Monday, March 4, 2019

Freedom, What it is--and is not

Freedom; what is it--and what is it not?   

Please, watch this and listen: 

It is a great word, "freedom", an incredible concept; but finally, what is it? 

Can governments deliver on their proclamations and pronouncements of freedom?  Can they offer anything more than a flag and a few ideas--even giveaways--as some sort of bait & switch?  The answer is "no"; indeed, governments or the state operate by force alone, whether through militancy or the media, the controlling of the mind, the masses.  

Freedom (or liberty) is not the supposed right to do what you want, but rather, to do what you should.  

What should you do?  
What is the right thing?  

Please, do not depend on the state to set the basis of what is right, the right thing?  Like any one of us alone, the state is prone to corruption but, with immense power, puts corruption into practice on a scale as no other.   

The state nor any such institutions can deliver on freedom.  Where then does freedom, to the extent of possibilities, come from? 

Freedom to its fullest comes only through death, if at all, when the soul is set completely free from corruption.  

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Hero in the making

A hero in the making is one who is learning to overcome fears; perhaps, he is realizing that fear(s) is/are or can be very real, but often are simply the absence of love (if you consider that love overcomes fears).  

Mentioned in the last article as an example of a hero, a woman decides to try to have a child, to give birth. In the ages of history, it was not that long ago that childbearing was much more fatal ; and thus, all the more a hero she is--or was.  Sometimes, perhaps more often than not, she did not decide on her own--or decide at all--but the decision was one of her husband and/family (at the same time, it was convention for women to bear children). 

Aside from the health risks, child bearing is crucial to a society (any society showing a sustained, declining birthrate is dying). It is (or was) heroic to bear children but it is/was also heroic to raise them and, preferably, to do it well.  For the ages, folks have formed families, tribes, clans and communities that constitute a society, civilization, and undoubtedly there have been many unsung heroes along with those who never qualify. 

Mothers can be heroes in many ways, not the least of which is their love and care for their family; but even though they bear children, still, a mother may fail to love, to care and to offer herself a sacrifice (much of the same applies to men, fathers and family).  

What then finally makes a parent a hero (principally to his children)?  
It is an undying love. 

Well, do all superheroes where capes (and other such garb)?

I have a T-shirt from with a related slogan:  "Not all heroes wear capes". This was a gift for giving blood.  The prior time I got a blanket and now the T-shirt. 

But giving blood is sometimes what heroes do; that is, they (him or her) make great sacrifices and sometime suffer much for the sake of others.  They may not actually shed blood but the do sacrifice and perhaps would give their lives if the need arose.Heroes are not out for themselves.   

Who is our hero(s)?  What do you consider heroism, heroic?  

It is said or believed that the hero (traits) are fundamentally truthfulness and unselfishness. However super the hero, they must carry these two qualities, behaviors and lifestyle.  Yes, super-heroes dazzle us with their theater but it more than person behind the mask, armor and all than the appearance, perception.  

In his book Dark Moon, author David Gemmell writes: 
Heroes are people who face down their fears. It is that simple. A child afraid of the dark who one day blows out the candle; a women terrified of the pain of childbirth who says, "It is time..."
He continues, 
There's no shame in fear. But understand this--the coward is ruled by fear, while the hero rides it like a wild stallion.  
I guess then that a hero must master his fears.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Hero - what is it?

We're all familiar with the word, the idea or concept of the Hero. I am thinking of this word these days, a moment here or there to consider heroes of mine.  

Who or what are my heroes; what kind of character do I think of when thinking of heroes? 

It taking this thought further, I considered several beginnings to a series on this question.  The first is a song by Randy Travis, "Heroes and Friends".  

"Heroes and Friends"

Can one or another be both, a friend and hero too?  Have I ever known both in one, person?

I believe that this duo is possible; perhaps a lifelong friend is a hero (to you), for they have been there when you needed them--needed help, hope.  One may begin as just a hero or just a friend but then, BOOM, they become more....   

Can I or you be both to someone somewhere; can we offer that rare by highly-respected role of friend and hero too?   What is it in life that creates or conjures up enough courage and commitment to become both friend and hero?    How can we be the hero? 

