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Davison, a consultant and former university professor, spends his time seeking a greater understanding of the world and its people. Their common bonds and commitments are, for him, a continual source of inspiration. He and his wife, Patricia, currently divide their time between Mexico and Arizona.
S I G N P O S T S V O L 2
A ColleCtion of essAys Vol. II
D A V I S O N
SIGN POSTS A COLLECTION OF ESSAYS Volume II .
I Sign Posts: A Collection of Essays. Vol. III Poetry Thoughts and Feelings Book I Thoughts and Feelings Book II Needles from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Seeds from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Pitch from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Humus from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Sawdust from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Sun’s rays through the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Shadows beneath the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Cones from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Pollen sifting from the Ponderosas at Zirahuen Reflections from Lucerne Searching Swamps Questions Time’s Echoes Memories Collections Always Extolling Murmurings Iris and Other Things Pieces of the Journey Through the Swamps of Time iii .Other Books by Don Davison An Outline of a Philosophy of the Consciousness of Truth The Concept of Personhood in the Evolutionary Process of Being The Game of Life: A Player’s Manual for Executives and Others Sign Posts: A Collection of Essays. Vol.
SIGN POSTS A COLLECTION OF ESSAYS Volume II Don Davison v .
Cover photo and author photo by Patricia Davison Special thanks to Louella Holter. and to Tina Rosio. except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and review. from W. Published 2010 Printed in the United States of America ISBN 978-0-9774039-4-3 No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission.Zirahuen Phoenix.com ©2010 by Zirahuen All rights reserved. vi .com DrDavison@pathtotheself. AZ pathtotheself.
Again – To Patricia. vii . for everything.
Water is one of the most essential attributes of the planet Earth. Davison’s collections of poetry all end with “Finding Pieces.All of Don Davison’s books have water on their covers. without it. where did the rules for the Game of Life come from? They come from many places and different times.” Many of you have asked. life as we know it would not exist. It deserves our most considered attention. Good hunting! viii .
Artists! The Mediation of Reality The Past – Present – and Future The Person Wars of the Moment What Is Right? An Agenda for Us All The United Nations xiii 1 7 11 13 23 37 43 49 53 61 67 79 85 91 95 ix .CONTENTS OF PREVIOUS VOLUME SIGN POSTS I Preface A Human Face – A Human Touch A New Point of Departure A Word About Politics Grow Up. America! Immigration – A Brief History Iraq – The Last War Self-Love Thank You.
CONTENTS OF THIS VOLUME SIGN POSTS II Preface Vignette Sufficient Security It’s Free! The Ethics of Politics: An Oxymoron or Truth? Democratic Oversight Health Care Our Current Moment A Question for Our Times We Need Enough Truth to Know the Truth Procedural Questions Understanding Our Current Moment Standpoints and a Methodology for Dealing With Postmodern Perspectives Damn It! I’ve Had Enough! Take Courage. America! How Much Is Too Much? The Truth – Elections –and the Health of a Nation A Humanistic Manifesto Splash A Beacon on a Hill xi xiii 1 3 7 11 17 19 33 39 41 45 47 53 57 61 69 75 81 85 87 .
All Hands on Deck! Learning to Die Well My Current Status Is … A Direction 89 93 97 99 xii .
Part 1 Fear. Facts. and People The Gift Obama Got Most of It Wrong The Paparazzi A Streaming The Greatest Challenge of Our Time.CONTENTS OF SIGN POSTS III Preface While We Are At It: Health Care 2.0 Kudos and Thank Yous Economics 101 Time. Place. Part 2 History Does Not Run Backwards! xiii 1 7 9 15 19 23 27 31 35 45 49 55 57 65 67 75 77 81 xiii . and Ideologies The Coming Revolt Thinking Matters Globalization We The People Trust Let Me Speak! The Greatest Challenge of Our Time.
Cultural Blinders Human Life Is a Moving Force Come to the Party! A Visit with the Dancing Muse Bite the Bullet! 83 89 93 99 101 xiv .
If not otherwise noted. These and other materials are marked with an asterisk. xv . Where I feel it is appropriate. dear reader. these essays are intended to help “flesh out” various themes and topics found in my poetry. such inclusions are my own work. I might refer you.AUTHOR’S NOTE I am primarily a poet. to a particular poem that further elucidates certain thoughts or sentiments.
In the following working pieces called “postings.PREFACE Sign Posts are collections of essays written to shed some light on my personal thinking.” in Sign Posts I). We must live with the awareness that a sanctifying process is always underway” (from “A Word About Politics. xvii . and respect while we dedicate ourselves to growth as self and circumstances change. These pieces will be augmented with the new and intriguing that I find as I continue to discover the richness of the human garden and the unfathomable depths of the human experience. care.” I will attempt to share some of the fundamental points of departure that have guided my thinking and stimulated my searching in my various fields of interest. Over the years. we must act in love (in that Frommian manner: with an active concern for all life and growth) by operating and proceeding with knowledge. responsibility. students and others have asked that I write some small pieces on what I felt about this or that. I believe that “as a species.
The Colonel says.” “Who waits upon the truth and acts accordingly?” “He doesn’t. “A possible deserter is being used by the enemy. he was young.” “We did not follow our gut instincts.” The “Real Story” comes to light.VIGNETTE Take 1 Take 2 Take 3 Take 4 Take 5 Take 6 Take 7 Take 8 Take 9 Take 10 Take 11 Take 12 Take 13 Take 14 “Soldier Captured!” Yes / No / I do not know. arrogant.” “Well. naïve. as well as intelligent and charismatic—for those who could be fooled. He was available for only one term. When we make mistakes we don’t offer excuses. nor do we run ahead.” The General says. All things move. Comment and pictures scatter across the media of the day. “The … the Commander-in-chief wants you dressed down. Some voted their feelings.” “We voted for him and that is what we got. We need to honestly pursue any intentional wrongdoing with the law of the land. or create new laws for a new age.” “This Nation isn’t perfect—just the best thing going. yet reasoned response to correct the sins of the past and of the present. It won’t happen again. “Something is wrong here. pushing solutions that aren’t.” .” “This country needs a passionate.
Take 15 “When the sleeping giant awoke and looked at the winds of truth gently wafting from a Bill of Rights and a Constitution birthed by the forge of time and circumstance. With prudence and patience. We will hold the helm and right the course. “Change the course to that sacred bond of truth! Turn the politicians who are less than (and not enough) out to pasture. the smithy hammered out a democratic call. we will regain our vision and our understanding of that Godgiven gift of freedom—freedom to be honest with ourselves and every brother and sister who dreams with hope.” 2 .
probablys. and maybes. the issue is that the fundamental 3 . Human behavior is just that: human. This is growth as an opportunity to integrate actual with potential in the realm of the possible. This is not the issue. The evolution of different forms of government testifies to the fact that we have sought. and death.SUFFICIENT SECURITY “Stand and be recognized!” has been a sentry call from time immemorial. Was it justified? Was it needed? Did it serve a vital function? The answer is yes. an appropriate form for most of humanity. nor protection. With all of the essential attributes of yeses. we must take additional measures to insure some modicum of decorum. What is needed. is a form of government that recognizes essential freedoms while offering a measure of stability that gives one the opportunity to plan. Human life presents an ongoing theater of opportunities to complement the seasons of births. changes. projects that will benefit a large number of individuals. most of the time. As the sheer numbers of individuals on the planet increase. for the most part. and yes again. with sufficient time and resources. and are still searching for. We need periods of peace where resources can be dedicated to the long-term solution of the human dilemma: Life is change as growth. Capricious governmental behaviors offer scant tranquility. we have lived for eons with each other. The fundamental trajectory of life is well known and very well understood. yes.
that. Yet we know that considering forever places some. “Not me! Not now! Not ever!” A calmer. offended.rights of any given individual. we must develop ways of doing and moving that will allow us to respond to threats to our own biology and the biology of others. “What’s up? What do you need?” 4 . It seems. Who are you. the perennial call of one to the other. really? This does not seem to be an inordinate need or an inordinate request. The current challenge seems to be to own what we sincerely believe to be the truth as soon as we are aware of what that truth is presenting to us. irrational soul might say. In the human realm.” To this. or rabidly responsive to this simple request? A raging. we offer Yes / No / I don’t know. This actually has become an imperative. So to use the operative phrase: “Stand and be recognized!” This seems to have been and still seems to be. not knowingly abrogated by that individual. We have come to call ourselves the considering being. always deserve our utmost attention. and anything else that seems relevant.” For the cynics we will add a very old idea that has proven only partially successful: “An eye for an eye. that the only universally recognized law of human existence is “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. In the current global implosion of individuals. reasonable mind would say. in our current understanding of the human condition. at risk. action must be predicated with some measure of reflection: It all depends on this. Why would anyone be put off. if not all. Nature’s continual push and pull precludes a standing still that lasts too long.
and yet we are all charged. Our understanding can be impaired under conditions of fear. Not to wax philosophic here—it could be said that few really know who they are. to some degree.A brief comment on fear-induced reasoning: This is not in anyone’s best interest. A few may even believe that they have no need to know. It could even be said that the seemingly unending list of possible fears in the disconnected/connected postmodern world is a travesty that exerts an inhibiting effect on most rational behaviors. We don’t see sufficient data. The “world” is. We all cannot. and the relationships that can possibly ensue from encounters are not integrated very well. More of us will be known. it could be safely said. 5 . and will always be as it is. It must be employed as a matter of course in every endeavor from crossing the street to walking across a dimly lighted parking lot. The other side of the fear coin is prudence. with the protection of the whole. and should not. was. there are inherent dangers that we must all take into consideration when we move about and share our presence with others. We are rapidly entering the age of the common use of biometrics to identify each and every one of us. Of this. It may also be true that those who think they know who we are may not have a clue. and some are just not suited. It also does not go without saying that circumspection has served the species well. some are ill disposed in other ways. That is to say. be warriors. This should not be a frightening addition to our reality—to know who we are and to know who others are can be an imperative. Some are ill tempered. we are not suffering an abundance. Most of us are already in some way known. and fewer still take the time to attempt much discovery.
Mutual expectations can breed anticipations that give a measure of freedom to everyone. Rules and regulations make better relationships. “Stand and be willing to be recognized!” 6 . ever increasing.There is an overriding. and to train others to screen this information tsunami so that we can access what is truly important and eliminate that which is harmful. new reality presenting itself to more and more members of the human family. The inundation with information requires that we take steps to discipline ourselves in our search for new knowledge. There is a real benefit to a society governed by laws.
perhaps it is time for some rational debate. we crave that “something for nothing. spiritual. emotional. rewards. and some action concerning current marketing practices: “Free this. Given the preponderance of this fact. Nothing is free! Although we are a species that thrives on hope. connections. “Interest-free for …” The above are all examples of the absolute idiocy of an age. dependencies. life and its concomitant understandings can eventually present a realization: Life is not free.“IT’S FREE!” “Buy one. Free that. knowledge used / abused.” We live in an age that demands an increased effort focused on growth and change. although a gift. corruptions. in the face of history—our own and that of others—that we maintain some abstract ephemeral longing for some respite. get one free!” “Free when you order …” “Free with the purchase of …” “Three months free …!” “Free rent!” And that most insidious. costs something. The greater truth seems to be. knowledge gained. Free whatever. Over time the proverbial truth rings forth—Nothing is free. physical negative of truth? With some maturity. Yet at some level. Choices must and will be made. Effort must and will be expended. Life.” Is this a piece of some mental. addictions. We struggle and most of us gain a measure 7 . and the list goes on. something free. we are not stupid. New technologies offer manifold rewards: time saved.
” Fundamental laws of efficiency prevail over time—in this case. the use of new technologies. is now and forever shall be—for us. we hunt for the mythical pot of gold at the end of every rainbow. Some things take more time. was not a simple task. or four. consuming. There are fundamentals that say. sharing. byways. airways. how is it that in harboring hope’s penchant for something free. “Hold the course. we are also called upon to do things differently. or the cargo. we lose sight of the most profound and personal truth of all—our own presence and our own desire to manifest our own freedom demands a reciprocal: responsibility? While maintaining our existence. why do we insist upon driving an automobile while texting nonsense (and other things) to anyone? Messages of “Sales at the mall!” and elsewhere. of things hardly needed or affordable for many—in the light of reflective wisdom—are hardly a priority.of satisfaction as we adapt (with age there is sometimes a prudence that dictates a mature reflection) to our new circumstance. Still. So tell me now. cul-de-sacs. Mirror the mysteries of the Divine.. human time. That does not mean that evolution’s greatest gift—adaptability—does not reign supreme. and what have you. we are led to understand that life itself manifests in itself another truism of the ages: As it was in the beginning. So tell me. we search blindly along well-traveled pathways. Driving a wagon with two-up. the wagon. using. As we integrate the many new ways of creating. Scurrying about. 8 . most of us seem to want to know—and continue on our merry way. Follow the way. or six. some things less. Going too fast was not in the best interest of the driver. In the great simplicity of wisdom. facilitating. etc. for something free. the horses.
