The Open Dimension

Commentary on social issues; politics; religion and spirituality

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Location: Laguna Hills, California, United States

I am a semi-retired psychotherapist/psychiatric social worker and certified hypnotherapist. Originally a practicing attorney, I changed careers during the 1980's. My interests include history, constitutional law, Hindustani classical music, yoga, meditation and spirituality.

Friday, September 12, 2014

September 12, 2014, OpEdNews

Monsters' Endgame
By lila york

Who are these people, these monsters who rule the world - and what is their endgame. Are they mutants or is this just what humanity has devolved into. We call them psychopaths and sociopaths, but they are much lower on the scale of depravity

chessboard by By Hello32020 (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

All of us fully human people want the same thing -- to live in peace and create a better world for our children. Instead we have endured twenty years of gratuitous wars and grand theft, brought to us by Wall Street. We have stood still while voracious bankers and slimy politicians robbed us -- not only of our money, which could have raised our standard of living and bought us a sound infrastructure, education, healthcare-- but of our futures and our peace of mind. Twenty years of bogeyman fear tactics and false flag attacks and bombing whole nations into ruin and discord. Obama won a landmark election and had the chance to stop the satanic forces -- at least to slow them down. Instead he joined up.

Who are these people, these monsters who rule the world - and what is their endgame. Are they mutants or is this just what humanity has devolved into. We call them psychopaths and sociopaths, but they are much lower on the scale of depravity. They are obscenities, cancerous tumors, puss-filled boils on the face of humanity, cannibalizing the rest of us without regard or remorse. They have ripped morality, decency, conscience, and fairness from any role in human interaction or world affairs. They always win, because they are willing to annihilate whole populations and the natural earth for monetary gain, and we are not. They are our bankers and politicians, corporate owners and Wall Street gamblers -- Syphilis-ridden whores who auction themselves for privilege to any scum with a bag of coin. We know their names. I would list them but it would get me a visit from one of their contract killers, and I am not done yet. They no longer need our labor or our creativity. They have microchips to do their deeds. They see the world as a game board that is rigged in their favor. We fully human humans have no role or purpose, except as victims of their grand theft. There are too many of us on the planet anyway, and we should all be eliminated -- the sooner the better. Ebola, AIDS, SARS, depleted uranium, mercury, GMO pesticides, poisoned ground water, floods, droughts, nuclear radiation, rising oceans, melting glaciers - whatever is handy.

This is the stuff revolutions are made of, but there is no revolution in sight. We talk of torches and pitchforks but we don't see them in our streets. Instead we roll over and die from their poisons and homicidal policies; we move into parking lots and sewers when they steal our homes and our livelihoods; we heave a sigh and get a third menial job when they steal our savings and the fruits of our labor. We see them for what they are, but we do not fight them. The political process no longer exists. It is no longer available to us as a route to change. George Carlin had it right. We have owners, and they don't care about us at all- At All -- AT ALL. Jefferson had it right too. There are no other options but revolution once the Republic has been vanquished.

In a press conference, the new Prime Minister of the Donetsk People's Republic, Aleksandr Zakharchenko, said this "We don't deserve to be annihilated just because there is natural gas under our feet". He stood up. He said no. He grabbed a gun and fought alongside his countrymen. Why can't Americans figure out that what is happening in Eastern Ukraine is happening here. now. Human life in America has no value. We are all disposable wherever we stand in the way of profit; and we will be flattened, like Rachel Corrie in front of that Israeli bulldozer. Survival in the US of A depends upon staying out of the path of their profit juggernaut.

So what is their endgame? It is to kill us; all of us. That is it. The less evil interpretation might be that they just don't care if we live or die so they will let us die, but still - they would prefer that we were just not here. There is no point to petitioning our government for relief or jobs or clean air, for ending fracking or stopping the pipelines. They don't care what we want because they would prefer we all died. And unless we look that in the eye, accept it as truth and come up with some battle plan for defeating them, replacing them with fully human souls and establishing a republic, that is what is going to happen.

