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New York, Friday, March 18, 2011

Chelsea (877) 453-8265
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With Love from Atlantis
Dear Friend of Planet Waves,

We are a full week into the ongoing disaster in Japan, which has evolved from natural catastrophe to one clearly made worse by the failing of human technology; or more accurately, by humanity's hubris overreaching our ethics.

This overreaching was the downfall of the fabled city of Atlantis, and Eric makes the connections between our society and theirs with startling clarity in this week's subscriber issue. Whether this mythical, archetypal city truly existed or was created by Plato as an intellectual metaphor, its lessons have endured in various incarnations for thousands of years -- including in the pre-history J.R.R. Tolkien created for The Lord of the Rings. The lesson keeps resurfacing; we understand it; but we seem to have made it our mission as a species not to learn it.

There is a difference. As a friend pointed out to me years ago after I lamented how the universe was making me learn the same lesson over and over in an unhealthy relationship, "Then you're not learning the lesson. You understand the lesson, but you haven't learned it yet. Understanding is the easy part."

And so here we find ourselves in the early years of the twenty-first century, still trying to learn the same  lesson the Atlaneans failed to learn: We do not yet possess sufficient ethics to handle our technology. We, as citizens of the world, have allowed our leaders to play with nuclear power unsupervised and have collectively turned a blind eye to how hot this fire is that they -- and by extension we -- have been playing with. The multiple failing reactors in Japan are not a 'terrible freak accident'; they are an inevitability that has always been in the background and will manifest again as long as we keep pretending it won't.

Eric mentioned in conversation this morning that "we are pushing the edge in a way that would even be weird for Atlantis." Yet we've been given an incredible moment in which to be alive on this planet. Our 'city' hasn't yet fallen into the sea; we have the opportunity to wake up all the way and learn the lesson. And 'learning the lesson' means taking action, not simply reading about the myth in all its present-day permutations.

To read more coverage of the unfolding events in Japan, check out the Planet Waves blog, where we've been updating regularly. Our readers have co-created a community whose members support each other in our efforts to wake up and get involved, and you're invited to take the first step with us. To jump-start your personal engine with Eric's full-length weekly articles and horoscopes, you can subscribe for three months here.

We're all here now; this situation is ours to deal with, not someone else's.

Yours & truly,
Amanda Painter

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