The Mad March Of The Machiavellian’s

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Machiavellianism is “the employment of cunning and duplicity in statecraft or in general conduct.” The word comes from the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer Niccolò Machiavelli, who wrote Il Principe (The Prince), among other works.

In modern psychology, Machiavellianism is one of the dark triad personalities, characterized by a duplicitous interpersonal style, a cynical disregard for morality and a focus on self-interest and personal gain.

Since before anyone can remember there has been a subculture of psychopaths in society that if allowed, wreak havoc on our minds, our freedoms and our moral sensibilities.

Oh, and how some of us want to be just like them.

It’s like this: What’s yours is ours. Enough is never enough. Give an inch, take a mile. Black is white, up is down, 2 + 2 = 5, you’re either with us or you’re with the terrorists, etc.

It’s not an accident. Orchestrated by design to diminish the individual in favor of the collective, who are then in turn manipulated into propagating the designs of the architects of these deceptions.

But none are so deceived as those who falsely believe they can think. I sort of came up with that one on my own by I did borrow the structural outline from Goethe.

And now here we stand, watching… er, actually sitting in our collective La-Z Boy recliners as it may be, the electoral process entitled The Mad March of the Machiavellians. And it takes place on the road where the street sign reads: To Nowhere (if you’re a Talking Heads fan, how do you like me now?).

The crowd mostly cheers, some boo and hiss. A few don’t even bother to look up from their cell phones and even a fewer still are commissioned by George Soros to become useful idiot saboteurs. But none the less they’re all here in full view, like a wart on the ass of humanity in a g-string bikini.

And as the streaming, seemingly endless parade struts, goose steps and stumbles before us I’m left to contemplate where we really are at this point in history. Because these Mach’s aren’t just clowns who toot their horns and bitch slap each other for the crowd’s amusement.

Not only is the game rigged but the jig is up. The naked emperor has been running about with his junk flopping around and while some news anchors report on these incidents, the general public seemed content to post Bernie Sanders speeches on Facebook in hopes of convincing the rest of us that he really cares. And even better yet had chance of winning the election.

“…and if you support Donald Trump, unfriend me now,” is one post I’ve seen recently.

Hmmmm.. That ‘divide and conquer’ strategy never seems to fail. At least as far back as anyone can remember.

On one side the public is in such a stupor, such a malaise that they’ve given up any hope for a genuine democracy, as if there was such a thing. They’ve been denigrated to lay down their freedom for the illusion of an Egalitarian Society that will right the ship by simply disarming the criminals and force feeding all the starving children in the world toxic GMO’s and mind-numbing vaccines.

On the other side we have a public that is in such a stupor, such a malaise that they’ve given up any hope for freedom. They’ve been agitated into submitting to the aggressive speeches and circus dramas with empty, delusive promises of what could be or at least what used to be.

Are you detecting a pattern here?

It was an old Don Henley lyric that espoused, “…don’t look back, you can never look back.” Yeah, The Boys of Summer.‘ A song about a middle-aged man reminiscing on a long lost girlfriend during simpler times.

The Boys of Summer are gone and in their place is the New World Order. The way things are, they’ll have their way. The Machiavellian March is simply a distraction to give all the hope of something different. Just this once, eh?

Again, there is no going back. And the idea of what was is such an absurdity, any person with a modicum of insight into the history of America knows it’s all propaganda.

Capable and driven? To put it mildly. Certainly, that is a better description of America’s past. But how does one define great?

Between all the smatterings of goodness lay whole tribes of slaughtered natives and the wildlife they relied upon.  A few dropped atomic bombs on the Japanese, banker funded wars, a few million dead Koreans, Vietnamese, Iraqis, the legacies of the Mormons and the KKK. And don’t forget memorials to Lincoln, JFK and MLK.

not-elect-hillary-secret

Does that sound like something we want to return to?

Then there is the legacy of our Soviet style outcome based educational programs. Oh, you mean public schools. Now let’s get hard core with Common Core! George Orwell’s blueprint is almost complete.

This all bloomed into boom and bust economies. Slave labor waged goods imported to millions barely getting by on government assistance. Well, actually it’s the public’s assistance but the government has to run it through their greedy institutions so they can get their cut.

No president is going to come in and fix all that. Ladies and gentlemen, presidents don’t fix problems. Like a place holder in the NFL, they simply position the ball for the real place kickers.

I can hear it now. “Stop being such a pessimist. Your negativity is ruining my buzz!”

Is it the rule of law that has made this country so great? The laws that grant our freedoms? Ah, yes…the Constitution that grants us liberty and justice.

There’s a flip side to that coin. If you glimpse into the illusion that government’s laws grant you your rights, you’ll see how in the reverse they take your rights away. It’s all smoke and mirrors but the public laps it up like a black dog at a water bowl in 100 degree heat.

I think George Washington said it best:

george-washington-government-is-not-reason-it-is-not-eloquence-it-is-force

Lawyers! That’s it! The Constitution “made this country great” which means our laws are superior to other nation’s laws which by extension means lawyers are our champions in upholding America’s greatness. Or former greatness, or…whatever.

I’ll quote a scene with Al Pacino in his excellent performance as Lucifer in the movie The Devil’s Advocate.‘

His son asks him, “Why lawyers, why the law?”

Lucifer responds, “Because the law, my boy, puts us into everything. It’s the ultimate back stage pass, it’s the new priesthood, baby. Did you know there are more students in law school than there are lawyers walking the Earth? We’re coming out! Guns blazin’! The two of you, all of us…acquittal, after acquittal, after acquittal until the stench of it reaches so high and far into Heaven, it chokes the whole fuckin’ lot of them!”

Your honor, I rest my case.

 

 

Resources/Related:

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Niccolo Machiavelli – the Cunning Critic of Political Reason | History …

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Fear & Loathing in America after 9/11

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“This is going to be a very expensive war, and Victory is not guaranteed ― for anyone,”

Just hours after the terror attacks on 9/11/01, Hunter S. Thompson wrote an article for ESPN entitled Fear & Loathing in America. In it, he made some disturbingly accurate predictions, this one by far the most chilling:

“The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for Peace in Our Time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it: We are At War now — with somebody — and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives. It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy.”

Though Thompson put the death toll for that day at 20,000 (I’m guessing based on flawed reports going around that day), I couldn’t help but wonder if the good doc, in his infinite, drugged-up wisdom, was alluding to the lives that would be lost because of what had happened that day. He goes on to say: “We are going to punish somebody for this attack, but just who or what will be blown to smithereens for it is hard to say. Maybe Afghanistan, maybe Pakistan or Iraq, or possibly all three at once.” Indeed, America has made its presence known in all three of those countries over the last 12 years, exact death tolls unknown.

We’re still fighting the last war (throwing Cold War money at countries that barely have electricity), still warding off the last attack (screening shoes and underwear at airports), still looking back in fear, but failing to avert the unavoidable. Domestic terror hit us again last week, and I don’t believe there could have been anything done to stop it. To limit its damage, yes (perhaps it could not have been so easy for those boys to obtain guns–thanks, Senate!), but ultimately we’ll always be At War with the sick minds among us.

When terrorists attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, no one knew exactly what the future would hold.

However, writer Hunter S. Thompson turned out to be amazingly prescient.

– Photo: Hunter S. Thompson photographed at home on Owl Farm in Woody Creek, Colorado

HST, in his essay hours after 9/11

It was just after dawn in Woody Creek, Colo., when the first plane hit the World Trade Center in New York City on Tuesday morning, and as usual I was writing about sports. But not for long. Football suddenly seemed irrelevant, compared to the scenes of destruction and utter devastation coming out of New York on TV.

Even ESPN was broadcasting war news. It was the worst disaster in the history of the United States, including Pearl Harbor, the San Francisco earthquake and probably the Battle of Antietam in 1862, when 23,000 were slaughtered in one day. The Battle of the World Trade Center lasted about 99 minutes and cost 20,000 lives in two hours (according to unofficial estimates as of midnight Tuesday). The final numbers, including those from the supposedly impregnable Pentagon, across the Potomac River from Washington, likely will be higher. Anything that kills 300 trained firefighters in two hours is a world-class disaster. And it was not even Bombs that caused this massive damage.

No nuclear missiles were launched from any foreign soil, no enemy bombers flew over New York and Washington to rain death on innocent Americans. No. It was four commercial jetliners. They were the first flights of the day from American and United Airlines, piloted by skilled and loyal U.S. citizens, and there was nothing suspicious about them when they took off from Newark, N.J., and Dulles in D.C. and Logan in Boston on routine cross-country flights to the West Coast with fully-loaded fuel tanks — which would soon explode on impact and utterly destroy the world-famous Twin Towers of downtown Manhattan’s World Trade Center.

Boom! Boom! Just like that. The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for Peace in Our Time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it:

We are At War now — with somebody — and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives.

It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy. Osama bin Laden may be a primitive “figurehead” — or even dead, for all we know — but whoever put those All-American jet planes loaded with All-American fuel into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon did it with chilling precision and accuracy. The second one was a dead-on bullseye. Straight into the middle of the skyscraper. Nothing — even George Bush’s $350 billion “Star Wars” missile defense system — could have prevented Tuesday’s attack, and it cost next to nothing to pull off.

Fewer than 20 unarmed Suicide soldiers from some apparently primitive country somewhere on the other side of the world took out the World Trade Center and half the Pentagon with three quick and costless strikes on one day. The efficiency of it was terrifying. We are going to punish somebody for this attack, but just who or what will be blown to smithereens for it is hard to say. Maybe Afghanistan, maybe Pakistan or Iraq, or possibly all three at once. Who knows? Not even the Generals in what remains of the Pentagon or the New York papers calling for WAR seem to know who did it or where to look for them.

This is going to be a very expensive war, and Victory is not guaranteed — for anyone, and certainly not for anyone as baffled as George W. Bush. All he knows is that his father started the war a long time ago, and that he, the goofy child-President, has been chosen by Fate and the global Oil industry to finish it Now. He will declare a National Security Emergency and clamp down Hard on Everybody, no matter where they live or why. If the guilty won’t hold up their hands and confess, he and the Generals will ferret them out by force. Good luck. He is in for a profoundly difficult job — armed as he is with no credible Military Intelligence, no witnesses and only the ghost of Bin Laden to blame for the tragedy. OK. It is 24 hours later now, and we are not getting much information about the Five Ws of this thing. The numbers out of the Pentagon are baffling, as if Military Censorship has already been imposed on the media. It is ominous. The only news on TV comes from weeping victims and ignorant speculators. The lid is on. Loose Lips Sink Ships. Don’t say anything that might give aid to The Enemy.

 

Dr. Hunter S. Thompsons books include Hell’s Angels, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72, The Proud Highway, Better Than Sex and The Rum Diary. His recent book, Fear and Loathing in America, has been released. A regular contributor to various national and international publications. Before his untimely death in 2005, Thompson lived in a fortified compound near Aspen, Colo. His column, “Hey, Rube,” appeared each Monday on Page 2.

Hunter S. Thompson’s Conspiratorial 9/11 Interview: “The Public Version of the News is Never Really What Happened”

Having read almost everything the prolific Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas author Hunter S. Thompson ever wrote, I don’t know if I would call him paranoid, per se. Nor do I know if I would call him not paranoid. He certainly trusted no entity with power, especially not governments, and really especially not the United States government. So by the time September 11, 2001 came around, he had little goodwill to spare for any of the major players involved in its aftermath.

A year later, Australia’s ABC Radio National got Thompson’s assessment of the situation. Host Mick O’Regan opens the now famous interview above by asking how he thought the U.S. media had performed in the new post-9/11 reality. “‘Shamefully’ is a word that comes to mind,” responds Thompson. “American journalism I think has been cowed and intimidated by the massive flag-sucking, this patriotic orgy that the White House keeps whipping up. You know if you criticise the President it’s unpatriotic and there’s something wrong with you, you may be a terrorist.” And does he think 9/11 “worked in favor of the Bush Administration?” For Thompson’s full answer, blogger Scratchingdog tracked down the original recording of the interview, not the edited version actually aired on ABC, and heard this:

Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. And I have spent enough time on the inside of, well, in the White House and you know, campaigns and I’ve known enough people who do these things, think this way, to know that the public version of the news or whatever event, is never really what happened. And these people I think are willing to take that even further, so I don’t assume that I know the truth of what went on that day, and yeah, just looking around and looking for who had the motive, who had the opportunity, who had the equipment, who had the will. Yeah, these people were looting the treasury and they knew the economy was going into a spiral downward.

9/11 conspiracy theorists have made much of this response and other Thompsonian analysis found in the unedited interview, going so far as to suggest that maybe — just maybe — the writer died three years later of something other than suicide. Given Thompson’s compulsion to speak truth to power, and sometimes to wave firearms around in front of it, any fan of his work can’t help but harshly scrutinize, and often pre-emptively dismiss, any and all “official stories” they happen to hear. We’ll never know whether Thompson would have approved of the “9/11 Truth” movement in the forms it has taken today, but they do share his spirit of creative distrust. And perhaps a touch of paranoia gave his writing its distinctive verve. Nobody moves into what they unfailingly describe as a “fortified compound,” after all, without at least a little bit of it.

 

 

 

Comments:

  1. By: Cuneform
    09.11.2014 @ 4:15 PM

    Depp narrates this passage in that Gonzo documentary on his life that’s currently on the Netflix.

  2. By: IrishCream
    09.11.2014 @ 4:33 PM

    “Also, we’ll elect some black guy as president in 7 years. Okay, maybe I smoked too much peyote if I believe that…”

  3. By: japanesetable
    09.11.2014 @ 4:38 PM

    “It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy.”
    except that that didn’t really happen.

    • By: indieguy
      09.11.2014 @ 4:46 PM

      Idk that seems pretty spot on

    • By: onemanmob
      09.11.2014 @ 4:58 PM

      If anything he is 100% right. the Jihadist’s have no state and are very nomadic, meaning they can move freely through territories while the US and their allies get tied up in foreign policy red tape. On the flip side of that the American Government can pretty much point at anyone wearing a turban and scream “TERRORIST! GET EM!” and get a free pass at blowing up a fuck load of women and children because they happen to have a different belief system. The general public will go along with it because most of them don’t give two shits about a bunch of brown people on the other side of the planet.

    • By: onemanmob
      09.11.2014 @ 6:29 PM

      @TedStevens If you say so.

    • By: Shadowtag
      09.11.2014 @ 8:09 PM

      Having seen so many assholes immediately equate anything less than martial law on anything that’s not America with liberal extremism, I’m tempted to blow my brains out too.

    • By: japanesetable
      09.11.2014 @ 9:13 PM

      ahh, shadowtag – I wasn’t talking about america though. to suggest Christianity is america and only america went to war isn’t what happened.
      ted, you need to switch to chamomile.

    • By: DEVO
      09.12.2014 @ 12:38 AM

      Bin Laden’s own words: “Personally neither I nor my brothers saw evidence of American help.”

      He spoke English?

    • By: golfpanther
      09.12.2014 @ 4:54 PM

      Devo, yes he spoke English. He was taught by an Irishwoman named Breda O’Brien when he was 20.

  4. By: Cajun Boy
    09.11.2014 @ 4:51 PM

    It’s the internet, asshole. Just because you were on Deadspin earlier today doesn’t mean everyone else who reads this site was. And you don’t think other sites don’t post stuff they get from us? Gawker Media sites link back to us as sources all the damn time. It’s the way media has worked for decades. The New York Times writes about something, then so does the Washington Post, etc. Finally, go fuck yourself.

  5. By: Cajun Boy
    09.11.2014 @ 4:55 PM

    As I explained to someone on Twitter just now, there are no photos of Thompson available to us in the photo service archives we subscribe to (Getty Images and Shutterstock). We can’t just pull a photo of Thompson that pops up in a Google image search and use it like some jerkoff with a Tumblr can. We run the risk of getting sued by the photographer who took whatever photo we use, or by an agency that represents the photographer or his/her estate. That’s probably why many internet postings about HST use still from the movie rather than actual images of him.

  6. By: ElDiabloBlanco
    09.11.2014 @ 5:01 PM

    THIS!

  7. By: Cajun Boy
    09.11.2014 @ 5:05 PM

    Also, if you go back and look at your precious Deadspin post that I sourced, it didn’t originate there either. They got it from Glenn Greenwald. I’m sure they’re committing “Buzzfeed journalism at it’s finest” too by “straight up apeing shit,” right?

  8. By: fate.scion
    09.11.2014 @ 5:17 PM

    Truly a genius that must have watched the world news at least once, maybe twice.

  9. By: Pencil-Necked Geek
    09.11.2014 @ 5:22 PM

    I don’t know about you, Baltimore Dan, but I, personally, don’t have the time or inclination to visit all the websites every day. So if stories are “shared,” that’s pretty helpful to me.

  10. By: Nerd Convocation
    09.11.2014 @ 5:57 PM

    “It’s the internet, asshole. Just because you were on Deadspin earlier today doesn’t mean everyone else who reads this site was.”

    +1. That right there is why I come to this site. Awesome post. Haters always gonna haaaaate…..

    • By: CaptainCharisma
      09.11.2014 @ 8:38 PM

      Uproxx roxx my soxx!

  11. By: Rawhead Wrecks
    09.11.2014 @ 6:01 PM

    Hire a cartoonist to draw a caricature of any famous person you can’t get a photo of.

  12. By: Rawhead Wrecks
    09.11.2014 @ 6:05 PM

    btw, on the right-hand side of this page there is a link to another Uproxx article with a Hunter S. Thompson photo (and you link to that article in yours) but I understand possibly you didn’t want to re-use the same photo so soon.

    But seriously, there are probably plenty of people who’d draw a decent portrait of just about anyone and sign away their rights for $10.00.

  13. By: Howard J. Barnett
    09.11.2014 @ 7:13 PM

    “Not sure how Hunter S. Thompson was ever able to ever be lucid enough to achieve such spooky clairvoyance — what with his booze and cocaine-laden daily routine — but dude basically predicted the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks less than 24 hours after they happened”

    I suggest you start with Fear And Loathing On The Campaign Trail ’72, then on the The Great Shark Hunt. Hunter was extremely astute when it came to politics.

  14. By: SatanHimself
    09.11.2014 @ 8:49 PM

    Find a non-Google search engine and ask “Who benefited most from 9/11?” or perhaps “insider trading 9/11”.

    Now ask yourself exactly why the US invaded Iraq when most of the hijackers were Saudi…

    And then ask yourself at what point you just decided that you weren’t going to get up in arms about this because there are just far too many great TV shows on nowadays and Apple has a new wearable tracking device coming out and why hasn’t Obama just fixed all this yet…?

    • By: DEVO
      09.12.2014 @ 12:40 AM

      it’s the illuminati man! you know! the cabal of satanic christian higher ups who work with the jews to bring down world governments by working as part of the world government! they also fix fifa games and record beyonce albums… i think.

    • By: SatanHimself
      09.12.2014 @ 8:14 AM

      Yup… The new assassination is marginalization.

      If someone has the gall to point out that there is ample sufficient evidence that 9/11 was something that was completely preventable and in the 13 years since it happened it has been used as an excuse to strip citizens of their rights, then all you have to do is drop the words Illuminati, Zionist, Tinfoil and Conspiracy and all thoughts of dissent go away.

      Back to isolating yourself in front of a screen. Enjoy your binge-watching. Go shopping.

    • By: Alcoholics Gratuitous
      09.12.2014 @ 6:30 PM

      Stirring up these arguments makes me believe that you are satan, or at least mojo-jojo.

    • By: Joewilliesfumanchu
      09.13.2014 @ 9:44 PM

      @Alcoholics Gratuitous ……He’s not Satan himself, just the devil’s advocate

    • By: Nicatron
      09.12.2015 @ 12:05 AM

      @Joewilliesfumanchu Are you referring to that excellent documentary The Devil’s Advocate that laid out all of 9/11?

      John Milton: Don’t get too cocky my boy. No matter how good you are don’t ever let them see you coming. That’s the gaffe my friend. You gotta keep yourself small. Innocuous. Be the little guy. You know, the nerd… the leper… shit-kickin’ surfer. Look at me.
      [stops and pauses]
      John Milton: Underestimated from day one. You’d never think I was a master of the universe, now would ya?

      How did we miss the signs? From now on I will wear my tinfoil helmet to sleep at night. I don’t want to miss the obvious signs that another Twin Towers type attack would obviously be an inside job. Those lizard people are stealing my thoughts.

  15. By: Pastor Swope
    09.11.2014 @ 10:35 PM

    America became involved in this war in the 80s when Jihadists in Lebanon killed a bunch of Marines. It has been going on long before that, and we are just a bigger target. And it will be continuing long after we are dead in our graves. I love Hunter, but this is just as big of a knee jerk reaction on his part as others calling for blood.

  16. By: Hobo Spices
    09.11.2014 @ 11:29 PM

    Giving HST a handy on the Internet is so 2005.

  17. By: Don Rhoades
    09.11.2014 @ 11:46 PM

    @Cajun Boy Greenwald got it from me. Even he is slacking in his journalism these days. The bastage gave me no attribution, but nonetheless Hunter was heard today: [twitter.com]

  18. By: Joel Yantis
    09.12.2014 @ 12:13 AM

    Was going to repost, but what he said was so general it would be true no matter who was president. “Something big happened, people are mad, shit’s gonna go down.” No shit! Really?

  19. By: NotNotLickingToads
    09.12.2014 @ 12:27 AM

    You guys talking about Clark W. Grizman?

  20. By: Mike Tokars
    09.12.2014 @ 2:15 AM

    None of you deserve hands or fingertips or keyboards—Or anything else,for that matter, that gives one access to public forum in this foul Year of Our Lord two-thousand and fourteen. #resipsaloquitur

    p.s. It’s a great photo.—M.

  21. By: Rbitencourt USA
    09.12.2014 @ 3:50 AM

    Handmade Cannabis Leaf Pillow [www.rbitencourtusa.com]

  22. By: Alibertarianmind
    09.12.2014 @ 7:36 AM

    Never heard of Ron Paul I take it?

  23. By: SatanHimself
    09.12.2014 @ 8:19 AM

    Those of us who have studied History, Political Science and Sociology saw this coming a mile away.

    Everything that happened after 9/11 is a prime example of the corporate, military and government leaders following the rule “Never let a good crisis go to waste”.

    Insert standard jab against getting a “Liberal Arts Degree” as a way to marginalize independent thought amongst the herd.