Supernova Remnant Puppis A

Image Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/IAFE/G. Dubner et al., ESA/XMM-Newton
Infrared: NASA/ESA/JPL-Caltech/GSFC/R. Arendt et al.
Explanation: Driven by the explosion of a massive star, supernova remnant Puppis A is blasting into the surrounding interstellar medium about 7,000 light-years away. At that distance,this remarkable false-color exploration of its complex expansion is about 180 light-years wide. It is based on the mostcomplete X-ray dataset so far from the Chandra and XMM/Newton observations, and infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope. In blue hues, the filamentary X-ray glow is from gas heated by the supernova'sshock wave, while the infrared emission shown in red and green is from warm dust. The bright pastel tones trace the regions where shocked gas and warmed dust mingle. Light from the initial supernova itself, triggered by the collapse of the massivestar's core, would have reached Earth about 3,700 years ago, though the Puppis A supernova remnant remains a strong source inthe X-ray sky.

See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download
 the highest resolution version available.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

September 8, 2014, OpEdNews

Driving American Politics Underground
By Chris Hedges

The squabbles among the power elites, rampant militarism and the disease of imperialism, along with a mindless nationalism that characterizes all public debate, have turned officially sanctioned politics into a carnival act. Politics in the hands of the corporate state is anti-politics. It is designed to denigrate and destroy the values that make a liberal democracy and political participation possible.

Cross-posted from Truthdig
From Thousands of workers at McDonald's and other fast food outlets across the United States went on strike Thursday in a growing movement for higher wages.
Politics, if we take politics to mean the shaping and discussion of issues, concerns and laws that foster the common good, is no longer the business of our traditional political institutions. These institutions, including the two major political parties, the courts and the press, are not democratic.

They are used to crush any vestiges of civic life that calls, as a traditional democracy does, on its citizens to share among all its members the benefits, sacrifices and risks of a nation. They offer only the facade of politics, along with elaborate, choreographed spectacles filled with skillfully manufactured emotion and devoid of real political content. We have devolved into what Alexis de Tocqueville feared -- "democratic despotism."

The squabbles among the power elites, rampant militarism and the disease of imperialism, along with a mindless nationalism that characterizes all public debate, have turned officially sanctioned politics into a carnival act.

Pundits and news celebrities on the airwaves engage in fevered speculation about whether the wife of a former president will run for office -- and this after the mediocre son of another president spent eight years in the White House. This is not politics. It is gossip. Opinion polls, the staple of what serves as political reporting, are not politics. They are forms of social control. The use of billions of dollars to fund election campaigns and pay lobbyists to author legislation is not politics. It is legalized bribery.

The insistence that austerity and economic rationality, rather than the welfare of the citizenry, be the primary concerns of the government is not politics. It is the death of civic virtue. The government's system of wholesale surveillance and the militarization of police forces, along with the psychosis of permanent war and state-orchestrated fear of terrorism, are not politics. They are about eradicating civil liberties and justifying endless war and state violence. The chatter about death panels, abortion, gay rights, guns and undocumented children crossing the border is not politics. It is manipulation by the power elites of emotion, hate and fear to divert us from seeing our own powerlessness.

"Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country," Edward Bernays observed in his 1928 book, "Propaganda." "We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of."

Politics in the hands of the corporate state is anti-politics. It is designed to denigrate and destroy the values that make a liberal democracy and political participation possible. It is a cynical form of mass control. Corporate money has replaced the vote. Dissent is silenced or ignored. Political parties are Punch and Judy shows funded by corporate puppeteers. Universities, once the epicenter of social change, are corporate headquarters, flush with corporate money, government contracts and foundation grants. The commercial press, whose primary task is attracting advertising dollars, has become an arm of the entertainment industry. It offers news as vaudeville.

Genuine political activity, the organizing work needed to protect citizens from the abuses of power, exists only on the margins of society. Politics in America has gone underground.
The political philosopher Sheldon Wolin, who coined the term "inverted totalitarianism" to describe our corporate state, asks an essential question in his book "Democracy Incorporated." He writes: "Can the citizen relearn the demands that democracy places on its highest, most difficult office -- not, as commonly supposed, on the office of the president, but on that of the citizen? And that question has a practical corollary: the reinvigoration of citizenship requires more than a civics lesson. It would necessitate a reordering of basic power arrangements and a different understanding of civic commitments from that of spectator."

The relearning will be done in defiance of the established systems of power. The purported liberal democratic institutions, including the Democratic Party, are vehicles used to stymie rather than promote democratic reform.

