Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Day of the Dead!

Wouldn't it be wonderful to enjoy Day of the Dead celebrations in this country?

The Day of the Dead is celebrated on November 1st and 2nd in Mexico. As a ritual of respect for one's departed relatives there is much food, dancing and general celebration. The holiday can be traced back thousands of years to the Aztecs, who dedicated the day to a Goddess, Mictecacihuatl. The holiday, however, is not limited to Mexico. In many forms it is celebrated all around the world.

The Mexican Day of the Dead artwork is some of my favorite:

If you are viewing this blog via an email the videos and photos will not appear. Please come to the blog at to view the complete blog.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Imagine No Religion?

Well ........ perhaps in Denmark.  As reported, the Danish are the happiest people on our planet.  When I heard this I wondered why. 

So what did I do?  Watched "Oprah", of course.  Ok ...... and did a little online research.

Turns out that they pay about half their considerable incomes to the government, which in turn gives excellent health care to all of its citizens.  School, from pre-Kindergarten through university is also completely paid for every citizen.  In fact, the government pays its citizens to attend university.  Hmmm:  encouraging its population to be educated.  Imagine doing that rather than breaking parents' backs having to pay tens of thousands a year to get their children educated in the United States.

Even though the Evangelical Lutheran Church is the government's pick of state religion, most Danish are not particularly religious and do not attend church.  Horrors!  Imagine no religion!  Imagine no pious assurety that one religion is right and all others wrong.  Imagine!

Believe it or not, the Danish tend to live with less.  WAY less.  Their homes look ...... well ....... Danish!  Clean lines and smaller, less cluttered spaces.  Their closets hold what little they do accumulate.

To quote one of the Danish women on "Oprah", "we live with less things but more life."  Ya ...... let's digest that one in this country.  Believe me, I'm pointing directly at myself on that one.

Now lest ye get the wrong idea, I adore the United States.  However, I also think that this does not disallow the general niftiness of other countries. 

The most remarkable thing about Denmark, to me, was this:  it's safe.  So .... we're safe in this country, right?  Well let me ask you this.  Would you leave your twin, month-old babies sleeping in their pram out on the street in front of your house or in front of the restaurant while you dine with the rest of your family?  No?  Why not?

Because you'd be scared absolutely into going to church every dang Sunday if you had to leave you baby out on the street in this country.  In fact it's so perilous here (in comparison) that in a county not too far from where I'm living now, a woman killed another woman in order to cut her open and steal her fetus!

The Danish, evidently, don't have a tendency towards stealing someone else's child.  That's an idea I could live with, and here's another.  Women don't feel the need to be married unless they find a man who actually seems like a spiritually aligned mate.  Danish women are raised with the notion that they can take care of themselves, thank you, and don't need a male for taking care of them.  As one Danish woman pointed out, the women there don't dream about weddings.

What a wonderful idea!  Here it seems that we dream of a fantabulous wedding party but give little to no attention to the picking of the person we're supposedly going to share the rest of our happily-ever-after lives with.  Isn't that reverse logic?  Happiness doesn't just take care of itself because we read it in a fairy tale.  Seems a bit ironic since wasn't it some Danish guy who wrote a lot of those fairy tales?

Oh, and one more thing.  No homeless people in Denmark, either.  If you're out of a job the government not only pays 90% of your previous salary for four years, they assist you in finding a new job.  Most jobs pay similarly so that one's career is picked accordng to one's likes, not one's desire to earn more than the Joneses.  In other words:  everyone is important, and every job is important.

Another idea with which I'd feel comfortable, as it's  my philosophy that from janitor to CEO, every job is important.

Wonder if they're looking for middle-aged, sorta blonde, overweight (they tend towards tall, slender blondness over there due to a fresh, healthful diet) kitty lover in Copenhagen.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Ukraine's Got Talent!

This incredible artist, who won the Ukraine's version of "America's Got Talent" interprets Germany's invasion of the Ukraine during World War II with her ultra talented hands and some sand.

It's a must see!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Nice to Hear the Truth!

I think the point he's making should be talked about more. I've always thought it to be true.

My experience, for instance, has taught me that the men who are most vociferous about the punishment which should be dealt to rapists are the men who most have a secret desire to rape.

What do you think?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Things I'm Officially Done With or ....... Things with Which I'm Officially Done

1. Kanye West. Mr. West: hopefully your current life lesson of humility will "take".

2. Wanting President Obama to remain his even-tempered, measured self. President Obama: get wicked against stupid!

3. The Modern Burning Times. Right wing insensitive, egomaniacal, holier-than-thou, witch hating, hateful, pseudo-Christians: there are WAY more of us out here than you, and we're not taking it anymore.

4. Sarah Palin. Dumb is as dumb does.

5. Feeling that things are necessary to my daily happiness.

6. Glenn Beck/FOX News/Hypocrites and Liars. I think that's self-explanatory, but just in case:

Glenn Beck Example

7. Worrying about being the perfect weight.

Beauty is as beauty does.

8. Stupid and unevolved. Although I aspire to be kind, I no longer invite people into my life who speak but don't listen, fail to give consideration to another's words and thoughts or have closed their minds to anything they weren't taught as children.


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Pussycat Dolls?

I'm sitting here drying my hair, watching the "Ellen DeGeneres Show". I really adore Ellen. She seems to be one of the nicest people in show business. But this blog isn't about her. It's about the Pussycat Dolls who are singing (and I use that word very loosely) at the tail end of her show. Which is appropriate. The tail part.

They appear to be five extremely skinny young women dressed in painted on clothes, dancing (and I use THAT word very loosely) in five inch stilettos. They are lip synching. At least they appear to be remembering the words.

As they flip and flop around the stage, wiggling and wagging, to prerecorded music which is amplified and electronically modified many times over, I'm left wondering why many people seem to think that this is entertainment. Because it's loud? It's colorful ...... as in pink and various colors of clothing. But it's boring. There is nothing meaningful to the lyrics, no excellence of practiced vocal chords or choreography. There is simply nothing about this that is top notch or entertaining (unless, perhaps, you're a 50-year-old straight man having a mid-life crisis).

I find myself hoping that my 12-year-old granddaughter never sees these young "entertainers" and never comes to believe that this is something to which she should aspire.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Go Ahead, Tell Us Glenn Beck is NOT the Biggest Hypocrite in the Western World

First, from January 3, 2008, Glenn Beck now knows "the meaning of compassion."

Quotes from the above:
- "(surgery) went horribly awry"
- "it was one of the most eye opening experiences of my life to receive health care in the United States today"
- "(health care) was phenomenally bad"
- "I have stories that will melt your brain ...... hopefully will melt the brain of the CEO of this hospital"
- "If they don't care about the President of GE do you really think they care about schlubs ..... the average working stiffs?"
- "We don't understand compassion anymore" (yes, particularly ironic, isn't it?)
- "I've had pretty dark times"
- "could have come out of the movie SAW"
- "Saturday night I was full fledged suicidal"

All of the above because of his BUTT SURGERY. Screwed up butt surgery. By our health care system. What a weenie.