Yet another quote to get this topic (question) going; Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn: 
Great heroes need great sorrows and burdens, or half their greatness goes unnoticed. It is all part of the fairy tale.  
Stop to consider and start to remember what it means to be a hero, great sorrow and great burden or sacrifice.  

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Power and Politcs - more still...

Besides the alliterative quality--even poetic--of these two words, is the bond between and among them; the two are inextricably linked, related and dependent.  

Where there is politics and power, there is always corruption and, left unchecked, a cabal or consort, criminals of high crimes and misdemeanors.   A famous, often cited, quote by John Stuart Mill, 
Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends than that good men should look on and do nothing. 
Power & Politics is as the dragon; that without a dragon slayer or otherwise those who stand in the gap on behalf of the land, all that remains is the shouting for those that compromised and were complacent--all resistance arrested or resting in their graves.     

It is true that the best government is that which governs least..., so said Thoreau; and when left to fester and foment, Power & Politics becomes pandemic. From the still striving, a true statesman, Ron Paul, 
When one gets in bed with government, one must expect the diseases it spreads. 
He also said,  "Let the rEVOLution begin," and when/as/if it does, then Politics & Power will know that dragon slayers are not dead yet, one or more who stand in the gap on behalf of the land.

Power - confronting the dragon

How does the dragon doom its domain, destiny?   The answer is simply that it, the dragon, is destined to die, to rise indubitably and indomitably and then decline whether dramatic, or by a slow debilitating case of serious heartburn , heartbroken.  

What is true of the dragon is that it will die just as all the dragons before it; that once fierce and formidable, it will lose any and all of those who could be--and perhaps once were--friends (if it ever had a friend).  The dragon dies in more than the physical, but of a broken heart, shattered by its deep insecurities and insistence on taking it all, everyone and everything.  Yes, the dragon is insatiable and thus does not have a means or method to give or even express gratitude. 

Who or what is the dragon?  

"Good-reads", a Website of quotations, offers much on the beast or behemoth, whether words of tribute or terror; but the dragon is finally and fully unto itself; one with whom the figurative world will fight, fear and not forget.   The dragon is does not have to look the part, as with the illustration above, but nevertheless be the part.    

From C.S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader,
Sleeping on a dragon's hoard with greedy, dragon thoughts in his heart, he became a dragon.  
When and where one consorts with dragon(s), so too will they become one, of the same mind of madness, a masochistic, their heart diseased with death and destruction.  Dragons cannot love or otherwise are incapable of care, caring, except to the extent that it serves them for the moment. They (it) may appear to at first give a care--and even speak on it--but they always and forever default to death and destruction--devoid of the capacity for care, caring and compassion.  The dragon considers love as a fault, a weakness.  

Beware of the dragon's breath that breathes your last.

Deception - pawns on the chessboard

Most of familiar with the game of chess; the king, that though limited in movement, is crucial to the outcome ("check", "checkmate" or when defeat is inevitable, concession).  Then there is the pawn, the many pawns as the first line of defense and, on rare occasion, a hero of sort.  

For the most part, the pawns are "consumed" however, taken out by the more powerful:  the queen and her court of bishops, knights and rooks.  It is not random or remote that the pawn is physically a small piece and, though larger in number, is much limited in movement, often serving as "cannon fodder"; sacrificed for the sake of the kingdom, the potential to preserve power through victory.For some play(-ers), the pawn may actually seem to get in the way, more a liability than asset, simply filling a block on the board, blocking the better.  Pawns are at best expendable, sometimes considered a indefensible as a wall in modern days of warfare.

The pawn is the least powerful and, though larger in number, is the least...

If you were a chess piece, which one would you prefer to be?  You can choose a pawn, the poorest of all pieces or something else, grand and great though fewer in number.  

It seems that the pawn is, per the number, "only a number" and nothing more.  The play momentarily accepts the loss of a pawn and quite incidental, ignominious in the casualties of the conflict, competition.   

At one time or/and another, the pawn will be your part; you will be drawn in to the game (racket) only to realize (perhaps after much time and thought), that you were taken...sometimes still believing that you did, "the right thing."  You may beat yourself up over this, accepting or acknowledging that you were a fool, too taken for your own good or benefit; yet life and living will never fully release you from "playing the pawn" as long as you love, really love.  For what is love without sacrifices and what is sacrifice without trust that, if not for them (whomever "them" happens to be) that you did it (whatever the gift or sacrifice was) for "us" as it was.  

