Wednesday, August 30, 2006
by F. William Engdahl
August 27, 2006
The United States Government has been financing research on a genetic engineering technology which, when commercialized, will give its owners the power to control the food seed of entire nations or regions. The Government has been working quietly on this technology since 1983. Now, the little-known company that has been working in this genetic research with the Government’s US Department of Agriculture-- Delta & Pine Land-- is about to become part of the world’s largest supplier of patented genetically-modified seeds (GMO), Monsanto Corporation of St. Louis, Missouri.
Relations between Monsanto, Delta & Pine Land and the USDA, on closer scrutiny, show the deep and dark side of the much-heralded genetic revolution in agriculture. It proves deep-held suspicions that the Gene Revolution is not about ‘solving the world hunger problem’ as its advocates claim. It’s about handing over control of the seeds for mankind’s basic food supply—rice, corn, soybeans, wheat, even fruit, vegetables and cotton—to privately owned corporations. Once the seeds and their use are patented and controlled by one or several private agribusiness multinationals, it will be they who can decide whether or not a particular customer—let’s say for argument, China or Brazil or India or Japan—whether they will or won’t get the patented seeds from Monsanto, or from one of its licensee GMO partners like Bayer Crop Sciences, Syngenta or DuPont’s Pioneer Hi-Bred International.
While most of us don’t bother to reflect on where the corn in the box of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes or the rice in a box of Uncle Ben’s Converted Rice come from, when we grab it from the supermarket shelf, they all must originate with seeds. Seeds can either be taken by a farmer from the previous season’ seeds, and planted to produce the next harvest. Or, seeds can be bought new each harvest season, from the companies which sell their seeds.
The advent of commercial GMO seeds in the early 1990’s allowed companies like Monsanto, DuPont or Dow Chemicals to go from supplying agriculture chemical herbicides like Roundup, to patenting genetically altered seeds for basic farm crops like corn, rice, soybeans or wheat. For almost a quarter century, since 1983, the US Government has quietly been working to perfect a genetically engineered technique whereby farmers would be forced to turn to their seed supplier each harvest to get new seeds. The seeds would only produce one harvest. After that the seeds from that harvest would commit ‘suicide’ and be unusable.
There has been much hue and cry, correctly so, that this process, patented ‘suicide’ seeds, officially termed GURTs (Genetic Use Restriction Technologies), is a threat to poor farmers in developing countries like India or Brazil, who traditionally save their own seeds for the next planting. In fact, GURTs, more popularly referred to as Terminator seeds for the brutal manner in which they kill off plant reproduction possibilities, is a threat to the food security as well of North America, Western Europe, Japan and anywhere Monsanto and its elite cartel of GMO agribusiness partners enters a market.
Please read more at http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=ENG20060827&articleId=3082
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Sunday, August 27, 2006
In addition to being blacklisted as one of PETA’s picks for the 10 Worst Laboratories for conducting crude and useless experiments on monkeys, Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) is now facing public condemnation from animal- and gay-rights advocates and scientific experts for its ill-conceived “gay sheep” experiments.
At the heart of these multi-million-dollar experiments, which are funded by taxpayers through the year 2008, is the goal of identifying a biological basis for homosexuality in sheep in an effort to “cure” homosexuality in humans. OHSU experimenter Charles Roselli is killing scores of sheep and cutting open the brains of rams he calls “male-oriented” (homosexual) in an attempt to find the hormonal mechanisms behind homosexual tendencies, so that they can subsequently be changed.
Roselli is also working with experimenter Frederick Stormshak of Oregon State University (OSU), who has surgically installed an estrogen implant in the bodies of rams in an effort “to restore tissue levels of estrogen comparable to those of heterosexual rams and affect sexual behavior accordingly.”
In a March 5, 2004, news release issued by OHSU, the university admitted that Roselli and Stormshak would “like to know whether sexual preferences can be altered by manipulating the prenatal hormone environment, for instance by using drugs to prevent the actions of androgen in the fetal sheep brain.”
Equally disturbing is the experimenters’ stated intention to apply their findings in sheep to humans. This is highlighted in Roselli’s application for public funding from the National Institutes of Health: “The [sheep] experiments proposed in this application will furnish important information that is needed to formulate and test novel hypotheses about the biological basis of sexual orientation in higher mammals including humans”. Roselli goes on to note in one of his published journal articles that “this research also has broader implications for understanding the development and control of sexual motivation and mate selection across mammalian species, including humans.”
