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Kingston, NY, Friday, September 11, 2009

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Becoming Wakeful and Willing
By Judith Gayle | Political Waves

In all things there is a necessary tension -- between being asleep and awake, for instance, there's a physical response that either gets you moving or eases you down into a dream state. When you lay your head on your pillow tonight, chart the tension as it releases itself from your frame; this is one of those I-didn't-notice-it-until-it-was-gone deals. When you wake up tomorrow morning, notice how every nerve in your body gathers itself for the day, sending signals to your muscles to propel you out of bed and fill you with its animating force. Tension is the game here in 3D. There's also tension between people, which I believe is primarily sexual; not overtly, in most cases, but a subtle thread of chemical recognition and social expectation. It defines attraction and, ultimately, human relationship. When we focus on something, tension brings all its power to bear on one point, moving a project forward to completion. Tension is an enormous creative power, if we recognize and appreciate it.

This is normal tension I'm describing, not stress; but then, nothing's been exactly normal for quite a while. Few of us have relaxed on the most basic levels for years, and consequently most of us are stressed up the wazoo. In very broad terms, I think of that tension that moves us along as chi, as Divine animation, as God/dess -- and the debilitating stress that we allow it to become as the Flip Side; we are either in cooperation with ourselves in producing our own good or in a constant state of self-sabotage and defeatism. I don't suppose I need to remind you that excess stress is a killer; our bodies aren't designed to deal with it in large quantities. It taxes our heart and erodes our immune system; it debilitates our nervous system and makes us snappish and jittery. It leaches out into our attitudes and behaviors in ugly ways.

So here's the thing about the kind of stress most of us are dealing with today -- it's all in our head. I mean, think about it; and if you do, all the variables for tension/stress come up on your touch-screen for you to select from. Without our mind mulling the options and projecting their possible result out into the future, our bodies would be at rest, quietly awaiting instruction. The simple truth is unless we're being charged by a rhino in some African veldt or the Sheriff is coming up the drive to serve foreclosure notice ... well, yes; there's that, for some of us ... actual stress is all about dwelling in an unhappy past while projecting a frightening future. Our most recent past, unfortunately, has created an underlying habit of anxiety that feeds our fears; and that's in our head, as well. We are assuredly not required to repeat any dismal patterns or perpetuate learning cycles, but that always demands our awareness, self-discipline and cooperation with Higher Self. The past announces the future -- but only if we let it.

The energetic backdrop for our current stressors is a doozy. We're moving into another of the Saturn/Uranus oppositions, initiated on election day; a few degrees out. That pits the conservative, conventional status quo against the innovation and necessary remediation of 'change we can believe in.' That division is more than obvious in our politics, gone completely absurd in this last week with school children in conservative states being kept from watching their President address them on academic issues lest he make 'Socialist zombies' of them. That internal tension will show up in our personal world, as well, and out-picture within a family unit, a workplace, any group. Be on the lookout for it, so you can tread softly. That's the flavor of the day -- and the Corporate Sponsor scooping up the ice cream, not to be forgotten, is Pluto in Capricorn. I'll get back to him in a bit, but it's best to remember he's not generous with his chocolate sprinkles and he'll demand payment upfront if you ask for seconds or perhaps your waistline will be assessed and denied as a pre-existing condition.

In this kind of deeply divided political moment, nose-to-nose with those who are fully committed to the defense of what is rather than what might be, we're all stressed up with nowhere to go; at this writing we're in something of an impasse, with the results of Obama's address on healthcare a hopeful but unknowable experiment. There is, despite all the hot air on the topic, very little he can do to sway the Republicans. It seems to me that they are lost in a vast projection that will not allow them to process any new information; in the 8 years that they were used and abused, marching in lock-step behind their Decider even as it began to dawn on them that ... as they were being lied to, losing their children to a euphemistic War on Terror, left to their dwindling pay-checks and scammed for their religious leanings ... all they were getting in return was embarrassment, scandal, explosive debt and ultimately, loss of power.

Now they're pissed and they've got no place to put that, unaccustomed as they are to acknowledging their own warts; that they're denying their own medical and financial wellbeing with their obstruction, along with that of their families, doesn't seem to faze them. That our yearly healthcare obligations make up the entirety of what we earn nationally doesn't seem to worry them; some 15% of GDP, and projected to skyrocket. They not only don't know that national healthcare would cost this Republic only half as much as did Bush's tax cuts for his wealthy friends in the business community -- and is a pittance compared to the ongoing drain of the vainglorious wars he started -- they don't care. They want a piece of Obama; he's the stranger in Stranger Danger, he's the one from an outlier tribe. He is -- and I don't think I have to explain this further -- not 'one of them.' Classic projection of the furiously disenchanted and disempowered; frightened that time, and the superiority that they've fancied theirs for generations, has passed them by.

