What’s wrong with zealotry?

Jack wrote this in September, 2006:

Probably no human trait has caused more misery, bloodshed, pain and general deviltry in history than political, or religious zealotry.

Political, or religious zealotry.  The deadly twins.  They aren’t two separate traits.  Political, or religious zealotry are just one trait following two different paths to create ugly.

Think about it.  One of the reasons political and religious zealots tend to be found in the same human being lies in the fact that religious zealots have already graduated with honors from the school of blind faith.

Communism?  3/4 century of human misery caused by political zealotry.  Cambodia?  The Inquisition?  The Mormons having to flee to Utah?  The 3rd Reich?  Jim Jones?  Wossname Christian/Patriot bossman wanting to assassinate wossnamisimo prez of Venezuela?  The Kennedy bros. ordering the assassination of Prez Diem, was it, our ally, South Vietnam?  The Kennedy bros., themselves getting assassinated?

Political, or religious zealotry.

Today it isn’t getting better, as a person might have expected, because of the collapse of Communism world-wide.  It’s gotten a lot worse.  We’ve got Muslim zealots, Christian zealots, Prez step-two Bush Dynasty and ex-prez BlowJob wives all in the game of zealous one-upsmanship.  Zionist zealots wanting to snag every piece of real estate in the Middle East they can drum up an excuse to play for US support, which doesn’t take much.  Hispanic zealots in the US southwest wanting to take it away from the white zealots who took it away from them.  Environmentalist zealots trying to spike trees to injure the workmen cutting down trees while they listen to Joseph Rush Goebbels on the radio to help them remember what to think about rad-libs, Arabs, and whomever it is we’re bombing the bejesus out of this week.

This ain’t cutting it.  It’s not making your lives happier, and it’s sure as hell not making them better.

One of the things I like best about the teachings of the Buddha is the emphasis on moderation, the cautions against zealotry.

Religious moderates have never burned one another at the stake.  Political moderates have never dragged out the guillotine to punish the opposition.  They never built any gas chambers and ovens.  No political or religious moderate ever pulled the trigger on anyone, ever dropped a bomb on anyone except in self-defense.

Political, or religious zealotry.  Human traits worth hating, but they usually only hate one another.  Moderates never bother to hate anyone.

Moderates.  Nice, easy living sort of term.

Jack

More musings- Ted Turner

Jack wrote this in August, 2005.

I mentioned Ted Turner in my last musings entry.  Most of you probably know who he is.  Famous rich guy, inherited wealth…. richer than 18 inches up a bull’s behind.  Owns more land in New Mexico than the US Government…. I’m lying a bit there, but he owns an enormous amount of real estate …. some stupendous beautiful places.

Anyway, this guy, Turner, used to be married to Phony Joanie (Baez), or Hanoi Jane (Fonda).  Probably the Fonda woman, though I might be wrong.  I recall thinking at the time he picked the opposite one to the one I’d have picked if I had to be married to one of them…. he went for pretty, while I would have gone for the birdlike singing voice.  That voice would have provided some consolation for having to be in close proximity with such a person.

But, when his marriage with one of the other of them disassembled I saw an interview with him somewhere.  He was whining about his hard life, actually said that during that post-divorce time when he was also losing control of AOL, which he evidently owned, that he thought he had the ‘trials of Job’.  Said he gave serious thought to suicide.

Wow.

So any of you bloggers who think winning the lottery will solve any of your serious mental problems, think again.

Jack

John Wayne sums up

Jack wrote this in September, 2006:

A brief summary:

I don’t harbor any illusions that anyone’s going to read that entire article (previously posted long article from a historian that I am not re-posting here-J.) about how the American Southwest came to need a fence at the particular location where it’s thought to be needed.  Instead, I’ll give you a brief quote by a great American to summarize the US foreign policy that got us here.

After the filming of The Comancheros, great  American John Wayne was asked during an interview whether he had any problem with the fact we’d taken all the land away from the Indians by force of arms, then ‘given’ tiny pieces of it back to them.

When Europeans got here,” Wayne answered, “the Indians were selfishly hoarding the entire continent.”

Europeans took care of that little problem.

Then Mexico attempted to selfishly hoard the entire (now) southwestern US.  Which rightfully weeded-off the good Amercuns, forcing them to take it away from Mexico by armed force.