Then comes even more explanation of how bad the care is in this country:

Quotes from the above:
- "There were times in the last couple of weeks that I was literally nothing more than a number"
- "There were times when people literally turned their back on my cries of plea"
- "Our politicians are right, we do have a health care crisis in this country"

He indicates that health care will not be improved by politicians who want to throw money at the health care system for marble counters and plasma TVs. Wow. I didn't know I was getting a plasma TV next time I was in hospital, did you? Cool! I thought I was just gonna get the usual, good ol' fashioned kind of plasma. You know, the kind that comes in a plastic bag. Glad he straightened that one out for me.

Try not to lose your teeth from the quick spin around after Glenn Beck went from CNN (at which time the above was filmed) to FOX News .......

Quotes from the above:

- "America has the best health care system in the world."

How does he know this?

- "I don't see anyone dying in the streets anywhere."

Here comes a pretty good summary of Glenn Beck:

One of the comments following this video on YouTube was "too bad nobody handed him a gun." Hmmmmmmm.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Think You Already Have Enough to Worry About?

Well, you're wrong.

Turns out we should be worried about asteroids, also.

According to "USA Today", NASA was ordered by Congress four years ago to watch 90% (what, the other 10% don't count?) of the asteroids in space which may pose a threat to earth. One small yet significant problem: Congress did not come through with the money for enough telescopes to do this.

Guess y'all best get out your telescopes and start watchin'.

Click on the blog title to be taken to a very interesting NASA site.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Online Tarot Readings

I've been prompted to continue with my intention to offer online tarot readings. Thank you, Mind of MoJo reader!

There are several ways which work well for tarot readings. By phone, in person, by email, or using SKYPE on the computer. Readings generally take a half hour to 45 minutes. If you have a specific question I'll be pleased to address it for you. If you wish a general reading, or a reading regarding one particular area of your life (finances, career, romance) that is an option, also.

An email reading is generally somewhat more extensive, including horoscope information, card layout and interpretation.

Questions? Either leave a message on this blog, or email me directly at

The Tarot Reader is in!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Glenn Beck Make Up Your Mind, Sweetheart

Ok ...... first Mr. Beck says that Obama "hates white people."

Three seconds later he says, "I'm not saying he doesn't like white people."

Ummmmm ...... huh?

I guess when you're a right wing hate monger you don't want to get called out on what you just said. Damn. It's SO much easier just to sling around your hateful terminology without having to actually have FACTS behind any of it. Sigh.

Here is what I truly don't get. How can anyone with even a modicum of self-esteem, analytical capability or sensibility WANT to watch this guy?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Epoxy Effectively Ends Egregious Exploits

Or ...... Repugnant Romeo Receives Rightful Reward

Gotta love this:

STOCKBRIDGE, Wis. (AP) -- Three Wisconsin women are accused of tying up and assaulting a married man after allegedly finding out he was having affairs with each of them.

The women are each charged with false imprisonment, a felony that carries a maximum prison term of six years.

Calumet County prosecutors say 48-year-old Therese A. Ziemann of Menasha lured the man to a Stockbridge motel last Thursday. Prosecutors say she was soon joined by 43-year-old Michelle Belliveau of Neenah; 43-year-old Wendy L. Sewell of Kaukauna; and the man's wife.

Authorities say Ziemann punched the man in the face and applied Krazy Glue to other body parts. All four women allegedly fled with his cell phone, wallet and vehicle.

Prosecutors also plan to charge the wife.

Online court records didn't list defense attorneys for any woman Monday.

Stockbridge is southeast of Appleton.

The Secret, or the Mystery?

I watched the movie "The Secret" 2-3 times. I own it, and thought that it had validity. Yet something about the theory of want it, think it, get it, always nagged at me. So materialistic. So egocentric. Just so wrong in some way. Perhaps wrong in the greedy kind of way that CEOs pay themselves HUGE salaries in comparison to the company's employees.

Today I came across this article written by Stuart Davis, a former Buddhist monk. I think he's hit the nail on the head. What do you think?

Here's the link:

I reprint it here from his own blog for your convenience:

The Secret: The Spirituality of Narcissism
Mar 12 2007
by stuart davis

"Let me know Your enormity, and my tininess
Help me see Your infinity and my finite-ness"

-Mike Doughty, His Truth Is Marching On

The Spirituality of Narcissism.

Song of The Day: Hyper-Ballad / Bjork
Word of the Day: Lygophilia / Love of Darkness

The Secret. It's all the rage. The book and movie have garnered the enthusiasm of millions. Everyone from Oprah to Montel is extolling Rhonda Byrne's spiritual juggernaut. The premise of The Secret is simple; The power of attraction. Like attracts like. What we think, what we feel, acts as a magnetic signal, attracting its correlate from the Universe. The Secret says our thoughts and feelings manifest that which we desire. In fact, according to the teachers of the Secret, this works 100% of the time, for 100% of the people who use it. The Universe responds to our wishes, providing whatever we desire. This is because "we create our own reality", and The Secret says science confirms this.

As with most things, The Secret is a Good news / Bad news scenario. First, the good news. The secret is (partly) true. Our thoughts and feelings are of consequence, and positive thinking and feeling can significantly characterize our experience of reality, even influence the way reality unfolds. The Secret cites everyone from Martin Luther King to Einstein as examples of people who knew -and employed- The Secret. Martin Luther King had a dream. Einstein said God doesn't play dice. And so on.

The Secret uses valid (but partial) suppositions such as:

Our thoughts and feelings are powerful

and inflates them to a Kosmic (and false) scale, giving us: Our thoughts are the most powerful things on Earth.

The secret takes a statement like

Thought can influence reality

and amplifies it to "Thoughts create reality." Not just any thoughts, but YOUR thoughts.

(By the way, are you a rape victim? I guess you created that reality with your thoughts. Was your family member killed in Iraq? I guessed you created that experience for yourself so you could learn from it. Wow. You are one sadistic cat.)

The Secret takes a truth like

The Self is one with the Universe,

and then immediately inserts the wrong self; The Ego.

Throughout, The Secret conflates ego (the frontal structure, personality) with Self (an unbounded, unlimited reality which transcends but includes all qualities). In doing so it engineers an unabashed Spiritual Narcissism. Ego is God. The vicissitudes of your ego, its preferences, its unresolved cravings, become the vestments in a regressive ritual. See? It's MAGIC. You caste a spell, voila', the Universe responds. Cuz you're God. Why exactly an entity that IS everything would need more is not clear, why a Divine Being that is all powerful would need to appeal to another power is perplexing, but.. To cement this Kosmic Delusion, The Secret hypnotically repeats "The Universe" and "Your thoughts, your feelings" until the two are braided into a phantasm that places your Ego squarely in the Center of Reality, in control of all that comes in and out of being. What do you want to do with your Divine Power? Free all sentient beings? Awaken every sister and brother from the Dream? Dissolve the source of suffering? No. You want cars. And girlfriends, and boyfriends, and a new red bike and a big new house.

The Secret snags the self by flattering it into masquerading as the Self. As an egomaniac, I can attest to the efficacy of that strategy. And also to its disastrous results.

