Facebook Is Driving the Final Nail Into Organized Religion
Martin LeFevre: So now that Facebook has killed what was left of political comity and compromise, by catalyzing division and hate through its algorithms, it's turning its hellish gaze on organized religion to kill what's left of religious feeling and fellowship. Is that part of God's plan? ... As the NYT has reported, "Facebook created its faith partnerships team in 2017 and began courting religious leaders, especially of evangelical and Pentecostal groups, in earnest in 2018." ... "Our hope is that one day people will host religious services in virtual reality spaces as well, or use augmented reality as an educational tool to teach their children the story of their faith." ... I've never been a believer in End Times theology, but it's hard not to feel this isn't the last act of Darkness..
Jul 27, 2021, 10:26am
Educating the Religious Mind and Heart
Martin LeFevre: Though Jesus didn't prophesy the Second Coming of Christ, if he were to return, the first thing he would do would be to disavow any connection with Catholicism and Christianity. ... Jesus was a revolutionary of the heart, and a radical renewal prophet in the Jewish tradition. He was not the founder of Catholicism and Christianity, which are largely antithetical to his teachings. ... Religions are one thing, and the religious mind and heart another. ... We need to tend to the garden of our own hearts ... We need to pull up the old roots and new weeds and allow impersonal love to grow. ... We need to be still...(Revised)
Jul 24, 2021, 10:32am
Can Humankind Make a Leap In Consciousness?
Martin LeFevre: In his book, ''The Neanderthal's Necklace,'' Juan Luis Arsuaga, a paleo-anthropologist and professor at the University of Madrid, provides a cogent discussion of consciousness. ... "Did human consciousness come into existence through incremental changes, or through 'one great qualitative leap?'" ... This is urgently worth delving into, because it pertains to an essential leap in consciousness, which has to occur if humanity is to adequately respond man's self-made climate and ecological crisis. ... Simply put, human beings have to make the leap from consciousness based on symbols, thought and self-centeredness, to a consciousness based on awareness, attention and insight...
Jul 22, 2021, 10:25am
Where There Is No Vision, the People Perish
Martin LeFevre: Back when there was a real possibility of superpowers working together for their own good and the good of humanity, I brought a well placed Russian to Ford Aerospace after my trip to the USSR in January of 1990. ... With my partners in the US, our intent was to "help build an ecologically and ethically sound global market with our former superpower enemy." ... The next day, the VP with whom I had arranged the meeting called and said, "Four of us voted in favor of going forward; the lawyer vetoed it. I'm sorry." ,,, I knew at that moment the whole 'Russian vision' was over, and that things were going to go bad in the years ahead...
Jul 9, 2021, 10:43am
Forever At War, Abroad and at Home
Martin LeFevre: It's fitting that the end of the American Empire is marked on this feeble 4th of July by slinking out of the "graveyard of empires" with a whimper and a lie. ... Meanwhile, Americans are still heeding George Bush's advice after 9.11 to flood into Vegas or Disneyland, lest the terrorists destroy our precious "way of life." And just before this parody of Independence Day, Donald Rumsfeld, a fountainhead of double talk and architect of the invasion of Iraq, kicked off. The gods must alternate between laughter and tears. ... Is there a reckoning for nations? Not a divine reckoning, but a karmic reckoning, for lack of a better term? Clearly the lies and evils a nation commits eventually catch up to it, leaving patriotism truly the last refuge of scoundrels...
Jul 4, 2021, 11:15am
Speeding Toward a Dark Singularity
Martin LeFevre: "Humanity is sloppily, awkwardly lumbering toward consciousness." As much as I would like to believe that myself, it simply isn't so. ... The basic direction of humankind is rapidly becoming darker and direr. The need for hope denies the necessity of seeing things as they are. The human condition and consciousness are worsening by the week. ... The idea that information and knowledge equal change is, like false hope itself, dying a hard death. It's no choice between cynicism and nihilism, and believing that we're headed in the right direction as a species- they are two sides of the same coin.
Jun 21, 2021, 5:00pm
Put Mystical Experiencing Before Scientific Explanation
Martin LeFevre: Neuroscientists are discovering more and more how the human brain works, even as they understand less and less the Mind in meditation. ... At this point we need to understand what science can and cannot do. Neuroscientists maintain that the scientific study of the human brain can encompass and explain mystical experiencing, because they believe the meditative state arises solely between skull bones. ... The premise is false on the face of it...
