feel so concerned about the state of things in Australia, yet perhaps we are all part of the cause of what has happened there! If we were to think in those terms perhaps we might do more to put things right - by restricting our usage and consumption of things that have so badly affected our way of life and the environment. I believe that voluntarily giving up the ways of the world only leads to personal happiness. Retain what is good and reject the rest.

On BBC's Question Time on Thursday, a member of the panel was calling for a plan of imaginative planning to bring about a rise in our standard of living! In response, I say that though the poorest need more support, for the majority it is good that we have had to peg back (in the UK) this past 10 years - it brings about a better sense of reality, for it is that kind of reality that we should be facing up to. And do it with a smiling face knowing - through Love and Compassion - that conservation and good housekeeping is better for the whole planet and its occupants.

The answer to 'Climate Change' and to bring back social harmony is in our own hands. We should not leave it to others, although I do not believe we are alone in the development that is Project Earth. There is much help at hand. On that point, whatever might appear that is strange in this new era, do not respond in fear as we have been conditioned by the media. The intention of the Universe - of God - is love, nothing else.

The marvellous Indian avatar Sri Sathya Sai Baba said (as long ago as 2011):
This is most ... most important. You cannot go on digging things out of the Earth. It has to stop at some stage and this needs to be focused upon now.
and, predicting a change in the world...
[The] way of thinking will no longer be to raise a sword or a gun to sort out a problem ... rather they will sit, and discuss issues and arrive at consensus ... or they will agree to disagree, but there will still be harmony.
This will not be long in happening - at all levels - because of a change of consciousness in us all, aided by us becoming more focused on Love and Compassion rather than fear. 

We all have a job to do - to create peace and harmony. I wish you well. 

To help with some good personal pointers, click here for 'Wake Up World!'

Thank you for reading this.

Friday, 13 December 2019

Well, Who Is He?! ... And What Is He?

Dear Reader,

Well, there we have it.  The People have spoken and it's had the decided effect of taking us in a specific direction away from where, until now, there has been discord and much of it.

Now, Boris Johnson has had the shackles removed and he has quite a measure of freedom in his parliamentary majority to do all the things that he wants to do.

I have to say, that listening to his victory speech on Friday morning, he displayed a sense of responsibility and - indeed - some humility in acknowledging his debt to the voters who have put him in the position where he is.  Further, on the face of it he seems to recognise that vast amount of work that needs to be done - in schools, health, police, equal opportunities and even local communities, to repair the damage of his own party's failings these last near-10 years.

Significantly, and welcomingly, he seems to want to champion green issues.

Now the important thing is that hardly any of this was spoken of in the Tory Manifesto.  The attitude was simply, "We'll get Brexit done so then we can do other things..."  But now, at his time of victory, he suddenly labels his political party as "The People's Party" and is enthusiastic about getting through a lot of work that is important to the People (as he sees it).

Though there is something vaguely attractive about Mr. Johnson's approach, I remain hugely sceptical.

The whole plan regarding borders for Northern Ireland is an idea that Johnson himself said, a year or so back, was something that no government would tolerate.  But here he's happy to go with it as though it's perfectly OK - despite its unpopularity.

He does seem to have a tendency towards the chameleon. And to what extent environmental issues will get addressed is very much to be seen. Despite his assurances in Friday morning's speech, the detail is very much unknown.  It was to be noted that what seems to be his pet rottweiler, Michael Gove, stood at the podium in advance of Johnson to put the matter in focus. Gove's persona was pumped up - yet controlled - with a "this is our moment" euphoria.

Corbyn was, Gove seemed to infer, the anti-semitic blaggard and someone we should no longer be in fear of ever again. He went on to make it sound as though the saviour was at hand. Tch. Tch.  Only a few minutes before Corbyn had been seen in friendly conversation with a black skull-capped Jewish politician.  I don't believe that Corbyn himself is anti-semitic, but I do think there are elements in this Labour Party that are a questionable lot.

But so too, Mr. Gove, there are elements in this Tory Party that are a questionable lot.

For me, we continue to miss the main issues - and we don't seem to care.  That is concerning the very consciousness (or lack of it) we have about ourselves and our environment. And after thousands of years of building up a United Kingdom from small kingdoms - and the Vikings, and later joined by the Scots - we now seem to see that our future is about dis-unity.

