November 30, 2004

stairs and chairs


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All this time I have been writing in order to separate my photographs so that they don't overlap on the screen, only to discover that everyone's computer is different, and the format I have so carefully crafted with chitter chatter on my end, may not have the desired effect on other screens out there in the wide world .

I am going to experiment with other kinds of spacing, as in, as blank as I can make it, and see if I will be able to do all those things that I cannot do in the mornings when I blog like lift weights , sweat , meditate and ride my chi machine .

Photo note: Triangles galore at the museum --also surreptitiously shot. I'm absolutely certain that the red chairs are not from a private collection.

Posted by Dakota at 06:59 AM

November 29, 2004



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This was my second chance for a New Yorker cover this week. The one that got away was a line outside of a men's room at the movies. The woman behind me in line (inside the Ladies) remarked that it was too bad that no one had a camera to record the unusual phenomenon . I did, but didn't get unzipped and focused before the line dissipated .

I happened upon the scene above at the museum. The photo would have a more perfect specimen if I had been able to shot my usual eighty frames. Instead, I was being surreptitious , assuming that cameras were forbidden on the premises. I was wrong. Flash is forbidden and photographing any piece that is on loan from a private collection is forbidden. (The Voluptuosa may be privately owned, I didn't check.) Otherwise you can shoot it up to your heart's content, if you don't mind that dim preservation lighting. As you know, I never let a little thing like that bother me.

Unfortunately, I didn't ask about the photography rules until I was leaving, or I would have shot up the Ming Dynasty for your perusual.

Photo note: a departure from the black background of recent entries

Posted by Dakota at 11:03 AM

November 28, 2004

#4 wet


the last
long poem
black tar
with shadows



a promise
to stop

Photo note: And so, on that cheerful note, the series ends until spring when the blossoms land, ready to be shot.

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Posted by Dakota at 07:10 AM

November 27, 2004

# 3


but noble
in its

the way
to dormancy

Photo note: Too much of a black driveway can be depressing.

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Posted by Dakota at 09:41 AM

November 26, 2004



The maw
of barren
a last

poised to
gulp it

down the

of winter

Photo note: Twenty points off for out of focus. Six point bonus for capturing nature and not fiddling with the leaf at all.

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Posted by Dakota at 01:30 PM



This is
the first

in a

My New Black
in Autumn

asphalt ,
an artistic
asset for
the amateur

Photo note: Leaf in triangles, photosymbolism and all that. I am the only person on God's green earth who started the DaVinci Code, and didn't finish it.

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Posted by Dakota at 07:00 AM

November 25, 2004

Thanksgiving, once again


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I am proud of myself for keeping it small this year, so that I have time to create a little something that won't be consumed and composted within twenty four hours. Something that will keep it's approximate shape and content over time.

I often think of the plight of so many of my creative efforts when standing next to someone who is admiring his handiwork on the ceiling beams . Unlike myself, he has been able to look up at the very same thing for the past twenty five years and feel the ole rush of pride in a job well done each time.

Most of my creations are long gone , unremembered, recycled , taken apart or thoroughly digested .

I think it's the medium that I use, bringing creativity to the requirements of daily living, most of which are disposable. As in, if you have to do it anyway, make it pretty or interesting. I should start to work in more permanent materials -- concrete and metal, install and build. Flesh and blood doesn't count, because there is no managing the project, once it's underway, though that has it's own delignts and satisfactions.

I remind myself that working in electrons has the possiblity of both shaping and permanence, at least until the server goes down or the internet disappears.

Which is to say, this Thanksgiving, I am thankful to have a blog. And to be able to refer to my efforts of last Thanksgiving , without even having to get up off my chair.

Photo note: Sorry, this is as close as I could come to a turkey

Posted by Dakota at 07:27 AM

November 24, 2004

November 23, 2004



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I have been resisting the temptation to peel off every twisted magnetic yellow ribbon I see attached to a bumper, (except the one that said "I support the man in China who makes these magnets"). I will, as soon as I figure out a good way to recycle them. I think they trivialize the horrible costs of this war. It's just too easy to buy a little expression at the checkout and stay unconscious.

I was horrified to discover that soldiers who had lost limbs in Iraq are being rehabilitated and retrained so that they can rejoin their units. Another sequela of a professional military, I presume. The only amputees I've seen on TV were running the New York City Marathon, and, when interviewed, said, without exception, that they had no regrets about their mutilating losses. I suspect they are an unusual group, meant to loll civilians into the comforting notion that losing a limb is no big deal. There must be many who are stunned and immobilized by their trauma. I only hope that these second tours of duty, with prostheses, are voluntary, not required. Just how much can a person be expected to sacrifice?

Nina Berman, in an interview about her new book of photographs, "Purple Hearts: Home From the War" offers an explanation:

"I expected bitter soldiers, but as I talked to more people and family members, I realized that wasn't really the experience of a wounded soldier returning home. Most of the soldiers I photographed had literally just been released from the hospital. They’re still in shock. For them to turn around and say, “I’m blind” or “I don’t have any legs” and then think that it wasn’t worth it -- that's a very hard leap to make. So I expected more bitterness and the pictures reveal soldiers who look quite lonely and almost in a state of shock.....

Martinez, [a recently returned soldier with terrible facial burns] like many soldiers I spoke with, really wants to stay in the Army. This is all they know and their short time in the Army is their first adult experience in the world. They had jobs, they had routines, and they were usually pretty good at their jobs. For a wounded soldier it’s all taken away from you. Not only are you wounded, and your life completely changed, but you also don’t have the Army structure and the so-called Army family that many soldiers become attached."