Now. All these have become the mantras of the many. We attempt some form of safe. we “govern” others and ourselves through mutual consent. no turning of heads as we speed through intersections. meanwhile leaving those of us in the middle alone to malign ourselves and others. just think of all those nonsensical entries on the Internet—millions of hours of wasted time scrolling down to the bottom of the page (now isn’t that a useless term for most Internet information?) to find what we should have already known. over or under protection of the elderly are our current pastimes. why is it that we lean to the left. Days. Finally. and we never seem to get it quite right. Just think of the time saved. So. slowly. we carry on as if life itself were free. We should develop a small piece of legislation that has only one purpose—now wouldn’t that be novel? Let us initiate a practice that prohibits the tacking on of irrelevant bits and pieces of other porky things to the bill whose intent is solely to prohibit the use of the word “free” in advertising. No skipped heartbeats as we try to decipher the small letters at the bottom of anything. needing not one minute of our considered effort. other products. Over or under protection of the children. months of life saved.Risking life and limb (ours and others). I think it is time for us to exercise some common sense as it pertains to our common purpose: that of living our own lives and accepting the responsibilities that go along with all the relationships predicated on our presence. So we pass laws concerning the age of responsibility. we lean to the right. ordered life. weeks. we can attempt some reasoned activity to separate personal bias from those of us who need a different access. Wouldn’t that be nice? 9 . when it comes to managing advertising. and a different dosage.
With the saved wages, in no time we could not only pay off the national debt, we could actually set something aside for a rainy day. We could thereby create another postmodern novelty: savings! We should initiate an awareness promotion and all of us should participate in actions that bring to the public stage that golden fact: Nothing is free! Imagine resurrecting Huxley’s birds, chirping on the radio, the television, or gently spoken from cell phones and our laptops: “Nothing is free!” Let’s raise a new consciousness level that would put anyone using the word “free” in an advertising sense into a category of profound stupidity. We would all know nothing is free! Outlaw the use of that one little word, so sacred, so important—in the word freedom—from advertising! Freedom means a personal and communal opportunity to be all that we can be as we mature into our space and time. We want us all to be willing and able to assume responsibility for our own actions and to assist the children in their maturation in the understanding of the obligations of freedom. The word “freedom” is much too valuable to be maligned by the crafty, the snide, the ruthless, and the thieves of the present. Pass this simple law and help set the stage for us to save future generations from such time consumption, danger, and waste of precious human resources.
THE ETHICS OF POLITICS: AN OXYMORON OR TRUTH? There is upon us a new age, an age of great transparency of information, information that births new knowledge. There has always been a lag time between the two fraternal moments of information and knowledge. This time around, as always, there is an inherent attribute of the one that births the other. Never have so many had so much to say and are saying it. For the first time in the history of the species, any person who has a question (and knows a person who knows another who has access to the Internet) can type it into a search engine and, most of the time, get an answer. Great fields of common knowledge and fields on the fringes of the mainstream are right there at our fingertips. Romantic poets wrote much about the reciprocity of touch. It is now possible to touch the Noosphere* and to be touched back. Questions The question now is this: Have we learned to be gentle and strong at the same time? What is a person anyway? Could we be rational social animals, fabricators and destroyers, freedom seekers, a maker of symbols, soul-seeking sentient beings? I believe we could say that this might be a good working definition.
Teilhard de Chardin introduced this term in his book The Phenomenon of Man. 11
In the blending of all of this, we have the makings of civilizations—the sifting and winnowing of values, cultures and technology—the to-do-for—the with, the why of the species. The need is and has always been to survive as a person. What does this mean? What is really needed? What belief systems can support the advancement of the species, the development of humankind? Pieces of the Story Time and place—to live and to die—and to do both well—have been those gifts of the past to the present. The task has always been to sort out the accumulation of history’s efforts. This is done with the wisdom of reflection, to parse the accomplishments and the vagaries of the development of civilizations. Tribal we were; tribal we still are. Familial / local / regional / continental / global, we have become. We have gone to war and we have made peace. Yet take and slaughter never quite got it all done. Brawn over brains has never had the upper hand since we crossed the threshold of reason. The how and why of it all, as well as ties to one another, says it all. For the most part, “Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you” was the quintessential modus operandi. At a deep level, we are a caring kind. We could not forever hate the sameness of ourselves. It is true that bloody battles were fought, that destruction took place. That conquests happened there is no doubt, and yet, in all of this, there is the trail of the fact that there were always left greater numbers of creators than destroyers. We organized and we created cultures. We gave birth to music and art, to agriculture and architecture, to wars and to peace and everything in between, including all the accompanying inventions and discussions, as well as the maintaining that goes with
everything. We have done it all while circumnavigating and populating the globe, and finally, now, we have stepped toward the stars. Perceptions of Self and Truth How has this journey affected the psyche of the species? From myth and legend, much still with us, we have moved through theology and philosophy, from farmer to engineer, from warrior to diplomat, and in all of this, we have continued to try to understand our presence in our time. To understand a purpose, an intent, a melding of the many into a recognition of the presence of the hominid on a globe, has been an omnipresent emergency. We have moved from fire to nuclear energy, we have touched each other in sickness and in health, in births and in deaths. We have crossed every bridge of human behavior and have settled, for the most part, on that which complements our kind. So now, where is it that we stand in our foyer of a new age? Haves and have-nots, Stone Age and postmodern, all melting into rap, tee-shirts, and blue jeans, incessantly texting and sending the spoken word along with images to the four corners of the planet. Now who is in charge of space? (From whence comes the beaming of the messages?) What laws govern our behavior? What truths and fictions feed our current understanding? Master / slave / serf, we’ve been them all, semi-independent to dependent, we have always needed one another. History is a record of how well we have made this journey from dependent to independent and back to dependent. Information and its applications have always been the key ingredients in our relationships, in our survival.
The Current Moment So—here we are now, with global accords and global economics. Where is the person of the moment? The grand truth is that we all need each other in our dance from semi-independent to dependent and back to semi-independent, from the knowledge gathered to its applications. These fluctuations give us freedom and restraint, repose and exhilaration. These are all essential attributes of our personhood. It is only in the recognition of self in the other that we truly honor our own responsibility to ourself and our Maker. History has played with the minds of us all. We have suffered from illusions to disillusions. We have watched neighbors become successful or perish. The politics of power have been benevolent and violent. In the long course of events, many of us have evolved into creatures that have become accustomed to saying, “Give me!” “I deserve!” while waiting for something or someone to come our way. In the wake of our waiting, leaders and politicians have said, “It costs too much,” or “It is sorely needed.” Then, “It isn’t needed so much, well—really not at all.” In their lying and their pandering for self-interests and power, they have betrayed the fundamental truths of our mutual presence. Governments evolved primarily to protect the individual members of a group, any group. (Read minorities—all of them now so politically correct. And yet we must remember that history does not run backwards.) Our arguments of the day go from individual rights to group rights; neither would exist without the other. Nor would cancers exist without hosts, it is prudent to recall. Truths to be “owned” must be lived.
Technology and a new age have spawned vast crowds of lecherous lookers and watchers. They have become a burden on the doers. Our educational systems have created a herd mentality, branded to the nth degree. Too few have any concept of where it all comes from, and how it gets there, much less how important it is—or isn’t. The insidiousness of the power of information wielded by a few (think the self-serving executive, legislative, judicial branches of government, investment houses, banks, corporate boards, labor unions, errant religions, bureaucracies of any kind, and biased media) illustrates the potential of “the negative of the photograph.” Where two or more are gathered in their name … can be a reciprocal that is not in the best interest of the species. Ignorance and avarice live well in the implosion of the world’s people, where so many can communicate in the anonymity of the fog from an electronic mist. In the realm of being, the first fundamental is—all is touch. And that it is and was sacred there is no doubt—for those who in their synthesizing of knowledge have gained a measure of wisdom. A sin against anything is first against self and then others. Where are we now in accumulated wisdom and the new transparency offered by the information technology of thought / word / and deed swirling about us all? It has been said, “No person saves another; no person can pay another’s debt.” What are we attempting to do? Who cannot see the nonsense of our current efforts?
That there is a path, that there always has been a path followed by the hominid, is obvious in the arc of history. Current examples abound—Doctors without Borders, the Heifer Foundation, and myriad others, truly every Samaritan. The task of the new age is to recognize that from the fount of self, we reach out and touch our surrounds, all of it. This must be done with the utmost knowledge, care, responsibility, and respect. To do less than we are able is to lie, to self, to others, and to our God.
DEMOCRATIC OVERSIGHT Democratic regulations are those mutually agreed upon by most of us, not by a few power-hungry, career-centered politicians who use lobbyists to write noxious and copious bills. A sufficient number of us must own pronouncements that come as legal constraints to us all, or they have no meaning at all. They must also be structured in such a way that flexibility is an inherent aspect of keeping pressure on the real—mirroring Nature’s existential focus on what works now. This would provide private enterprise (we must always start with a part of the whole) with an opportunity to utilize monetary and technological strategies that are feasible and that follow and direct markets that eventually, in their sifting and winnowing, become beneficial to us all. These must be markets governed by prudence and wisdom. Nothing that grows too fast, or in soil too thin, can sustain itself. Fiscal integrity is essential to the well being of any nation. We have wobbled on and off course long enough. Seldom do we take sufficient time to order priorities, much less restrain the inherent avarice of the public dole. The price of each and every vote must be writ large in the character and history of a nation. This cannot be done unless sufficient time and energy is spent in maintaining an awareness of what character is and must be, as well as an understanding of the trail of our communal commitments. An ownership of our history forces upon us an awareness of the essential ingredients of our personal and national conscience. The “Think, Say, Do” of our
active participation in our own well being must always be the template to which we size ourselves and our nation’s purpose for being. 18 .
free to be informed and careful. and some are unhealthy because they choose to ignore the wisdom of the day.” Welcome to HC American style. healthy people are happy. mentally. and spirituallly. free to be ignorant and proud of it. We have the full spectrum of individuals.HEALTH CARE With all of the attention on health care (HC). really? We have the buffs and the stay fitters. I have been asking myself. we currently have both public and private programs of HC maintenance. It is true that there are those who choose not to avail 19 . productive sorts and those who are unhealthy are less happy and less productive. we have the healthy and the sick—physically. yet the fact remains that there are opportunities to have and to receive HC in most areas of the country. we have the health nuts. Some Background In all of this. That HC is available across the full spectrum of society is hotly debated. We have them all! The fact is that those who are healthy enjoy their health. Those who lack HC in every way are extremely rare. and we have the “don’t give a damners. we have the slovenly and the careless. what is HC. As a general rule. There is an overarching reality here: some people who are not healthy are not healthy through no fault of their own. Those who are not healthy are not happy about it. because they actively participate in their own well-being and others are just blessed with good health.
Yet the statement of the cynic always has a measure of truth. We have finally learned. In addition to the new “HC tips of the day” and the new discoveries of the moment. it all depends. or who lack sufficient financial resources to participate in our current system. We need to make this a personal and national priority.” It does not have to be that way and it is within our collective power to do something about it. that 20 . The facts of the matter are important. another approach must be taken. both personal and communal. with their focus on. In a culture that touts freedom. including the advents of the great world religions. that some utilize their wherewithal to take advantage of HC and some do not. to wars ad nauseam and finally to an awareness of the sameness of the species.themselves. This fact deserves a manifold response by the society in which we all live. in the course of human events. The blood of every member is red. “That’s just the way it is and the way it will always be. For those who have the desire and for whatever reason don’t participate in HC.” We have moved from that productive pragmatism to “well. and they must be transparent enough to provide any HC entity with sufficient information to apply the laws of the day and the wisdom of the moment. no eat. though. we need continual HC information of all kinds. Those who choose not to participate are a real number. compassion. and the preponderance must be preventative and maintenance information. We have come. The fact remains. Our challenge is to target the social whole with sufficient information that allows for some understanding of the benefits of HC. for the most part. along with fraud protection. the closer we come to the adage “no work. some cynics say.” The greater truth is that all people are not equally endowed and we must consider the whole picture. among other things. The farther back in history we go.