The story is not finished yet, I am sure. Despite what is being said, there is no magical switch over to Brexit with all matters cleared up - that will take (the experts say) years to accomplish.  And can Johnson truly achieve his stated aim of One Nation politics? So, therefore, what will be the result?  More obfuscation I suspect.

Many marriages produce problems that require special attention, and so it is in the outside world too.  By divorcing there is invariably little that is resolved except an attempted removal of 'the problem' - which in fact doesn't get entirely removed as it invariably leaves a trail of poison.  And that contaminates subsequent encounters.

Even Brexit was mostly a reaction to the degree of immigration that had been allowed. And it split the UK - it was not a decisive outcome. So much for democracy. 

I do feel that our educational system needs to be more geared to how to properly discriminate between what is right from wrong in big-life decisions - for when it comes to the really big issues there is a right and a wrong. How else can we correctly choose? In the end, most seem to vote for what suits them, not for the bigger picture and what is better for everyone and everything. Short term-ism never produces answers: there must always be a long-term goal in mind.

Where are the true leaders, for if Johnson and Corbyn were the best we can find we are really in trouble! But I do sense that in the wings there are good people who will soon emerge.

For a world that is crying for unity, we are going the wrong way about achieving it.  It is an alarming picture that will - I am sure - come back to haunt us.  And quite soon, too. 

Thank you for reading this.

Saturday, 30 November 2019

Which Devil Do You Want?

Dear Reader,

I do not really like to be embroiled in the squabbling that takes place around election time. You see far too many rattling all kinds of rattles to gain attention. But the production this week by the Labour Party of hard proof of negotiations - and the flavour of them - with the US, does cause me to pause and want to take stock of just where Brexit might lead us.

Nothing ever stays the same - and we should not expect it to - but though the EU has its own set of issues that need dealing with, at least those member countries are much closer to home and we know them well from old. It's the proverbial case, as I see it, of staying with the devil you know rather than move closer to the unquantifiable devil (the US) that has enormous clout and would certainly dominate so-called trade "negotiations".

One problem is that they speak English - though people say that's an advantage. Unfortunately, American-speak is quite a different variety of language when spoken at negotiating time. And they have hard-brained corporations right behind their backs to make sure that the US gets the best of any deal.

Greenpeace has something more to say about the documents brought to light by Labour:
The Brexit trade docs leaked this week by Jeremy Corbyn aren’t just about the NHS. They also have a lot to say on food, climate and chemicals. The US refused to reference climate change in any future trade agreement. Meanwhile, the UK said they were ‘in listening mode’ about the American approach to food standards, reigniting concerns that the government was minded to accept lower food standards in exchange for a post-Brexit trade deal with the US. 
Under a Trump-style government, I see all kinds of ugly matters raising their heads. Even though a new presidential election is coming up the future in the USA is far from certain.

Brexit will, surely, also propel us to dealing more with China - another huge economy that would dominate the negotiating table - and with China using questionable methods on its own citizens (particularly those who don't toe the Party Line), so is this a nation we really want to be that close to?

The whole argument of dealing with far-flung countries came under sharper focus this past week when it came to light (not revealed on the main TV channels) that 4,000 sheep were lost on a sunken carrier ship at sea. I suspect, however, that we are so inured to consuming meat without a thought that it came from a sentient animal we will treat such news as though it's a fleck (flock?!) in the ocean. The authorities clearly didn't want us to know too much about that news item.

Brexit might just lead to another kind of exit. The one that is marked "Stop the world - I want to get off!". The reason for that is because there is another issue that transcends anything else on the political agenda. There is - as though we hadn't noticed - something called 'Climate Change' that has rapidly evolved and Professor Tim Lenton, director of the Global Systems Institute at the University of Exeter has said, this very week: 
"A decade ago we identified a suite of potential tipping points in the Earth system, now we see evidence that over half of them have been activated" He added: "We might already have crossed the threshold for a cascade of inter-related tipping points." For much more detail, see this Science Daily report.
The UK political parties simply treat Climate Change as just one item on their agenda with no different priority. But surely our attitude - and our thinking - must be geared to what Climate Change, and the degree of it, signifies. Hasn't it clicked that our Consciousness - or lack of it - is way off beam? Hasn't it clicked that the very paradigm by which we have lived this past few hundred years - towards exploitation - is not correct?