  24. By: MistaMista
    09.12.2014 @ 10:17 AM

    “Not sure how Hunter S. Thompson was ever able to ever be lucid enough to achieve such spooky clairvoyance — what with his booze and cocaine-laden daily routine — but dude basically predicted the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks less than 24 hours after they happened”

    The man, apart from everything else society labeled him as, was first and foremost a journalist. And a damn good one at that. In fact, he was so good that he could get tanked on a clinic’s worth of drugs and produce an anthology’s worth of quality work. Unfortunately, society at large only seems to know him as some vague drug-fueled figure that a kooky Johnny Depp character was based on, which is the kind of audience I’m guessing that statement was aimed at.

    He predicted the aftermath because he was a keen political observer and had been in the game of writing on politics since most of our parents were still learning to roll joints. I’d even go so far as to say that his stream-of-consciousness, ‘gonzo’ reporting style helped shape informal writing styles (like this blog) and made the personal voice in a a news article a thing that could be respected. C’mon, it’s just too easy to start off with the drug thing for some kind of cheap laugh–it’s lazy writing. I suppose your editors want you to be ‘entertaining,’ in which case I don’t blame you for doing your job. But Thompson was a great American writer/thinker and I think should be respected as such. Anyway, thanks for posting. Maybe some of the kids’ll put down their Stephanie Meyer for a while.

    • By: ALXMAC
      09.14.2014 @ 8:24 PM

      +1 Get off my lawn

  25. By: Tom Degan
    09.12.2014 @ 10:29 AM

    The good doctor was always a step or two ahead of the rest of us – drugs and alcohol notwithstanding. The seeds of America’s eventual – inevitable – self destruction were sown on that nasty, unforgettable day. The mistake of sending a half-witted frat boy like George W. Bush to the White House in 2000 is being compounded with each passing month. One hundred years from now, the president – who won’t even be born for another half century – will still, on a daily basis, be dealing with the damage that the Bush Mob did to their once-great nation so many generations before. This is the legacy that these murderous assholes have left to posterity.

    Was this a great country or what!

    [www.tomdegan.blogspot.com]

    Tom Degan

    • By: Casey Rose
      09.12.2014 @ 12:26 PM

      Amen Tom! Truth being spoken here! It still smacks of some kind of conspiracy with all the peripheral tie-ins to the Saudis! Martial laws in the skies above U.S. but we need to fly the Saudis out for their safety? But after all, the conspiracy fallacy is shredded by the mere fact that the BUSH regime was in power and they would’ve had to come up with this stuff, and that is laughable!

  26. By: Bloody Lethal
    09.12.2014 @ 10:34 AM

    So basically a no shit scenario and then a swipe at President Bush all read in Johnny Depp’s voice?

    • By: Alcoholics Gratuitous
      09.12.2014 @ 6:33 PM

      I also imagined Benicio Del Toro saying, “Damn Right!” after each paragraph.

  27. By: Carl Spackler
    09.12.2014 @ 10:43 AM

    Um … pretty much everyone in America knew we were going to at minimum bomb the shit out of some brown people in retaliation. There is no great revelation here. I’m guessing the author of the article was too young to be paying attention to the news in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 to realize this …

    • By: poonTASTIC
      09.15.2014 @ 11:01 AM

      Yes, but pre 9/11 I don’t recall 1/2 of our country associating all Muslims with terrorist as they do now. Nor does there appear to be an end in sight. Nor do we even know who the F we’re fighting most of the time or where they are located. So in that sense, yeah he was pretty spot on.

  28. By: Kubo
    09.12.2014 @ 1:34 PM

    Came to say exactly this, @K.G. Hunter S. Thompson truly is a soothsayer.

  29. By: Rel77
    09.12.2014 @ 1:46 PM

    Bin laden made it pretty clear from the beginning what the game plan was; draw us into Afghanistan and bleed us dry financially, which would lead to a collapse just like the Soviet Union. Since that didn’t work, this same approach continues in other parts of the Middle East and beyond. When you add Syria we will have open ended air wars in six different countries – Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen, with no end in sight. We need a different approach, one that’s strictly covert and doesn’t let ISIS use footage of American troops invading foreign countries, which is proaganda gold for them.

  30. By: TheCensoredMSol
    09.12.2014 @ 1:58 PM

    Seems like a real asshole to me. Way to come together with the rest of your countrymen, and put your politics and religious prejudices on hold for a day of two. Dick.

    Too bad this guy’s dead. More like Hunter Ass Thompson.

    • By: Sledge Rockwell
      09.12.2014 @ 3:11 PM

      How dare he be an honest voice instead of running to Walmart and buying as many US Flags (made in Korea) as possible to show his patriotism..

      What an asshat, amiright?

  31. By: Sam Uhrich
    09.12.2014 @ 2:20 PM

    Do the man some justice and use a photo of Hunter instead of Johnny Depp?

  32. By: Jeans Ambrose
    09.12.2014 @ 4:02 PM

    Hey guys, jihad means to struggle, strive and exert effort. It is a central and broad Islamic concept that includes struggle against evil inclinations within oneself, struggle to improve the quality of life in society, struggle in the battlefield for self-defense (e.g., having a standing army for national defense), or fighting against tyranny or oppression.

    Extremist Muslims who commit crimes like those carried out by al-Qaeda and now ISIL should be called criminals. We must not legitimize their actions by calling them jihadists.

    /dick joke

    • By: Alcoholics Gratuitous
      09.12.2014 @ 6:34 PM

      They are called criminals.

  33. By: Alcoholics Gratuitous
    09.12.2014 @ 6:35 PM

    I thought it was very astute calling attention to the price and longevity of this war, considering the powers that be were selling us on a swift decisive action that would liberate the Afghanis and Iraqis.

  34. By: jdgalt
    09.12.2014 @ 11:39 PM

    Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. This is Hunter’s, and he’s as stopped as you can get!

  35. By: Steve Guptill
    09.13.2014 @ 5:12 PM

    IT`S NOT HARD, I wrote into my high school day planner book they made us have, a prediction of the same future, nails who they are going to blame, and the body count from 9/11 and those were made within the hour of the attack.

    Howard Stern WOULD scream for blood, he is a ZIONIST MOUTH PIECE.

  36. By: Chris Mayer
    09.14.2014 @ 4:28 AM

    Actually Cajun Boy, Getty Images has a metric ton of images of Hunter S. Thompson available for editorial use. Your logic is flawed.

  37. By: Emmett Grogan
    09.14.2014 @ 7:11 AM

    I find it much harder to understand how what Thompson said wasn’t obvious to anyone over the age of 12

  38. By: chris dennis
    09.14.2014 @ 10:42 AM

    There were literally several people who predicted what would happen more accurately before and after 9/11. I mean after it was kind of obvious what would happen…

  39. By: Diwani Kamatoden
    09.14.2014 @ 10:56 AM

    If those enemies are real brave, why they are using other elements and conceal their true identities while kilny observe the reactions to their deceptive advertisements? I think their lack of good will is their problem and they want to know if others can beat that ghost/monsters in their minds and feelings! Oops they knew it already but they can’t reveal it to their peers?another advertisements pls!

  40. By: Tyler Witt
    09.15.2014 @ 5:55 AM

    Another stupid article whom’s title doesnt fit the material at all….You’re either a troll writer or have no idea about whats actually going on. “A Christian Jihad” Wtf?. Broad generalizations “afghanistan pakistan, or iraq” o ok how specific.

  41. By: Tyler Witt
    09.15.2014 @ 5:55 AM

    Either a troll writer or you have no idea about current world events.

  42. By: Katroxx
    10.10.2014 @ 9:39 PM

    Maybe he did drugs to take his mind off what he was seeing. It can be quite painful to be a remove viewer, even a spontaneous one, but that is old school original. They have something better now; RI. Perhaps he was clairvoyant which is the same thing in an earlier word. He was definitely entertaining.

  43. By: Philip Evaul
    09.11.2015 @ 6:18 PM

    Why in the world is Hunter S. Thompson writing/broadcasting for ESPN? He is not in the remotest way connected to the world of professional sports. WTF?

  44. By: The Rage Rifter
    09.12.2015 @ 8:00 AM

    …”Not sure how Hunter S. Thompson was ever able to ever be lucid enough to achieve such spooky clairvoyance — what with his booze and cocaine-laden daily routine…”

    You should seriously investigate someone before making a comment as the one above. His routine doesn’t matter, his mind does and he’s one of the sharpest there is, your arrogance at thinking you are a great human being is limiting your success.

  45. By: Jeff Collier
    09.12.2015 @ 8:06 AM

    Sure would like to know why this is viewed as “Prophetic” – Seems pretty freakin obvious too me. If you couldn’t connect these dots then you clearly were under a rock the last 20 years.

  46. By: Hugomarink
    09.12.2015 @ 3:48 PM

    It really wasn’t all that difficult to predict what would happen after 9/11 and after Bush decided to send troops into Iraq to finish the work his Dad started.

  47. By: John F. Nihen
    09.12.2015 @ 5:22 PM

    Americans reacted to 9/11 declaring “we are at war now,” presumably with Islamic terrorists. But those of us who have been paying attention knew that Islamic terrorists had been at war with US for decades by that point. Thompson is no different and is incorrect in asserting that this was a war the George HW Bush started, This conflict is from resentments brewing for centuries and finally spilling over into European and American streets after decades of buildup – one can say from the formation of Israel in the 1940s and not be far off – while American presidents have been ineffective in addressing the threat.

  48. By: Lizanne
    09.12.2015 @ 9:39 PM

    This didn’t require any special cosmic knowledge. Hunter Thompson, like many of us, just went through life choosing to see things as they really are. Many saw the war coming … and the lies. Hunter was smart but not psychic … he just kept it real.

  49. By: Cousin Avi
    09.13.2015 @ 6:46 AM

    “Sadly, I doubt anyone was more right at the time about what was to come.”

    Sadly?
    Were you not familiar with the work of the most brutally honest political reporter working in America at that or any other time? Was there some other writer you would have expected to offer more insight or accuracy? HST had been chronicling and exposing American political venality since Nixon. There may arguably have been others from whom we might have expected half as much truth but they were too busy making sure they got invited to all the right cocktail parties.

 

 

 

 

Resources/Related:

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ESPN.com: Page 2

Fear and Loathing in America : The Brutal Odyssey of … – Amazon.com

9/12/2001: Hunter S. Thompson Saw It Coming – Daily Kos

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John of Salisbury’s Metalogicon and the Equality of Liberal Arts Education

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  When examining the historical development of society, perhaps the most determining factor is education. Education has a symbiotic relationship with society in that it is shaped by society as much as it shapes society. It provides a means by which humans can recall history as well as shape their own. This is why attempting to understand the educational character of a certain time period is important to a better understanding of the history of thought. John Of Salisbury offers us such a glimpse into the intellectual and social climate of the twelfth century through his work, Metalogicon.

The Metalogicon was written as an impassioned defense of liberal arts education, pointing to the indispensable role of education in creating virtuous and happy lives. While it is significant to the medieval development of pedagogy, it also offers insight into the corresponding social and political environment by understanding the reach and limitations of its arguments for education. The most curious insight comes, as it may seem to us, as a contrast. This is because, despite the significance given to education for a wellfunctioning society, John also emphasizes that not everyone can or should be educated. This raises the question then of what was suitable for what he termed, the “third tier” of society, and its quest for virtue and happiness.

This article will examine these two seemingly opposed ideas in their socio-historical context, but will ultimately argue that these positions are incompatible and incoherent given the potential John Of Salisbury believed liberal arts education to have. The Metalogicon is one of the best twelfth-century sources historians have regarding education during this time in history. This fact alone makes it noteworthy. During the development of Western education, there is perhaps no time more formative to modern views on education than the Middle Ages. Of the Middle Ages, the twelfth century was particularly influential in the shaping of education, and has even been called the birthplace of Western pedagogy.1 The development of liberal arts education is a valuable part of the history of education because its influence is seen even today in liberal arts colleges and general education programs. Out of this time period emerged the first universities, and while John was writing the Metalogicon, there were unparalleled numbers of students involved in courses and further alongside this, a robust discussion and debate over the best methods of education.2

These pedagogical deliberations were important to the development of liberal arts education. However, to appreciate why this is so, it will first be helpful to understand the scholastic environment surrounding the Metalogicon. The Metalogicon was written in 1159 in response to a movement seeking to lessen the emphasis placed on the trivium in education. Traditionally, when universities began, there were seven liberal arts that came to be conceptually divided into the trivium and quadrivium. The first category, regarded as the trivium, was considered to be an elementary grouping focused on language studies and included grammar, rhetoric, and dialectic. The quadrivium focused on mathmatico-physical disciplines and consisted of arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music. Historically, the liberal arts were branches of knowledge taught in order to train the free man, and the division into seven liberal arts was codified in late antiquity and popularized during the Middle Ages. John’s defense of the liberal arts demonstrates the widespread practice of these educational methods in the twelfth century. The Cornifician, most likely a pseudonym for this movement attacking the Trivium, argued that the weight placed on liberal arts in education was unnecessary.

John of Salisbury fully opposed the Cornifician movement because he thought it would undermine the entire purpose of education. According to him, education’s primary purpose was the cultivation of reason by which one discovers the path to virtue and happiness. Furthermore, this pursuit of virtue and happiness is what separated humankind from beast, and for that, it was the most important quest a human could take. The Metalogicon defends liberal education as a necessary and proper instrument, irreplaceable to the ends of social order and progress. It argues that training in the liberal arts is essential to becoming wise and successful. John of Salisbury’s own life may be a testament to the wisdom and success that a liberal arts education provides.

It is likely John was born to a poor family, although very little is known about his actual childhood circumstances apart from his own writings.3 Nevertheless, John relentlessly sought to educate himself and, despite his humble beginnings, came to have considerable authority to write on education. He pursued higher education in Paris and studied under some of the greatest masters in the twelfth century for almost twelve years. While in Paris, John studied grammar, logic, and theology extensively between 1136 and 1147. He was educated with the traditional literary and dialectical trivium, and even had some teaching experience of his own. In addition to this, he had years of experience in governmental and diplomatic affairs. With this impressive academic and political career, he was able to write his two major works, the Metalogicon and the Policraticus, from personal experience. Befittingly, his books are filled with examples rather than a philosophical examination of the topics discussed. John was one of the recognized spokesmen against the Cornificians, and he was, at the very least, acquainted with almost all of his generation’s renowned intellectual men in northwestern Europe. By the time John was writing, he was well qualified to express views on education.4

The Cornificians probably began their vocal attack on the liberal arts in the early part of the twelfth century. The term “Cornificius” became known as the symbol of an inadequately trained scholar who said more than he actually knew. John used this term rather than referencing specific opponents to avoid giving the impression of an ad hominem argument, although he did, at times, outwardly accuse his opponents of having, “bloated gluttony, puffed-up pride, obscene mouth, rapacious greed, etc…”5 Still, he attempted to focus on their doctrine and arguments in order to show the mistaken reasoning therein. The Cornificians argued that the curriculum emphasizing grammar and rhetoric was tedious and that these skills were not teachable, but rather they should come naturally to students. In this view, the ability to speak and argue well was a natural gift, and time should be spent on other educational endeavors. They believed that theoretical study could not lead to acquiring skills of eloquence or critical thinking; instead, students should focus more on practical learning, such as medicine or law. According to John, these critics spent their education overly concerned with their careers and never thoroughly studied the trivium. He rather humorously remarked:

They [the Cornificians] would probably teach that a poet cannot write poetry unless he at the same time names the verse he is using; and that the carpenter cannot make a bench unless he is simultaneously forming on his lips the word ‘bench’ or ‘wooden seat.’ The result is this hodgepodge of verbiage, reveled in by a foolish old man, who rails at those who respect the founders of the arts, since he himself could see nothing useful in these arts when he was pretending to study them.6

Equipped with a better understanding of why John wrote the Metalogicon, it becomes easier to understand his philosophy of education. Education, to him, should be aimed at the ultimate principles and purposes of life, which not surprisingly includes engaging with further philosophical questions. While he favored classical authors of philosophy, he did not neglect familiarizing himself with contemporary thought. John also drew from personal experience, and his account of human knowledge played an important role in his educational theory. John argued that truth is an objective reality, as human reason must have some object for its activity. Knowledge is ultimately found in God, but humans have limitations in reaching that truth. John gives three stages to understanding truth: (i.) opinion resulting from the senses; (ii.) science that is acquired by reason; and (iii.) wisdom that comes from understanding.7

This description of knowledge has enormous implications for his pedagogical theory. Through it, one could experience sense data, form an imperfect opinion, and then using reason, break free from deception and discover truth. John believed that human reason has a divine nature and can lead us to the truth. To attain wisdom, which John describes as a full understanding of truth, is the ultimate goal of education whereby one will come to attain virtue and happiness.

According to John, education was primarily the cultivation of reason. This also had implications for the social and political climate of a community. He considered education to be of political importance, and aptly wrote parts of the Metalogicon alongside the Policraticus, which focused on political theory.8 In fact, John regarded political and educational concerns as inseparable. The most prominent reason that he found the Cornifician attacks so dangerous was because John believed that the uprooting of liberal studies would in turn ruin humanity’s social contract.9 Without this social contract, which he considers to be the bond humans make with one another for the purpose of creating a cooperating and peaceable society, he imagines that it could result in extremes such as humankind resorting back to an animal-like state lacking the gift of eloquent speech, unable to adequately communicate. According to John, eloquence and wisdom were both essential to the education of humankind because, “Just as eloquence, unenlightened by reason, is rash and blind, so wisdom, without the power of expression, is feeble and maimed.”10 He fought against such trends because they not only threatened the educational community, but also the state of society at large.

What with the importance John of Salisbury placed on education to avoid disorder and produce a well-functioning society, it would seem to follow that everyone should embark on this quest for happiness and virtue. However, examining his political theory in the Policraticus will show otherwise. The Policraticus explored several aspects of ethical and political life in the twelfth century and, like the Metalogicon, was filled with explicit examples rather than nontangible argumentation. Here again John explained humanity’s end goal by emphasizing, “virtue contains everything to be done and happiness contains everything to be desired.”11 This was the ultimate aim for humanity, and the Policraticus sought to inaugurate a societal order that would fulfill these goals.

The Policraticus sets up John’s political theory using an analogy of the state as a body: an organic and integrated whole unified for the good of its members. This body had three tiers of government, which consisted of: (i.) the governmental authority; (ii.) those who perform governmental functions; and (iii.) the governed. This structure places the most duty and moral weight on the prince, who is the first tier of government. The prince’s obligation is to love his subjects, be self-disciplined, and educate his officials. Because of this, he is to pursue and possess virtue, but also should see to it that his officials are virtuous.

Those in the second tier of government cannot be required to be virtuous, but it is better that they are. John advised a rewards and punishment strategy to ensure good behavior from the second tier of government. This is one instance where John’s political experiences are evident in his writing. He clearly distrusted those with power and believed that they could rarely, if ever, sustain virtue while in such powerful positions. Regardless, the Policraticus makes it clear that education should be available to people of both tiers, even if virtue is seldom found.

The third tier of the government consists of, as he calls it, the feet of the body. This part of society has no state function, yet is the most populous. John proposed that the well-being of this third tier is of special concern to the prince because, in keeping with the analogy, society needs its feet to progress. The third tier has no political power, but should realize that this is for the best and should respect the rights of their superiors. There is little to no mention of education for this third tier, but John apologizes in the Policraticus for his description of them. He hopes that they somehow find virtue, but it is not a requirement for a state’s proper functioning.

His was not the first political theory, nor the last, to assert that a functioning society necessitates an uneducated working class. For example, Aristotle, who greatly influenced medieval thought, similarly argued in his Politics that a flourishing society involved a laboring class. The class of manual laborers served a vital role in that it freed up time for full Athenian citizens to engage in intellectual activities necessary to achieve human happiness.12 While Aristotle has often been criticized on this point, the rigid system may have seemed necessary to Aristotle, especially considering the time period it was written in. In Athens, the criteria to be a full Athenian citizen excluded many, like women and immigrants, so this stringent setup would not have seemed so harsh. It is troubling, however, to note that hundreds of years following this, a theorist came to similar conclusions about the exclusivity of education. Still, in the twelfth century, freedom was not all-inclusive, but unlike Aristotle’s educational theory, the Metalogicon consistently praises the potential of liberal arts education to bring about freedom to the individual.

This seems to entirely contradict John’s position on the telos of humankind. How can he have written such a significant piece on the importance of liberal arts education i.e., freedom for the individual, and then maintain that not everyone in society should pursue this end? This becomes an even more curious position for him to hold when one recalls John’s own humble beginnings. From the little information known of his early life, historians can assume with some certainty that his family would have belonged to this third tier of society. So, was it John’s own natural ability that allowed him to achieve understanding and rise to another tier? If this were true, it would only seem to confirm the Cornifician’s “natural gift” argument against the necessity of practicing the liberal arts. In the Metalogicon, John makes it clear he believes training is essential for the strengthening of these abilities, and it is rather odd that he would not extend this to his theoretical state body. Understanding the prince’s role in the state may lend itself to reconciling the peculiarity of this position.

In the Policraticus, the responsibility of the prince is immense. The prince is chosen and appointed by God, which can happen in a variety of ways, e.g., election, inheritance, or a decision of the priest. The prince is solely responsible for the well-ordering of society, ensuring its proper functioning. His responsibility is to seek wisdom through education, which will lead to the best functioning society. If he trains his officials, who perform the governmental functions, in this wisdom and understanding, then it will ideally result in more unified efforts toward virtue and happiness. Because the third tier will never hold political power, it was not necessary in this conception for them to either understand or practice reasoned judgment.

According to the body analogy, there is a strong interdependence among each member and the only way the body can function properly is if all individuals are playing their parts well. The feet of society owe it to their superiors to produce material goods just as they are given security and proper order. John explains,

Then and then only will the health of the commonwealth be sound and flourishing when the higher members shield the lower, and the lower respond faithfully and fully in like measure to the just demands of their superiors, so that each and all are as it were members one of another by a sort of reciprocity, and each regards his own interest as best served by that which he knows to be most advantageous for the others.13

The set up is similar in its rigid construction to Plato’s Republic. It is said that John’s view is Platonic in that societal relations are fixed, and the world has a design in which the body works perfectly if all accept their roles.14 In this way, contentment in life and politics relies on all individuals accepting and fulfilling the duties appropriate to their stations in life. He appeals to a classical conception of societal happiness, stating that a commonwealth could only be happy if it were governed by philosophers, or if its rulers, at least, became students and lovers of wisdom.