This is not only a needless slaughter of animals and an ethically indefensible experiment, but has also been condemned by experts on scientific grounds. Dr. Malgosia Cegielski, a Portland-based clinical psychologist, calls Roselli’s gay-sheep experiment “frivolous” and “frightening.” She says: “I don’t see any clinical utility or human benefit with what he’s doing. … The gene expression and biological differences at a cellular level between [nonhuman] animals and humans is so huge. To draw conclusions between animal behavior [and] humans is a joke.”
What You Can Do
Please send polite letters to OSU and OHSU at the addresses shown below and ask that they immediately stop the needless use and slaughter of animals in these experiments and instead use taxpayers’ money for beneficial research that does not involve the use of animals or for funding a sexual diversity acceptance and tolerance initiative:
Dr. Ed Ray, President
Oregon State University
634 Kerr Administration Building
Corvallis, OR 97331-2128
Joseph Robertson Jr., M.D., M.B.A., President-Elect
Oregon Health and Science University
3181 S.W. Sam Jackson Park Rd.
Portland, OR 97239-3098
Read the letters that PETA sent to OSU and OHSU.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
Instead of adopting Plato's teachings, Americans have allowed a depraved junta to seize control of the four most powerful brainwashing technologies in modern history: education, television, popular music, and movies. Through the insidious use of these instruments, American young people are programmed to value greed, egomania, money, power, fame, and cleverness in unscrupulousness, and are conditioned to crave and embody violence, ignorance, and chaos.
"The average person in the US watches about four hours of television each day. Over the course of a year, we see roughly twenty five thousand commercials, many of them produced by the world's highest-paid cognitive psychologists. And these heavily produced advertisements are not merely for products, but for a lifestyle based on a consumer mind-set. What they're doing, day in and day out, twenty-five thousand times a year, is hypnotizing us into seeing ourselves as consumers who want to be entertained rather than as citizens who want to be informed and engaged. We need to take back the airwaves as a sphere of mature conversation and dialogue about our common future."
"Experiments conducted by researcher Herbert Krugman reveal that, when a person watches television, brain activity switches from the left to the right hemisphere. The left hemisphere is the seat of logical thought. Here, information is broken down into its component parts and critically analyzed. The right brain, however, treats incoming data uncritically, processing information in wholes, leading to emotional, rather than logical, responses. The shift from left to right brain activity also causes the release of endorphins, the body's own natural opiates--thus, it is possible to become physically addicted to watching television, a hypothesis borne out by numerous studies which have shown that very few people are able to kick the television habit.
Peter Russell, "Dehypnosis - Breaking the Trance"
"It is no measure of health
to be well adjusted
To a profoundly sick society."
Thursday, August 24, 2006
That's right. We did it! At 9:20 a.m. today, the FDA approved over-the-counter access to the "morning-after" pill. Thanks to the letters, petitions, and support from people like you, the FDA finally overcame the political pressure from the White House, Congress, and anti-choice lobbyists, and approved the morning-after pill for over-the-counter sales.
Medical experts and scientists at the FDA have asserted for years that the morning-after pill - which can prevent an unintended pregnancy if taken within 72 hours after sex - should be available without a prescription. It's safe, it's effective, and it's a commonsense way for women to prevent unintended pregnancy.
Thank you again for helping achieve this victory for women - your action does make a difference.
NARAL Pro-Choice America
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Is Ben & Jerry's serving up "Chocolate Chip Cruelty Dough"?
On its web site, the ice cream company known for its social conscience criticizes what it calls "giant, industrial farming operations," and it ends one of its commercials with the tag line, "Ben & Jerry's: Join our fight for small family farms."
But this week, after nearly a year of promises to The Humane Society of the United States that it would phase out battery-cage eggs in its ice cream, the company has taken a 180 degree turn and chosen to continue to buy eggs—perhaps 20 to 30 million of them a year—from factory farms that confine egg-laying hens in tiny battery cages so small the birds can't even spread their wings.
Tell Ben & Jerry's right now to stop supporting this cruelty! Please call Ben & Jerry's today at 802-846-1500 (between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. EST) and urge the company to keep its promises to stop supporting battery cage cruelty. You can also take action online: CLICK HERE TO SEND AN EMAIL
Friday, August 18, 2006
Contact the Chinese government and demand that it halt the further slaughter of dogs. Urge the Chinese government to enact a strict anti-cruelty law immediately.