Allow me to pause for a confessional tangent. Before you think I am positioning myself as some spiritual fundamentalist who thinks materialism is bad and "spirituality" is good, let me set things straight. Me, Stuart Davis? I LOVE money. I LOVE sex. I want a new house. I'll take a shiny red bike. I want to be rich, powerful, and successful. And I do not apologize to anyone for that. I think the ego is good, I think it's games are legitimate and should be engaged. You know what else? I want YOU to be rich. I want YOU to be successful, powerful, and have every wish in the circus of your imagination brought into reality. As long as we're not hurting anyone else, I say let's go to town. I am the first to stand up and shout "THE EGO IS NOT EVIL!! THE EGO IS NOT BAD!! IT HAS GOTTEN A RAW DEAL FROM SPIRITUALITY! LET THE EGO BE WHAT IT ITS!!!" In fact, the ego is quite literally one of the most astonishing miracles to occur in the history of Universe. No joke. Celebrate it. It's time we ended the spiritual war with the ego, include it as another facet of the Beauty in our Being. Why would we leave anything out? The self counts. The ego matters.

I also have to say: The ego is not the Self.

The Secret is selling tools that supposedly fulfill wishes, dreams, desires. But WHOSE wishes? What LEVEL of desire? What DEPTH of dream?

Well, here's what sucks about The Secret: There are many levels of self, but only one which THINKS, and that's the Ego. Thinking, feeling, thinking, feeling, these two conductors are the hub for all The Secret espouses, and sadly thoughts and feelings (while important and valid) come from an extremely shallow dimension of the self. Because of this, the Secret deeply, sadly, entangles us further into suffering instead of liberating us from it. The source of suffering is delusion -the illusion of separateness. It gives rise to craving, longing, desire. It's the illusion that we lack something that sends us on the Odyssey of Acquisition.

The Secret gives us a cure that's worse than the disease. Its cure for craving is controlling craving. Its solution to hunger is famine. The Secret speaks to materialism, narcissism, and other afflictions of self by sanctifying them, exalting them. Rather than liberate us from the Source of Suffering, The Secret reenforces it. It anchors us in the shallowest level of our self (the Ego) and consecrates its preferences, its fantasies.

When someone asks you what you want, before you answer, ask yourself What level of me are they asking? What level of me am I going to respond from? If I had all the power to wish for anything in the Universe, what would I wish for? Who am "I" anyway?

It is dangerous to insert the ego in the place of the Self -the highest Self, the deepest Self, the one that is without a beginning or end. The ego -the subject- is a boundary. It identifies itself by what is inside or outside of it. Whatever is outside of the subject is an object. The small self is a dynamic aggregate of qualities and preferences, locating itself anew in each moment through a calculus of these subject / object distinctions ( I am this, I'm not that, I like this, I don't like that, I want this, I don't want that, this is me, that is not). The self depends entirely on boundaries.

Self, on the other hand, has no boundary. Self has no "other". It cannot be reduced to any particular qualities or characteristics, but all qualities and characteristics rise and fall within it. Self includes vertical and horizontal coordinates that stretch as deep and wide as the Universe itself. It is true that all Reality arises from and dissolves into the Self. Not the ego, not the personality, not an individual, but the Self -the Groundless Ground of all Reality.

The ego is defined by preferences, identified by desires, determined by boundary.

The Self has no preferences, no desires, no lack, no inside, no outside. It includes all preferences, but is not defined by them. Desire arises within it, but it is not identified with it. Every imaginable boundary forms and dissolves within the Self, but never parses its not-two not-one Nature. This Self -entire seen and unseen Kosmos- is the native endowment of every human being. Our greatest depth is without bottom.

The good news: You can have your cake and eat it too. You don't have to disown your self to be your Self. You have an ego. You are the Universe. But don't confuse the two, and don't let anyone else confuse them for you.

I have an ego, and it has desires, and it's healthy and appropriate for that level of my being to seek fulfillment. My thoughts are powerful, and my feelings matter. But the Universe does not reconfigure reality to accomodate the personal preferences of my ego, my frontal structure, every time an impulse comes through my reptilian brain stem. That is not just narcissism, its KOSMIC narcissism, and that is what the Secret is selling. Kosmic narcissism, spiritual materialism of the WORST kind. First, by ensnaring me in my own ego with the promise of release, liberation from desire (while addicting me to it) and second by getting me to forfeit my Self for my self. Since my ego is now Divine, since my frontal structure is now Infinite -Stuart Davis is God- why on Earth would I ever bother with finding my Self? Actual awakening requires real development, years, decades of practice and evolution. Continually moving my Subject through ever-expanding, ever-inclusive transformations takes TIME and TROUBLE. Of course there is no such thing as time, but authentically realizing that takes time. Of course there is no such thing as suffering, but profound recognition of that Fact is exquisitely painful.

Authentic spirituality is not a vending machine that spits out cars, lovers, and shiny red bikes. It is not a wand we can wave to avert discomfort, or acquire power. Actual awakening increases intimacy with all suffering (and bliss), everywhere, without exception. It does not remove struggle, but increases our devotion to and stewardship of all Reality.

Again, to be clear: I, Stuart Davis, want to be rich. I want to be comfortable. I want lots of Prada shoes. Hell, as long as my cravings are satisfied, I want that for everyone. That's not bad. I do not apologize for that, and this is not hyperbole.

But call a spade a spade. I work with my ego, but I don't presume the Universe is reinventing itself moment to moment in order to comply with the minutia of my needy personality. There is the self, and then there is the Self. I go to my therapist for one, I go to the Point of All Places for the other.

I, the Self, which also includes Stuart but is not defined by him, was here before Stuart was born, and will be here after he dies. The Self is the end of Suffering, and operates through all discrete agents as a means to Awakening to Reality as it Is. I am that Self. I am radical, absolute freedom. Incorruptible. Immutable. Every imaginable thing is that Self, equally without exception. But not all things equally realize that. Not all beings are equally awake. There is development. There is evolution toward what already Is.

The Self is absolute freedom. The self is relative delusion. The Secret is appealing to the relative self and pretending it's the absolute Self.

The Secret crowns the Ego as God (I mean, YOU create Reality, isn't that amazing? YOUR THOUGHTS are INFINITELY influential), then makes two disastrous leaps.

#1, Now that you know YOU create your own reality through the spiritual enterprise that is "thinking, feeling", what do you, the Creator, want to create with your thoughts? Wealth. Money, power, influence, status, and the luxury afforded the elite who amass fortunes. The Secret will teach you how. Odd, isn't it, that your self is so spiritual and powerful, but what it chooses to Attract with its Law is money, houses, lovers. Not the liberation of all sentient beings, not relief for every creature, not the cessation of that which is the Source of Suffering (clutching, desire, greed arising from the illusion that there is an "other"), but a refinement of the Source of Suffering. A manipulation of it. The Secret turns Desire and Clutching into a technology you can wield, AND its Spiritual! The cure is worse than the disease.

#2, Since YOU create your own Reality (Oprah went to pains to stress and emphasize this point, and had Rhonda explicitly confirm precisely that phrase "we create our own reality") you are responsible as the Source of whatever arises in your Reality. Every thing in your experience, you created (merely using thoughts and feelings! Wow). Many of you reading this right now may be astonished to finally understand you gave yourself cancer. You caused yourself to be raped, robbed, murdered, stricken with every malady in the canon of illness, beset with each kind of strife imaginable. The Holocaust? Just something Jews brought on themselves, as they each apparently created their own Reality. The Rape of Nanking? Bad Chinese, with their bad thoughts and feelings, simply created their own reality and thus caused the unspeakable murder of 350,000 innocent children, women, and men. Weird, the Reality people create for themselves, ain't it?