Taking into account the social and political climate of the twelfth century helps to make this rigid construction more understandable because John’s era was one of strictly drawn social distinctions. In fact, not everyone was allowed to seek education, and to John, perhaps it was more probable to create a fair, operating society through a few good rulers than to instill virtue into every citizen. While this opinion may have been advanced for the twelfth-century, given the impassioned way he advocated for the transformative nature of the liberal arts, his final conclusion—excluding a significant part of society—seems disjointed. Still, attempting to read this work in its sociohistorical context, the modern reader must take into account the extent to which concepts of freedom and basic human rights have changed and, in many ways, advanced.

Certainly John of Salisbury took the third tier of society into consideration when setting up his theoretical nation; however, an understanding of his educational theory and its potential, i.e., freedom for the individual, makes it difficult to accept the rest of his political theory. If one had a tool that could improve the lives of everyone—including those who find themselves on the bottom rungs of society—then to restrict this tool to those already at the top seems knowingly unjust.

It is certainly disappointing to have, on the one hand, such a piece dedicated to the importance of liberal arts education, and on the other, such clearly drawn social class distinctions. John of Salisbury argues passionately for liberal arts education and how it can provide freedom for the individual, but in this society, it also necessitated that the individual already be free. The incoherency of John’s position lies in the cyclic nature of this relationship.

A liberal arts education provides freedom for people to think and speak for themselves, but it still has its critics today. There are noticeable similarities between the Cornifician arguments and those critics who find liberal arts education impractical. In fact, many of John’s arguments against the Cornificians still have relevance today. Modern advocates of liberal arts education can appreciate the importance he placed on this subject, but before he is regarded as a champion of the liberal arts, his educational and political ideology serve as reminders of how history and philosophy should work together to untangle some of the confused thinking of past.

***

“Just as eloquence, unenlightened by reason, is rash and blind, so wisdom, without the power of expression, is feeble and maimed. Speechless wisdom may sometimes increase one’s personal satisfaction, but it rarely and only slightly contributes to the welfare of human society. Reason, the mother, nurse, and guardian of knowledge, as well as of virtue, frequently conceives from speech, and by this same means bears more abundant and richer fruit. Reason would remain utterly barren, or at least would fail to yield a plenteous harvest, if the faculty of speech did not bring to light its feeble conceptions, and communicate the perceptions of the prudent exercise of the human mind. Indeed, it is this delightful and fruitful copulation of reason and speech which has given birth to so many outstanding cities, has made friends and allies of so many kingdoms, and has unified and knit together in bonds of love so many peoples.”

— John of Salisbury (1120–1180), ‘The Metalogicon – A twelfth-century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium’ (1159)

 

 

Footnotes:

1 McGarry, Daniel D., The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium- Introduction, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1955), PDF e-book, xv.

2 A.F. Leach, The Schools of Medieval England, (New York: Macmillan, 1915), 96-155.

3 Daniel D. McGarry, The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium- Introduction, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1955), PDF e-book, xv.

4 David Knowles, The Evolution of Medieval Thought, (Baltimore: Helicon Press, Inc., 1962), 135.

5 John of Salisbury, The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium, trans. Daniel D. McGarry, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1955), PDF e-book, 12.

6 Ibid., 16.

7 John of Salisbury, The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium, trans. Daniel D. McGarry, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1955), PDF e-book, Book 4, Chapters 8-20.

8 Stephen C. Ferruolo, The Origins of the University: The Schools of Paris and Their Critics, 1100-1215, (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1985), 134.

9 John of Salisbury, The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium, trans. Daniel D. McGarry, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1955), PDF e-book, 11.

10 John of Salisbury, The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium, trans. Daniel D. McGarry, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1955), PDF e-book, 10.

11 John of Salisbury, Policraticus, trans. John Dickinson (New York: Russell & Russell, 1963), http://www.constitution.org/salisbury/policrat456.htm, Book 8, Chapter 8.

12 Aristotle, Politics, trans. Benjamin Jowett (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1905), Book 7, Chapter 9.

13 John of Salisbury, Policraticus, trans. John Dickinson (New York: Russell & Russell, 1963), http://www.constitution.org/salisbury/policrat456.htm, Book 6, Chapter 20. 14 Ibid., Book 4, Chapter 6.

 

References:

References
Aristotle. Politics. trans. Benjamin Jowett. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
1905.
Ferruolo, Stephen C. The Origins of the University: The Schools of Paris and
Their Critics, 1100-1215. Stanford: Stanford University Press. 1985.
Guilfoy, Kevin. “John of Salisbury”. In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Edward N. Zalta ed.
http://plato.stanford.edu/archives/fall2008/entries/john-salisbury/. 2008.
John of Salisbury. Policraticus. trans. John Dickinson. New York: Russell &
Russell. http://www.constitution.org/salisbury/policrat456.htm. 1963.
John of Salisbury. The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury: A twelfth century
defense of the verbal and logical arts of the trivium. trans. Daniel D.
McGarry. Berkeley: University of California Press. PDF e-book. 1955.
Knowles, David. The Evolution of Medieval Thought. Baltimore: Helicon Press,
Inc., 1962.
Leach, A.F., The Schools of Medieval England. New York: Macmillan. 1915.
McGarry, Daniel D. “Educational Theory in the Metalogicon of John of
Salisbury.” In Speculum 23, no. 4. 1948.

 

Resources/Related:

John Of Salisbury, (born 1115/20, Salisbury, Wiltshire, Eng.—died Oct. 25, 1180, probably at Chartres, France), one of the best Latinists of his age, who was secretary to Theobald and Thomas Becket, archbishops of Canterbury, and who became bishop of Chartres. After 1135 he attended cathedral schools in France for 12 years and studied under Peter Abelard (1136). He was a clerk in Theobald’s household in 1148 and during the next five years was mainly employed by the archbishop on missions to the Roman Curia. His Historia pontificalis (c. 1163) gives a vivid description of the papal court during this period, partly through its character sketches.

From 1153 John’s main duty was to draft the archbishopric’s official correspondence with the Curia, especially in connection with appeals. In the late summer of 1156 this activity angered King Henry II, who regarded him as a champion of ecclesiastical independence. The crisis passed, but to some extent it influenced John’s two books, the Policraticus and the Metalogicon (both 1159), in which his general intention was to show his contemporaries that in their thought and actions they were defecting from the true task of humanity. His work represented a protest against the professional specialization slowly developing in royal and papal administration and in the universities. He unfavourably contrasted the way of life followed by courtiers and administrators with an ideal practice derived from Latin poets and from classical and patristic writers.

Out of favour with Henry, John was exiled to France (1163) shortly before Becket was exiled. From his refuge in the monastery of Saint-Rémi at Reims, John wrote many letters assessing the prospects of the Canterbury case. After the reconciliation of Henry and Becket, he returned to England (1170) and was in Canterbury Cathedral when Becket was assassinated (Dec. 29, 1170). Thereafter, John was occupied with collecting Becket’s correspondence and preparing a biographical introduction. He became bishop of Chartres in 1176 and took an active part in the third Lateran Council (March 1179). He was buried at Chartres.

 

Bernard de Chartres, (born 11th century, Brittany, France—died c. 1130, possibly Paris), humanist and philosopher, head of the celebrated school of Chartres, in France, whose attempt to reconcile the thought of Plato with that of Aristotle made him the principal representative of 12th-century Platonism in the West. A teacher of logic and grammar at the cathedral school of Chartres (where his brother, Thierry de Chartres, also taught) from 1114, Bernard was elected chancellor of the school in 1119. He seems to have played some part in the movement that was to turn grammar into a field of philosophical speculation.

For Bernard as grammarian, the relation of the primitive word to its derivatives was of the same sort as the relation of the Platonic Idea to its immersion in the material world. Thus, a white object, for example, immediately suggested to Bernard the source of its reality in the eternal Idea of whiteness. Apparently called to teach philosophy at Paris in 1124, he had as a student John of Salisbury, later secretary to Thomas Becket, archbishop of Canterbury, and bishop of Chartres. John’s treatises are the chief sources for data on Bernard’s life and thought. According to the Metalogicon (1159) of John of Salisbury, Bernard wrote three works: a treatise, De expositione Porphyrii (“On the Interpretation of Porphyry,” the 4th-century Neoplatonist logician); a verse form of the same tract; and a comparative study of Plato and Aristotle. Although only three fragments of Bernard’s verse are extant, his philosophical doctrine can be determined from a résumé given in John’s Metalogicon.

Reflecting the early Platonism of the anonymous 5th-century philosopher known as Pseudo-Dionysius and his 9th-century interpreter John Scotus Erigena, Bernard proposed the basic Platonic dichotomy between the real world of eternal Ideas and the apparent world of material objects. According to Bernard, reality is composed of three invisible, immutable principles: God, Ideas, and matter. The Ideas are not coeternal with God but possess only a derived eternity. The manner of the Ideas’ existence in the world of matter is that of a forma nativa (“begotten form”), or a projected copy of the eternal exemplar immanent in God. Immersed in matter, the “begotten form,” Bernard held, constitutes sensible objects able to move. Matter of itself is immobile. The texts of Bernard preserved in John of Salisbury’s Metalogicon are contained in the series Patrologia Latina, edited by J.-P. Migne, vol. 199 (1890).

 

Scholarly articles for metalogicon medieval development of pedagogy

The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury

The Metalogicon

Metalogicon, 1159 – Oxford Scholarship

The Cornifician motif in John of Salisbury’s Metalogicon

182. John of Salisbury and the Trivium

Mirrors for princes

Catalog Record

Metalogicon | work by John of Salisbury

The Arts of Language in the Middle Ages: The Trivium – UChicago

The Liberal Arts Tradition: A Documentary History

20th WCP: The Liberal Arts and the End of Education

Contested Knowledges: John of Salisbury’s Metalogicon and Historia .

The Metalogicon: A Twelfth-Century Defense of the ..

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Brepols Publishers

The Oxford Handbook of Medieval Latin Literature

Medieval theories of education: Hugh of St Victor and … – ResearchGate

Early Medieval Philosophy (c. 650-1200)

The Liberal Arts Tradition: A Documentary History

Cultural & intellectual history

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Medieval Grammar and Rhetoric: Language Arts and Literary Theory, AD 300 -1475

Medicine and Doctoring in Ancient Mesopotamia – ScholarWorks

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Lucid Dreaming: Learn How to Control Your Dreams

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The science of lucid dreaming—in which the sleeper is aware they are dreaming—and how it could affect waking life.

1.1   WHAT IS LUCID DREAMING?

Lucid dreaming means dreaming while knowing that you are dreaming. The term was coined by Frederik van Eeden who used the word “lucid” in the sense of mental clarity. Lucidity usually begins in the midst of a dream when the dreamer realizes that the experience is not occurring in physical reality, but is a dream. Often this realization is triggered by the dreamer noticing some impossible or unlikely occurrence in the dream, such as flying or meeting the deceased. Sometimes people become lucid without noticing any particular clue in the dream; they just suddenly realize they are in a dream. A minority of lucid dreams (according to the research of LaBerge and colleagues, about 10 percent) are the result of returning to Rapid eye movement (REM) dreaming sleep directly from an awakening with unbroken reflective consciousness.

The basic definition of lucid dreaming requires nothing more than becoming aware that you are dreaming. However, the quality of lucidity can vary greatly. When lucidity is at a high level, you are aware that everything experienced in the dream is occurring in your mind, that there is no real danger, and that you are asleep in bed and will awaken shortly. With low-level lucidity you may be aware to a certain extent that you are dreaming, perhaps enough to fly or alter what you are doing, but not enough to realize that the people are dream representations, or that you can suffer no physical damage, or that you are actually in bed.


1.2   IS LUCID DREAMING THE SAME AS DREAM CONTROL?

Lucidity is not synonymous with dream control. It is possible to be lucid and have little control over dream content, and conversely, to have a great deal of control without being explicitly aware that you are dreaming. However, becoming lucid in a dream is likely to increase the extent to which you can deliberately influence the course of events. Once lucid, dreamers usually choose to do something permitted only by the extraordinary freedom of the dream state, such as flying.

You always have the choice of how much control you want to exert. For example, you could continue with whatever you were doing when you became lucid, with the added knowledge that you are dreaming. Or you could try to change everything—the dream scene, yourself, other dream characters. It is not always possible to perform “magic” in dreams, like changing one object into another or transforming scenes. A dreamer’s ability to succeed at this seems to depend a lot on the dreamer’s confidence. As Henry Ford said, “Believe you can, believe you can’t; either way, you’re right.” On the other hand, it appears there are some constraints on dream control that may be independent of belief. See “Testing the Limits of Dream Control: The Light and Mirror Experiment” for more on this.

1.3   HOW ARE LUCID DREAMS RELATED TO OUT-OF-BODY EXPERIENCES (OBEs)?

A mysterious and highly controversial phenomenon sometimes occurs in which people experience the compelling sensation that they have somehow “left their bodies.” The “out-of-body experience” or “OBE“, as this fascinating phenomenon is usually termed, takes a variety of forms. In the most typical, you are lying in bed, apparently awake, when suddenly you experience a range of primarily somatic sensations, often including vibrations, heaviness, and paralysis. Then you experience the vivid sensation of separating from your “physical body” in what feels like a second body, often floating above the bed.

It is important to note the distinction between the phenomenal reality of the OBE and the various interpretations of the experience. What is really happening when you feel yourself “leaving your body”? According to one school of thought, what is actually happening is just what it feels like: you are moving in a second body out of and away from your physical body—in physical space. But this “explanation” doesn’t hold up very well under examination. After all, the body we ordinarily feel ourselves to be (or if you like, to inhabit) is a phenomenal or mental body rather than a physical body. The space we see around us is not physical space as “common sense” tells us, but as modern psychology makes clear, a phenomenal or mental space. In general, our consciousness is a mental model of the world.

OBE enthusiasts promote lucid dreaming as a “stepping stone” to the OBE. Conversely, many lucid dreamers have had the experience of feeling themselves “leave the body” at the onset of a lucid dream. From a laboratory study, we have concluded that OBEs can occur in the same physiological state as lucid dreams. Wake-initiated lucid dreams (WILDs) were three times more likely to be labeled “OBEs” than dream initiated lucid dreams. If you believe yourself to have been awake, then you are more likely to take the experience at face value and believe yourself to have literally left your physical body in some sort of mental or “astral” body floating around in the “real” physical world. If, on the other hand, you think of the experience as a dream, then you are likely to identify the OBE body as a dream body image and the environment of the experience as a dream world. The validity of the latter interpretation is supported by observations and research on these phenomena.


2.1   WHY HAVE LUCID DREAMS?

Upon hearing about lucid dreaming for the first time, people often ask, “Why should I want to have lucid dreams? What are they good for?” If you consider that once you know you are dreaming, you are restricted only by your ability to imagine and conceive, not by laws of physics or society, then the answer to what lucid dreaming is good for is either extremely simple (anything!) or extraordinarily complex (everything!). It is easier to provide a sample of what some people have done with lucid dreaming than to give a definitive answer of its potential uses.

2.1.1   Adventure and Fantasy

Often, the first thing that attracts people to lucid dreaming is the potential for wild adventure and fantasy fulfillment. Flying is a favorite lucid dream delight, as is sex. Many people have said that their first lucid dream was the most wonderful experience of their lives. A large part of the extraordinary pleasure of lucid dreaming comes from the exhilarating feeling of utter freedom that accompanies the realization that you are in a dream and there will be no social or physical consequences of your actions. One might think that this is a rather intellectual concept, but an ecstatic “rush” frequently arises with the first realization that one is dreaming.

2.1.2   Overcoming Nightmares

Unfortunately for many people, instead of providing an outlet for unlimited fantasy and delight, dreams can be dreaded episodes of limitless terror. As is discussed in the books Lucid Dreaming (LaBerge, 1985),

Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming (EWLD) (LaBerge and Rheingold, 1990) and

Lucid Dreaming: A Concise Guide to Awakening in Your Dreams and in Your Life (LaBerge, 2004), lucid dreaming may well be the basis of the most effective therapy for nightmares. If you know you are dreaming, it is a simple logical step to realizing that nothing in your current experience, however unpleasant, can cause you physical harm. There is no need to run from or fight with dream monsters. In fact, it is often pointless to try, because the horror pursuing you was conceived in your own mind, and as long as you continue to fear it, it can pursue you wherever you dream yourself to be. The only way to really “escape” is to end your fear. (For a discussion of reasons for recurrent nightmares, see “Overcoming Nightmares” from EWLD.) The fear you feel in a nightmare is completely real; it is the danger that is not.

Unreasonable fear can be defused by facing up to the source, or going through with the frightening activity, so that you observe that no harm comes to you. In a nightmare, this act of courage can take any form that involves facing the “threat” rather than avoiding it. For example, one young man dreamt of being pursued by a lion. When he had no place left to run, he realized he was dreaming and called to the lion to “come and get him.” The challenge turned into a playful wrestling match, and the lion became a sexy woman (NightLight 1.4, 1989, p. 13). Monsters often transform into benign creatures, friends, or empty shells when courageously confronted in lucid dreams. This is an extremely empowering experience. It teaches you in a very visceral manner that you can conquer fear and thereby become stronger.

2.1.3   Rehearsal

Lucid dreaming is an extraordinarily vivid form of mental imagery, so realistic that the trick is to realize it is a mental construct. It is no surprise, therefore, that many people use lucid dreaming to rehearse for success in waking life. Examples of such applications include public speaking, difficult confrontations, artistic performance and athletic prowess. Because the activity of the brain during a dreamed activity is the same as during the real event, neuronal patterns of activation required for a skill (like a ski jump or pirouette) can be established in the dream state in preparation for performance in the waking world. See EWLD for examples.

2.1.4   Creativity and Problem Solving

The creative potential of dreams is legendary. The brain is highly active in REM sleep and unconstrained by sensory input, which together may contribute to the novel combinations of events and objects we experience as dream bizarreness. This same novelty allows thought to take on forms that are rare in waking life, manifesting as enhanced creativity, or defective thinking depending on one’s point of view (as Roland Fisher put it, “One man’s creativity is another’s brain damage.”).

The claim of enhanced creativity of the dream state is supported by LI research: One study found word associations immediately after awakening from a dream to be 29% more likely to be uncommon compared to word associations later in the day (NightLight, 6.4, 1994). Another study comparing a variety of kinds of experience including daydreams, memories of actual events, and dreams, found that dreams were judged as being significantly more creative than both daydreams and memories (NightLight, 4.1, 1992). In any case, many lucid dreamers report using dreams for problem solving and artistic inspiration; see EWLD for a variety of examples.

2.1.5   Healing

The effects of visual imagery on the body are well-established. Just as skill practice in a dream can enhance waking performance, healing dream imagery may improve physical health. Medical patients have often used soothing and positive imagery to alleviate pain, and the dream world offers the most vivid form of imagery. Thus, some people have use lucid dreams in overcoming phobias, working with grief, decreasing social and sexual anxieties, achieving greater self-confidence and by directing the body image in the dream to facilitate physical healing. The applications, which are described in greater detail in EWLD, deserve clinical study as they may be the greatest boon that lucid dreaming has to offer. Other potential healing applications of lucid dreaming include: practice of physical skills by stroke and spinal cord injury patients to encourage recovery of neuromuscular function, enjoyment of sexual satisfaction by people with lower body sensory loss (fully satisfying dream sex requires only mental stimulation!), more rapid recovery from injury or disease through the use of lucid dream imagery, and an increased sense of freedom for anyone who feels limited by disability or circumstance.

2.1.6   Transcendence

The experience of being in a lucid dream clearly demonstrates the astonishing fact that the world we see is a construct of our minds. This concept, so elusive when sought in waking life, is the cornerstone of spiritual teachings. It forces us to look beyond everyday experience and ask, “If this is not real, what is?” Lucid dreaming, by so baldly baring a truth that many spend lives seeking, often triggers spiritual questioning in people who try it for far more mundane purposes. Not only does lucid dreaming lead to questioning the nature of reality, but for many it also has been a source of transcendent experience. Exalted and ecstatic states are common in lucid dreams. EWLD presents several cases of individuals achieving states of union with the Highest, great peace and a new sense of their roles in life.


2.2   CAN LUCID DREAMING BE DANGEROUS?

The overwhelming majority of lucid dreams are positive, rewarding experiences. Moreover, lucidity in unpleasant dreams or nightmares can transform habitual fear into conscious courage. The simple state of lucidity is frequently enough to elevate the mood of a dreamer in a nightmare. In a study of the effect of lucid dreams on mood, college students reported that realizing they were dreaming in a nightmare helped them feel better about 60 percent of the time. Lucidity was seven times more likely to make nightmares better than worse. Probably the only people who should not experiment with lucid dreaming are those who are unable to distinguish between waking reality and constructions of their imagination.

A parallel concern is that dying in a dream can cause death in reality. If this were true, how would we know? Anyone who died from a dream could not tell us about its content. Many people, after awakening alive, report having died in their dreams with no ill effect. Dreams of death can actually be insightful experiences about life, rebirth, and transcendence.

Some people believe that dreams are messages from the unconscious mind and should not be consciously altered. Modern research on dreaming, discussed further in chapter 5 of EWLD, suggests that dreams are not messages, but models of the world. While awake, sensory and perceptual information governs our model. While dreaming, our bodies are paralyzed and our brain builds a world model based on a secondary source; namely, our assumptions, motivations, and expectations. These biases are difficult to identify while awake, so a world based entirely on such biases, the world of dreams, can help us to recognize them. Thus, dreams are not messages, but are more like clues into the inner workings of our minds. The conscious and critical awareness that accompanies lucid dreams allows dreamers to thoughtfully interpret their dreams while they happen.

Finally, some people worry that lucid dreams are so exciting and pleasurable that they will become addicted and “sleep their life away.” There is a biological obstacle to living in lucid dreams: we have a limited amount of REM sleep. More importantly, lucid dreams can be inspirations for how to act and improve in reality. Your behavior strongly influences your experience in both worlds. Lucid dreams can be signposts for how you can make your waking reality more exciting and enjoyable.


3.1   CAN EVERYONE LEARN TO HAVE LUCID DREAMS?

Lucid dreaming is a skill you can develop, like learning a new language. A few individuals may have an innate talent for achieving lucidity, yet even they can benefit from instruction and practice in making the most of their lucid dreams. Many more people experience lucidity as a rare spontaneous event, but need training to enjoy lucid dreams at will. The best predictor of success with lucid dreaming is the ability to remember dreams. This, too, is a skill you can develop. With specific techniques, you can increase the quantity and quality of your dream recall, which will in turn greatly increase your ability to have lucid dreams.