To know something carries with it the responsibility of that knowledge. However. there are consequences—two strikes and you are on your own sounds about right. Most of us are now aware that all people. and the pursuit of happiness. Nature never sleeps. To those who worry about this—keep your nose clean! With our current understanding of the organic. we now know that we must be hypervigilant.we are the same. do it! If you don’t. and everyone’s. are no less so. 21 . This is not a game. we are a caring species. liberty. and have always been. This is where we are today: for the most part. Our Current Circumstance So in the face of “it all.” what is HC today and whose health care are we speaking of? We are. as a part. That there are always mitigating circumstances is a given. One of the beauties of our current age is that we can now keep track of each other. If you choose to be intransigent. As with all things. they start with themselves in some context. The richness of creation is a marvel and we. yours. speaking of mine. With this awareness has also come a measure of equanimity and some magnanimity. you can fend for yourself. is entitled—in that natural sense—to basic human rights: life. and the world everywhere runs 24/7. we are always a part of something else. That is not to say that we all have the same sense of responsibility for self and others. every individual. the fact remains that if you can take care of yourself. Most individuals have the ability to change their thinking and consequently their actions. Bounded within and without. This obviously has pluses and minuses.
or to credit. Being’s mandate is to be. This fact has given birth to public health. that have. aptitude. yet there are insufficient laurels. blessings. For the most part. with all of the concomitants. and spiritual. color. and disposition. Language really does say most of it. another. as far as you are able. I am I.” is indeed ours. is only the beginning of the story. bounded by the unbounded of our defining quadrant. we are our major concern. they seek their hosts. This is an act of essential pride! Yet as far as this goes it is true. that unless we belong to ourselves. so too is everything else. So where do we start in our unending series of ones and others? Thomas Aquinas reminds us of the absurdity of an infinite regression of ones to blame. accompany us all. physical. The organic presents a never-ending opportunity to know and to care. we are nothing. For us. emotional. There are more than six billion of us on the planet. as far as I am able. and others. to be responsible for and to respect the all. We are all of us in every attribute of shape. and curses. and the other are a part of our forever. we lay plans for our continued presence (we think an important ingredient) in the soup. The answer to the question “Whose health?” is mine. make of ourselves what we are able. 22 . The accumulation of knowledge dictates an ownership of responsibility that is personal and societal.Yet questions of one. we dispose of something. where two or more of us are gathered. we have done this well. This. In this soup of circumstances. My waste and yours affect us. we are no different. You are you. for me and by me. One’s awareness of one’s presence—the existential moment— our “now. the intellectual. The truth is that we are not nothing. and as human beings. those circumstances. and still do. He is right. Infectious diseases are just that. however. and yours for you and by you. Your health and mine are intimately entwined.
I have divided our focus into three parts with three attributes: All existing HC is personal. 23 . That it begins with the individual (once they know and can do) is also beyond doubt. spending. Information must flow openly to everyone. HC is personal and communal and the extent of our responsibility is global. communal. All HC is maintenance. from which we can see more clearly the part and the whole. is to present what may appear to be complex in an understandable way—it is intended to simplify. it belongs to the recipient. and picking up the pieces. That HC is everyone’s responsibility is beyond doubt. they must do something with it. To do this. depending upon the degree to which they are able to own it. (This is not the case for children.) HC is predicated on a necessity by those who know and can do for themselves. All HC is complementary. given what we know. All of this takes place under the overarching facts of growth change and the application of old and new knowledge.Therefore. We must share all that we know as soon as we know it. and money. and existential—a combination of natural needs and the needs resulting from Nature’s capricious intervention. avoidance. HC also takes place in an environ of economics—the making. and saving of time. this is covered further on in the discussion. energy. The purpose of creating this template. This means that each knowing-person is responsible for their own health as well as for the health of others. Children move from helpless to responsible. and when it arrives. All of this presupposes a reasonable understanding of history’s cycles and catastrophes. along with the accumulation of wisdom that comes with experience. resources. The following template is an attempt to formulate a perspective from which we can judge HC per se.
To review: (1) HC is to maintain and improve current infrastructure—that which is already here. Therefore. in ways that are beyond our personal and communal ability to respond. our health is ours. not an organization’s. at some time. not a corporation’s. some of which do not have our well being in mind. and certainly not in general 24 . especially in the HC area. HC Providers It is in the great entrepreneurial spirit of the species that HC insurance companies have sprung up and flourished. That is. and resources and the application of old and new knowledge. Nature speaks. and more.HC has always been personal. medicines. hospital stays. Beware of special interests. To do it well demands an attention to purpose seldom seen in government. All of this is predicated over time. Where there is money to be made. and now global with the advent of greater numbers of people virtually covering the entire planet. and unfortunately. not seen in most of the general population. Remember. To regulate them is essential. communal. That this has spawned competing interests. regional. along with doctor visits. until recently. there is the additional need to create and maintain some form of preventative infrastructures and some methods for dealing with problems beyond the personal and communal. (2) HC is to avoid the avoidables. a new beginning. avarice and deception thrive. at times. energy. is a fact. We all need. always more information. to follow the eleventh commandment: Thou shalt not be stupid! (3) Pick up the pieces. to have assistance. This is to reestablish a new point of departure. This has always taken place in some communal circumstance. therapeutic sessions. to be protected. Personal responsibility has always consisted of exuding a selfownership that entails following the three steps outlined above.
the advancements of knowledge and technology have spurred opportunities for specializations. Be forewarned. most of us know that many of us are reasonably healthy now. As HC in general. and to make a profit. and enjoy more that life has to offer” has become the mantra of the day. if more and better. As mentioned. partial truths do not a whole egg make. for the most part. That more is not necessarily good is right only some of the time. to do things better and more efficiently. There are ironies here. All of this can have an upside and a downside—if better. has progressed. demand great expenditures of money. The gadgetry is overwhelming—and it works! The advances in HC technology have been driven by three things: our innate desire to be healthy. If we choose to avail ourselves of the facts. the age we live in can be seductive—it can take us off the course of our own HC maintenance. economists. then better. and in particular. “Spend more and make the economy hum” now seems to be added to the list of HC invectives. Stay the course! In any case. and politicians have all ground away on the statistics of personal and communal wellbeing and its subsequent benefits. “Stay healthy.a government’s responsibility. 25 . That isn’t to say that many of us couldn’t use some tweaking. We understand those moments of quarantines and emergencies. Remember. technological developments. If and only if needs to be employed more often with everything. all of which need some measure of profit to survive and to grow. and growth in many new industries. to be healthy does not. live longer. Actuaries. prognosticators. one only needs to visit a hospital. it can still be better. it has increased in costs. To make this understandable.
the fundamental laws of HC have remained the same. When progress in this pattern is interrupted or postponed. Think derivatives— especially in packaged housing (and HC opportunities?). Even in the face of the socalled miracles of technology and the vast array of available drugs. we know more now than ever before. Two key words come to mind in dealing with HC: prudence and justice. always open and closing. Every individual. our organic template stays relatively the same. and more of us are healthier now than ever before in the history of the species (although we have currently started to identify counterproductive trends). There are more of us. from time immemorial. who in turn shares it with the others of any given 26 . That this is true is obvious. We could list all of the virtues (they must always be present) and yet I think for our purposes—the gaining of sufficient understanding to pursue intelligent discussions and the seeking of reasonable solutions that are organic. The success can be seen in our current circumstance. That prudence and justice are essential in one’s own HC is a fact that needs repeating. With this accumulation of numbers and information. every society has dealt with some form of HC.avarice and deception are alive and well. out of necessity. problems arise that affect the parts and the whole. This starts with a communal responsibility that is imparted to the individual. we mature from completely dependent little creatures to semi-independent individuals. always moving—prudence and justice will put us on the right path to understand HC fundamentals. yet with the advancements in technology. following a reasonable pattern of growth and development that seeks to establish a greater measure of knowledge and responsibility. Let us now consider personal and communal HC. and the sheer numbers of individuals. In the human realm. There is no doubt that justice and prudence matter.
A Player’s Manual for Executives and Others. the parts to the whole. regarding the family of human monsters. Fear has always been our worst enemy. The process imparts to the whole. In the twenty-first century. Conclusion Grounded in some fundamental understanding of this process of life. think AIDS in the early going. See The Game of Life. from shaman to doctor. and that knowledge has continued to grow. (Here. and more of some of the same would be just what the doctor ordered—and what we needed. Live it well! Why does much of our current HC ranting and raving sound like banshees screaming in the wind? If our HC task is the same. personal and communal. this process has gone on since the beginning of time. communal and personal. and this is the way we have always gone about accomplishing HC. and on and on.) HC has always been the human beings’ mandate. Some of the same is not in our best interest. we need to follow Nature’s lead and her intent has not changed: existence is life. How many patients are not good at following instructions? We all need the application of the known research and development. to specialist. what do we really need? The simple answer is still more of the same. knowledge has been shared from the individual to the societal. plus or minus. 27 . we are now faced with the same—although magnified—HC problems. the whole to the parts. Now the question may still linger. To share or not to share knowledge is a choice. then what we need is a refining of what is already here! Life has not changed.group.
to the degree that they are able. Taxes are necessary. Appropriate disposal of all waste. Thieves abound—and they work at night. cheated. Think electronic information and automatic payments. Share information in any and all ways with everyone. We must pay attention all of the time! HC is a 24/7 endeavor! Remember HC is always and has always been everyone’s responsibility. Do it! The list of mandates is simple—the concomitant responsibilities are personal and communal. or circumstances. We must put up and pay attention! Isolate. Stop complaining! Get busy and do your own HC maintenance. and make new ones if necessary. Everything we have going in our current moment is related to these simple mandates. and they have continuously lied. and stolen from their fellow human beings. human and otherwise. or eliminate any and all problematic individuals.Whose responsibility is HC? Everyone’s! That is. The concomitant imperatives to taxes are—waste not. contain. whoever you are. Clean water is essential. That we have been less than honest about several other factors is obvious. prosecute them with the full extent of existing laws. Life stays the same. Remember Caveat emptor!—Buyer beware! Take care of yourself. want not. Hunt for them. That we have personal and communal responsibilities is obvious. Pay an appropriate tax for the 28 . Our methodologies have changed. is essential. so why the senseless screaming bouts? Somewhere along the line some people in some communities have failed in their responsibilities to each other. The health and well-being of each and every one is each and everyone’s responsibility. They don’t just operate 8 to 5. Protect it and provide it to those who do not have it. Our purpose for being should not.
to the canceling or 29 . This activity is a communal obligation and law enforcement must be a priority. Governmental oversight is essential. This should be stringent and well enforced. the solar system. the universe. To live well and to die well is an essential and expected part of human life. Notwithstanding some heroics. Get honest! All life begins on the front end. now! Recommendations The government’s role should be very limited. This must cover everything from the misleading of pricing. are a part. Waste not the resources. Research and development are essential to the informing of the public. of the globe. While there will always be a need for this. Responsible and better care should reduce the need. Be prudent! Be just! Make it all true. life can be a capricious endeavor. Regulations should be clear and to the point. it should be a diminishing need. Harbor it! Nurture it! Stay the course! Share knowledge and resources! Waste not! Be prudent! Be just! Postscript Front End / Back End The heroics of prenatal and postnatal care are inspiring. We must never forget that HC.communal and individual (only when needed). for the most part. Disasters occur. of which we. Let us labor to make it more cost effective. However. is a personal responsibility. mine and yours. For those of us who survive. the funding for the National Institute of Health is a very appropriate activity. 1. we will all age and we will all die. ourselves. to the changing of benefits. Geriatrics is an expanding field of human care. Accidents happen.
Tort reform should be a part of every solution to the governing of any society. The public is forever new and education is always an ongoing endeavor. and resources from one’s most valued possession is a heinous crime and should be punished accordingly. energy. the Attorney General’s office. along with state and local offices. Such reform is obviously of paramount concern in the HC area.refusing of benefits. Fixing what we perceive to be errors of both omission and commission would be a good place to start. All of these programs should continuously synthesize pertinent new information as well as remind the public of common essential behavior. should step up their roles in eliminating fraud and corruption in the entire HC system. 5. or procedures. 2. Specifically. To steal time. are certainly responsible for tremendous waste. Misunderstandings. intended and otherwise. Changing the infrastructure of much of the best HC program in the world is less than prudent. and as well. and Public Service Announcements to inform the general populace should become more efficient and more prevalent. Continued use of the various media. they should be environments that are healthy and environmentally operated and staged. to the coercion of diagnosis. 3. Changing our HC practices certainly doesn’t have to be a trillion-dollar exercise. Punishment should be severe. Our public schools should be places where information is disseminated. 6. through their own volition. 30 . 4.
