Tag Archives: life

There is a Book

[thoughts from   ~burning woman~   ]

With so many comments either set aside or poorly answered; with the fantasy novel (finished, by the way) waiting to be posted on the blog and my job appointment book filling up, the last thing I need is another post stirring up more controversy.

Still, I must live up to my reputation. I’ve been called a lot of things over the years, few complimentary, recently an anarchist (which I consider a compliment) and a contrarian (which is akin to a trouble maker for no good reason and that’s not a compliment, not even with green eggs and ham, Sam I Am) while all I’m doing is questioning everything. Why do I do that? Because everything should be questioned and it’s the task of any intelligent individual to do so.

Nothing should ever be taken for granted, accepted without proof, or dismissed as of no consequence even when its track record screams: “I’m going to destroy your civilization, with yourself and yours in it!” We’re so used to seeing the writing on the wall these days, we just call it graffiti and turn away shrugging, smiling or laughing.

There’s a book that is titled: “Solutions to all Problems” and it’s the only book you can find in any library. It’s the only book you get when you enter grade one, the only book you will receive subsequently until you finish your stint in high school, college or university. The only book you will ever read. It’s the book all institutions use, including the United Nations. It might even surprise you to discover that it’s the only book Donald Trump has ever attempted to read… in pop-up format.

That book has millions of titles, one of the best known is the Bible, of course. It has millions of introductions and millions of ways wherein the contents are filled in. It’s a wonderful book. I see it here, or at least excerpts of it, on Word Press all the time.

The reason this book is so popular and acceptable is simple: it doesn’t actually contain any real solution to anything at all. That’s its purpose: to propose solutions that are based on ideas hatched by dead smart guys, or interpreters of dead smart guys, or people who figgered out a way to cash in on dead smart guys ideas. It rehashes failed “solutions” to any and every problem without an iota of shame for doing this. It’s like watching an ever-running soap opera, you know, the “people with no lives watching people with fake lives” sort of book.

So try to imagine somebody (like me for example) saying that the book is fake; that it should be burned, not banned, good Lord no, never banned, that would only make it more popular! Burned. Discarded. Ashes to ashes and dust to dust. An end to it.

Then, lo and behold, we would be free to write an entirely new book and none of the contents would be based on the old “Solutions to all Problems” fantasy.

Having said that, I’ve been having thoughts about fascism and Nazism, including Zionism, lately. My thoughts ran on the question: why have these horrible anti-life, anti-human ideologies become so powerful and popular in the last century and increasingly so in this one?

There was a simple answer: Darwinism. Of course. Darwinism denies the humanity of man. It claims that man is just another evolved critter that crawled out of the much and mire some million years ago and joined in the race to dominate. It brushes off any attempt at dialogue regarding human behaviour such as morals, virtues and vices, the sense of what is right and what is wrong.

That sort of religion was custom made for fascists, Nazis and Zionists. It claims we live in a world strictly ruled by the survival of the fittest. How that fittest becomes fittest is irrelevant, all that matters is, the fittest must make it to the top of the pyramid of power and control. It’s nature, you see? If you question that you’re insane, of course.

If that means cruelly exploiting, oppressing, or murdering millions, so be it. There is nothing wrong in exercising one’s supremacy any way it works. It’s nature’s food chain. None of what you do to change that has any meaning, nor can it succeed.

That’s the essence of Darwinism.

Now, ask me why I would hate even the mention of such a religion, and make no mistake, it is a religion. It is designed to fool to numbties into thinking that when they switch from worshiping the infamous Jehovah to worshiping Superiority through race, misogyny, imperial subjugation or financial shenanigans, they are “atheists” and are cleansed from the curse of religiosity!

Just another title to The Book. The contents are always the same.

Your call!


Part 3 – Message from Tara

This is part 3 of 3 of my “message from Tara” or message in a bottle from 1000 years into our possible/likely future. As Tara and the Teachers have made clear to me many times, this foreseeable future isn’t written in stone. We certainly have the power to cause a massive rift in the Matrix and change everything. How would that affect Tara and her world, her civilization as described here? It doesn’t matter, it’s the future. All it means is I’d get another bottle from the future  with an entirely different message.  Anyway, enjoy this last part.

