Change Allowed

Change Allowed
Painted by Alex Grey

samedi 15 février 2014


(Manfred A. Max-Neef)

We are, thus far, successful beings, yet incomplete. And, most probably, it is that incompleteness which is responsible for the uneasiness and anxieties that permeate our existence in the world today. Perhaps the moment has arrived in which to rest and reflect. We have the opportunity now, to analyze with true honesty, the map of our navigation, with all its hazards and successes, with all its tragedies and glories. And then, it may be wise to unearth the alternative map of the route we navigated not, and see whether we can find in it orientations that can rescue us fromour existential confusion.
Perhaps it would make sense that we start seeing brothers and sisters surrounding us. Perhaps it would be good to believe in the possibilities of harmony between many possible truths. Perhaps itmay be to our advantage that we dare to imagine and believe that the earth has a soul and that everything is life. erhaps it would be good to realize that there is no reason whatsoever to banish intuition, spirituality and consciousness from the realm of science. Or, to put it in Goethe’s words: “If (we) would seek comfort in the whole, (we) must learn to discover the whole in the smallest part”, because “nothing is more consonant with Nature than that she puts into operation in the smallest detail that which she intends as a whole”.
Our passionate pursuit of knowledge has postponed our navigation towards understanding. There should be nothing to impede the undertaking of such a navigation now, were it not for an economics which, as practiced under the spell of he neoliberal discourse, increasingly distorts reality, thus contributing to our onfusion and to the falsification of knowledge itself.No sustainability (which obviously requires understanding) will or can beachieved without a profound language shift. A new language that opens the door f understanding; that is, not a language of power and domination, but a language hat may emerge from the depth of our self-discovery as an inseparable part of a hole that is the cradle of themiracle of life. If we manage to provoke such a shift, e may still experience the satisfaction of having brought about a new Century worthliving in.
Let us hope for a safe voyage and a fulfilling navigation towards the shores that may turn us into complete beings capable of understanding the completeness of life.


(Manfred A. Max-Neef)

(by Terrence Mckenna)

We have arrived at a point in our human evolution, the characteristic of which is that we know a lot, but we understand very little. Our chosen navigation has been piloted by reason, and leading into the port of knowledge. As such it has been an overwhelmingly successful navigation. We have never in all of our existence, accumulated more knowledge than during the last one hundred years.  We are celebrating the apotheosis of reason, but in themidst of such a splendid celebration we suddenly have the feeling that something is missing.

Yes, we can achieve knowledge about almost anything we want. We can, for instance, guided by our beloved scientific method, study everything there is, from theological, anthropological, sociological, psychological and even biochemical perspectives, about a human phenomenon called love. The result will be that we will know everything that can be known about love. But once we achieve that complete knowledge, we will sooner or later discover that that we will never understand love, unless we fall in love. We will realize that knowledge is not the road that leads to understanding, because the port of understanding is on another shore, and requires a different navigation. We will then be aware that we can only attempt to understand that of which we become a part. That understanding is the result of integration, while knowledge has been the result of detachment. That understanding is holistic, while knowledge is fragmented.
At least we have reached a point in which we are finally becoming aware that knowledge is not enough, and that we have to learn how to attain understanding in order to achieve the completeness of our being.

We are, perhaps, beginning to realize that knowledge without understanding is hollow, and understanding without knowledge is incomplete. We therefore need to undertake, at last, the navigation we have so far postponed. But in order to do so, we must face the great challenge of a language shift. José Ortega y Gasset, the Spanish philosopher already mentioned, used to say that “every generation has its theme”. Wemight add that, in addition, every generation, or historical period, is dominated by, or falls under the spell, of some language. That is the way it is, and there is nothing wrong with it, as long as the dominant language of a given periodis coherent with the challenges of that period. 

The important thing to keep inmind is that language influences our perceptions and, hence shapes our actions. Let us go through some examples. During the first three centuries of the SecondMillennium of Western civilization, the dominant language was of a teleological nature, meaning that human actions had to be justified in terms of a calling that was superior and beyond the needs of every day life. That made possible the construction of the great cathedrals and monasteries, where time was no issue. That the construction would take six hundred years? And so what! Nobody was in a hurry. After all, they were constructing for eternity, and eternity is not infinite time, but timelessness. Thank God that the language of “efficiency” had not yet been invented. The importance lay in the deed and not in the time it might take. It was a case of coherence between language and historical challenge. 