Jun 11, 2021, 10:29am
The Earth is Dying
Martin LeFevre: The warm sun sinks to the horizon, and the temperature begins to fall. The world returns with the din of the highway, but I'm still far away, with the hawks over the hills. ... Watching a solitary falcon hover over a field as the sun goes down is to witness one of the greatest spectacles in the natural world. I never took the falcons for granted, but after delighting in observing them within a mile of my home for over a decade, I didn't think they would disappear in the space of a few months. ... Now the kites of Chico have become a casualty of man's war on nature...
Jun 5, 2021, 10:27am
Meditation Has No Context
Martin LeFevre: Lately I've been grappling with the question of context. It would seem to be a given that we live in contexts of one kind or another, from the context of nature, which man ignores at our peril, to the fading contexts of distinct cultures. However, does meditation have a context? ... We are creatures with a finite lifespan. Isn't that the ultimate context? ... What about the context of the Earth itself, and its carrying capacity for man's destructiveness? ... That context encompasses all the lifespans of all the people who have ever lived, because it defines the limited number of chances we have as a species to change course...
May 25, 2021, 10:16am
Foreshadowing the Shadow of 9.11
Martin LeFevre: As the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attack on America approaches, allow me to be among the first to offer some proposed insights into the twisted heaps of our psyches left in the wake of 9.11. ... I have a friend of 35 years, with whom I attended grad school in philosophy, who is a 9.11 "truther." 9.11 truthers are intellectuals, mostly on the left, who refused from the outset to accept the government version of the events of that terrible fall day in 2001. ... If they simply pressed for answers to political and philosophical questions, they would have provided a service to humanity and history...
May 20, 2021, 9:50am
Orcas, Humans, Aliens and Intelligence
Martin LeFevre: Probably the smartest animal on Earth, other than humans, is the Orca, projectively known as "Killer Whales." Of course smarts, as seen with humans, is a very different thing than intelligence. ... Just what is intelligence, and would an extraterrestrial species recognize Homo sapiens as an intelligent species? ... Given how man is plundering the planet, we're running out of room for error, and urgently need to understand our place in nature, and the universe. ... Intelligence is, at bottom, the realization of a spiritual and philosophical capacity, and as humans we aren't coming up to the mark...
May 15, 2021, 10:19am
Feeling Beyond Memory On Mother's Day
Martin LeFevre: There are still many places in the world where a woman risks physical violence by men for honestly saying what she really thinks. Perhaps over the generations it's become ingrained in most cultures for women to maintain a tactical ambiguity. ... The real and present danger now is of not seeing and saying things as they are. It outweighs, in the West at least, the habit of tactical ambiguity. Neither women nor men can have things both ways ... Indeed, now that one of America's political parties has become the party of lies, telling the truth has become urgently necessary...
May 8, 2021, 10:11am
Advances and Setbacks in Consciousness
Martin LeFevre: Just as the age of nations, much less empires, is over, so too the age of distinct cultures belongs to history. Yet because of a failure of perception and imagination, people cling to the remnants of their cultures, with useless traditions, irrelevant religions, and divisive identifications. ... The new culture will not be based on tradition, or memory, or even knowledge, but on awareness, insight and right relationship between humankind and nature, and between human beings. I don't know when such a global culture will emerge, but I'm certain it has to emerge if humanity is to survive and thrive...
May 6, 2021, 10:09am
Take People As They Are, One At a Time
Martin LeFevre: Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, in his response to President Biden's address to a joint session of Congress, uttered words that will go down in infamy: "Hear me clearly: America is not a racist country." ... Scott is proof that delusion does not hew to a color line in present-day America. However for a black man from South Carolina, of all places, to evince such withering denial, is soul-crushing even to whites grappling with centuries of racism in this country. ... Black people have endured "institutionalized racism" for so long that understanding how to deal with anger and suffering resulting from America's deep-seated bigotry has long since been a matter of emotional and spiritual survival...
Apr 30, 2021, 10:45am
Self-Knowing Is Learning Negatively
Martin LeFevre: The most difficult thing for humans to do is to be self-knowing. We all think we know ourselves, and that may be so, as far as self-knowledge goes. But self-knowledge and self-knowing are completely different things, and very few people are self-knowing. ... Self-knowledge is a function of memories, images and ideas, which are inevitably of the past. Whereas self-knowing is of the present, and negative. Not in the usual sense of the word - unconstructive, unhelpful and pessimistic. Rather, with the accent on the second syllable - ne-ga'-tive - to unlearn. ... How can unlearning what we think we know about ourselves reveal what we actually are, and can be?...
Apr 26, 2021, 10:23am