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Deception - Fooling thyself...and your own

Again, deception is more often about fooling ourselves; lying to ourselves about ourselves to please, for pity our pride, ourselves if not others too.  Our lives are reflected through smoke and mirrors so that what appears is, or is perceived, is not real, reality. 

One may think, say or act (as though they are entitled, have the right or otherwise are deserving) to play such games, first fooling self and then attempting to fool those about them, including family or their own.  

You're a liar to your family, familiar with lying and liking it!

Not that such deceit in nothing new under the sun; as with the ages, so too is deception one to one, one on one and one to others--even their own. 

In the Garden of Eden, Eve was deceived by Satan.  Among the earliest lineage of Jesus, Jacob deceived his brother Esau (and indeed, Jacob was much the deceiver).  Passing over many other accounts and occurrences, with often ugly outcomes, Judas Iscariot attempted to deceive Jesus only to realize some measure of the cost of betrayal.  

Yes, the world is replete with deceit and in these last days, such is on the rise thanks in part to the dissemination/distribution of information whether vetted or not, qualified as the truth or facts purported.   
In the later days, persons will deceive and be deceived, going so far as to reward those who do such things well.  One will turn against the other (to suggest marriage and family)
Who would do such a thing; who would lie to others so close--too close--without any apparent care of the costs let alone the feelings of the other, the relationship of the two?   Is/are such persons mentally ill, diagnosed or not with some disorder, or are they simply wicked, wrought with spiritual darkness?

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Looking for Deception

Deception is, well, deceptive; it is the result of false, fraud and faux, pretending a friend but in fact using and abusing, sometimes going so far as shifting the very condition of deception on naivety--not the nefarious underhandedness of the deceiver.   

You may be familiar with the question/joke, "How do you know when a politician is lying?" 

The answer:  "When they open their mouth (or speak)."  

But in truth, lies are often developed from the heart, through the mind and finally, as action in one form or another. One may spend much time, a process, in forming lies or, in the moment or impulse, do similar. With the former, such as conspiracy, much effort and energy is applied to ensure or to bake this mother of all lies until it is done, ready to serve. In the later, a flash in the pan, one simply fires-off lies as much as for their protection or preservation as anything else. 

Still, deception is more often applied to self first, if others to follow. Yes, we lie and cheat ourselves, tapping into our imagination to believe that which delights us, entertains us and otherwise aims to make us happy. One may believe in God as singular, merciful and loving, while denying the might and wrath clearly described in the scriptures.One wants to embrace the fairy tale that ends with "...and they live happily ever after", avoiding and even abhorring the reality that we live in a fallen world, replete with wicked and evil behavior, minds and hearts.

One of the most difficult to see, "Looking for Deception", is the perpetrator who poses as a victim, the proverbial wolf in sheep's clothing.  The one that deceives to such extremes will do everything to avoid or avert cause or blame, pretending and promoting their victim status  while concurrently carrying-out a conspiracy, using others to get what they think they want.  A deceiver of this degree will do and say anything and everything to keep their cover covered--fully convinced that they are just and right in doing so no matter the costs.  Their mental state or health further be demented, rendering them unable or incapable of the truth, acknowledging or admitting their ruse or racket.  

Be aware that such persons will chew you up and spit you out, as they slither along a path, inflicting poison with impunity.  

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Me and Nasty

Aldous Huxley said, 
I like being myself. Myself and nasty.
What did he mean, "myself and nasty"?  

First, this quote is an excerpt from Brave New World; a dystopian story, covered in summary in the Spark-Notes, the video link below.  

Brave New World - Spark Notes Summary

Well, that is/was much information; more than necessary to understand how or why one enjoys or at least is comfortable with being "NASTY". 

Being "NASTY", is perhaps being self-indulged; that is, doing anything and everything to please yourself, to momentarily satiate your passions, pleasures, however fantastical or false the stimuli, the sense of it.   