Now the former selfish hoarders of the Amercun southwest are breaking US laws by re-entering the country they had to have taken from them because of their selfishness.

A lot of Amercuns don’t like that.  So the US government has to do something to try to convince them they’re doing something.

A fence.

Meaningless gestures have always worked well, thus far.

Meanwhile, the US has discovered Muslim people are selfishly hoarding land that has a lot of petroleum beneath it.  Question is whether to send them somewhere else when we have to punish them for selfishly hoarding that land, or just figure out a justification for killing them all.

Just my rad-lib viewpoint, supported by actual history, rather than patriotic myth.

Jack

Ask Old Jules: What’s more important, Philosophical arguments for the afterlife, Shamelessness vs. Pride/Dignity, Why people are dull or smart

Harper, TX 2010 123

Old Jules, what is more important: (1)good health (2)being loved (3)have lots of money?

When a need gets satisfied we rapidly put it on the back burner and shift the priorities to those left unsatisfied. Left to its own devices without conscious intervention life tends to be an unexamined race to satisfy a series of needs of diminishing necessity, but each as important as the one just satisfied. Those we take for granted don’t regain importance until we lose them.

Old Jules, are there any good philosophical arguments why an afterlife should exist?

Atheists and their preoccupation with the issue might be the best evidence and argument in favor of an afterlife existing. It’s understandable that people who believe in an afterlife would be allow their thoughts to range over the concept, maybe even be evangelical. But the fact such a huge population of people who don’t believe in an afterlife become so animated and bellicose over it seems to me to offer a strong indirect argument along the lines of the bard, “Methinks the lady protests too much.” IMO

Old Jules, why do so many people in this society get shamelessness confused for pride/dignity?

Not many do. Dignity is self-respect. Shamelessness is passive, a non-acknowledgement anything the shameless person does is worthy of shame. Maybe it sometimes includes a repudiation of those who’d attempt to inspire shame, but not necessarily. People only consider the two in a similar context when attempting to create a rhetorical environment wherein they can elevate themselves above those whom they disapprove and whom they feel appear to have dignity [positive] but in fact are shameless [negative]

Old Jules, why are some people are brilliant and some are dull?

Good question and one worth pondering. I suspect it’s something about operating systems and background software. Might be we’re running too many background programs and could improve things by looking into the activity/process viewer to see what’s taking up so much RAM. Or doing some cleanup routines and defragmenting.

A wild shot in the dark

Jack wrote this in February, 2006:

Okay, blogsterisimos:

Some of you are already accomplished healers.  Some of you want to learn to be.

Here’s a project for all of us.  Something worth doing.  Something to hone up our blades preparatory to doing something useful.

A MAJOR HEALING PROJECT, Step-by-step. 

What to do and how to do it.

The ducks and chickens will grade our papers.

Avian Flu

Although nobody much is dying of this new Avian Flu thing, America (and every other country that includes people who believe anything the US media says) is doing a bit of untimely urinating in the britches.  Mainly because they need that adrenaline fix.

Let’s all play a shabby trick on the fear mongers.  Let’s rob them of the chance to be afraid they’re gonna get the blind staggers.  They can’t worry they’ll go off puking into the bushes to die from bird flu if birds aren’t even dying of it.

Make them find something else to fret about.

No, there won’t be a tidal wave of human deaths to come out of this epizootic.  You won’t be able hug yourselves afterward with warm fuzzies because of all the humans still burning everything that comes into their paths because you saved them.

But you can be a part of something to save the lives of a lot of feathered critters mostly just minding their own business.

And you can have the satisfaction of knowing you’ll have to wait for something besides bird flu to kill you.

Interested?