The language dominating the Nineteenth Century was basically that of the consolidation of the nation-state. The great speeches of political leaders such as Disraeli, Gladstone, Bismarck, are relevant examples. Without going into details, we may also say that the dominant language of the Century was coherent with the historical challenge of the times. It is only in the TwentiethCentury that the dominant language is that of economics, especially during the second half. A quick overview shows some interesting perspectives. The late Twenties and early Thirties, the time of the so called great depression, coincides with the emergence ofKeynesian economics. The Keynesian language is in many ways the result of a crisis, having the capacity of both interpreting the crisis as well as overcoming it. It is, again, a language (or rather sub-language) coherent with its historical period. 

The next sub-language shift occurs during the Fifties and Sixties, with the emergence of the so called developmental language. This was an optimistic, utopian and happy language. Economists writing in those days were mainly dominated by the feeling that, at last, we had discovered how to promote true

development and overcome world poverty. For the purpose of our argumentation, it is unnecessary to reproduce the prescriptions here. However, what should be pointed out is that although the hoped-for goals were not fully achieved, many things during those decades changed in a positive manner.

A language, at least partially coherent with its historical challenges. And then came the last three decades of the Twentieth Century, with the emergence of the neoliberal discourse. A language that is still dominating over a period in which global poverty has increased dramatically, debt burden has crippled many national economies and generated brutal overexploitation of both people and natural resources, destruction of ecosystems and biodiversity has reached levels unknownin human history, and accumulation of financial wealth in ever fewer hands has reached obscene proportions. The disastrous effects of this

language, absolutely incoherent with its historical challenges, is clear to be seen by everyone, although decision-makers and holders of power prefer to look in the opposite direction, and hold on to a pseudo-religious concoction.


(Manfred A. Max-Neef)

  Life is an unending sequence of bifurcations. The decision I take, implies all the decisions I did not take. The route I choose, is part of all the routes I did notchoose.
 Our life is inevitably a permanent choice of one among an infinity of ontological possibilities. The fact that I was at a given place, at a very precise moment in time, when a given situation occurred or a given person appeared, may have had a decisive effect on the rest ofmy life. A few minutes earlier or later, or a few metres away in any direction, might well have determined a different bifurcation and, hence, a completely different life. As the great Spanish philosopher José Ortega y Gasset pointedout: “I am myself and my circumstance”. What holds for individual lives, holds for communities and whole societies as well. Our so called Western Civilization is the result of its own bifurcations. We are what we are, but we could also have been something we are not. Let us then revise some of our decisive bifurcations.

 Sometime during the XIIth Century, in Italy, a youn gman, named Giovanni

Bernardone, while still very young and very rich, decided to radically change his life.  As a result of his transformation, we remember him today under a different name:  Francis of Assisi. Francis, when he referred to the world, spoke of brother Sun and sister Moon, of brother wolf, and of water, fire and trees, and people as brothers and sisters as well. The world he described and felt was a world where love was not only possible but made sense and had a universal meaning.
Sometime later, also in Italy, we hear the resounding voice of brilliant and astute Machiavelli, warning us that: “It is much safer to be feared than to be loved”. He also describes a world, but in addition he creates a world.

The world we have today is not that of Francis. It is the worldof Machiavelli. Francis was the route not navigated. The navigation we chose was that of Machiavelli, and inspired by it we have constructed our social, political and economic conceptions In 1487, another very young man, just 23 years of age, Francesco Pico dellaMirandola, prepares himself for the public defense of his 900 theses about the concord between the different religions and philosophies. He refuses to enclose himself within the narrowness of just one doctrine.Convinced that Truths are multiple, and never just one, he longs for a spiritual renovation that can reconcile humanity.

Some years later, fervent believer in absolute truth and in the possibilities of certainty, Francis Bacon invites us to torture Nature so that through the delivery of her secrets, we can extract the Truth . Again two worlds. One representing the route we navigated, and the other the route we navigated not. We did not follow the way suggested by Pico della Mirandola. We opted for accepting Bacon’s invitation, and, thus, we continue applying his recipe with efficiency and enthusiasm. We continue torturing Nature in order to extract from her what we believe to be the truth. In the year 1600, Giordano Bruno burns at the stake, victimof his pantheism, since he believed that the Earth is life and has a soul. Everything, for him, are manifestations of life.  Everything is life.

 Three decades later, Descartes whispers in his Metaphysical Reflexions: “Through my window, what I see, are hats and coats covering automatic machines”. We did not navigate the route of Giordano Bruno. We chose that of Descartes, and, in that manner, we have witnessed the triumph of mechanism and reductionism.