Life is, after all, about getting everything that you can whether by "honest means" or otherwise.  The world revolves around you and thus, it your right to seize it however...

It matters not how you get it as long as you get it.  It matter not whom or what it costs, but only that you get what you want, momentary though it be!   The costs, however measured, are irrelevant in view of your NASTY.  
"To Hell with the rest and what's best.  I am in it for me". 

Unmasking Deception - methods and mechanics

I find the attached video as fitting the bill when it comes to waking up and seeing the deception all about us. One may ask, 

"How do I know what's real and what's a lie. Where do I gain the confidence and clairvoyance to first see and then believe without doubt?"  

It is not easy--that's for sure--for among other things, constraints on our conscience, is the certainty that we cannot always or often be certain. 

Yes, we see it (whatever it is) but is seeing really believing?  We feel it by other senses but then, is it really as it appears?  And yes, I know that these questions and the subject is abstract and ambivalent, but so too is the deception, the art and science of it.  

What is better for you; to be the fool or to be wise, to be deceived or to recognize the con and say, 

"See ya--cannot believe ya!" 

Sometimes this is hard, requiring a great deal of courage and confidence; for to call-out deception is to invite a plethora of pain--as one who knows. 

 Mechanics of Deception

Leviathan lives too

Ever heard of "Leviathan"?  Who or what is/are the Leviathan but a beast of enormous size and strength, most probably unstoppable; as described in the Bible, both New and Old Testament.  

Does Leviathan live, whether figuratively or in actuality?  In the later, the seas house this creature (as before), but in the former, the spirit of this alleged creature goes everywhere, anywhere, where power and might--for the worse rather than better--roams the earth as a spirit(s), creating chaos and corruption among and within mankind.  

"Where the glory of God is," so too will Leviathan live, aiming to undo what God does, the grace and redemption of the Father through his son, Jesus.  Yes, Leviathan lives and roams about--just as in the days of Job (the person and oldest book of the Old Testament). 

Can Leviathan be conquered or is it eternal, indomitable? Considering that the glory of God invokes Leviathan, it hardly seems possible since, if any might slew the beast, it would be God, right? 

As it is, we still must serve someone or body and thus the question is, given that Leviathan lives, is "Whom do I serve?"  Do I/you serve God as a true servant or do we instead give room for Leviathan to enter, rendering confusion to our otherwise openness and obedience to God.  

Beware and be weary of the spirit of Leviathan, who is crafty and cutting, severing relationships with the twist of truths among other deception, disruption and destruction since the beginning to new and until....  Leviathan is always aimed to destroy with boundless power, not physical or natural but supernatural, evil in all element.   From Revelation 12:1-7, 
And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne, ...

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Amazing Grace - Who was William Wilberforce?

Who was this man of English birth?  Why, he was a tradesman and member of parliament that spent the better part of his adult life fighting for abolition of slavery.  Here is a brief from Wikipedia: 
Wilberforce was convinced of the importance of religion, morality and education. He championed causes and campaigns such as the Society for the Suppression of Vice, British missionary work in India, the creation of a free colony in Sierra Leone, the foundation of the Church Mission Society, and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. His underlying conservatism led him to support politically and socially controversial legislation, and resulted in criticism that he was ignoring injustices at home while campaigning for the enslaved abroad.
In later years, Wilberforce supported the campaign for the complete abolition of slavery, and continued his involvement after 1826, when he resigned from Parliament because of his failing health. That campaign led to the Slavery Abolition Act 1833, which abolished slavery in most of the British Empire

Another of my favorite films, Amazing Grace, is an account of his life. Here is the trailer.  

Amazing Grace William Wilberforce  

Wilberforce was a workhorse for a great cause against great odds.  

More to come. 

Silver Lining Playbook - a great film about recovery

I have watched this film several times (maybe more), but why?  What is it about this film that I find fascinating; is it the recovery of a him/her from a personal crisis or is it more, maybe a love story or something else?  

Here is a clip, near the beginning of the story, when Pat meets Tiffany at her sister's house.

Silver Lining Playbook - a "strategy" 

Before the evening however Pat is counseled by his Psychologist to "get a strategy"; to develop a way of coping with the reactions or stress brought on by the combination of his medical history and his crisis; the loss of his wife through an affair.   