3.2   HOW DO I LEARN TO HAVE LUCID DREAMS?

Tibetan Dream Yogis Are The Supreme Masters of Lucid Dreaming

The two essentials to learning lucid dreaming are motivation and effort. Although most people report occasional spontaneous lucid dreams, they rarely occur without our intending it. Lucid dream induction techniques help focus intention and prepare a critical mind. They range from millennium-old Tibetan exercises to modern methods developed by dream researchers.

Dream Yoga: Lucid Dreaming in Tibetan Buddhism

Tibetan Dream Yoga and the ancient philosophy of Tibetan Buddhism. Explore new depths to lucid dreaming and get a taste of some dream yoga techniques.

Tibetan Dream Yoga is the original form of lucid dreaming documented for at least 1,000 years.

Also known as Milam – the yoga of the dream state – it’s a suite of advanced tantric techniques.

Just like our Westernized understanding of lucid dreams, the initial aim is to awaken the consciousness in the dream state.

However, as for what happens next, Tibetan lamas have more esoteric goals in mind…

The Basis of Dream Yoga

Dream yoga is taught within the trance Bardos of Dream and Sleep. In the tradiditon of tantra, it’s usually passed on by a qualified teacher, once the student has passed an initiation.

It’s considered a passing on of enlightened experience rather than reading texts, and requires the student to develop sufficient self awareness to achieve conscious lucidity during sleep.

Their aim is to harness the power of the lucid dream state by “apprehending the dream”. Students are then required to complete set tasks to take them to the next level. These tasks include:

  • Practice sadhana (a spiritual discipline)
  • Receive initiations, empowerments and transmissions
  • Visit different places, planes and lokas (worlds)
  • Communicate with yidam (an enlightened being)
  • Meet with other sentient beings
  • Fly and shape shift into other creatures

The ultimate goal in Tibetan dream yoga is to apprehend the dream – and then dissolve the dream state.

When deprived of physical and conceptual stimulus from the dreaming mind, you can observe the purest form of conscious awareness.

Dream Yoga Techniques

The philosophy of Tibetan Buddhism is complex, but you don’t need to be an expert to practice dream yoga techniques. However, you do need to show commitment; a technique is only as good as you are prepared to work at it.

One very broad but basic rule is this: continually compare your dreams to waking reality and know what it feels like to be conscious. This will increase your self awareness and you will find it easier to induce lucidity in dreams.

Here’s an example of a dream yoga technique. If you already practice lucid dreaming, you’ll find it familiar because dream recall is the key to lucid dreaming which ever way you look at it.

Dream Recollection

Every time you wake up, reflect on all the dreams you can remember. In Tibetan Buddhism, it’s believed that the ego travels about during sleep – revisiting places we have been to in real life, and repeating all our experiences.

So it’s important to meditate upon your latest dreams and recollections. Stay completely still while you do this, because the “dream body” is disturbed by physical movement and the memories are lost.

As you meditate on your dreams, repeat the mantra: RAOM GAOM, accentuating the O and splitting each word into two syllables. This will help focus your awareness on memories from the unconscious.

To learn more about dream yoga, I recommend The Tibetan Yogas of Dream and Sleep by Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche. Unlike many other books on the subject, Tenzin is clear and concise and offers lots of practical examples.

This book is aimed at beginners to dream yoga, starting with the nature of dreams and their relationship with reality. He also emphasizes how you can incorporate dream yoga into your daily life and reap the rewards of this profound lucid dreaming practice.

Among the author’s accolades are his lifelong passion as a lucid dreaming practitioner and being a spiritual teacher of both the Tibetan Buddhist and Bon Tibetan religious groups. Enjoy the reading and happy dreaming!

* Also try some the following techniques and feel free to use personal variants. Experiment, observe, and persevere—lucid dreaming is easier than you may think.

3.2.1   Dream Recall

The most important prerequisite for learning lucid dreaming is excellent dream recall. There are two likely reasons for this. First, when you remember your dreams well, you can become familiar with their features and patterns. This helps you to recognize them as dreams while they are still happening. Second, it is possible that with poor dream recall, you may actually have lucid dreams that you do not remember!

The procedure for improving your dream recall is fully detailed in EWLD and A Course in Lucid Dreaming in addition to many other books on dreams. A brief discussion of the methods involved is available on the Lucidity Institute website. The core exercise requires writing down everything you recall about your dreams in a dream journal, no matter how fragmentary your recall. Upon awakening, remain absolutely still while you recall the essential elements of the dream, paying particular attention to the dreamsigns (see 3.2.3 below). Then record the dream immediately in your journal. If you wait until morning you are likely to forget most, if not all, of the dream. In A Course in Lucid Dreaming we advise that people build their dream recall to at least one dream recalled per night before proceeding with lucid dream induction techniques.

3.2.2   Reality Testing

This is a good technique for beginners. Assign yourself several times a day to perform the following exercise. Also do it anytime you think of it, especially when something odd occurs or when you are reminded of dreams. It helps to choose specific occasions like: when you see your face in the mirror, look at your watch, arrive at work or home, pick up your NovaDreamer, etc. The more frequently and thoroughly you practice this technique, the better it will work.

  1. Do a reality test.
    Carry some text with you or wear a digital watch throughout the day. To do a reality test, read the words or the numbers on the watch. Then, look away and look back, observing the letters or numbers to see if they change. Try to make them change while watching them. Research shows that text in dreams changes 75% of the time it is re-read once and changes 95% it is re-read twice. If the characters do change, or are not normal, or do not make sense, then you are most probably dreaming. Enjoy! If the characters are normal, stable, and sensible, then you probably aren’t dreaming. Go on to step 2.

– REM (dreaming stage of sleep) your mind is MORE active than during the active awakened daytime. On the right is REM. The implication is, in part, that the mind is freed, more available and more focused than during busy daytime activity when habitual activities dominate

  1. Imagine that your surroundings are a dream.
    If you are fairly certain you are awake (you can never be 100% sure!), then say to yourself, “I may not be dreaming now, but if I were, what would it be like?” Visualize as vividly as possible that you are dreaming. Intently imagine that what you are seeing, hearing, smelling, feeling is all a dream. Imagine instabilities in your environment, words changing, scenes transforming, perhaps you are floating off the ground. Create in yourself the feeling that you are in a dream. Holding that feeling, go on to step 3.
  2. Visualize yourself enjoying a dream activity.
    Decide on something you would like to do in your next lucid dream, perhaps flying, talking to particular dream characters, or just exploring the dream world. Continue to imagine that you are dreaming now, and visualize yourself enjoying your chosen activity.

3.2.3   Dreamsigns

Another dream-recall related exercise introduced in EWLD and further developed in A Course in Lucid Dreaming is identifying “dreamsigns.” This term, coined by LaBerge, refers to elements of dreams that indicate that you are dreaming. (Examples: miraculous flight, purple cats, malfunctioning devices, and meeting deceased people.) By studying your dreams you can become familiar with your own personal dreamsigns and set your mind to recognize them and become lucid in future dreams. The Course also provides exercises for noticing dreamsigns while you are awake, so that the skill carries over into your dreams. This exercise also applies to lucid dream induction devices, which give sensory cues—special, artificially-produced dreamsigns—while you are dreaming. To succeed at recognizing these cues in dreams, you need to practice looking for them and recognizing them while you are awake.

3.2.4   Mnemonic Induction of Lucid Dreams (MILD)

The MILD technique employs prospective memory, remembering to do something (notice you’re dreaming) in the future. Dr. LaBerge developed this technique for his doctoral dissertation and used it to achieve lucid dreaming at will. The proper time to practice MILD is after awakening from a dream, before returning to sleep. (Modified from EWLD, p. 78)

  1. Setup dream recall.
    Set your mind to awaken from dreams and recall them. When you awaken from a dream, recall it as completely as you can.
  2. Focus your intent.
    While returning to sleep, concentrate single-mindedly on your intention to remember to recognize that you’re dreaming. Tell yourself: “Next time I’m dreaming, I will remember I’m dreaming,” repeatedly, like a mantra. Put real meaning into the words and focus on this idea alone. If you find yourself thinking about anything else, let it go and bring your mind back to your intention.
  3. See yourself becoming lucid.
    As you continue to focus on your intention to remember when you’re dreaming, imagine that you are back in the dream from which you just awakened (or another one you have had recently if you didn’t remember a dream on awakening). Imagine that this time you recognize that you are dreaming. Look for a dreamsign—something in the dream that demonstrates plainly that it is a dream. When you see it say to yourself: “I’m dreaming!” and continue your fantasy. Imagine yourself carrying out your plans for your next lucid dream. For example, if you want to fly in your lucid dream, imagine yourself flying after you come to the point in your fantasy when you become lucid.
  4. Repeat until your intention is set.
    Repeat steps 2 and 3 until either you fall asleep or are sure that your intention is set. If, while falling asleep, you find yourself thinking of anything else, repeat the procedure so that the last thing in your mind before falling asleep is your intention to remember to recognize the next time you are dreaming.

3.2.5   Napping

Two observations led LaBerge in the late 1970s to develop morning napping as a method of lucid dream induction. First, he noticed that lucidity seemed to come easier in afternoon naps. The second suggestion same from several lucid dreamers who noted that certain activities during the night appeared to induce lucid dreaming. The diverse qualities of these interruptions: sex, vomiting, and pure meditation, piqued LaBerge’s curiosity regarding what feature each might possess conducive to lucidity. The answer proved to be quite simple: wakefulness interjected during sleep increases the likelihood of lucidity. In fact, the nap technique, refined through several NightLight (see 1001 Nights Exploring Lucid Dreaming) experiments, is an extremely powerful method of stimulating lucid dreams. The technique requires you to awaken one hour earlier than usual, stay awake for 30 to 60 minutes, then go back to sleep. One study showed a 15 to 20 times increased likelihood of lucid dreaming for those practicing the nap technique over no technique. During the wakeful period, read about lucid dreaming, practice reality checks and then do MILD as you are falling asleep. Lucidity Institute’s training programs include this technique as an essential part of the schedule, one of the reasons why most participants have lucid dreams during the session.


3.3   HOW QUICKLY CAN I LEARN LUCID DREAMING?

The speed with which you develop the skill of lucid dreaming depends on many individual factors. How well do you recall dreams? How much time can you give to practicing mental exercises? Do you use a lucid dream induction device? Do you practice diligently? Do you have a well developed critical thinking faculty? And so on.

Case histories may provide a more tangible picture of the process of learning lucid dreaming. Dr. LaBerge increased his frequency of lucid dreaming from about one per month to up to four a night (at which point he could have lucid dreams at will) over the course of three years. He was studying lucid dreaming for his doctoral dissertation and therefore needed to learn to have them on demand as quickly as possible. On the other hand, he had to invent techniques for improving lucid dreaming skills. Thus, people starting now, although they may not be as strongly motivated as LaBerge or have the same quantity of time to devote to it, have the advantage of the tested techniques, training programs, and electronic biofeedback aids that have been created in the decades since LaBerge began his studies.


3.4   WHAT TECHNOLOGY IS AVAILABLE TO ASSIST LUCID DREAMING TRAINING?

Here’s a list of the Top 5 Sleep Masks for Lucid Dreaming and Meditation:

1.  Dream Essentials Escape Luxury Sleep Mask.

2. Mindfold Sleep and Relaxation Eye Mask

3. Dream Essentials Sweet Dreams Contoured Sleep Mask

4. Glo to Sleep Eye Mask

5. DreamTime Inner Peace Eye Pillow

Lucidity Institute also offers electronic devices that help people have lucid dreams. They were developed through laboratory research at Stanford University by LaBerge, Levitan, and others. The basic principle behind these devices is as follows: the primary task confronting someone who wishes to have a lucid dream is to remember that intention while in a dream. One of the best ways to increase a person’s chances of having a lucid dream is to give a reminder to the person during REM sleep. In the lab, we found that flashing light cues worked well in that they tended to incorporate into ongoing dreams without causing awakening. You may have noticed that occasional bits of sensory information are filtered into your dreams in disguised form, like a clock radio as supermarket music or a chain saw as the sound of a thunderstorm. This is the same principle used by our lucid dream induction devices: the lights or sounds from the device filter into the user’s dreams. In cases of very deep sleepers, we found that it was sometimes necessary to use sound as well as light to get the cues into dreams. The dreamer’s task is to notice the flashing lights in the dream and remember that they are cues to become lucid. Because we could not possibly accommodate everyone who wants to come into the sleep lab for a lucid dream induction session and most people would rather sleep at home anyway, we worked for several years to develop a comfortable, portable device that would detect REM sleep and deliver a cue tailored to the individual user’s needs.

3.4.1   The NovaDreamer

The NovaDreamer lucid dream induction device works by giving flashing light or sound cues when the user is dreaming. Users modify the device settings to find a cue with the right intensity and length to enter their dreams without causing awakening. In addition, device users practice mental exercises while awake to enhance their ability to recognize the light cues when they appear in dreams. The NovaDreamer includes a soft, comfortable sleep mask, which contains the flashing lights, a speaker, and an eye movement detection apparatus. The NovaDreamer’s electronics are all inside the sleep mask. The NovaDreamer uses REM detection to time the delivery of lucidity cue and provides feedback on the number of cues given. It includes the “Dream Alarm” feature to boost dream recall. Users have a choice of a wide selection of cues and receive feedback on the number of cues they receive during a sleep period.

The lucidity cues of the NovaDreamer are intended to enter into ongoing dreams. This can occur in several ways. Cues can be superimposed over the dream scene, like a light flashing in one’s face, or they can briefly interrupt the dream scene. The most common (and most difficult to identify) incorporation of cues is into dream stories. Little brother flashing the room lights, flash bulbs, lightning, traffic signals, police car lights: all are real examples of incorporations of NovaDreamer cues. The trickiness of cue appearances underscores the need to thoroughly prepare one’s mind to recognize cues via waking practice.

The NovaDreamer offers a second method of lucid dream stimulation. This method arose out of the discovery that while sleeping with the NovaDreamer, people frequently dreamed that they awakened wearing the device, and pressed the button on the front of the mask to start the “delay,” a feature that disables cues while you are drifting off to sleep. Ordinarily, a button press would cause a beep to tell you that you had successfully pressed it. Dream versions of devices are notorious for not working normally. Once people were advised that failure of the button in the middle of the night was a sign that they were probably dreaming, they were able to use this “dreamsign” reliably to become lucid during “false awakenings” with the NovaDreamer. Research suggests that about half of the lucid dreams stimulated by the devices result from using the button for reality tests. (Some of these are available from Lucidity Institute. For details, see the NovaDreamer manual (in html format), or in Acrobat PDF format.)


3.5   HOW WELL DO LUCID DREAM INDUCTION DEVICES WORK?

Lucid Dreaming Induction Devices are designed to help people achieve lucidity by giving them cues while they are dreaming and also by providing a reliable means of testing one’s state of consciousness. They do not make people have lucid dreams any more than exercise machines make people develop strong muscles. In both cases the goal, strength or lucid dreams, results from practice. The machines accelerate the process. Several factors enter into success with one of these devices. One is how accurately the cues are coordinated with the user’s REM sleep. The devices’ REM detection systems are adjustable to individual variables. Another success factor is how well the cues enter into the dream without awakening the sleeper. A third factor is how prepared the user is for recognizing cues in dreams and becoming lucid. Finally, the user’s commitment to performing a reality test on each awakening with the device influences success. All four of these factors are, to some extent, controllable by the device user: adjustment of eye movement sensitivity to catch REM sleep, selecting a cue that enters dreams without causing awakenings, mental preparation to recognize cues in dreams, and resolution to do reality tests. Therefore, it is difficult to obtain a truly accurate measurement of the effectiveness of the devices. Nonetheless, research with various versions of the DreamLight have shown that it definitely helps people have more frequent lucid dreams.

An earlier study with a different version of the DreamLight showed a five-fold increase in lucid dreaming frequency when people used the Mnemonic Induction of Lucid Dreaming (MILD) mental technique in conjunction with the device, compared with using no device and no mental technique. Using the device without mental techniques worked about as well as just using the mental technique; both cases were an improvement over using nothing.

In summary, at this stage the lucid dream induction devices can definitely help people to have lucid dreams, or to have more of them. Important factors contributing to success are good dream recall (the DreamLight and NovaDreamer also can be used to boost dream recall with the “Dream Alarm feature”), diligent mental preparation, and careful adjustment of the device to meet individual needs for cueing and REM detection. No device yet exists that will make a person have a lucid dream.


3.6   ARE THERE ANY DRUGS OR NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS THAT STIMULATE LUCID DREAMS?

Image result for DRUGS THAT STIMULATE LUCIDA number of substances and drugs have been suggested to enhance the likelihood of lucid dreaming, from vitamins to prescription drugs. There are few good scientific studies to test such claims. Lucid dreaming is highly subject to the placebo effect; the belief that something will stimulate a lucid dream is very effective! This is not to say that there are not substances that do, in fact, promote lucid dreaming. We are interested in discovering such and welcome observations from fellow dreamers. At this time, however, we do not endorse any substances for inducing lucid dreams. Many prescription drugs as well as marijuana and alcohol alter the sleep cycle, usually by suppressing REM sleep. This leads to a phenomenon called “REM rebound,” in which a person experiences intense, long REM periods after the drug has worn off. This can manifest as nightmares or, possibly, as lucid dreaming, since the brain is highly active. Drugs in the LSD family, including psilocybin and tryptamines actually stimulate REM sleep (in doses small enough to allow sleep), leading to longer REM periods. We do not recommend the use of drugs without proper guidance nor do we urge the breaking of laws.


3.7   HOW CAN I PREVENT WAKING UP AS SOON AS I BECOME LUCID?

Beginning lucid dreamers often have the problem of waking up right after becoming lucid. This obstacle may prevent some people from realizing the value of lucid dreaming. Fortunately there are ways to overcome this problem.

The first is to remain calm in the dream. Becoming lucid is exciting, but expressing the excitement can awaken you. It is possible to enjoy the thrill that accompanies the dawning of lucidity without allowing the activation to overwhelm you. Be like a poker player with an ideal hand. Relax and engage with the dream rather than withdrawing into your inner joy of accomplishment.

Then, if the dream shows signs of ending, such as a loss of detail, vividness, and apparent reality of the imagery, the technique of “spinning” can often restore the dream. You spin your dream body around like a child trying to get dizzy. LaBerge developed this technique after experimenting with the idea that relaxing completely might help prevent awakening from a dream. When in a lucid dream that was fading, he stopped and dropped backwards to the floor, and had a false awakening in bed! After a few trials he determined that the essential element was the sensation of motion, not relaxation. The best way to create a feeling of movement, especially in the dream scene has vanished, leaving nowhere to move to, is to create angular momentum (or the sensation of it), by spinning around your axis. You are not really doing it, but your brain is well familiar with the experience of spinning and duplicates the experience quite well. In the process, the vestibular and kinesthetic senses are engaged. Presumably, this sensory engagement with the dream discourages the brain from changing state from dreaming to waking. Note that dream spinning does not usually lead to dizziness. Be aware that the expectation of possible awakening sometimes leads to a “false awakening” in which you dream of waking. The vividness of the spinning sensation may cause you to feel your spinning arm hit the bed. You think, “Oops, I’m awake in bed now.” Think now—your physical body wasn’t really spinning, it was your dream body—therefore, the arm is a  dream arm hitting a dream bed! To avoid being deceived, recite, “The next scene will be a dream,” until a scene appears. If you are in doubt about your status, perform a thorough reality test. If awakened, lie still and imagine the sensation of spinning while reminding yourself that the next scene may be a dream. This tactic can result in a return to dreaming with lucidity.

Research at Lucidity Institute has proven the effectiveness of spinning: the odds in favor of continuing the lucid dream were about 22 to 1 after spinning, 13 to 1 after hand rubbing (another technique designed to prevent awakening), and 1 to 2 after “going with the flow” (a “control” task). That makes the relative odds favoring spinning over going with the flow 48 to 1, and for rubbing over going with the flow, 27 to 1.

 


4.1   WHAT ARE THE BEST RESOURCES FOR LEARNING MORE ABOUT LUCID DREAMING?

Over the past thirty-five years, exercises, techniques and training materials have been developed and refined to the point where most anyone can learn to have lucid dreams if they are willing to devote time and effort. Lucidity Institute offers lucid dreaming training through several modalities. To start, most bookstores carry the book Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming (EWLD) by LaBerge and Rheingold (Ballantine, 1990), or you can order it online from Amazon.com. It presents a step-by-step training program with exercises and an introduction to the various possible applications of lucid dreaming. Lucidity Institute’s A Course in Lucid Dreaming (included with the NovaDreamer package) provides a more thorough training program with five units of exercises and a workbook for tracking your progress. EWLD is the textbook for the Course.

There are several other good resources, although caution is in order when buying books on lucid dreaming. Some are poorly researched and present claims or methods that have not been rigorously tested. Below is a list of books and audio tapes that we have found valuable for introducing the facts about lucid dreaming, conveying something of the experience, or assisting with training. Some excerpts from the books are available on the Lucidity Institute website.

LUCID DREAMING
By Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D., (Ballantine, 1986; ISBN 0-345-33355-1)
This is the seminal work that first brought lucid dreaming to the attention of the general public and legitimized it as a valuable field of scientific inquiry. It is still the best general reference on lucid dreaming and a pleasure to read. The phenomenon of lucid dreaming is explored from many angles, beginning with the history of the practice in human cultures. LaBerge describes the early days of the scientific research and tells the story of his successful challenge of the established school of thought in sleep research, which held that awareness while dreaming was impossible. He discusses many methods of lucid dream induction, including the way he taught himself to have several lucid dreams per night. Other topics covered include: contemporary theories of the function of dreaming “Dreaming, Function, and Meaning”, applications of lucid dreaming, the relationship of lucid dreaming to out-of-body and near-death experiences, and the possibility of using lucid dreaming as a gateway or stepping stone on the path to spiritual enlightenment. See Annotated Table of Contents for more details. Out of print; check Addall.com, Half.com, Amazon.com, and other online bookstores for a used copy.

EXPLORING THE WORLD OF LUCID DREAMING
By Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D. and Howard Rheingold (Ballantine, 1990)
A practical guide for lucid dreamers. The first half of the book establishes a basic understanding of sleep and dreams, followed by a progressive series of exercises for developing lucid dreaming skills. These include cataloging “dreamsigns,” your personal landmarks that tell you when you are dreaming, the Reflection-Intention and MILD techniques for becoming lucid within the dream and methods of falling asleep consciously based on ancient Tibetan Yoga practices. Induction methods are followed by practical advice on maintaining and guiding lucid dreams. After presenting the lucid dream induction techniques, Dr. LaBerge explains his understanding of the origin of dreams, founded on current views in the sciences of consciousness and cognition. This provides a foundation for the methods of employing lucid dreams to enhance your life, which are detailed in the second half of the book. The applications considered are: adventures and explorations, rehearsal for living, creative problem solving, overcoming nightmares, healing, and discovery of expanded awareness and spiritual experience. Many delightful and illuminating anecdotes from lucid dreamers illustrate the use of lucid dreams for each application. See Annotated Table of Contents for more details. Available from Amazon.com.

