mermaidcamp

mermaidcamp

Keeping current in wellness, in and out of the water

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June 2018 began with Jon Stewart returning to stand-up (with Dave Chappelle). It ended with a takeover of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, where the former Daily Show host addressed Donald Trump directly: “We will prevail.” For nearly six minutes in Thursday night’s episode, Stewart gave an unbroken monologue, touching on everything from the…

via A Fiery Jon Stewart Took Over ‘The Late Show’ To Address Trump Directly: ‘We Will Prevail’ — UPROXX

A Fiery Jon Stewart Took Over ‘The Late Show’ To Address Trump Directly: ‘We Will Prevail’ — UPROXX

June 29, 2018

#NaPoWriMo Follow The Lies

April 30, 2017 3 Comments

 

We must follow the money and follow the lies
The twists and turns of political intrigue
Burrow deeply into the system to hide from the wise
The secrecy and dishonesty of the big league
The veils must be lifted, the truth must be told
Our leaders deceive us, the facts they withhold
Our nation’s future hangs in the balance between
Those false facades, their mendacity, and coming clean

This month follow the poets at the #NaPoWriMo site to find new poetry, prompts, and contests. Try your hand a busting a rhyme.

cowboy

cowboy

 

Special Christianity

February 19, 2017 1 Comment

President Donald Trump embraces several political stances important to his conservative evangelical base. This includes support for “religious liberty” legislation and exempting evangelicals from laws upholding lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual rights. However, Trump does not demonstrate any of the beliefs that have historically characterized evangelicalism. Unlike the majority of American evangelicals, he does not…

via This 19th Century Movement Could Explain Donald Trump’s Faith — TIME

Willful Blindness vs Blind Justice

September 26, 2016 2 Comments

Our era in history may become known as the time of willful blindness. We have access to information from all over the world instantly, but people prefer to keep blind spots in place to protect status quo.  As individuals and as institutions we choose to stay in the dark because we either have no confidence in evolution and change, or we may benefit from the circumstances as they stand.

Can you think of an example of willful blindness that has played havoc with your life?  Can you remember choosing to stay blind yourself rather than standing up for the truth?  I am pretty sure all of us have stood on both sides of this line.  The saddest reason for staying willfully blind is a belief that one person can not change the course of history.  The desire to be ignorant is more dangerous than we might want to believe.

Fall

Fall

Say it in Latin, Celeritas et Veritas

June 15, 2016 6 Comments

sunset

sunset

Celeritas et veritas is my new favorite Latin phrase. It means promptness and truth. My father had a catch phrase by which he was known during his career which was, “Hurry every chance you get.”  I think hurrying is overrated, and truth underrated.  If I create my own coat of arms I will make Celeritous et Veritas my motto.  I have been very attached to my 3 P’s for decades. They are:

  • Punctuality
  • Politeness
  • Professionalism

In my mind these are the tenants that apply to best practices in business, pleasure, and civic matters.  I judge people on their ability to be prompt, allowing for circumstances. Some folks have erratic schedules and responsibility loads based on family or career.  I have been in that position myself, juggling multiple tasks.  We are not always able to be perfectly prompt, but if tardiness is a chronic habit politeness and professionalism are completely destroyed. Those who never show up on time are passively aggressive and are shunned in my world after a reasonable trail period.  All relationships would benefit from more promptness and truth.  What is your Latin motto, gentle reader?

Fire Escape

May 11, 2016 1 Comment

structure

structure

The flames swirl around the stairwell growing hotter
Banisters on fire fall, crashing melting decorative copper
Elegant mythology and theories made in the distant past
Have been blown to pieces shattering with a loud balst
Where is the mental door that leads to the blissful truth?
Does the fire escape lead us to the place of nothing to prove?

The Road to Truth is Paved by Politicians

May 10, 2016 4 Comments

vehicle

vehicle

“There are only two mistakes one can make along the road to truth; not going all the way, and not sharing.”
The Buddha

The truth for a grade school student is not the same as the truth for a senior citizen. Perspective is the reason we believe one thing or another at any given time.  Now we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face.  This means that we have more knowledge of the bigger picture as we mature and travel along the road to truth.  We should be acquiring sophistication and compassion for other living things as we become more visionary on this path.  Observation of the world political situation leads us to believe that we are failing at that mission. We have wandered off the route into unmapped territory.  Dark ignorance and evil intent appear to be taking ground in the battle against harmony and peace.

In all fairy tales and mythology the hero learns from tragic mistakes.  At the end of the story the moral is clear and the lesson is imprinted in the mind of the audience.  Once committed the hero has no choice.  Like Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita, the hero is taught mastery through trust in divine guidance in freaky circumstances.  He fights the symbolic battles he finds obstructing his way.  The hero is fated to go all the way. That is what distinguishes his character from others. He finishes the difficult job, then shares the wisdom he has found within his quest.  He saves the day and teaches an important social and political object lesson to the people.

Action without attachment was the lesson Krishna taught Arjuna during the heat of battle.  It is impossible to know the moral of a story until it ends, so it is imperative that the hero finish his job.  As I experience the presidential politics of 2016 I certainly hope there is a blue guy driving the chariot who will lead us into a surprise ending.  These are certainly freaky circumstances with strong catalytic tendencies.  How do you think this story will end, gentle reader?  Fill in the blank.

