Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address (March 4, 1965)

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Second Inaugural Address.

Delivered at Washington, D. C. March 4, 1865.

Fellow-countrymen: At this second appearing to take the oath of the presidential office, there is less occasion for an extended address than there was at the first. Then a statement, somewhat in detail, of a course to be pursued, seemed fitting and proper. Now, at the expiration of four years, during which public declarations have been constantly called forth on every point and phase of the great contest which still absorbs the attention and engrosses the energies of the nation, little that is new could be presented. The progress of our arms, upon which all else chiefly depends, is as well known to the public as to myself; and it is, I trust, reasonably satisfactory and encouraging to all. With high hope for the future, no prediction in regard to it is ventured.

On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago, all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it—all sought to avert it. While the inaugural address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war—seeking to dissolve the Union, and divide effects, by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war; but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive; and the other would accept war rather than let it perish. And the war came.

One-eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the Southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was, somehow, the cause of the war. To strengthen, perpetuate, and extend this interest was the object for which the insurgents would rend the Union, even by war; while the government claimed no right to do more than to restrict the territorial enlargement of it.

Neither party expected for the war the magnitude or the duration which it has already attained. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with, or even before, the conflict itself should cease. Each looked for an easier triumph, and a result less fundamental and astounding. Both read the same Bible, and pray to the same God; and each invokes his aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God’s assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men’s faces; but let us judge not, that we be not judged. The prayers of both could not be answered—that of neither has been answered fully.

The Almighty has his own purposes. “Woe unto the world because of offenses! for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh.” If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through his appointed time, he now wills to remove, and that he gives to both North and South this terrible war, as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to him? Fondly do we hope—fervently do we pray—that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondman’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said, “The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.”

With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan—to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves, and with all nations.

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Mindfulness (from Bruce King and Zoe Robinson, H.W., M.)

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I am grateful for an email I received recently from Bruce King.  Bruce has said I might forward it on to you so I hope you will take a moment to read it through.  Thank you Bruce . . .
 

“Thanks so much for this.  I think you’re entirely right in your attempts to promote the practice of Mindfulness among the Prosperos.  I also agree that it a very useful expansion – one might even call it a perfect fit.  At the risk of telling you something you already know, here’s why –  

Actually, Mindfulness is, or was, at least in theory, part of the curriculum of the Prosperos, in the form of the “Minute Exercise”, taught by Thane in his Lessons in the Fourth Way.  The “Minute Exercise” was derived, I’ve come to believe, from Thane’s long study and practice of Zen Buddhism.  I’ve used both the “Minute Exercise” and breath-based meditation, and the only difference I can see is in the way the relaxation response (if that’s the right term for it…) is elicited.  Once there, the process – of letting thoughts, images, and/or memories enter the mind while withholding judgment, then letting each one go – seems identical.  

Another thought: Much of what Thane taught – or what I got out of my training, anyway – was a kind of “Zen on the fly”, a constant paying of attention, including self observation, while withholding judgment (so indeed Mindfulness, in the broadest sense of the term) as one goes about one’s “ordinary” life.  So that’s another way Mindfulness can be said to fit in.  

A final thought: Interestingly enough, I remember Thane saying, at the start of Lessons in the Fourth Way, that those lessons were going to go “beyond Translation and RHS”.  So I think it’s more than likely that he considered Mindfulness, in the form of the “Minute Exercise”, to be a very advanced technique – at least for us, at that time, which was during the first six months of 1972…  

Thanks again,  

Bruce King 

Learn how to . . .
Build Your Relationship with Breath and more,
through a
Mindfulness Support/Study Practice Group Online
Starts Second Week of November

Mindfulness Teacher and Facilitator:  Zoë Robinson, H.W.,M.

Based on the book, “The Mindful Way Through Stress,
The Proven 8-Week Path to Health, Happiness, and Well-Being,”
by Shamash Alidina

Learn how Mindfulness meditations and exercises help weather stress and bring benefit to your life particularly if you are in transition.  The program includes your choice of practicing a mini schedule each day with 10-minute or so meditations and exercises or the full length meditations.