Okay.  Whether you’re already a metaphysical wizard, or just someone who likes to hear a rooster crow mornings, here’s the drill:

  1. Sit back and take a deep breath.  Let your eyes droop closed.
  2. Relax yourself muscle by muscle from the tips of your toes upward, every muscle.  Fingertips inward to your stem, muscle by muscle….Torso, back, stomach, neck, jaws, forehead, ears, eyelids. Usually helps to strain each muscle individually before you relax it.
  3. All relaxed, sit a few minutes and savor how good it feels to be relaxed for once in your life.
  4. Now, allow a finger of your mind to travel inside your head to the center of your forehead, just above the brow and feel around…listen while you do it, listen to the feel of your forehead… you should feel a sort of ‘puckering’ sensation there when you do this. If you haven’t done it before, practice it a while.  Just ‘listening’ to it.
  5. What you just felt was your Third Eye.  If you didn’t know it already, you probably need to do it again, practice opening it.  Remember how it feels.
  6. Now that third eye you just felt is the most powerful metaphysical weapon in your arsenal.  If you want, load it up and fire it at something, just for kicks.  See that chain hanging down from the ceiling fan?  Stare hard at it.  Tell it to move.  Start it swinging.  Nevermind if it only moves half an inch at first.  Practice will improve you.   Sometimes it helps to visualize an arm and hand reaching out from the middle of your forehead, pushing the object you’re pushing.
  7. Now what I want you to do is visualize your third eye looking through an impossible microscope.  One that can enlarge something the size of a virus.  The virus you’re looking at is the one that’s responsible for Avian Flu.  Reach down into that microscope and feel it.  Listen to the energy coming from it.  Memorize the sound, the smell, the texture and feel of the energy of that virus.
  8. Now, I want you to visualize yourself smiling at the virus and all the kinfolks it has everywhere, and throwing a pall over it, sucking the life energy out of it.  Visualize yourself taking the life-energy from that entire species of virus, wadding it up into a shining yellow ball in your hand, crushing it, releasing it to the Universe where it can go on to better things.
  9. Visualize the light fragments of that burst ball of energy sprinkling around, dissipating, all in a joyful way, spreading around the way snow spreads in one of those glass balls you used to see.

Okay.  Practice that, and keep doing it a while.

That might do the job.  But let’s throw everything but the kitchen sink at bird flu, drag out the heaviest artillery, the pocket nukes, the ray guns.

Let’s keep it up until the ennui of this bird flu epizootic goes out of our lives and we can find something worthwhile to be scared about.

I’ll post Step 2 in a day or so.

Jack

(Step 2 was never posted, due to lack of interest- Jeanne)

News travels fast

Jack wrote this in August, 2005:

Richard French, the treasure hunter who wrote Four Days From Fort Wingate, used to poke semi-bitter fun at me by saying, “Jack isn’t looking for gold. He’s looking for the Lost Adams Diggings. He could find a dozen glory holes while he’s looking, and if they weren’t the Adams, he’d just walk right on.”

Dick disliked this trait of mine, which he had fairly well nailed. My other partners over the years didn’t care much for it, either. If a site fit the bill as an Adams prospect I’d beat it to death trying to get it to declare itself, whether there was any gold or not. But if it had some gold, but didn’t satisfy any of the other characteristics of the Adams, I didn’t have time (from my point of view) to try to discover how much potential it had.

In those days I could afford the luxury to indulge such snobbery, though it cost me a few friends and prospecting partners.

When Dick French and I were searching together, he was roughly the age I am now, had a bad knee, was generally not in robust health and not in a great financial position. What he was looking for was the treasure hunting equivalent of a jackpot win. He wanted an easier life than he had, and he couldn’t are less whether it came from the Adams, or just some glory hole we located while we were searching for it. He needed a younger, healthier man he could trust who could get into the rough spots and do the heavy lifting to sort out what we found.

Then, if it was good, he wanted to sell the entire claim, lock, stock and banana peel, to some outfit big enough to rip a hole in a mountain and bring out what they’d bought.

Dick and I parted ways early in the 1990s. A difference in viewpoint so fundamental works fine so long as nothing’s found. But the instant anything promising comes into the picture, everything falls apart.

When I completed The Lost Adams Diggings – Myth, Mystery and Madness, things had changed a bit in my life, though I hadn’t paused to examine the implications. I wrote the book about the Adams, which is what I believed, would interest the readers. I told everything I thought I’d learned that might be important to them. I did it against the advice of every treasure-hunter-friend I had.

I didn’t anticipate a lot of fallout from that book. I had no idea I’d suddenly be getting several emails and letters a month from strangers who wanted to tell me where it is, (from studying maps, mostly) wanting me to go climb a mountain, do everything necessary, then take some miniscule percentage. I didn’t anticipate people gleaning from the book the mentions of places where the Adams isn’t, but where there was evidence of some gold.