This very short video should remind us all of the danger and the thinking that has brought us to this deplorable state. But if we really want to find it, there is a solution.
Albert Einstein: "...with every problem there's a solution[; it's] just a matter of taking action".
The biggy is: hasn't it yet clicked that there is a universal spiritual message that is waiting to be recognised. I rather suspect that unless we consciously recognise and apply that message - that message of our connectivity with everything around us and our need to live accordingly, in gratitude -  then we could lose this enormous challenge that is staring us in the face. "And where is that message?", you ask. It's there, within the most ancient of teachings and in a more hidden form in the Bible. The Qur'an is said to have seven layers of meaning. It's probably more clear in the Bhagavad Gita. It's there in nature. It's everywhere, would we have the eyes to see and ears to listen, which is why the ancient cry of men of wisdom was "Awake!" and "Know Thyself!".

Perhaps 'Climate Change' is the reaction of Planet Earth to the psychic state which the world's population has evolved to? According to writer Freddy Silva (no, until lately I'd not heard of him either - but he has written some fascinating articles and books):
Two years before the end of his life in 1961 the psychologist C.G. Jung made a remarkable statement in which he posits coming events which are in accord with the end of an era. As we know from ancient Egyptian history, they are the symptoms of psychic changes that always appear at the end of one Platonic month (2160 years) and at the beginning of another.
And, about where we are now:
The world has indeed witnessed portents of major transformation since Jung's presentiment. All its systems of governance and ecology have reached precipitous levels not seen in historic times: unparalleled overpopulation, unsustainable growth, mass species extinction, [the] bankruptcy of world governments, highest leverage of institutional debt relative to Gross Domestic Product, ad infinitum. And true to Jung's vision more than two million documents have been amassed on UFOs by the U.S. government alone; there has also been a rise in apparitions of holy figures, incandescent balls of light flying across the land at tremendous speed, the strange phenomenon of orbs captured by infrared flash photography, not to mention the sudden rise and worldwide proliferation of crop circles. [my italics]
Far-fetched? I wonder.

The upshot is that if we don't change ourselves then we will almost certainly have change forced upon us.

Oh ... I nearly forgot. Freddy Silva? If you want to know more about 'Consciousness' and how to find it - and also learn more about how the whole world is spiritually related - then please put aside 90 minutes to watch this entertaining (yet beneficial) video. It has important clues (not answers!) - I assure you. And by looking into this we will surely leave aside the strange existence we have been living all these years. At the very least we would come to know that we are all brothers and sisters of the one Father and try to live in the harmony that relationship should engender. Especially in the matter of mutual help and sharing - without reliance on 'things'.

Thank you for reading this. I wish you well.

Sunday, 17 November 2019

Words - And Their Effect

Dear Reader,

Politicians - as always - cause a lot of eyebrows to be raised, especially at times of political contention, including election time.

Assuming for a moment that 'Aliens' exist, and they were visiting the UK for the first time, they would surely be astonished at the way our politicians conduct their business. They vie against one another as though their party is 100% right about everything it was proposing when even 50% might be a debatable figure. And, of course, they make accusations against their opponents as though they are the only pure people to be considered.

But what is worse is that many of us take them seriously, for as we get older we tend to be less principled - cynical, even - and vote for what we think makes the best sense for the moment. Oh dear, can't we see what that leads to?! How can Brexit be the major issue when major climate issues are staring at us in the face, with the floods in the north and east midlands as a major case in point. Those floods are not a one-off.

Furthermore, we have a situation where not only the NHS is short of 43,000 medical staff and where school classroom sizes have ballooned from what they were nearly 10 years ago - when the Tories took office. And teachers have left their profession in droves because of bureaucracy.

The matter of Brexit seems to deflect us from those issues. Will voting Tory to get Brexit done solve those NHS and education issues? And not only that but the need for a return to proper funding of local councils so they can properly dispense the services that they are there to perform.

Now - as I've made it clear before - I am not intending to vote Labour, who promise to deal with those major issues and others, including (sensibly) the cancellation of the nuclear submarine programme. I choose not to vote for them because I frankly do not trust their leadership. But that doesn't mean I should vote for the current government, as I simply do not trust their leadership either.

I never did have 100% faith in our political leadership, but once upon a time I thought there were some worthies that deserved being listened to. Now I cannot respect any of the main parties, mainly because their representatives invariably speak with forked tongues or wear very tinted spectacles. The situation concerning our political leadership is very dire indeed in my view.