LUCID DREAMING: A CONCISE GUIDE TO AWAKENING IN YOUR DREAMS AND IN YOUR LIFE
By Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D. (Sounds True, 2004)
In this book, Stephen LaBerge invites you on a guided journey to learn to use conscious dreaming in your life. Distilled from his many years of pioneering research at Stanford University and Lucidity Institute—including many new and updated techniques and discoveries—here is the most effective and easy-to-learn tool available for you to begin your own fascinating nightly exploration into Lucid Dreaming. Includes guided practices on CD (or downloadable). Available from Soundstrue.com and Amazon.com.

A COURSE IN LUCID DREAMING

By Stephen LaBerge and Lynne Levitan (Lucidity Institute, updated edition 2002)
This is a comprehensive home-study training program in lucid dreaming. It takes you from the beginning stages of improving your dream recall and becoming familiar with the hallmarks of your dreams, through several different techniques for increasing your ability to have lucid dreams, to mastery of the art of lucid dreaming. All known methods of lucid dream induction are covered. Many focusing exercises help you develop the mental powers needed to become an expert lucid dreamer. Charts and logs assist you in assessing your skill level and monitoring your progress. The Course has five Units and takes a minimum of four months to complete.

Conscious Mind, Sleeping Brain – Perspectives on Lucid Dreaming Edited by Jayne Gackenbach, Ph.D. and Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D. (Plenum, 1988; ISBN 0-306-42849-0)
Nineteen dream researchers and other professionals contributed to this scholarly volume. It represents a wide spectrum of viewpoints in the field of lucid dreaming study and is an essential reference for anyone interested in studying lucid dreams or applying them in clinical practice. Topics include: literature, psychophysiology, personality, therapy, personal experience, related states of consciousness, and more. Out of print; check Addall.com, Half.com, Amazon.com, and other online bookstores for a used copy.

OUR DREAMING MIND
By Robert L. Van de Castle (Ballantine, 1994; ISBN 0-345-39666-9)
An excellent overview of the vast field of dream research; comprehensive and very well written by one of the field’s pioneers. Discounted at Amazon.com.

Lucid Dreams

By Celia E. Green (Hamish Hamilton, London, 1968)
This is the classic book that inspired Dr. LaBerge to begin his studies of lucid dreaming. Green supplemented the scant published literature on lucid dreaming (e.g., the Marquis de Saint-Denys and Frederik van Eeden) with case histories from her own informants to put together a concise and thoughtful picture of the phenomenology of lucid dreaming. A bit dated, but still worth reading 45 years later. Out of print; check Addall.com, Half.com, Amazon.com, and other online bookstores for a used copy.

Dreams and How to Direct Them By The Marquis d’Hervey de Saint-Denys, edited by Morton Schatzman, M.D. (Duckworth, London, 1982)
A great pioneer of the art of lucid dreaming, the Marquis first published this exploration of lucid dreaming in 1867, yet this is a very modern, and yes, lucid, thesis. He describes his personal experiments and the development of his ability to exercise control in his lucid dreams. Out of print; check Addall.com, Half.com, Amazon.com, and other online bookstores for a used copy.

Pathway to Ecstasy: The Way of the Dream Mandala By Patricia Garfield, Ph.D. (Prentice Hall, 1989)
Delightfully told story of Patricia Garfield’s transcendent and erotic adventures with lucid dreaming. Out of print; check Addall.com, Half.com, Amazon.com, and other online bookstores for a used copy.

Controlling Your Dreams By Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D. (Audio Renaissance Tapes, Inc., 1987, 60 minutes)
This audio cassette tape captures the essence of Dr. LaBerge’s public lectures on lucid dreaming. It is highly informative and inspirational. Use it as an excellent introduction to the topic or a concise refresher. Dr. LaBerge begins by portraying the experience of lucid dreaming. He then presents methods for learning the skill, including the powerful MILD technique. The descriptions he gives of possible applications of lucid dreaming, from creative problem solving and rehearsal for living, to overcoming nightmares and achieving greater psychological integration, will encourage you to learn this valuable skill. Available from Amazon.com.

THE LUCID DREAMER
By Malcolm Godwin (Simon & Schuster, 1994)


Beautifully illustrated with nearly 200 full-color and black-and-white illustrations of little known dream masks and Zen paintings, Aboriginal Australian art, North American paintings, and works by modern native primitives, Surrealists, and schizophrenics. The text is a well-written, thoughtful, and inspiring survey of lucid dreaming as viewed primarily from a philosophical and mystical perspective. At Amazon.com.

TRANCE INDUCTION OF LUCID DREAMING (Dream Library)
By Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D. (Lucidity Institute, 1993, 40 minutes)
Dr. LaBerge’s trance induction is designed to help you create a mind-set in which lucid dreaming will happen easily. The hypnotic induction begins with progressive relaxation accompanied by guided visualization of calming images. Once you have attained a peaceful state of mind, Dr. LaBerge gives you suggestions for building confidence that you will succeed at having lucid dreams. You are guided in devising a personal symbol to help you to recognize when you are dreaming. Musical accompaniment by Robert Rich. The Trance audio file is included with A COURSE IN LUCID DREAMING.


4.2   WHERE CAN I FIND LUCID DREAMING WORKSHOPS?

Lucidity Institute offers workshops, in which oneironauts (explorers of the dream world) convene to dedicate several days and nights to developing their lucidity skills under the guidance of Dr. LaBerge. Using the most effective techniques and technology, derived from Tibetan dream yoga and Western science, LaBerge and team present instructions on methods of developing the mental skills that foster lucidity and on directing consciousness within both dreaming and waking states towards fulfillment of personal goals. During these residential workshops, participants also have an opportunity to use the NovaDreamer, and, if they wish, to participate in ongoing research on a natural substance that, according to recent studies, has been shown to stimulate lucidity and mindfulness. Participants in our workshops have enjoyed phenomenal success with lucid dreaming, with most having at least one during the program. For further reviews, see Keelin’s “Diary From Lucid Dream Camp” and Bucky McMahon’s “Loose but Lucid: A Dreamer in Paradise” (pdf).


4.3   WHAT IS LUCIDITY INSTITUTE?

On the internet, anyone can play “expert,” and there are several FAQs on dreaming and lucid dreaming. Which FAQ is authoritative? What qualifies Lucidity Institute to write this FAQ? Why should readers take its contents any more or less seriously than those of other FAQs? These are all reasonable questions to ask. This FAQ was written by Lucidity Institute staff (primarily Lynne Levitan) and Stephen LaBerge. Dr. LaBerge has had more than 35 years of relevant personal and professional experience, having received his Ph.D. in Psychophysiology from Stanford University for his pioneering laboratory research on lucid dreaming. During the course of his dissertation study, he learned to have lucid dreams at will, and has recorded more thousands of lucid dreams which he has used for personal growth and exploration as described in his books  Lucid Dreaming: A Concise Guide to Awakening in Your Dreams and in Your Life. His contributions to lucid dreaming methodology include developing lucid dream induction techniques (e.g., MILD, the counting technique for falling asleep consciously, and early morning napping), the spinning and hand-rubbing techniques for stabilizing lucid dreams, and various lucid dream induction devices such as the DreamLight and NovaDreamer.

His scientific contributions include using eye-movement signals to prove the reality of lucid dreams, characterizing the basic physiology of lucid dreams (and coining the terms DILD and WILD), and showing through a variety of experiments that lucid dream actions affect the brain (and to a lesser extent the body) as-if they were actually happening. Lynne Levitan has also had many years of personal and professional experience with lucid dreaming and has writtten many of the articles for Lucidity Institute’s newsletter.


4.5   WHAT IS THE LUCIDITY INSTITUTE SOCIETY?

Lucidity Institute aims to encourage as many people as possible to learn lucid dreaming and to use it to grow and improve their lives. We also know that the people who see the potential of lucid dreaming are the ones who can help most to map this new frontier and discover its treasures. The Lucidity Institute membership society is an organization for all people interested in lucid dreaming, novices and experts, laymen and scientists.

Members receive frequent short email updates (LUCIDITY*FLASHES) which may include articles on lucid dreaming—new findings, applications, speculations, inspiring examples, and experiments for members to participate in at home. The results from the experiments appear in subsequent issues, so members can benefit from them. Some studies are of methods of inducing lucid dreams, or about ordinary dreams, so that novice lucid dreamers can contribute. Others test activities and applications within lucid dreams.


4.6   WHAT ARE THE LUCIDITY INSTITUTE’S CURRENT RESEARCH PROJECTS?

Lucidity Institute’s research currently has three foci. These are: the mapping of brain activity during the initiation of lucidity, the study of Tibetan Dream Yoga (see more above) methods of inducing and manipulating lucid dreams, and the development of expert explorers of states of consciousness.

The brain mapping project is an extension of prior research into the psychophysiology of the lucid dream state, which found that high physiological activation is a prerequisite for lucidity. The goal is to identify which brain areas are activated during the onset of reflective consciousness in the REM sleep state. With this knowledge, we may be able to develop methods of easily and reliably inducing lucid dreams whenever desired, using biofeedback or direct stimulation.

The study of Tibetan Buddhist Dream Yoga techniques of lucid dreaming is aimed at making use of the thousand years of experience accumulated by this tradition. Literature currently available is couched in esoteric language from which it is difficult to discriminate useful techniques from culture-bound ritual. Through online and laboratory experiments, we are testing the effectiveness of lucid dream induction methods found in the Buddhist doctrine and dream yoga.

The third aspect of our work is part of the long term goal of Lucidity Institute to foster understanding of all types of higher states of consciousness. The purpose of this project is to assemble and train a group of individuals with extensive experience in meditation, lucid dreaming, hypnosis, and other altered states to facilitate study of these states’ mind-body relations and potential applications and benefits. 4.7   HOW CAN I GET INVOLVED WITH LUCID DREAMING RESEARCH?

Students who wish to conduct research on lucid dreaming can prepare by studying the fields of psychology and neuroscience.

The best way to contribute to ongoing lucid dream research by participating in the experiments on Lucidity Institute’s website. These experiments are designed for individuals to carry out at home and report the results back to Lucidity Institute for analysis and publication. Much of our current knowledge about the most effective methods of inducing lucid dreams has come from such experiments, as has valuable information about the nature of dreams. We are grateful to our oneironauts (explorers of the dream world) for helping us to advance understanding of dreams and lucidity.




 

 

Resources/Related:

Lucidity Institute Experiments

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Sleep Paralysis | Lisa’s leaks – ‘Madness in the Magnolias’

International Association for the Study of Dreams

Lucid Dreaming A Concise Guide To Awakening In Your Dreams And …

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The Top 10 Lucid Dreaming Masks/Devices In 2018 Compared

REM Dreamer Lucid Dreaming Induction Device

Remee | Dream Better

Tech for Lucid Dreaming Takes Off—But Will Any of It Work? – IEEE .

Rapid eye movement sleep

Why do we dream? – The REM state

REM Sleep – Types and Stages of Sleep

The Possible Functions of REM Sleep and Dreaming – Neuroscience …

Why REM Sleep and Dreams Are Important for Health | Time

Drugs that induce lucid dreaming – Bluelight

Review of Galantamine: the Lucid Dreaming Pill | dream studies portal

Drugs that would help you lucid dream on purpose – luciddreaming ..

5 Lucid Dream Supplements & Herbs

Legal Drugs That Promote Lucid Dreaming – Drugs and Bad Ideas

Oneironaut

School of Oneironautics

Oneironautics – What Is An Oneironaut? Well, It’s Many Things.

How to be an Oneironaut | Brian D. Buckley

Lucid Dreaming and Self-Realization | Psychology Today

NovaDreamer: The Next Generation Lucid Dream Induction Device

Tibetan Dream Yoga Instructions – dreamyoga

Tibetan Dream Yoga: A Complete System for Becoming Conscious in …

The Daytime Practices of Dream Yoga – Reality Sandwich

Buddhist doctrine and dream yoga

Tibetan Dream Yogis

Dream Yoga: Lucid Dreaming in Tibetan Buddhism

Tibetan Dream Yoga and Integral Deep Listening – dreamyoga

lucid dreaming – dreams of clarity – Semantic Scholar

The Transpersonal Movement – Association for Transpersonal Psychology

Brain Basics: Understanding Sleep | National Institute of Neurological ..

“Diary From Lucid Dream Camp” by Keelin. The further adventures of an admitted dreamer at the first annual lucid dreaming workshop: Consciousness: Dreaming and Waking at Stanford University.

The Dream Catcher – Matter

3 Ways to Lucid Dream

World of Lucid Dreaming

What It’s Like to Be an Expert Lucid Dreamer

Surrealism

The Benefits and Risks of Lucid Dreaming

A Beginners Guide to Lucid Dreaming – YouTube

Learn How to Control Your Dreams

Stephen LaBerge Lucid Dreaming (1/10) – YouTube

9 Bestselling Books on Lucid Dreaming – World of Lucid Dreaming

Scientific American Blog Network

Live Science

The Science of Lucid Dreaming | TED-Ed

The mysteries of ‘lucid’ dreaming | Science

Chance, Creativity, and Idiosyncratic Traits

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Any honest successful entrepreneur will tell you that luck and timing were critical to her success. Because luck and timing are not reproducible, we only have clarity in hindsight. Every event in the past has only happened once and will never repeat itself. And the very nature of luck, is that, well, it happens by chance. Timing you can anticipate; luck just happens without your control. However, what is within your control is the probability of chance favoring you, echoing the famous statement by Louis Pasteur that “chance favors the prepared mind.”

Chance, at first glance, may seem binary. You either get lucky or you don’t. The truth is chance varies depending on who the person is. The question I want to digest is “can one alter their behavior and mind to become luckier?” I normally prefer to go from practice to theory. To look at examples first before extrapolating common theories derived from the examples. The reason being is that in theory, theory and practice work the same; in practice, they often don’t. I want to take the theory approach first then dive into the examples. To explore how the X-ray was discovered and to see why Charles Darwin’s reading habits primed his mind so that when he read Malthus’ essay, the seeds of theory of evolution formed in his head.

Serendipity is often the term used to describe the moment when an unplanned collision occurs between two or more ideas. It is that euphoric moment when the eyes widen and the ideas seem to fit perfectly. I very much like the phrase by Matt Ridley who described it as “ideas having sex.” The word serendipity actually comes from a tail known as The three princes of Serendip. It describes three brothers who, along their journey, stumbled upon discovery after discovery. For a discovery to be serendipitous, it must not be something you are looking for nor planning encounter…it just happens by chance. Yet most people confuse this with randomness, thinking that one cannot create the environment that promotes serendipitous moments.

The three brothers of Serendip were not sitting on the couch hoping to reach a spark of brilliance. Rather they were out, exploring the world and engaging in new experiences. It is in this behavior that causes chance to favor some over others.

Chance has four modes of operating. Chance I is the type of luck that occurs completely accidental. You walk on the street and find a $100 bill on the ground. There was nothing you did to trigger this incident. It is often called “blind luck.”

Chance II occurs because you are in a state of motion. It is known as the Kettering Principle, named after Charles F. Kettering. Being in a state of motion results in a higher likelihood of collisions between people and ideas. The three brothers of Serendip epitomize this principle. They explored new territories, which meant that they had a higher probability of encountering unique experiences and ideas.

Chance III is known as the Pasteur Principle, named after Louis Pasteur who said that “chance favors the prepared mind.” This one is of particular interest because two people can be looking at the same thing, and one might make a significant discovery while the other simply looks and moves on.

The last chance, Chance IV, is a unique kind of chance because it is a result of a very peculiar behavioral trait. Idiosyncratic individuals fall in this camp. They are the weird ones, the ones who have an odd set of traits that allows them to view the world differently form everyone else.

James Austen, author of “Chase, Chance, and Creativity,” had this incredible chart depicting the four types of chances:

I am particularly curious about Chance III and Chance IV because those two are where the majority of great ideas and invention reside. James Austin writes about the discovery of the X-ray:

As one example of Chance III (the prepared mind), we can turn to Conrad Rontgen’s discovery of the X ray. One day in 1895, Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen was experimenting with cathode rays in a darkened room. Some barium platinocyanide happened to be nearby. Suddenly, he noticed that the barium salt seemed to emit its own light — to fluoresce. No ordinary light rays could have been generated by the cathode tube and then been transmitted across the room to light up the barium, because a solid piece of cardboard blocked the path of light between the tube and the barium. Rontgen concluded that he was in the presence of something — that powerful invisible rays generated by the cathode tube had gone through the cardboard.

Roentgen had the proper background and knowledge base to notice this peculiar behavior of light rays. We humans have an incredible ability to notice inconsistencies and when something doesn’t fit the patterns we’ve formed of the world. Rontgen was able to quickly understand that something new was happening because his deep knowledge allowed him to notice the odd behavior and formed a hunch that something unique was taking place. It so happened that the barium was nearby and the elements were in the right place — a chance occurrence. This might have happened to other people, but Rontgen was able to capitalize on this because he had a prepared mind.

Charles Darwin is another example of Chance III and IV at work. He is an example to many people in their twenties still trying to figure out what path in life they should take. When he was 28, his father had concluded that his son was not going to be good at anything because Darwin had failed at every field he tried to pursue. What made Darwin peculiar was what he did in his free time.

Darwin would wonder the beach observing creatures and sea animals. By the time he was 28, with no solid life prospects, he happened to hear about a ship that was going to travel the coasts of the African continent collecting data on species. After initially hesitating and being “realistic,” Darwin decided to go. He spent 8–12 years at sea, just collecting data and observing species. When he landed on the Galapagos islands, he noticed an odd similarity with the species there and other species far away. He didn’t have an epiphany, simply a hunch that something was off. It took another decade for the hunch to form into a theory.

When he returned to England, he began studying the data he collected. Darwin had a diverse reading habit, which caused him to stumble upon Thomas Malthus’s paper calledAn Essay on the Principle of Population.” After he read it, he immediately found an explanation to the data he had was studying. He connected the dots between the essay, the data from the trip, and the lingering hunch he formed at the Galapagos islands. It was then that Darwin thought of the Theory of Evolution. Coincidentally, another man by the name of Alfred Russel Wallace also came up the same theory after reading the same essay by Malthus; Darwin and Wallace never, not once, met each other throughout their lifetime. This goes into another thought provoking question: are innovations inevitable?

Charles Darwin is an example of Chance II, III, and IV because of his explorations, deep knowledge base, and peculiar reading habit. One could make the claim that had Darwin not read Malthus’ essay, he would have lived with a hunch throughout the remainder of his life. But chance favors the prepared mind, and he probably would have stumbled upon another economist’s ideas years later that would have caused the disparate ideas in his mind to form together.

Chance IV is known as the Disraeli Principle. It builds on top of previous forms of chance and favors those who have a very peculiar set of behaviors and tendencies. Creatives often display an idiosyncratic set of contradictory traits. Here is a great chart that displays them:

The engineer, scientist, writer, and artist can be both a lone wolf and work very well at integrating her ideas. She can be playful in her experimentation and serious in her work. Creatives not only shift in the spectrum of their personality, but also in their mindsets. Einstein was known for playing the violin when he reached in impasse. He went from an analytical mindset to a musical mindset, and allowed himself to be consumed by the music. This gave him a refreshed perspective when he returned to his work.

It is often amusing how some software engineers figure out a solution to a problem. When I am stuck on a problem, I sometimes figure out the solution when I am brushing my teeth or when I am about to sleep, which can be frustrating at times because you must act before the solution is gone from your mind.

Idiosyncratic traits are not only weird ones, but they can also be normal ones, like reading, that are done with such intensity and oddness. Nathan Myhrvold, the former CTO of Microsoft who now runs Intellectual Ventures — a firm for creating new ideas — is a physicist who reads medical journals for fun. Orit Gadiesh (below right), the chairman of management consulting firm Bain, reads over 100 books a year:

“I bring into my work everything I do; all of my past consulting projects, all of my readings [100+ books a year]. I read novels. I read about physics, mathematics, history, biographies, art. One reason I work well in Germany is that I’ve read a lot of German literature, German philosophers, German history, etc., even though I’m Israeli. They’re great writers. Likewise, I can work in France because I’ve read their literature. I’ve read Japanese literature, Korean literature, English literature, American literature, Israeli literature, and on and on. I bring all of that somehow into my work. And I think that makes me better at what I do. It also makes life more interesting.”

Malcolm Gladwell wrote a piece in the New Yorker a few years ago on “Ideas are in the sky” discussing a theory among historians known as the Multiple Theory of Invention. It states that inventions occur not simply because a great mind is at work, but because ideas are in the sky — a term meaning that some ideas are circulating amongst the minds of the people at the time. “There were four independent discoveries of sunspots, all in 1611; namely, by Galileo in Italy, Scheiner in Germany, Fabricius in Holland and Harriott in England,” (see Historical Sunspot Record) wrote Ogburn and Thomas, the authors of the paperAre Inventions Inevitable?

The law of the conservation of energy, so significant in science and philosophy, was formulated four times independently in 1847, by Joule, Thomson, Colding and Helmholz. They had been anticipated by Julius Robert von Mayer in 1842. There seem to have been at least six different inventors of the thermometer and no less than nine claimants of the invention of the telescope. Typewriting machines were invented simultaneously in England and in America by several individuals in these countries. The steamboat is claimed as the “exclusive” discovery of Fulton, Jouffroy, Rumsey, Stevens and Symmington.

The ideas for the inventions were circulating amongst society — or in the sky — at the time the great minds went to work. This circulation of ideas is a result of information freely flowing between people. Today, we have an abundance of information that can sometimes be overbearing. I believe the most valuable use of this information is in the form of streams. Streams of information in the form of Twitter feeds (following great minds from disparate fields), newsletters on the state of the art in technology and science, magazine subscriptions such as The New Yorker.

The key is to carefully curate the streams of information so that there is a higher chance of ideas forming in your mind. This, combined with the deep domain knowledge if your field, makes it more likely that you might stumble upon an idea that is very valuable. It often occurs that this good idea only comes after many bad ones.

Chance favors those who have prepared their mind, continuously explore areas, read voraciously, and have a peculiar set of traits that allows new opportunities to form around them.