Here’s one that came today. A follow-up from one last week from a young geologist who wanted to explain to me that the Adams is in a canyon in the Zuni Mountains precisely where I thought it was a decade and a half ago and searched thoroughly:

Hi Jack,

Do you mind telling me were you found gold in the Zuni’s? You mentioned you found some gold somewhere east of Cottonwood Canyon?

Where was this spot if you don’t mind telling me? I don’t plan on panning it, but it would help me establish more possible reference points.

I am working on a comprehensive theory of the Zuni Mtns as a possible location for the Adam’s dig. I  would be glad to share with you the

current status of my theory in the next week or so if you would like to hear it and discuss it. It has been worked out with much work and lots of time in the field.

hope to hear from you and discuss this soon, yours,

Brian

The placer he’s talking about is one I passed over because it wasn’t the Adams. I’ve never gotten back to check it out further, though lately I’ve intended to.

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I carry more than my fair share of stupid around with me. I suppose word has gotten around.

Jack

Selective abhorrence of terrorism

Jack wrote this in October, 2006:

I’ve composed this from memory of the events of the time.  Some minor inaccuracies, names of places might be wrong or miss-spelled.  But this is a generally accurate description of an actual event as it happened, including the reaction of the world (Europe and the US) during the aftermath.

Not many years ago, 1987, maybe, the Israeli Defense Forces, moved into Lebanon to intervene in a war between the Christian Phalangists and the Palestine Liberation Front forces.

As they did so, the UN personnel and the PLO combat personnel evacuated by ship, leaving a non-combatant, mostly un-armed population of 1000 Palestinians at the major PLO base at Shatila, Lebanon.

The Israeli forces moved to surround Shatila, but didn’t enter it.  They locked it up so nobody could leave, and brought the Christian Phalangists in to do the dirty work.  For 36 hours they lit the sky with flares while the Christians moved in and slaughtered all 1000, every man, woman and child at Shatila.

A few managed to survive, hiding under the bodies of the dead until the dust settled and the gunfire stopped.  Then the Israeli loudspeakers came on.  “We are only looking for terrorists.  No one else will be harmed.  (words to persuade any unlikely survivors to come out with their hands up).”

No US president ever became outraged by the slaughter, clearly a military action.  Clearly no terrorist act.  No wars on THIS terrorism, because the right people were killed by the right people.

We in the US never liked Palestinians.  They didn’t give up their homes and their land easily enough to suit us when we created the Zionist state of Israel.  When they were shoved off into filthy camps in Gaza and elsewhere, they threw rocks at cops and got their ugly pictures in the papers.

The PLO became a leading force among them, dedicated to trying to get the ancestral homeland back by any method.  They killed Europeans.  Killed some good Americans.  Bastards.  Their leader dressed the way Jesus must have dressed, dressed the way Matthew, Mark Luke and John probably dressed.  Didn’t shave often enough.

Let the Christians slaughter them all they want, was the world reaction.  They ain’t getting their land back.  We gave it away, and we wouldn’t have done it if we didn’t know what was best.

Let the Christians kill them all.

The Lebanese Christian Phalangists did their work at Shatila, but they ran out of steam.  So we had to declare war on terrorists to expand the job.

A holy war with the right people killing the right people.

We’ve got to do it, because they hate us (gotta wonder why), because of the unprovoked 9/11 attack, because, as luck has it, they’re sitting on the oil we need to keep the country running.

And, of course, as everyone knows, they want to destroy us.

There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with racial, ethnic, religious, or patriotic cleansing. Slaughtering, enslaving, and taking the property of people who believe differently from you, who have a different skin color, who speak a different language, so long as they have something you want.

The Jews have done it from their earliest history.

The Muslims have done it since the beginning.

The Christians have done it throughout their own history.

The US could never have become great without a willingness to follow lockstep in that tradition, taking whatever it wanted from anyone who had it, Indians, French, Spaniards, Mexicans, Mormons, and slaughtering them out of pleasure or necessity occasionally.

Nothing intrinsically wrong with that, if you’re a good Jew, Muslim, Christian, good American.

What’s wrong is the hypocrisy. The lies.

Have the decency to be honest about your beliefs, your actions, your bloody history and the bloody future you aspire to.