Legacy of the Great Death: It feels wonderful to interact so freely, so expansively, with everything and everyone. It’s something you never really get used to; something you could never take for granted. You see, we all “remember” the past; where we come from and what we’ve been through to get here. This, in part, is what pushes us forward. We are ever anxious to leave the old ways behind forever, including this earth. None of us, of those who have lived to create this new era, would ever again desire to experience the past firsthand.

We live a most wonderful life and our all-encompassing passion is to better this life and spread it out in the universe. We know we have something good; that we have earned it; paid for it with blood that will never dry; that our knowledge can be of great help to others when we find them. We also know that we have outgrown Terra and that she wishes for us to be gone so she can ponder mothering another pseudo-ISSA species.

The Great Death shocked us out of our lethargic complicity towards the earth and all the oppressed on it. It gave us a painful new awareness of the meaning of life.

First, there was so much death we thought we were going to die off completely.

We came back to life, were “born again” as a species. We went from despair, to acceptance, to compassion for all that remained.

We mourned openly and loudly. In the end we had to confess our guilt and our responsibilities for all that befell us and the innocents we destroyed in our wake.

We dis-enfranchised all our so-called leaders who had led us to the Death with their greed, lasciviousness and blind ignorance.

We grew to rely strictly on one-another. We rejected all central authority.

We took charge of our social re-structuring.

We matured in heart and mind beyond anything this world had seen of us.

Then “they” came.  Not to save us, not to rescue, not to pity, but to help.  When we asked why now, they said,

“We heard your cries and saw your tears.  We feel that your change is genuine enough.  You have matured enough we can risk helping you.  We will decide by how much and in what way.”

So we formed bonds with our star families.  But not everything was good.  Some Earthians believed the star people were demonic invaders and there were killings.  But we learned from them that compassion is worth sacrificing one’s life for.  They did not retaliate nor abandon us. They were more careful and we still suffer painful distance from those early encounters.

Questions and more questions: As my mind searches for new questions to ask about the future I wonder about the really distant ones we “know” from our astral travel research but have yet to meet.  What are they like to meet corporeally on their own worlds? What would it be like living with them? What more can they teach us?  I feel an almost painful longing to get going. That is why I interact with the space drive engineers every moment I can spare. Looking for the “secret” to cross-galactic travel – worm holes, space-folding, time/space distortion, stacks, not only of nested worlds, but of universes and multi-verses, dimensional gates – whatever will serve.  We have to get out there.

It’s as if there is a call from “them” to us. I can feel this every day. It’s not just natural empathy, it’s something else, something new. Sometimes I image “them” coming to us in space-folding ships to take us, or some of us, to their homes in distant galaxies. I know I would not hesitate for one moment to go with them.

Don’t start imagining for a moment that I, as an individual, am particularly intelligent, smart or brilliant. On the scale of intelligence here, I’m actually below average. That’s why I am so well suited to my choice of purpose. It’s also why I’m so desperate to learn; to understand, however much of our current technology escapes me. I’m more of a mind-sharer; a healer. I experience a thrill in my heart when I know I’ve touched someone and made him or her feel better about their life in general. Empathy, that’s what I “do” best. I’m what is considered to be a very ordinary human, but see? I’m considered human: I’ve (we’ve!) made it! Wooeee, girl!

The Supracity as starship: Our supracity concept already anticipates the possibility we may develop a “field” of such energy that it will wrap a supracity entirely in a bubble to become a star ship carrying tens of millions of lives into space – a common enough idea even in the science-fiction of your time, but much more likely to happen with us. The supracity is self-sustaining and could survive in space for eons, “docking” here and there to refuel from gases and minerals.

Or, all the Supras (there are now a dozen of those that encompass the entire human species of earth) could join into a man-made world, a mini-system called a wheel-world, totally self-sustaining. While this is likely what will happen, I do not support that idea.  Too much like the nation-state again.  Too much like “us” on this spoke of the wheel versus “them” on that spoke with a kind of “united nations” complex at the centre of our world to meaninglessly and powerlessly adjudicate “world” issues. Back to central government?