What I like about the film is how these try to help each other, though the effort is clouded in deception; he wanting her to give a letter to his wife (who has a restraining order against him) and she who want him, well, as her lover, perhaps next husband (her husband having died in the line of duty).  

Atop of their messed-up lives is his family and, in particular, his father (played by Robert De Niro) who happens to have some behavioral issues of his own and, in that, an agenda too.   In this scene, the father has lost a crucial bet on his hometown football team and is blaming Pat for it all.  In the midst of this family mayhem, Tiffany arrives--mad as Hell--to not only establish her cause but to set Pat's father straight, as to the relationship and vicariously the Philadelphia Eagle's performance/record.  

Silver Lining PLaybook - "I got to say I do"

His family has dealt with "Pat's problem" for many years but, by his own admission, the father largely overlooked it, playing favorite to Pat's old brother who is apparently more successful, seemingly "normal".    

The film or story combines humor, romance and the drama of two (or more) lives in the midst of serious matters. Through it and with it, the two are are able give and receive help in degrees, step by step, discovering love in the process.  It is a beautiful story. 

Deindustrialization in Dayton

As one employee laments (see link below), 
When the plant closed here, economically, it was devastating.
Dayton Ohio once produced more autos than any other city except Detroit.  In/as de industrialization took its toll, not only did folks lose good jobs but they lost hope too. 

As the video describes, all the adverse consequences of under and unemployment follow undoing a once thriving, vibrant city.  

Deindustrialization in Dayton OH

Dayton is only one of such cites, communities, that have seen its better days, but is among many.  Sure, "things change", and that just as this city rose to some peak of prosperity, it evidently declined.  One might quip, 
What goes up must come down
As the lyrics go, Blood, Sweat and Tears.  

I share this story simply because I have witnessed firsthand the effects of de-industrialization, globalization, the outsourcing and off-shoring of jobs.  I have spoke to some impacted by such economic and communal changes.   Members of my family, some that prospered during better times, might very well be the last to experience upward mobility and all the opportunity afforded then, as it was.  

More to come.

Cold Mountain - a novel made film about the ravages of war

Cold Mountain is another favorite of mine; that besides the backdrop of the U.S. Civil War, the story (or stories) capture the personal plight of war whether directly engaged on the front lines or on the home front, dealing with reports of death and other dire consequences.  Yes, this story of stories is about a mountain town that survives the war amid countless sacrifices and loss.  

I first read the novel and then saw the film; both intrigued me but, as films offer,both the soundtrack and vivid images atop the sensational acting, it continues to intrigue me. About the story (stories), first the plot, a heroes journey:   a young man (Inman) from this villiage is thrust into war, joining a supposed eligible for North Carolina's part in the Confederacy.  Reluctantly leaving behind a new found love (Ada), he  nevertheless fights, able to survive years of in field battle, but finally is wounded and sent to a back line hospital on the Carolina coast.  Here, he receives one of only few of the many letters that Ada wrote, a much dated account of her own tragedies and plights of war followed with a plea for him to "come home". 

In the months to follow, Inman travails many obstacles along a path to the mountains of west North Carolina, but also receives help here and there as he runs from the home guard and gradually heals from his wounds, physical and otherwise.  Arriving finally to Ada's farm, he discovers that the local home guard has wreaked misery and added hardship to the already distressed village.  In the climax, Inman kills the home guard while dying himself, but not before he is reunited with his love.   Here is that clip, 

Cold Mountain - Inman Returns from War
War is terrible and tragic; it never leads to peace and it always creates destruction and death.  By definition, war is a failure of policy--yet we cannot seem to get over it, work through it or otherwise move beyond it.   As one WWII veteran recently said to me, 
War is a terrible thing. It's a shame that we cannot stop it.
More to come. 

Deception - Propaganda or other poppycock

Let's faces the facts; that facts are often disregarded, directly or indirectly omitted as the method of expedience--where the end justifies the means--is applied. Yes, the truths or facts on matter as to bolstering the presupposition of the powers at be; otherwise, facts are annoyance at the least and a risk at the most.   With expedience, the execution, why should such facts and figures really matter?  

