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Archive for May, 2020

Installment 122

April 21 through May 7, 2020

 

I started this piece several weeks ago as a journal entry and thought we might revisit it in the next few days, Beloved. It is currently more than two months since we have been staying safe from the COVID 19 pandemic by staying inside and isolated unless required to lay in groceries or medical supplies. We are all doing fine, although my granddaughter is getting a little cabin fever, wanting to see her friends. Even going to school has come to be viewed as a “treat” in the interim. Of course, her senior year in high school (traditionally a joyous, celebratory time with lots of activities like trips and proms) has been severely disrupted by the current situation, but she is holding up pretty well despite the disappointment. So, I’m going to read through the piece I wrote several weeks ago and see where we are with it, if you don’t mind.

In Installment #103 (June, 2016), we discussed a blog entry entitled, Why Donald Trump is the Best Thing to Ever Happen to America, by Danielle Egnew [https://calltolight.org] which so caught my attention because it echoed one of our earlier Conversations (Installment #75, May 1 through May 15, 2013) very unerringly. [Volume 2, pages 326 through 342.]

In #75, we talked about the AEG “Wrongful Death” Trial and what that trial would show us about ourselves and about our country as a collective. You described the trial as an opportunity to align ourselves with the humane truth or the corporate, expedient view. Most of your children could clearly choose between the viewpoints provided in the discussion. Unfortunately, the outcome of that trial sided with the corporate rather than the humane – the “corporatocracy” of AEG walked away with its assets intact.

From Installment #103, June, 2016:

In her blog entry, Ms. Egnew made a very similar point. She posits that Mr. Trump is on the campaign circuit in order to wake us all up (albeit unconsciously) to the fact that our country has, in recent years, not lived up to its promise.

“Trump gives a name, a face, a resume and a strangely-fitting suit to the ugly stepchild of American Consciousness: Bigotry, fear of change — and the hatred that is born from resentfully stewing these ingredients in repressed silence.”

She states that he “exemplifies everything about America that we pretend does not exist” and that he is “the greatest reality check the Universe could have ever sent to the insulated and naive consciousness running within the USA’s borders.”

“He embodies the bully, the fear of everything outside of our back yard, the deep paranoia associated with the reality that being Caucasian is no longer a free pass for any type of behavior, the crippling resentment and jealousy against women for being the life-bringers, the corporation who buys cheap Chinese steel to erect superstructures on USA soil while sending jobs overseas for dimes on the dollar.”

With this blatant ugliness in the spotlight, showcased by tens of thousands of people, encapsulated brilliantly by a show-stopping performance by Donald Trump, we all have the opportunity to decide who we wish to be, as participants in this conscious growth journey.

Are we the onlookers who say nothing because we fear the wrath of the mob? Do we step away from the consciousness that fans the flames of divisiveness and work together to help place balm on our fears — by discussing them?

Basically, Ms. Egnew is restating your entire premise in Installment #75.

Yes, it’s another opportunity to stand up and be counted, another opportunity to choose a Master, another choice point. Where do you focus your energy? Do you choose fear or love, division or community? Where do you stand? What kind of world do you want to inhabit?

It seems that these opportunities are manifesting at an accelerated rate, which should give major emphasis to the point we have made several times in these dialogs. This time in history represents a major crossroad in consciousness on planet Earth.

The Awakening of an entire planet is an exciting prospect, but it will not be accomplished without some uneasiness. Just keep focusing on opening the world’s leaders, youth, religious clerics, media representatives, and educators with compassion and love with our Change the World daily topics and we will contribute to less disruption and more rapid advancement. We got this!

Yes, I remember both of these dialogs well. It is difficult sometimes to watch as the underbelly of the entertainment industry and/or our society is exposed. It leads to feelings of futility and helplessness. However, the underbelly of most organisms is that organism’s most vulnerable point and it is important to realize that you are not helpless and your efforts are not futile.