Not again!  Not ever again! That is the only thing I fear, this recidivism, and why I want to leave our species behind forever. If it happens, I don’t want to see it and I certainly don’t want to be a part of it.

Nevertheless, try to imagine a dozen supracities lifting off the planet simultaneously – every man, woman and child, every ISSA but a few thousand observers to remain until their task is complete.  So, what are we talking about here?  Perhaps the greatest mass exodus of humanity of any world or time – entirely leaving a home world by consensus, by singular choice – not by force – when much less drastic possibilities or choices still exist.

For example, we could remain on our home world and trust ourselves enough to return “to the land” so to speak without returning to being exploiters or predators. We could opt to pioneer new worlds within the galaxy now being terraformed in anticipation of human habitation (not necessarily Earthian!). We could, theoretically, simply leave our bodies to Terra and release ourselves entirely from physicality or dependence on data storage and just “vanish” into and beyond “space” to enrich First Mind (if such exists – and only in doing this could we know.  We could also be committing genocide). All possibilities, all choices.  But for us (that is, you and I – me!) I know it will always be the stars.

I must tell you that “time” no longer controls us. We determine its passage, how much of “it” we will use up in working out a problem.  What you call a “day” in your artificial time measurement could be a hundred years here, or vice-versa. No one here ages unless they want to look the part.  Our minds, of course, age as they expand and become ever wiser and filled with more understanding and knowledge. That sort of aging is always a good thing: it leads to more life, not less. Now remember this: you can practice that in your own “time.” Teach yourself to run on two or more “time frames” simultaneously. The more you do it, the better you will become at it. You will need that skill soon enough.

Back to the day – the Function – “Hi honey, I’m home!”: The place where I’m booked is a giant hotel/office complex with entire sections of floors dedicated to permanent residency for those working here.  My destination is one of the residences where I am to meet the man with whom I will interact and accompany for the next several days, a high-level bionics engineer. I am greeted by the checker who validates my ID and enters it at my destination. As I expected, he escorts me to the elevator and becomes easily familiar – with my encouragement. I relay my thoughts on an answer I picked up for an enhanced space drive. He frowns. “I think” (he picts as he stands behind me and holds me) “your idea would work on a star ship but not inter-galactically. I see problems with force field generation – much stress on biological forms. Perhaps it could be done using robots, drones or androids to do the work while the humans are kept in cryogenic suspension, but any biological complex would be damaged or destroyed. And we haven’t solved the time problem.  Think about it and I’ll meet you (meaning in mind) at our next sharing session.” I touch him gently, lightly and kiss him-it’s expected as a kind of tip-on the lips. There is no possessiveness in our exchange – just a perfectly natural exchange of bodily energies – a balancing. I slip through the irised opening into a grav-well and I am taken to my floor.  “Hi honey, I’m home!”

Subject – temp morphing: I should tell you a little of our abilities to “temp” morph, or change our basic body shapes for an assignment.  For example, if the woman requested of the agency is, say, a blond Scandinavian and none is available, my auto-surgeon can perform minor alterations and activate enhancements that can change me to be such a person. It is also possible to acquire a working use of any current earth language in less than one hour. I could perform a one, maximum two-day function as a perfect Scandinavian type without problems, complete with affected accent should I be required to verbalize one. Of course those who call for me are informed that their provider is an enhanced model and that her morphing is only good for the specified amount of time, after which it must be removed.

The agency becomes the fairy godmother and Cinderella is Swedish until the clock strikes midnight… then back to the fireplace coals, the soot and rags?  I think not…

Bottom line is, in all of this we no longer have secrets of one-another, nor can we who have evolved and learned from the Death, harm or hurt another in thought, word or deed.  If anyone has any thing another needs, it is offered.  That’s what it means to be human today. Exceptions, yes, but few and declining. Compare that to your times.