From the Institute for Policy Studies report on the mounting costs of the war in Iraq

"Costs to Veteran Health Care: About 64 percent of the more than 7,000 U.S. soldiers injured in Iraq received wounds that prevented them from returning to duty. One trend has been an increase in amputees, the result of improved body armor that protects vital organs but not extremities. As in previous wars, many soldiers are likely to have received ailments that will not be detected for years to come. The Veterans Administration healthcare system is not prepared for the swelling number of claims. In May, the House of Representatives approved funding for FY 2005 that is $2.6 billion less than needed, according to veterans' groups."

From from American Free Press.

"According to experts AFP consulted, among those 30,000 airlifted from Iraq and Afghanistan are an unknown number of seriously wounded, who, like thousands of others before them in previous wars, are hidden from the public.

No one knows—or at least no one has been able to find out—just how many of these men still exist in underfunded Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities throughout America, and possibly abroad, as the U.S. government maintains no public accounting of the “living dead.”

As this scenario of America’s “living dead” plays out during the Iraq war, the irony is that, according to recent reports, “Kevlar helmets, body armor equipped with ceramic panels, field improvisations to personal and vehicle armor all have contributed to better protection against [often fatal] bullet and shrapnel wounds but have left the extremities vulnerable.”

Some have had their faces blown away or suffered irreparable brain damage. Some have no limbs, and some are totally paralyzed.

Somewhere in the many facilities run by the VA, these men exist, hidden away in the department’s 163 hospitals, 135 nursing homes, 43 domiciliaries and 73 “comprehensive home-care programs.”

How many of these men are there?".

Can we bear to see a fraction of the devastation wrought by war?

Photos from The Memory Hole, who tells us that in the Gulf War there were about three wounded soldiers for every one killed. In the Iraq War the figure is seven wounded for every soldier killed..

Photos from Nina Berman's book
More photos from her essay in Mother Jones.

American Free press again:

"George W. Bush is the only president to delight in posing for photographs, in combat gear, with real soldiers as one of ‘the boys,’ ” a WWII vet told AFP. “However, he knows absolutely nothing about war and its costs. If he were to take a tour through a veterans hospital and see some of the devastated young men his belligerency has produced, he might have a different view of his record.”

And this doesn't even consider the huge number of wounded and mutilated Iraqi men, women and children who are without medical attention, because we have destroyed their hospitals and as well as their futures.

Photo note: Broken branches, snapped off limbs. Too pretty for this subject.

Posted by Dakota at 07:20 AM

November 22, 2004



a collection
of clickies
of colleges
into corporacracy

Photo note: Green ivy turning red. Photograph taken not on, but a mere fifty yards from, the campus of an Ivy League institution.

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Posted by Dakota at 09:33 AM

November 20, 2004

How do you tell if it's a fake?


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Really, you can find anything on the internet. In my halfhearted pursuit of the dish on Ramtha , some useful sites turned up. The Rick Ross Institute for the Study of Destructive Cults, Contraversial Groups and Movements is a good start, when you want to know if you're buying household cleaners from a cult . And Sarlo's Guru Rating Service is worth a peek.

Among many others, in the sixth tier, with only two flashing Buddha's, Sarlo rates Jesus, aka Prince of Peace and I quote:

"'Only Begotten Son of God.' Peace, commandments, heaven, hell, family values, etc. Adherents have been divisive and even bloodthirsty in pursuit of doctrinal purity. Patriarchal ideology has honoured neither women nor the environment. On the other hand there are the gnostics, St Thomas, etc. Some believe this trad has kept him alive and accessible. And there's "A Course In Miracles," said by enthusiasts to have been written by him. Long dead, killed by hierarchy, but benefit of doubt"

It's those Corporate Christians who are into Crusades that I have trouble with too. And then, just as I was tossing around that thought form this morning, I came upon the beautiful and talented Augustine , an admirer of Real Live Preacher . I was astonished and comforted to know that there is a Christian in the heart of the vast Redland who distains Christian Big Business and delivers Jesus in more authentic form. At least as far as I'm concerned.

Now Augustine ought to know the real thing when she sees it, since she has interviewed God extensively. She has another friend at Frizzy Logic whose photos will take your breath away.

I was heartened to find that Esther Hicks, channeling Abraham, isn't anywhere to be found on the cult lists.

Photo note: A modest contribution to the bizarre pink flamingo theme that seems to be emerging.. This fuzzy fellow is a puppet hanging about five feet up in a tree, even though he looks like he is ready to pluck that gum wrapper right off the ground. An inadvertant optical illusion. A fabulous one from Frizzy.

Posted by Dakota at 06:45 AM

November 17, 2004



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Ask me if I feel safer
with Goss
at the helm
of the CIA
and everyone
who knows
en masse

Ask me if I feel safer
now that there are
no more
in Fallujah
or roads
or hospitals
or people

Ask me if I feel safer
with Bush kissing Condi
on the front page
and Colin
into oblivion
they hope

Ask me if I feel safer
with yuppies investing
Social Security
in hot stocks
while the big fund
dries up
right out
from under
all those

Ask me if I feel safer
sipping arsenic
and mercury
with tartar
sitting under
in the ozone layer
in my skin

Ask me if I feel safer
as my health insurance
and my drug cost
and pharmaceutical profits
and insurance profits
my blood pressure

Ask me if I feel safer
half the world
raw aggression
our policies
our arrogance-
and me

Ask me if I feel safer
with an indicted felon
as Speaker of
the House
waiting for
a guilty verdict
to send him
to a

Ask me if I feel safer
because prayers
will soon be
where they
don't belong
and the Constitution
will be
except for
the right to bear arms
which we're
gonna need
I guess

Ask me if I feel safer
now that Rowe v Wade
is up for grabs
and poor women
will birth
unwanted children
with attachment disorders
supplying soldiers
to fight the
endless war
on terror
at home
on the streets
with each other

The answer
is no

then again
I never
that safe.
under a Bush

Some must

Photo note: These are trolley tracks outlined in yellow autumn leaves behind a fence. Fence. Safer. Loose association

Posted by Dakota at 04:35 PM

November 15, 2004

Bleep - Still Seeing Red


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What did I think about the film "What the Bleep Do We Know?"