Don't let this massacre go unnoticed. Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper or post the news on your favorite blog. Let the world know about China's recent and shocking mass murder of dogs and the need for a cruelty-to-animals law in the world's most populated country.
Don't buy or wear fur. China supplies more than half of all finished fur garments that are imported into the United States. Because dog and cat fur is so deliberately mislabeled, the bottom line is that if you're buying fur, there's no way to tell whose skin you're wearing. And all animal lives are precious.
Right now, China is listening to those who speak out for animals. After intense international pressure, the Chinese government has just halted its plan to give foreigners licenses to hunt wild and endangered animals. Adding your voice today to those demanding change in China could help millions of animals. Thank you for speaking out against cruelty and for standing up for animals everywhere.
Thursday, August 10, 2006
Five years later, purveyors claim academic momentum
Sunday, August 6, 2006
These men aren't uneducated junk scientists: Barrett will teach a class on Islam at the University of Wisconsin this fall, over the protests of more than 60 state legislators. Jones is a tenured physicist at Brigham Young University whose mainstream academic job has made him a hero to conspiracy theorists. Five years after the terrorist attacks, a community that believes widely discredited ideas about what happened on September 11, 2001, persists and even thrives. Members trade their ideas on the Internet and in self-published papers and in books. About 500 of them attended a recent conference in Chicago, Illinois. The movement claims to be drawing fresh energy and credibility from a recently formed group called Scholars for 9/11 Truth.
The organization says publicity over Barrett's case has helped boost membership to about 75 academics. They are a tiny minority of the 1 million part- and full-time faculty nationwide, and some have no university affiliation. But some are well educated, with degrees from elite universities such as Princeton and Stanford and jobs at schools including Rice, Indiana and the University of Texas. "Things are happening," said co-founder James Fetzer, a retired philosophy professor at the University of Minnesota Duluth, who maintains, among other claims, that some of the hijackers are still alive. "We're going to continue to do this. Our role is to establish what really happened on 9/11."
What really happened, the national September 11 commission concluded after 1,200 interviews, was that hijackers crashed planes into the twin towers. The National Institute of Standards and Technology, a government agency, filed 10,000 pages of reports that found fires caused by the crashing planes were more than sufficient to collapse the buildings. The scholars' group rejects those conclusions. Their Web site contends the government has been dishonest. It adds: the "World Trade Center was almost certainly brought down by controlled demolitions" and "the government not only permitted 9/11 to occur but may even have orchestrated these events to facilitate its political agenda." The standards and technology institute, and many mainstream scientists, won't debate conspiracy theorists, saying they don't want to lend them unwarranted credibility.
But some worry the academic background of the group could do that anyway.
Members of the conspiracy community "practically worship the ground [Jones] walks on because he's seen as a scientist who is preaching to their side," said FR Greening, a Canadian chemist who has written several papers rebutting the science used by September 11 conspiracy theorists. "It's science, but it's politically motivated. It's science with an ax to grind, and therefore it's not really science." Faculty can express any opinion outside the classroom, said Roger Bowen, general secretary of the American Association of University Professors.
However, "with academic freedom comes academic responsibility. And that requires them to teach the truth of their discipline, and the truth does not include conspiracy theories, or flat Earth theories, or Holocaust denial theories." Members of the group don't consider themselves extremists. They simply believe the government's investigation was inadequate, and maintain that questioning widely held assumptions has been part of the job of scholars for centuries.
"Tenure gives you a secure position where you can engage in controversial issues," Fetzer said. "That's what you should be doing." But when asked what did happen in 2001, members often step outside the rigorous, data-based culture of the academy and defer to their own instincts.
Daniel Orr, a Princeton Ph.D. and widely published retired economics chair at the University of Illinois, said he knew instantly from watching the towers fall that they had been blown apart by explosives. He was reminded of watching an old housing project being destroyed in St. Louis, Missouri.
David Gabbard, an East Carolina education professor, acknowledges this isn't his field, but says "I'm smart enough to know ... that fire from airplanes can't melt steel."
Jones focuses on the relatively narrow question of whether molten metal present at the World Trade Center site after the attacks is evidence that a high-temperature incendiary called thermite, which can be used to weld or cut metal, was involved in the towers' destruction.
He concludes thermite was present, throwing the government's entire explanation into question and suggesting someone might have used explosives to bring down the towers.
