Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Monsanto buys leading Bee Research Firm

Pat Macpherson, Ashley Wells, Wisdom Quarterly; (NaturalSociety); Cryptogon.com via Collapsenet.com; HuffingtonPost.com
The cause of Colony Collapse Disorder, the great bee die off, seems to be neonicotinoids, a deadly new ingredient in pesticidal chemicals brought to market by genetic-manipulation giant and future owner of all the world's seeds, Monsanto Inc. (wikimedia.org).
(Irene Lainika/flickr.com)
Monsanto -- the massive biotechnology [poison, seed manipulating] company being blamed for contributing to the dwindling bee population -- has bought up one of the leading bee collapse research organizations.

Recently banned from Poland with one of the primary reasons being that the company’s genetically modified corn may be devastating the dying bee population, it is evident that Monsanto is under serious fire for their role in the downfall of the vital insects.

It is therefore quite apparent why Monsanto bought one of the largest bee research firms on the planet.
It can be found in public company reports hosted on mainstream media that Monsanto scooped up the Beeologics firm back in September 2011.

During this time the correlation between Monsanto’s GM crops and the bee decline was not explored in the mainstream, and in fact it was hardly touched upon until Polish officials... More
  • THE MONSANTO PROTECTION ACT (HuffPost Live) Does the newly signed Farmer Assurance Provision, aka the "Monsanto Protection Act," mean that GMO crops can evade any serious scientific or regulatory review? More
Wisdom Quarterly
Non-genetically modified organism seeds
Monsanto's corporate irresponsibility has a new ally -- Pres. Obama. He recently ignored liberals, progressives, and independents by signing the Newspeak/Orwellian "Farmer Assurance Provision" to ensure that Monsanto, Inc. is immune from the harm it is doing to bees (crucial to the farming of many valuable plants dependent on them as their pollinators), the environment, human health, and small farmers. When the government gets into bed with corporations, former Dictator Mussolini called that "fascism." Business with the support of politicians and the military, becomes an unstoppable force.

The Best Worst-President Ever (comedy)

Wisdom Quarterly (EDITORIAL)

Look, ma, stand-up with no teleprompter! He may be a "hypocrite" (aka Nobel Peace Laureate) selling out those forced to elect him -- at the threat of the unthinkable alternative that was Romney -- but at least the Great Orator can deliver jokes others write for him. 
Oh, those superstars. ABBA has a secret Nazi connection, a lot like the Bush Family's secret Nazi connection. What is it? 
Nazis sure are interesting to Americans, with its Neo Nazi politicians and right-wing Christian extremists, extremists so extreme they deny the Caucasian status of two brothers from the Caucasus mountain region on account of their alleged affiliation to radical Islam. "They're not the right kind of white," now where have we heard that kind of thing before. Not Pres. B.S. Obama, but those he fronts for (the military-industrial complex), and those he supposedly opposes, the Good Ol' Boy network that couldn't get these draconian aspirations into law without a lovable and well-spoken "left-wing Kenyan socialist" catching everyone off guard. 

Racism is so insipid and entrenched in our way of thinking that we seem to have become blind to it. Garden variety racism, who cares? That's an individual problem playing itself out in a few karma streams. What we worry about is institutional racism, of the Neo Nazi and "fascist" (corporate-state fusion) sort.
Conan O'Brien makes an impression at the 2013 White House
Correspondents' Dinner, almost upstaging funnyman Barry
There is a campaign -- seemingly brought about by master conspirators ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council), the source of so many conspiracies -- we call mass incarceration. It is the new Jim Crow, mass incarceration in the supposed Age of Colorblindness, according to Prof. Michelle Alexander. But how could it be? We have a black president! It is precisely because we do that the left is abashed or blind to what our master puppet executive is passing through Congress, the Senate, and the general populace: 

drone assassinations, clamping down on government whistleblowers like Pfc. Bradley Manning, NDAA's indefinite detention of citizens on US soil (without accusation, trial, right of defense, or even any right to lett the outside world know, which is called "disappearing someone" everywhere else), failing to close Guantanamo Torture/Detention Center as promised, expanding the wars on Afghanistan (and Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia... and the cyberwar on Iran, and the future war on Syria), homeland spying and warrantless wiretapping on a massive scale, posse comitatus, (the use of the military to police civilian US citizens), and other violations of civil liberties the drafters of the Amendments to the Constitution would never stand for. And now Obama has become a corporate schill for Monsanto, too.