Of course, it's hard to overstate how cruel and insulting such a notion is. The impossibly sick premise that people in such situations create their own Reality is so obviously wrong, so self-evidently false to our basic intuition, that we can almost laugh it off. I mean, we could if Oprah -perhaps the most influential woman in the Western World- hadn't gone to pains to repeatedly emphasize and confirm it with Rhonda Bynre to an audience of tens of millions. Tens of millions of people who literally orient their lives according to these sorts of "discoveries".

There are not just many levels of smaller self (the ego is but one), but different spheres, or dimensions. The Secret is not only selling a shallow dimension of self, but it is also only acknowledges one aspect of self.

The Secret is working in one realm (interior individual). And it actually does a useful thing in that realm. Positive thought is important. We can change the way in which our thoughts and feelings symbiotically produce healthier behavior. That's good. But there is so much more to the story. We have an inside, and an outside. We are individuals, and we are also social beings. These realms are all part of who we are. All four realms come together at once, they tetra-arise as Reality. No one domain "creates" the others. Each is indispensible. The interior of an individual (where thought occurs) does have correlates in the exterior of the individual (manifest as measurable biological change). We are beings with an inner and an outer worlds. But Reality is not composed of individuals. We are also collective beings, with shared interiors, or inter-subjective domains. Such as culture, collective consciousness, and all that goes with the inner World of We. That shared inner world is complemented by the outer world, the inter-objective domain of Nature, the biosphere, and all that can be seen and observed in corporeal form. These FOUR domains:

*The Interior of an Individual (where thought occurs, for instance)
*The Exterior of an Individual (the body, what can be measured and seen objectively)
*The Interior of the Collective (Culture, invisible features of mutuality, inter-subjective social)
*The Exterior of The Collective (Biosphere, planet, infrastructure, the inter-objective realm)

While The Secret promotes itself as the magic wand for everything, it actually deals with one part of one realm, and misrepresents itself while doing it (by substituting self for Self).

To claim any one of them "creates" the other is a disaster, and unfortunately fairly common occurance. Any time you find a discipline which FOCUSES on a particular domain (which is good) you find it is tempted or seduced into claiming that ONE quadrant is the only "real" one, or the only "true" one, or the only important one (which is bad). That is another of The Secret's defects.. It takes one realm, one perspective (The Interior of an Individual) and claims it creates all the others. Wow. YOU, your thoughts, create your body. And the biosphere, and the entire culture, and history of the planet, origin of species, all the cities you could visit, all the planets in the Galaxy, all the Galaxies, all the... and so on. And its wrong. Sorry. Your thoughts, your feelings, while being important and valuable, are but two coordinates in one Quadrant.

Your thoughts and feelings are not the Source of Reality, but two of its features. You do not "create" your reality, you participate in it, and in certain circumstances, under particular conditions, you can influence it. And it is good and useful to cultivate that influence, to positively nurture those portions as much as possible, in the interest of love.

Rhonda Byrne's Secret is bad Self-Help masquerading as mysticism. Broadly, "spirituality" can mean anything. So when we say spirituality, what level of spirituality are we talking about? What altitude of awareness are we coming from, what level of "spirit" are we referring to? I'm not saying The Secret is not spiritual. I'm saying it's a very low-level of spirituality masquerading as a high one. What it uses as enticements (become wealthy, get a better job, get a lover) are very telling. It is appealing to a person's desire to attain, acheive, and better their personal station. It is promising you a better STORY. And that is indeed one altitude of spirituality. But it's the bottom, and inflating it can end up keeping people stuck in the cycle of suffering even longer. Because the self is addicted to its STORY. The Self is the end of all stories.

Now contrast The Secret with The Mystery. The Mystery, to me, includes all four domains (inner, outer, individual, collective) and does not privilege one over the other. It engages them as tetra-arising. It includes them as inextricably inter-woven, yet distinct in important ways. The Mystery includes every altitude in every domain, and values each of them, but also understand their differences. The Mystery includes every methodology, every ontology or Way of Knowing, but it also understands what they do, and what they don't do. The Secret is but a method, and it will not set you free from The Story. In fact, it will probably suck you deeper into it. It promises money, power, increased attraction, and tells you it is "spiritual" practice. Your story could become so comfortable, why would you ever forfeit it?

Here is an important question: What level of YOU wants to get rich? What altitude of YOU wants a new house, a better lover, an improved Story?

Here's what I feel is a healthier approach. Use the right tool for the right job. The right decoy for the right level. I think it is GOOD to improve our financial station. I think it is GOOD to have an exciting love life. That's why I have a financial advisor. That's why I see a therapist. I need to work on my self. I want to improve my relative reality. But I don't need to invoke "the Universe" or quantum mechanics or magical-narcissistic mysticism to do so. That's tremendously misguided. Want to find your Self? See Swami Sally. Want to get a new house? A better blow job? See Suze Ormon and Dr Ruth. Stop it with this Secret delusion. It's offensive and detrimental to our work in the Mystery.

Perhaps worst of all, until we are truly FREE -free from the Source of Suffering, free from desire, clutching, the assault of our false identities and all their Stories- until we are that FREE, we cannot really be available to help others become FREE. And that my friends, is the hokey pokey.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Nature or Nurture?

I've often wondered. What do you think?

Is it Real? Feral Children 1/5

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Twilight Zone or Premonition?

That's 3.5 minutes of a Twilight Zone episode entitled "No Time Like the Past" from 1963. Sound familiar?

The Georgia Guide Stones ..... America's Stonehenge?

Have you ever heard of the Georgia Guide Stones? I hadn't until this afternoon.

See them by clicking on the link in my title or here:

Georgie Guide Stones

Designed and paid for in 1979 by someone who wished to remain anonymous, using the pseudonym R. C. Christian, they were erected in 1980 from enormous granite slabs weighing a total of 240,000 pounds. R. C. Christian supposedly indicated that he represented a small group of Americans. That may be rumor, as in fact most stories about him may be purely rumor.

To this day, evidently not much if anything is known about R. C. Christian. The four large upright blocks pointing outward are oriented to the limits of the migration of the moon during the course of the year.

It is said that the monument commands a view to the east and to the west and is within the range of the summer and winter sunrises and sunsets.

In order to retain constant visibility of the North Star, an eye level hole was drilled from the south to the north side of the center gnomon stone. Ostensibly symbolizing orientation and constancy with the forces of nature.

A slot is cut in the middle of the gnomon stone to form a window which aligns with the positions of the rising sun at the Summer and Winter Solstices and at the Equinox, so that the noon sun shines to indicate noon on a curved line.

Here's a brief view of the monument:

This is what is inscribed on the stones in eight languages: English, Russian, Swahili, Spanish, Hebrew, Chinese, Arabic and Hindi.

1. Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.
2. Guide reproduction wisely - improving fitness and diversity.
3. Unite humanity with a living new language.
4. Rule passion - faith - tradition - and all things with tempered reason.
5. Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
6. Let all nations rule internally resolving external disputes in a world court.
7. Avoid petty laws and useless officials.
8. Balance personal rights with social duties.
9. Prize truth - beauty - love - seeking harmony with the infinite.
10. Be not a cancer on the earth - Leave room for nature - Leave room for nature.