I know what you're expecting from The Princess of the New Age , but I'm sorry to report that I was disappointed . That is not to say that I did not admire the effort. It was a valliant attempt to explain quantum physics using visual imagery. Along with the talking heads, (entirely too reminiscent of PBS specials), some of whom I would not have chosen, the illustrative "plot" was flabby . Marlee Matlin played Amanda, a slightly less angry deaf person than she was in "Children of a Lesser God". In "Bleep" she is pissed about her ex, and her thighs . Negative thoughts made her life miserable, in addition to her perennially perky, mess making roommate. Amanda's anger was tamped, but not extinguished, by her constant pill popping . After exposure to the mysteries of the universe, she was able to toss her benzodiazepines in the trash, quite literally. An epic scene. The denoument.

About those heads --Ramtha's in particular. . Salon has an investigative piece that is well worth sitting through the commercial to read in it's entirety - an excerpt:

".......That has meant little attention has been given to either the film's agenda, or its questionable use of supposed experts. At least one scientist prominently interviewed in the film now says his words were taken out of context. And two other key subjects in the film are not fully identified: a theologian who, the film fails to divulge, is a former priest who left the Catholic Church after allegations of sexual abuse; and a mysterious woman identified only as Judy "JZ" Knight, who is actually a sect leader claiming to channel a 35,000-year-old warrior spirit named Ramtha. The film's three co-directors are among those who follow Ramtha and look to Knight's channeled maxims to decipher the mysteries of life. These Ramtha followers reportedly number in the thousands. But critics call the sect a cult."


"In the movie, the 58-year-old Knight, whose accent is as thick as her mascara, [a Tammy Fay Baker look alike] makes the boldest statements -- pronounced with long, rolling R's -- about particles and God. "We have grrreat technology. But we still have this ugly, superrrstitious, backwahds cohncept of Gahd," she says, adding that "the height of arrrrrrogance is the belief of those who would see Gahd in their own image." Musing on the unity of consciousness and matter, she reminds us that "it only takes a fantasy for a man to have a harrrd-on." In her normal mode, Knight speaks the plain talk of her native Roswell, N.M., but in the manly presence of Ramtha, said to have conquered the continent neighboring Atlantis, Knight's jaw juts and her voice deepens into something magisterial and brash . Her Ramtha's School of Enlightenment, on a $2 million compound based in Yelm, Wash., boasts followers -- including celebrities like actress Shirley MacLaine (who attended Knight's seminars in the late '80s) and "Dynasty" star Linda Evans -- willing to pay up to $1,600 for a seminar. "

It's the $1600 seminars, the palatial compound, and the nondisclosure of Ramtha affiliation that bother me, especially since I am sure that no continuing education credits are offered. Boopsie of Doonesbury used to channel Hunk-Ra, perhaps Gary was trying to tell us something.

How can I doubt Ramtha when I am such a big fan of Esther Hicks, channeling Abraham ? For one thing, Abraham, ostensibly, is just a handy name for a clump of nonphysical beings. We're not getting just one spirit's opinion here,(and warrior's at that) --kind of like buying an index fund rather than an individual stock .

I do find that when I am not embroiled in election hatred , and my thoughts are pure and gay , the loveliness of life presents itself on a more consistant basis. Abraham's perspective helps me to appreciate difference, build optimism, and reframe things I might otherwise find negative. I am not expected to believe anything, join anything, or worship anything - just value the uniqueness of myself, and my own connection to all there is, which seems to work most of the time.

The big debate in my film going party, was not whether the observer has an effect on the observed, but whether the observer actually creates reality through thought. I believe this happens, and that it doesn't necessarily have to involve quantum physics and multiple realities.

Take this war, for example, as far as I'm concerned, it has been manufactured by thought. Saddam was undoubtedly a tyrant, but he wasn't bothering us. Some folks floated the thought that he was our "enemy", and for some reason it proved popular. In our efforts to save ourselves from our thoughts about Saddam, (and perhaps with his oil wells in mind) we have, in fact, created huge numbers of "insurgents" who are now definitely ACTING like our enemies. It is hard to maintain positive feelings when someone has trashed your country and killed 100,000 of your fellow countrymen. Moving right along, we are busy developing the thought that ALL Muslims are our enemies. Let's see what that constructive thought manifests.

A more positive example of plain old thought manifesting change comes from the work of Insoo Kim Berg and Steve de Shazer, practitioners of Solution Oriented Brief Family Therapy. They have a technique, which they call the "The Miracle Question" . They ask a person with a problem to imagine that a miracle has occured overnight, while they were sleeping, and, upon awakening, their problem is solved. The question is how would they know that the miracle has taken place when they get up in the morning, what would they look for and how would they behave differently as a result. Thought changed, behaviorial change ensues. Seems to work.

Perhaps we could do as well without the other worldly froufrous here and just reread Norman Vincent Peale . OOOOOh I just did, (this clickie was meant to be distainful, I think, but he sounds like my kind of guy). And guess what? The man was into psychology and channelling.

Photo note: Still seeing red, this time red lanterns the Chinese way of manifesting prosperity and happy thoughts. Available at the Manhattan Flea for anyone who needs material equipment.

Posted by Dakota at 05:26 PM

November 13, 2004

Still Seeing Red


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Anonymous quote from my email:

"I'm worried about the state of education in America when 51% of the country fails a 1-question multiple-choice test after having 4 years to study."