Propaganda is systems designed to influence and inspire persons, the populous; promoting/publishing and popularizing ideas, usually political, toward a cause. The "science" originated through an American Psychologist, Edward Bernays, as public relations to include publications such as, Crystallizing Public Opinion (1923) and Propaganda (1928).  Goebbels of the Nazi party used these publications in the design of Nazi systems of the 1930's.   

Here is an Introduction to Propaganda, 

Introduction - Propaganda 

Deception and propaganda go hand in glove; that deception is at the core of these systems, aimed influence and inspire persons into action (or inaction) but finally and always to control a collective. These systems or mechanisms are part and parcel for war, aimed to foment action through fears, but also used for commercial purposes (advertising/marketing) and even among persons, one to the other but always for the purpose of control/power--in this last case, to manipulate or persuade, rather than force, action. One may even so far as to appear sorry or apologetic if they think this will persuade those they aim to control of the worthiness of the matter, mission. 

I mention that many in Nazi Germany would persuaded or convinced on the premise or experience that the Nazi party helped them out of economic depression, dire unemployment and despair.  To learn more about why the German people followed their fuhrer because he(they) provided jobs. To learn more about this situation read They Though They
Were Free, Milton Mayer.  Here is a summary: 
First published in 1955, They Thought They Were Free is an eloquent and provocative examination of the development of fascism in Germany. Mayer’s book is a study of ten Germans and their lives from 1933-45, based on interviews he conducted after the war when he lived in Germany. .

Friday, January 25, 2019

Decepiton - dividing the flock...and culling the herd

In a previous posting, the sheep served a similar purpose; those too misinformed and/or complacent to avoid the trappings of deceit.  Even the supposed leader, a sheep dog, can find itself going upstream or against the surge when the wolves show up.  Yes, the sheep will soon falter in their trust of one given their fear of another and, against their best interest, will go the way the Dodo bird or some other creature of lesser will or way. 
Winston Churchill let be known that, 
When there is not enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you. 
The two faces and many facets of the deceiver is like that; playing the part of a friend, even lover, while otherwise working against you, always and finally for control and power. 

Often it not so much the few who mastermind acts of evil but those agents who do the dirty work, executing the planning of the few.  One example comes from John Perkins, author of Confessions of an Economic Hitman; how he and others brokered deals with the leaders of foreign nations on behalf of the state and corporations, effectively extorting the leaders to enable "the few" to colonize their resources while riddling them with financial peonage.  He says,
Fear and debt, the two most powerful tools of empire. 
It is fear that, after everything else, is the means to dividing the flock, the precursor of culling the herd. The most effective method to this (divide and conquer) in a democracy (or relatively free society) is not by brute force but through deception, duping the many to believe falsehoods and to deny or disregard facts, truth.  

The most effective way to control (dis-empower) a person is to first dupe them into believing that you have their best interest in mind, and the second, when the first fails, is finally fear of one sort or another.  

Deception - and love, yes, love

One relationship marked by deception is that of romance, physical and sexual intimacy, and even love and marriage.  Oscar Wilde said, 
Deceiving others: this is what the world calls romance.  
But the, we often want to trust based only on sight, so says Zoe Marriott,
People trust their eyes above all else--but most people see what they wish to see, or what they believe they should see, not what is really there.
To describe it once again, this time in the flesh, is that deception and the possibility that  beauty may appear only skin deep is real--while ugliness runs deep...or at least all the signs that TRUST is not possible however ignored or overlooked. 

Mind you, there are misunderstandings, miscues and mystery in the making of relationships, especially those bound by physical attraction, sexual desire and the like; but finally and always, no healthy relationship remains in the presence of deception but only lies over lasting love. 

The Bible offers stories of such relationships, steeped in deception, such as: 
  • Samson and Delilah - she deceives him, cutting his hair and thus, removing the source of his strength which leads to his death
  • Abraham and Sarah - he deceives her, his wife, at some time in their journey, claiming her to be his sister when confronted by Pharaoh, who desires her
  • David and Bathsheba - not directly aimed at Bathsheba but certainly her marriage with Uriah, David plots her husbands death--among other things--attempting to hide his adultery with her
And often referred to verse from Jeremiah, 
The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?
Yes, the Bible is replete with stories and examples of deception, the heart as inherently deceiving.deceptive, and plenty of warnings about the dangers of deception, trapped or trapper. More of this will be covered later in the series. 