8. Exclusions by any company are absurd. The facts remain the same. 10. Portability is essential. it is not in the best interests of individuals or of governments. We are all living in the twenty-first century. individuals must be able to continue their HC insurance uninterrupted. I. Any HC policy should be available across state boundaries and even international borders (which may require an additional rider). 31 . please see my essay “Immigration” in Sign Posts: A Collection of Essays. We should stop trying to hold everyone’s hand. This is a nobrainer for HC requirements. pre-existing. We understand that there might be some adjusted rate—but not exclusion. and we are who we are. 9. For those interested in HC and the implications for immigration. we had a pre-existing condition.7. Vol. Aside from the fact that it is not possible. If we had a pre-existing condition. Pre-existing conditions are just that.
” — The Gift of Common Sense The big picture has grown.” “They owe it to us. World wars have been fought when old ideologies were swept away. the haves and have-nots. There are more of us now. We started this formal country (the USA) with a revolution that opened the doors to a new history for humankind.” The great underbelly of the sow of government has created a large constituency that continues to suck on the teats of corruption. The self-perception of a people comprises that grand mixture of history: pomp and circumstance. and some were not. some were just. How long does it take to realize that for far too long there has been a growing general sense of entitlement? “Let the government do it. and the insidiousness of separation by 33 . drudgery and pain. Many are ill equipped and unprepared for this opportunity. largesse. Some wars were hot. some were cold. We are now engaged in another “moment of history” when and where we will be tested to see “whether this nation or any nation” can maintain its commitments to the freedom of its peoples. and expectation. but by the number of hardware stores it has.OUR CURRENT MOMENT “One cannot define a nation or its people by the wranglings of politicians.
That there have always been tensions also is understood. tried to do that which everyone said was impossible.color. crying. the one for the self. religion. an emperor. The great question for us now is “to whom do we owe the grandeur of our individual and communal efforts?” History has forever been a tug of war between the individual and the mass. These tensions have given us what we have come to call freedom and progress. or with or against the other(s). women. there appears to remain. for the most part. race. and now “a government. in that grand mosaic of our efforts. Those of us who have maintained a dependency on some form of tribalism have maintained.” Along with this there is the long history of humankind that is the story of the intrepid soul who wandered where no other had gone. an overarching perception of self that is dependent upon a chief. we have benefited from the bravehearts. by Eric Fromm. and an understanding of the psychology of a people can stand us in good stead as we heroically attempt to garner a better working understanding of our current global perspectives. I cite two classics: Escape from Freedom. Yet the 34 . Studies of a people making the wrong choices are enlightening. We now have more of us living and loving. a lord. a politician. Castes. and dying than ever before in the history of the species. Steven Pinker’s efforts in this area are also helpful. and minorities. laughing. Yet the species has progressed. and the cooperation of the many. In this great bio-dance of the species. That the formula has proven successful in its various guises is understood. or gender. by Octavio Paz. In all of this. and children. There are many. a pathetic view of the fullness of humanity. and The Labyrinth of Solitude. have all suffered. The new freedoms that we have attained are astounding. Human nature is what it is.
35 . contain. Our accumulation of human rights has been well established by history and now also by the first global attempt at the recognition of the oneness of it all—The International Bill of Human Rights. we have a plethora of new technologies that make the practice of good and evil easier. We can coalesce in thought and word. To which of the models of our history can we turn and expect that measure of satisfaction for self and other? How can we go about living on a planet with relatively enclosed space with so many of us and attempt some form of human having-ness that does not infringe on individual rights and the rights of others? Only a dynamic organic model. Any model must grow towards a greater transparency of truth. in our current moment.continued existence of the insidiousness of coercion and suppression are frightening. In our fumbling liberal naïveté. we have yet to find the will to do what needs to be done: isolate. Now. for the caregivers on the one hand and for the snakes of the underbelly of humanity on the other. is a testament to the species’ collective wisdom. Our challenge is to bring these to full fruition in deed. as well as those inherent choices that we would all make for self and—in our magnanimity with integrity—all others. These rights articulate well the needs and desires. Reasoned change must guide us in creating a more inclusive panorama of our potential. will suffice to lay the groundwork for a working model. in the middle of the twentieth century. We are products of evolution. eliminate (that is excise) the cancers of the species. This declaration of human rights. one of the bloodiest in all of human history. one not embedded with molding history and childish nonsense. Waste not the lives of others. but one exuding that integrity of spirit.
in all of this. How stupid the being called human can be. but vertically from everyone. of peripheral nothing-nesses. organizations. To live in ignorance. now. the ones we know are real and yet have chosen to ignore. and that sense of well-being. * Sign Posts: A Collection of Essays. To “run with the crowd” violates that intimate relationship with our God. and yet alongside their efforts we see the degradations of our brothers and our sisters.* Although we are a social animal. we do not have to be a herd animal. Ideologies. all continue. yet are unwilling to live for. is to violate the laws of the universe. To ignore the beauty and efficaciousness of other’s violates His relationship to them.” Paradise begins here. Would it be that the great religions of our kind could stand firm on those postulates that really matter. It has been said. And so. those states of being that bless one and all? We can point to the great world religions that still labor in their chosen commitments to manifest “the good life. a season of our history spoke of “petty thieves”. Our primary obligations are to the truths we espouse. for all of us. wherewithal.” We see their efforts in every corner of the globe. and if they had either to do over again they would do them both differently. The great thefts of time. Petty perceptions of limitations or ritual that don’t matter became and still are reasons to maim and destroy. “People do stupid things when they are living and when they are dying. instead of the pettiness of nonsense. and tools of the trade of humanity are put to good use or to evil. when we have the capacity to grow in knowledge and in love. who is minding the store of humanity’s graces. 1 covers some of these themes.In the course of human events. Vol. we now speak of “world-class thieves” who not only steal horizontally from their own. 36 .
Davison’s other collections of poetry. for the most part. We can educate to the fulfillment of the potential of the human family. Stay the swords. We can be vigilant and efficient in our protection of human rights. 37 . No one is above the laws of the day and it is everyone’s obligation to enforce them. the bombs.” in Always Extolling: A Collection and The Game of Life may be of interest. the rifles. We can punish those who steal anything from anyone. They are holy stuff. We need to be about exercising freedoms and monitoring life with truths that mirror the goodness of our efforts and the challenges of our kind. as well as Dr. We must embrace all life fulfilling and sustaining truths. the grenades. Stop the abhorrent tide of terror! Stop the plunder of the species! Save the children! * * “Polis Mundi. They are the fruits of the garden of paradise. We are better than this. The truth is precisely the opposite.We have no mandate from an existential God that says we should maintain any historical error of perspective.
39 . will we fall victims to the corruption of the soul where the waves of avarice roll across the mainland? Will there finally be more than a few who will say. “Enough of your tasteless shoving of corruption down the throats of your own constituents in your all-out attempt to do it to everyone! Have you finally torn off enough faces?”* * From A Logger’s World: A Collection.A QUESTION FOR OUR TIMES Will the young mixed-puppy of a culture be seduced by the old. So tell me. corrupt behemoths? The electoral jury is hung at 49/51— and tipping to the more-than side of enough—even too much. when the youthful exuberance for the fashionable and the branded-moment wears off.
Indeed. Leadership is a definitive statement of action in 41 . maturing contingents. Lead! Follow! Or get the hell out of the way! These are not idle statements. meaningless drivel is dangerous. much less the well-informed and needy citizens of the world. some youthful participants in the evolutionary (I almost wrote revolutionary) effort do this quite well. These truisms seem to be suffering a lack of understanding in our current national and international dialog. even when most youths possess insufficient knowledge to assume a concomitant responsibility for what they say. This is most certainly demonstrated in the lack of understanding in much of the current media discussions and in much of the political discourse in the parties of choice. This is not an indictment of all youth or the young. are not capable of assuming a mantle of moral leadership for themselves or their own citizenry. it is simply directed to those who lack sufficient understanding to apply a synthesizing logic that allows for a thinking that calls a spade a spade precisely because it is a spade. Wisdom is an essential hallmark of maturity. with no fear of peer or political repercussions.WE NEED ENOUGH TRUTH TO KNOW THE TRUTH Being ignorant and uninformed are attributes of youth. and delivering such messages to intelligent—but evil—individuals around the world gives the impression that some individuals. Ignorant. or a country (in this case the USA).
knowing personal responsibility is always the societal glue that holds the species or the culture together. The essential and critical ingredient to any coherent cultural perspective is education. as a culture—a country—are proceeding down a road without a driver. Either we understand (or we think we do and really don’t) or we do not. Some of them may not even be facts. word. We would be well served by the wisdom of the oak: Live a choice made with an understanding of the opportunities of the present. The purpose of owning current challenges is to inform and to illicit. to confront and navigate the curves and switchbacks of our perilous times. we want well 42 . we. Education is a focused dedication to purpose while employing freedom and choice. If one does not know. You are also responsible. one does not know—and therefore does not have sufficient information to comprehend some of the intricacies of complex and essential interactions of the global human interchange. It is just a fact. A caution here: Be aware of the “facts” of the moment. Go forth and do with a benevolent heart! Life is not simply a question of want. An understanding of some of the past and present is essential—and this cannot be had from a position of not knowing and therefore not being able to understand what to do in the face of the unknown. much less a critical mass of adult sophistication (read sufficient wisdom and fortitude). so that one can understand these statements: You are free. and deed that takes on the obvious challenges of the current historical moment encompassing the entire global circumstance.thought. The fact that some information is dependent upon age and experience does not insult those who have not had sufficient experience. In the case of the latter.
The question is one of knowing what to want and to go about getting our wants with a purpose of intent that exudes integrity to ourselves and our circumstances. we have the need for absolute integrity in every aspect of our thinking. Having said this. the appreciation of life and its totality are of the utmost importance to life itself. we do not need to mire ourselves in discussions about addictions. Hence. does not mean that no one is currently smoking. is not universally recognized as something that no one should be engaged in. for example smoking. As politically incorrect as it may seem to an ignorant (uninformed) mind. and doing. The fact that our current understanding of individual and communal responsibility in the most simple of ways. saying. To many of you financiers and politicians—the tragedy is that some of you thought. It is also prudent to know that a person can be smart without being wise.enough. Overconsumption of anything is a moral issue. do not mirror the communal understanding of the species. The experiential depth of the human journey. at every level and on every page of history. or any other meaningless excuse used to enable someone to continue to do something that is not in any individual and communal best interest. “I’ll just take mine for a while and then I will do something else. 43 .” When did you think there would be a time when you could forget that you were rapists? Decisions concerning the welfare of the human interface derive from a sufficient depth of human experience. is of paramount importance. I must add that at any given moment the human family has points of view that while they may reflect the current wisdom of a given culture. cultural norms. There is no other way. Yet when we see someone smoking.
evolution’s greatest gift. In the triumvirate of thought. word. there is some coincidental benefit in the establishment of an intimate relationship with a synergistic simplicity and our interconnectedness to thought. and in the consequential action that mirrors in deeds the significance of our actions. In our comprehension and our symbolizing of that comprehension. and deed. as it plays out over time. of course.At most levels of the human family and in our now (our current moment). who would be taking substantial risks if their behavior was perceived as a threat to some established. 44 . there is that omnipresent and universal opportunity for most of us to choose to act from a position of necessity with magnanimity. there are those who suffer under repressive regimes. yet coercive control. and deed. word. For most of us there is global information penetration that presents an opportunity to reflect and to choose whatever it is that we truly believe. there is sufficient information available to set the stage for some concomitant reflection/responsibility to ourselves and others.
personally. In Nature’s efficient abundance. you. While walking through the present—watching in an astute fashion. Our challenge is to continue to integrate the knowable and workable. Life is inherently efficient. consumption.PROCEDURAL QUESTIONS The question is. 45 . We must see greed as manifesting an adolescent immaturity—many live life while lacking the cosmopolitan maturity to understand the gift of life as an equanimical gift to each and every person willing to own the responsibility that every human being must ultimately muster. We must mirror that formula. not the rule. communally? We live in a rush to get instead of living to be who and what we really are. Life is definable and understandable. etc. The truth is in Nature’s own crucible. movement. this must be life’s path. In the ideological and the fear-driven individual human life we must learn and practice the art of prudence. we see the benevolent wisdom of it all. Extracting the maximum should be the exception. Between the seeing and understanding there must be reflection before the doing—doing what is right demands a maturity and wisdom that shows a compatibility with the doable now as well as foreseeable periods of time. abuse of time. what happens when greed is driven by fear— led by a lie? What is just for me. that is. There is only honesty with integrity. Greed is defined as too much of anything. a conscious portrait of that which is already there. careful where we put our next step—there are few emergencies in our immediate surrounds.
