Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Excerpted from C.G. Jung's 'The Psychology of Kundalini Yoga' courtesy Gary Sparks

"[T]he next cakra, svadhisthana, must be the unconscious, symbolized by the sea, and in the sea is a huge leviathan which threatens one with annihilation."

"[T]his is the symbolism of all initiation cults: the awakening out of muladhara and the going into the water, the baptismal fount with the danger of ... the devouring quality or attribute of the sea."

"In the next center is the makara [crocodile-like creature / sea dragon, Encyclopaedia Britannica], the leviathan. So in crossing from muladhara to svadhisthana, the power that has nourished you hitherto shows now an entirely different quality: what is the elephant on the surface of the world is the leviathan in the depths. The elephant is the biggest, strongest animal upon the surface of the earth, and the leviathan is the biggest and most terrible animal down in the waters. But it is one and the same animal: the power that forces you into consciousness and that sustains you in your conscious world proves to be the worst enemy when you come to the next center. For there you are really going out of this world, and everything that makes you cling to it is your worst enemy. The greatest blessing in this world is the greatest curse in the unconscious. So the makara is just the reverse: the water elephant, the whale dragon that devours you, is the thing that has nourished and supported you hitherto—just as the benevolent mother that brought you up becomes in later life a devouring mother that swallows you again. If you cannot give her up she becomes an absolutely negative factor—she supports the life of your childhood and youth, but to become adult you must leave all that, and then the mother force is against you. So anyone attempting to leave this world for another kind of consciousness, the water world or the unconscious, has the elephant against him; then the elephant becomes the monster of the underworld."

Sunday, August 28, 2011


Excerpted from C.G. Jung's 'The Psychology of Kundalini Yoga' courtesy Gary Sparks

"So we are all in the roots, we are upon our root support. ('Root support' is the literal translation of muladhara.)"

"Therefore we may assume that the way out of our muladhara existence leads into the water."

"That woman entangled in the roots is just entangled in her personal life."

"[M]uladhara is here, the life of this earth, and here the god is asleep."

"Kundalini ... means to separate the gods from the world so that they become active ... ."

"[T]he convictions of the muladhara world are very necessary. It is exceedingly important that you are rational, that you believe in the definiteness of our world, that this world is the culmination of history, the most desirable thing. Such a conviction is absolutely vital. Otherwise you remain detached from the muladhara—you never get there, you are never born, even. There are plenty of people who are not yet born. They seem to be all here, they walk about—but as a matter of fact, they are not yet born, because they are behind a glass wall, they are in the womb. They are in the world only on parole and are soon to be returned to the pleroma where they started originally. They have not formed a connection with this world; they are suspended in the air; they are neurotic, living the provisional life."

"[I]t is utterly important that one should be in this world, that one really fulfills one's entelechia [the urge of realization, the gem of life which one is. Otherwise you can never start Kundalini; you can never detach. ... You must believe in this world, make roots, do the best you can ... so that [some] trace is left of you. For you should leave some trace in this world which notifies that you have been here, that something has happened. ... [I]f you touch the reality in which you live, and stay for several decades, if you leave your trace, then the impersonal process can begin. You see, the shoot must come out of the ground, and if the personal spark has never gotten into the ground, nothing will come out of it; no ... Kundalini will be there."

"[I]n muladhara we are just identical. We are entangled in the roots, and we ourselves are the roots. We make roots, we cause roots to be, we are rooted in the soil, and there is no getting away for us, because we must be there as long as we live."

"I want to call your attention to the animal symbolism of which I have not yet spoken. You know that the series of animals begins in muladhara with the elephant that supports the earth, meaning that tremendous urge which supports human consciousness, the power that forces us to build such a conscious world. To the Hindu the elephant functions as the symbol of the domesticated libido, parallel to the image of the horse with us. It means the force of consciousness, the power of will, the ability to do what one wants to do."

"[M]uladhara is the symbol of our present psychic situation, because we live entangled in earthly causalities. It represents the entanglement and dependence of our conscious life as it actually is. Muladhara is not just the outer world as we live in it; it is our total consciousness of all outer and inner personal experiences."


"The origins of alchemy can be traced back to Hellenistic Egypt. After the collapse of the empires of antiquity, it found safe haven in Arabic culture until returning from there to medieval Europe. Alchemists, sort of "pre-chemists," literally tried to turn some worthless piece of material into gold or another precious substance. They cooked, chopped, baked and prayed, recording their recipes in the symbolic language of a prescientific mind.

Jung studied their writings as metaphors to understand how the psyche tries to heal itself through transforming the difficult part of our personality into something of value and sustenance - through the inner healing process, in other words. Both the alchemists' imagining the goings-on in the piece of material they thought they were transforming and Jung's observing the goings-on in a psychologically transforming personality evidenced the creative, goal-oriented process of fragmentation and recentering." [J. Gary Sparks]

Saturday, August 27, 2011

let's recognize the interesting promise breaking forth as jack layton returns to the elementals... suddenly, the old games are up. its why some are also extremely unnerved by the awakening, the false-ideology cessation.

with the passing of this political activist, the vulnerability but also our own power that he put us in touch with completely transforming us, we now live in a new order where we no longer need elections to defeat the wrong kind of government, we just need the ideas and humanitarian and mother-earth-friendly vision and legions of happy warriors, visible every day and in every way, constructively insisting on the better world we now know is distinctly canadian, and distinctly possible...

coverage of the funeral tends toward the given that Jack Layton's time was unfairly cut short. i have to completely disagree. i think Layton and the fates had an exquisite sense of timing. just look how fluently his death and our mourning experience are serving and co-creating this interesting promise of which i spoke. when you live devoted to a certain vision on mortality and morality based on the singularity of all manifestation, you want your death to count for something as well, and on that count, if jack layton did want, through his letter to canadians, to touch people sufficient to wake them up to pressing realities and their beautiful compassionate natures, his final hopes have borne fruit.

environmental sustainability that serves to end hunger and poverty. peace from violence and terror and financial crime. education, employment, preventative medicine, national health care, personal freedom, community responsibility, highest quality food and water supplies and support for progressive natural medicines, art and culture, these were just a few of the seed values jack layton worked tirelessly for. many canadians took great security from his presence in various tableaus of government. it meant at least there was one person they could trust to front these values at the table. now that he's gone and there isn't, engagements of citizen intelligence in the service of these principles might just hit an all time high. like the crowds called out when his casket came home, "Thank you Jack."

Friday, August 26, 2011

while i was walking back along queen street west from city hall, i was thinking, the mayoralty of David R Miller would not have been possible without the inroads plowed by Jack Layton... everywhere i looked in this city today, i saw the house that Jack built... xo

Thursday, August 25, 2011

spontaneous layton memorial, nathan phillips square, toronto

photo courtesy jackman chiu
‎"Dear conservative Canada: please just relax. I know this is driving you mental but let Olivia demonstrate dignity and grace, let young progressives feel sad and heartbroken, let it happen. You have your majority. Soon we'll be back to the game of wealth protection. But for a couple of days, let this crowd remind us that there is room in politics for a lesson in how we treat each other." - Tom Jokinen

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

a response to the National Post column: "Layton’s death turns into a thoroughly public spectacle"

Christie Blatchford, a pro-war, pro-police, conservative propagandist writing under cover of popular journalism and op-ed commentary at the National Post, has published a particularly vapid and sensationalized attack on progressive values and human connectivity.

Under the lock 'n load banner of cutting edge tough talk about maudlin, if not subversive, emotional displays and the scam opportunism of a life devoted to public service, Blatchford characterized the death of Jack Layton as "a thoroughly public spectacle." The naive and indecorous Canadian public is evidently too soft for the job of repressing their troublesome and sentimental concern for one another, neither can it be trusted to discriminate between fantasy, reality and the ideas worth having that Blatchford proposes to be her particular expertise.

Written just 10 hours after his passing on Monday, the columnist was evidently mobilized by the prospect of a groundswell of national mourning and bittersweet admiration as the news of Layton's untimely death spread in units of shock and disbelief. Decrying Layton as a blatant political opportunist, Blatchford is guilty of her own accusations. Using her position as mouthpiece for backwater conservative values dressed up in practical urbanity to mislead and confuse the issues, this carefully crafted effort to manipulate political and private sentiment along knee-jerk, bipartisan lines falls flat in the shallows.

We begin with the tacit suggestion that Layton is somehow suspect because he pursued a professional life with vigor and commitment, happily living "his entire adult life in the public eye and who was a 24/7 politician who was always on." So what? Would you say the same of the many other professions that could easily be characterized this way?

The columnist wants to quibble with an NDP MP's comment that Layton, "gave his life for his country." For promulgators of conservative culture, only war and violence have stock in the sacrifice queue. To suggest that Layton's lifelong "24/7" commitment to political engagement and governance was something of a willing sacrifice for his country would be to besmirch the glorification of those who follow orders, don uniforms, abandon their critical rigor and ultimately loose their lives servicing the violent campaigns of hatred and fear that Blatchford and her ilk find so satisfying and virtuous.

That Layton worked well in public formats and had a natural, likeable ease on camera or on foot is cause for Blatchford to invite subtextual speculation as to his character and motives. Anyone who's good at getting under your skin, who works resolutely, giving their all to the path they choose is someone who's not quite playing the game of a sheeple society and so is dangerous. People with polish or style or who seem well-prepared invite resentment from those who really would rather dial it in. Layton smiled too much, persisted too long, gave consistently good soundbyte, and struck a handsome figure. Worst of all, he showed his care and concern for society and its advancement on his sleeve. The guilelessness and charm of these qualities, especially Layton's indefatigable aspect, made reactionaries uncomfortable. You're not supposed to try too hard or care too much about anything, unless its slandering 'multi-culti' socialism, inciting ethnic bigotry and hatreds, curtailing freedom, suppressing ideological evolution, or consolidating wealth and power for selfish purpose at grave cost to the planet and our persons. Casting himself as he did in tireless opposition to these nightmare refrains are what truly made Layton "singular."

The Blatchford mockery of the gravitas that swept the country and a good majority of its working media, who routinely had contact with Layton over the years, is posturing machismo at its worst. Ridiculing the response of grief, shock, and sadness has only one aim, to ensure that people on the fence who are beginning to have questions about our unsustainable ways of life and the fatuous policies of our governments are not lured into the tide of affect sweeping the nation, not galvanized by Layton's example into new involvements in their communities and families.

That PM Harper delivered a zero-charisma, out of touch and meaningless statement, struggling to keep the corners of his mouth from turning up into a nervous grin as he contemplated the wide berth he believes fate has just handed him, is somehow morphed into the height of tact. That his handlers had the ingenious idea to make sure that the Layton announcement was not the sole order of business for that particular scrum, sidebaring it with gratuitous references to the death of a six year old girl in a blatant attempt to subordinate and sweep aside the surge of sorrow and admiration for Layton, is lauded as the height of good taste, leadership and reasonableness.

But its Blatchford's attack on Layton's dying missive to Canadians that's so galling. The fact that two days before death Layton's thoughts were on his legacy and the future of his life's work as he lay preparing for singularity is offered into evidence as remarkable for its "canny" relentlessness, "a gimlet eye on all the campaigns to come." In truth, it was a high point of achievement and a gesture of incomparable grace under pressure. It demonstrates that the seat of his action in life was genuine concern for others, seeing himself as but one pearl on a chain of actions that can lead to important future developments. To make it seem that something sinister and trite was afoot that Layton took some time as things got grave to enlist the help of a couple people to put his thoughts together for the sake of his own closure and peace as much as ours is truly unconscionable.

I, for one, am extremely gratified that Layton didn't pull his punch about the disgrace of our fallen reputation in the world at the hands of the dullard and fascist "Government of Stephen Harper." The charge of 'vainglorious' for the remark, "All my life I have worked to make things better," is the bitter backwash of the rationalist, materialist worldview that delights to drown your dreams of truth, goodness and beauty in vitriol.

Blatchford chastises Canadians for being so fey as to shed a tear, or collect on the streets and outside constituency offices in order to memorialize the man who gave them hope.

As Joshua Errett writes in NOW Magazine, "When a police officer dies, as Blatchford wrote in the Globe on January 13, a motorcade of police cars lining the highway is an acceptable tribute. When a police officer dies, a public outpouring of grief is beyond criticism. The same applies in military deaths. It would appear her simplistic rules evaporate when a uniform is involved. (Or, more like it, when the politics align.)"

Layton is allowed to come into a mere hint of his technicolour courage only once and its in the context of his personal journey with cancer. Even then, Blatchford snipes that everyone battles bravely with cancer, not just Layton. For a 'journalist' who prides herself on being politically incorrect, its a sign of her limited experience with anything other than her own dogma that she fails to realize her own error. Not everyone battles bravely with cancer. Most, locked into the high-tox low-yield of conventional medicine are so weakened and fearful, they don't handle it well at all, and that's the inconvenient truth. Layton's forward-looking optimism was remarkable and noteworthy and sets an almost impossible standard for most people to live up to. The fact he stayed true to his choice to live in joy, contentment, harmony and love even as the disease escalated was the single greatest gift by example he might have given us. That Blatchford claims this as mere strategy and cleverness, that it was not spirit or quality of soul, but cagey artifice that led Layton to raise his cane to the level of symbolic asset, is repellent.

Christie Blatchford and broadsheet culture are quite possibly the most odious promulgators of philistine brainwashing ever gifted the enemies of peace, freedom, nurture, or culture in Canada. The military-corporate complex who's interests they represent want to posit everything in terms of power dynamics and fear. Thru that lens, anything which touches the heart or extolls immanent values like love, community, or nurture are to be derided as inferior, desperate as they are to posture like tough guys, smirking in the face of so-considered feminine weaknesses like emotional displays or concern for the welfare of others and the world.

The fascist stacked deck now at play intends to make unilateral shifts in this perceived vacuum of power. Some are already predicting the progressive movement will find itself in the wilderness for many years. The real political opportunists want to ensure that there's as little tolerance as possible for any display of passion lest it sweep the country, fueled by the ideas Layton led with and the concern we share with him for the dreams of justice and peace that set every great struggle in motion.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Cowherd and Weaving Girl
[Chinese Folk Story: www.chinaculture.org]

Long ago, there was a very poor but clever, diligent and honest boy who was orphaned at an early age. One day, he adopted an abandoned, old buffalo that proved to be very loyal to him and relieved the boy of hard labor in the fields. The two were inseparable and had a very good relationship. Villagers from near and far came to know the boy as the Cowherd.

Meanwhile, the youngest of the seven celestial princesses, who had grown tired of the privileged and secluded life at the heavenly palace, longed for a life among the common people. Although her feelings were considered controversial, the girl was determined to pursue what she deemed was her own happiness. She sneaked out of the heaven and descended onto the earth to meet the Cowherd, with whom she had secretly fallen in love with in the heaven.

The two were married and had a lovely boy and a girl. While the Cowherd worked in the fields with his farm cattle, the princess weaved at home to help support the family. The villagers all admired her excellent weaving skills and even learned from her. The girl was known as the Weaving Girl.

The family lived moderately but peacefully and happily until the girl's celestial family realized that the princess was missing and traced her back to the village. (It is believed that one day in the heaven is equal to two earth years.)

Mad with rage, the Celestial Empress gave her daughter two choices: return to the palace or witness the destruction of her husband and offspring. The princess had no choice but to leave.

But the buffalo, who was very old and near death, suddenly started to speak, much to the astonishment of his bereaved owner. He told the Cowherd to use his hide as a vehicle to catch up with his wife. Reluctantly, the Cowherd placed his young son and daughter in two baskets carried by a yolk and sailed off to heaven.

Seeing that the Cowherd was gaining on them, the Empress took out her hair pin and drew a big river across the sky, known to the Chinese as the Silvery River (the Milky Way in the West), to drive a wedge between them.

However, all the magpies in the world, deeply touched by the story, came to their rescue. Every year on the seventh day of the seventh month, they would flock together to form a bridge so that the family could enjoy a brief reunion.

Friday, August 12, 2011

"The priest presents for consideration a compound of inherited forms with the expectation (or at times, even the requirement) that one should interpret and experience them in a certain authorized way, whereas the artist first has an experience of his own, which he then seeks to interpret and communicate through effective forms. Not the forms first and then the experience, but the experience first and then the forms." [Joseph Campbell]

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Sex engaged for mere sensationalism degenerates into a field of judgement, just as a preoccupation with bionic-levels of reasoning can lead to mere opinionatedness.

mass animal

There's a billboard on the streets that really sums Neptune's diffusion into Pisces, it goes something like, "hug a stranger. if you go back far enough, we're all related..." i really like this sentiment, and this new awareness of our interdependency, our inescapable involvement with each other purcolating to surface in the mass animal. In somewhat the same way, this article posits that if you scratch far enough down into a person, if you persist long enough to touch a naked irritant, people are capable of all the same things, everyone with their own trigger. Which behooves me to wonder, that being the case, should we not try to work for the best then? If you can call down the lowest form of hell and reactive affect out of others when you expect the worst, why not bring out the world's finer qualities?

"Drug use changes the brain. Primates that aren’t predisposed to addiction will become compulsive users of cocaine as the number of D2 receptors declines in their brains, Dr. Volkow noted. And one way to produce such a decline, she has found, is to place the animals in stressful social situations.

A stressful environment in which there is ready access to drugs can trump a low genetic risk of addiction in these animals. The same may be true for humans, too. And that’s a notion many find hard to believe: Just about anyone, regardless of baseline genetic risk, can become an addict under the right circumstances.

from "Who Succumbs to Addiction, and Who Is Left Unscathed?" By RICHARD A. FRIEDMAN, M.D.
Published: August 1, 2011 in New York Times