And that is what we always wanted to achieve, wasn’t it? So take comfort in knowing that despite the horrors your times have yet to endure, we have succeeded. We are well on the way to gain what we longed for. And when we break free of our transportation limitations, we will have so much more when we share this with other ISSA beings… out there, beyond our own stars. Perhaps it may even be possible to corporeally travel into the past, to “you” as this message did. Interesting thought, don’t you think? We could function as identical twins. I’ll call us “Youme”!

Closing comments: Are we happy?  The concept has lost its meaning for us (and doubtless it never really had any meaning for your times either – the term is a social convenience) because it is subjective and whimsical. I suppose we are happy to be questing for an ever-better future, whatever the dangers we face. We know we cannot turn back. But our quest is not stoic. We explore and share as much within as without and we exchange much laughter and banter – except we never laugh “at” anymore – only “with.” Please note the distinction and remember this next time you observe some comedian of your day making “jokes” – note how much of it depends on belittling someone, something in any number of ways that can elicit crudely unguarded laughter. The step from this to murder is so short, it hardly exists.

Wonder not why you are not evolving, either mentally or physically. When the mind goes stagnant, the body goes into decline because it is not respected.

I don’t know about being happy. I do know this: we know joy because we have known the greatest of sorrow. We are a joyful people.

Have we given up too much to gain too little? I don’t think so. I think that when we consciously, as a species, not a race, decided to leave our parochial, racist, patriarchal thinking behind, that what we lost and what we are going to abandon is nothing compared to what we are about to gain… We are not only going to discover new (to us!) worlds, galaxies, universes even, but our search has re-awakened what was lost in the dark ages of earth: God in infinity.

What that means I can’t say for certain but I know that I too must “touch the face of God.” I’ve always maintained that we are not God – such a thought is ludicrous – but we were originally designed (purposefully engineered to my way of thinking) to seek and to find. But not “where” nor “when” – not here, not there, but everywhere, though no such place exists until it is found – for it is spirit.

We survived our apocalypse. We have given up many false beliefs to become essentially a real people under an umbrella of true spirituality. From body, to mind, to spirit, we ever ascend following the sine wave of life.

And now to close, as our friend YLea taught us: “As below, so above.”

I realize now what she meant. From “here” I create “there.” From my present I make my future. From below I make the above. From whatever ingredients, recipe and heat setting I use, that is what I must expect to get out of the oven. If I put potatoes in, I cannot expect to pull out an apple pie.

As you say in your time, be well and don’t lose heart in your coming and certain trials. Remember I am the proof that you are strong enough to go through the coming tribulations and become the healer you always wanted to be.

Our future is: always.

Your alter-ego, Tara EarthStar or “Tess”

Short glossary:

Function – All humans with physical (corporeal) form must have a function that can only be performed in physical form deemed of value to the entire polis to qualify for corporeality.

*ISSA – Intelligent Sentient Self Aware, as defining a true human.

grav-well or grav-transport: force fields of traction beams used for horizontal or vertical transport to any part of a supracity, all part of the city’s self-contained energy grid.

Supracity: megalopolis – the singular city of a territory or region. A region or territory can only have one city.

Partials: Duplicate projection of an original human (or any ISSA) representing the original and operated by a part of the original’s mind – hence the term.

Grabber the Cancer Cell

[a short story by ~burning woman~ ]

When little Grabber Gulp was born, he was adored by all. Some even said he was the cutest little Cancer cell they had ever seen. He was a jolly little cell who enjoyed his food immensely. Momma Gulp was so very proud of her little Cancer she took him everywhere to show him to everyone she knew.

These were good times for Grabber. That was some time ago.

Grabber grew and became aware of his world, or “host” as his fellow Cancers called it and as his teachers insisted he labeled it. As he learned Cancer history, Grabber Gulp became introspective and tried to understand his species versus the one his “host” consisted of. He explored some of the more populated parts of the host in his neighbourhood. It began to dawn on him that there were simply too many Cancers upon it and inside it. He began to feel the unease, then the pain, Cancers caused the host. This troubled him though he could not be sure why.