Offered in two consecutive series each of 7 weekly sessions at a pocket friendly fee for Prosperos closed class students.
60 minute evening weekly sessions with optional attendance for an additional 30 minutes following each meeting.
Meeting evening and time coordinated with participant schedules with a Holiday break between the two series.

Individual sessions available.

First 7-week series: $40  Second 7-week series: $40 – Both series together: $70 (to be taken consecutively.)

Reviewers: 50% discount

Write to Zoë: lifeodysseys01@gmail.com with inquiries and/or to register.

Undecided?  I encourage you to try the first 7-week series and then decide later if you want to continue with the second 7-week series?   Your participation may be of benefit to you through the winter months . . . and beyond! 
Looking forward to hearing from you.
May All Be Well with you
,   Zoë
 
Zoë Robinson, H.W.,M.
Mentor for Self Discovery
Individuals & Groups
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Imagine A World Where Being “Gay” The Norm & Being “Straight” Would Be The Minority!


www.loveisallyouneedthemovie.com “Teen bulling and teen suicide based on someone’s sexual preference is ridiculous – and this film turns the tables on modern society. What IF the shoe was on the other foot?. ” –K.Rocco Shields (Creator/Director)
WingSpan Pictures is currently seeking financing of the feature version of the film.

(Inspired by Heather Williams, H.W., M.)

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The myth of Prometheus (from Wikipedia.org)

prometheus

Prometheus, meaning “forethought”) is a Titan in Greek mythology, best known as the deity in Greek mythology who was the creator of mankind and its greatest benefactor, who stole fire from Mount Olympus and gave it to mankind.

Ancient myths and legends relate at least four versions of the narratives describing Prometheus, his exploits with Zeus, and his eternal punishment as also inflicted by Zeus. There is a single somewhat comprehensive version of the birth of Prometheus and several variant versions of his subjection to eternal suffering at the will of Zeus. The most significant narratives of his origin appear in the Theogony of Hesiod which relates Prometheus as being the son of the Titan Iapetus by Clymene, one of the Oceanids. Hesiod then presents Prometheus as subsequently being a lowly challenger to Zeus’s omnipotence. In the trick at Mecone, Prometheus tricks Zeus into eternally claiming the inedible parts of cows and bulls for the sacrificial ceremonies of the gods, while conceding the nourishing parts to humans for the eternal benefit of humankind. The two remaining central episodes regarding Prometheus as written by Hesiod include his theft of fire from Olympus for the benefit of humanity against the will of Zeus, and the eternal punishment which Prometheus would endure for these acts as inflicted upon him by the judgment of Zeus. For the greater part, the pre-Athenian ancient sources are selective in which of these narrative elements they chose by their own preferences to honor and support, and which ones they chose to exclude. The specific combinations of these relatively independent narrative elements by individual ancient authors (Hesiod, Homer, Pindar, Pythagoras), and specific exclusions among them, are often influenced by the particular needs and purposes of the larger myths and legends which they are depicting. Each individual ancient author selectively preferred certain crucial stories depicting Prometheus over others.

The intensive growth and expansion of Greek literature and philosophy in the classical fourth and fifth century Athenian period would greatly affect both the interpretation and influence which the myth of Prometheus would exert upon Athenian culture. This influence would extend beyond its dramatic and tragic form in the Athenian period, and influence large portions of the greater Western literary tradition which would follow it for over two millennia. All three of the major Athenian tragedians, Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides, were affected by the myth of Prometheus. The surviving plays and fragments of Aeschylus regarding Prometheus retain a special place of prominence within modern scholarship for their having survived the ravages of time. The majority of plays written by Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides have been lost to literary antiquity, including many of their writings on Prometheus.

Both during and after the Renaissance, Prometheus would again emerge as a major inspiration for his literary and poetic significance as a symbol and archetype to inspire new generations of artists, sculptors, poets, musicians, novelists, playwrights, inventors, technologists, engineers, and film-makers. His literary and mythological personage remains prominently portrayed in contemporary sculpture, art and literary expression including Mary Shelley’s portrayal of Frankenstein as The Modern Prometheus. The influence of the myth of Prometheus extends well into the 20th and 21st century as well.