Speech - what people say, how they say it and what do they mean by it - is in my view a key matter that we need to address: it is fundamental, in fact, and in importance precedes the question of political policies, and particularly Brexit. We seem to have lost grip of our integrity and unity as a nation, as well as individuals. We (generally) do not make any real effort to determine what is the right approach to determining our future and are all too willing to settle for what is - at best - a 3rd rate result. And condemn the young generation to the fruits of our cynical point of view.

In my view, we need to get back to basics with the intention of restoring our national integrity, and that means we, individually, need to be the main focus of change. Especially with regard to speech and how it is uttered. In fact, a few days ago I read a simple but appropriate story that demonstrates the effect of speech:

Once it so happened that a teacher was giving a lesson to some children in the classroom. The teacher was telling the students about love for God, fear of sin and also the importance of speaking the truth. At that moment, a visiting school inspector overheard the teacher make that statement. Not liking what the teacher was telling the students he came inside the classroom.
The inspector told the teacher, “You are stating such lofty words to the children. Will there be any change or transformation in the children because of these words?” The inspector went on, saying: “By speaking these words, there is no effect on the children. You are merely speaking these words”.
The teacher, however, was very clever. He told a student, “Hold this inspector by his shirt collar and throw him out of the classroom!” The inspector then got very angry, telling the teacher, “You are putting me to shame. I am going to punish you”. The teacher responded, “I simply spoke those words. I did not really throw you out of the classroom. Right now you said ‘using a word does not make any impact then why are you doing it’, but because I used a harsh word, and despite what you said, there was so much reaction from within you”.
Therefore, the teacher proved that every word does have a deep and significant meaning. When a word is spoken, there is a feeling behind that word that leaves its mark on the one being spoken to.
For me, this story - though it does not specifically say so - also relates to what is said in terms of whether an issue is true or not. We should not be allowed to be swayed by a political argument if it does not meet certain imperative truth tests, such as 'is it likely that such a policy will have a positive effect on climate change?' or 'will that policy help to bring about world peace?'

Why do I have such a strong view on this? Because we are intended to live according to certain universal laws. There follows another quotation from Hindu tradition (note that Aum - or Om - is recited before and after all Hindu prayers):

The fundamental element [in the universe] is space. Space is nothing but a kind of vibration. What is that vibration in the space? That is nothing but the sound of Aum. The space is the fundamental component of every other element like wind, water, fire and earth. Therefore, every element has this vibration of Aum contained in it.
From the earth emerged the plant world. From plants comes the food. From food emerges man! Therefore, the vibration of Aum, which is there in the earth, manifests itself first in the plants, then in the food, then finally in man himself. Therefore, the Aum vibration is perpetually at work in every human being, twenty-four hours per day.
The conclusion from this is that what we say should be in tune with the universal vibration, Aum, in the way we conduct ourselves. Jesus, and all the great masters, understood this, as did philosophers and scientists like Ralph Waldo Emerson, Albert Einstein, and Aldous Huxley in his The Perennial Philosophy.

I happen to have the view that Hindu science and philosophy teaches far more than the modern versions of religion, whether Christian, Islamic or any other, though I do not question the validity of those religions in their own context. The above quotations mirror some basic and essential views of Hindu science and philosophy which, in my view, transcends normal religion.

If you can agree that those quotations seem to reflect some truth of existence, then we should be able to agree that we currently have some fundamental flaws in the way we speak and inter-relate as we all too often act without being conscious of those truths. Especially, but certainly not only, in the world of politics.

Perhaps we might be able to gain a proper sense of direction and be able to live in unity and peace if we could grasp and apply some of these truths. We can do it if we are willing and have love in our hearts. In fact, it is imperative we do this otherwise the future, the future of our children, looks bleak.

There are many people that strive in their own way to make this a better world, but it is now surely time that we collectively need to become more like real human beings rather than being influenced by the voices of fear. What else makes sense?

Thank you for reading this.

Sunday, 3 November 2019

Perhaps Prince Charles Should Read This?

Dear Reader,

Well, nothing seems to be working, does it? Brexit, having failed to happen despite a "Do it or bust" bluster from the P.M., continues to hog the headlines while the huge matter of Climate Change is relegated almost to page 3 material. Worryingly also, is the increasing sense of aggression in the world, locally indicated by the large group of women MPs who now seem keen to stand down because of the violence thrown at them by extremist trolls and others. 