We must spend/budget from behind—what is already here. 46 . much less survive. We cannot live. with the ignorance of a child. Not ahead of ourselves with what may come to be a false hope.
or some of the current news programs (that could be an oxymoron now. Like. to call some adults idiots. what is the current meaning of the terms human nature. understandable. we could just call them naïve. destroyers. So … should we call them immature? That may offend them also. those may be a little too broad. those who don’t possess sufficient common sense. for the most part. we know that examples run from A to Z. or freedom? Okay. social animals (in some normal sense). We may search in vain for some semblance of recognizable facts. They are individuals who do not possess a sufficiently integrated/cosmopolitan understanding of history. we have a rise in temperature and several expletives may escape from our throats. if we don’t spend too much time looking at the underbelly of humanity and making 47 . in the heat of the moment. Finally. of course) on television or the Internet—we may find that as our minds try to sort out some understanding from the presentation. They are. Perhaps we could expect that most people—but this is no longer true.UNDERSTANDING OUR CURRENT MOMENT When we find ourselves indulging in one of our most primitive pastimes—watching for example the politics of the day. homofabers (that is fabricators). in the interim. freedom seekers. for example. or of simple truths. They may be offended by that. We may even have a tendency. confusion reigns supreme. given some of the people currently serving in public office as well as some “news” reporters—would understand that rational. symbolizers. or soul-seeking sentient beings are. Meanwhile. that is.
we are committing a profound error of judgment. at any given moment.the assumption that calamity reigns supreme. Then we would have to go into Emotional Management. The challenge is to know enough in our attempts at understanding the current moment so as to make decisions in a maturing fashion that would be helpful to most of us. wouldn’t it be nice if there were some politicians who had sufficient courage to write their own bills 48 . but a perspective?) A perspective is a historically generated point of view (understanding) of reality that if we find no longer serviceable. This does not negate the fact that a considerable portion of humanity is not (or that they are deserving of our attention). History can provide very fertile ground for this exercise. Wouldn’t it be nice if one of those Perspective Management groups would make an attempt to “get it right”? Perspective Management—doesn’t that sound like some modification of Anger Management? Wouldn’t a prudent person always be doing perspective management? Gosh. There are many. “¿Qué es todo. we discard and find a new working model. the whole world falling apart is a perspective that is patently false. nor does it mean that there are no issues that deserve our considered attention. Nothing could be further from the truth. That might be something like Personal Management. Human history shows that this has served us well. sino una perspectiva?” (What is everything. and precisely because there are so many. is enjoying their lives. as opposed to expecting someone else to manage us for ourselves along with everything else. we might have a few perspectives that are even totally erroneous.) Ortega y Gasset asked. Indeed. (That could be something like accepting personal responsibility. That might be heartbreaking. Most of humanity. If we look at the daily media fare and conclude that the whole world is collapsing.
in many cases there seems to be insufficient information for the conversants to present their thinking with a rational premise that moves to examples and finally a conclusion based upon some kind of logic understandable to the average person. and as we accomplish some of that task. The current debate. some things have been done with a hidden or personal agenda that certainly hasn’t taken all. or even in our immediate surrounds. to own in some meaningful fashion. Perhaps. So don’t be confused and think the whole world is falling apart all of the time. the fact remains that certainly most of us are doing quite well. must mean that some things have been left out of the discussion. we older folk take a little more time practicing the art of reflection than our younger counterparts. concern ourselves with those less fortunate in some realistic and manageable way. It might be my age. me among them. mishmash of facts. The current problem seems to be this: How. national dialog. I have concluded that we are currently in an age of connected disconnectedness.and then re-read them during their preparation to present them to us. In my travels and my interactions with others. Although we know that one can only reflect on what is already there. to have some rational self-speak as well as to enjoy conversations with those who mean so much to us? There are those of us. I’m a maturing citizen now. shouting matches. It really doesn’t 49 . or worse. are we to gain sufficient understanding of what is happening beyond our immediate sphere. with some fundamental understanding of time and circumstance? Nevertheless. their constituents. or even a sufficient number of facts into consideration. in this current mediated moment. whatever. some things haven’t even been done at all. who feel (and think) that only in dialog can we ascertain what we are attempting to understand—that is. Nature’s mandate is to do who and what we are.
myth. Perhaps that is part of the problem. though.sound like our elected representatives are doing what we expect them to do—that is. we actually bought some of those flimsy things that were advertised with TV’s added mark of approval—I almost wrote the word credibility. In the interest of full disclosure (I must say I’m so excited that I have finally had an opportunity to use that phrase. my generation has lived through the advertising days when the advertisement would include As seen on TV. We all need a base of understanding that can be used as a template through which we see (that means understand) what some of our current exposure to reality (a bit of an issue with the current plethora of “reality shows”) does to us all. as if that was some imprimatur of indisputable truth. It seems to me that many of our younger citizens haven’t had the necessary opportunities to gain sufficient background material. I believe we called it history or social studies. In today’s garden of truth. to represent us. subjects that could help us understand what the human person was all about and what differences may really matter. maybe even most of it. That actually wasn’t so difficult. We had a critical mass of life experience. In addition. I feel like I have joined the ranks of the commentators of the age). We even transferred some our learning to the other content on the screen. in the face of the onslaught. Now that would really be a problem. including an education that worked hard to teach us about the necessities of life. The curriculum of the time gave us some tools that have helped immeasurably over the years. and those (most of them) that didn’t. wouldn’t it? It didn’t take us long to engage our prudence button. and downright lies—lies that can be spread at the speed of “news” 50 . legend. This is essential in forming a frame of reference to be employed in understanding the difficulties life can throw at us.
This situation cannot be in the best interests of the species. has a perception of time. We also begin. if we are led to believe that we can live in an eternal now. There is no free lunch was a saying of the day. we will be short-changed in our abilities to parse really meaningful truths from the rush of fabricated “presents.and the speed of “live”—we must sense some measure of concern. As our field of perception expands. there seems to be a growing number of individuals who don’t seem to have an understanding of the where and the how of things. They seem to be sorely missing from the news venues of our current moment. We recognize that some individuals may not be 51 . We. at a very early age.” The concepts of time and if/then lead us to another perception of reality: All things are created by something or someone. We all need to learn and to care so that we can become responsible and respectful. Logic and ethics were staples and were an integral part of our curriculum. even simple things like Popsicle sticks. Even though—it (the knowledge of this and that)—exists somewhere supposedly on the Internet. we really know that there is no substitute for a real human presence enjoyed over a sufficiently lengthy period of time. “Free” in the advertising arena does not exist. we begin to understand the meaning of “if/then. In our current electronically mediated environment. those of us with some age. it cannot provide one with all that there is to know. when our bodies and our minds are sufficiently mature. to assume a sense of personal responsibility. For most of us there is an absolute need to know.” Now although the phrase “the Eternal Now” can have theological implications that may bear a measure of scrutiny. know that nothing just pops up and is just there for our enjoyment. It is helpful to note that the human person. In our current moment.
or. I did use the word judge. The rest of us. however. do we use exactly right often enough in an attempt to gloss over irreconcilable differences? Have we crossed the Rubicon to a land where there are no irreconcilable differences.able to assume a personal responsibility. How is it that we have come to an age that resembles at times (too often I think) absolute relativism? Does anyone recognize a contradiction in terms anymore. a perplexing land in which everything is relative? An understanding of how we arrived at any given place and time is indispensable to the well-being of us all. Prudence is a virtue. their well-being then becomes a social obligation. for those of you who have forgotten some of the foundational building blocks of human history. Yes. 52 . Sharing essential information without some aggrieved baggage or hypothetical nirvana as a political agenda would also be helpful for us all. Judgment is the common denominator of prudence. are in need of facts with which to govern our own behavior and judge the behavior of others.
or rather was there and is now here for this cycle of our forever. faux pas moments executed with aplomb. It’s all there. lies both told and left unsaid. were true. even believed. those that present themselves with such vigor and passion many times stumble and adopt perspectives that are not in their best interests. It is from these that we must hunt for new facts—facts that will add new knowledge and dispel cherished “truths”—truths that we thought. and striking moments of heroism. or perhaps I should say are lodged. yet I can’t help but feel that in these tumultuous times. those points of departure—many hard won—that form a perspective upon which our current standpoints stand.STANDPOINTS AND A METHODOLOGY FOR DEALING WITH POSTMODERN PERSPECTIVES As cultures well up from their pasts and wrestle with the vagaries of the present. This is all understood. of course. The audio and video trails are plentiful and most are precise. That is to say in this imploding. We have examples of positions taken or defended. This all takes place as the historical and actual accumulation of facts. let me say that we now have a very different level of technological wherewithal with which to mine the past and present. Before we enter upon that journey. exploding electronic universe. we need to hearken back to the pondering of our past. 53 .
54 . This may historically be true. come to realize that we must spend sufficient time sifting and winnowing truths from fiction. we will always be at odds with some of her efforts. This has not been an especially easy task. animals (human and otherwise). Sometimes they have succeeded in eradicating a few here. manifests our presence as a linear movement. under these circumstances. We are still here and we are many. Germs. In the face of these “facts” I am going to boldly put forward a point of view. Yet. as we have come to understand it. a standpoint. Some are so strongly held that we feel that we are willing to accept and even face death in order to maintain our commitments to them. Perhaps some will feel a need to be averse to that conclusion. a few there. or in some cases quite a few here and many there. Yet our current presence stands as a testimony to our success. In addition. in all of these yeses and nos. Examples abound of our intransigence over the millennia. a belief. I have concluded that we must have an existential mentality to confront existential threats. climates.The trail of our journey. our current cultures manifest in our many inventions and noble truths that we are prodigious in our efforts and in our commitments to ideals. We have. viruses. We are at war and have been at war with some forms of nature since the beginnings of time. I say to them. It has been written that we may even need the opportunity to face death (especially in war) in order to maintain the spiritedness of our humanity. as Nature does not sleep. that has served me well and that I feel would also serve others well. So should we assume that war. have all had their chance. would of necessity forever shadow our days? Perhaps in some form this is true.
and this need will extend into a forever future.Our attention to this fact. This seeking will engender a passion for an awareness of our participation in our surroundings that efficiently manifests itself as a reciprocal well-beingness for the species and the rest of the planet. The current examples of discourse that lack any form of human logic are astounding. the police. and as our newest efforts seem to confirm. there is an eternal need for the expression of our spirit. the organic is our home and our battlefield. Our new point of view. or rather. such as the military. we could say that many of us currently have perspectives that are at odds with our best interests. athletes. the misguided. Therefore. deviants. and the list goes on. Indeed. given these circumstances. which I feel manifests itself as a form of religion. and sociopaths that could provide (in our need to maintain our understanding and consequently our vigilance) the necessary outlet for humanity’s essential megalothymia. alive in the entire untiring universe. if reasoned dialog is an essential attribute to being human. We will need those who are willing to rise to very impassioned careers. demands that we maintain an evervigilant standpoint concerning our presence in every environment in order to understand and combat those aspects of nature that do not complement human life. if this is true. will occupy a forever place in our constellations of involvements. there is a critical mass of ordinary criminals. with our very survival. 55 . social and health care professionals. Nature is alive here locally. However. These careers will inspire others to seek participation in their own excellence. are we to understand some of this current blabbering? Given the number of people currently living on the planet. How.