Of course there are those Christian (when using the word Christian in this blog I am referring to that radical, verbose, self-righteous Christian element; not the real Christians who believe in a message of love and light) based conspiracy theorists who feel that anything outside their closely held Biblic sphere is heresy. Everything is a conspiracy to "get them" and turn the world "socialist". Hmmmm. WARNING: sarcasm begins here:

First of all ...... the guide towards keeping earth's population down does not suggest KILLING 5.5 billion people. Duh. The way to get the earth's people population under control is to stop producing hordes of progeny! Get ahold of yourselves, people! Hello, Pope, hello African governments, et al ...... advise the use of birth control before before you put us all out of business! But no, that is giving women power and we can't have that, can we? Power over our own bodies ...... power to control the amount of children for which we have the time and money to care. Don't you dare suggest THAT you damn commies!

Then there's that part about nature. God forbids a reverence and care for nature! Doesn't he? Oh wait, no, I don't think that's in the Bible. In fact I think the Bible tends to lean towards care of the environment and the earth's inhabitants. Oh well, minor detail as far as the Christians are concerned.

It's ever so much more convenient to take what suits their purposes from the Bible (those short paraphrases about homosexuality or whatever their current prejudice) and forget those pesky little commandments they don't like. You know the ones. Loving each other, caring for our brothers, not eating the abominable shellfish. Stuff like that.

Add to that the fact that their control is superficially disguised by the 180 degree attempt at telling you that whoever paid to erect these guideposts is the one trying to control you. Not them.

Hmmm again. So ...... Christians are not trying to control the world? If that's true, what are missionaries doing? What are all those Bible thumping preachers doing who tell you it's their way or the highway or worse yet ..... their way or eternal damnation? That's NOT control?

Reminds me of the political party who with regularity accuses the other of doing precisely what they themselves are doing. But I digress.

Check out one of the many conspiracy theory videos and see what you think. Really, I'd like to know. In your opinion are the guideposts evil Illuminati propaganda or are they possibly very good instructions about how to live richly and peacefully on this earth without damaging it beyond repair?

Now that you've gotten to enjoy the right wing Christian conspiracy explanation for these mysterious guide posts, here is the creator's (R. C. Christian) interpretation. His explanatory words, from a book written by and left in a Georgia library by R. C. Christian, are in italics.

* Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.
Means the entire human race at its climax level for permanent balance with nature.

* Guide reproduction wisely - improving fitness and diversity.
Without going into details as yet undiscovered, this means humanity should apply reason and knowledge to guiding its own reproduction. "Fitness" could be translated as "health." "Diversity" could be translated as "variety".

* Unite humanity with a living new language.
A "living" language grows and changes with advancing knowledge. A "new" language will be developed "de novo" - and need not necessarily be adopted from any languages now in existence.

* Rule Passion - Faith - Tradition - and all things with tempered reason.
"Faith" here may be used in a religious sense. Too often people are ruled by blind faith even when it may be contrary to reason. Reason must be tempered with compassion here - but must prevail.

* Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
Courts must consider justice as well as law.

* Let all nations rule internally resolving external disputes in a world court.
Individual nations must be free to develop their own destinies at home as their own people wish - but cannot abuse their neighbors.

* Avoid petty laws and useless officials.
Self explanatory.

* Balance personal rights with social duties.
Individuals have a natural concern for their personal welfare, but man is a social animal and must also be concerned for the group. Failure of society means failure for its individual citizens.

* Prize truth - beauty - love - seeking harmony with the infinite.
The infinite here means the supreme being - whose will is manifest in the working of the cosmos - if we will seek for it.

* Be not a cancer on the earth - Leave room for nature - Leave room for nature.
In our time, the growth of humanity is destroying the natural conditions of the earth which have fostered all existing life. We must restore reasoned balance.

That all sounds pretty darned good to me and is totally in keeping with my nature based spirituality. Am I going to Hell because I believe we should take care of our Mama Nature? According to the radical Christians who want to tear down this monument, evidently I am.

What do you think?

Monday, July 27, 2009

War and Greed, Not by Tolstoy

"I see in the future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a result of the war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. I feel at this moment more anxiety for the safety of my country than ever before, even in the midst of the war."

Wish I'd said that, but I didn't. Guess who did. Go ahead ........ guess.

- Abraham Lincoln
Nov. 21, 1864 (letter to Col. William F. Elkins)
Ref: The Lincoln Encyclopedia, Archer H. Shaw (Macmillan, 1950, NY)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sunday Mornings

Sunday mornings are great days to sit around, watch the "CBS Sunday Morning" show (the last 2 minutes of nature scenes are my favorite), drink coffee, watch the clouds roll by and share some alone time with my Honey.

Since I'm a multi-tasker, I'm also enjoying youtube. So today I'm going to share with you some fun. Fun for me is often seeing other people have fun. I also adore dancing. Put the two together and it's a win-win.

The Wedding Dancers ..... this guy is good!

You know this isn't easy in a wedding dress .....

And here it is, my all-time favorite. Good thing for my Honey I didn't see this prior to OUR wedding, eh?

Blessings, y'all. Hope you're enjoying your Sunday morning, also.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Ok, this is getting too weird

Now there's an old movie starring Michael Jackson, where he also portrays someone who looks precisely like the DA who prosecuted him for child molestation. Naturally, since there's money in it, someone's about to put it on TV.

There are reports that his nose was a prosthesis, and he had a velvet lined tray full of them in his home.

Someone claiming to be his "love child" has come out of the closet. Evidently he was at MJ's funeral, sitting with the family?

They're making a movie out of his last rehearsal shots.

No, this is no surprise. Anywhere there might be money made, there will be someone trying to do it.

Geez. Leave the guy alone. He's dead. I don't know what all his demons were, but maybe he's finally at peace. Too bad the vultures, including his own father, don't fade peacefully into the sunset.

One thing I did find interesting which was pointed out to me after MJ's death was this video. Inspiration or pattern?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Let's Be Honest

I'm watching "Face the Nation" this morning. On the first segment we have Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Congressman Charlie Rangel (D-NY) discussing the ongoing struggle with health care in this country.

At least twice, as the camera cuts back to Orrin Hatch following Charlie Rangel's comments, Senator Hatch's first sentence is, "Let's be honest."

How offensive. Is he suggesting that Congressman Rangel is not being honest? Is he suggesting, perhaps, that he's the only one who can be "honest" on this subject matter?

Have you noticed how often, when someone says, "let's be honest", what it really means is "now listen to me, even though I have nothing substantive to say because I want to discredit what the other person just said by being evasive". It seldom has little to do with being honest. In this case, when Orrin Hatch continues to suggest that any change in health care will put small businesses out of business via health care penalties, it has NOTHING to do with honesty. It's an outright lie.

Reminds me of the old Indian quote: "How smooth must be the language of the whites, when they can make right look like wrong, and wrong like right."

So, Senator Hatch, how about an HONEST conversation regarding health care in this country. How about BEING honest. How about letting us hear a suggestion from a Republican rather than solely criticism? Come up with an idea! You didn't do it with a stimulus plan and you're not doing it with health care. Where is your plan? Status quo? The old Republican mantra: "Status quo status quo status quo"?

Go ahead. Let's be honest.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Nina Simone

Nina Simone has been one of my favorite singers for years. This morning something reminded me of this tune, also one of my favorites. It's been sung by Ms. Simone, Judy Collins and even Neil Diamond. "I Think It's Going to Rain Today" was written by Randy Newman in 1968.