Some are saying that since Brexit came to the fore in 2016 that society has become more polarised and is the main cause of the aggression just mentioned. But I put it more down to the time in the 1980s and after when the "me, me" society was encouraged - and by a woman MP, indeed: the famed Maggie Thatcher. That period under her stewardship is for me worthy of great study, for I feel that is the time when One Nation Politics seriously started to decline, though it was a partly understandable reaction to the Unions and their destructive work in the late 1970s. But Thatcher lacked the statespersonship to equitably deal with it.

Aside from which, the greatness of a nation is measured by the values it holds, and it is now disappointingly clear that there is a substantial number in the country who do not have the time of day for so-called 'Christian Values'. This attitude has progressively been developing since the 1950s and gaining momentum by the 1980s, as mentioned.

How can we begin to call ourselves "civilised" unless we inculcate the recognition of certain Human Values and abide by them? 

Back in the 19th century, many great Christian men and women would have come forth and made themselves heard, but who would stand up today and be heard? The Archbishop of Canterbury is listened to by the people of his persuasion, but few others. Prince Charles (the future head of all faiths in the UK, he says) thinks good things and does good works through the Princes Trust and his Dutchy of Cornwall, but otherwise stands aside from the everyday mayhem.

I say the country needs a strong voice to re-affirm what good Human (if not Christian) Values are and how they need to be applied, but '3 scourges' exist that need serious attention. I, therefore, admit that while the level of homelessness remains as high as it is, while the disabled are harrassed into dark corners, and while foodbanks exist, it will be very difficult to persuade the poorest to listen. And why should they when no-one acts to rectify their plight in the light of these '3 scourges'?

Therefore it comes down to basic action being needed, first and foremost, to tackle those '3 scourges'. A General Election should be what it is - to choose between overall policies - not merely be an attempt to sort out Brexit. My attitude - when I vote - will be to bear the '3 scourges' in mind. Nothing else, bar Climate Change. 

This Is A General Election - Not a Brexit Election

Now I never vote Tory anyway (apart from their inherent 'born to rule' tendency there's a nasty element amongst them), and I regard the Liberals as being divorced from real life as well. As I see it the only other genuine parties that would seriously tackle the '3 scourges' are Labour and the Greens. And since Labour has gone so far left and because the Greens are committed to serious action on Climate Change as well, then my choice is already made. It's a fait accompli as far as I'm concerned.

The sad thing is that, in more conventional times, the Greens would never obtain power. But the people are perhaps gradually beginning to finally see that there's more to politics - and life - than conventional economics and wealth. Politics needs a heart that is more in tune with the Earth as well as people, and the principles of the Green Party are the closest, in my opinion, to reality. That being the case I will give them my vote and regard Caroline Lucas as my prime minister. Bless her - she has more intelligence combined with compassion in her little finger than the brains of any other politician around in my view.

Mmmm... How about Caroline Lucas and Prince Charles to lead this country out of its mess? That combination might be less mad than meets the eye. Are they madder or likely to be less truly effective than those we regard as being the leaders of the main political parties?

Whatever our view on who is the most suitable leader, let's make this General Election what it should be - the choice of a party that has the best principles at heart to manage the affairs of the country in every respect - and not just Brexit. The Brexit matter has developed into an all-pervading nonsense and has taken us away from the most relevant issues.

To see what I am really pointing to I suggest we need to look at the broader picture of what has lately been happening in the world - one that began decades ago, and before that.

A US campaigner on this matter, referring to how it seems the USA is sliding away from important issues such as the Paris Accord On Climate Change, said this week (this is a part quotation):
Perhaps we’ve only taken these steps backwards to get the running start we need to be able to make a leap forward.

We are standing at a “decision point” moment, where the future of humanity hangs in the balance…

And while there’s still the possibility that we could fail and continue in the regressive spiral we seem to be caught in right now, we will instead, as a species, rise into a new awareness of our Oneness, as we collectively and consciously evolve.

But for this to happen, more Conscious Leaders are needed who can help others see the bigger picture and inspire them to live their lives inside the deeper connection we all share to the Source of everything.

This leadership will come from the grassroots of every country in the world, and from you and everyone who stands ready to actively choose that better future our destiny draws us toward.
This statement is in accord with what I envision, and the orator is far from being alone in this challenge. And, as he suggests, and despite the deep underlying anger and aggression that is developing, those that can should awaken to this positive spirit. Without it, we are surely like a rudderless ship inexorably drifting towards chaos.