and because we will periodically fail. A new “secular” religion. They will cease to have been ostracized. this will become the new and final religion—a religion that will exude an integrity of being whose ROI (return on investment) will not be some monetary involvement. we will concomitantly birth a personal and communal forgiveness. care.” across the vastness of the heavens. of all kinds of combinations of human effort. 56 .The mediation of these careers has historically given birth to a plethora of songs. plays. manifesting our humanness in love. they will all be equally striving to manifest their personal best at whatever has come to move their souls. Our secular commitments will become a shining star that will illuminate our human footprints as we make our way. Exposure to these thymic levels of human heroics has and will continue to stimulate healthy personal growth and development. and respect. if we must seek a term. as far as we are humanly able.” more and more individuals will come to believe that the only way to survive and to reap the harvest of a “good life” will be to maintain a commitment to an absolute form of personal integrity. This will create a “natural” reciprocity of mutual well-being. and finally now a wireless broadcast television with shows that have inspired generations upon generations of individuals to demonstrate care at levels that are truly heroic. the less-thans. as they have all been exposed to the magic of a mediated message. will have become one side of that eternal coin of truth. but one’s own truly heroic path that births the depths of each and every one’s personal best. This natural well-being will preclude any need to enter wars for the masses. music. In addition. As this focus of human effort becomes a “path. with “knowledge. responsibility.
demand change. the ones that stand to reason. I would say. whatever they are. No one is going to issue edicts.DAMN IT! I’VE HAD ENOUGH! If one of those pismire “Czars” approached me. None of them had enough sense to stand back and let the process work its way through the ignorance and excesses of the last 20 years or so. These dog-eared/neophytes—and everything in between—have no governing power whatsoever. Some of the asinine diatribes of the Czars’ “reasons for being and priorities of the moment” are such stupid archaic nonsense that anyone with any sense would not listen to them—and some poor souls think they have some measure of authority. There will be individual and corporate dislocations and they will not fall evenly on society—there is no level ground. fire. or approved by the House and Senate for their particular task. or otherwise interfere with the correction of a free economy and the operation of this dynamic democratic republic. was never vetted. Those that do not will not matter. These are difficult and dangerous times. This is a democratic republic and we decide as a union and with consensus what laws we feel mutually (to the degree that is possible by employing something like the 80/20 rule) have 57 . “Get the hell out of my way!” I have too much to do to waste my time with any “appointed” individual who has never passed through any kind of hearing. There are only opportunities to become and to provide guidance from a free-market perspective that rigorously enforces some of the current laws.
and respect enough of the truth for what it really is—and it is seldom just this or that (read red or blue). individuals who are less than honest and less than well informed have infiltrated some of them. We are not interested in presidents who give pardons to criminals. That is what we are here for—our presence demands a rational participation in the business and operation of this beloved country. our government. although. We will forge ahead to manage our current needs and those of our future. We do not need a new house. In order to do this we must become knowledgeable enough. to concentrate our efforts. We are not going to “change the system. We can do this and now is the time. We are going to rely on an organic model of progress that will seek complementary solutions to reasonable needs of the moment and some understandable needs for the future. it just needs some difficult repairs. We have the appropriate infrastructures. care enough. That’s where we will allow the government. I’ve had enough! We are not going to radically alter the course of this nation. be responsible enough. This glorious 58 .” What we are going to do is correct the system by a transparency of information and through an informing of the public. We know what we need and we know what needs repair. or plea bargains that deliver less than an appropriate justice. It is not a mistake that we will make again. Most of us agree that we were insufficiently involved in some of these essentials and that was a big mistake.agreed to respect/observe. We will oversee as a nation a focus on the essentials of our nation by involving a sufficient number of individuals on a sufficient number of the impaired parts of the whole. We have abandoned it for far too long.
that is exactly what we will do. misguided neophyte.and imperfect nation deserves our very best and that is exactly what we will give it. we—the people—will demand that the legislative and judicial branches act to reinstate an executive that will provide some leadership and some reason for being the chief executive officer and commander-in-chief of this great nation. This was written for all of my friends from Quietville. or get the hell out of the way. 59 . The time has come to lead. follow. in the Hinterlands. along with dismissing his cadre of czars. If the executive branch of the government insists on a tyrannous monopoly of power. If we must impeach this messianic.
We must take heart. a mixture of this and that. AMERICA! We are but a young. we forged a bond of human spirits. There were and still are languages and beliefs of culture as well as religions that have continuously rubbed shoulders. The “touchings” of the species have always been our endeavor. What a challenge! There have been those times. those of us caught in the myopia of an individual’s lostness. we started with so many from so many places. We became “Americans” for better and for worse. when we found ourselves in those perennial moments of repose.TAKE COURAGE. We must be about a forever sifting and winnowing of those ingredients that form a part of the whole. It has been a salad of many colors and tastes. and everything in between. It has kept in the forefront of our path the need to maintain a vigilance emboldened by magnanimity. As the winds of thoughts and 61 .” the mountains and plains. From those swirling mists of histories and dreams. Then. however. when our intransigence blinded us to the sameness of us all. It has also given rise to a variegated whole that has confounded us and surprised us with its sweetness and its bitterness. We have turned our backs on each other and there have been times when we dedicated ourselves to conquering “it. growing republic. Our task seems to be greater than most others. we were reminded of our forever tasks of sharing all of what every one of us has to offer with the other. Indeed. sometimes jostling those of us who are scurrying on our way.
retrogrades of purpose. in the nonsense of parsing tidbits of rathers. We are. held tight to those overarching truths of freedom and intent. Now. continuously. We must always be about maintaining an awareness of our present circumstance. all of us. we have of late spent too much time away from our central obligations. we find ourselves confronted with an implosion of people and technology. means that we all have responsibilities that must be shouldered in order to keep the focus in sight and the purpose intact. Our subsequent global social intercourse expanded our horizons and fertilized our shores. citizens of our great republican experiment. to mine the depths of their wisdom and to garner new information from our present circumstance. Our penchant for utilizing our intelligence and resources does not have sufficient concomitant understanding. We are fortunate to have a road map—our Bill of Rights and our Constitution. To what new purpose must we dedicate ourselves? Certainly. at times. but not without the help of time and circumstance.movements swept the universal consciousness of all. We have sought slick and easier ways to 62 . In our current moment. which may have some hidden bent that could be dangerous and not complementary to the course of humanity’s purpose. We need. Even through that bloody war when brother fought brother. we. to fathom implications. This. simply put. we reluctantly rose to meet the challenges of oppression. we must always have a purpose that lies ahead of us—one for which we must be willing to spend blood and treasure in order to maintain our internal compass’s course. Then. as tyrannies raised their ugly heads. Wounds healed. we somehow knew that what we were about was right and wrong.
sees only things and takes our attention off the unfolding of life.do everything. Seasons must be shared and plumbed to harvest the fullness that is. and respecting heart. As the mystics of the ages have always contended. 63 . We must never forget to play. responsible. We have been so over-engrossed in the pace of the moment that we have even made the mistake of admiring sarcasm by stretching to the breaking point a sense of irony. especially with children. we must “let loose” in order to be found. caring. for the most part. To mine the depths of a complementing self. a self that seeks a path with the Divine. for us. While we are about us. a knowing. Our current age is bending our purpose to an avarice that. All life takes time. Every involvement of our kind must place its focus on life’s purpose.” yet many of us cannot find the time or inclination to lose ourselves in the magnanimity of letting our being transcend itself in movement and touch. All too often. Admonishments of “Hurry not!” have been ignored as we race against our own desires and those of others. This has always been true in any human engagement. the young and the old—of every species and thing. our brothers and our sisters. The warning that we do this at our peril has been greeted with scornful disdain. often forgetting that it is in waiting that we come to know the subtleties of the human interchange. the chipmunks and their surrounds along with the waters and the mountains are forgotten. We speak so often and capriciously of this “great bio-dance. we must be about holding the hands of children as we struggle and learn to love. Stroke gently our mates and children. We are the caretakers of the whole. we must never forget that we are also about them. A movement that exhilarates our souls and teaches us the loving touch that brings glee to the eyes and faces of the children.
human nature has been on display long enough for us to get a handle on enough to know enough. We are certainly willing to say that these needs would be different for each and every one of us. can own them. This does not mean that one person can dictate to another. what is new? Nothing. They are those simple needs that complement the necessities of life. We must also be aware that the many forms of entertainment and stimulus that feed our creativity do not have to be excessive. we must admit that the fundamentals are few. Our spirit must honestly take care and lead the rest of us to that ultimate sharing. By the way. When we reflect on those needs in a rational way. The old standards of food. to that reality that sustains our well-being. Yes. and yet not so different that they cannot be recognized by another person. or as close as possible.The Greeks would be puzzled. They are those needs that must be set out in some arc of human understanding so that each individual. we know the perennial wisdom of the species has forever pointed out the fact that enough has always been that word around which we have been unable to put our arms. we now have recovery programs for Internet and gaming addictions. Could we be Greek enough to just slow down enough to spend enough time loving in order to complement enough the organic’s marvelously efficient complementing process? So … what do we want? What do we need? We cannot answer these simple questions until we have assessed what are our real needs. We should be ashamed. So. if they are rational and stable enough. although there will be times when a person is unable to care for himself or herself. Many of us have turned our backs on life itself. and procreation are close enough to be used as a foundation. Many of us have just chosen to lie 64 . shelter.
we set our goals on some thing that the market wishes us to have. and spiritual lives. to better than average. We have produced venues for re-creation that meet every need. as a species. or here—actually or potentially. for the most part. We are a blessed nation. our mates.about what we know. How else could we have enough time to enjoy the wholeness of ourselves and our surrounds? Okay. to poor. requires us to focus our efforts on enough. America. Our training to live according to our needs must become our paramount endeavor. a truth that we have chosen to ignore. We have a wonderful breadth and depth of natural resources and a magnificent geography in which to recreate. get honest! We have much more than we need. (Who wants to be average. that is—we must know ourselves and to our own selves be true. Many times in the face of a greater truth. emotional. We. to mediocre. We lose. and those around us also lose. We actually believe some of what we’re told in the media about things that some advertiser wants us to believe. Why is it then that we have chosen to wilt in a prolonged adolescence? We over-consume and outdistance ourselves more often than not. Our challenge is to choose well what we really need. We move from shattered. when we don’t know enough to choose only that which we need. We must stop pampering and stop violating ourselves. We all need to remember that old word recreate really means to re-create that which is already there. mental. The good life must be understood in its classic sense. our 65 . are having a difficult time doing this. The results show up rather quickly in our physical. and even intelligent— without integrity?) The facts of the matter: That we individually and personally are obligated by a natural religion of humanity.
Take courage! This is not a utopia. When we get right down to it. Our creative independence should be channeled into simplicity and improving on the necessities of life. whatever” who have joined the ranks of “good consumers. the only way. cares enough. They are such wonderful gifts of the process. it is the only way we should live. We actually started some of this in the sixties and even then. and respects enough to live a life of truth-seeking. can ask themselves. Our greatest challenge is to slow down long enough to see what we are currently doing and to stop doing an awful lot of what we “think” we need to be doing. if we could raise children well. nor is this an irrational goal. We are a proud nation and a capable nation.children. married and unmarried. It is the only religion for the species. Being honest with nature’s needs is the only path. All of our challenges would be in the arena of life living and life sharing. we could do raising children well. we have those “hippies. guppies. “I choose my own path”? Then. yuppies. The greater truth is if we were to do self well.. etc. Even now. Our honest commitment should be to live well and to teach others to live well. etc. in addition. is responsible enough. we could create a nation of doers and winners and contribute to the global family. where are those who can say. those who can look out at society and say. “I choose to live for life”? 66 . we couldn’t quite get a mature commitment going.” Where are those monks and nuns. This means that we could offer a coherent effort of living for life as a society that knows enough. after they have found themselves. who are able to choose to be honest. We have lost our way in the excesses of an age. and our friends.
Bask in the undulations of reasonable rhythms of the audio. Be enthralled by the magnificence of honest videos. and where are those around you? Take courage! Start leading yourself and those you love towards a greater and more meaningful truth: Life as it is honestly meant to be lived. We have soiled enough sheets. We have torn off enough faces. We have destroyed enough ground. it means that we must force ourselves to pause and to take note. We have raped enough people. and ignored so many more. * This is Rule 2 from The Game of Life. To see the complete set of rules go to pathtotheself.” Every society is composed of ones. “I choose to be part of the solution. 67 . Look at the beauty of our possibilities. be brave enough to stare at the negative of the video and listen to the negative audio and say. Where are you. really. We have brutalized enough children. “Stand still and be silent!”* This does not mean we do nothing.com. Then.I sincerely hope this current debacle of ravenous and punishable avarice has bared our souls well enough to get our attention. It really means that we stop being shoved by an un-owned past and the nonsense of the moment.
instead of divining ways to pay off party hacks and supporters? 69 . Senate. November 21. and passed with such swiftness and conniving deceit. That we need to begin to repair the systems of HC is obvious. Have they ever thought—in their “closed-door meetings”—about how much could have been accomplished with our current understanding of knowable facts. 2009. And we know what most of these changes should be. We do not have to march like lemmings to the sea. Immediately set about to eliminate fraud and waste with appropriate focus and with swift punishment. should be ashamed of ourselves. We—those of us who choose to care—can choose to act with integrity of purpose and intent. 1.S. A bill that in its present form should never have been considered.HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH? The United States of America was treated to a disgraceful and despicable event on Saturday. was nevertheless passed by the U. we have known this for some time. much less passed. That we should begin now our HC focus with consensus on the most egregious aspects is also obvious. Every person who voted for this bill should be ashamed of themselves—and we—the citizens of this great country. We all bantered about different aspects of this heinous behemoth when we knew it was unfit to be considered. showing the world just how much of a gang of adolescents we actually can be. That we know there are Health Care (HC) issues is obvious.