The Gulps were quite well-off, as Cancers consider such, so Grabber was encouraged to further his education. Being quite bright for a Cancer, they sent him to the best Cancer universities. Grabber learned quickly. He soon understood how everything in his civilization was interconnected and designed strictly for exponential growth. He grasped the concept that if his civilization ever sought to balance itself; to stop expanding and change to a *steady state of non material growth, it would die.

What Grabber also came to realize was that the opposite was equally true: that if his species continued to expand exponentially at the expense of its host, it would simply overwhelm the host’s ability to maintain itself in a state that would feed and support his species. The host, he reasoned from his studies and personal observations, was actually dying and it was the Cancers that were the cause of it.

Further studies showed that many scientists all over the host were aware of the problem but were not allowed to talk about it. They were charged with finding solutions to the threatened end of the Cancers should something terrible happen to the host.

Some were attempting to discover means whereby the Cancers could be propelled across space into a new host. Others believed that the Cancer civilization could be balanced; that a substantial population of Cancers, ideally the current one, could survive on the current host if certain areas of the host’s anatomy were declared reserves, or preserves, just enough so the host wouldn’t die.

Grabber wasn’t impressed with any of that.

“The problem we’re faced with,” said Grabber Gulp to a group of students he had become spokesperson for, “is that too many Cancers believe the host’s resources are practically infinite and capable of accommodating a lot more Cancer population. Too many believe that if we dig deeper, literally or not; if we develop more esoteric technology we can extract more resources in places our species had never even known existed. We can feed all the Cancers on this host and much, much more. We’re the intelligent species here, and we rule the host.

This hubris, people, is going to be the end of our civilization, and of ourselves. When our host dies, we die.”

That sort of talk didn’t go well at all in Grabber’s world. Predictably he lost his tenure at the university where he’d begun teaching. As he was leaving he was warned by the president to watch what he said from now on.

Until now grabber had spent his entire life on an area of the host called the “Left-Breast.” It was an affluent area of the host and Grabber realized no one was going to support him in his crusade to make Cancers understand the danger they were in as long as things continued reasonably well. He decided to emigrate to a much more crowded and poorer area of the host called the “Right Thigh.”

On his very arrival the conditions he observed there totally shocked him. There was mass starvation as the area had been overcrowded and stripped of resources for some time. Cancers were dying everywhere but that wasn’t the worst of it. The entire Right Thigh was itself dying. The blood was so badly infected that many Cancers were dying of thirst and a host of diseases they didn’t even have names for. The smell of death was everywhere.

Grabber realized that what was happening on and in the Right Thigh was soon going to happen to his home area. Unable to do anything to alleviate conditions in the Right Thigh he returned to his home, determined to prevent a complete physical collapse and death of the Left Breast. He began a series of lectures, showing videos and documentaries he had smuggled out of the Right Thigh along with his own pictures of hundreds, even thousands, of dead and dying Cancers along the blood vessels.

One night as he pondered his next speech in a hotel room, the door was forced open and a dozen police Cancers pounced on him, threw a black bag over his head and dragged him downstairs and into a waiting vehicle. He was taken to an interrogation center where he was tortured and drugged. In his torpor he signed a document stating that everything he’d claimed to have seen was lies; that his documentaries and videos were the fabrications of Right Thigh terrorists who wanted to destroy the economy of the Left Breast.

After he signed the document, Grabber was thrown head first into an incinerator.

(For some thoughts on “steady state economy” see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steady-state_economy)


In Love Again

[a poem, by Sha’Tara]

Did I really say
I’ll never fall in love again?
Never marry someone truly special?
Did I say that?
Oh but I lied didn’t I?
I didn’t know I was lying,
of course not.
I was sure,
I meant what I said that day
When I walked out of that office,
the lawyer had pronounced,
‘You are officially divorced.’
what did I feel
but an overwhelming a sense of relief
and we laughed in the restaurant
over a quiet dinner.

The years went swiftly by
in my big empty house.
I hardly noticed
the fading paint;
the heater making more noise.
Some lights burned out
I left them
I didn’t need them, did I?
There were so many other rooms
where the children had been:
I just needed to dust
and change the sheets
on one small bed.

