Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Law of the Mind

Let your mind start a journey thru a strange new world. Leave all thoughts of the world you knew before. Let your soul take you where you long to be...Close your eyes let your spirit start to soar and you'll live as you've never lived before. – Erich Fromm

The Law of the Mind identifies the need to bring harmony to all aspects of the mind and to learn to operate through the part of the mind which is influenced by the Universal Consciousness.  As the mystics down through the ages have said, man and the Cosmic Intelligence or God’s mind are one; and it is this mind that is influenced by your thoughts and speech.  The problem is man spends his time in words and thoughts which provide a negative return on its investment.  
Your mind is not a single entity, and in reality it is comprised of quite a few minds.  It is these fragmentary parts of the mind that keep you locked into a false sense of reality.   Through the use of your own mind, you tend to operate schizophrenically on the outer edge of your life believing that the facts presented to you throughout the day are reality.  It is why in the morning you awaken full of love and by the evening you are filled with unloving thoughts if not downright anger. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

What is Culture?

We Are One
Pencil Sketch by Beverly Blanchard
It is word we hear every day.  People use it to identify and define themselves.  It is used to differentiate ourselves from other groups of people.  It is used in corporations as in the corporate culture.  There is fashion culture, music culture, art culture, language culture, heritage culture, folk culture, sexual culture, gender culture, community culture, drug culture...the list can go onto to infinity and yet it is a word which seems divide and separates us.

We fight over culture.  We blame other cultures for the plights within the world.  We use culture as a comparison mechanism.  My culture is better than your culture.  We define people based on imaginary little lines stroked across Planet Earth.  On this side of the line you are from that culture, and the people on that side of the line are from this culture.   We use culture as a word to instill fear and suggest that someone else’s culture will destroy us.  We stamp children at birth with a culture and tell them this is who they are and who they will be for the rest of their life.  We create stereotypes about the various cultures, and pigeonhole people. We hide behind culture and sometimes we use culture for the economic and social benefits.

Yet what exactly is culture?  Who defines it?  Who owns the culture?  Who speaks for a whole culture?  Is there such a thing as a whole culture? Do all the people under the umbrella of a particular culture all think the same?  What happens when you grow up and discover that the culture you are born into and the beliefs you accepted are no longer valid to your life?  Is there really such a thing as cultural appropriation?  Who creates the cultural road show and sanctions the changes within the culture? 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Law of Compassion

A Boy and His Dog
Photograph by Beverly Blanchard
The proper aim of giving is to put the recipients in a state where they no longer need our gifts. — C.S. Lewis (The Four Loves, 1960)

Compassion, it is a buzz word that has been used for eons.  Politicians toss the word into their speeches to gain favor with the electorate.  The corporate world engages in cause related marketing to give the impression that they care about their communities.  Some even ensure us the money raised through these various events is given good causes.  Religious institutions talk about the compassion for their fellow man as they pass around the collection plate.  Charitable organizations use slogans to guilt you into giving.  Give or run for the cause because it shows you care.  We have somehow come to be a society who associates giving money with compassion.
On a more personal level, there are many people who believe feeling pity for someone or something means they are exhibiting compassionate behavior.  We give to the local panhandler because the giving somehow appeases our guilty conscience.  Yet compassion laced with pity almost always has its roots in guilt and fear, and carries a sense of condescension. For some there is even a smug feeling of “I’m glad it’s not me.”