I am still very reactive . On Saturday night I was provoked to viscious attack by a gloating gentleman with whom we went to see "What the Bleep Do We Know?" . I thought he threw a beefsteak to the lions when I asked how his daughter liked her new job. She is working for the National Chamber of Commerce in the healthcare division. Instead of saying "Fine", he went smug and said that, although the National Chamber of Commerce is a nonpartisan organization (turns out they're red as hell) they felt it necessary to endorse Bush because Kerry chose a trial lawyer as his running mate. Kerry did so in order to get all those campaign contributions from rich trial lawyers. We all know that trial lawyers are responsible for increasing health insurance costs .

There was a weak parry from the audience "John Edwards is a senator, not a trial lawyer."

That is when I felt my blood pressure rise, my teeth bare and I launched myself across the small waiting area in the Spanish restaurant right into his face with all my venom. Good thing it was noisy. The discussion went quickly from accusations about corruptness of insurance companies to the dismantling of the Constitution.

"That's why we have the ACLU" he condescended sarcastically. I, with long scarf in hand ready to throttle, announced that was why I had just contributed $1000. Hatred was in my heart . I have known this man for thirty five years and I NEVER want to see him again. That's how I know I'm not over it yet -- Post Election Stress Disorder --adrenalin rush, instant fight readiness when listening to fellows like this, and Fox News hailing the leveling of Fallujah. I said that we obviously should not talk about this, and a LOOONNNGGG silence followed. Noisy restaurants are good for something in these days of vehement opinions.

I manifested this assault (his and mine) right after seeing "What the Bleep Do We Know? I knew I never should have gone with two "scientists" who took their last physics course in 1960. He was one. Their presence did not increase my appreciation for the movie. There was distainful aftertalk about the pseudo scientists who appeared in the movie, and their flawed logic. Although it was agreed that the observer does influence the observed , it was considered ridiculous that the observer creates his own reality.

Here's what the Wall Street Journal has to say about the film. So much for manifestation.

I'll do my review later, since I haven't posted in days.

Photo note: Just being concrete .

Posted by Dakota at 11:55 PM

November 11, 2004

Going Out of the Wedding Business


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Did you notice a reference to thought forms in the email from the dedensified yesterday? Unbeknownst to me, I have been riding one with the person who writes Veiled Conceit , a snappy blog devoted entirely to the New York Times Wedding Section. It's a good thing that I've moved on to political commentary, poetry and Indigo children. I might have been devastated otherwise.

I'm planning to donate all of my entries to Veiled, as well the numerous unpublished photos that I have accumulated in my vast archives, shot with "wedding" in mind. That is, assuming that I possess the technical expertise to do anything of the kind.

Ironically, this week I heard for the first time from both a bride and a groom. Peter Stamberg and Florenz Greenberg Eisman wrote, just when I am going out of business too. (You will notice, I did not say driven out).

Perhaps Veiled has room for a stringer. Maybe the salary will be good. Maybe I'll get to cover the European scene and travel on assignment. Might as well float that thought form.

Photo note: The flower in the picture is a cosmos , blowing -- white for wedding, cosmos for thought form.

Posted by Dakota at 12:05 PM

Searching for Light


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Okay, okay, even though I've been trying to move to a better place, I have been behaving like a dog shaking a dead rat lately. In that vein, I am compelled to direct you to just one more eloquent response to the election.

AND NOW, a U turn beginning with the clip A Knock at the Duir recommended by Atrios, of all people, who is also trying to soften .

In response to my intentions, half-hearted as they have been, a collection of emails arrived in my box yesterday from a dear and close personal friend. As you can see, they were aimed at the lightworker community. At best, I am a lightworker wannabe. I am not awakened to my unlimited possibilities yet, but that doesn't mean I'm not trying. Egads, what if I am awakened and this is it. Oh dear.

Here are the emails:

Dear Ones,
I am sending this on in hopes of continuing to build energy and light for the dream. I find reading others reactions and loving responses to recent events helps me a great deal. I hope that you will find upliftment also. with love , C.

Dear friends, kindred spirits, and holders of light,
I'm guessing that for many of us there is a shock and huge disappointment as this election shows that the hoped for change is on a timeline that has its own trajectory...which is sadly moving at a rate different then our dreams. Though the dreams are potent and true, apparently more must unfold for all involved (ourselves included) before they are ready to take form. Although on some level its not a surprise, for me and many (perhaps you too) it has still been at least for these few days, deflating discouraging and sad.

As I attempt to regroup, let all the feelings pass thru, sit with my own disbelief and share in the grief of others...I can still acknowledge gratefully the immense blessings and places that are good in this moment. As I resource, I can again resolve to do what I can to balance the forces of fear, in my circles of life, sometimes breath by breath... To that end, I have condensed here some helpful emails from another circle of lightworkers/teachers of which I am a part. I thought perhaps offering some of these snippets might be helpful for you to discharge the discouragement and connect us all on a positive, powerful note that keeps us rooted in the 'morals' that matter. As you will see some of these quotes came from still other we can feel the presence of this web of matter who the elected officials may be.

So here are these nuggets to hopefully brighten your heart with the light of connection, help remember the big picture and most of all re-affirm the vision of being the living embodiment of the change we want to see in the world. May we hold that with determined love until all of us can.

Much love to you all,

I think we should all remember that 56 million people voted for Kerry on
Tuesday. Thats alot of people. We are closer to our goal then we think. L
The things I know for sure are a comfort . I know we need to have our feelings and let them come so they do not get stuck in us . Anger can be a great motivator .The emotions tell us where we are in a process .They are blessings .