More at:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prometheus

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The G-spot (from Wikipedia.org)

g-spot

The G-spot, also called the Gräfenberg spot (for German gynecologist Ernst Gräfenberg), is characterized as an erogenous area of the vagina that, when stimulated, may lead to strong sexual arousal, powerful orgasms and potential female ejaculation. It is typically reported to be located 5–8 cm (2–3 in) up the front (anterior) vaginal wall between the vaginal opening and the urethra and is a sensitive area that may be part of the female prostate.

The existence of the G-spot has not been proven; nor has the source of female ejaculation.  Although the G-spot has been studied since the 1940s, disagreement persists over its existence as a distinct structure, definition and location.  A 2009 British study concluded that its existence is unproven and subjective, based on questionnaires and personal experience.  Other studies, using ultrasound, have found physiological evidence of the G-spot in women who report having orgasms during vaginal intercourse.  It is also hypothesized that the G-spot is an extension of the clitoris and that this is the cause of orgasms experienced vaginally.

Sexologists and other researchers are concerned that women may consider themselves to be dysfunctional if they do not experience G-spot stimulation, and emphasize that this is not abnormal.

More at:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G-spot

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William Chiles joke

Margaret left the dog in her Mercedes at Bloomingdales, with the window half-down.  
She turned to the dog and said, “STAY, stay!” After walking further, she did the same, turning and extending her arms palms-down toward the dog in the car, yelling, “STAY, STAY”. 
The blonde standing nearby interrupted with, “Why don’t you just put it in park??!” 
 
© Pila of Hawaii
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Scorpio New Moon, October 30, 2016 (8 degrees) 10:38 am PDT

WendyCicchetti

We are living in powerful evolutionary times. You are alive at this time because you were born to be part of creating our world anew. We are all participating on some level, even if just with our prayers and heartfelt intentions. This New Moon focuses our attention on the evolutionary powers of Scorpio. Within the parameters of its expression are the darkest of the dark and the opposite, the most unconditional love and light.

You may feel some depression during this Moon or thoughts and emotions that make you feel uncomfortable. You may even experience a crisis situation that forces you to look inside at your own shadow for answers and a new and more evolved way of looking at things. Scorpio energy deals with alchemy, which is the process of transmuting one’s darkness.

As we watch the upheaval on our planet, and the day to day exposure of the corruption and darkness, it represents the larger view of what we must work with on an internal level. We are all one, one with the earth and all of its inhabitance, human and fauna. We are indeed at a pivotal time of polarization which must soon resolve itself if we are to continue to exist. This is also the nature and purview of Scorpio; the death of the old and the birth of the new. We use the understanding of the darkness to find the gift for a better world. Creator always provides the way forward. This is the cycle of life and death merging together to create a better world.

Our elections here in the US are taking place on November 8th, for better or for worse, during this Scorpio cycle. On November 6th daylight savings ends. On October 31, we celebrate Halloween, an observance of older, deeper and more serious observances dating back to the time when everyone was close to the Earth and familiar with the night sky. These next couple of weeks represents a confluence of a multiplicity of natural and man made happenings taking place during Scorpio’s plutonic energetic cycle of change.

There is other planetary movement of note. Mercurymoved into Scorpio on the 25th calling attention to the seeping underbelly being exposed and Venus and Saturnare exactly conjunct in Sagittarius at 14 degrees on this New Moon, bringing the value of fairness and justice within our government to the forefront during this election and evolutionary cycle. Even the animals are feeling the significance of what is happening in this regard as thousands of buffalo showed up at the site where our Native American brothers and sisters are in peaceful protest for the protection of their water. There struggle is only a symptom of much larger global problems facing our planet, its resources and its inhabitance.