That doesn't explain the obstruction of the Democrats to their own party, of course; that's a horse of a different color -- green. Nothing but money drives the Blue Dog Dems that have brought the healthcare process to a standstill; and their very conservative, pro-business leanings put them squarely on the Fat Cat train, laughing and waving, quietly pocketing big lobbying bucks for their campaigns. In fact, the most functional legislator in the appropriately named Gang of Six appears to be Republican Olympia Snowe, who is honestly attempting to hammer out some viable reforms; she does not, of course, support the Option. And neither do many of those who are already receiving their medical care from the government, despite the fact that those numbers are stunning. A few years ago the combined amount of Americans covered by Medicare, Medicaid, the VA and military, and federal employee plans put the government in position as the nation's primary health insurer. I'd expect those numbers are even more robust today. So much for that dreaded Government 'takeover' of healthcare that will snuff Grama. Of course, there is little logic driving this conversation; rather than face changes, the obstructers are happy with the Devil they know.

And speaking of that Inglorious Self, Mike Moore's new movie is out and the timing is perfect; it's called Capitalism: A Love Story, and it may have been shot and scripted by our irreverent, idealistic friend Mike, but it was written and produced by Pluto in Capricorn -- you knew he was lurking somewhere. To be sure, many of us have understood the issues of capitalism's excess for decades, but ... as with Sicko ... Moore has the ability to shift our attention to problems we seem collectively unable to string together into coherent issues. And where Sicko examined a mere symptom of unrestrained capitalism, informing our debate today; this new offering goes right to the crux of it. We are in a mighty battle between those who would define humanity as a demographic to exploit for profit, and those who find its essential value to be in our commonly held democratic values. Moore even gets in a number of points about how this system spits in the face of actual Christianity; be afraid, Christocrats! Be very afraid!

Mike doesn't mince words; he calls corporations 'evil.' Is mindless, faceless, exploitive power evil? Perhaps it is; perhaps that's exactly what evil looks like, a mundane, lower-level human construct. Lucifer took dominion in this planet, according to the mythology; it was his baby. He was a fallen Angel, the personification of the ego-mind, who wanted everything to be about 'me, me, me' rather than 'we, we, we' and, rightly, it seems, assessed the least-enlightened foibles of humankind as easy pickin's. But, like any habit, our perpetual self-interest, mindless acceptance of being led around by the nose with easy credit, ownership society blather and the 'chicken in every pot' promises of prosperity has put us to sleep to the toxic price we pay. Now we see it; now it has teeth. Or horns, whatever. The Devil we know is requiring his pound of flesh.

Just as Pluto in Sagittarius gave us the rise of dogma, religious zealotry and overly optimistic, risk-taking capitalism, Pluto's move into Capricorn will give us a good picture of corporations gone mad, defensive and aggressive. If you've already had a gut full, you'll be sad to learn we've just seen the tip of this iceberg; sorry, I know that wasn't the news you wanted. The cycles are designed as a wake-up call; this one is a pip and it's a blessing that Mike came along with a cartoon version so more of us can turn to get a good look at the zeitgeist. We're not so good at finding cause; we're better at assigning blame. Me'thinks Mr. Moore is a scruffy Angel in disguise.

As Obama pits his altruism against a social meme that runs on greenbacks, we are getting a good look at lobbying, big Pharma, hospital and medical complex excess, and most of all, the heartless, mundane and ... yes, evil ... greed of insurers. Looming behind this struggle is the backdrop of big banking and Wall Street that accepted the recent censures and penalties against them as easily as swatting a mosquito buzzing around their head; a nuisance, not a threat. They continue to repackage worthless property and rate it a best buy; they insist on rewarding one another with big sums of money as if it was their own and not leeched out of the pockets of the masses. This battle is just beginning to shape up. This is Profit vs. Commonwealth -- this is AmeriCo vs. America.