And my all time favorite, "I Want a Little Sugar in My Bowl" (1967):

Excerpt from Nina Simone's bio:

Nina Simone
pianist, singer

Dates: February 21, 1933 (*) - April 21, 2003

Also known as: "Priestess of Soul"; birth name: Eunice Kathleen Waymon, Eunice Wayman

Known for:

* Composed over 500 songs, recorded almost 60 albums
* First woman to win the Jazz Cultural Award
* "Woman of the Year" 1966, Jazz at Home Club
* Female Jazz Singer of the Year, 1967, National Association of Television and Radio Announcers

In 1993, Don Shewey wrote of Nina Simone in the Village Voice, "She's not a pop singer, she's a diva, a hopeless eccentric ... who has so thoroughly co-mingled her odd talent and brooding temperament that she has turned herself into a force of nature, an exotic creature spied so infrequently that every appearance is legendary."

Nina Simone was born as Eunice Kathleen Waymon in 1933(*) in Tryon, North Carolina, daughter of John D. Waylon and Mary Kate Waymon, an ordained Methodist minister. The house was filled with music, Nina Simone later recalled, and she learned to play piano early. When her mother took a job as a maid for extra money, the family saw that young Eunice had special musical talent and sponsored classical piano lessons for her. She studied with a Mrs. Miller and then with Muriel Massinovitch.

For her last year of high school, Nina Simone attended Juilliard School of Music, as part of her plan to prepare to attend the Curtis Institute of Music. She took the entrance exam for the Curtis Institute's classical piano program, but was not accepted. Nina Simone believed that she was good enough for the program, but that she was rejected because she was black.

Her family by that time had moved to Philadelphia, and she began to give piano lessons. When she discovered that one of her students was playing in a bar in Atlantic City -- and being paid more than she was from her piano teaching -- she decided to try this route herself. Armed with music from many genres -- classical, jazz, popular -- she began playing piano in 1954 at the Midtown Bar and Grill in Atlantic City. She adopted the name of Nina Simone to avoid her mother's religious disapproval of playing in a bar. The bar owner demanded soon that she add vocals to her piano playing, and Nina Simone began to draw large audiences of younger people who were fascinated by her eclectic musical repertoire and style. Soon she was playing in better nightclubs, and moved into the Greenwich Village scene.

By 1957, Nina Simone had found an agent, and the next year issued her first album, "Little Girl Blue." Her first single, "I Loves You Porgy," was a George Gershwin song from Porgy and Bess that had been a popular number for Billie Holiday. It sold well, and her recording career was launched. Unfortunately, the contract she signed gave away her rights, a mistake she came to bitterly regret. For her next album she signed with Colpix and released "The Amazing Nina Simone." With this album came more critical interest.

Nina Simone briefly married Don Ross in 1958, and divorced him the next year. She married Andy Stroud in 1960 -- a former police detective who became her recording agent -- and they had a daughter, Lisa Celeste, in 1961. This daughter, separated from her mother for long periods in her childhood, eventually launched her own career with the stage name of, simply, Simone. Nina Simone and Andy Stroud drifted apart with her career and political interests, and their marriage ended in divorce in 1970.

In the 1960s, Nina Simone was part of the civil rights movement and later the black power movement. Her songs are considered by some as anthems of those movements, and their evolution shows the growing hopelessness that American racial problems would be solved.

Nina Simone wrote "Mississippi Goddam" after the bombing of a Baptist church in Alabama killed four children and after Medgar Evers was assassinated in Mississipppi. This song, often sung in civil rights contexts, was not often played on radio. She introduced this song in performances as a show tune for a show that hadn't yet been written.

Other Nina Simone songs adopted by the civil rights movement as anthems included "Backlash Blues," "Old Jim Crow," "Four Women" and "To Be Young, Gifted and Black." The latter was composed in honor of her friend Lorraine Hansberry and became an anthem for the growing black power movement with its line, "Say it clear, say it loud, I am black and I am proud!"

With the growing women's movement, "Four Women" and her cover of Sinatra's "My Way" became feminist anthems as well.

But just a few years later, Nina Simone's friends Lorraine Hansberry and Langston Hughes were dead. Black heroes Martin Luther King, jr., and Malcolm X, were assassinated. In the late 1970s, a dispute with the Internal Revenue Service found Nina Simone accused of tax evasion; she lost her home to the IRS.

Nina Simone's growing bitterness over America's racism, her disputes with the record companies she called "pirates," her troubles with the IRS all led to her decision to leave the United States. She first moved to Barbados, and then, with the encouragement of Miriam Makeba and others, moved to Liberia.

A later move to Switzerland for the sake of her daughter's education was followed by a comeback attempt in London which failed when she put her faith in a sponsor who turned out to be a con man who robbed and beat her and abandoned her. She tried to commit suicide, but when that failed, found her faith in the future renewed. She built her career slowly, moving to Paris in 1978, having small successes.

In 1985, Nina Simone returned to the United States to record and perform, choosing to pursue fame in her native land. She focused on what would be popular, de-emphasizing her political views, and won growing acclaim. Her career soared when a British commercial for Chanel used her 1958 recording of "My Baby Just Cares for Me," which then became a hit in Europe.

Nina Simone moved back to Europe -- first to the Netherlands then to the South of France in 1991. She published her biography, I Put a Spell on You, and continued to record and perform.

There were several run-ins with the law in the 90s in France, as Nina Simone shot a rifle at rowdy neighbors and left the scene of an accident in which two motorcyclists were injured. She paid fines and was put on probation, and was required to seek psychological counseling.

In 1995, she won ownership of 52 of her master recordings in a San Francisco court, and in 94-95 she had what she described as "a very intense love affair" -- "it was like a volcano." In her last years, Nina Simone was sometimes seen in a wheelchair between performances. She died April 21, 2003, in her adopted homeland, France.

In a 1969 interview with Phyl Garland, Nina Simone said:

There's no other purpose, so far as I'm concerned, for us except to reflect the times, the situations around us and the things we're able to say through our art, the things that millions of people can't say. I think that's the function of an artist and, of course, those of us who are lucky leave a legacy so that when we're dead, we also live on. That's people like Billie Holiday and I hope that I will be that lucky, but meanwhile, the function, so far as I'm concerned, is to reflect the times, whatever that might be.

Nina Simone is often classified as a jazz singer, but this is what she had to say in 1997 (in an interview with Brantley Bardin):

To most white people, jazz means black and jazz means dirt and that's not what I play. I play black classical music. That's why I don't like the term "jazz," and Duke Ellington didn't like it either -- it's a term that's simply used to identify black people."

Judy Collins' version of "I Think It's Going to Rain Today" was one I listened to repeatedly in the late 1960s (the old long blonde, guitar strumming college days).

Ok, so I listened to Neil Diamond a lot in the 70s and 80s. I admit it.

Sung by the composer, Randy Newman:

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


I make ONE little trip to Mexico and everyone's still talking about it. SHEESH!

It's Wednesday ....... must be video day!

Need a Mind Break?

