Sunday, September 30, 2012

Freedom From Conformity (and Expectations)

Probably nothing heralds a new age as well as the ending of an old -- as societies and civilizations ebb and flow -- as the journals of their time.

The 20th century heyday was the power of the press to create whatever images they wished the public to believe -- and in 20th century Hawaii, that was the image of the new island state as a paradise that marketed so well as the jet age took off and made the previously remote islands accessible to all those who could afford those fares.

But popularity always comes with a price -- and the price of popularity is that prices go up -- while that which is not popular, stays low or practically free because each individual decides for themselves whether they value it or not.  There is no mass market that exists -- to easily make money for those who control that right, monopoly and powerful marketing organizations.

And that is the paradise a few have discovered -- anywhere in the world they have the basic freedom to do so.  Old societies were largely about control,  hierarchy, and deciding where everyone had to go -- in order for anyone to get there.  But now, the fewer people going to one popular destination, makes it far easier and cheaper for any one individual to go there, and find it in its pristine, unmanufactured, unspoiled and uncrowded state.

That was the world that was beginning to be lost -- of the big and powerful, and replaced by the small and nimble -- that could stop, and turn on a dime.  That was the power of the individual -- living and acting as individuals, and no longer needing to mass to exercise their power

That is a huge turning point for the world -- as individuals no longer have to dance to "whoever brung the music."  Each could now bring their own, and dance (or not) to their own.  Thus the world of the mass experience, became the highly individualized one in which each could create their individual paradise according to their own taste -- and not that there were ideal conditions for everyone, including wanting to be where everybody else was.

Each largely could create their own individual paradises, as technology became these personal handmaidens for doing so -- but it was no longer about controlling another (or every other), to provide that for them.  Life was no longer about the dominance and control of every other, but the supreme mastery and ascendancy over oneself -- to create the greatest vision and possibility of life for oneself, and not require that everyone had to live that way also.

That is the state of mind that is the freedom to choose from the many options of which they are aware by those of any means.  That is ultimately what makes one "rich" -- in the choices they have (or feel they have) available to them. The poorest among them, has no choices, or is thoroughly convinced he has no choices, but the one desperate one they must make -- and can imagine no other but the one way the powers that be, and hope always to remain so, tells them it must be -- whether that is the rail, the superferry, or the information superhighway.

Everyone in their scheme, must pass through their turnstile, after first purchasing their tickets -- to the only game in town.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Government Worker Salaries and Benefits More Than Half of the Cost of Government

That's why we need a president who knows how to run a country like a business -- instead of a lawyer who knows only how to get everything they can get only for their own client(s) which are the government workers themselves. no matter what the consequences and implications are for the country as a whole.

The reason there is no money for the schools and other government services, is because after paying off the government workers increasingly more for less productivity, there's no money "left over," to actually hold classes, and do anything government was originally created to do -- and not just to create a permanently entitled class of union members.

We just wish that the media would be on the side of the people, instead of seeing it as "their job," to re-elect the present lawyer as president, and defend the union brotherhood with their "solidarity" -- thinking that if one union gets more than everybody else, they will be next in line to get more than everybody else.

That is what has made Hawaii what it is today. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Starting Over Again

For those starting exercise programs after a long period of inactivity, or enhancing a lifelong maintenance program, the best way to go about it, is not to envision themselves a year or a month down that path, but merely to commit to one week -- and if done diligently, all subsequent progress will result from that.  So it is very important to get that first week right -- and that conditioning becomes a habit, that no amount of wishful thinking can substitute for.  That conditioning strategy works for just about any changes one wishes to make in their lives -- the one week commitment.

Although that sounds too easy to be true -- a week of actual change, is far more effective and powerful, than any amount of just intending to change, if one is forced to it.  Unfortunately, most people will never change unless they are forced to it -- which means they have not embraced the change, as the person who wills to do so, and actually carries it out through their actions -- if only for a week, but that one week, is reality, and not just wishing it were so.

In this world, many confuse the image (wishful thinking), for the reality, or truth of the matter -- in never finding out.  To such people, that they think it so, makes it so, and that the world they live in -- and when given the choice between the illusion and the actuality, will prefer the illusion over the actuality, which then becomes their  delusion of success and well-being.  Those are hard habits to break -- and why one who hopes to change anything, must actually effect that change -- once, and preferably over a week of daily practice (conditioning), to effect and implant that change successfully -- which seems strange at first, but that is all that is required.

That is the proverbial first step, that many never take -- and wonder why nothing changes, and particularly, that they don't change -- as much as they wish it would.  No amount of wishing, will effect the change that actually doing them -- will make.

And so those really earnest in producing change, will make it as easy as possible to effect -- and not difficult at first, and then increasingly more difficult.  The right conditioning program, makes change, increasingly easy -- so that change is the easiest thing to do, while the ineffective ways, require much more energy to effect -- for little or no positive benefits and results.