Jack

 

National Defense Stockpile of Cat Hair and Burrs

Jack wrote this in June, 2005:

When I was a kid during the ’50s it used to be common for people to have a burlap bag (toe sack) hanging in the barn where they’d put the leavings from the curry comb every day.  When the bag got full they’d put it under the saddle, toe sack and all, and pack it tight until the burlap wore away, leaving a pretty fine saddle blanket about a half-inch thick with a texture of felt.

For a number of years I’ve intended to do something similar with cat hair.  During the ’80s I used to pick the burrs out of the dead hair when I brushed the cats and stuffed it into a growing mat between the mattress and bedsprings.  Had a pretty good mess of it built up before my marriage broke up in ’92, but when I was packing my goods I forgot to retrieve it.

I’ve begun the project several more times during the years since, but I don’t have the stamina and stick-with-itness anymore, I suppose.  Those hairballs get a foot or so in diameter and I lose heart, forget it until the stuff ends up discarded, then begin again when the thought returns as a mild enthusiasm.

I’m reminded of this because such a project would be out of question of late.  Those cats are determined to bring every burr in the village of Placitas into the house and store them up for hard times.

Maybe they know something they can do with them.  Make some sort of basket to lie in and sleep.  I dunno.

Jack

Memorial Day- Honoring Heroes

Jack wrote this in 2005 or 2006:

Honoring ‘heroes’?

To suggest Memorial Day is for honoring ‘heroes’ is to rob the 99 percent of those rows of graves in National Cemeteries of being honored (by you) on Memorial Day. Those runned over by trucks, drowned, killed by accident far from any contact with enemies weren’t heroes. Those who died in plane crashes, ships hit by torpedoes.

To suggest they were is an insult to the men of courage who did throw themselves on hand grenades.

But to suggest those who weren’t heroes aren’t worthy of remembrance measures the worth of those who say it.

Memorial Day became Memorial Day in 1882 for remembering those who died in the Civil War on both sides.

Depending on perspective, one side, or the other, definitely wasn’t defending freedom.
Whether they’d be correct in believing they died in vain, whether almost all our ancestors who’d look at us and despise us for what we’ve become, are correct, those rows of graves include thousands of reluctant draftees who served and died because they had to do so or go to jail.

Many didn’t believe they were defending freedom, nor anything else worth dying for. If they could look at this country today and speak of what they see here many would tell you their deaths were meaningless. They died for nothing, many would say.

Memorial Day ain’t for flag waving, for drumming up support for current wars.

Memorial Day is for remembering those who died in uniform.

Ask Old Jules: Incarnating with lessons, Who goes on a spaceship when earth is destroyed, How the world is not working perfectly

Harper, TX 2010 123

NOTE FROM JEANNE: I’ll be offline for a week or so, heading out to the wilderness to commune with pack rats and sunsets and the Milky Way. I’ll catch up with comments when I get back!

Old Jules, do we incarnate with specific lessons to learn as I frequently hear in spiritual circles?

I personally believe we do. The reason I think so [or one of the reasons] is that we learn from hardships and don’t learn from ease. A good case can be made that life is about challenges, going into them or avoiding them as a matter of self definition.

But I happen to also be convinced that what we don’t do this time around we’ll do next, or the next or the next. And what we do manage isn’t an escape because there’ll be more, just as growth-oriented and probably just as difficult whatever we might get done this time.

In my view this provides the strongest possible incentive to face challenges and do what growing we’re able, even if it’s not rewarded with something easier, but at least something different.

Old Jules, if earth was going to be destroyed and only option left to design a spaceship…? If earth was going to be destroyed within a year and only option left was to construct a large spaceship let’s say all countries came together and it was technologically and financially feasible to construct self-sustaining spaceships for just 2000 people, which people do you think should be on it? and how should the people be chosen?

2000 fertile women along with viable sperm from men with courage, mechanical abilities, intelligence and achievement in fields of literature, philosophy, science and math. No sperm from politicians, bankers, shoe salesmen, hamburger flippers, lawyers, cops, or stockbrokers.

Old Jules, in what ways is the world not working perfectly?

The moon wanders around badly in its orbit and people who don’t speak Hindi use the Hindi word ‘Namaste’ to elevate themselves in the eyes of others.