After reading the news online and watching it on TV this morning I needed a mind break.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The Face of the New Young Republicans

Here's the face of the woman, Audra Shay, thought to become the head of the Young Republicans tomorrow:

Here are the words posted to her Facebook account (post now deleted due to someone's pointing this out):

“Obama Bin Lauden [sic] is the new terrorist… Muslim is on there side [sic]… need to take this country back from all of these mad coons… and illegals,”

Here is her response to this post:

“You tell em Eric! lol.”

Someone tell me how this should be the attitude of the NEW Young Republicans.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

I Hate 4:00 O'Clock

So I fixed myself a nice, big Gibson (Tanqueray with onions in a black, skull embossed martini glass and oh, ya, I have the black skull martini shaker, too) and turned on a prerecorded version of "The Cleaner."

Now, I've never seen "The Cleaner" before. Came across it the other day and it had two things going for it: dark and dark. I adore anything dark in nature, and I adore dark men. Benjamin Bratt. Need I say more? Tall, intelligent, mysterious, gorgeous, enigmatic, dark hair, dark eyes. Next to Superman, my perfection in a guy.

So here I am, sipping an absolutely gorgeous Gibson, watching an absolutely gorgeous man. Made me wonder why I need to do this at 4:00 p.m. on a Thursday afternoon.

Because I HATE 4:00 O'Clock. Hate it. Just plain despise it. So this is how I get past it.

Why, you may wonder? So do I. No doubt has something to do with childhood. Don't most things? Whatever it is, I don't remember it. I just know I despise sunny afternoons, especially 4:00 in the afternoon.

Add to that it's an hour before you leave work when you hate your job (had a lot of those when I was supporting my kids by myself, that's for dang sure), it's the hottest part of the afternoon (I hate HOT), and it's the lead-in to a lonesome evening. Yes, I had many of those in my past. Evenings when I was home alone with my wee kids, husband out doing whatever he was doing (a lifetime ago). Evenings when I so wanted to go out and be young, but I had two babies at home. Plenty of those.

Those were times when I suffered as a child suffers, without accepting the consequences of my decisions and consciously deciding to change them. Those were the times when people around me also suffered the consequences of my poor decision making ability.

So you might say, "Well, that was then ..... this is now." So do I. All the time. I'm much older, much wiser, and yet still tied to my past. What is this hold the past has on us which not only disallows a path towards BETTER, but the emotional patterns reach out with their nostalgic claws to keep us in our past's methodology?

I see it in my Mother, now 95 years old, who seemingly has never changed in all her years. I see it in others who think they've gotten past their patterns via therapy, yet still they repeat, repeat, repeat, whether it's marriages, jobs, or just their everyday despairing behavior.

Is this the human condition? Or is the human condition, along with these ties to our pasts, the tools with which to grow to our own state of Nirvana?

I think it's best to find out now.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

And Here She Is!

Here it is, Sarah Palin's resignation speech in its entirety, copied from her website. When have we seen so many exclamation points in one place? Eloquence-r-not-us.

The woman quotes her parents' refrigerator magnet.

Hi Alaska, I appreciate speaking directly to you, the people I serve, as your Governor.

People who know me know that besides faith and family, nothing's more important to me than our beloved Alaska. Serving her people is the greatest honor I could imagine.

I want Alaskans to grasp what can be in store for our state. We were purchased as a territory because a member of President Abe Lincoln's cabinet, William Seward, providentially saw in this great land, vast riches, beauty, strategic placement on the globe, and opportunity. He boldly looked "North to the Future". But he endured such ridicule and mocking for his vision for Alaska, remember the adversaries scoffed, calling this "Seward's Folly". Seward withstood such disdain as he chose the uncomfortable, unconventional, but right path to secure Alaska, so Alaska could help secure the United States.

People who know me know that besides faith and family, nothing's more important to me than our beloved Alaska.

Alaska’s mission – to contribute to America. We’re strategic in the world as the air crossroads of the world, as a gatekeeper of the continent. Bold visionaries knew this - Alaska would be part of America's great destiny.

Our destiny to be reached by responsibly developing our natural resources. This land, blessed with clean air, water, wildlife, minerals, and oil and gas. It's energy! God gave us energy.

So to serve the state is a humbling responsibility, because I know in my soul that Alaska is of such import, for America’s security, in our very volatile world. And you know me by now, I promised even four years ago to show my independence… no more conventional “politics as usual”.

And we are doing well! My administration's accomplishments speak for themselves. We work tirelessly for Alaskans.

We aggressively and responsibly develop our resources because they were created to be used to better our world... to help people... and we protect the environment and Alaskans (the resource owners) foremost with our policies.

Here’s some of the things we’ve done:

We created a petroleum integrity office to oversee safe development. We held the line for Alaskans on Point Thomson – and finally for the first time in decades – they’re drilling for oil and gas.

We have AGIA, the gasline project – a massive bi-partisan victory (the vote was 58 to 1!) – also succeeding as intended - protecting Alaskans as our clean natural gas will flow to energize us, and America, through a competitive, pro-private sector project. This is the largest private sector energy project, ever. This is energy independence.

And ACES – another bipartisan effort – is working as intended and industry is publicly acknowledging its success. Our new oil and gas “clear and equitable formula” is so Alaskans will no longer be taken advantage of. ACES incentivizes new exploration and development and jobs that were previously not going to happen with a monopolized North Slope oil basin.

We cleaned up previously accepted unethical actions; we ushered in bi-partisan Ethics Reform.

We also slowed the rate of government growth, we worked with the Legislature to save billions of dollars for the future, and I made no lobbyist friends with my hundreds of millions of dollars in budget vetoes... but living beyond our means today is irresponsible for tomorrow.

We took government out of the dairy business and put it back into private-sector hands – where it should be.

We provided unprecedented support for education initiatives, and with the right leadership, finally filled long-vacant public safety positions. We built a sub-Cabinet on Climate Change and took heat from Outside special interests for our biologically-sound wildlife management for abundance.

We broke ground on the new prison.

And we made common sense conservative choices to eliminate personal luxuries like the jet, the chef, the junkets... the entourage.

And the Lt. Governor and I said "no" to our pay raises.

So much success in this first term – and with this success I am proud to take credit... for hiring the right people! Our goal was to achieve a gasline project, more fair oil and gas valuation, and ethics reform in four years. We did it in two. It’s because of the people… good public servants surrounding the Governor's office, with servants' hearts and astounding work ethic... they are Alaska's success!

We are doing well! I wish you'd hear more from the media of your state's progress and how we tackle Outside interests - daily - special interests that would stymie our state. Even those debt-ridden stimulus dollars that would force the heavy hand of federal government into our communities with an “all-knowing attitude” – I have taken the slings and arrows with that unpopular move to veto because I know being right is better than being popular. Some of those dollars would harm Alaska and harm America – I resisted those dollars because of the obscene national debt we’re forcing our children to pay, because of today’s Big Government spending; it’s immoral and doesn’t even make economic sense!

Another accomplishment – our Law Department protected states’ rights – two huge U.S. Supreme Court reversals came down against that liberal Ninth Circuit, deciding in our state’s favor over the last two weeks. We’re protectors of our Constitution – federalists protect states’ rights as mandated in 10th amendment.

But you don’t hear much of the good stuff in the press anymore, do you?

Some say things changed for me on August 29th last year – the day John McCain tapped me to be his running-mate – I say others changed.

Let me speak to that for a minute.