But now I must confess
I’ve fallen in love again
and I’m going to marry.
This time I’m sure
it’s not a mistake.
This time I give up
this time I don’t look back;
this time
when I say, ’till death do us part’
I won’t be lying
my new lover,
and I do love him,
is death.



Revolt of the Robots – monbiot.com

Revolt of the Robots – monbiot.com

Some great and positive thoughts from George Monbiot about the benefits of volunteering (and not incidentally also another “warning” about the growing “evil” behind the Amazon corporation run by Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world at $90 billion)

Revolt of the Robots

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 01:01 AM PST

How we can find meaning, purpose and pride when the workplace no longer offers them

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 7th February 2018


Why bother designing robots when you can reduce human beings to machines? Last week, Amazon acquired a patent for a wristband that can track the hand movements of workers. If this technology is developed, it could grant companies almost total control over their workforce.

A fortnight ago the Guardian interviewed a young man called Aaron Callaway, who works nights in an Amazon warehouse. He has to place 250 items an hour into the right carts. His work, he says, is so repetitive, antisocial and alienating that “I feel like I’ve lost who I was … My main interaction is with the robots.” And this is before the wristbands might be deployed.

I see the terrible story of Don Lane, the DPD driver who collapsed and died from diabetes, as another instance of the same dehumanisation. After being fined £150 by the company for taking a day off to see his doctor, this “self-employed contractor” (who worked full-time for the company and wore its uniform) felt he could no longer keep his hospital appointments. As the philosopher Byung-Chul Han argues, in the gig economy, “every individual is master and slave in one … class struggle has become an internal struggle with oneself.”

Everything work offered during the social democratic era – economic security, a sense of belonging, social life, a political focus – has been stripped away: alienation is now almost complete. Digital Taylorism, splitting interesting jobs into tasks of mind-robbing monotony, threatens to degrade almost every form of labour. Workers are reduced to the crash dummies of the post-industrial age. The robots have arrived, and you are one of them.

So where do we find identity, meaning and purpose, a sense of autonomy, pride and utility? The answer, for many people, is volunteering. Over the past few weeks, I’ve spent a fair bit of time in the NHS, and I’ve realised that there are two public health systems in this country: the official one, performing daily miracles, and the voluntary network that supports it.

Everywhere I look, there are notices posted by people helping at the hospital, running support groups for other patients, raising money for research and equipment. Without this support, I suspect the official system would fall apart.

And so would many of the patients. Some fascinating research papers suggest that positive interactions with other people promote physical healing, reduce physical pain, and minimise anxiety and stress for patients about to have an operation. Support groups save lives. So do those who raise money for treatment and research.

Last week I spoke to two remarkable volunteers. Jeanne Chattoe started fundraising for Against Breast Cancer after her sister was diagnosed with the disease. Until that point, she had lived a quiet life, bringing up her children and working in her sister’s luggage shop. She soon discovered powers she never knew she possessed. Before long, she started organising an annual fashion show which, across 13 years, raised almost £400,000. Then, lying awake one night, she had a great idea: why not decorate her home town pink once a year, recruiting the whole community to the cause? Witney in the Pink has now been running for 17 years, and all the shops participate: even the butchers dye their uniforms pink. The event raises at least £6000 a year.

“It’s changed my whole life,” Jeanne told me. “I eat, live and breathe against breast cancer … I don’t know what I would have done without fundraising. Probably nothing. It’s given me a purpose.” She has acquired so much expertise organising these events that in 2009 Against Breast Cancer appointed her chair of its trustees, a position she still holds today.

After his transplant, Kieran Sandwell donated his old heart to the British Heart Foundation. Then he began thinking about how he could support its work. He told me he had “been on the work treadmill where I’ve not enjoyed my job for years, wondering what I’m doing.” He set off to walk the entire coastline of the UK, to raise money and awareness. He now has 2800 miles behind him and 2000 ahead. “I’ve discovered that you can actually put your mind to anything. … whatever I come across in my life I can probably cope with it. Nothing fazes me now.”