I do not want my thought forms to lessen the power of the New Dream . I know I never want to allow events I perceive as negative to harden my heart .I know tough times have honed me --made me bigger and more focused . There is a beauty that is born in darkness . To hold the light ,for myself and for others .We can do this . E


Blessings to all. I want to share with you all what brings me comfort and allows me to make sense of it all. For those who are not familiar with Ken Wilber's Integral Theory he talks about consciousness as evolving continuously. We move from egocentric to ethnocentric to worldcentric to planetarycentric etc. We then create belief systems, social institutions, etc., based on where we are on this consciousness evolution. It is evident to me that the US currently has a majority where the consciousness lies more on the ethnocentric than the world centric. We are concerned about the tribe and cannot see beyond it. It is virtually impossible to get someone who is firmly footed in an ethnocentric view of the world to understand that the rest of the world matters. Yet consciousness evolution is unstoppable and these views will slowly change. Western Europe has gone beyond and the majority now hold a worldcentric view. (This was not the case 40 years ago) I think the US is very close to making this leap and it is certain within one generation. For those of us who see the world (and everything) as interconnected the pain is tremendous; for those who don't, they do not understand our pain. In the meantime we hold the light and accelerate the consciousness evolution for those who are on the cusp; as I remind myself that time is not linear, even though I perceive it to be.




Post-Election Message for Lightworkers and Indigos from Doreen Virtue

Dearest Brothers and Sisters of the Light,

With the news that John Kerry conceded the election to Bush, we're left to
consider, "What's next?"

The election results may be disappointing, but they're not surprising. After
all, we're still in the tail end of the old energy. This is why we
incarnated! We're on earth to usher out the old energy, and as much as we
wanted to hurry this process, there are still some lessons left to learn.

The biggest spiritual lessons for all of us are forgiveness, love, and
following our Divine guidance. You, as a Lightworker or Indigo, are teachers
of these lessons. So, it's important for us to keep these lessons in mind

First, forgiveness. Please be a living role model for this important
spiritual lesson by practicing it today. Forgive those who voted differently
from your preferences. Forgive those who won the election. Forgive the

Forgiveness purifies you and allows you to be a pure reflection of the
Divine light. When others see this pure light reflected in you, it inspires
and heals them in a deep way.

Second, love. Love today and the future. Surround it with the highest
possible energy to nurture it like a new-born baby. Instead of complaining
about the election results, let's set our intentions for the highest
possible outcomes. After all, everyone without exception is a Holy Child of
God. Let's affirm and expect the best out of everyone, including ourselves.

Third, following our Divine guidance. While we forgive and love, we must
still take guided action to make necessary social changes. In fact,
forgiveness and love give us the high self-esteem, energy, and courage that
it takes to be leaders and activists. Think of Mother Teresa and Dr. Martin
Luther King, Jr., for example. They changed the world single-handedly by
following their inner guidance. YOU can do the same thing . . . You MUST do
the same thing . . . That's why you're here.

Let's commit to each other that we'll practice and teach these three
lessons. Let's have this election be a springboard to bring out the very
best in ourselves and others. While it's natural to grieve in the face of
disappointment, you can channel that energy into positive action. Pray for
guidance, and then notice the impressions and intuition that you receive.
Ask for the courage, time, and other support you need to put your Divine
guidance into action.

We all appreciate everything you've done so far in this world. There's still
a lot of work ahead of us (especially for you Indigos, who are here to usher
integrity into the government, media, and other organizations). Together
with Heaven, we can do it!

With Complete Faith in the Power of Love,

Doreen Virtue


Ah, gratefulness. These past hours you all have taught me still another
lesson in gratefulness. Your words and your presence have been uplifting. Thank
you. I went to our website and looked at our pictures and reminded myself
"this is also true". Community heals isolation and reminds me of all the
reasons to have hope.

I also have been uplifted by messages from another commuity and an essay by
Clarissa Pinkola Estes [who wrote Women Who Run With The Wolves]. I pass it
along to you. G

We Were Made for These Times

by Clarissa Pinkola Estes

My friends, do not lose heart. We were made for these times.

I have heard from so many recently who are deeply and properly
bewildered. They are concerned about the state of affairs in our
world right now. Ours is a time of almost daily astonishment and
often righteous rage over the latest degradations of what matters
most to civilized, visionary people.

You are right in your assessments. The lustre and hubris some have
aspired to while endorsing acts so heinous against children, elders,
everyday people, the poor, the unguarded, the helpless, is

Yet, I urge you, ask you, gentle you, to please not spend your
spirit dry by bewailing these difficult times. Especially do not
lose hope. Most particularly because, the fact is that we were made
for these times. Yes. For years, we have been learning, practicing,
been in training for and just waiting to meet on this exact plain of

I grew up on the Great Lakes and recognize a seaworthy vessel when I
see one. Regarding awakened souls, there have never been more able
vessels in the waters than there are right now across the world. And
they are fully provisioned and able to signal one another as never
before in the history of humankind.

Look out over the prow; there are millions of boats of righteous
souls on the waters with you. Even though your veneers may shiver
from every wave in this stormy roil, I assure you that the long
timbers composing your prow and rudder come from a greater forest.
That long-grained lumber is known to withstand storms, to hold
together, to hold its own, and to advance, regardless.

In any dark time, there is a tendency to veer toward fainting over
how much is wrong or unmended in the world. Do not focus on that.

There is a tendency too to fall into being weakened by dwelling on
what is outside your reach, by what cannot yet be. Do not focus
there. That is spending the wind without raising the sails. We are
needed, that is all we can know. And though we meet resistance, we
more so will meet great souls who will hail us, love us and guide
us, and we will know them when they appear.