 

 

 

Resources/Related:

Seeking Intellect Newsletter

The three princes of Serendip: Notes on a mysterious phenomenon

The Three Princes of Serendip: Part I – Living Heritage Trust

Thomas Malthus

Charles Darwin’s debt to malthus and Edward Blyth – Biology Learning …

Early Theories of Evolution: Darwin and Natural Selection

In the Air | The New Yorker

The Source Field Investigations: The Hidden Science and Lost ..

Independent Discovery: A Cautionary Tale

Are Inventions Inevitable?

Darwin on a Godless Creation: “It’s like confessing to a murder .

Scholarly articles for Joule, Thomson, Colding and Helmholz

The New Enlightenment: A Twenty-First Century Peaceful American ..

Be Positive: Even If It’s Not Your Blood Type Your Life Will Change

The Simplicity of Awakening

Morphic Resonance

Full text of “A History Of Technology

Robert Fulton – Forgotten Books

Malcolm Gladwell’s mind-blowing ideas – Business Insider

Reading These 3 Malcolm Gladwell Books Will Help You Realize Your

Where Good Ideas Come From: a Natural History of Innovation, By .

Bain & Company chairman Orit Gadiesh on the importance of curiosity

Lessons from Bain & Company chairman Orit Gadiesh on how to ..

Idiosyncratic

What is the difference between luck and serendipity?

Serendipity

Colorado’s home-based education law is the legislative declaration

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I home-school my students, Ben Elkins and Faith Neal, independently, using a curriculum that I created and assembled on my own for school year(s) 2016 and 2017 at: 5170 Buckskin Ave., Colorado City, CO. 81019.

Ben Elkins D.O.B. 12/14/2001

Faith Neal D.O.B. 09/01/2001

Based on Colorado’s home-based education law is the legislative declaration:

The general assembly hereby declares that it is the primary right and obligation of the parent to choose the proper education and training for children under his care and supervision. It is recognized that home-based education is a legitimate alternative to classroom attendance for the instruction of children and that any regulation of nonpublic home-based educational programs should be sufficiently flexible to accommodate a variety of circumstances. The general assembly further declares that nonpublic home-based educational programs shall be subject only to minimum state controls which are currently applicable to other forms of nonpublic education.

C.R.S. 22-33-104.5

 

COLORADO REVISED STATUTES
*** This document reflects changes passed at the Second Regular Session and First Extraordinary Session
of the Sixty-Eighth General Assembly of the State of Colorado (2012) ***
TITLE 22. EDUCATION  
SCHOOL DISTRICTS  
ARTICLE 33. SCHOOL ATTENDANCE LAW OF 1963  
PART 1. SCHOOL ATTENDANCE LAW OF 1963
C.R.S. 22-33-104.5 (2012)
22-33-104.5. Home-based education – legislative declaration – definitions – guidelines



(1) The general assembly hereby declares that it is the primary right and obligation of the parent to choose the proper education and training for children under his care and supervision. It is recognized that home-based education is a legitimate alternative to classroom attendance for the instruction of children and that any regulation of nonpublic home-based educational programs should be sufficiently flexible to accommodate a variety of circumstances. The general assembly further declares that nonpublic home-based educational programs shall be subject only to minimum state controls which are currently applicable to other forms of nonpublic education.

(2) As used in this section:

(a) “Nonpublic home-based educational program” means the sequential program of instruction for the education of a child which takes place in a home, which is provided by the child’s parent or by an adult relative of the child designated by the parent, and which is not under the supervision and control of a school district. This educational program is not intended to be and does not qualify as a private and nonprofit school.

(b) “Parent” includes a parent or guardian.

(c) “Qualified person” means an individual who is selected by the parent of a child who is participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program to evaluate such child’s progress and who is a teacher licensed pursuant to article 60.5 of this title, a teacher who is employed by an independent or parochial school, a licensed psychologist, or a person with a graduate degree in education.

(3) The following guidelines shall apply to a nonpublic home-based educational program:

(a) A parent or an adult relative designated by a parent to provide instruction in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall not be subject to the requirements of the “Colorado Educator Licensing Act of 1991”, article 60.5 of this title, nor to the provisions of article 61 of this title relating to teacher employment.

(b) A child who is participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall not be subject to compulsory school attendance as provided in this article; except that any child who is habitually truant, as defined in section 22-33-107 (3), at any time during the last six months that the child attended school before proposed enrollment in a nonpublic home-based educational program may not be enrolled in the program unless the child’s parents first submit a written description of the curricula to be used in the program along with the written notification of establishment of the program required in paragraph (e) of this subsection (3) to any school district within the state.

(c) A nonpublic home-based educational program shall include no less than one hundred seventy-two days of instruction, averaging four instructional contact hours per day.

(d) A nonpublic home-based educational program shall include, but need not be limited to, communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking, mathematics, history, civics, literature, science, and regular courses of instruction in the constitution of the United States as provided insection 22-1-108.

(e) Any parent establishing a nonpublic home-based educational program shall provide written notification of the establishment of said program to a school district within the state fourteen days prior to the establishment of said program and each year thereafter if the program is maintained. The parent in charge and in control of a nonpublic home-based educational program shall certify, in writing, only a statement containing the name, age, place of residence, and number of hours of attendance of each child enrolled in said program. Notwithstanding the provisions of section 22-33-104 (1), a parent who intends to establish a nonpublic home-based educational program is not required to:

(I) Provide written notification of the program to a school district within the state until the parent’s child is six years of age;

(II) Establish the program until the parent’s child is seven years of age; or

(III) Continue the program or provide the notification after the child is sixteen years of age.

(f) Each child participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall be evaluated when such child reaches grades three, five, seven, nine, and eleven. Each child shall be given a nationally standardized achievement test to evaluate the child’s academic progress, or a qualified person shall evaluate the child’s academic progress. The test or evaluation results, whichever is appropriate, shall be submitted to the school district that received the notification required by paragraph (e) of this subsection (3) or an independent or parochial school within the state of Colorado. If the test or evaluation results are submitted to an independent or parochial school, the name of such school shall be provided to the school district that received the notification required by paragraph (e) of this subsection (3). The purpose of such tests or evaluations shall be to evaluate the educational progress of each child. No scores for a child participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall be considered in measuring school performance or determining accreditation pursuant to article 11 of this title.

(g) The records of each child participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall be maintained on a permanent basis by the parent in charge and in control of said program. The records shall include, but need not be limited to, attendance data, test and evaluation results, and immunization records, as required by sections 25-4-901, 25-4-902, and 25-4-903, C.R.S. Such records shall be produced to the school district that received the notification required by paragraph (e) of this subsection (3) upon fourteen days’ written notice if the superintendent of said school district has probable cause to believe that said program is not in compliance with the guidelines established in this subsection (3).

(4) Any child who has participated in a nonpublic home-based educational program and who subsequently enrolls in the public school system may be tested by the school district in which the child has enrolled for the purpose of placing the child in the proper grade and shall then be placed at the grade level deemed most appropriate by said school district, with the consent of the child’s parent or legal guardian. The school district shall accept the transcripts for credit from the non-public home-based educational program for any such child; except that the school district may reject such transcripts if the school district administers testing to such child and the testing does not verify the accuracy of such transcripts.

(5) (a) (I) If test results submitted to the appropriate school district pursuant to the provisions of paragraph (f) of subsection (3) of this section show that a child participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program received a composite score on said test which was above the thirteenth percentile, such child shall continue to be exempt from the compulsory school attendance requirement of this article. If the child’s composite score on said test is at or below the thirteenth percentile, the school district shall require the parents to place said child in a public or independent or parochial school until the next testing period; except that no action shall be taken until the child is given the opportunity to be retested using an alternate version of the same test or a different nationally standardized achievement test selected by the parent from a list of approved tests supplied by the state board.

(II) If evaluation results submitted to the appropriate school district pursuant to the provisions of paragraph (f) of subsection (3) of this section show that the child is making sufficient academic progress according to the child’s ability, the child will continue to be exempt from the compulsory school attendance requirement of this article. If the evaluation results show that the child is not making sufficient academic progress, the school district shall require the child’s parents to place the child in a public or independent or parochial school until the next testing period.

(b) If the child’s test or evaluation results are submitted to an independent or parochial school, said school shall notify the school district that received the notification pursuant to paragraph (e) of subsection (3) of this section if the composite score on said test was at or below the thirteenth percentile or if the evaluation results show that the child is not making sufficient academic progress. The school district shall then require the parents to proceed in the manner specified in paragraph (a) of this subsection (5).

(6) (a) If a child is participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program but also attending a public school for a portion of the school day, the school district of the public school shall be entitled to count such child in accordance with the provisions of section 22-54-103 (10) for purposes of determining pupil enrollment under the “Public School Finance Act of 1994”, article 54 of this title.

(b) (I) For purposes of this subsection (6), a child who is participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall have the same rights as a student enrolled in a public school of the school district in which the child resides or is enrolled and may participate on an equal basis in any extracurricular or interscholastic activity offered by a public school or offered by a private school, at the private school’s discretion, as provided in section 22-32-116.5 and is subject to the same rules of any interscholastic organization or association of which the student’s school of participation is a member.

(II) (A) Except as provided for in sub-subparagraph (B) of this subparagraph (II), for purposes ofsection 22-32-116.5, the school district of attendance for a child who is participating in a nonpublic home-based educational program shall be deemed to be the school district that received the notification pursuant to paragraph (e) of subsection (3) of this section.

(B) For purposes of section 22-32-116.5, the school district of attendance for a child who withdraws from a public or private school more than fifteen days after the start of the school year and enters a non-public home-based educational program shall be the school district or private school from which the child withdrew for the remainder of that school year. If, during the remainder of that academic year, the child chooses to participate in extracurricular or interscholastic activities at the same school and was eligible for participation prior to withdrawing from the school, the child remains eligible to participate at such school.

(c) No child participating in an extracurricular or interscholastic activity pursuant to paragraph (b) of this subsection (6) shall be considered attending the public school district where the child participates in such activity for purposes of determining pupil enrollment under paragraph (a) of this subsection (6).

(d) As used in this subsection (6), “extracurricular or interscholastic activities” shall have the same meaning as “activity” as set forth in section 22-32-116.5 (10).

(e) If any fee is collected pursuant to this subsection (6) for participation in an activity, the fee shall be used to fund the particular activity for which it is charged and shall not be expended for any other purpose.

HISTORY: Source:. L. 88: (6) amended, p. 812, § 12, effective May 24; entire section added, p. 766, § 1, effective July 1.L. 93: (6) amended, p. 457, § 2, effective April 19.L. 94: (2)(c) added and (3)(e), (3)(f), and (5) amended, p. 618, § § 1, 2, effective April 14; (3)(b), IP(6)(b), (6)(b)(II), and (6)(b)(V) amended, p. 677, § 2, effective April 19; (6)(a) amended, p. 813, § 29, effective April 27; (6)(e) added, p. 1283, § 8, effective May 22; (6)(b) and (6)(c) amended and (6)(d) added, p. 2837, § 2, effective June 7.L. 96: (6)(b) and (6)(d) amended, p. 1022, § 2, effective May 23.L. 2000: (3)(b), (3)(e), (3)(f), (3)(g), (4), (5), (6)(a), and (6)(b) amended, p. 369, § 22, effective April 10; (2)(c) and (3)(a) amended, p. 1857, § 61, effective August 2.L. 2001: (3)(b), (3)(f), (4), and (6)(b)(I) amended, p. 1494, § 17, effective June 8.L. 2006: (3)(e) amended, p. 1213, § 4, effective July 1, 2007.L. 2007: (3)(e) amended, p. 71, § 2, effective July 1, 2008.L. 2009: (3)(f) amended, (SB 09-163), ch. 293, p. 1543, § 47, effective May 21.



Editor’s note: Subsection (6)(d) was numbered as subsection (6)(f) in House Bill 94-1094 but was renumbered on revision for ease of location.

Cross references: (1) For further provisions concerning student participation in interscholastic activities in a school in which they do not attend, see § 22-32-116.5.

(2) For the legislative declaration contained in the 2006 act amending subsection (3)(e), see section 1 of chapter 265, Session Laws of Colorado 2006.
———————————————————-

Compulsory attendance law

(For readers’ reference, copy and pasted Oct. 11, 2012)

C.R.S. 22-33-104


COLORADO REVISED STATUTES
*** This document reflects changes passed at the Second Regular Session and First Extraordinary Session
of the Sixty-Eighth General Assembly of the State of Colorado (2012) ***
TITLE 22. EDUCATION  
SCHOOL DISTRICTS  
ARTICLE 33. SCHOOL ATTENDANCE LAW OF 1963  
PART 1. SCHOOL ATTENDANCE LAW OF 1963
C.R.S. 22-33-104 (2012)
22-33-104. Compulsory school attendance



(1) (a) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (2) of this section, every child who has attained the age of six years on or before August 1 of each year and is under the age of seventeen years, except as provided by this section, shall attend public school for at least the following number of hours during each school year:

(I) One thousand fifty-six hours if a secondary school pupil;

(II) Nine hundred sixty-eight hours if an elementary school pupil in a grade other than kindergarten;

(III) Nine hundred hours if a full-day kindergarten pupil; or

(IV) Four hundred fifty hours if a half-day kindergarten pupil.

(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection (1), a school or schools shall not be in session for fewer than one hundred sixty days without the specific prior approval of the commissioner of education.

(c) A student who participates in an on-line program or on-line school pursuant to the provisions of article 30.7 of this title shall be deemed to attend school in accordance with the requirements of this subsection (1).

(d) Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to require a child who begins attending preschool or kindergarten at five or six years of age to advance to first grade in the following school year. A parent of a child who began attending preschool or kindergarten at five or six years of age may notify the child’s school of the parent’s wish that the child not advance to first grade in the following school year, and a school that receives such notice shall not advance the child to first grade in the following school year.

(1.5) (Deleted by amendment, L. 2006, p. 1211, § 2, effective July 1, 2007.)

(2) The provisions of subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to a child:

(a) Who is temporarily ill or injured or whose absence is approved by the administrator of the school of attendance;

(b) Who is enrolled for a minimum of one hundred seventy-two days in an independent or parochial school which provides a basic academic education. “Basic academic education” for the purpose of this article means the sequential program of instruction provided by an independent or parochial school. Such program shall include, but not be limited to, communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking, mathematics, history, civics, literature, and science.

(c) Who is absent for an extended period due to physical, mental, or emotional disability;

(d) Who has been suspended, expelled, or denied admission in accordance with the provisions of this article; except that, when a pupil is expelled for the remainder of the school year, the parent, guardian, or legal custodian is responsible for seeing that either the provisions of subsection (1) of this section are complied with during the period of expulsion from the school district or that the pupil meets the conditions for exemption specified in paragraph (b) or (i) of this subsection (2);

(e) To whom a current age and school certificate or work permit has been issued pursuant to the “Colorado Youth Employment Opportunity Act of 1971”, article 12 of title 8, C.R.S.;

(f) Who is in the custody of a court or law enforcement authorities;

(g) Who is pursuing a work-study program under the supervision of a public school;

(h) Who has graduated from the twelfth grade;

(i) Who is being instructed at home:

(I) By a teacher licensed pursuant to article 60.5 or 61 of this title; or

(II) Under a nonpublic home-based educational program pursuant to section 22-33-104.5.

(III) (Deleted by amendment, L. 2003, p. 2131, § 24, effective May 22, 2003.)

(j) Who is enrolled in a school where the state board of education has approved a lesser number of days.

(3) Unless within one of the exceptions listed in subsection (2) of this section, a child who is deaf or blind, and who has attained the age of six years and is under the age of seventeen, shall attend, for at least one hundred seventy-two days during the school year, a school which provides suitable specialized instruction. The provisions of this subsection (3) shall not apply to a child if the Colorado school for the deaf and the blind refuses him admission and it is impractical to arrange for attendance at a special education class, as provided in article 20 of this title, within daily commuting distance of the child’s home. If any school providing instruction for deaf or blind children offers fewer than the necessary one hundred seventy-two days of instruction, the school shall file with the school district in which it is located a report showing the number of days classes were held and the names and ages of the children enrolled.

(4) (a) The board of education shall adopt a written policy setting forth the district’s attendance requirements. Said policy shall provide for excused absences, including those listed as exclusions from compulsory school attendance in accordance with subsection (2) of this section. An attendance policy developed pursuant to this section may include appropriate penalties for nonattendance due to unexcused absence.

(b) The attendance policy adopted pursuant to this subsection (4) shall specify the maximum number of unexcused absences a child may incur before the attorney for the school district, the attendance officer, or the local board of education may initiate judicial proceedings pursuant to section 22-33-108. Calculation of the number of unexcused absences a child has incurred includes all unexcused absences occurring during any calendar year or during any school year.

(c) On or before January 1, 2009, the state board shall adopt rules establishing a standardized calculation for counting unexcused absences of students, including the circumstance in which a student is absent for part of a school day, and the format for reporting the information to the department pursuant to section 22-33-107.

(5) (a) The general assembly hereby declares that two of the most important factors in ensuring a child’s educational development are parental involvement and parental responsibility. The general assembly further declares that it is the obligation of every parent to ensure that every child under such parent’s care and supervision receives adequate education and training. Therefore, every parent of a child who has attained the age of six years on or before August 1 of each year and is under the age of seventeen years shall ensure that such child attends the public school in which such child is enrolled in compliance with this section.

(b) Parents whose children are enrolled in an independent or parochial school or a non-public home-based educational program pursuant to the provisions of subsection (2) of this section shall be exempt from the requirements of this subsection (5).

HISTORY: Source: L. 63: p. 862, § 5. C.R.S. 1963: § 123-20-5.L. 73: pp. 1254, 1314, § § 5, 6.L. 74: (2)(j) added, p. 363, § 1, effective March 19.L. 77: (1) amended, p. 1071, § 4, effective May 24.L. 80: (1) amended, p. 551, § 2, effective April 30.L. 83: (2)(b) amended, p. 755, § 1, effective June 3.L. 84: (4) added, p. 597, § 2, effective April 5.L. 86: (1) amended, p. 801, § 4, effective July 1.L. 87: (2)(i) amended, p. 829, § 1, effective July 1.L. 88: (2)(j) amended, p. 768, § 2, effective July 1.L. 93: (5) added, p. 457, § 1, effective April 19; (2)(d) amended, p. 454, § 6, effective July 1.L. 94: (4) amended, p. 678, § 3, effective April 19.L. 97: (1.5) added, p. 41, § 1, effective July 1.L. 98: (1), (2)(d), and (2)(i) amended, p. 654, § 1, effective August 5.L. 2000: (2)(i)(I) amended, p. 1857, § 60, effective August 2.L. 2003: (1) and (2)(i)(III) amended, p. 2131, § 24, effective May 22.L. 2006: (1), (1.5), and (5)(a) amended, p. 1211, § 2, effective July 1, 2007.L. 2007: (1)(c) amended, p. 1089, § 15, effective July 1; IP(1)(a) and (5)(a) amended and (1)(d) added, p. 70, § 1, effective July 1, 2008.L. 2008: (4)(c) added, p. 517, § 1, effective August 5.L. 2009: (4)(a) amended, (HB 09-1243), ch. 290, p. 1423, § 3, effective May 21.L. 2012: (1)(c) amended, (HB 12-1240), ch. 258, p. 1330, § 44, effective June 4.



Cross references: For the legislative declaration contained in the 2006 act amending subsections (1), (1.5), and (5)(a), see section 1 of chapter 265, Session Laws of Colorado 2006.

ANNOTATION

Law reviews. For article, “Children in Need: Observations of Practice of the Denver Juvenile Court”, see 51 Den. L.J. 337 (1974). For article, “Truancy in Colorado: A Truancy Reduction Model in the Public Schools”, see 34 Colo. Law. 19 (November 2005).

The state, for its own protection, may require children to be educated. People ex rel. Vallimar v. Stanley, 81 Colo. 276, 255 P. 610 (1927).

Compulsory attendance law constitutionally enacted. The general assembly did not exceed its constitutional authority in enacting the compulsory school attendance law. In Interest of Y.D.M., 197 Colo. 403, 593 P.2d 1356 (1979).

List of exclusions from compulsory attendance not exhaustive. Although this section specifically enumerates several circumstances which, if proven, render the compulsory attendance law inapplicable, this list of justifications is not exhaustive. In Interest of Y.D.M., 197 Colo. 403, 593 P.2d 1356 (1979).

Placing burden on child to show absences excused is not unfair. It is not manifestly unfair to place on the child the burden to show that her absences from school were excused, for the facts which prove or disprove a claimed excuse are uniquely within the knowledge of the child and its parents or custodian. In Interest of Y.D.M., 197 Colo. 403, 593 P.2d 1356 (1979).

Common-law defense of duress has not been abrogated by the compulsory attendance statute, and the court must instruct the jury on this defense if requested. In Interest of Y.D.M., 197 Colo. 403, 593 P.2d 1356 (1979).

Denial of credit because of absences may be invalid. Where a school district’s policy denies academic credit to students with more than seven absences, even if the absences are due partially to suspensions and excused absences, such policy is inconsistent with this section, and is thus invalid or inconsistent with state law. Gutierrez v. Sch. Dist. R-1, 41 Colo. App. 411, 585 P.2d 935 (1978) (decided prior to 1984 amendment adding subsection (4)).

For previous exemption of those over 14 who have completed eighth grade, see Washington County High Sch. Dist. v. Bd. of Comm’rs, 85 Colo. 72, 273 P. 879 (1928).

Exemption of subsection (2) requires only enrollment, not attendance, at independent or parochial school. Legislative change substituting word “enrolled” for word “attends” was clear evidence of intent not to require physical presence at independent or parochial school. Periodic attendance for testing only by students otherwise tutored at home was therefore adequate satisfaction of compulsory attendance statute. People in Interest of D.B., 767 P.2d 801 (Colo. App. 1988).

Israel, Guatemala and Genocide

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Guatemala’s President, Jimmy Morales (photo), has announced that his country would move its embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem.

James Morales Cabrera is a professor of Baptist Theology and a huge admirer of the United States. So much so, he changed his Christian name to Jimmy to make it more American. He took the position of being a strong critic of the lack of morality. Together with brother Sammy, he starred in the television series Moralejas (Morales) and in seven films, one of which was an Alejo Crisóstomo film: Fe (Faith). However none of this prevented his children and Sammy being charged with organizing the illegal funding of his electoral campaign.