Your prayers and love energy are needed in large measure during this chaotic time. Often things have to get really ugly before we stand up and be counted for love and unity. Courage take and do what you can to bless the lives of others and our Mother earth.

Written by Wendy Cicchetti

PLAN YOUR OWN NEW MOON CEREMONY. Give yourself some quiet time in meditation to see where you need to seed new ways of becoming. List these areas within your life you want to change. What areas do you want to break free from the norm and become more productive and discerning? The NEW MOON is the time to manifest the personal attributes you want to cultivate as well as the tangible things you want to bring to you. Possible phrasing: I now manifest ____ into my life. I am now _______ . Remember, think, envision and feel with as much emotion as possible, as though you already have what you want. Thoughts are things and the brain manifests exactly what you show it in the form of thoughts, visuals and emotions. The Buddha said, and I am paraphrasing, “We are the sum total of our thoughts up to today. ” If we want to be different then we must change our thoughts. “If you always do what you’ve always done then you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” CONSCIOUS CHANGE is the key.

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Election season note from Calvin Harris, H.W., M.

Calvin profile

Hey there!

For those looking to escape the hype of the election or not, may I suggest a great whodunit read, with all the innuendo of passion, and intrigue – this books got it. I loved this book, it gave a historical point of view on Political propaganda and the problem with engaging people’s prejudges rather than having them engage in critical thinking.

A Murder on the Appian Way” by American author Steven Saylor

It is election year 52 BC and Rome has erupted in gang fights on its streets. A prominent political candidate Clodius Pulcher is found murdered on the main road, the Appian Way, the main suspect is the rival candidate Titus Annius Milo. A detective, known in those days as a finder is hired to find the truth after Rome’s Senate building is burned to ashes and the city teeters on the verge of destruction.

The story is rich with legendary powerful superstars of the day such as Caesar, Marc Antony, Pompey, and Cicero, all lurking in the shadows, with whispered gossip of plots and sexual escapes.  Gordianus, the finder, his task is to find and bring back the truth out of the chaos, but not without peril to his own life, for a trial, that is explosive and politically motivated by such luminaries as Cicero and Marc Antony.

The power brokers work the cities inhabitants as if chess pieces on a chess board, a city now scared by fear and filled with madness.

From this book came the lesson of why there should be careful deliberation and critical thinking on the parts of voters when making a decision – two paragraphs I have condensed and paraphrased into this sentence is this –  “Yes Gordianus … because you went there, you saw, you spoke with witnesses …but the jurors (in our case the voters) will have done none of these things, it is up to me (politicians) to shape their perceptions … truth … if a man could be made to respond as they should by telling them the truth, do you think I would use any other tool?… But the truth is not enough for them; often it is the very worst for a man with a cause (political ambition) …Thus there are men (politicians) who are clever enough to bend the truth … (they think) in order to keep the State free and in one piece.”

I would love to hear from those who read the book.  Let me know what you think.

Aloha, Calvin

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You’re Not Going Crazy… You Are Evolving.

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By Sam Morris (medium.com)

There is a palpable sense of anxiety in the air these days. In the United States, many people are reconsidering the notion of our country being the moral leader of the free world. What used to be considered the greatest democracy in the world has evolved into a plutocracy without borders which appears to have an agenda to gradually take control of the entire world’s economic and political systems. In terms of the environment, only the most insensitive people could look at the condition that our land, air and oceans are in and not be apprehensive about the future of humankind if we stay on our current trajectory. The media feeds us a powerful concoction of reasons to be optimistic and reasons to be fearful twenty-four hours a day, which contributes to a perpetual state of anxiety and psychological paralysis. Make sure to stay on guard about the next terrorist attack, and, in the meantime, wouldn’t you be a lot happier if you had this new car and this medication? Financing plans are available even for people with poor credit! Buy now!

The global conditions affect the local conditions and the local conditions affect the personal conditions. As individuals, we are inseparable from the rest of the world. The systems that many people have relied upon in order to feel some sense of permanence — a permanent job, a permanent income, a permanent family, etc. — are beginning to decay as we see the inherent design flaws of our political, economic and social structures and discover that, whether consciously or unconsciously, we have been living in a system which often creates more problems than it solves.