Like Jeanne, he has unlocked unexpected powers. “I didn’t know I had in me the ability just to be able to talk to anyone.” His trek has also ignited a love of nature. “I seem to have created this fluffy bubble: what happens to me every day is wonderful. … I want to try to show people that there’s a better life out there.”

For Jeanne and Kieran, volunteering has given them what work once promised: meaning, purpose, place, community. This, surely, is where hope lies.

So here’s my outrageous proposal: replace careers advice with volunteering advice. I’ve argued before that much of the careers advice offered by schools and universities is worse than useless, shoving students headfirst into the machine, reinforcing the seductive power of life-destroying corporations. In fairness to the advisers, their job is becoming almost impossible anyway: the entire infrastructure of employment seems designed to eliminate fulfilling and fascinating work.

But while there is little chance of finding jobs that match students’ hopes and personalities and engage their capabilities, there is every chance of connecting them with good opportunities to volunteer. Perhaps it is time we saw volunteering as central to our identities and work as peripheral: something we have to do, but that no longer defines us. I would love to hear people reply, when asked what they do, “I volunteer at the food bank and run marathons. In my time off, I work for money.”

And there’s a side-effect. The world has been wrecked by people seeking status through their work. In many professions – such as fossil fuels, weapons manufacture, banking, advertising – your prestige rises with the harm you do. The greater your destruction of other people’s lives, the greater your contribution to shareholder value. But when you volunteer, the respect you gain rises with the good you do.

We should keep fighting for better jobs and better working conditions. But the battle against workplace technology is an unequal one. The real economic struggle now is for the redistribution of wealth generated by labour and machines, through universal basic income, the revival of the commons and other such policies. Until we achieve this, most people will have to take whatever work is on offer. But we cannot let it own us.


Throwing away the Key

[thoughts from ~burning woman~ by Sha’Tara

There are days, as today for example, when I would like to get dressed warm enough for the weather, carefully slip my purse over my shoulders, look around to make sure everything is in its proper place, walk out the front door of my house, lock it, and without looking back, walk away. Walk until the road crosses that little bridge under which flows the small river that was my companion, lo these many years, and throw in the key.

Then just walk on.

The direction now is no longer important. Walking will get me the farthest because it will cost less. I could take the bus but they confuse me so much. A taxi I cannot afford. Walking then. As I walk I can notice my world as I have never seen it with so much intensity.

I can imagine already seeing snowdrops popping up in someone’s front yard under a Japanese maple with its lovely orange branches.

I can see robins flitting about under the influence of a Spring that is just around February’s corner. As I continue, farther from town and into the farm lands, horses and cattle are already roaming the fields. It’s Saturday so children too have come out of their homes to play in greening yards or on paved driveways. There is less and less traffic here.

The road that chose me takes me along another small river, more of a drainage system than a river, really. Here and there where in the wider sections ducks actively seek for food. There are the small divers such as buffleheads, hooded mergansers and golden eyes. There are the dabblers, mallards and widgeons, who plunge their heads into the murky depths then pop up again like battery-operated toys. Black willows and cottonwoods lean over the ponds, some of their branches and trunks broken in a Winter ice storm angling down into the dark waters revealing oily reflections.

Overhead flock after flock of Glaucous-winged gulls fly. They too are on their way to feed. By there direction it’s easy to tell they’re going to the landfill for their daily feast.

You may wonder why I haven’t mentioned the many sounds emanating from such a scene. To tell the truth, it’s my hearing. It isn’t as good as it used to be. There was a time I remember when I could pin-point the location of a tiny golden-crowned kinglet in a tall cottonwood by its weak call, ‘tsit-tsit-tsit’ repeated. Still I can hear louder calls, Canada geese coming in for a landing on one of those ponds formed of brackish waters and in a backyard, a chainsaw; someone busy cutting up firewood.

I hear a baby crying as a mother is putting it in the backseat of the family’s SUV. I think, what a world, that a baby has to ride out of sight of its mother and turned so it cannot see anything. There is evil at work at every level of this man’s world and it’s called ‘security’ and ‘safety’ yet the more of that there is, the less there actually is.