To understand Guatemala’s relations with Israel, we need to cast our minds back to the years 1982-83, when at the height of the civil war, General Efraín Ríos Montt, dictator of Guatemala, was brought to power by a coup d’état organised by the CIA.

General Ríos Montt was the brother of the Catholic Bishop Monsigneur Mario Ríos Montt. However the General abandoned Catholicism and converted to the Church of the Verb. This is a sect affiliated to Gospel Outreach, which is itself directly linked to the Pentagon. Then he struck up a friendship with Jerry Falwell (the US Pastor) and Pat Robertson (the US Media Magnate).

General Ríos Montt, who was photographed with a submachine gun in one hand and the Bible in the other, fought ferociously, both against Marxist guerrillas and indigenous groups. In particular, he received 300 Israeli advisers who trained his army and with which he conducted an experiment on the Maya Indians. The aim of the experiment was to test the conditions to create pseudo independent states, following the model that the Israeli Mossad had already tried to apply in the South Africa of apartheid, with the creation of the (Bantoustan’s) and as a prelude to what could be the future Palestinian (States), Cisjordan and Gaza.

Ari Ben-Menashe has related part of the secret relations between Guatemala and Israel in his book, ‘Profits of War : Inside the Secret U.S.-Israeli Arms Network. He exposes how under the orders of President Raegan, the US National Security Adviser, Robert McFarlane, and General Ariel Sharon organized for the illegal transfer of six helicopters to Guatemala’s army.

https://www.amazon.com/Books-Ari-Ben-Menashe/s?ie=UTF8&page=1&rh=n%3A283155%2Cp_27%3AAri%20Ben-Menashe

These facts were verified in November 2016, during the trial of the Former Army Chief Benedicto Lucas García charged with genocide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Resources/Related:

Israel’s shadowy role in Guatemala’s dirty war

Israel and Guatemala

Guatemala | CJA

Guatemalan Civil War

Thirty Years Later, U.S.-backed Guate

Ex-Guatemalan dictator found guilty of genocide – People’s World

Former US puppet convicted of genocide in Guatemala – Workers World

1954 Guatemalan coup d’état

The Maya Genocide Trial | The New Yorker

Gen. Efraín Ríos Montt of Guatemala Guilty of Genocide

Mossad

Operations conducted by the Mossad

Report: Trump revealed Israeli commando and Mossad operation in .

Welcome to our website

The truth about the Mossad

Mossad – The World’s Most Efficient Killing Machine – Rense

Guatemalan Mayan Genocide

Judge Charges Former Army Chief Benedicto Lucas García in Molina ..

Jimmy Morales

Guatemala Continues Pressure Against President Jimmy Morales .

Guatemala to move embassy to Jerusalem, president says – CNN

Efraín Ríos Montt

José Efraín Ríos Montt | dictator of Guatemala

Brothers at odds / Ex-dictator, Guatemalan bishop demonstrate how ..

Pope’s visit lifts hopes in troubled Guatemala

Justice in the Gerardi Case: But Terror Continues | NACLA

Mario Enrique Ríos Montt

Private prison investors set for giant windfall from Trump tax bill

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Prison firms that restructured as real estate investment trusts see substantial tax cut – more good news for those who benefit from increased incarceration

 – Photo: The Idaho correctional center, operated by CoreCivic. A CoreCivic spokesperson told the Guardian ‘there are far more pressing matters for Congress to pursue’ than the reit tax classifications. Photograph: Charlie Litchfield/AP

Individual investors in US private prisons are poised to collect their most lucrative earnings ever thanks to changes in the tax code signed by Donald Trump, continuing what has been a banner year for the industry since the 2016 election.

“It’s going to be great for the investors, banks and hedge funds that own shares in private prisons, and are dependent on increased incarceration and criminalization,” said Jamie Trinkle, campaign and research coordinator with the racial and economic justice coalition Enlace.

CoreCivic, formerly Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), and the GEO Group, which together own more than 80% of private prison beds in the US, both restructured as reits in 2013 after a private letter ruling by the Obama Administration IRS green-lit the change.

“This tax act is of unprecedented benefit for reit investors,” said David Miller, a tax partner at Proskauer Rose. “I think reits will explode in popularity as a result of this act.”

With dividends of more than $430m paid out by the two major private prison companies in 2017, in theory, prison investors could see an additional $50m in dividend earnings next year, thanks to the GOP legislation. The actual figure will be lower than that, however, as some proportion of those shares are owned by institutional investors which are taxed differently from individuals. The exact breakdown between the two is not available in public filings.

Even without the new lower tax rate, the reit classification was already a huge boon to the private prison industry. Before converting to a reit in 2013, Corecivic was subject to a 36% corporate tax rate. After the reorganization, it reported paying an effective tax rate in the first quarter of 2015 of just 3%.

Lauren-Brooke Eisen, an attorney at the Brennan Center for Justice, said: “The way they are able to get away with that, is that they’re not allowed to keep a lot of cash on hand, they have to give it back to investors though dividends. But it allows them to have an incredibly low tax rate.”

According to Eisen, prison companies have essentially argued that renting out cells to the government is the equivalent of charging a tenant rent, thus making such business primarily a real estate venture. In her new book, ‘Inside Private Prisons – An American Dilemma in the Age of Mass Incarceration,’ Eisen examines the way this classification has boosted industry earnings.

Oregon Democratic senator Ron Wyden, a ranking member on the finance committee, has called the use of the reit structure by prisons “unfair” and “unjust.” In 2016, after being pressed by Enlace, he introduced legislation to end such practices. The bill was reintroduced this year but it has yet to make it out of committee and is not likely to do so any time soon.

A CoreCivic representative said that, in their view, “there are far more pressing matters for Congress to pursue” than the reit tax classifications. The Geo Group added they are “treated exactly the same as other real estate investment trusts without any special tax treatments or loopholes.” The point that activists make, though, is that treating prisons as real estate is a loophole.

A dramatic shift

Sixteen months ago, the outlook for private prisons seemed bleak: that was when the Obama Department of Justice announced it was phasing out their use. That announcement followed the release of a scathing government report, which concluded that private facilities were less safe than government-run ones.

The announcement only applied to the 18% of federal prisoners held in private facilities, not the 8% of state prisoners or 65% of immigration detainees held in private facilities. But it still signaled serious trouble. Corecivic and the Geo Group saw their stock prices plummet by about half and trading remained cratered until Trump’s surprise election victory.

By February, Trump’s first full month in office, it had become clear that the new administration would discontinue Obama’s efforts to shrink the size of the US prison population. One of Jeff Sessions’ first acts as attorney general was to undo the DoJ directive phasing out private prisons. That month the two companies each reached two-year stock highs.

The tax bill gift to private prison investors mirrors the cosy relationship Trump has had with the industry overall. After years elsewhere, in 2017 the Geo Group hosted its annual leadership conference at the Trump National Doral golf club in Miami. The company also gave nearly half a million dollars to Trump through his inauguration committee and Super Pacs. Shortly thereafter, it secured the administration’s first contract for an immigration detention center, a deal potentially worth millions.

Despite all that momentum, though, Jamie Trinkle at Enlace still sees a potential for organizers to stem the resurgence of private prisons. Divestment campaigns have successfully pulled more than $4bn out of banks (principally Wells Fargo) and other organizations that invest in the industry.

“Since the tax benefit goes directly to the investors, I think the divestment work actually becomes more important as a way to fight back and stop the flow of capital,” Trinkle said.

 

 

 

 

 

Resources/Related:

Private Prison Company Geo Group Gave Generously to Trump and …

Private prison companies are saying Trump’s … – Business Insider

GEO Group

GEO Group, Private Prison Industry Profits Soar Under Trump

Supreme Court Rules Against GEO Group and CoreCivic Secrecy ..

Private prisons boom in Texas and across America under Trump’s .

Why Deutsche Bank Prefers CoreCivic (CXW) Over GEO Group …

Corrections Corporation vs. GEO Group: Which Prison Stock Should …

Trump tax plan

DoJ directive phasing out private prisons

The Basics Of REIT Taxation

Taxes & REIT Investment | NAREIT – REIT.com

2016 Instructions for Form 1120-REIT – IRS.gov

SEC.gov | Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITS)

Modern REITs and the Corporate Tax – University of Chicago Law …

CoreCivic

The Corrections Corporation of America, by the Numbers

Corrections Corporation of America

CoreCivic (formerly CCA) | Texas Prison Bid’ness

Inside Private Prisons – An American Dilemma in the Age of Mass Incarceration

Lauren-Brooke Eisen: Inside Private Prisons | Brennan Center for Justice

Inside Private Prisons – NYU

The GOP tax plan means millions in e

 

Mercury Retrograde: Making our way through the fog

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JANUARY and FEBRUARY 2018

SECTION 1: Making our way through the fog One of the things that has been very challenging for many people living in the USA in 2016 and 2017 is the unreal/surreal quality of the political atmosphere and ongoing developments in our country. This is true no matter where we stand on the political spectrum. Our personal feeling of who we are as a country (which used to feel pretty solid) now feels like it is wavering and dissolving. Traditions and leaders we counted on before are unstable or missing in action. Uncertainty and doubts are all around us. The epithet of “fake news” is hurled at us from all directions. Things seem murky with no clear answers. It feels like we are enveloped in fog. We can’t see what’s coming or even where we are at the moment. Who and what can we believe and what we can do about it seems baffling. We see no clear cut answers.

If we look at the USA’s birth chart, we find there are some current patterns that can help us understand the nature of the energies around us at this time. As a country we are continuously experiencing a variety of energies, but the particular feeling of dissolving foundations, doubts and fogginess are the domain of Neptune. Every energy has an “in balance” and “out of balance” side. When in balance, Neptune is uplifting and inspirational. It represents our ideals, our spiritual beliefs, and our connection to the collective and to other dimensions. It supplies us with creativity, compassion and empathy. It also has a “magical” quality, which can be exhilarating, but also illusionary.

Neptune energy is illusive. It rules dreams and imagination, and much like trying to remembering our dreams when we awaken, what we want can evaporate when we try too hard to capture it. Neptune’s energies used in their highest form can bring spiritual and mystical purity, dedication to the higher good, deep compassion, empathy and a strong connection to higher dimensions. Although it seems ethereal and delicate, it is very powerful.

When Neptune’s energies are out of balance, several things can happen. The lofty heights of Neptune can be hard to attain in this less than perfect world. Neptune’s gifts of sensitivity, empathy, intuition and imagination can be overwhelming for some people. The resulting confusion, disillusionment and depression can bring a desire to escape from harsh reality through drugs, alcohol, and withdrawal from others by mentally checking out. Too much of Neptune’s idealism can bring impracticality and unrealistic expectations.

A lack of grounding and common sense results in confusion, mental fuzziness and constant problems dealing with everyday realities. A Neptune imbalance can result in repeatedly getting into situations where one either feels victimized or ends up sacrificing their own needs by trying to save someone else.

Neptune out of balance can also be the consummate con man; using the ability to intuit what people desire and then pulling them into shady deals or worse by playing on their emotions. Neptune out of balance can also result in a form of “spiritual intoxication” -the delusional true believer, someone willing to blow themselves up for their spiritual beliefs. Neptune is a powerful energy both in balance and out of balance. CLICK HERE for longer article on Neptune.

Transiting Neptune takes 184 years to orbit the Sun and spends about 14 years in each sign. Neptune is currently transiting the sign of Pisces. It entered in 2011 and will stay until January 2026. Neptune rules Pisces, so it is in its own sign and that strengthens it. When transiting Neptune makes a conjunction, square or opposition to a birth chart it is called a “hard aspect.” A hard aspect from Neptune is often initially experienced as a loss of a stable foundation, a feeling of tiredness, low energy, being wiped out. We may want to be spiritual and commune with our higher self, but when we try, we just fall asleep. We may feel swamped. It’s hard to get going. We feel unfocused and ungrounded. No clear direction or motivation. The good news is, through this process we will discover that some of the things we have been relying on or believing in are not what we thought they were. This is disillusioning, but can also be liberating. So how is Neptune currently affecting the USA birth chart? For purposes of this article, we will consider three main patterns:

(1) From April 2016 to mid-January 2019, transiting Neptune in Pisces trines (easy aspect) the USA Sun at 13 degrees Cancer. A trine indicates a time of positive potential for harmony and plenty, and also a period when we are “harvesting” the fruits of our labors. We see the results of the seeds we have planted. Usually this would be a pleasant time of plenty and relaxation. There must be some other things going on and there are. See below.

(2) From April 2016 to February 2018, transiting Neptune in Pisces squares (hard aspect) the USA Ascendant in Sagittarius. The Ascendant is how we are seen by others and represents our outer appearance and personality and the face we present to the world. The USA ascendant in Sagittarius makes our country’s face to the world one of optimism, generosity and expansiveness. We would be known for high principles, strong belief systems, openness and a love of adventure, travel and education. The square from transiting Neptune to the USA ascendant during this period obscures the image of our country. It makes it hard for others to see us clearly and it also makes us start doubting ourselves. Our outer “personality” as a country seems to be wavering, unclear and inconsistent, not only to other countries, but even to us. This is an aspect that makes us feel disoriented and unsure where our country is headed.

Note: I am using July 4, 1776, 5:10 pm, Philadelphia, PA. as the USA birth time as is known as the “Sibley” chart. The birth time determines the Ascendant. Other birth times are also used for the USA chart, but I prefer to use the Sibley chart.

(3) But wait, there’s more. In astrology there are predictive techniques called progressions and directions which are used for predicting and timing events and are based on the age of the person or entity. The Solar Arc direction technique moves all the planets in the chart forward approximately 1 degree for every year of life. The USA turned 240 years old in 2016. Using solar arc directions for the USA chart, we find that from April 2016 to February 2020 Neptune forms a powerful four year pattern with USA solar arc chart. The United States was born on July 4, 1776. The Sun in the USA’s birth chart forms a square (challenge) with Saturn. In a county’s chart the Sun represents the national character, the heart of the country and the head authority- the president, prime minister, monarch, etc. Saturn represents the system of government, laws, rules and regulations.

The Sun squaring Saturn in the USA birth chart indicates the president will be curtailed by laws, rules, and regulations. This square reflects the checks and balances in our three branches of government in the USA Constitution – legislative, executive and judicial. The USA Solar Arc Sun is at 12 to 14 degrees Pisces from April 2016 to Feb 2019 – just where Transiting Neptune will be during that period. That means transiting Neptune is conjuncting the USA Solar Arc Sun. The Sun represents our essence – who we really are at heart. This indicates our country having a major time of soul searching.

Since the Sun in the USA birth chart is squared by Saturn, transiting Neptune not only will conjunct the Solar Arc USA Sun, it will also square the USA Solar Arc Saturn. This indicates a period of questioning and stresses in our system of government. Am I cheering you up yet? It’s not fun, but it is important to remember we are likely feeling overwhelmed and things really aren’t as bad as they seem. We aren’t as powerless as we may feel. We need to be look realistically at these energies and realize what we are dealing with and how long it will last. The square to the USA ascendant is basically over, which means we are starting to feel a little more grounded and are shaking off the fuzzy mental fog.

Neptune will still conjunct the solar arc Sun and Square solar Arc Saturn off and on until February 2020. Sorry. Wish it would end sooner, but that’s the way it is and we can handle it. Understanding the nature of the energy is very helpful. We will probably come to realize later that we needed this time of soul searching and we are better for it.

SECTION 2: The Capricorn Connection

2018 and 2019 will be a time of finishing up old ways, letting go, cleaning up the debris and getting ready for some powerful new cycles to start in 2020. The energies of the sign of Capricorn will be a prominent influence in these activities. Pluto in Capricorn

To understand why this is such a time of transformation we need to look at the slow and powerful effects of Pluto. Pluto takes about 249 years to make one complete orbit around the Sun. During that period it passes through all 12 signs. Pluto represents power, transformation, that which is hidden below the surface, secrets, death, rebirth, deep psychological energies, intensity, extremes, covert activities, release, breakdowns, atomic energy, the masses, regeneration renovation and renewal. Pluto’s power can be a very seductive energy and we see it misused constantly throughout history. When the Plutonian energies are out of balance they are destructive, obsessive, compulsive, power hungry, secretive, criminal, abusive, intimating, dangerous and manipulative.

When these Plutonian energies are in balance we are able to handle power productively and wisely. It gives us the ability to get through intense times of endings and to be able to rise again in a new form. The sign that Pluto is in tells us the areas in which transformation is likely to occur. Pluto has been in the sign of Capricorn since 2008 and will stay until 2024. During this 16 year period we can expect worldwide transformation in those things ruled by Capricorn which are:

  • Structures, governments, institutions
  • The order and organization of how things are done
  • Authorities, business, our concept of reality
  • History and tradition
  • So, pretty much how everything is set up

Pluto is a little more than halfway through Capricorn right now. The sign of Capricorn will figure prominently in the new cycles coming in 2020. We can see its effects easily since 2008. Many Plutonian activities are bubbling up to the surface. Right now it is especially relevant since Pluto definitely rules the issue of ABUSE OF POWER. We are just seeing the tip of the iceberg. CLICK HERE to read the full article “Pluto in Capricorn 2008-2024: World Forecast”

Saturn in Capricorn Saturn moves into the sign of Capricorn on December 19, 2017 and stays until December 15, 2020. (Briefly in Aquarius from March 21 to July 1, 2020) Saturn rules the sign of Capricorn, so it’s like a double dose of the same energy. See things ruled by Capricorn directly above. Saturn in Capricorn will make us focus on reality. It is a no nonsense, down to business, quit messing around energy. Saturn in Capricorn wants to get things done, but is also very concerned with doing it the right way. Honor and integrity are valued. It brings focus, organization, practicality, discipline, ambition and a desire for achievement. If this energy becomes out of balance, it can result in an over emphasis on authority, rules and regulations.

Saturn and Pluto are going to conjunct in Capricorn on January 12, 2020. (be at the same degree) This is one of the major cycles that will be occurring in 2020. Even though the conjunction isn’t until 2020, as soon as Saturn moves into Capricorn in December 2017, there is likely to be a noticeable shift in energies. Saturn and Pluto conjunct every 33 to 38 years. No matter in what sign the conjunction occurs, the results have a lot to do with power and control – as in who has it and who doesn’t. Since the 2020 conjunction occurs in Capricorn, which really likes to be in charge, we could surmise that there are going to be major worldwide power struggles as we approach and move into 2020. When Saturn enters Capricorn on December 19, 2017, it will be half a sign away from Pluto, but like a spider sitting in its web, Pluto will know someone has entered its domain. In 2018 and 2019 power issues will be developing that will reach a peak in 2020.

General Forecast for December 2017, January and February 2018

New Moon and Full Moon CLICK HERE for more information on the meaning of: New Moon, Full Moon, Eclipses, SuperMoon and SuperMoon X. But first a word about Mercury….. As we start the month of December 2017, Mercury, planet of communication, is standing still as it prepares to go retrograde from December 3 to December 22, 2017 at 29 to 13 ° Sagittarius. In astrology the planet Mercury is associated with the mind, the nervous system, speaking, learning, thinking, reasoning, memory, education, reading, information, communications, technology, transportation, travel, commerce activities, buying and selling. About three times a year from our perspective here on Earth, Mercury appears to slow down, stop, and then start to move backward and retrace its path in the sky. (It isn’t actually moving backwards, it just looks that way to us.) This apparent backward motion continues for about three weeks. During this period, we say Mercury is Retrograde (Rx). Then Mercury once again slows down, stops and resumes its forward movement, which is described as Mercury going Direct (Dir). What to do when Mercury is Retrograde When Mercury is retrograde it is time to pause and go back over things rather than begin something brand new. Be alert in all forms of communication, transportation, travel and mental activities. It does not mean that everything will get mixed up, but there is a tendency for that to happen if we don’t pay attention. We need to be more aware and not take things for granted.

Misunderstandings, miscalculations, mistakes, lost messages and delays can occur more easily. Things started now may need to be redone later. Be clear in all communications and double-check your information. Don’t assume that others perceive the situation in the same way as you do. Stay flexible and be prepared for some surprises. You may find out that something you thought would turn out one way ends up being totally different than you expected.

Mechanical and technological devices like your vehicle or your computer may be a little wacky or need repairs. Large systems involving communication, transportation and commerce may experience breakdowns or delays. However, it doesn’t mean all travel, technology and communications are affected, just that it is more likely now. Don’t take anything for granted. Drive cautiously. If you must sign something, be sure to read the fine print and verify that everyone understands and agrees on the terms. As long as you are clear and careful, you will be fine.

Mercury retrograde has a good side. When Mercury is retrograde we have a chance to pause and catch up. It is time to stop and look around at our lives. To see what needs to be finished, repaired, researched, revised or reevaluated. It is also a good time for cleaning, sorting, organizing and clearing out. It can be a serendipitous time, too, when fun, surprising and exciting events happen. Special Note to those born under the sign of Gemini and Virgo: Mercury is your ruling planet and you are especially attuned to its retrograde phases. Slow down and take your time. You may find this to be a time of inner realizations.

Timing

While Mercury is retrograde we may end up going back to correct communications or activities that began during the three weeks before Mercury turned retrograde. (In this case, November 14, 2017) It also can take up to three weeks after the retrograde phase ends (until January 12, 2018) to tie up all the loose ends of the retrograde phase. The effects of Mercury Retrograde seem to be extra strong four days before the retrograde phase begins (Nov 29-Dec 2, 2017) and just after it ends (Dec 23-26, 2017). Things can be quite unsettled during these periods. We are heading into a significant Mercury retrograde cycle. Mercury in Sagittarius is a fiery energy and exuberant energy. It can lead us to get so excited we speak or act without thinking things through. Open mouth insert foot. This same tendency can also result in scattering our energy. Maintaining focus will be very helpful. If we look at the news of the past few days in November, we can already see events that are vying for the grand prize of being the biggest Mercury retrograde mix-up in December.

DECEMBER 1-16, 2017

Full Moon, December 3, 2017 The waning Moon cycle begins (the 14 days from the Full Moon to next New Moon). At this Full Moon we reach a culmination and start harvesting the results of intentions and actions started at previous New Moon on November 18, 2017. Dec 3: Mercury goes retrograde at 12:34 am. Dec 3: FULL MOON/SUPERMOON in Gemini, 12°, at 8:47 am (MST) This Full Moon occurs in the muddle of a five day period (Nov 30 to Dec 4) when the energies are an interesting and busy mix of impatience, impulsiveness, assertiveness, surprises, optimism, idealism, secrets and possible confusion. Something serious may come to light that must be addressed.