Physicists: Trees talk! What are they saying?

(LINK: ABClocal.go.com/KABC)

Bodhi tree (exoticindiaart.com)
Something mysterious is happening in the Mojave Desert's Joshua Tree National Park. The reason may be grim, but the effect is beautiful.
"It's more than interesting, it's probably unprecedented in anybody's recent memory anyway," Cameron Barrows, a research ecologist at the University of California, Riverside, told ABC News.
He's talking about blooms on the Joshua trees that are larger [and more widespread] than locals say they've ever seen.
"I don't know what happened this year, but it's been an incredible display," Virginia Willis, a 15-year resident, told ABC. "It doesn't make any sense..." More
Thai Buddhist novices hang colorful flags on Bodhi tree (ChristyB30/flickr.com)
Trees "talk" and say more than thirst
Jacki Lyden, "All Things Considered" (NPR.org)
(Lee Berger/nationalgeographic.com)
A team of physicists at Grenoble University in France discovered that trees make different sounds when they are starved for water versus when they are simply thirsty. Dr. Alexandre Ponomarenko, the lead researcher, explains; hear a bit of the thirsty tree sounds.... Two out of three trees are dangerously parched the world over, at least that's what a study published in Nature determined late last year. Biologists looked at hundreds of tree species in 80 locations around the world and found... LISTEN

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Just sitting when I should be doing?

Wisdom Quarterly (EDITORIAL)
Budai the Happy Bodhisattva sits joyfully (Muffett68 flickr.com)
"Don't just do something; sit there!" it is said.

How could sitting -- intentional action that's mental -- trump physical and verbal action?

I want to protest, I want to cry out, I want change the world!

Budai (Shutterhound Photography/flickr)
Can I  even change that world? That remains to be seen. We keep trying. But while we fret and fuss, the one sure person we could be changing goes unchanged.

Who can save another? Help another, yes, of course. But who can save, who can do it for another -- "it" being cultivate absorption as the basis of successfully liberating-insight (i.e., walk the Path of Purification)?

No one saves us but ourselves.
No one can and no one may.
We ourselves must walk the Path;
Buddhas only point the Way.

Why are we searching when the Path is known? What are we waiting for? Step 1, Step 1, what is Step 1?

Giant Buddha, Leshan (tenlivingcities.org)
One way to understand the very packed (densely encoded) message of the Noble Eightfold Path is to follow it as a threefold teaching: 1) right view (wisdom), 2) virtue, and 3) meditation (concentration, that is, the effortless composure of mind, which like the hang gliding after all the effort of launching).

This is not a step-by-step path: Its factors or folds are cultivated simultaneously. So as we increase in virtue, our ease, joy, and concentration improves. This gives rise to wisdom as the mind/heart settles and we are able to see things more clearly just as they are.

The Truth is just as it is. We need not contort ourselves to "believe" it. We need only watch and withhold biases (distortions), evaluations (views), and opinions. The Truth sets one free. We need do nothing more than find that truth by rectifying ourselves rather than the world. "Don't just do something; sit there."

Not the Buddha, but Fat Happy Budai the Bodhisattva (Spectergeneral/flickr.com)

"How to Become a Powerful Person"

Wisdom Quarterly; American monk Bhikkhu Bodhi poem Jan. 2013 (BodhiMonastery.org)
Buddha standing and reclining into final-nirvana, Gal Vihara, Sri Lanka (Buddhanet.net)
Bhikkhu Bodhi
...The source lies hidden deep within ourselves,
But to find it we must use the appropriate tools.
The first key to success is the power of faith,
Trust in a supreme wisdom that points us to the good.
Faith settles the mind and inspires us with courage,
Inciting us to deeds of joyful self-transcendence.
Ready to spring their traps when our vigilance slackens.
To stem their attacks and sustain our self-respect
The power of shame keeps us firmly on the path.