 For Galileo and Newton, the language of Nature is mathematics. Nothing is important in science that cannot bemeasured. We and Nature, the observer and the observed, are separate entities. Science is the supreme manifestation of reason, and reason is the supreme attribute of the human being. Goethe, whose scientific contributions have been (unjustly) overshadowed because of his colossal achievements in literature and the arts, felt upset with what he believed to be the limitations of Newtonian physics. For Goethe, “science is as much an inner path of spiritual development as it is a discipline aimed at accumulating knowledge of the physical world. It involves not only a rigorous training of our faculties of observation and thinking, but also of other human faculties which can attune us to the spiritual dimension that underlies and interpenetrates the physical: faculties such as feeling, imagination and intuition. Science, as Goethe conceived and practiced it, has as its highest goal the arousal of the feeling of wonder through contemplative looking (Anschauung), in which the scientist would come to see Godin nature and nature in God”1. 

 Two worlds oncemore. Another bifurcation. We are still under the spell of the overpowering luster of Galileo and Newton, and have chosen not to navigate theroute of a Goethen science. Feeling, intuition, consciousness and spirituality are still banished from the realmof science, some new enlightenment arising from the field of quantum physics notwithstanding.  

The teaching of conventional economics, which, as incredible as it may sound, claims to be “value free”, is a conspicuous case in point. A discipline where mathematics has become an end in itself instead of a tool, and where only that which can bemeasured is important, has generated models and interpretations that are theoretically attractive, but totally divorced from reality. Johannes Brahms composed two concerts for piano and orchestra. Regardless of which of the two may be more to one’s liking, the fascination is with the first. In fact, it is a splendid exposition of the route Brahms finally decided not to navigate. We have been left forever with the curiosity of knowing how the other Brahms might have been. That’s the way it is. A route not navigated remembered only by “library worms”, and a navigated route to which we attribute spectacular successes and achievements. The University in particular has chosen the routes of Machiavelli,Bacon, Descartes, Galileo and Newton. As far as Francis, Pico, Giordano Bruno and Goethe (the scientist) are concerned, they have remained as historical footnotes. 

 As a result of the navigated route, we have managed to construct a world in which as suggested by the Catalonian philosopher Jordi Pigem,2 the Christian virtues such as: faith, hope and charity, manifest themselves todaymetamorphosed as schizophrenia, depression and narcissism. The navigation, no doubt, has been fascinating and spectacular. There is much in it to be admired. However, if schizophrenia, depression and narcissism are now the mirror of our existential reality, it is because all of a sudden we find ourselves in a world of confusion. In a world of disenchantment, where progress becomes paradoxical and absurd, and reality becomes so incomprehensible, that we desperately seek refuge in a

technology that offers us an escape into virtual realities.

lundi 10 février 2014


( video from Esoteric Agenda 2008 created and narrated  )
by Ben Stewart

  In my opinion, The Matrix films provide the best metaphor of societey and  has for understanding why organized evil , control and oppression are allowed to exist in our current global paradigme .  I will use it for this purpose. While my interpretation isn't the only possible one, I believe it to be valid, comprehensive, and most importantly, illustrative of the message I am trying to convey you here .
So let's begin by discussing what the Matrix is not. The Matrix is not the physical world. As far as I'm concerned, the physical world is actually real and is in fact governed ceaselessly by the laws of Nature and physics . Conversely, the Matrix is also not the Internet, despite what many seem to believe. The Matrix spans and transcends both these worlds. It has existed since the dawn of civilization, and it will continue to exist until its collapse .
So then, what is it? Well, that's complicated. Much like in the movie, it's nearly impossible to convey the size and scope of the Matrix to someone who doesn't already see it for what it is. However, unlike the movie, I believe it is an ethical imperative to try to convey it in a literal sense, even to those who are so dependent upon the Matrix that they would fight to protect it. At worst, they won't understand or believe and will continue on about their business. In a sense, I believe Cypher was right to resent Morpheus for what he did, because Morpheus engaged in flat out trickery and deception to free people. But I digress. The Matrix is the social structure that subordinates Humanity to its will. It is the machinery of society that exists solely to perpetuate itself, its influence, and its power independent of any human need. It insulates us from each other and ourselves through deception, and essentially transforms us into servile engines of economic and political output (power). The machines that live off this power are institutions: large corporations, governments, schools, religious institutions, and even non-profit organisatios. Every institution will reach a point in its existence where its primary function becomes self-preservation and perpetuation, instead of serving human need. At this point it becomes a machine of the Matrix. For example, when they become machines, governments cease to serve people and instead seek to extend their power over them; corporations prioritize increasing shareholder value over producing quality products or otherwise serving the public good; schools view students as a means and not an end; religious organizations equate membership with salvation (and actively oppose other teachings and even independent practice); and non-profits and charities spend more budget on fund raising activity than on their original focus. Inevitably all large institutions eventually become machines. They become too big for Humanity.  In addition to the independent self-perpetuating machines that write most of our paychecks, the Matrix has several major cooperative and more actively sinister groups of machines subsisting off of its power and directly contributing to the structure of the Matrix itself. These groups are the Military Industrial Complex, the Political Industrial Complex, the Prison Industrial Complex, the Surveillance Industrial Complex, the Media Industrial Complex, the Academic Industrial Complex, the Agricultural Industrial Complex, the Medical Industrial Complex and the major religious organizations (not to be confused with actual religions, many religious organizations have abandoned the underlying principles of the religions they claim to represent). All machines in these groups either actively oppress humanity, or enable the oppression to persist. It is through their combined efforts that the Matrix takes on some of its more distasteful qualities. 