Tocqueville in "Democracy in America" wondered what sort of despotism democratic nations should fear. He was prescient about our demise. He wrote:

"I see an innumerable crowd of like and equal men who revolve on themselves without repose, procuring the small and vulgar pleasures with which they fill their souls. Each of them, withdrawn and apart, is like a stranger to the destiny of all the others: his children and his particular friends form the whole human species for him; as for dwelling with his fellow citizens, he is beside them but he does not see them. ...
"Above these an immense tutelary power is elevated, which alone takes charge of assuring their enjoyments and watching over their fate. It is absolute, detailed, regular, farseeing, and mild. ... It seeks only to keep men fixed irrevocably in childhood. ... It provides for the citizens' security, foresees and secures their needs, facilitates their pleasures, conducts their principal affairs, directs their industry, regulates their estates, divides their inheritances; can it not take away from them entirely the trouble of thinking and the pain of living?

"Thus after taking each individual by turns in its powerful hands and kneading him as it likes, the sovereign extends its arms over society as a whole; it covers its surface with a network of small, complicated, painstaking uniform rules through which the most original minds and the most vigorous souls cannot clear a way to surpass the crowd; it does not break wills, but it softens them, bends them, and directs them; ... it does not destroy, it prevents things from being born; it does not tyrannize, it hinders, compromises, enervates, extinguishes, dazes, and finally reduces each nation to nothing more than a herd of timid and industrious animals of which the government is the shepherd."

There are groups on the front lines of economic, racial and environmental distress that are engaging in what Wolin and Tocqueville would describe as politics. They are not spectators. None of them is allied with a mainstream party or movement. Their voices are not heard on any of the major broadcast networks or in the mainstream press. They have little financial support. And their activists know that jail time comes with the job description. Any engagement in the actual political life of the nation will be through them. To invest energy in what the state defines as politics, including presidential campaigns, is a waste of time.

The call by the Climate Justice Alliance for a week of direct action, Sept. 17 through 24 -- coinciding with the gathering of world leaders at the United Nations summit -- is politics. The coordinated activities during the same week known as Flood Wall Street are politics. The campaign by fast food workers for a livable wage is politics. The effort to block the Keystone XL pipeline is politics. The building of local food initiatives is politics.

And there are many others. We must seek them out. We must embrace these groups to relearn what it means to be citizens and to participate in democracy. We must discredit and disrupt the system of faux politics that characterizes the corporate state. If we engage as citizens, rather than as spectators, if we reclaim politics, we might have a chance.

Submitters Bio:

Chris Hedges spent nearly two decades as a foreign correspondent in Central America, the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans. He has reported from more than 50 countries and has worked for The Christian Science Monitor, National Public Radio, The Dallas Morning News and The New York Times, for which he was a foreign correspondent for 15 years.

Hedges was part of the team of reporters at The New York Times awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 2002 for the paper's coverage of global terrorism. He also received the Amnesty International Global Award for Human Rights Journalism in 2002. The Los Angeles Press Club honored Hedges' original columns in Truthdig by naming the author the Online Journalist of the Year in 2009, and granted him the Best Online Column award in 2010 for his Truthdig essay "One Day We'll All Be Terrorists."

Hedges is a senior fellow at The Nation Institute in New York City and has taught at Columbia University, New York University and Princeton University. He currently teaches inmates at a correctional facility in New Jersey.

Hedges began his career reporting the war in El Salvador. Following six years in Latin America, he took time off to study Arabic and then went to Jerusalem and later Cairo. He spent seven years in the Middle East, most of them as the bureau chief there for The New York Times. He left the Middle East in 1995 for Sarajevo to cover the war in Bosnia and later reported the war in Kosovo. Afterward, he joined the Times' investigative team and was based in Paris to cover al-Qaida. He left the Times after being issued a formal reprimand for denouncing the Bush administration's invasion of Iraq.

He has written nine books, including "Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle" (2009), "I Don't Believe in Atheists" (2008) and the best-selling "American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America" (2008). His book "War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning" (2003) was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction. His latest book is "Death of the Liberal Class" (2010)

Hedges holds a B.A. in English literature from Colgate University and a Master of Divinity degree from Harvard University. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, Calif. Hedges speaks Arabic, French and Spanish and knows ancient Greek and Latin. In addition to writing a weekly original column for Truthdig, he has written for Harper's Magazine, The New Statesman, The New York Review of Books, Adbusters, Granta, Foreign Affairs and other publications.