I really do apologise if it sounds that I've written this article as a piece of political propaganda. It's not, I assure you. It's merely the biggest hint that I can think of to state that we must start looking at the world through different spectacles. The old ways are no longer sustainable and nor do they any longer apply. The new way starts by energising love in our hearts and by trying to put the Earth aright by voting Green on December 12! And also by reducing our carbon footprint and by growing more vegetables in our back garden! Taking those steps is not the complete answer but will help us to move closer to re-discovering meaningful Human Values.

The future of Mother Earth and its tenants is in the hands of all of us.

Thank you for reading this.

Sunday, 20 October 2019

Abiding By Reality

Dear Reader,
      Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
      The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide;
      When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
      Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me.

      Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
      Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
      Change and decay in all around I see—
      O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
This is a week where anger seems to have been raising its ugly head more than ever in recent decades. My wife and I have directly experienced the sharp end of that unsavoury instrument this week from a neighbour, and in all the main topics that form the main news of the day, anger is often the underlying principle.

Anger - by its very nature - is directed outwards, the person or persons venting their frustration against something they perceive to be the cause of their frustration. But the secret is that all too often what anger is expressed is against a reflection of their own choice or of their own belief system or of some aspect of quality apparently missing in their own lives. 

Hitler knew this, and in using its power he successfully engineered the anger of the so-called pure German people against the Jewish people to psychologically alleviate the suffering imposed on them by the victorious powers after the First World War. Anger can be a terrible weapon, and dictatorships all too often try to deflect the anger of their own people to some other cause on a false pretext.

Today, anger seems to be developing as a principle way by which people can express themselves. I am not suggesting that protesting is wrong per se, but where any violence (physical or verbal) is employed it will most likely have the reverse result of what is expected. As Ghandi successfully demonstrated.

At football matches, for example, there are pockets of fans (as a friend rightly describes) who engage in "vile chanting, which not only contains foul language, but is often personally abusive to people. What some players and managers have to put up with is also unacceptable. Some of the hand gestures towards opposing supporters, players, manager and referee are also highly offensive...".

I agreed with him and wrote to our mutually favoured football club to express this concern and suggested that some form of pre-match community singing be introduced - perhaps (but not necessarily) using the long-utilised Abide With Me heard at all FA Cup Finals. But it received a rather wishy-washy response from that club, saying they would pass the idea around but suggesting that the club should not impose such a thing on the fans.

But football clubs or their overseers have always imposed things on the fans. For example, the triumphal entrance music when the players come out, which can, in fact, exacerbate a sense of aggression. Or at least that music can suggest compliance of the club with the stimulation of a competitive spirit - which for some can degenerate into what my friend described.

Music itself has the ability to change mood, so the least competition-generating music the better in my view. And better still if those attending matches can sing in unison about something that will help to bind them together in a cooperative way. Yes, I know that fans sing their own self-made songs during the match, but that's not quite what I refer to, though it could be if the thinking behind it was appropriate.

The key matter is that all too often people generate anger about something that they themselves have helped to create. It is very easy to point fingers at others, and one reason why I am cautious about Greta Thunberg's approach. In point of fact, I believe that the argument that she and her followers put forward about mass extermination is the wrong argument - for though Climate Change is a definite matter of concern, the only solution is by all us humans changing our ways of thinking and acting.

Any protest, in my view, should be a call to all (all of us) to put progressively more trust in our Creator and by accordingly changing our ways by being a sympathetic part of what is around us.

Thus, as in Abide With Me:
    Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
    Change and decay in all around I see—
    O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
Our task - surely - is to discover what it is about ourselves that fails to comply with the reason for our creation. Why do we seek more, more, more? Why not instead seek peace, peace, peace? Why not instead seek love, love, love?

The struggle to find the truth about ourselves, and to correct it, does take a lot of self-work. But that is the only solution - not by accusing others nor seeking revenge. Those "others" are extensions of our very selves, so in reality there are no "others" to protest about!

If we believe All Is One and seek peace then we need to live that belief and be the example.

Thank you for reading this.

Sunday, 13 October 2019

You Are Charged To Re-Charge!