Resisting the Matrix: 

Resistance is a mental state. The Matrix is designed to make it easy to accept what it tells you, and to make it hard to filter the Truth from the lies. Resisting the Matrix requires understanding its operating principles and assumptions, rejecting them, and helping others to do the same.
The Matrix is fascist, the Matrix is deceptive, and the Matrix is bureaucracy. The Matrix is essentially the rule of the institution over the individual, and in it, the rights of the individual are subordinate to the rights of the institution. Individuals have to believe (or at least not actively oppose the idea) that large corporations have the right to protect their profits above all else, and thus dictate policy and law. They have to believe that this law is just, moral, and seemingly based upon reason. Or, they have to feel unaffected by the law on an individual level. They have to accept the program, and be satisfied with the rewards given for doing so. They have to do their jobs, pay their taxes, and be content with their salary (at least to the point where their salary and the stability it provides are appealing enough to deter risking leaving the Matrix). Rejecting these beliefs is the first step in resisting the Matrix. Furthermore, people must be insulated from the creative process. They have to forget that they are able to produce craft as individuals independent of large institutions, and they must feel entirely dependent upon the system to provide them with what they need. It is mostly through the violation of this principle that many who work with computers come to free themselves, or at least come to see the Matrix for what it is. Despite being products of the Matrix (for the most part), computers and the Internet enable humans to create individual works on a global scale: independent media, self-publishing, Free Open Source Software, computer music, computer art and graphics, and so on. Computers also enable independent people to communicate and build human-serving social structures outside of the Matrix. 
However, note that computers aren't the only means of accomplishing this, and this time period isn't the first one of Exodus. In the 1960s, for example, people departed from the Matrix en-mass and independently created art, culture, and music, largely catalyzed by psychedelic drugs. Unfortunately, much of this structure collapsed due to a number of reasons, the main one being the hasty, ill-considered and unsustainable manner of its construction and the subsequent institutional and legal backlash. Miraculously, however, many of the core ideas have persisted, and their proliferation is largely the reason I am Aware and able to write this document today. It would seem that the present catalyst is a combination of the Internet and again psychedelics. Both of these phenomena provide a way of disconnecting yourself from the programmed reality and assumptions of the Matrix and taking your perceptions into your own hands. However, your "perception" is nothing but your individual dream that you have created as you have gone through life. There is the dream of the society that has been passed down generation after generation and instilled into your mind by your parents, friends, schools, and institutions. And then there is your individual dream. Each step of the way in your life you have lived subjectively, and depending upon how and where you grew up, who you hung around with, and the habits you formed, you created your little dream. Your "theory" on life while you stay completely unconscious of this. Everything that you think is "you", "I", "me", and everything you believe that you identify with is simply not you. It is not the truth. It is part of the giant web of individual dreams that everyone is in the clutches of on our planet. This is one of the main reasons why this world is the way it is, why it is so chaotic. You will scorn anyone who does not dream what you dream of, and someone will do the same to you. It is impossible for us to live the same individual dream because we cannot know everything about each other down to our core. It is a constant fog that grows bigger and bigger and more dense as each day passes. It is your ego and it is my ego. The dream is not real. If we want to even begin to understand what it means to exist as a human being on this planet and evolve, this truth must be learned and it is just the beginning. Somewhere along the way, the entities that have been running the show figured out how the ego works, and they have been doing a damn good job at distracting us from trying to find a way out of our dreams and the dream of society. Psychedelics are simply a tool, but one of many to truly explore and expand your consciousness. However, whether it be psychedelic substances or meditation, it is not the ultimate answer. It is simply showing you the door, but it is your choice whether or not you want to enter into the other side. To persist, the Matrix requires control, and in democratic societies it maintains this control by filtering people's view of reality through corporate-owned mass media and television. In essence, the Matrix requires a form of thought control, but not in the science fiction sense. Instead, it achieves an effective enough manner of thought control by manufacturing consent. The large majority of the public has to "buy in". They have to believe that the news media give them an accurate picture of the world. And by and large, they do believe this. Everything the general public knows about the world, they know through the Matrix. The symbols and images the Matrix presents to them have become more real than reality itself. Hence the popularity of the ungodly abomination that is Reality TV.