Insight

Insight

Veritas, Goddess of Truth

May 8, 2016 1 Comment

Harvard motto

Harvard motto

In ancient Rome the goddess Veritas ruled truth and sincerity. In Greece she was known as Altheia, and is mentioned in Aesops Fables:

Aesop, Fables 531 (from Babrius 126) (trans. Gibbs) (Greek fable C6th B.C.) :
“A man was journeying in the wilderness and he found Veritas [Aletheia, Truth] standing there all alone. He said to her, ‘Ancient lady, why do you dwell here in the wilderness, leaving the city behind?’ From the great depths of her wisdom, Veritas (Truth) replied, ‘Among the people of old, lies were found among only a few, but now they have spread throughout all of human society!’”
[N.B. This fable is preserved only in a Latin text. Aesop’s Aletheia (Truth personified) becomes Veritas in the Latin.]

Her father is Saturn in Rome and Zeus in Greece.  One creation story found in Aesop’s Fables tells us how she was created by Prometheus along with her arch enemy Mendacium.  She is the mother of virtue.  Her name is often included in mottos.  Harvard’s motto is simply Veritas.  The pursuit of truth was considered to be an essential part of Roman citizens’ duty.  To discern and tell the truth is a full time job.   Forgery and subterfuge are everywhere and always will be.  The difference between Veritas and Mendacium is feet.  Mendacity literally has not feet on which to stand.  Veracity walks away with conviction.

Aesop, Fables 530 (from Phaedrus Appendix 5) :
“Prometheus, that potter who gave shape to our new generation, decided one day to sculpt the form of Veritas [Aletheia, Truth], using all his skill so that she would be able to regulate people’s behaviour. As he was working, an unexpected summons from mighty Jupiter [Zeus] called him away. Prometheus left cunning Dolus (Trickery) in charge of his workshop, Dolus had recently become one of the god’s apprentices. Fired by ambition, Dolus (Trickery) used the time at his disposal to fashion with his sly fingers a figure of the same size and appearance as Veritas [Aletheia, Truth] with identical features. When he had almost completed the piece, which was truly remarkable, he ran out of clay to use for her feet. The master returned, so Dolus (Trickery) quickly sat down in his seat, quaking with fear. Prometheus was amazed at the similarity of the two statues and wanted it to seem as if all the credit were due to his own skill. Therefore, he put both statues in the kiln and when they had been thoroughly baked, he infused them both with life: sacred Veritas (Truth) walked with measured steps, while her unfinished twin stood stuck in her tracks. That forgery, that product of subterfuge, thus acquired the name of Mendacium [Pseudologos, Falsehood], and I readily agree with people who say that she has no feet: every once in a while something that is false can start off successfully, but with time Veritas (Truth) is sure to prevail.”
[N.B. This fable is preserved only in a Latin text. Aesop’s Aletheia (Truth personified) becomes Veritas in the Latin.]

These fables are useful to us during the campaign season during which a large part of our job is to distinguish truth from rhetorical and cultural beliefs.  It has never been more important for us to verify what we believe.

Willful Blindness and Inertia

May 4, 2016

sundial

sundial

As individuals and as groups we all have blind spots.  We accept beliefs without knowing all the facts simply because it is impossible to know all the facts.  Especially in institutional settings we excuse resistance to change as part of keeping to tradition.  If we look back in history we will notice that over time what was at one time considered to be true is now regarded as folly.  Tradition is one thing and resistance to reality is quite another matter.  Institutions protect dysfunctional operations not out of pride, but out of lack of awareness.  The set it and forget it attitude runs strong in institutions and government agencies.  It takes some tragic outcome to bring about change in some cases.  It is impossible to observe one’s own actions if one is willfully blind.  Thus, the blindness begets more blindness, becoming contagious.

What would Sir Isaac Newton think about the conditions that prevail?

  1. The body at rest is our culture, willfully ignoring our real situation
  2. The forces at work driving our society to move are all profit motivated
  3. Every profit has an equal and opposite loss to the environment/humans

No matter who wins the scary American presidential election now taking place, the financial and environmental imbalance will be rampant around the world.  Balance can only be restored through awareness and planning.  Without a plan we will careen ever closer to entropy.  The solution is pre-political.  Our awareness needs to cover all the people places and things with which we have contact.  This energy drain, or misappropriated energy, is needed for the good of the entire planet in order to restore some kind of equilibrium.  Plug the leaks in your own boat today.  We are taking on water and listing to port.

door in the darkness

door in the darkness

 

 

Three Kinds of Truth

April 10, 2015 5 Comments

iris only looks up

iris only looks up

There are three separate kinds of truth in the world:
Empirical has backing of indisputable evidence, proven fact
Cultural is believed by everyone in our group without question
Rhetorical is instilled through language, debated into being

iris only looks up

iris only looks up

These tributaries of veracity flow from different mountains:
Facts fall vertically from the highest peaks of observed reality
Tribal beliefs are instilled from birth with social hill climbing
The waterfall of rhetoric is loud and impressively massive

iris only looks up

iris only looks up

Politicians are dealers in rhetoric designed to sway opinions
Cultures have blind spots that obscure parts of the total picture
Empirical truth is obvious, amplifying proof, ignoring prejudice
The well of pure truth will quench your thirst only if you draw from it

NaPoWriMo 2015

NaPoWriMo 2015

Ride the poetry train with some very creative and witty folk here during the month of April.

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