Thus changes are much more likely to be successful, if they seem minor rather than traumatic, and becomes the new reality -- because it is easier, and more productive.  But people who have been conditioned to always do things the hard way, will think that any change, must be even harder -- and reflexively prefer not to undergo that trauma, which stunts them for the rest of their lives, and brings about the steady deterioration many experience as the only change they think is possible in the world.  So their preference is always for the least change possible -- thinking that nothing good can ever come of change.  Then then become the defenders of the status quo -- all the while, all the while fancying themselves as the vanguard of progressive thought and enlightenment.

That is the challenge of every generation -- not to become the defenders of the status quo, and the agents against change -- that produce and results in their own destruction, because in order for life to remain vital and vibrant, one must be changing all the time.  To remain static, is to become dead -- to all the change and life about them -- in the self-isolation that has become the disease of our times -- in the physical handicaps that preclude us from participation, but also, mentally and socially, as we become disconnected even from our own bodies.

That begins with the divisions and the fragmentations of reality into the many unconnected parts -- instead of the integral drive for wholeness and integration of the new into the old -- and not the constant battle of the old against the new, ensuring that nothing new can ever supplant the old.  That's how people and things age.  There is no provision for assimilating the new, processing the new -- as the new, and better -- but insisting that everything new is merely the old, and must fit into the old categories, and business as usual.

That's how life has changed -- to a new, better reality, but one must embrace that change, and allow that such things are possible, or surely, the more things change, the more they will stay the same -- until that society and its individuals, disintegrate from the stresses -- of denying the new realities whose time has come.

Monday, September 03, 2012

The Great Divide

It should be apparent -- if not obvious -- that when one reaches the age of retirement (after 60), what distinguishes the "winners" from the "losers," is not how much money they have and can expect for the rest of their lives, but how healthy they are, and if they can maintain that health and improve it, or whether they are in an irreversible decline -- that robs them of every other asset and enjoyment.

That's why we do need a new paradigm of aging in the future -- in which people do not simply and invariably get worse, but that some people get better, and eventually, most people do -- as a result of human progress and evolution to an even better life.  That's why the present health model and vision of society for the foreseeable future, now fails, and is not sustainable beyond the next few centuries in which that underlying infrastructure begins to experience crises on the way to failure.

In many large gatherings now, it becomes apparent to the observer, that many more are obese and disabled from that obesity and lack of health maintenance -- as a priority for these people beyond the job security it provides for the health care professionals, and those who make a living off of health improvement scams.  The problem is mainly one of ignorance -- that every individual does not have the information that enables and empowers their own health -- but has the information that disables and disempowers themselves to the benefit of those who profit from that ongoing and continuing relationship.

To sell an exercise machine is one thing, but to improve health is something else entirely -- that nobody sells, but one has to "buy" -- and that is the inclination to understand that there is a reason why things happen, and why they don't -- and it doesn't matter how many authorities say otherwise, and they have a cure after one has injured oneself -- but not before.  Usually, if not always, that which cures, is also one's best prevention -- and the reason why people prepare themselves to do something, before just going ahead and doing it without reading up on how to do it first, and the problems and difficulties that could arise -- from the previous experiences of others.

That is as far as past knowledge goes -- and is useful, because each experience will always be different -- just as they disclaim, that nobody has perfect knowledge -- and there is the problem that the category of experience one places it in, may not be the reality of that situation at all.  One may have the right solution for the wrong problem -- which makes it just as wrong, as the wrong solution for the right problem.  And that is usually the failing of most people to connect the right solution to the right problem.  Many insist that even their one "right" solution, is the answer for every problem, and every so often, it will seem so -- and so they are completely and absolutely satisfied with their one right answer, and thinking their can be no other.

Then that things always just get worse -- and never better, is what they think all reality is -- and not that the whole history of the universe and life, is to get better, and evolve to the next level -- even if it was thought that further progress was not thought possible -- and everything that could be known and experienced, was already known and experienced -- and so one could only look at past knowledge -- if one wanted to understand the future, because the past could only repeat themselves forever more, and the "educated" people of their time -- taught it as the absolute truth, as though they knew everything, or even anything.

It is that mindset and conviction, that prevents human progress and the solution of problems -- and where the new winners and losers begin to diverge and then become the mainstream experience.  In these times, that is obviously the great frontier and the great divide -- that while most people are still aging and getting worse in the familiar ways we have seen in the recent past, a few individuals are breaking out of that pattern -- and creating a new way of being, not because they are the mainstream, but because they have questioned the authority that says such a thing is not possible -- and live in that reality.

But for those who think that nothing can ever change -- nothing certainly will.