Note that while some media outlets do actively promote a political agenda of domination and control, on the whole it is not through some grand conspiracy that this process (or any process of the Matrix) functions. It is simply the way mass media is organized. Mass media is a machine that exists as a profit maximizing entity, and the most profitable news (and the cheapest news to produce) is recycled soundbytes and pre-packaged press releases from corporations and government. Furthermore, in the interest of preserving its revenue stream, news media cannot allow the public to hold any opinion that may threaten the authority and policy of government or the profitability of their sponsors, which are also machines of the Matrix and almost always directly involved in the business of domination and control. Thus the media must perpetuate the status quo. No news is good news. Understanding this bias in the media is key to undoing the filter it applies. Consider who the advertisers and sponsors are. Beware of press releases disguised as investigative reporting. When possible, confirm mainstream, corporate produced stories with coverage from places like IndyMedia (go local), Wikinews, GNN, Politech, Free Speech TV, Democracy Now, Free Speech Radio News, and FAIR. A lot of the time these sources also cover many eye-popping items that for some reason don't even receive mention on corporate news media.
Last, and most assuredly not least, the Matrix seeks to identify and know its members at all times, in a misguided attempt to maintain control. It demands total surrender of your privacy to function in it. It is by breaking this last property of the Matrix that we come to truly free ourselves from it; to create economies, communication, and culture independent of its control.
Of course, the ultimate form of resistance is to fully disconnect from any and all dependence upon and allegiance to government and institution; to remove yourself from the power structure of the Matrix, and contribute your economic output to resistance economies. It is this form of resistance that faces the most violent opposition from the Matrix, since providing this economic power is the primary function of Humanity, as it sees it. 
Unfortunately for many this form of resistance is simply unattainable due to family and social ties, especially starting from your first realization of the size and scope of the Matrix. However, unlike in the movie, it is possible to liberate yourself gradually instead of immediately, and in some cases this can prove easier than an 'all-at-once' attempt. It starts with disconnecting. Cut out TV from your life entirely, especially TV news and Reality TV shows. You should be able to get all your information and entertainment from the web, or from real reality (or from the occasional movie). Avoid chain stores where possible, especially for food. Supporting smaller (especially sustainable) business keeps entrepreneurial and independent business spirit alive. Getting and staying out of debt (especially debt without equity, or rapidly depreciating equity such as car loans) is crucial, as debt is a primary mechanism the Matrix uses to ensure your obedience. Also, if you are a salaried employee, working a 40 hour (or perhaps even 35) hour work week can be a big start to declaring your freedom from the machine and the corporate American peer-pressure to be a diligent slave. It also frees up huge amounts of mental energy which is then available for resistance.
From here, a limited form of resistance whereby you leave the Matrix for short periods of time (long enough to conduct purchases, business transactions, and communications with the underground) is well within the reach of all computer literate individuals, and functioning as a consumer is sufficiently supportive of the Anonymous Economy for it to be sustainable. Moreover, the probability of discovery of this sort of activity can be reduced as much as you choose. Doing this effectively is the subject of this HOWTO. 
As you progress, you will notice yourself developing one or more separate identities, or pseudonyms. It is best to build as much insulation between these nyms as possible. They shouldn't appear to know each other, shouldn't really talk about the same stuff or buy the same things, and above all should be diligently separated from your original physical identity. Maintain different wallets, bags, user accounts and possibly even computers. In short, develop one or more Tyler Durdens, except without all the insanity, self-destruction, and sociopathic behavior. Or with it, if it helps.
The adept and the entrepreneurial will find it an easy step from here to total freedom. The next stage is to go into business for yourself. It doesn't have to be an anonymous business, but those who manage such an achievement do enjoy the satisfaction that they are directly subverting the Matrix and helping to weaken its hold on everyone. 

Subverting the Matrix : 

While resisting the Matrix is an act of mental rebellion, subverting the Matrix is an act of social revolution. It requires understanding the types of human communities that exist outside of the control of the Matrix. It also requires understanding what sustains them, and if and how they directly or indirectly weaken the structure and control of the Matrix. Once you understand this, it is possible to intelligently align yourself with communities that actively weaken the control of the Matrix.