That brings me back to the beginning of my thought-wanderings. There is something calling me that this life which I’ve taken to observe more the less I desire to participate in, is preventing me from responding to. That troubles me because how do I know, how can I know, if the calling is not more important than the staying? How can I know the calling will wait for me, for my ambivalence resulting from my decision not to walk out on the ephemeral comfort of a house and throw away the key today?

I know about callings. I’ve had quite a few in this one life alone. If they are not responded to, they go on to someone else and later I read about them, some famous, some both, famous and martyred.  I cannot know if they changed the world but they expressed a courage I chose not to.

If I did leave my house today and threw away the key, would I find such courage? Is it too late and should I just wait?

It’s been raining, it seems, forever and looking out the window I can tell the sun is going to, once again valiantly try to break through the endless clouds and once again, fail.

I’m going to make a fresh pot of coffee and answer some emails, then we’ll see about throwing away the key.

The Shared Mind

a vision, by Sha’Tara]

It is difficult at times to determine if a vision is good or bad. I suppose it can be argued that it’s all on how it makes you feel, or the effect the memory of it has. In any case you may find the following entertaining, interesting, perhaps even intriguing. Perhaps you even know what this is all about.  Perhaps this is also a part of your reality.

There was a girl on the street. A quite ordinary looking girl in scuffed runners, faded jeans and an oversized blue sweat shirt. Her dark hair was tied in a loose pony tail. How old was she? You don’t ask a woman her age.

She was kneeling by a broken vase someone had heaved out of an open window.  It’s possible it had simply fallen. There were stems of dried, long dead flowers scattered all around, and some spots of rust coloured liquid spattered the cement under the broken pieces.   Water or blood?

I watched this girl very carefully, though she could not see me. I was using a wide power pole to hide behind so I could observe the scene without disturbing anything, neither her thoughts nor her movements.

She picked up the broken vase, and carefully held it as she arranged the pieces so it would look as if it was still in one piece. It had been painted over with a cheap imitation of mother-of-pearl. So, rule out the possibility that it had been either a fancy or expensive item.  She picked up the dried flower stems and put them in the vase. Then she stared at it, unmoving for several minutes.

I waited and wondered. What was the girl thinking?  Doing?

You know those balloon things you see over the heads of people in cartoons?  I saw one of those over her head.  I saw what she was thinking.  She wasn’t thinking in words, or perhaps I didn’t know her language, but what I saw did surprise me.

There was an image in the balloon.  It was of the vase she had so carefully reassembled.  A man in an outlandish uniform was holding the vase, and it was filled with the most beautiful bunch of red roses.  He was handing it to a woman.  The woman was veiled, her face hidden behind a white lace and her hands, as she reached for the vase, were covered by white lace gloves. In contrast, she wore a floor-length black dress with a high collar. They were standing in a large room and I could tell from the man’s uniform, the woman’s dress, the curtains and pictures on the walls, that this was of another time, and of another part of the world.

What kind of past life memory had I come upon?  What old love story was being brought forth from the nether worlds by this strange and unexpected vision?

The girl on the sidewalk slowly let the broken vase slip from her hands and its pieces spread out as before.  The balloon image vanished.  She got up, holding her right hand over her eyes, found her balance and looked around.  I had stepped out from behind my hiding place and when our eyes met, I saw her eyes welling with tears, and more running down her face.

Her lips made a surprised “O” and she turned abruptly, running away from me down the street.  I looked down and there was nothing on the sidewalk, just the dirty, old, cracked cement. No broken vase, no dried up flower stems, no rust-coloured stains. Down the street, no woman running.

I knew instinctively that I had no need to go running after her and try to glean the story from her.  In my mind I knew I had seen her thoughts because I was one of her “partials” as my people explain it.  A piece of her mind linked to mine.

I will find her again and I will get the story (if I want it), whether in a restaurant, in a dream, in a vision, in a walk by a lake, in a memory, even in another life, in a lovers’ embrace, none of those particulars matters.  We are linked in a shared mind, that’s what matters. It’s what I needed corroboration for: the shared mind theory.