Didn't you say you were a believer? Didn't you say you pledged to
listen to a voice greater? Didn't you ask for grace? Don't you
remember that to be in grace means to submit to the voice

Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of
stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our
reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another
soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help

It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom, will cause the
critical mass to tip toward an enduring good. What is needed for
dramatic change is an accumulation of acts, adding, adding to,
adding more, continuing.

We know that it does not take "everyone on Earth" to bring justice
and peace, but only a small, determined group who will not give up
during the first, second, or hundredth gale.

One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene
in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Soul on deck
shines like gold in dark times. The light of the soul throws sparks,
can send up flares, builds signal fires, causes proper matters to
catch fire.

To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these - to be
fierce and to show mercy toward others, both, are acts of immense
bravery and greatest necessity. Struggling souls catch light from
other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it.

If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest
things you can do. There will always be times when you feel

I too have felt despair many times in my life, but I do not keep a
chair for it; I will not entertain it. It is not allowed to eat from
my plate.

The reason is this: In my uttermost bones I know something, as do
you. It is that there can be no despair when you remember why you
came to Earth, who you serve, and who sent you here.

The good words we say and the good deeds we do are not ours: They
are the words and deeds of the One who brought us here.

In that spirit, I hope you will write this on your wall: When a
great ship is in harbor and moored, it is safe, there can be no
doubt. But that is not what great ships are built for. This comes
with much love and a prayer that you remember who you came from, and
why you came to this beautiful, needful Earth.

Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Ph.D

The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.
We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.
~ Albert Einstein ~

Special ELECTION MESSAGE from "Matthew"

November 2, 2004

MATTHEW: Mother, I thank you for coming to the computer when I know you would rather watch TV to learn voting results, and I shall make this message short. Once again, a host of high light beings has requested me to speak on their behalf.

We wish our voices to be heard around the world because the world is keenly watching the presidential election outcome in the United States. We are urging all peoples of all nations to attach NO negative sentiments to this! As we have said previously, and other high light sources have given this same word to their respected channel messengers: The outcome is not significant! The so-called victor is the candidate of the Illuminati faction that won the battle of infighting that has seesawed for several months. The two factions differ in the strategies within their dark agendas, but the ultimate aim of both factions is global domination. This no more favorably serves the people of the United States most of whom are unaware that their votes do not count than it serves any other country where true freedom and honest elections are valued.

What IS of great significance to everyone on the planet is the massive amount of light generated by the voters! Regardless of their choices, these citizens cast their ballots with the desire, even conviction, that their preferred candidate will make wise decisions that will bring peace, end environmental destruction, and initiate other beneficial changes to improve conditions in the United States and the world. Collectively the voters who turned out in great numbers have substantially added to the light that is moving Earth into the higher frequencies. While it is true that much darkness is yet to be transmuted into light, the outpouring of electors in the United States has given Earth a considerable boost on her journey. If you could see the soul of Earth in this moment, you would be stunned by the brilliance! THIS is the magnificent joy of this day that we see and we wish to have YOU see! Today has brought your world closer to the era of peace and love, where all leaders will be acting within spiritual integrity and peoples of all nations will live within cooperation, compassion, justness, forgiveness, comfort and harmony.

You need to remain steadfast in the light during the times of turmoil that will precede that Golden Era. Earth still must rid herself of the remaining negativity along her journey into fourth density, and that is why we urge all who may feel disheartened in this moment NOT to attach that negativity to the election outcome. Please do not add to Earth's chore in this respect! Instead, feel immensely heartened by what WE see this day! Feel immensely heartened by knowing that the numbers of people awakening and becoming soul searchers are continuously growing, and you have as constant allies and helpers myriad members of your space family, in physical as well as in spirit, among you on the planet as well as surrounding it. The abundance of love-light being beamed to each of you comes with a purity, beauty and intensity you can only imagine, and the light we see within you is equally joyous for us. Stay the light course, our beloved Earth family we are with you!


If you have made it through all that, you will surely want to check out John Perry Barlow in his entirety. A tiny exerpt that really resonates:

"I have a terrible admission to make. I've been so fanatically opposed to this administration that I have taken dark satisfaction in their failures, even though they were American failures as well. I welcomed growing indications that the situation in Iraq was deteriorating into a sump-hole of back-alley insurgency. Good economic news was bad economic news as far as I was concerned, and vice versa. I was tickled to death with Al Qaqaa and its terrorist-purloined WMDs, and not just because the name was so great. Surely all these bad tidings would eventually add up to an indictment that would convict Bush in the eyes of the American people and they would rouse themselves from Fox-hypnosis and 'possum sleep and vote for change.

But it didn't turn out that way. While I still believe that half of America is hallucinating on hot religion and bad TV, I can't say I have been any too sane, having been delivered into a condition where I took comfort in the successes of our enemies and frowned at news of economic recovery. Despite my own financial anxieties, and those of all around me, I have been so zealous that my own well-being was secondary in importance to the political damage bad times might do the Bush administration. Now that's hallucination. And I'm sorry."

And there folks, in an entry longer than my attention span, is a sampling of how others are dealing with this tragedy for democracy.

Photo note: As for myself, I found the light right in my own backyard, where my precious Japanese Red Maple was all aglow, even without help from the saturation button on Adobe Photoshop.