"I have not run into many who have read my paper and said it's just all hogwash," Jones said.
Judy Wood, until recently an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Clemson University, has been cited by conspiracy theorists for her arguments the buildings could not have collapsed as quickly as they did unless explosives were used.
"If the U.S. government is lying about how the buildings came down, anything else they say cannot be believed," she said. "So why would they want to tell us an incorrect story if they weren't part of it?"
In fact, say Greening and other experts, the molten metal Jones cites was most likely aluminum from the planes, and any number of explanations are more likely than thermite.
And the National Institute of Standards and Technology's report describes how the buildings collapsed from the inside in a chain reaction once the floors began falling.
"We respect the opinions of others, but we just didn't see any evidence of what people are claiming," institute spokesman Michael Newman said.
Wisconsin officials say they do not endorse the views of Barrett, an adjunct, but after investigating concluded he would handle the material responsibly in the classroom.
That didn't mollify many state legislators.
"The general public from Maine to Oregon knows why the trade towers went down," said state Rep. Stephen Nass, a Republican. "It's not a matter of unpopular ideas; it's a matter of quality education and giving students their money's worth in the classroom."
In a July 20 letter obtained by The Associated Press in an open records request, Wisconsin Provost Patrick Farrell warned Barrett to tone down his publicity seeking, and said he would reconsider allowing Barrett to teach if he continued to identify himself with the university in his political messages.
BYU's physics department and engineering school have issued statements distancing themselves from Jones' work, but he says they have not interfered.
At Clemson, Wood did not receive tenure last year, but her former department chair, Imtiaz ul Haque, denies her accusation that it was at least partly because of her September 11 views.
"Are you blackballed for delving into this topic? Oh yes," Wood said. "And that is why there are so few who do. Most contracts have something to do with some government research lab. So what would that do to you? The consequences are too great for a career. But I made the choice that truth was more important."
"If we're in higher education to be trying to encourage critical thinking," Wood says, "why would we say 'believe this because everybody else does?'"
The Associated Press.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
I corrected their spelling so it would be easier for everyone else to read (i dont correct spelling on their papers, however, because I want the kids to focus on content rather than the english language and all its stupid and confusing rules).
The boy who wrote this poem is Mexican, but he had no idea about his heritage. He was extremely interested in the lessons. I was glad to make that connection with him.
"In the beautiful valley, or so I thought,
It was a wonderful day.
Until a man arrived that was a god, or so we thought.
His name was Cortes
And we gave him gold and food,
But it was not enough.
He killed all the Aztecs,
He was no Quetzalcoalt.
I will never forget what the Spanish did."
The following boy has A.D.D., rarely paid attention and often got into trouble for making inappropriate comments before thinking. But when I placed his assignment before him, I never so him so focused.
"Why, why must we perish?
Everybody is dying.
We are all going to be dead
If they keep this up.
Someone must put a stop to this.
We must hide
and build a city away from the Spanish.
Have all strong people in an army
and maybe we can put a stop to this,
and one day
We will live in peace and harmony."
Another boy with A.D.D., who managed to write more than one sentence for this poem:
"Why did we get attacked?
We didn't do anything wrong.
I don't know why they destroyed our city."
This following girl wrote the first half of the poem and stopped. but then she decided to continue and rewrite history. Truly amazing and beautiful...almost made me cry. (she had been very upset to learn what the conquistadors did to the Aztecs).
"My city is very nice.
The lake is blue
And the flowers are growing.
I had traveled on a canoe
And I saw a lot of gold.
Then I came back
And guess what I saw...
I saw Quetzalcoatl
and he came back!
Everyone was happy.
We had a party to celebrate
The coming back of Quetzalcoatl."
Thursday, August 03, 2006
The Principles of a New Activism are:
1. STILLNESS AS AN ACT OF POWER
The cultivation of a quiet mind is the most effective antidote to chaos.
A moment of stillness is a universal corrective, bringing all conditions of disharmony into immediate alignment with the peace of God. While manifestations of chaos may take time to flush out of the material realm, the introduction of stillness automatically interrupts the trajectory of chaos.
In meditation our only task is to "be still and know." As we simply sit in silence, knowing that God’s love embraces all living things, divine harmony becomes an operative principle in the world around us.
The deeper the stillness the deeper the level of sharing.