Dear Reader,

Well, it seems that the sale of electric cars has gone up quite a bit over the last year or two, but still not (of course) in huge numbers. At a price of at least £35,000 (and usually a lot more), they are out of the reach of most ordinary drivers. But the cost will come down over time.

Their introduction reminds me of a time -  when I was aged between 8 and 11  - when I accompanied my father in school holidays to his employers, a bakery company called Scribbans, for whom he was a roundsman. I'm sure that a child would these days not be allowed to do so - more the pity in my view. His delivery vehicle was usually an electric van (exactly like the Morrison vehicle depicted on the left (below)) and so part of his job was to plug in his vehicle at the end of the day, leaving it overnight to be re-charged. 

So, I got to know about the re-charging of electric vehicles nearly 70 years ago. However, when Dad and I got to his employers' depot there were all manner of vehicles that were used - electric, petrol and also horse-drawn (see pic, right). Therefore, on entering the depot the presence of horses was very obvious - by visually seeing their droppings and the general odour that was present. An experience never to be forgotten, and a small link to nature which is lost on most of the current generation. Though most would now hail the departure of such times, my view is that back then we often had some tie with natural life. Are we not part of nature?

But I will put aside those fond old memories and come back to the underlying topic of electricity. You know, if you browse the Internet for a definition of the word 'electricity' you will get some response like, "Electricity is a form of energy. Electricity is the flow of electrons." But does that give you a real idea of what it is? I can recall obtaining a book on electricity when I was a teenager and eager to know more about it, but in those days perhaps writers were more honest because the book merely said something like "We do not really know what electricity is, other than a flow of electrons". So, science and technology plod on developing incredibly amazing electronic devices, but still without knowing the origin of this power source. They assume that everything has purely a physical explanation. 

This, alas, is typical of us, that once we learn how to use something we immediately apply our materialist viewpoint and turn it into some benefit (we think) for mankind and profitability - a material application - without thanks to the Source that made it available! And also without really knowing whether we are responsibly using that source. We are like children -without wisdom - playing with new toys, and at the behest of those wanting to profit from them. And, because Electricity is simply there at the flick of a switch, we take it for granted, and thereby we are content to let the moguls drill into the ocean beds as well as into the soil to satisfy our seemingly insatiable demands. But at what detriment to Mother Earth?

How the moguls' control business developments is a study in itself. The brilliant scientist Nikola Tesla is famed for his development of alternating current electricity with ideas for making it freely available to all. The electric light bulb was known as far back as the 1920s as being able to last infinitely longer than the life we have become used to. In 1986, my wife and I visited Berne in Switzerland and observed a prototype electric vehicle using direct solar energy. What happened to that idea, that would require no financial charge to access the power source?

If we can have solar-powered sailboat drones that cross oceans, even ultra-light aircraft that circumnavigate the globe, then surely cars can be similarly powered. However, this possibility is down-played, with claims that there are problems to do with the weight of automobiles.

But, as Einstein said, every problem is an opportunity looking for a solution. Most do not seem too interested in finding it. Lightyear One is different.

In all three instances, the powers-that-be have found ways to ensure that such benefits were not allowed to find their way to the public. Profitability - for too long - has been the be and end-all in business, without even wanting to know of the ramifications. And those that play the Stock Market usually have little interest other than how much they can make out of their investment. Investment in armaments has long been seen as bringing a good return, and when a war comes along the investors wring their hands in glee and smoke cigars. We all know what happened to tobacco, where the producing companies make their product for the Asian market with higher nicotine to keep their customers addicted. Palm oil was not long ago seen as a magnificent investment opportunity - but at the cost of the lives of orangutans and great damage to an entire life support system. Who bothers to invest in mangrove swamps? This is another kind of war - such is the male mentality.

Why do we behave like this? Despite the teachings of the great masters we choose to live by what is called "the realities of life". I see it that we have been led to believe that to be cynical about life is the normality that we should abide by. Many say that love is for women, but hasn't it been shown that persons of both sexes have a mix of male and female. Then if males do not want to find out how to balance their two halves it must be because our upbringing has caused us to think otherwise.

The errors of our ways are already very much apparent. The world is crying out for compassion, not greed. Compassion is what will bring hope and purpose, not greed. Compassion is the end-game; not greed.

Developing a philosophical view based on compassion is now essential. Jacob Needleman tells us about compassion, and especially about the power of inquiry within that will help develop that sense of compassion. Click here to listen to a short interview with Needleman.

Thank you for reading this.