Posted by Dakota at 06:47 AM

November 10, 2004

Here in New England


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This editorial by William V. D'Antonio from the Boston Globe has been flapping around on my desk since Halloween. Among other things, D'Antonio found that Massachusetts has the lowest divorce rate in the nation, and that born-again Chrisitians have the highest. A little excerpt for those of you who didn't feel like clicking:

"For all the Bible Belt talk about family values, it is the people from Kerry's home state, along with their neighbors in the Northeast corridor, who live these values. Indeed, it is the "blue" states, led led by Massachusetts and Connecticut, that have been willing to invest more money over time to foster the reality of what it means to leave no children behind. And they have been among the nation's leaders in promoting a living wage as their goal in public employment. The money they have invested in their future is known more popularly as taxes; these so-called liberal people see that money is their investment to help insure a compassionate, humane society. Family values are much more likely to be found in the states mistakenly called out-of-the-mainstream liberal. By their behavior you can know them as the true conservatives. They are showing how to conserve family life through the way they live their family values."

Sadly, smug won't get us anywhere, but then again, neither did the facts .

Photo note: AND we have the finest fall foliage, which is an excuse to publish this trite, oft seen, but beautiful shot.

Posted by Dakota at 09:21 AM

November 08, 2004


Lamp of Reason

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How could Americans reelect the worst president we ever had? I have a couple of ideas.

The first, and most ominious, is the evidence of voting irregularities that is accumulating . Suspicions are mounting. E-voting machines that do not print paper ballots are easily tampered with. Perhaps the Neocons, with help from major contributor Diebold , got to the heart of the matter with their little screwdrivers earlier than we thought they might. I am not expecting that the machines will be "corrected" either. In fact, it was so effective, maybe every precinct will have updated to Diebold by 2008 -- with the added benefit of a tidy profit to the aforementioned. We may have experienced our last semi accurate count. The final results of this election do not reflect the polls, exit and other. Why? Why, especially since we know the polls weighted Republicans more heavily. This might just be sour grapes and poor sportmanship on my part. Maybe the election was fair and square , on the up and up .

In which case, an alternative explanation lies within social psychologist Leon Festinger's concept of cognitive dissonance . "An example used by Festinger (1957) may assist in elucidating the theory. A habitual smoker who learns that smoking is bad for health will experience dissonance, because the knowledge that smoking is bad for health is dissonant with the cognition that he continues to smoke. He can reduce the dissonance by changing his behavior, that is, he could stop smoking, which would be consonant with the cognition that smoking is bad for health. Alternatively, the smoker could reduce dissonance by changing his cognition about the effect of smoking on health and believe that smoking does not have a harmful effect on health (eliminating the dissonant cognition). He might look for positive effects of smoking and believe that smoking reduces tension and keeps him from gaining weight (adding consonant cognitions). Or he might believe that the risk to health from smoking is negligible compared with the danger of automobile accidents (reducing the importance of the dissonant cognition). In addition, he might consider the enjoyment he gets from smoking to be a very important part of his life (increasing the importance of consonant cognitions)."

The same phoenomenon applies to the populace's continued support of George W. Bush, despite his futile, costly, mutilating war and his rigid, moralistic, elitist, fascistic, secretive policies. In spite of all evidence to the contrary, at least 40% of Americans (assuming that rigging Diebald machines can't account for more than a 10% descrepency, am I too optimistic-- now they have four years to do a better job ) chose to stay the course with this arrogant aggressor. In spite of evidence to the contrary, some still believe that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, Saddam was in some way connected to 9/11, that the meager tax cuts that they are getting will amount to significant lifestyle changes when they someday join the privileged, that Bush's aggression has improved their safety in the world and pleased our allies, and that same sex marriage can affect the institution so radically that civil rights should be denied. Oh, and that killing people is okay if they are different scarey, Muslim, criminal, poor and black, and not okay if they are single celled.

Here's a third possible explanation. In "For Your Own Good: Hidden Cruelty in Childrearing and the Roots of Violence" Alice Miller, a Swiss psychoanalyst, postulates that the German people followed Hitler so enthusiastically because of cruel and humiliating German child rearing practices. Germans, raised in a punitive, fear exploiting, authoritarian environment , found the "familiar" in Hitler, producing an entire population that readily identified with the aggressor . Take a peek at Struwwelpeter , merry moral tales for children, for an insight into the sadistic these techniques.

And the relationship here? Fundamentalists are not known for their empathic childrearing. In a article entitled "God's sWarrior Twins" Kimberly Blaker reminds us that "Abuse of Christian fundamentalist children is well documented. As early as 1974, sociologist H. Erlanger reported in American Sociological Review that conservative religious affiliation is one of the greatest predictors of child abuse, more so than age, gender, social class, or size of residence. Other studies, reported in The Role of Parental Religious Fundamentalism and Right-wing Authoritarianism in Child-Rearing Goals and Practices by social psychologist Henry Danso and others, conclude that child discipline by corporal punishment is typically related to religious conservatism, probably stemming from fundamentalists' authoritarian nature." Raising children under these conditions produces a crop of blind followers , ripe for exploitation by authoritarian/patriarchical demigods. And look who voted for the Bushwacker in droves.

And there you have it folks. I'm out of ideas. How can one intervene in a constructive way? Of course, good ideas abound on the net .

I willl end with some words of comfort from Thomas Jefferson taken from a letter he sent in 1798 after the passage of the Sedition Act

"A little patience, and we shall see the reign of witches pass over,
their spells dissolve, and the people, recovering their true sight, restore their government to its true principles. It is true that in the
meantime we are suffering deeply in spirit, and incurring the
horrors of a war and long oppressions of enormous public debt......If
the game runs sometimes against us at home we must have patience till luck
turns, and then we shall have an opportunity of winning back the principles we
have lost, for this is a game where principles are at stake."

Photo note: Shedding light. Where is that light anyway?