Even more potent than Obama's speech this week is the case being heard by the Supreme Court regarding the status of corporations as political voices. Citizens United, a conservative incorporated group, produced an anti-Hillary movie during the presidential campaign; it came under fire as improper use of campaign funding. In a rare move, the Supremes tabled this case last session in order to give it more time to develop, and they have taken it up again this week. The possibility that campaign restrictions could be taken off of corporations is frightening, indeed -- worse, Chief Justice John Roberts is the swing vote. Roberts, a Federalist ideologue, has come down on the side of business continually in his 4-year term. In this critical case, the precedent that keeps campaign financing in check could be overturned. Some see this as extraordinarily dangerous -- certainly, given what we know about the money game, it is worrisome. Corporate interests, and ours, are simply not the same, and we'll surely see some fireworks if unregulated corporate money is unleashed on our political world. I hope we've already integrated that reflection into our consciousness and choose something else; but if we haven't, then I'd suppose we'll have opportunity to see all that's wrong with it. We're good about providing ourselves what we need.

I have every confidence in our ability to navigate our path toward reclaiming this nation, providing the best for our neighbor as ourselves and turning from predators to stewards of this lovely planet. I know the Great Turning is on us and our every thought, word and action is creating tomorrow not just for ourselves but for every life form. How long will all this take? Oh my -- if you will pardon my candor, dearhearts, that is none of my business; nor yours. We play the parts we came to play ... like little Gods and Goddesses, frolicking in the sand, creating fabulous castles or kicking grit in one another's eyes ... striving to come to awareness of what is important while putting into perspective what isn't. As long as we are filled with Divine creative tension here on Terra, our everyday contribution IS life; our accomplishments are secondary to our experience of that and it is astounding, startling, joyous and fulfilling ... if we will only stop and notice. Don't let stress cloud your vision of life's loveliness.

The only folks who are completely tension-free on this planet are those dressed in their best and on display, with organ music piped in and weeping relatives in the front row. But stress? There are many ways to deal with that; we should keep these techniques at arm's length, when it all seems like it's too much and we need to get our shoulders back down from their tense spot up close to our ears. Go over to the Living Section at Huffington Post and find some articles to help you with your day or use the Search function to explore a topic; Huffy is a treasure trove of useful topics and well-known authors. There are many websites that send daily messages to encourage faith, others that help you problem-solve. Above all, remember that stress is too often a product of overactive imagination and projections; and that is yet another reason to watch your thought process.

To keep yourself from harm, be as kind to yourself, both physically and emotionally, as you can be -- eat well, rest deliberately, play music that soothes you, bypass confrontation if you can. Be encouraged to harness your thought-full-ness for yourself and the world around you; the more of your own life you are able to notice with tenderness, the more the world will conform to your newfound gentleness. As best you can, let tomorrow take care of itself and attend fully to the moment in which you find yourself. If you can afford to have some body work done, I do recommend it; massage, Reiki, kinesiology, whatever you are drawn to. Give yourself every opportunity to succeed in your marvelous humanness. Watch things that inspire you, like this; after a while, you'll find that almost everything inspires you. If you need to be reminded that every portion of this planet is connected, that you are a sentient part of a huge, invisible Love Story go here; it is proof that your thoughts are powerful, and so very needed by those who await them. If we are indeed capable of this, what can we not accomplish?

Coming back to the seriousness of our national challenge, that very connection to all things is what we can count on to take us forward. We think that we must control progress consciously; better, once we begin to understand our own desires and intentions, to allow the organic quality of progress its power. Corporations have been deemed, wittingly or un, as entities with the rights of a citizen -- but they are not conscious. They're a private, for-profit club to which we don't belong; they do nothing to contribute to the whole. But we are the creators here on Terra, and we can begin to create corporations consciously. For instance, Ben and Jerry's is a great example of a compassionate, contributing corporation. We can see to it that business conglomerates do not exploit or gather only unto themselves; we can make sure that our new corporations give back in balance with what they take, that they do not savage our planet or our health or our souls.

Government is not our enemy, it is the organizing medium through which a national community is served and protected; in the Bush years, we got a good look at America as unconscious corporate power. Now the old paradigm version of misappropriated power is dying away, and it's up to us to see that a new version replaces it; one drawn of, for and by the people. The creative tension that can explode that idea into manifestation is just a breath away, full of fresh ideas and heart understanding. As we approach this signature challenge, let's not allow stress to make it more frightening than it is; it is simply that which no longer works, and we know what to do with that -- replace it with a better, more progressive, model. If that is what we choose, then we must learn how to banish our stress and come into the rich fecundity of creative tension, ready to empower new dreams that love the nation and the planet back into wholeness.

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