Drive carefully and avoid arguments. Be advised that things may not be what they seem at first. Wait a few days and see what happens. Dec 5-8: Interesting developments could occur at this time pertaining to activities that occurred over the previous four days. We may be dealing with something that requires caution, responsibility and careful thinking. A serious effort to accomplish our goals gets a boost of energy. Activities that are organized and carefully done will survive the scrutiny that can occur at this time. Progress can be made. Trying to cut corners and fly by the seat of our pants is likely to result in a crash landing.

Dec 9: Mars moves into Scorpio and will stay through Jan 25. This almost seven week period will be a good time to tackle something that needs to be purged or transformed. It would also be a good time for detective work. We will have the ability to dig beneath the surface without being afraid of what we may find. Dec 9-11: Some unexpected twists and turns could occur. Fun and excitement on Dec 10 is likely to take a serious and somber turn on Dec 11.

Dec 12: A good time to get together with others. People are likely to be supportive and friendly during the day, but the evening could be full of surprises. Dec 13-14: the focus will be on getting things done. This an especially favorable time to utilize the Mars in Scorpio energy mentioned on Dec 9 above. Dec 15-16: There could be some surprises. Be open to doing something different and unusual.

DECEMBER 17-31, 2017 New Moon, December 17, 2017 The waxing Moon cycle begins (the 14 days from New Moon to next Full Moon). At the New Moon we set our intentions and take action; seeds are planted and start growing.

Dec 17: NEW MOON in Sagittarius, 27°, at 11:30 pm (MST) People will be feeling exuberant, full of energy with high hopes for the future. This would be a good time to think about what we want to change and how to improve our lives, and then set our intentions. However, we still need to keep our feet on the ground as there is also a chance of going overboard and getting carried away. We may see some in authority attempting to expand their power.

Dec 19: Saturn moves into Capricorn. (This was discussed in Section 2, above.) Saturn’s entry into earthy and realistic Capricorn can bring some much needed common sense and grounding to the world. In our personal lives, we can expect to start finding out where we need to place our focus, get realistic, get to work and get organized. If you know your chart, look for the house that holds the sign of Capricorn and any planets, the Ascendant or Midheaven at 0 to 9 degrees of Capricorn, Cancer, Libra or Aries.

This is where Saturn will be casting a critical eye and letting you know what part of your life will require work, patience and discipline over the year ahead. Accept the necessity of this responsibility and do your best. It will pay off in the long run. Dec 20: The energies are entertaining and fun. Enjoy it now because tomorrow play time is over. The Winter Solstice occurs on Dec 21 as the Sun moves into Capricorn at 9:29 am and later conjuncts Saturn around mid-afternoon The Winter Solstice Sun conjuncting Saturn sets a serious tone for the next three months and emphasizes the energies of Saturn in Capricorn. It is time to get down to business and apply ourselves. A new phase is starting. Conversations can be meaningful and enjoyable that evening.

Dec 22-26: Mercury goes direct on Dec 22. The next few days could have some classic Mercury retrograde experiences, so stay alert. Dec 23-25 will be a pleasant time for friendship and being with those we love. Venus, the planet of love and enjoyment goes into Capricorn on Christmas Eve and conjuncts Saturn on Christmas day adding a somber note and prompting us to look at our relationships realistically. Whether this makes us deeply thankful or points out areas that need to be addressed, it is a time to think about the quality of love and enjoyment in our lives.

Dec 26-28: The energies lighten. Interesting and exciting discussions and ideas occur along with the urge to take practical actions that help others. Dec 29: Attend to everyday duties and practical matters. Dec 30-31: We may feel a bit scattered as we prepare for the countdown to a New Year. 2017 is ending. As I write this, I am hearing everyone saying, “Thank God!”

WELCOME 2018!

Jupiter in Scorpio truly is the next big thing in astrology! Jupiter magnifies whatever it touches and, wherever it’s transiting, you’ll feel it! It’s in Scorpio, a zodiac sign that knows how to get under your skin so get ready to feel alive!

People and events hit a raw nerve and make you sit up and pay attention. It’s a transformative, intense, gutsy time. Follow your instincts! Get ready for things and people that are dark, taboo, extreme to burst into the scene. Scorpio exposes people’s dark side, secrets, scandals and monstrosities. It’s all or nothing with Scorpio so be very prepared! Scorpio teaches us this is a time of thriving, learning and growing through crisis and intensity!

Get ready to burst onto the scene, dear Scorpio! You’re a man / woman with a mission and your personal magnetism is off the charts! How could anyone refuse you? Jupiter in your sign is one of the luckiest times of your life and it only comes around every twelve years. Anything you touch right now expands! In years to come, you will look back at this period and see that it was the beginning of your new life. And you can shape it, right here, right now. The time is now

It really is a new year in more ways than just the date. January starts the year out with a Full Moon/SuperMoon X, Uranus going direct (described below) and also a month long aspect of Jupiter in Scorpio sextile Pluto in Capricorn. This sextile is a positive aspect that will be exact on January 15, 2018, but will be in effect for the entire month of January. It is an energy that can help us feel optimistic and ready to make major improvements in our lives. Our New Year resolutions have a good chance of actually happening. It won’t happen without effort and will require a willingness to really transform. It can happen if we focus our hearts and minds on what we do want to happen, and then be courageous enough to make it so.

JANUARY 1-15, 2018

Wolf Moon

Full Moon, January 1, 2018 The waning Moon cycle begins (the 14 days from the Full Moon to next New Moon). At this Full Moon we reach a culmination and start harvesting the results of intentions and actions started at previous New Moon on December 17, 2017. Jan 1: FULL MOON/SUPERMOON X in Cancer, 12°, 7:24 pm (MST) This Full Moon is conjunct the USA’s Sun at 13° Cancer. SuperMoon X means that this full moon will be extra close to the earth and we will feel its energies more strongly.

Full Moons are a time of climax and of awareness. This should be a strong start for the new year. Whatever is reaching a culmination around this time is likely to be significant for the United States. There are several energies that suggest positive developments, especially regarding women and the general well being of the country. This should also give most people a lift in spirits and a willingness to be more compassionate and understanding of others. Aspects at the Full Moon: Sun conj Venus; Sun and Venus sextile Mars; Moon, Mars, Jupiter and Neptune in grand trine in water signs.

Jan 2: There may be some surprises because Uranus, the wake-up and shake up planet, goes direct, which means its energies of change will be very concentrated the first week of January. Activities that have been happening behind the scenes since August 2017 could start to be revealed over the month of January and they could be surprising, even shocking. Expect the unexpected. Jan 3-11: During this period there are many positive patterns forming that will enhance the Jupiter sextile Pluto aspect that is occurring all month. The energies will be supportive for those who want to transform their lives, whether in a small or a big way.

The most active and positive days will be Jan 3, 4, 6, 8, 9 and 11. Quit thinking and start doing. Jan 12: Mercury conjuncts Saturn in Capricorn suggesting a time of serious thinking and facing reality. This could be a definitive moment of sorts. Something is dotting all the i’s and crossing all the t’s. This is likely to carry over to Jan 13. J

an13-14: Uranus is squared by Venus and the Sun which is likely to upset our best laid plans due to the unexpected. If you want to do something peaceful and organized, don’t pick this weekend. Jan 15: A new week begins and we want to get back on track with our plans, however, be prepared for some bumps as the week progresses.

JANUARY 16-30

Image result for New Moon in Capricorn, January 16, 2018

New Moon, January 16, 2018 The waxing Moon cycle begins (the 14 days from New Moon to next Full Moon). At the New Moon we set our intentions and take action; seeds are planted and start growing. Jan 16: NEW MOON in Capricorn, 27 °, at 7:17 pm (MST) Capricorn is all about getting things done and we may feel the urge to make something happen. However, unexpected conditions on Jan 17-19 may necessitate an adjustment in our plans. It could have something to do with events over the previous weekend. There could be concerns with cyber security in the world.

The US could experience some economic challenges and unstable conditions. It’s a good idea to proceed with caution when making important decisions at this time. This is especially true because the coming Full Moon on Jan 31 (the culmination of what is started now) will be a SuperMoon and a Lunar Eclipse, indicating a time of shifts and instability. We can use the Jan 16 New Moon to clarify what we love and value in life and wait for a more stable time to start a new project. Jan 20-21: The energies are compassionate and sensitive. We will desire peace and harmony and will seek to help others in practical ways. Jan 22-23: This could be a fast paced and assertive time. Getting along with others may present some challenges on Jan 23. Jan 24-25: New information could be revealed that is enlightening and helps us see something we may have missed earlier. J

an 26: Mars, planet of action and energy, moves into Sagittarius where it will stay until March 16. During this period will tend to feel fired up about our future and more adventurous than usual. Jan 27-28: Things could be quite busy this weekend with lots of comings and goings. It will be easy to start moving and talking too fast and to do or to say something we regret later. Slow down and focus on the present moment. Jan 29-30: The general mood is more emotional, sensitive and sentimental. We may prefer to stay home rather than go out.

JANUARY 31 – FEBRUARY 14

Image result for Full Moon, January 31, 2018

Full Moon, January 31, 2018 The waning Moon cycle begins (the 14 days from the Full Moon to next New Moon). At this Full Moon we reach a culmination and start harvesting the results of intentions and actions started at previous New Moon on January 16, 2018. Jan 31: FULL MOON/ Supermoon/Lunar Eclipse in Leo, 12°, 6:27 am (MST) This is also called a “Blue Moon” because it is the second Full Moon this month. There is almost a mystical or fated quality to this Lunar Eclipse. Maybe there will be something we are all experiencing collectively. Relationships will also be important right now. We might see our current relationship in a new light or meet someone we feel we knew in a past life. We could have some spiritual insights or interesting dreams.

Since this is a Lunar Eclipse, our shifts and changes will be inner and hard to pinpoint, but even so could quietly end up shifting our direction. (The Sun conjunct South Node and Venus and the Moon conjunct North Node) This will be especially strong if you are an Aquarian born Jan 29 to Feb 2, or a Leo born Aug 1 to 5. If you know your chart, look for the houses that hold 12 degrees of Leo and Aquarius, this is where you may experience a shift over the next 3 to 6 months. Also look for any planets, the Ascendant or Midheaven at 10-14 degrees Leo, Aquarius, Taurus or Scorpio. These parts of your chart could also experience shifting circumstances.

Feb 1-2: A good time to focus on practical everyday matters and maintenance. Feb 3-4: An enjoyable weekend being with others. There could be a tendency to go overboard on fun or spending the evening of Feb 3. Do something you love and enjoy on Feb 4, preferably with a friend or companion. Feb 5-7: Feb 6 would be a good day to do something social that is spur of the moment or different. It’s a time to have fun and maybe a little romance. Feb 7 has some interesting energies that make us aware of power and how to handle it wisely.

Feb 8-9: The open road may beckon. Try to make some time to get out in the wide open spaces. Philosophical conversations about the meaning of life may also be enjoyable. Feb 10: The energies are expansive, generous and confident. This should be a nice time for social occasions. We just need to be sure our enthusiasm for largesse matches our bank account. Feb 11-12: Back to practical matters and planning how to improve our lives. Feb 13-14: Opportunities for making some positive changes in our lives could arise. Time to take a chance and change our routine, take a new route, do things in a new order, or better yet, do something we’ve never done before. The key is to open ourselves to new perspectives and possibilities.

FEBRUARY 15-28

Image result for NEW MOON/Solar Eclipse in Aquarius,February 15, 2018

New Moon, February 15, 2018 The waxing Moon cycle begins (the 14 days from New Moon to next Full Moon). We set our intentions and take action; seeds are planted and start growing. Feb 15: NEW MOON/Solar Eclipse in Aquarius, 27 °, 2:05 pm (MST) The energies of this New Moon are focused on equality, humanitarian concerns, science and hopes for the future. Mercury is conjunct the Sun and Moon indicating these issues are likely to be major topics of conversation in the world at this time. Mercury is also sextile Uranus, which suggests we could receive surprising new information that is both pleasant and liberating.

It is possible that exciting scientific discoveries or new inventions could be revealed. (Or they might be discovered at this time and revealed later this year.) Venus is sextile Saturn, adding a desire for fairness and doing what is right. All of these energies point to beneficial changes and shifts, even if they take awhile to fully manifest.

This Solar Eclipse will conjunct the USA Moon. The Moon in a country’s chart represents the general public and public opinion. It is particularly is associated with women and how they are treated. It also rules families, communities, food and security. These are the areas where the shift is likely to occur in the USA. Judging by the aspects, it should a positive change. Whatever starts now could lead to a major shift in public opinion over the next 6 months to a year.

Feb 16-18: We will need the positive energies of the New Moon to deal with some challenges over the weekend. Mars, planet of action, will square Neptune which can manifest as misguided, or even nefarious, actions. Some may have to face the consequences of past dubious actions. Whatever we do, this is a very bad time to take any actions that are in any way questionable. This aspect can also manifest as doubt or low energy and a lack of motivation. We may not see this in our personal lives, but it could be reflected in the outer world.

Neptune is conjuncting the USA’s solar arc Sun so the Mars square Neptune aspect listed above will activate the conditions discussed in Section 1: making our way through the fog. We will have the positive energies of the New Moon to help us. How the energies manifest in the USA over this weekend will be interesting. With Neptune involved, it will be best to take a wait and see attitude before coming to any conclusions. There are likely to be further developments at the next Full Moon on March 1.

Feb 19-28: The rest of the month is quieter. Feb 20-21 could be stabilizing and uplifting. This will be a good time work with others for practical goals. Real progress can be made by combining empathy, patience, realistic expectations, discipline and focus. Feb 22: Information that is shocking or exciting could be revealed. Feb 23 may present a series of obstacles throughout the day that could be frustrating. Energies are likely to be scattered and unfocused. Not the best time for a social gathering or for trying to get people to agree on a course of action. Feb 24-25: A pleasant weekend, especially on Feb 25, which will be a good time to enjoy time with those you love.

Feb 26-28: There could be a further surprising development related to information or activities that occurred around Feb 22. The transformative power of love and the spoken word will be strong. It will be wise to take a breath and think before we speak or take hasty actions. At the end of the day on Feb 28 we could reach a deeper understanding of ourselves and others. Happy New Years and a much Love to you in 2018!                   Resources:Related: Quarterly Forecast

2018 Mercury Retrograde Calendar – Astrology

Lunar & Solar Eclipse Energy – 2018 – Universal Life Tools

Full Moon SUPERMOON – January 1/2, 2018 – Universal Life Tools

Energy – SuperMoons & MicroMoons 2018 – Universal Life Tools

Blue Moons & Black Moons – 2018 – Universal Life Tools

2018: Numerology – Universal 11 Year Energy – Universal Life Tools

solar eclipse energy

JUDY JOYCE ASTROLOGY

Shift Frequency

 

NYU Professor Uses Tenure to Advance 9/11 Hoax Theory: The school says he’s entitled to his views

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– Photo: A protestor holds a sign claiming the 11 September 2001 attacks on the US were an inside job near the White House in Washington 11 September 2007.

If there’s one phrase that really bothers NYU Professor of Media Studies Mark Crispin Miller, it’s conspiracy theory.” The outspoken voice of public dissent considers it a “meme” used to discredit people engaged in really necessary kinds of investigation and inquiry.”

For Miller, those investigations include, among others: did the U.S. government have foreknowledge of the 9/11 terror attacks and choose to do nothing? Were Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and others surreptitiously trying to dismantle the republic envisioned by the founding fathers? And is the CDC concealing links between the MMR vaccine and autism? “It’s one that you run into time and time again,” Miller said. “To the point that I now believe that anyone who uses that phrase in a pejorative sense is a witting or unwitting CIA asset.”

With representatives at the highest levels of government attacking traditional sources of information and even the concept of objective facts, Miller, a tenured professor in NYU Steinhardt School, displays a similar level of skepticism towards well-established narratives and the people who support them. In an age in which the empirical is under threat, what responsibility does NYU have to ensure that facts still matter in the classroom?

Miller is open about his fringe theories in his classes. In September, he invited undergraduate students in the course “Mass Persuasion and Propaganda” to attend the Justice in Focus conference on the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. According to the event website, the gathering sought to chart “a path toward exposing the truth and obtaining justice for the attacks that killed nearly 3,000 innocent victims and that continue to serve as the pretext for the Global War on Terrorism.” Miller delivered opening remarks. “9/11 was a crime against humanity,” he said to the crowd. “And we frankly don’t believe the government’s conspiracy theory of how that happened.”

When asked about his decision to invite students to the event, Miller said he hoped it would be educational. “Any students interested in that subject could learn something at that conference that they wouldn’t get elsewhere,” he wrote. “Or from the media coverage (such as it was).” Students of Miller’s said their fellow classmates were generally respectful of his views and rarely disagreed openly in class. “People spoke up to contribute other conspiracy theories,” said Lyla Hurley, a recent graduate who took Miller’s course “The Culture Industries” in 2016. When initially contacted, Miller was wary of being interviewed. He believed I intended to get him fired because I had concurrently contacted some of his colleagues asking for comment. In declining an interview request, he also referenced a disparaging September 12 article in Vice entitled “9/11 ‘truthers’ vow to never, ever forget.” “Vice specializes in attacking 9/11 heretics,” he wrote to me. “I assume your hit-piece was meant for them.” Later he responded to some of my prompts via email. Professor Rodney Benson, Miller’s departmental chair responded in writing.

“As a scholar of the university, Mark, like all academics, is entitled to his own views, whether or not they are shared by the larger NYU community,” he wrote. “There is really nothing more to say.”

But is that really where the conversation begins and ends? Miller has not always been associated with extreme views. He’s had a long and varied career as a writer, turning his critical eye toward the George W. Bush administration (and every other modern administration), the scourge of corporate advertising, the U.S. election process, TV culture, American consumerism, and even his own university, NYU. In a popular 2001 book The Bush Dyslexicon he uses Bush’s many speech gaffes to reveal damning truths about the former president’s ideology and psychology.

The social commentator Christopher Lasch said of Miller’s television criticism that “his analysis…is original and highly instructive,” and Studs Terkel said of The Bush Dyslexicon that it will “give us heart and voice” in the face of a Bush presidency. Terkel also called it a “work of outrage.” Miller aspires to be a public intellectual in the European tradition and has been featured or has appeared in outlets including Harper’s, The New York Times, CNN, Frontline, and the Daily Show and most importantly for his work on ‘Forbidden Books: Unearthing Suppressed American History.’ 

Since 2005, however, after publishing two screeds against the Bush administration in which he alleged election theft via vote manipulation and suggested the possibility that the administration allowed the 9/11 attacks to occur in order to gain political advantage, Miller’s public appearances have waned. John Bautista, a 2016 NYU graduate, took Miller’s course during his sophomore year. “The class was taking it with a grain of salt,” he said of Miller’s views on 9/11. “He’s famous in the department for his 9/11 theories.” The class Mass Persuasion and Propaganda promises to teach students to think critically about political messaging delivered through channels ranging from campaign ads, presidential press conferences and “the media”—a term curiously placed in quotation marks in the syllabus. The word “information” also frequently receives distancing quotation marks when referring to the content of social media or television news.

A sample syllabus for The Culture Industries states that students are required to read the Times daily but with a critical stance: “One must get some sense of what’s not therei.e., those stories that the Times has deemed not ‘fit to print.’”

The publications Consortiumnews, AlterNet and Truthout are also required reading—but with no similar caveat. Some students were wholly receptive to Miller’s views. Lacy, who declined to provide her last name, was already distrustful of the mainstream 9/11 narrative before entering college and Miller reinforced her perspective. A pre-law senior at the time of our interview, she recalled watching 9/11 documentaries with her father, who, on one occasion, turned to her and said, “You know, jet fuel can’t melt steel beams.” Lacy said Miller was her favorite professor.

When asked about her classmates’ responses to his unconventional views, she said he was rarely refuted openly. “People asked a lot of questions,” she said, “but no student said, ‘You’re wrong.” Bautista shared some of Lacy’s positive impressions of Miller. “He was very rational about the way he shared his thoughts,” he said. “Whether or not you agreed with him, his opinions and how he formed them were fascinating.”

Alessia Miro, a recent graduate of the Steinhardt School, took Miller’s class during her sophomore year. “It was the one class that really made you think out of the box,” she said. Hurley, who recalls Miller describing a theory in class about “two guys across the bridge who watched the buildings burn,” gave a different explanation for her classmates’ deference. “I wouldn’t say anyone challenged him really,” she said. “But people want good grades so that may be why.” Hurley said that while many of her classmates loved Miller and were eager to express their admiration, she thought he lost credibility as the semester wore on. “He challenged literally everything,” she said, adding it got “kind of old after a while.”

Miller may be on the fringe when it comes to his views on 9/11, but he is certainly not alone. Accompanying him as signatories to the 2004 Truth Statement are former Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader, author and historian Howard Zinn (who later disavowed the notion that Bush had prior knowledge of the attacks), former six-term Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney and actress Janeane Garofalo. CNN commentator Van Jones also signed the statement but removed his name following a controversy. Studies have shown a significant portion of the American public is skeptical of the established narrative.

According to a 2006 public opinion poll conducted by the Scripps Survey Research Center, 36 percent of respondents thought it either “Very Likely” or “Somewhat Likely” that “people in the federal government either assisted in the 9/11 attacks or took no action to stop the attacks because they wanted the United States to go to war in the Middle East.” Simple as that From the same poll, 16 percent of respondents thought it either “Very Likely” or “Somewhat Likely” that “the collapse of the twin towers in New York was aided by explosives secretly planted in the two buildings.” Miller says he’s noticed students becoming increasingly receptive to fringe theories over the years. “I was delighted and heartened by their response,” he said after showing the 2016 film Vaxxed to his class. The film was removed from the Tribeca Film Festival for alleging a cover up of a link between the MMR vaccine and autism, a theory widely discredited by researchers and blamed for endangering the public by reducing vaccination rates.

“I have this experience every semester and have for the last several years. There’s been a real sea change in the way people think about issues that have always been successfully dismissed as crackpot stuff, always successfully dismissed as conspiracy theory,” he said in conversation with producer Del Bigtree in a video posted to Facebook. Miller may be onto something regarding his students: Studies have shown a growing distrust of mainstream institutions and information sources, particularly among young people.

In January 2017, the Economist cited the American public’s lack of trust in its own government in downgrading the U.S. to a “flawed Democracy,” writing the grade was due to “a continued erosion of trust in government and elected officials.” A 2015 Harvard University poll placed trust in the media among 18- to 29-year-olds at 12 percent, an improvement from the previous year. According to the study, young people trust the media less than Wall Street. The same poll showed trust in Congress at 17 percent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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