2. ENVISIONING AS AN ACT OF POWER
In the material realm, power is determined by material wealth; in the spiritual realm, power is determined by spiritual wealth.
In the 21st Century, wealth will be determined by consciousness and imagination. Whoever has the tools of consciousness will wield the greatest power on earth. In this sense, we will begin at last to experience the infinite abundance –equally attainable by all — which is our spiritual inheritance as human beings.
The New Activist does not ignore the powers of the material realm, but rather recognizes their value in helping to shape a better world. We seek to integrate the power of the world with the power of spirit, thus achieving a truly holistic sense of self. With the heart in charge, the intellect is not marginalized but uplifted to its highest potential.
Living in the modern world, it is a shift in thinking to withdraw our attachment to belief in the exclusive authority of external powers. From money, to business, to science, to medicine, to technology, to government, we are mesmerized by outer appearances, assigning to them all manner of authority that they do not inherently possess. We do so at the expense of our own remembrance that we, ourselves, wield greater power than does any external authority. We have been given the power to transform the world, through our capacity to change how we think about the world. There is no condition of outer substance that is not transformed by love.
Once a situation is taken to prayer, and seen meditatively as healed and whole, the spiritual activist can "consider it done." Our capacity to inwardly see a condition of peace invokes that condition through metaphysical power. When two or more are gathered in the perception of perfect possibility, and experience together the peace which such discernment bestows, the conditions of chaos simply and literally cannot remain.
For instance, if violence erupts in Jerusalem, the work of the New Activist is to inwardly see the potential for peace. Prayerful concentration on the possibility of peace, unhindered by attachment to material "facts," lifts the mind to its natural function as a worker of miracles. The purpose of the mind is that it be used, with God, to Co-create the conditions of peace on Earth. It is both our natural function, and our inherent power, to invoke the world that dwells beyond the veil of human illusion.
Beyond the veil, there are no enemies; there are only brothers and sisters. Beyond the veil, there is no conflict; there is only peace. Beyond the veil, there is no limit; there is only infinite possibility for good. To discern that reality for Israelis and Palestinians, at a time when their own perception is understandably clouded by the immediate conditions of worldly affairs, is both the greatest gift and the greatest power that can be wielded in that situation.
Many throughout the world would be thinking about the violence in Jerusalem; even those with the best of intentions, however, are limited in their capacity to make peace, if the crux of their attention is focused on war. So it is that the New Activist, while not looking away from Jerusalem, looks toward it with new eyes. We look to the region, as does the traditional activist, but not with a mind that seeks to "fix it." We look through the eyes of a higher mind, lifting the veil of illusion by simply seeing beyond it.
When a critical mass of prayer and meditation is extended in the direction of peace, then the conditions of war will automatically be cast away from Earth.
3. INTERPERSONAL HEALING AS AN ACT OF POWER
The source of war lies in each of us, as does the source of peace. As we rid our own hearts of the spark of violence, we are fostering peace in the world.
Ultimately, we come to realize that there is no world outside us. All external reality is mere reflection of consciousness, and thus, in order to change the world, we must change our minds. The world is in the circle, as it is in every one of us.
Gathering together as New Activists, we find among us the roots of war. Someone may judge someone else; someone may not like someone else’s personality; someone may hold resentments regarding a particular situation. As we heal ourselves of our own judgments and subtle thoughts of conflict, we automatically affect the minds of those who perpetrate greater violence in the world.
The Peace Circle is a sacred circle. It holds the pain, as well as the possibility for transformation, of the world in which we live. We do not seek outside ourselves, but rather within, for the source of all darkness as well as the source of all light. The issue of concern becomes not the love withheld by someone else in a situation outside the circle, but rather the ways in which we ourselves might be contributing to the suffering of mankind.
For instance, if a couple attending the Peace Circle are having problems in their relationship, then the Circle holding their bond in prayer is a political act: healing between any two people literally helps to heal the world. When any two experience conflict, the universal condition of conflict is fueled. When any two experience forgiveness, that condition is universally ameliorated. Thus do the pursuits of personal growth and political healing intersect in spiritual activism. In a wider sense, it is the political work of the Circle to address the personal fears of its members.
According to Mahatma Gandhi, we must "be the change we want to see happen in the world." This explains one of his tenets of non-violence, that "the end is inherent in the means." An angry generation cannot create peace in the world. That we be peaceful, must be our personal effort as well as our political goal.
At the same time, it is difficult to achieve peace with our fellow human beings when we are not at peace within ourselves. So it is that the healing of our own fractured sense of self becomes a prerequisite of sorts, for the healing of our relationship with others and the world.
4. DEPTH OF INSIGHT AS AN ACT OF POWER
The most powerful axis of activism today is vertical rather than horizontal. The depth of a conversation is more important than how many people are involved in it.
A wise society holds its common experiences wisely, and in so doing, creates subtle and invisible sources of healing. The more meaningful the conversation a society holds with itself, the more meaningful its collective actions become.
The traditional activist is often tempted to facilitate a more shallow group discussion, in order to attract as many people as possible to it. More attention is paid to the numbers of people supporting a position, than to the genuine justice of the position itself. On a certain level this is reasonable, as a main role of the traditional activist is to achieve electoral gain. The New Activist, however, makes the attainment of a deep and loving understanding our highest priority.
It is not assumed that the quest for such spiritual understanding automatically leads to the attainment of political power. But, immediate political gain is not necessarily the goal of the New Activist. Rather, we place our faith in the power of truth over time, recognizing that positions supporting a freer, more compassionate human experience are literally backed by cosmic impulse. In the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., "The moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends toward justice."
To make depth of insight our highest priority, is not to lack political focus. It is to draw a distinction between short-term political pursuits and long-term evolutionary issues. The spiritual activist seeks as deep a discussion of an issue as possible, exploring the psychological, spiritual, historical, mythological and philosophical issues. Love is the greatest power, but not necessarily immediately. Some of the most important political achievements in history were, when first articulated, considered outrageous and impossibly idealistic by the status quo of the time. Examples abound, from the abolitionist, women’s suffrage, labor and civil rights movements in the United States, to the end of apartheid in South Africa. Early in these movements, the argument would of course have been made that "No one will buy this," "It’s just a few of us against all of them," "We don’t have the money and they do," etc. The power of an unalterable truth, however, gives spiritual fuel to such efforts, providing invisible sources of aid throughout the political struggles which follow.
Depth of moral authority, as evidenced in political quests for social justice, freedom, etc., forms a field of conscious desire and intention which, if harnessed effectively, ultimately leads to political power. What begins with the conviction of usually a few charismatic personalities, ultimately spreads like positive contagion through the hearts of resonant souls.
The New Activist relies on the strength of higher awareness to create breakthrough and possibility in the material world, by strengthening the conviction, courage and personal eloquence of the activist. It is not our numbers, but our depth of insight, which transform events around us. The spiritual impulse toward what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., referred to as "the establishment of the beloved community," fuels every fundamental shift in the direction of higher good. Mental alignment with that impulse is the New Activist’s greatest power.
5. RADICAL GOOD WILL AS AN ACT OF POWER
Recognition and affirmation of the spiritual innocence in all human beings creates a field of possibility for the emergence of miracles.
In A Course in Miracles, it is written, "Miracles are everyone’s right, but purification is necessary first." The presence of fear-based thinking within our own minds is the primary block to the effectiveness of the New Activist.
It is tempting to think that a huge multinational corporation, aided by assets of billions of dollars, has more power to achieve its will on Earth than do we who merely live here. Once we recognize, however, that money is not as powerful as prayer, or imagination, or most importantly, love, then we begin to harness
the powers of the heart on behalf of planetary healing. The New Activist does not project negativity toward the corporation, its executives, or its shareholders, but rather surrounds them all in a field of positive intention, surrendering them to the spirit of one-ness in us all. We ask that they be blessed; we ask that their hearts and minds be lifted to divine right order; we ask that every action of every living thing promote the health of planet Earth and its inhabitants.
Any negative thoughts about the "powers that be," limit our capacity to affect their behavior. A Peace Circle is the place to safely surrender such thoughts to God, moving beyond our temptation to personally demonize those with whom we disagree, we actually become more powerful. We recognize our capacity to hold people accountable for their actions, without deviating from our love. It is our radical good will toward all of humanity that naturally works miracles. Some call such thinking naïve. What is naïve, in fact, is the thought that any amount of traditional politicking can stop the juggernaut of planetary devastation that is wreaked by market forces when no longer restrained by the dictates of conscience.
The New Activist uses prayer, meditation and forgiveness as tools for the creation of a world made right. Whoever wields the power of a loving mind wields a power that is greater than any on Earth, restoring conscience to its primary place in human affairs.
6. CREATING SACRED SPACE AS AN ACT OF POWER
The simple configuration of people gathered in a circle, sharing prayer and meditation and heartfelt conversation, casts a web of healing power affecting not only the members of the circle but the world at large.
Humans carry an ancient memory of the power of ritual. The creation of sacred space is not merely symbol but rather the actual harnessing of energy for the purpose of spiritual healing. Within a sacred circle, we are lifted past the limitations of personality which normally hold us back; greater wisdom, greater clarity, greater insight emerge. As the veils of the personality are lifted, so are the walls which divide us. No longer experiencing a false sense of separation from each other, our oneness in God becomes an experiential reality.
Within the sacred field of oneness, we experience the ultimate equality of souls. The level of our personal sharing reflects a deeper, more heartfelt truth, when the competitive, fear-based grasping of the ego is transcended. The benefit to our collective experience is obvious. Spiritual force fosters deeper honesty, creating a web of social intimacy among members of a group. When the heart becomes the basis for both speaking and listening, the individual’s personal expression becomes a more meaningful contribution to an emerging collective truth.
7. SPIRITUALLY CENTERED ACTION AS ACT OF POWER
The New Activist wields power by standing for what could be, as opposed to fighting what is. Making a stand for a new possibility, we attain the power to create it.
When asked whether meditation alone could save the world, His Holiness the Dalai Lama responded, "If we are to save the world, we must have a plan. But no plan will work unless we meditate."
It is the integration of the powers of spirit and matter which conjoin to form the New Activism. Ultimately the yin of personal development meets the yang of social activism, as the New Activist turns his or her attention to traditional political, social, or community efforts, but with a new dimension of spiritual and personal power.
For instance, at a political gathering the New Activist remembers to avoid the temptation to demonize one’s opponent; at an activist’s gathering, the New Activist has acquired the serenity to become the most eloquent and inspiring spokesperson for the group’s effort; working on a project, the New Activist silently meditates with others for a blessed outcome. The New Activist sets a standard for a level of positive, powerful, spiritually-motivated activism, thus making a maximal impact within any community.
Using the tools above, the New Activist has greater capacity to be an instrument of change. In service to a higher good, allowing a higher dimension of awareness to affect our personalities, we are thus in a position to effect the greatest good. New wine demands new bottles, new ends demand new means, and new ideas demand new hearts.
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
Being toxic is an unavoidable consequence of living in the sea of synthetic chemicals that is our modern world. A healthy body is an efficient eliminator of toxins. We are aware of our daily elimination of feces and urine, two vital forms of elimination provided by our colon and kidneys, but there are other important forms of elimination. We have to breathe frequently and eliminate toxic carbon dioxide from our lungs. Our liver filters our blood supply of toxins. Our lymph system moves toxins and excess fluids from the body, as do our sweat glands. Our skin is also an elimination system. Any restriction or malfunctioning of those systems of elimination can cause toxins to accumulate and illness or disease may result.
We can tolerate a certain level of toxins in our body. For each person this tolerance level will be different depending on your exposure levels, your lifestyle, diet, drug intake, general habits, medical treatments, surrounding environment, and the strength and clear functioning of your faculties of elimination and the general strength of your immune system. Here is an opportunity to gauge your own level of toxicity.
**Please note: This is not a scientific test or health evaluation. It simply suggests the possible extent to which you carry a body burden of chemicals. Give yourself one point for every question that you answer "yes"to.