Contemplate deeply our relatedness to others,
Consider the value of esteem in others’ eyes.
Let the power of moral dread hold us back from the abyss.
The path to liberation is not for the weak,
Nor for those given to self-pity and despair.
It is only by the invigorating power of energy
That we can become heroes, true masters of our minds.
Traveling by night, enveloped in dense mist,
We have wandered pointlessly in the maze of birth and death.
Now use the power of wisdom as the light
To guide our steps to the shore of final freedom.
Equipped with these five powers taught by the Great Sage
We rise up as conquerors stronger than any foes.
Masters of ourselves, examples for the nation,
We illuminate the world like the blazing noontime sun.

Lifting Ourselves Up
Breathing meditation in full lotus pose (care2.com)
Bodhi tree mural (Romila Barryman/flickr)
It is not necessary to look without for power and success. It  is to be found within. The Buddha, in a commentarial enumeration of the Requisites or Constituent-Factors of Enlightenment (Bodhipakkaya-dhamma, "Things Pertaining to Enlightenment"), lists Four Bases of Power (iddhipada -- will, energy, consciousness, discriminative power) and Five Powers (bala -- confidence, energy, mindfulness, concentration, and wisdom), which are also listed as the Five Faculties (indriya,  from indo as in Indra, king of kings and lord of lords and India, that lord's own great land).

Four Bases of Power (iddhipada)
  1. Will (chanda)
  2. Energy (viriya)
  3. Consciousness (citta)
  4. Discrimination (vimamsa, vīmaŋsā, mimāṃsā)
Five Faculties and Powers (indriya and bala)
  1. Confidence/faith (saddha)
  2. Energy (viriya)
  3. Mindfulness (sati, smṛti)
  4. Concentration (samadhi)
  5. Wisdom (panna, prajñā)

US military's "The Kill Team" (documentary)

Pfc. Sandoval, Wisdom Quarterly; Moral Injury and PTSD in the USMC

"The sad truth is that this [has frequently happened before, is happening now, and] will happen again."
On Whistleblowers and War Crimes
Q&A: Kill Team director Dan Krauss
Katie Van Syckle (Rolling Stone, 04-22-13)
In the spring of 2011, Rolling Stone reported the chilling news of a rogue band of soldiers, or "Kill Team," responsible for murdering three Afghan civilians. Although Sgt. Calvin Gibbs was the convicted mastermind, for filmmaker Dan Krauss, the unique moral conflict rested with Spc. Adam Winfield. While on duty in Afghanistan, Winfield discovered several of his fellow soldiers were intentionally killing civilians. More

Who are the "true" Celts? (video)

Pat Macpherson, Seth Auberon, Wisdom Quarterly; WalesOnline.co.uk (02-18-06)
The British Isles: Ireland, Man, Scotland, Wales... (earthobservatory.nasa.gov)
Danu the wee folk (amayodruid)
Modern nations that consider themselves Celtic do not actually have anything to do with the "true Celts" who once dominated Iron Age Europe, according to anthropological research.

The Irish, Welsh, Scots, and other peoples who regard themselves as Celtic cousins are in fact ancient Bretons, who include the original English peoples.
Being Celtic is neither about blood, tribes, nor red hair, nor is it about loving folk music and believing in the little people.
It's Galway Che, Irish revolutionary
In a landmark special [broadcast in 2006], anthropologist Richard Rudgley, who comes from London, aims to separate myth from fact as he reveals the Celtic world.
Chris Malone, producer for Granada TV, joined him on the journey tracing the Celtic tradition across the world and said that it actually originated with the "true Celts" of central Europe.
Mr. Malone said, "It is assumed that the Celts are the people who speak a 'Celtic' language like the Scots and Welsh.

"These are the peoples who were pushed to the fringes after the Roman invasion. People also think about the Celtic crosses, and about the whole pagan druid thing.
"But those are all the cliches. When the Romans arrived in Britain, they never described the people as Celts.
"The 'true Celts' were the continental Celts, although they spread across Europe."
Che Ernesto Guevara Lynch's statue is located in Galway, Ireland (lonelyplanet.com)
He said that Victorian experts made a big mistake in assuming that what we now call the modern Celtic languages were actually from those European Celts.
Patrick Sims-Williams of the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, contributes to the film, demonstrating that ancient Welsh was in Britain before these European Celts arrived.
Rebel "Galway Che" Lynch (drivebyplanet.com)
Neither is there much evidence of migration, according to DNA research from Trinity College in Dublin.
Mr. Malone said, "So the word 'Celt' as we understand it only actually started being used in that way in the 18th century, and it has taken on different meanings.