Posted by Dakota at 10:47 AM

November 06, 2004

The pink flamingo of death

pink flamingo of death

Sparkly pink
bobbing bird

yellow feet
teeny tux

benign ?
be sure

the perkily
of death

Photo note: Question: Dakota, dear, didn't you vow to give it up? Answer: Yes, but this picture popped into my camera and I just couldn't help my loose associations. Suggestion: Try harder

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Posted by Dakota at 10:58 AM

November 04, 2004

Sorry, Sour Sumac

red sumac with sky

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I had such good intentions, as can be seen by all that sumac and blue sky. However, I made the grave error of turning on NPR instead of Esther Hicks, channeling Abraham , or my audio novel , on the way back to my office, only to hear George W. Bush conducting a press conference . He can have more press conferences now that he doesn't have to worry about being incoherent and screwing up his reelection with slips of the tongue that cause concern about his dementia from drug and alcohol abuse.

He promised to reach out to democrats, but not in a way that warmed my heart . NPR, for once, noted that he hadn't changed anything in his "agenda" as a gesture toward this end, just those same old phoney Texas homeboy empty lies again. I guess that will have to do.

THEN the arrogant prince (note restraint) started talking about the "political capital he had earned" just like the "political capital he had earned in 2000" and his "intention to spend it" just like he did in 2000. 3% isn't much capital in my book, but he's the one with the the MBA . Where does he get the idea that he has a mandate. He won by a slim majority. I found this infuriating .

And then I read Fred Vincy's excellent commentary on the impending death of the filibuster and the marvelous possibilities that lie ahead in a revamped Supreme Court, and I am, once again, fit to be tied . All those silly checks and balances are out the window. It's full speed ahead to the destruction of democracy, and a few small countries while we're at it. .

So Esther Hicks, channeling Abraham, advises us, under these circumstance, as in all circumstances that displease, to make the best of the situation. She would remind me that I am in charge of my thoughts and feelings and, no matter what is going on around me, the only thing that matters is how I manage to feel right here in this moment. She would encourage me to reach for the next best thought. Sometimes that's hard to do. Let's see, the homocidal fantasies feel pretty good -- actually, make that mass homocidal fantasies. Ummmm...mmm...mmm. I am at a loss for a something a little better than that. Oh, I know, I can fantacize about what I'll do with my tax cut. Esther recommends that when you can't change your feelings about a subject, change the subject altogether, as in, go pet your cat, watch a movie, or go for a walk. Which was what I was trying to do before I turned on the radio. Cheerio

Posted by Dakota at 02:44 PM

Would that this were my image


A friend sent this to me yesterday. It's from somewhere in the bowels of , to which I have no access, so I cannot give credit where credit is due. Sorry. Notice how beautifully the borders flow. She also suggested that I google dominionism , which I did dutifully. Alan Jacobs tries to be reassuring, but Katherine Yurica has a more alarming perspective. Somehow, dominionism passed me by, probably because I haven't been going to church on Sunday. Seems like something ominious has been happening that us Born Once's have missed.

In keeping with this cheerful theme, here's short summary of other wins published on Metafilter

"While you were re-electing a president:
Senator-elect Jim DeMint: Thinks that unwed pregnant women and gays are unfit to be schoolteachers.
Senator-elect Tom Coburn: Wants the death penalty for abortion doctors.
Senator-elect John Thune: Mr. School Prayer Amendment.
Voters in 11 states voted to ban same-sex marriage. The lowest margin was 57%-43%. The highest (Mississippi) was 86%-14%. Kentucky's also bans civil unions. That one was 75%-25%.
The Senate will likely be split 55-45 in favor of Republicans, creeping closer to a filibuster-proof supermajority. Meanwhile, 89% of these guys [the Supreme Court Justices] are older than 65.
Enjoy your tax cut, America. You're going to need it."

And all that silliness about never reinstating the draft. LeftTalk reports that there is a Selective Service Proposal , already drafted, obtained through a Freedom of Information Act Request (take advantage of it while it lasts, folks), which contradicts W.'s preelection promise. How, may I ask, are we going to man the Crusade without more soldiers? There are, after all, many more Evil Empires to subdue.

As you can see, I am just trying to adjust to the malignant diagnosis of four more years, no more democracy, received yesterday. To my astonishment, more than half of the country is celebrating their affliction. Maybe there's something to this rapture business.

As long as we're on the subject The Rapture Index reads 156. Anything over 145 on the Index means "hold onto your seatbelts". Good thing I checked.

Posted by Dakota at 05:47 AM

November 02, 2004

TaTa Democracy-- it was great while it lasted.


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I had difficulty selecting a picture ugly enough to express my disgust at the outcome of this election. The snarl on the cat's face (hopefully not lost in reduction) and the arch of it's back, though inadequate, will have to suffice. Although it's not over -- and you can be certain the neocons are pulling out every wrench they have, to twist Ohio into submission -- the kids didn't show up. It's their future, and they just didn't show up. And half the country believes that forcing women to raise unwanted children, killing 115,000 Iraqi civilians, and trashing the environment for short term profit are moral values. Whereas, such hideous acts as using stem cells to cure disease, and allowing gay men and women to marry are despicable. I despair for this country. I am girding myself for four more years of secrets, spin, short sightedness and increasing global animosity toward us. We have reelected a President who revels in war.

Did you hear that China slammed Bush ? A little too late, in my book. And this, even after Colin Powell offered to sell Taiwan down the drain last week . What's up?

Adding to my distress this morning is the fact that, in trying to get the spammy junk off my blog, I mistakenly erased some profound, informative, sincere, and funny comments. A heartfelt apology to the erased, PLEASE don't stop writing. I learned my technical lesson, I think.

On the bright side, I am proud that I was able to refrain from the use of profanity this morning. You may feel free to congratulate me. I promise not to erase anything.

Here's the pot calling the cat black. There is no voter fraud, only voter suppression.

Posted by Dakota at 07:49 PM

November 01, 2004