1. Do you use plastic containers to store food or drinking water
2. Do you eat microwaved foods that come packaged with plastic wrap
3. Do you eat non-organic cereals, bread, and other grain products
4. Do you use deodorants, shampoos and soaps containing synthetic chemicals
5. Do you use after shave lotions or perfumes containing synthetic chemicals
6. Do you use cosmetics or hair colorings containing synthetic chemicals
7. Do you live or work in an area that has synthetic carpeting
8. Do you live or work in an area that has wood cabinets or new furnishings
9. Do you live or work near agricultural areas that use non-organic production methods
10. Do you live or work in an area that has painted walls or ceilings
11. Do you drink non-organic coffee
12. Do you use sugar substitutes or eat any foods that contain "low calorie" sugar substitutes or sweeteners
13. Do you eat foods that contain hydrogenated fats such as margarine or do you eat any foods that contain canola oil or cottonseed oil
14. Do you eat "Fat Free" foods or snacks made with fat substitutes
15. Do ever drink municipal tap water at home or at restaurants
16. Do you eat non-organic fruits, vegetable, grains, meats (all types), dairy foods (all types)
17. Do you breathe polluted city air
18. Have you owned a new car and smelled the 'new car' smells
19. Do you eat fish more than once a week
20. Do you dry clean your clothes at cleaners using synthetic chemicals
21. Are you often irritable
22. Are you a smoker
23. Do you have difficulty breathing when anxious
24. Do you sometimes use bug killer products inside your home
25. Do you often have a loss of memory and inability to concentrate
26. Do you sometimes feel dizzy
27. Do you sometimes have ringing in your ears
28. Do you get skin rashes very easily
29. Do you often have a metallic taste in your mouth
30. Is your menstrual cycle often erratic or interrupted
31. Do you have excessive hair loss
32. Do you sometimes have unexplained numbness
33. Do you often feel very fatigued or nauseous
34. Does your speech sometimes become slurred or disordered
35. Have you received 3 or more vaccinations
36. Are you involved in one or more of the following professions or hobbies:Agricultural Product Handlers, Asbestos Abatement Technicians, Auto Mechanics, Battery Manufacturers, Battery Recyclers, Canning Plant Worker,Carpenters, Ceramic Manufacturers, Construction Workers, Cosmetic Manufacturers, Cosmetologists, Dental Assistants, Dental Lab Workers, Dentists, Physicians, Diesel Equipment Mechanics, Dynamite Manufacturers, Dynamiters, Miners, Electronic Assembly Workers, Electronic Component Manufacturing, Electroplaters, Photographers,Engravers, Explosives Experts, Fertilizer Manufacturers, Farmers, Fiberglass Installers, Fiberglass Manufacturing Workers, Firemen, Firing Range Operators, Fishermen, Fluorescent Tube Manufacturers, Foundry Workers, Glass Manufacturing Workers. Glassblowers, Grinder Operators, Hairdressers, Hazardous Material Workers, Ink Manufacturers, Jewelers, Laboratory Workers, Landfill Workers, Landscapers, Lumber Processors, Lumber Yard Workers, Metal Recyclers, Metal Sculptors, Nail Technicians, Paint Manufacturers, Residential/Commercial Painters, Pharmaceutical Workers, Plastic Product Manufacturers, Plumbers, Plumbing Supply Manufacturers, Policemen, Potters, Preservative Manufacturers, Food Processors, Cooks, Printers, Search & Rescue Workers, Ship Dock Workers, Smelting Plant Workers, Solderers, Military Soldiers, Tanners, Tattoo Artists, Truck Mechanics, Waste Handlers, Well Diggers.
37. Do you have learning disabilities
38. Do you have frequent headaches
39. Are you prone to stuttering and stammering
40. Do you experience chronic coughing
41. Do you have digestive problems
42. Do you experience mood swings
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43. Are you prone to depression
44. Are you a hay fever sufferer
45. Do you sleep on a mattress containing flame retardants
46. Do you regularly eat broiled, fried or barbequed foods
47. Do you eat less than three servings of fruits and vegetables daily
48. Do you fail to eat whole grain or natural fiber foods daily
49. Do you rarely drink several glasses of pure water daily
50. Do you eat white flour foods and drink sodas often
51. Do you use home cleaning products that contain synthetic chemicals
52. Do you take synthetic vitamins daily or several times a week
53. Do you get less than 30 minutes of exercise daily
54. Are your bowel movements irregular
55. Do you use pesticides on your lawn or garden
56. Do you eat fast food or frozen food at least twice a week
57. Are you more than 20 pounds overweight
58. Have you had cancer, diabetes, heart disease, depression, obesity, liver disease or high blood pressure conditions treated by pharmaceuticals
59. Do you have metal fillings in your teeth
60. Do you take antibiotics twice or more a year
61. Do you use more than one prescription drug a day
62. Have you had surgery that used anesthesia
63. Do you use jaccuzis or hot tubs containing water treated with fluroide and chlorine
64. Do you take hot showers using water treated with fluoride and chlorine
65. Do you use a dishwasher containing tap water at home
If you scored 1-12 you are not very toxic and are doing a great job of staying healthy!
If you scored between 13-25 you are generally toxic.
If you scored 26 and above you are quite toxic. Consider what negative influences you can eliminate from your lifestyle.