Monumental Times


From Earl Brown

[Earl Brown, one of our community treasures, has been fighting the good environmental fight for many years at great personal sacrifice. Find him hanging out at Ukiah’s Coffee Critic in the mornings, and at the Brewpub at all hours, when he’s not off saving the planet. Talk to him. Listen to his wisdom. Feel the passion and commitment of an earth warrior. He is here for you and me and all of us. He cares more deeply about our environmental predicament, and involves himself in living the change without self-aggrandizement, more than anyone I know. The old commercial says “I wanna be like Mike.” No thanks. I’d rather be more like Earl. -DS]

We are living in monumental times. There is nothing small about world events and circumstances as we enter 2009 and the challenges we face are going to get tougher and more eminent in our lives. Our political system, long abused by the rich elite and corporate pressure, has succumbed to the fear mongering and manipulation by these special interests, they have bought into perpetual war, the diminishment of civil liberties, environmentally destructive consumerism, religious fundamentalism and the economic enslavement of its citizenry.

It is a good thing that we are monumental Beings, not here to lead “normal” lives. It is a good thing to know, during these time of collapse and re-structuring, that our human-ness, our ability to be human, our Human Potential has yet to be tapped. It is good to know that we are up to the challenges that the knowledge, creativity, imagination and energy exists within us and within all of Life. The question is: Do we have the “will” to come together, to make the little sacrifices in our own lives that are needed to make the changes we know need to be made?

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The wisdom of uncertainty

This from Kurt Cobb
via Energy Bulletin

More than 50 years ago author and interpreter of Zen to the English-speaking world Alan Watts wrote a book entitled “The Wisdom of Insecurity.” He made the case that feelings of certainty and security were just that, feelings. Our true and perpetual state as humans is that of uncertainty and insecurity. The world never stops changing and never stops unsettling our settled notions, at least if we pay careful attention to it.

And so, what’s really necessary to feel certainty in one’s life is to be oblivious to what is actually happening. For Watts a good life and a happy life, taken with all its sufferings, is one lived while paying attention. Recent events are forcing more of us to pay careful attention. But to pay attention is to feel more insecure and more uncertain. Still, instead of something to be avoided, insecurity is something to be embraced. It forces us to become more resourceful, to encounter the world as it is and to gain a measure of prudence that can serve us well when we are tempted to believe the optimistic hype of investment advisors, economists, politicians, or experts of any kind.

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