For many people, this reality shift feels like being caught between two paradigms. The old paradigm of work hard in school so you can get a good job so you can get married and have kids so you can buy stuff so you can someday retire and die is beginning to fall apart at the seams. Jobs that once felt secure are quickly becoming obsolete. People are questioning the conventions of educational systems, of family, of wealth and accumulation. This restructuring of societal norms has made a lot of people uneasy. Humans fear the unknown.

The new paradigm is beginning to emerge but only if you know what to look for. Some people are realizing that all of these problems are but one giant wake-up call for humanity to learn better ways of relating and taking care of ourselves and our planet. Rather than panic about the old paradigm dying out, they embrace its death as a necessary part of human evolution. Living purposefully in a way that supports the health of living systems is the antidote to anxiety.

The more we try to hold on to the way things were in the past, the more we suffer. Losing what we are accustomed to needing in order to feel comfortable is always traumatic. When I lost the use of my lower body due to paraplegia and went through years of complications, I felt helpless in many ways. This created a deep and lasting emotional and psychological paralysis that affected me for years. I felt broken, unlovable, deeply vulnerable and codependent. I had to learn how to gradually let go of the perception that I had of myself from the past in order to once again feel whole, and that was a process that involved countless hours of coaching and meditation.

While most people do not have to suffer from a spinal cord injury, everyone has some form of paralysis that affects them in life. This feeling of uncertainty, this lack of stability, creates anxiety and can easily make someone feel like they’re going crazy.

The great philosopher and mystic Jiddu Krishnamurti had this to say about impermanence.

The fact is that life is like the river: endlessly moving on, ever seeking, exploring, pushing, overflowing its banks, penetrating every crevice with its water. But, you see, the mind won’t allow that to happen to itself. The mind sees that it is dangerous, risky to live in a state of impermanence, insecurity, so it builds a wall around itself: the wall of tradition, of organized religion, of political and social theories. Family, name, property, the little virtues that we have cultivated — these are all within the walls, away from life. Life is moving, impermanent, and it ceaselessly tries to penetrate, to break down these walls, behind which there is confusion and misery. The gods within the walls are all false gods, and their writings and philosophies have no meaning because life is beyond them.

Now, a mind that has no walls, that is not burdened with its own acquisitions, accumulations, with its own knowledge, a mind that lives timelessly, insecurely — to such a mind, life is an extraordinary thing. Such a mind is life itself, because life has no resting place. But most of us want a resting place; we want a little house, a name, a position, and we say these things are very important. We demand permanency and create a culture based on this demand, inventing gods which are not gods at all but merely a projection of our own desires.

Nature requires us to leave the past behind us, and not try to hold onto what no longer serves us, sometimes even when it served a useful purpose in the past. The intersection of the past and an uncertain future can make one feel like they are going crazy until they realize that this is all part of their own evolution. When a caterpillar forms a cocoon and turns into a butterfly, it must surrender to the transformation. But in the end, it’s more beautiful than ever.

Sam Morris

Sam Morris is the founder of Zen Warrior Training. He helps people around the world to transform and live powerful, joyful lives. www.zenwarriortraining.com

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INTRACELLULAR/INTERSTELLAR OVERDRIVE

Intracellular/Interstellar Overdrive
Intracellular/Interstellar Overdrive

IntraCellular/InterStellar Overdrive…

After many months away from working with art, this is our return.  Pen, Ink, drawing over several days, bringing disparate elements together for a new interpretation of the old theme, this is the result.

Moving the notch up a bit on the concept of Mandala, a play on the micro/macrocosm.  As one observer said, ” I’ve heard of Conceptual Art, but that one looks to me like Conception Art.”  Perhaps it is, trying to capture the Creation in the ever present moment, without beginning, without end, ever conscious, ever aware of itself, and its expressions of individuation.

Here is for the Beauty, here is for Love.

Bright Blessings,
Gwyllm Llwydd

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