Why is it that “politicians” tout “governmental solutions” when private enterprise could. we know there would be some additional costs—prosecutions and infrastructural changes—maybe another 10 to 20%. except for abortions. Wouldn’t you think that this would be a more productive direction to take for our capable and talented citizenry? Entrepreneurs would create entire businesses based upon honest and transparent. except those who are suffering during this economic debacle—all of which could have been foreseen and in which we all participated. efficient ideas who are ready to implement them. Provide health insurance options that are private. That would still leave us with a potential 70% savings. literally. 4. Shame on us—again! There are plenty of capable people who have workable. Just think how much could be done if a 10% fee was paid on every fraud. mistake. Let’s talk about showing the rest of the corrupt world how a democratic republic deals with serious problems. This is a no-brainer for most of us. portable. get things done? 70 . 3. Tort reform must be applied to every involved activity. and flexible—with no exclusions. scheme. or what-have-you that was discovered and remedied? Yes. affordable. How long must we maintain the lie? Let’s add this to the savings of fraud and corruption. efficiently operated private enterprise. There is no immediate catastrophe facing most of us.2. Send a clear message to the other corrupt governments of the world (they abound) that their season of employment/thievery is over. The other ancillary and peripheral aspects can be handled as we move along the road to improving our HC system.
the politicians. How un-American does it get? Neighbors don’t act this way. and a general population that is beginning to realize that each and every citizen has a personal responsibility to self and circumstance. as used and abused governmental infrastructure insists on business as usual (actually worse than usual—usually the 71 . federal. man. Oh Lord? In other words they lie. How long. and steal from us (the U.They. This is not a political party (read hack) issue. they colonize a fraudulent opportunity to take care of themselves at the expense of the whole. the Bill of Rights and the Constitution.) and from all others. How stupid is it to think that “If I steal a little from everyone. Just make the needed changes that we all know must be made.S. no one will ever know?” This simplistic trademark of the ages has outlived its time. those unique historical creative truths. and child who is a citizen of this great country. and as this deepening ownership and understanding sweeps the nation. do it because in their myopic hubris and corruption. cheat. (Wouldn’t it have been nice if Madoff had considered any aspect of his client’s business?) Proud. As this second body continues to awaken—with the profound realization that we have all committed the sin of neglect—and begins to coalesce around the simple and profound truths of our founding fathers and mothers. honest individuals use a just approach to the running of their enterprises. There is no need to construct a new house for a system that is the envy of the world. it is a personal issue for every woman. and international affairs. The current cultural moment manifests two huge bodies in motion: A governmental infrastructure that has morphed into a self-serving morass of conceit and corruption. In this realization there is a deepening awareness of the absolute need to have a knowledgeable participation in our local. state.
really needs). as meaningless dysfunctionals in the new transparent age of omnipresent information. is that the good people of this nation are aroused and are beginning to focus on the deep cracks and chinks in this participatory democratic republic. They are now becoming informed and are organizing in ways that will bypass—literally disregard—the bigoted nonsense of the current socially ignorant and corrupt politicians. without the ignorant. bigoted elite and conniving. A new breed of statesmen and stateswomen will take the reins of the various local. and federal infrastructures and they will set new priorities—priorities that mirror the current actual needs of the citizens of this great nation as we participate from the local to the global level. there will be a ground-swell of commitments that will reshape our current understanding and create a new path for public leaders. Their level of ignorance. We have talked enough about the benefits of private enterprise and freedom. or the power and capability of the communication potential. The poetry of this current clash—actually a sliding by—of these moving bodies. A profound commitment to common sense and doable legislation will emerge to drive the process of getting things done. and/or dismissed. All of those “politicians that aren’t” will find themselves marginalized and out of office in the very near term. Now is the time to show the world how it can be done—with integrity of purpose and heroic individual and corporate intent. or the federal government. corrupt players participating at any level. will expose their true lack of character and guilt and they will be jailed.governmental process takes an inordinately long time in its fumbling attempts to provide what special interests and corrupt “politicians” think they can get away with. Let’s get on with what we know to be right for ourselves and others. state. not what individuals and states. There is enough talent and 72 .
” Today is a new dawn. The prevailing inept and corrupt model of government is over—and they don’t even have a clue. affordable solutions. A new wind is blowing that will move right on by the socialists. the bigots. It has already been said that “This will be a new world and the old world will pass away.intelligence. 73 . committed. Business as usual is over. and the incompetents and replace them all with a vibrant. to create a very fast learning curve that can and will readily expose incompetence and corruption. along with the essential media technology. participatory democracy that sizes government to itself and offers prudent freedom opportunities to meet the needs of its constituency. while solving issues and implementing workable. the racists.
who cannot continue to maintain a presence in the public arena.” I would now add with Teilhard de Chardin.” It also must be noted: Just because we have access to “the speed of live” does not mean the veracity of the information is any better.S. Indeed.THE TRUTH – ELECTIONS – AND THE HEALTH OF A NATION That life happens along the banks and in the middle of the river is a given. or at the edge of the aisle. that politicians wrangle like young puppies? We have a limiting perspective held by too many individuals in the aisle. we now have the ability to enter and fathom the mindset of the age or at least the mindset of some of the users of the internet. then. The species has moved in the words of Bacon from “the tribe to the cave. With this reality. Information of any kind (and I really do mean any kind) can be had and shared at “the speed of live. Congress. We all need to parse our intake of any “news” with a healthy dose of reflective skepticism. Why is it. and with this accessibility a representation of the current understanding of a broad spectrum of the human family. we are now able to assess the reflection of a critical mass of its current users. across the aisle. We now live in an “open world”. from the marketplace to the theater. There is a critical mass of multiple-term and neophyte congressmen and women who do not understand the current moment and therefore cannot continue to participate in any working legislative body. in a distillation. from the cave to the marketplace. I speak here of members of both houses and both parties of the U. 75 . that as a critical mass we are now “ensconced” in the Noosphere (a net of knowledge that has force and direction).
We come to every encounter with given perspectives (prior beliefs).The many can now speak to the many about any given subject known to the species. those prior beliefs are bodies in motion and they stay in motion until they are hit head-on or at some angle with some new idea. but can occur. to synthesize. the process continues to confront. Survival is a must. and in this encounter a process of growth may occur. The former desperately demands to be our key template. In all of this there is an “always more than” or an “always less than” that dances within and without our naked being. now also have the ability to inform ourselves about tsunamis and viruses. This “organic process” of our mind’s truths flows in a river of consciousness that is always bumping or slipping by other truths. as well as the many other manifestations of nature’s incessant push and pull across the face of the earth. and the latter crashes like sparks upon the shores of consciousness’s ever-curious wonder—always seeking other pathways to complement our recognition. Yet we must know in all of this there is always a “lag time” accompanying any event that continuously comes with the understandings of the human mind. and yet we must still move according to our own kind in our own time. Growth does not necessarily occur. Along with this 24/7 personal sharing. It is also true that the voices of the many can be viewed as they garner sameness and similarity in the voices of the Noosphere. etc.” the human family. the loadstone of our understanding. Growth in understanding always takes time. 76 . “we. Hegel all over again. We then can have a melding of old and new information that can become a new synthesis. to confront and synthesize.
If we do not exercise sufficient reflective wisdom about consequences. that is alive and well in the world. This is not to say that we don’t need an attuned commitment to this ever-growing aspect of our lives (Health Care). and here I do not mean that they could not recite a few words or phrases. and 77 . Enough of us know. and they also know.So it is with the politicians of the moment – all (and I do mean all) who voted in favor of the Health Care Package must be sent packing. is always upon us. and this word is fertile with an inherent – if/then logic – that now is the purview of anyone who has access to the internet. The sickening stew makers who have operated in conspiratorial back rooms (some ignorant of the current moment and some on the stage of the day) don’t understand the new circumstance of our current moment: There is a new transparency. That ends justify the means is always that adolescent pedestal from which we have yet to fathom that the means always comes first and always they pave the way to Heaven or to Hell. a trans-parenting.” on page 19). We all know we do need to grow in our understanding and in our commitment to our own well-being. there is not a single individual who knows everything that is in the bill. This does not mean that reflective souls without access to the internet can’t exercise their. I mean no one really understands the reciprocity and convolution of the entire consequences of this legislative amorphous monstrosity. thanks to book titles and the perspective of some thoughtful souls. how will the young learn to do this thing called prudent legislation? The end of history. It simply means that something is better than nothing—if and only if that something complements the creative and dynamic responsibility of the whole to the whole (see the essay “Health Care.
” So much for the ostensible integrity of us. The fact is. parsed and otherwise. There will be audio and video. the citizens of this great democratic republic – to be honest with our responsibility to ourselves and our neighbors. simply put. They are fundamentally dishonest parasites on the public dole. They. the one they don’t understand and got thoroughly caught in. in their naïve arrogance (it seems this is a season for this).” They are neither “public” (in that wonderfully British sense) nor servants. A democracy of presence and purpose will be manifest. at depth. Most of us. The time has come. 78 .our. “Ye shall (alsoeventually) know the truth and the truth (if you choose to own it) shall set you free. are the same. for all of us. did not shoulder their responsibility to themselves nor to their constituents. of everything that occurs “when two or more are (were) gathered. position-taking moment that demanded from each and every one of them (and most of the rest of us who participated in this current ribald debate on health care) an “I don’t know enough about this bill to even discuss its substance. to proudly announce what they did not stand for – and that was an honest. We must send each and every one of them home. They chose. much less our “public servants. I don’t know what the attributes of this bill really are much less their intended and unintended consequences.” The magnanimity of ancient truths maintains their essential logic.” The truth is that every public servant – who isn’t – now knows that they lied in omission and commission about what they contributed to this congressional moment. with the help of the web. hard-won treasure trove of common sense. This new mirror of the present gives us the long-awaited opportunity to “stand naked in the wind”.
and every corner of the internet. but we will never again be willing to languish in the lazy electoral stupor that got us all in this morass of avarice and other demeaning behaviors of every ilk. There may be a few of them who will go home and experience a baptism of desire to shed their mantel of falsehood and. and we will consequently choose to follow that participation with the assumption of an electoral responsibility. We will rededicate ourselves to an ownership of word and deed. We will not tolerate an abject ignorance. admit their lack of understanding and their failures to commit to the common good of the citizens of this great country and the world. on every highway and byway. Thus 79 .They have forfeited any right to continue to represent their constituency and this country in any way shape or form at this current moment. We will now post watchful guards in every nook and cranny. They may even beg forgiveness and promise not to sin again. or a willingness to attempt to participate in our common dialog – or our legislative process – without sufficient information to make some meaningful contribution to our public well-being. baring their souls to their constituents. More voters will turn out to participate in a well-informed national debate. We will arouse sufficient responsibility in the general populace that there will be a groundswell of pride in our democratic republic’s political health and natural health. We shall seek to know the truth and we shall set ourselves free of our own ignorance and the collective ignorance of our elected officials. We owe this to ourselves and to all future generations. And some of us may be willing to forgive a few of them. Anyone who does not maintain a fidelity to this current fact is being foolish: No one knew enough to pass this piece of legis– lation and they will all be dealt with harshly in the commons of our debate.
much of which does not fathom the essentials of the hominizing efforts of the species. We will labor in the vineyard of truth and we will now truly set ourselves free. adolescent bunch of hooligans take over a part of our government. This will never happen again.there will be more votes than have ever before been cast in any election—at least not since our well-informed forefathers and foremothers understood enough about this republic’s sacred endeavor showed up to vote almost to the last man and woman. We now have the where-with-all to watch and inform in ways that will demand a new form of participative integrity. 80 . naïve. And this will happen with or without the participation of the “news” media. in the early history of this great and noble country. at least in their covert and overt demeanor. We came too close to allowing an insipid.
soul-seeking. Our being mandates a religiously societal response to life. the implosion of the species accelerates as technology makes possible the sharing of vast amounts of information to destroy. that we must accept the challenges of our current moment.” then this is what we must be about. a destroyer. petty and great wars of history. Therefore: In the face of the all.A HUMANISTIC MANIFESTO If it is as it has been said: “We are the rational. social animal. sentient being. a symbolizing. at this very moment when idealism and madness seek to slaughter and to stalemate the human effort. 81 . humankind has risen to the tasks of forming and reshaping the personhood of the species. natural disasters and economic upheavals. always pulling ourselves and others above the mundane drudgery towards the ecstasies of life’s challenges. freedom-loving. or to save. And now it is. a homofaber. Always pushing.