"What we think of as being Celtic is not necessarily the same as those original Celts.

"It has all been reinvented. It is a name for the tribes which were originally here in Britain and Ireland and their coming together has created this myth.

"Celtic Buddhism" in Ireland? It has already caught on among disaffected Irish-American Catholics in a big way. (Savaripa family/CelticBuddhism.org)
"And in that happening, the English have lost some sense of their individual identity."
He said Iron Age communities like Castell Henllys, visited during the program, were similar to Celtic settlements in Europe of the same period, but there were key differences. "Mostly, the similarities are merely copied designs, sometimes copied burial rites."
However the Celtic concept is still important, according to the program makers. In reaching his conclusion, Mr. Rudgley meets druids, sails in Celtic ships, rides Celtic chariots, and fights with Celtic weapons as he uncovers remarkable archaeological evidence that sheds a whole new light on the European culture.
Who are the Bretons?
He contends that, far from being marginal to who we are today, the Celtic tradition is a crucial part of what makes Britain.
Mr. Rudgley argues that the Celtic tradition is a golden thread that has been intertwined with the heart of Europe for thousands of years -- a Celtic "magic" that is still there for the taking, offering us a basis for a new Europe.
And the significant fact is that the Welsh language and related dialects spoken in places like Cornwall and Brittany preceded the arrival of both Roman and Celtic peoples.
"It is a much older language than that, which gives us some sort of common root and a much more ancient connection," added Mr. Malone.
"That precedes the Celts so it is far older than we might assume."
We certainly want to be Celts
We may not be Celts, historically speaking, but we certainly want to be. As [the] Channel 4 program points out, the word has now been reinvented and refers not to the original Celtic peoples of mainland Europe, but the modern "Celtic" areas.
Scotland has its Celtic football team while Wales, for a short period at least, had the Celtic Warriors rugby side.
Celtic music is sold in Irish and other traditional shops. Stones, which were in fact carved by medieval monks influenced by the Christian tradition are also described as "Celtic."
And the pagan traditions of our predecessors have been revived by the Eisteddfod druids, which is also sometimes described as a Celtic ceremony. There is also a huge industry of Celtic-themed jewellery, brooches, and so on, with traditional intertwined designs.
The number of businesses in Wales, Scotland, and Ireland with Celtic in their name is huge -- including Celtica Food, Celtic Alarms, and Celtic Inns.

Video stills from "The Celts"
"The Celts"
Druid, pagan, alien? Sweden (Saffan Anderson)
This is a fascinating journey through the history of the Celtic culture, following the trail back to pre-Roman times when the Celts were regarded as the masters of Europe.
The appeal of being a Celt has not diminished over the centuries. Their leaders were men and women of legend -- King Arthur of the Britons, the Warrior Queen Boudicca, and Vercingetorix the Gaul.
However, few people understand who the Celts actually were or what their true legacy is.
This powerful series cuts through the romanticism and clichéd images to give a true picture of Celtic culture. Presenter Richard Rudgley follows the trail back to pre-Roman times, looking into every aspect of Celtic life to show how they adapted to change.

Stonehenge at Sunset (MPanchenko/livescience.com)

"Sex and the Swastika" (video)