You are the dripping tap of light in the darkness. As you know, the steady drip, drip, drip of water has the power to carve out mountains made of granite. From the steady drip, drip, drip of small, individual, insignificant droplets of water was the Grand Canyon formed. It isn’t a quick process, but it is effective. Just keep shining your light and try not to become discouraged. When you feel overwhelmed, take a break, recharge your batteries, and come back feeling stronger.

Just look over your shoulder, honey
I’ll Be There

It is not always a comfortable or pretty picture when we peel away all the layers we have used for centuries to hide uncomfortable truths, but it is the only way to expose and heal wounds that have festered unrecognized for far too long

I had never really considered myself to be particularly, insulated or naïve, Beloved, but I am afraid that I am having to revise that opinion on a fairly regular, even daily, basis.  So, I thought that this would be a good time to evaluate what kinds of truths we have to face about ourselves and our society. We are currently over four years into this administration’s four-year term of office and we are facing another election toward the end of this year. God willing we will not elect another four years of the same kind of incompetence, corruption, dishonesty, and intolerance.

I thought that this would be a good time to take a good, hard look in the collective mirror to discover what we need to become more aware of so that we can make that change that you asked of us so often.

What Truths Have Been Exposed?

First and foremost, I freely admit that I have found myself profoundly shocked at the deep divisions I am discovering in the so-called “United States of America.” I, for one, did not expect the virulence and volatility of the backlash that a minority in this country has displayed against an intelligent, handsome, dignified, powerful African-American man as President of these United States.

Throughout his eight-year term as the leading citizen of the free world, President Barack Obama treated his life partner with the respect an intelligent, beautiful, hard-working woman deserves rather than as heavily botoxed and siliconed “arm candy.” He could boast of no scandals, no indictments, no convictions. He was and still is respected by the international community as a unifier. He and his wife represented the country with dignity, humility, and class on the world stage.

In contrast, this administration has had several people who have been indicted, tried and convicted within the first three years of its four year term, the President, himself, has been impeached, and the President’s business dealings are being investigated in several states, including New York. Recent reports have stated that his real estate deals are being investigated in Scotland.

I honestly thought that we had progressed beyond the racism that this backlash spotlights. Obviously, I was far too complacent. I probably should have known better after witnessing the backlash against you, dear one, even now – a decade after you have discarded your physical manifestation.

I think you can be easily forgiven for your complacency, but I think you are beginning to realize that it was a bit optimistic. A powerful African-American man is feared by certain factions of this society. The more powerful he becomes, the greater the fear. Eventually, he must be “put in his place,” by whatever means are necessary and you are experiencing that in what you called an “infantile jealousy” in our last discussion.

After all, we as a collective don’t like to remember that the United States of America was founded by optimistic, idealistic men, many of whom were wealthy slave owners and traders. This was how many of them became wealthy. It is also how this country became an economic world power. The economy of this country was built on slaves; slaves were viewed as property, to be bred and traded for profit like cattle – not really human, at all. “Liberty and justice for all” meant all who were like them; women were excluded because women were not allowed to own property or vote until very recently on the clock of history. They were totally dominated by the men in their lives.

The capital city of the United States was built on the backs of slaves and on land that had been stolen from the indigenous people of North America, against whom the early settlers committed systematically- legalized genocide which continued until only about one hundred and fifty years ago. Their lands were confiscated, their culture obliterated, their beliefs converted, their language annihilated, and they were forcibly herded onto reservations, like cattle or sheep.

Yes, and only one candidate has had the temerity to address these issues in her campaign. Marianne Williamson announced her intention to run for the Democratic nomination early and, to my knowledge, was unable to secure the boatloads of financial backing required to move forward past the first couple of debates. It should not take billions of dollars to run for public office in this country, but apparently it does. Our democratic elections should not be held hostage to economics.

On the few debate stages on which she was allowed to speak, Ms. Williamson clearly pointed out to the American people that the majority of the problems this country faces stem from a spiritual malaise partly due to its inability to examine, recognize, and acknowledge its guilt and shame over the inhumanity of these two issues. She recommended a collective acknowledgment (at least) and a system of reparations (at best) for the misdeeds of our forefathers in profiting from the propagation of the institution of slavery and the genocide committed against the indigenous people of this continent. I fully supported her and I pray that her words planted some seeds in our collective consciousness that will sprout and grow in future generations. I so admire her courage!

I find the remaining Democratic candidates largely uninspiring. They are career politicians whose campaigns are funded by special interest lobbies or are billionaires in their own right running on their own boatloads of cash. In other words, the election is reduced to an economic transactioin – business as usual. However, Ms. Williamson offered a refreshingly different view – a more spiritually-focused (although not necessarily religious) view – and one that I think we would all do well to consider.

The second uncomfortable truth I have discovered is that our system of checks and balances, which has been highly valued throughout the history of this country, does not protect us from political despotism if our political leaders and policy makers are unwilling to serve the greater good. Our Constitution can easily be over-ridden and ignored if our elected officials are corrupted by power and owe their allegiance to their party, even though they took a sacred oath before the American people to protect and defend, first and foremost, the Constitution of the United States. The concept of our governmental officials actually serving the people in this country is, apparently, out of fashion; the current administration is serving itself, exclusively.

The president can stack the judicial branch, which has historically been tasked with the ability to declare laws or behaviors unconstitutional, with his supporters, rendering it a vapid, ineffectual body that rubber stamps everything he does. The legislative branch in this administration has deemed it acceptable to ignore its oath of impartiality as well as its oath to protect and defend the Constitution in favor of loyalty to its party and the personal cult of this administration.

Everything that I had believed this country stood for has basically gone up in smoke. This has been a difficult realization for me and for many others who have watched all the Republican senators vote to acquit this President when he was overwhelmingly impeached by the House of Representatives. No witnesses were allowed to be called; no documents were allowed to be subpoenaed; and the farcical trial was culminated the night before the State of the Union speech.

Only one man – one Republican – had the moral courage to vote to convict this President against his party line. I am afraid that I had expected better of our elected officials right up until the vote was cast. I had held out hope that four or five of the Republican majority in the Senate would see the damage they were doing to this country and pull back. To my astonishment, there was only one. To say that I was disappointed would be a monumental understatement.

Since that night, the President has actually admitted doing what he was accused of and impeached for in a nationally-televised interview. In addition, he has stated that he has done more for Christianity than Jesus Christ. And no one, to my knowledge, has accused him of having a Messiah-complex among his many other obvious shortcomings.

Basically, there are no rules anymore and he can do anything he wants to do, as he has previously stated. He has free reign. He can allow foreign powers to influence or manipulate our democratic elections and he can run this country as he ran his so called “reality show,” firing, discrediting, or threatening anyone who opposes him. Furthermore, he is taking full advantage by meddling in sentencing decisions for his convicted cronies, pardoning his convicted campaign contributors, and firing national security, healthcare experts, ambassadors, and law enforcement officials who have opposed him.

In the face of this global pandemic, he has shown a complete lack of empathy, blamed it on a Democratic Party “hoax,” blocked states acquiring medical supplies, encouraged protests against the states that have shutdown to save lives. He is much more concerned with re-opening for economic reasons and cares little about the cost of human lives. Daily doses of his rhetoric (which have turned into little more than campaign rallies with little factual or re-assuring information being addressed) have been blocked by national broadcast media news organizations, like CNN.

The fact that this administration has any supporters is one that I can’t even wrap my mind around, but he does. In other words, we are a much more deeply divided nation than I could have ever imagined as little as five years ago.

Some Republicans have actually stated on national media broadcasts that grandparents should be willing to sacrifice their lives (by ignoring public health guidelines) for their children’s and grandchildren’s economic health. Several of them think that’s a fair trade. One hundred thousand lives has been suggested as a fair price for economic stability.

Those are human beings they are talking about. When did human life become a bargaining chip?

I tell you, my sweet King, some of these truths I really don’t want to know.

Yes, it is a difficult realization when you see that “they don’t really care about us.” It is disappointing; but it is also clarifying. Some of these truths are very uncomfortable to look at, but they cannot be healed any other way.

Thirdly, this period of isolation has highlighted the woeful inadequacy of our current healthcare system and, by extension, the health insurance industry in the face of crisis. From day one, there has been a concerted effort to erase everything President Obama enacted to protect our environment and the health of our citizens in a petty display of the “infantile jealousy” to which we have previously referred. In the early years of this administration, public health organizations put in place to deal with just such a pandemic during the Obama years were dismantled and their experts fired from their advisory functions.

As a result, this country was unprepared and lacked a united, coordinated, and responsible response. Of course, this administration did nothing but blame the situation on the “Chinese virus,” and a “hoax” to defeat the Republican ticket in the upcoming election, further confusing the general public with misinformation and propaganda.

New York has been the hardest hit in this health crisis and Governor Cuomo has taken to the airwaves with factual, responsible daily updates, which cast into even starker contrast the President’s daily “campaign” briefings about how smart he is and how well he is doing as President.

Life on Planet Earth, and particularly in the US, is a circus, with clowns in all the wrong places.

20171122_111640.jpg

Where I would be if I didn’t have you to escape with in the midst of all this craziness? I freely admit that the “escapism” you so often referred to in your music and interviews has become a literal lifeline in these times of uncertainty.

You are there
Like the laughter of a child
When I need just a smile
Suddenly the sun shines
For a while 

It is evenings like this, when I return to my little sanctuary after spending much of the day with my family, that I realize how blessed I am to know that “You Are There,” ready and able to escape with me into a world where there is no corruption, no contamination, no pandemic – a place where we can just let all that go and just be together. I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t have that reassurance and that escapism at the beginning and ending of every day. And our little “reality checks” at Neverland Valley Ranch at about mid-day are a lifeline as well.

[Josh Groban and Jan sing to Michael.]

When I am down
And oh my soul so weary
When troubles come
And my heart burdened be
Then I am still
And wait here in the silence
Until you come and sit a while with me
You raise me up
So I can stand on mountains
You raise me up
To walk on stormy seas
I am strong when I am on your shoulders
You raise me up
To more than I can be

One of the things I have noticed in the past three or four weeks is an incremental increase in the number of mental “images” I have been able to appreciate throughout my day, but particularly when listening to your voice. As many of my regular readers know, I have historically felt myself unable to dream … or imagine due to a lack of mental pictures dating back to my childhood; and have often held myself back with self talk reinforcing that I have little to no imagination.

However, in the past several weeks, “mental pictures,” the stuff dreams are made of, seem to be dropping in on me more frequently. For example, when I am listening deeply to your voice, I often get brief flashes of you performing the song in one of the many concerts and performances I have on DVD. Or if I am aiming to heal an ache or pain, I can visualize the muscles relaxing and the inflammation receding. During my Neverland power naps, I am able to see brief snapshots of the lakes and spouts, the beautiful, colorful flowerbeds bursting with love, the golden mountain, and Ryan’s bridge. I’ve even had a few dreams!

I had spent over sixty years of this life believing that I had no imagination and making excuses and in the last few years the mental pictures have come back with a wollop.

Yes, as I promised in our earlier conversation. Those muscles had sort of atrophied. We just needed to exercise them a little and give them permission to return. Our earlier visualization exercises have begun to heal the atrophied image creator in your brain.

As I told you at the time, these things take time. Just keep practicing. Always remember: practice, practice, practice until you get it right … and then practice some more until you get it beautiful!

 

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