Let us dedicate ourselves to the saving of our kind.” we will be able then to sift and winnow truths scattered throughout the body of humanity.There is only this now upon which to build with a manifest spirituality based upon an understanding of the organic and the astrophysics of the day. and the saints and sages of the age: May they seek to touch the holy in order to save themselves and rededicate their focus to the saving of us from ourselves. technicians. roles that teach us how to save and how to protect. From accolades to conquerors we must move on to new roles. the destiny of the combined efforts of the ages. * * * 82 . “As the earth gets a new skin. To each their personal purpose. we must again set sail on this ocean of humanity. This is the great work of the present. And so… with the accumulated spirit of the species. To the scientists. As said so emphatically in The Phenomenon of Man. to each their personal prayer. or better still finds its soul.
to know that in this life I was blessed with the opportunity of coming upon an alpine meadow in late fall. and to envision the building of a cabin to protect the members of a family from the marauding winds of the seasons and of time. From Logger’s World. A Collection.And finally. and friends. 83 . and to share the warmth and inspiration of a hearth with my wife. my children. to create an expression of soul. I am eternally grateful.
comes the question. alleluia!” And in that euphoric moment. A voice sings. we forge the metals of a person’s dreams: Freedom! Freedom! Always freedom to express what is eternally already there.SPLASH! In the waters of the mind. “Alleluia. The All’s. 85 . a focused courage that sees the light. and upon which the annealing of an age must be met with courage. some heavy – bear witness. we courageously seek the Holy Grail of self as a divine expression. we find it all. In that synergism that flutters like shadows of fall. and not being blinded – because it is as yet not too close – can see the path. everyone’s. Whose soul are we saving? And from the silence the answer. amen! Amen. In the furnace of consciousness. mine. Every finely tuned speck of dust – some light.
We hear whining. 87 . through the mists and fogs of time. shoved and pushed our neighbors from our doors. Oh light of our redemption! Lead us towards freedom’s gate where stands the narrow pillars. ill-fitting clothes and with wizened voices utter prayers to those who’ve gone before. Lead on! We mumble in our tattered. must shoulder burdens of the ages and mount again our hill. dribbling from untutored lips. Oh light of chaste and holy purpose! Funnel us through night’s perils where lost from you we screamed and cried. Shine on.A BEACON ON A HILL Like a beacon on a hill. whimpering. Yet we. Beckon us on. the guards of life’s salvation. we stand in duty to our brethren. snivelings. like Prometheus. They must see the light so long denied their festering souls.
Slumber not and tarry little. Lead on to greater understanding of our purpose! To stand for one and one for all in holy space is gift enough in rift and race. Onward! Onward towards the light to an ever greater and greater democratic right! We owe this to all who’ve known the night. Lead on.Oh. Carry on through the tempests of our times towards that beacon on the hill! 88 . mother of our heathen souls birth again resolve: Embrace we must. Draw us on through storms of ignorance and petty pace. Oh light! Feed the hungry souls lost from sight. the democracy of hidden times where blood was shed in sacrifice to children yet unborn. we have eons yet to go. There must come a time when turning towards the bright and hopeful eyes of children we grip again the tiller of our ship.
Some lost possessions. Most of us have not and will not die horrendous deaths. 89 . Germans in Montevideo. We are all now standing shoulder to shoulder. and we have all become the beneficiaries. and to steal a phrase from science. We have moved to an interpenetrated geography. Common sense keeps surprising us with its delightful simplicity. hard work.” we must realize it is only in our doing that we honor their gifts. there is a communal wisdom that extends far beyond our own place of origin. with some wonder. ostensibly wiser. And within our own kind. We are an older. species. and we all came with a certain amount of avarice and ignorance. The journey was from fear to wonder and then back to fear. We owe them a debt of tremendous gratitude. and Swedes in Khartoum). its elegance. There are more of us now. family. They shared what they knew with others. and diligence to others that the only way to live becomes manifest. We must do what it takes to maintain the good and seek ways to be more efficient with our time and our resources. It is by the giving of our own creations. wherever we happen to be (Haitians in New York. Life itself is an accumulated event. in the accumulated common sense of the ages and of our own kind. in the giving of these gifts of wisdom. indeed their very own lives. Saying thank you is never enough. Standing on the threshold of “our time.ALL HANDS ON DECK! We are all coming home. and most of us deserve an opportunity to create and to pass on those creations to those of the next generation. There have always been those who possessed some measure of wisdom.
and in retrospect. We can all have an opinion. They are mandates of a presence that is aware of its presence and consequently aware of the presence of others. subjugated. And. in our judgment. “We are all people. This current parsing of truths should become first of all a reasoned reflection on the history of the making of the present. We must possess an acknowledgment of the fact that there is inherent in a present an accumulation of a past. slaughtered. Many were stolen from. In this existential awareness there is an inherent and omnipresent fathoming that screams in our ears. Freedom to create and to share is that holy circumstance that has led us to the threshold of the present. those people of the past. form some working knowledge of as it pertains to the needs of the people of the present. a commitment to self and others that bears the mark of a generous reciprocity. They are separate thoughts and they may become disconnected through some HD world of platitudes and passivity. We now know enough to say without hesitation. Pain and suffering can be understood by us all.There is in all of this the pursuit of excellence.” In this now there is a fundamental understanding. “Get off the damn couch!” Survival depends upon our doing as an expression of an owned. for 90 . by the vast majority of the inhabitants of the world. or Sunday reflections. How little is too little and how much is too much cannot be idle wonderings. and that also has a reciprocal responsibility to self and others – at all times. that we are all the same. what we desperately need is wisdom. and persecuted for the illgotten gains and misguided ideologies of a few. Nothing justifies inhuman behavior in the present. private presence that now knows (with the advent of the “world at the speed of live”) that only in sharing does any of this make sense. This is a past that we can.
Save the one and prosecute the other – and both with the same urgency of dispatch. We come and we come. Nature’s beneficent purpose has us all folded in its. Get on deck! Get off the couch! Save the ship! From “Sufficient Security. something can be done about the pain and suffering of most of us. 91 . those in need for whatever reason (and we need to know the whys of those reasonings) – and those who violate the fundamental laws of our own kind. There will always be those on the edges and at the centers who are victims of the predators of humanity. Vol. I. we must also care about others. or his arms.” in Sign Posts: A Collection of Essays. and badgering. or on the couch. There are no excuses for anyone to be sitting on the sidelines. Participate or die is the mandate of our kind. hers. Stop the whining.the most part. There are enough of us now for us to have a sufficient number of individuals engaged in the taking care of ourselves. Our challenge has always been two-fold: In caring for ourselves. complaining. We know that life is not a zero sum game.
and some are not. not that 5k. 93 . We need to learn how to prepare ourselves to die and to help others to die well. or the next candle-lit meal at some expensive (at times too expensive) bistro becomes our next immediate goal. a resting side. trained for and languished in. The maturing arc of our lives is graced with seasons of morethan that provide adventure. children. We spend our time vanquishing dragons and scaling mountains. a side where reminiscence reminds. Our plates are always full – and the thoughts of the next course always catch our attention. and we laugh and we cry. While in the presence of those meaningful others who form the constructs of our days – our mates. We swing back and forth from cradle to hammock parsing the yeses and nos of our perceptions. There are also those times spent in self-pity and distraction. Some of our days are filled with stellar events. the other one. Most of us never acquire that expertise of focus that builds confidence and helps us to focus on life’s truths. The next 5k (no. Many texts have taught the methodology of success as havers and doers. All of this takes place at the edge and in the middle of the river—long before we set our sights on the other side—the contemplative. still side. and involvement. coworkers. and friends – we attempt to saddle the electronic. There is a need to carry the candle around to the “other” side. commitment. there are always the anticipated accomplishments.LEARNING TO DIE WELL The “other” side of the live-well coin is the die-well side. synaptic bull of our times. with running shoes).
The hints of serenity beckon. Yet we continue to adopt the metronome of temporality and set our clocks by the deeds of our dashing days.So much of the design of the path of life is the hurry-up and get-there part. Then. or at least enough of what we are about. We look forward with a little more longing and appreciation to those moonrises and sunsets. Death. do we ask. life changes. our thoughts. what to do and why. we live not knowing 94 . And that goal is the sharing of love. and our deeds with every other person. all become essentials now. The fall of our time is set before us. The wind’s untiring efforts begin to annoy us. Where to go. our crossing-over point. “Are we ready to die?” To die. We have reached the tipping-point. or maybe walk now. we know we too will follow. And as that setting sun drops into the sea. is life’s goal. presents itself as a question: How well do we plan to set about leaving when most of our time has been spent doing? In truth. and although sometimes there is a sense of urgency. we slowly turn our heads and wonder about that distant shore. The foam of white-water has given way to placid reflections. Getting to know ourselves. in those moments of repose. how to do it and how to do it well should come as a gentle wind. just because some things are important and worth doing. as with all things. our final human exercise. Giving to self and others by apprehending and comprehending the self has become the mantra of the ages. this inescapable act of the living. We look back more now than we look ahead. We eat less and run slower – we jog. to arrive at that final frontier of our local (so to speak) spacetime. What sentiments flood our wondering minds? When. Our days are always numbered. they do not help us fix our attention on the whole of life’s journey. We are a gift from the All. our words.
The simplest of ways to do this is to stay on purpose. we can bask in a certitude that comforts us. we begin to understand the absolute need to honestly accept the responsibility for self and others. and frees us. we have then been on purpose and leave on purpose. to do what we should have been doing all along – that is. the ends happen. being our self (our real self) so that we can share our real self with ourself and with others. If we learn to do this as we become aware that our journey is ending and we did our very best. Who could do more than that? 95 . shelters us. We begin to own this most important “last act” when we choose to become the masters of our own lives.when we will be called upon to leave or how our departure will occur.” the “end” can come at any time and while we are “in motion” towards our own ends. The challenge when we start to go is to accept with that integrity of self-purpose a graceful letting go of ourselves and of others. Once we start to own the inevitability of our own presence and our own death. If a person is engaged in the purpose of fulfilling and sharing their “gift of life.
The attribute of being human which is of primordial importance is the freedom to self-define. Being moves. or one that is injurious to life. contain.MY CURRENT STATUS IS … I’m old enough to know that I don’t know everything. If this is true for one. 97 . it follows that to protect that which needs protection is a must. A concept of holy matters. If there is a debilitating circumstance. it is true for most. The only method to be followed in the maturing process is that upon a discovery and an ownership. the options are to isolate. Directions ultimately take us somewhere. and if necessary eliminate. only that which complements the one and the whole is the one to be used. Fundamentals matter. That complementary surrounding circumstance exuding life’s protective/enhancing attributes is the goal of most human life. Growth/maturation towards fulfillment is the goal for each and every one. And I’m old enough to know that I actually do know some of what I think I know. Few things are all bad. to mine the depths of what is there and then to own by sifting and winnowing chaff from wheat. Life is 24/7 and if the purpose of life is more life. therefore it must care.
“a Presence!” 99 . We must also know that in this there is intent. There is that forever yessness that murmurs and shouts. This truism stands rewarded in the laboratories of the ages. As mirth again escapes pursed lips. there gushes forth an understanding of the ages. “I am!”— an eternal repetition of the voice of the burning bush. There is in all of the thrusts and drags a coming and a going. there must be a right and a left hand.A DIRECTION In the great reciprocity of being’s directionality of efforts. into the arms of serenity and out of her arms. from that oft-maligned eternal well of hope.
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