Political operatives descended on Alaska last August, digging for dirt. The ethics law I championed became their weapon of choice. Over the past nine months I've been accused of all sorts of frivolous ethics violations – such as holding a fish in a photograph, wearing a jacket with a logo on it, and answering reporters’ questions.

Every one – all 15 of the ethics complaints have been dismissed. We’ve won! But it hasn't been cheap - the State has wasted thousands of hours of your time and shelled out some two million of your dollars to respond to “opposition research” – that’s money not going to fund teachers or troopers – or safer roads. And this political absurdity, the “politics of personal destruction” … Todd and I are looking at more than half a million dollars in legal bills in order to set the record straight. And what about the people who offer up these silly accusations? It doesn’t cost them a dime so they’re not going to stop draining public resources – spending other peoples’ money in their game.

It’s pretty insane – my staff and I spend most of our day dealing with this instead of progressing our state now. I know I promised no more “politics as usual,” but this isn’t what anyone had in mind for Alaska.

If I have learned one thing: life is about choices!

And one chooses how to react to circumstances. You can choose to engage in things that tear down, or build up. I choose to work very hard on a path for fruitfulness and productivity. I choose not to tear down and waste precious time; but to build up this state and our country, and her industrious, generous, patriotic, free people!

Life is too short to compromise time and resources... it may be tempting and more comfortable to just keep your head down, plod along, and appease those who demand: "Sit down and shut up", but that's the worthless, easy path; that's a quitter's way out. And a problem in our country today is apathy. It would be apathetic to just hunker down and “go with the flow”.

Nah, only dead fish "go with the flow".

No. Productive, fulfilled people determine where to put their efforts, choosing to wisely utilize precious time... to build up.

And there is such a need to build up and fight for our state and our country. I choose to fight for it! And I'll work hard for others who still believe in free enterprise and smaller government; strong national security for our country and support for our troops; energy independence; and for those who will protect freedom and equality and life... I'll work for and campaign for those proud to be American, and those who are inspired by our ideals and won't deride them.

I will support others who seek to serve, in or out of office, for the right reasons, and I don't care what party they're in or no party at all. Inside Alaska – or Outside Alaska.

But I won’t do it from the Governor’s desk.

I've never believed that I, nor anyone else, needs a title to do this - to make a difference... to help people. So I choose, for my State and my family, more "freedom" to progress, all the way around... so that Alaska may progress... I will not seek re-election as Governor.

And so as I thought about this announcement that I wouldn’t run for re-election and what it means for Alaska, I thought about how much fun some governors have as lame ducks… travel around the state, to the Lower 48 (maybe), overseas on international trade – as so many politicians do. And then I thought – that’s what’s wrong – many just accept that lame duck status, hit the road, draw the paycheck, and “milk it”. I’m not putting Alaska through that – I promised efficiencies and effectiveness! That’s not how I am wired. I am not wired to operate under the same old “politics as usual.” I promised that four years ago – and I meant it.

It’s not what is best for Alaska.

I am determined to take the right path for Alaska even though it is unconventional and not so comfortable.

With this announcement that I am not seeking re-election… I’ve determined it’s best to transfer the authority of governor to Lieutenant Governor Parnell; and I am willing to do so, so that this administration – with its positive agenda, its accomplishments, and its successful road to an incredible future – can continue without interruption and with great administrative and legislative success.

My choice is to take a stand and effect change – not hit our heads against the wall and watch valuable state time and money, millions of your dollars, go down the drain in this new environment. Rather, we know we can effect positive change outside government at this moment in time, on another scale, and actually make a difference for our priorities – and so we will, for Alaskans and for Americans.

Let me go back to a comfortable analogy for me – sports… basketball. I use it because you’re na├»ve if you don’t see the national full-court press picking away right now: A good point guard drives through a full court press, protecting the ball, keeping her eye on the basket… and she knows exactly when to pass the ball so that the team can win. And I’m doing that – keeping our eye on the ball that represents sound priorities – smaller government, energy independence, national security, freedom! And I know when it’s time to pass the ball – for victory.

I have given my reasons candidly and truthfully… and my last day won’t be for another few weeks so the transition will be very smooth. In fact, we will look to swear Sean in – in Fairbanks at the conclusion of our Governor’s picnics.

I do not want to disappoint anyone with my decision; all I can ask is that you trust me with this decision – but it’s no more “politics as usual”.

Some Alaskans don’t mind wasting public dollars and state time. I do. I cannot stand here as your Governor and allow millions upon millions of our dollars go to waste just so I can hold the title of Governor. And my children won’t allow it either.

Some will question the timing. Let’s just say, this decision has been in the works for awhile…

In fact, this decision comes after much consideration, and finally polling the most important people in my life - my children (where the count was unanimous... well, in response to asking: "Want me to make a positive difference and fight for ALL our children's future from outside the Governor's office?" It was four "yes's" and one "hell yeah!" The "hell yeah" sealed it - and someday I'll talk about the details of that... I think much of it had to do with the kids seeing their baby brother Trig mocked by some pretty mean-spirited adults recently.) Um, by the way, sure wish folks could ever, ever understand that we all could learn so much from someone like Trig - I know he needs me, but I need him even more... what a child can offer to set priorities right – that time is precious... the world needs more "Trigs", not fewer.

My decision was also fortified during this most recent trip to Kosovo and Landstuhl, to visit our wounded soldiers overseas, those who sacrifice themselves in war for our freedom and security… we can ALL learn from our selfless Troops… they’re bold, they don’t give up, they take a stand and know that life is short so they choose to not waste time. They choose to be productive and to serve something greater than self... and to build up their families, their states, our country. These Troops and their important missions – those are truly the worthy causes in this world and should be the public priority with time and resources and not this local / superficial wasteful political bloodsport.

May we all learn from them!

*((Gotta put First Things First))*

First things first: as Governor, I love my job and I love Alaska. It hurts to make this choice but I am doing what’s best for Alaska. I’ve explained why… though I think of the saying on my parents’ refrigerator that says “Don’t explain: your friends don’t need it and your enemies won’t believe you anyway.”

But I have given my reasons… no more “politics as usual” and I am taking my fight for what’s right – for Alaska – in a new direction.

Now, despite this, I don’t want any Alaskan dissuaded from entering politics after seeing this real “climate change” that began in August… no, we need hardworking, average Americans fighting for what’s right! And I will support you because we need you and you can effect change, and I can too on the outside.

We need those who will respect our Constitution where government’s supposed to serve from the bottom up, not move toward this top down big government take-over… but rather, will be protectors of individual rights - who also have enough common sense to acknowledge when conditions have drastically changed and are willing to call an audible and pass the ball when it’s time so the team can win! And that is what I’m doing!

Remember Alaska… America is now, more than ever, looking North to the Future. It'll be good. So God bless you, and from me and my family - to all Alaska - you have my heart.

And we will be in the capable hands of our Lieutenant Governor, Sean Parnell. And Lieutenant General Craig Campbell will assume the role of Lieutenant Governor. And it is my promise to you that I will always be standing by, ready to assist. We have a good, positive agenda for Alaska.

In the words of General MacArthur said, “We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

PS - In a big HAR moment, I pressed "publish post" to put this on my blog and was instantly entertained with an ad for SarahPAC. I only had to click on it to be taken to this: