Elders

Whereas in our culture we tend to look up to people who have status, power, or money, in a traditional culture these would be looked upon as superficial values. An elder is not someone who is "successful" according to these standards. Rather, they have demonstrated a hard-won wisdom that comes from making personal sacrifices on behalf of their people. They may have little money, but they are rich in experience.

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Sustainability From the Inside Out

True sustainability will only come from “thinking outside the box”—meaning the bone-encased box that sits atop our necks. The mind’s story is necessarily rooted in a sense of separation. Feeling separate, we imagine that if we can control enough of the world around us, we will achieve comfort. Of course such comfort is only fleeting. It is time to re-affirm a different, more ancient story: that of connection. This is the realm of the heart, and its perspective is at the core of all the great spiritual traditions.

 

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Apocalypse - How?

I might as well confirm your worst fears right here: The end is indeed coming! The bad news is that we all are going to die—no question about it. The good news is that this includes everyone, and so we will be in good company (or bad, depending on your view of your fellow humans) and there is no need to worry about favoritism (necrotism?). Whether the end comes en masse on December 21, 2012, or via earthquake, tsunami, or just from some mundane cause such as sheer boredom, old age, or choking on a chicken bone, we are all certainly in for this rather inconvenient turn of events.

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Law of Subtraction

While most people might hesitate to embrace the idea that their thoughts are the source of every personal experience (What of those horrible high school years, the string of divorces, the IRS audit, the traffic accidents, etc?), there is nonetheless a widespread faith that collectively, and with the benefit of science and technology, we humans can create the future we desire. From this standpoint, the law of attraction is merely an extreme expression of much more pervasive modern, Western assumptions about mind, free will, and individual expression. It is not a very big jump from Descartes’ “I think, therefore I am” to the New Age motto “I am what I think.”

 

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Fear Thee Well

I was raised in a family that—even on good days—greets the world with trepidation. Although I cannot recall being given an explicit pre-natal orientation (“Welcome to Earth. Please watch your step! The inhabitants here are prone to wanton acts of violence. Your body is a biological time bomb which is waiting to be ravaged by viruses, bacteria, and/or a host of different cancers. The most basic law of terrestrial physics is: ‘There is always something very bad waiting to happen to you!’”), I seemed to have picked up the message nonetheless. For us, life is an all-too-brief dash through the great cosmic minefield.

 

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