Sunday, September 07, 2014


Dudjom Sangyum, Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo Enters "Thug dam"


Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo. From

Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo and Dudjom Rinpoche. From
Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo (1925–2014) was the consort and second wife of HH Dudjom Jigdral Yeshe Dorje, a high lama of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. She spent many years with Rinpoche establishing Dharma centers in India and the United States and helping to propagate the Nyingma Buddhist Dharma. Together they had two daughters and one son, Shenphen Dawa Norbu Rinpoche, who upholds the Dudjom Tersar lineage through his own teaching activities.
Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo was considered a wisdom dakini. HH Dilgo Khytentse Rinpoche wrote a longevity prayer for her in which he refers to her as an emanation of Yeshe Tsogyal, the consort of Guru Rinpoche. She was also recognized as an emanation of White Tara. Dakinis would visit her in dreams as well as grant her prophecies that would instruct on methods for extending Dudjom Rinpoche’s and other high-ranking Tibetan lamas’ life force. She was also considered gifted in the art of divination, and was active in the role of recognizing many tulkus, or incarnate lamas.
Sangye Khandro, in an interview in the book Dakini Power, said she thought of Sangyum Kusho as one of her root teachers. “She was Dudjom Rinpoche’s source of everything, giving Rinpoche the energy he needed to benefit beings. As a wisdom dakini, she extended his life. As an aristocrat, she is very proper and formal, completely unique. She always looks immaculate, very beautiful and feminine, wearing the finest jewels and silks. . . . if there is any woman on the planet who I admire most and want to be like, it’s her” (Haas 2013).
After Dudjom Rinpoche’s passing in 1987, Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo spent the last 20 years of her life in New York City, in a strict retreat in her brownstone house. She would not leave the house, but instead chose to spend her time engaged in spiritual practice. She said that when she passed there should be no elaborate ceremonies performed to honor her or on her behalf, nor should high lamas trouble themselves by visiting her body. In this way, she showed great humility in not wanting to trouble anyone.
On 27 August at 5:55 pm EST, at the age of 89, Dudjom Sangyum, Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo passed into the state of thug dam. Thug dam is a state of meditation that realized masters enter as they leave this world and their human bodies. During thug dam, the consciousness of the meditator enters the heart center, and while the rest of the body grows cold in rigor mortis, the heart center itself will stay warm. At this point they have not entered the bardo, nor are they alive in a conventional sense; instead they are absorbed in meditation upon the ground luminosity of being. Usually, the meditator will remain sitting upright in meditation posture during the entire duration of the thug dam, which can last three days or longer depending on the meditator’s capacity to maintain meditative absorption within the ground luminosity.
Kusho Rigdzin Wangmo not only practiced the Dharma completely, serving a holy master intimately, but also illustrated the most profound manner of passing from this world, directly exemplifying the great meditative power that Buddhist practitioners are capable of displaying at the time of death.

Clinton Fans --- Think Again !

Sept. 5 2014 2:52 PM,

Hillary Clinton Calls Henry Kissinger a Friend, Praises His Commitment to Democracy

Hillary and Henry.
Photo by Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

Hillary Clinton has written a review of Henry Kissinger's new book World Order for the Washington Post; it's mostly boilerplate, but there are a few interesting lines:
Kissinger is a friend, and I relied on his counsel when I served as secretary of state. He checked in with me regularly, sharing astute observations about foreign leaders and sending me written reports on his travels. Though we have often seen the world and some of our challenges quite differently, and advocated different responses now and in the past, what comes through clearly in this new book is a conviction that we, and President Obama, share: a belief in the indispensability of continued American leadership in service of a just and liberal order.
Clinton also approvingly quotes a passage in Kissinger's book about “respecting national sovereignty” and “adopting participatory and democratic systems of governance.”
Biographer Walter Isaacson and former Slate contributor Christopher Hitchens are among those who have written that Kissinger leaked information about duly elected President Lyndon Johnson's Vietnam peace talks to presidential candidate Richard Nixon, who sabotaged the talks in an effort to improve his chances of winning the election. Kissinger is also infamous for advocating and planning the overthrow of democratically elected Chilean President Salvador Allende. There's also the fact that the president with whom Kissinger worked most closely—Nixon—is the only president in the 238-year history of our country to have resigned in shame after being caught urinating on the Constitution.

 And Clinton wants us to know that this is someone whose conception of democracy she shares!