Persons will seek and strive for what they want--what they think they need--and go to great length to get it, never mind the relationships that they invariably lose or lance along in the process.   Sometimes this deception is mild, perhaps misunderstanding amid sincere hearts, but other times (and more this mater) is intentional deception, lies in the midst of lured and lustful feelings.   

Be wary and beware of deception; left to your own devices (or vices) it will destroy.  

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Deception - the deceiver's two sides

Deceivers never call their actions deception or anything similar, subtle and sinister, but often use  platitudes such as policy, diplomacy and even compassion (and love)--anything positive as part of the deception, another layer of their web. 

The deceiver appears to be well intended however insensitive, insidious, their actions.They appear to have your best interest in mind while figuratively stabbing you in the back. If an individual, the deceiver is generally incapable of accepting, let alone acknowledging,  responsibility for their actions; that whether they suffer from a psychotic illness such as Narcissism or are spiritually wicked, control /power is the common cause for their actions.  

For a group, organizations or institutions, the inner workings and myriad of relationships multiply the matter, means and methods; thus, compulsion, collusion and conspiracy are rampant--power most poignant, pervasive  You can see and sense this in the present partnering of media and the state, where deception is simply status quo, propaganda.  They are as thick as thieves. Nay, they are thieves.

The Great Deceiver is Satan, who first enters Biblical history at The Fall, deceiving Adam and Eve into eating of the fruit from the forbidden Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and consequently, falling from grace, the garden.   Satan has power beyond human comprehension, the practice of such schemes described in numerous scripture but more notably with the temptation of Christ.  Here, Satan is truly able offer Christ  something if he will obey; and should Christ comply, then mankind is left hopelessly without forgiveness, redemption and salvation.   Jesus comprehends this offering in TRUTH and therefore rejects the offer, offering scripture instead. 

The deceiver will, as already said, mix truth with lies--all the more convincing to those under threat. They will appear well intended, even good, but again, be wary and beware of the end effect, control/power over you.   

More to come.

Deception - the face and farcity of it

Healthy relationships are built on TRUST; without TRUST, no healthy relationship can survive. 

Deception is all about us, within us and beyond us; it pervades our humanity from The Beginning, when Satan tempted the two, convincing her to eat of the apple.  Generation after generation, no matter the culture or other condition, deception is present.  

The condition is so critical that this second entry is but one of a series devoted to deception, the bane of any meaningful relationship, personal or public, private or published.   

Where deception find ultimate power is in not only fooling, misleading or misinforming, but also shifting the blame, guilt or shame, on the deceived using terms such as naive, gullible and the like, along with the prevailing position that the deceiver is never wrong or otherwise is beyond blame.  Deception gives all advantage to the deceiver, both the effect and the cause.   

When two or more deceive another, they conspire or conduct a conspiracy; and using all available means and methods, they will co-conspire to hide heinous acts against others--even murder of the innocent, the helpless.  Groups commit deception under the guise of policy or diplomacy, expressing and promoting good intentions while spreading their web of deceit, undermining other groups in the conquest, confiscation.

Deception is without a match when left unchecked, when the person(s) are not called to account, their actions condemned, their acts and crimes, punished.  Their lies left to fester, the wounds made by a fouled soul, deceivers will flourish simply because they will continue to deceive for as long as it works for them.  

Lies upon lies, deception views TRUST and TRUTH as character flaws, weaknesses and vulnerabilities. Yet at the same time, deception seeks out these "flaws" as opportunities, the means to power--getting what they want whatever the costs. If ever called-out or questioned, the deceiver will deny it or, if this does not work, will move-on leaving a wake of damage and destruction in their path.  Deceivers seldom accept responsibility for their actions.

In their bag of tricks, deceivers will deploy/depicted weakness, playing the victim, in order to can an advantage or leverage with the law.  Using one of "The Art of War, deceivers will adopt and apply to, 
Appear weak when you are strong...
They will also cleverly combine a pound of lies with an ounce of truth, once again acting on what Alfred Tennyson described, 
A lie that is half-truth is the darkest of all lies.
Beware and be weary of the deceiver, deception, the deadly spider's web.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Straddling the fence

Straddling the fence, to mean that you are unable or unwilling to take a stand, one side or another; silent and passive, without convictions or passions.  

Who or what controls you, your opinions, actions and all? 

Elie Wiesel wrote,
I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silences encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.
The time is coming when the decision to straddle will not be so easy, convenient or comfortable;  eventually, you must make choices--hard decisions--and the consequences will be costly, critical and even catastrophic--the longer the wait, the more difficult the decision(s), .  

Howard Zinn said, "It is hard to stand still on a moving train." 

To End an Eagle - the eagle as an icon


At this writing,the latest of completed stories, To End an Eagle, comes to mind; a heroes' journey of an eagle, Elli, who travels to ends of the world searching for his eaglets, his mate, only to finally give up his body, passing to the spiritual realm. 

One of the grievances of Eli, as he learns of the "unnatural" world, is how his image has been (and is) used as a icon; some sort of symbol apparently to represent things of honor, nobility and general goodness.  Eli cannot fully comprehend the wide span between these claims and actual practices, that is, the hypocrisy of these supposed higher beings, namely humans.   

Historically, the eagle has represented the Romans, Nazi Germany, the United States and much more--always to suggest that they represent qualities of the eagle, its superiority and strength among its species and more. In the chapter, "Tranquility", I write (Eli speaking): 

The old Romans traveled with routes made out of rock and leaders made out of the noble, like me. Their legions carried images, the Aquila that looked like me.  It was supposed to be an honor to carry the image but a most egregious event to lose it. The eagle image was iconic as though it be all that they worshiped and adored.  It was only an image and, more than likely, not the single item of sacredness, with all the things worshiped and hoped one god to the next. (p.47)
Still, there remains an eagle in me not lost altogether by the losses of life and living or the allure and attraction of the age; one not imagined or iconic but real and relevant.  What about you; do you have any eagle?  (p.48)  
Eli realizes the contrast (chasm) between him (or the natural) and the unnatural of the world that uses the eagle's image yet fails to hold to, or represent, the eagle's nature. His eyes, however sharp his vision, is opened to the fraud of the unnatural world (the world constructed by man), the corruption and criminality.

What about you?  
Whether you see 20/20 or less, how much do you really see, sense? 

The New Politics of Sex...Stephen Baskerville - Gender

My intermittent but continued writing on Stephen Baskerville's latest book is driven on the interest of this (these) subjects, topics and issues.  Certainly "Sex-based Politics" is nothing new, exotic or erotic, but it is an area for which I have been part of.  I

I must emphasis  (again) that the dangers that await a justice system that punishes and prosecutes based only on one witness, is corrupted; for the simple fact is that when a witness is allowed to say anything--without testing the veracity of their statements--then they will say everything that their conscience allows. Simply put, a witness will lie if they relieved from any repercussions.    When the accused is allowed no defense--effectively blocked by the courts--there again, the courts are corrupted.  

One must face and feel the distinct and definitive condemnation that comes via expedience, where the end justifies the means, only to realize that Due Process is dead, merely a myth or legend and nothing more.  As courts have and do default to expedience, circumventing the measures aimed to protect justice, they are guilty of intentionally failing to uphold justice. When/as the broader systems are inherently partial--in the context, to gender--they are  guilty of prejudice. Sadly, the justice system has come to such times, questioning the underlining intentions of the state, the natural patriarchy of family. 

What I say and believe on these matters is not to push the scale to the other extreme but rather to underscore the need of Due Process and impartiality as opposed to the current status for the protection of family, as described in The New Politics of Sex, (p.36).  
Our concern is with government policy.... The full dimensions of the family crisis can only be understood politically because the family is the pivotal intermediary between the individual and the state. Many basic questions raised by political philosophy are pointless without accounting for the family. [] Family decline carries serious implications for civic freedom in ways that likewise are not always obvious.
For me, this matter has always been about family, my family and the many that are dismantled by "government policy" ranging from no-fault and unilateral divorce to single-parent custody promoted through Title IV-D of the Social Security Act. 

The short on Title IV-D

 More to come.