CC Liu, Pfc. Sandoval, Wisdom Quarterly; Channel 4
(hotona.com/Channel 4/Sex and the Swastika)
Obama? Beck? Hitler Not Hitler (ndempsey)
The private lives of the Nazis is a tale of sordid self-fulfillment at total odds with official policy and the theory of a pure master race [which borrowed ancient Indian Buddhist iconography and mythology and perverted ideas such as the swastika, "Aryan," vegetarianism, the "final solution," and the warrior-caste ideal of a chakravartin or world-ruler. It was no accident. Influenced by mystic Russian Theosophist Madame Blavatsky's writings, Ariosophy being a precursor to Nazism, Minister of Propaganda Joe Goebbels borrowed themes and memes from the exotic East opening up to Germans via early Western scholars, which were of particular interest to those in occult and spiritualist circles like the inner-party Nazis].
Hitler, Himmler, Goebbels, and many others indulged themselves while creating The Advisory Board for Population and Racial Policy to oversee the morals of the German population.
However, Britain's secret Special Operations Executive knew the truth and set up a special division to elaborate on it.
Working from a secret location in the English countryside they created "Black" propaganda and disseminated pornography to German troops and the German population illustrating the sexual perversions of their leaders. This is the tale of how the Nazis fiddled while Germany burned. More
"Sex and the Swastika"

What is a Doo Dah parade?

Wisdom Quarterly, Pasadena Doo Dah Parade 2012
Doo Dah Parade, Pasadena, 2012 (Ashley Wells/Wisdom Quarterly)
Circular carnival-style route

I was Hitler's food taster

Wisdom Quarterly; Associated Press; Al Jazeera; Boiseweekly.com
The Fuhrer naps (Eva Braun's private album/boiseweekly.com)
Margot, food taster (AP/US Army Signal Corps)
(AP/AJ) A German woman claims she was one of Adolf Hitler's food tasters but that, for more than half a century, she did not tell anybody what she did during the second world war.

A few months after her 95th birthday, Margot Woelk finally opened up about her secret, revealing that she spent two and a half years as one of the 15 young women who sampled Hitler's food to make sure it was not poisoned before it was served in the so-called Wolf's Lair.

"That was the heavily guarded command center in what is now Poland, where he spent much of his time in the final years of World War II," she said. "Hitler was so paranoid that the British would poison him, it was the talk of the day, we all knew about it."

Friday, April 26, 2013

36th occasional "Doo Dah Parade"!

Ashley Wells, Wisdom Quarterly; PasadenaDoodahParade.info, Saturday, April 27, 2013

Doo Dah Queen 2013 Susann Edmonds
The Great Firewall of China marched doing street theater illustrating torture, pollution, political corruption, the absence of free speech, and environmental degradation like pigs rotting in rivers.
The LohDown on Science drove a white Cadillac pitching a $1,000 prize to promote science in schools.

Fancy rolling dinner (pasadenastarnews.com)
The Roller Derby girls knocked it out of the rink with sexy outfits and sass galore.

And a walking, talking, and otherwise locomoting cast of kinky neighbors, oddfellows, assorted peace activists, and sexpots strutted up and down Colorado Boulevard.
This is where the annual Rose Parade usually reigns supreme, as fans threw (Monsanto Bt toxin) toxic corn tortillas, polluting marshmallows, barbecued-burned chemically-treated pig livers and other assorted spinal columns and offal called "hot dogs" stuffed in elongated white flour buns to takers, yuck, along with gaudy Mardi Gras beads and cheap candy.
Cat Mobile with mechanical claws, Doo Dah 2012 (Wells/WQ)

Get Lit/Ignite! Poetry Slam (April 26-27)

Wisdom Quarterly; GetLit.org (GLWordsIgnite)
GetLitClassicSlam.org - FREE tickets

Get Lit Classic Slam at the Wiltern, 2012

Inviting Quentin Tarantino 2013

SEE FEST (South East European Film Festival)

Amber Dorrian, Wisdom Quarterly; SeeFilmLA.org/SeeFest


Thursday, April 25, 2013

"When God Was a Girl" (BBC)

Dhr. Seven, Wisdom Quarterly; Bettany Hughes (BBC); J.C. Ozer (BogusZen)
Kwan Yin, Goddess of Compassion, Avalokiteshvara (Foxiangcn/flickr.com)

Kwan Yin, Goddess of Compassion
Historian Bettany Hughes visits a world where goddesses (devis) ruled the heavens (akasha-deva-loka) and Earth (Bhumi). She reveals why our ancestors thought of the divine as female -- perhaps revealing why we tend to view spirituality as potent yet feminine (when it must surely be androgenous, combining the best of both potentials).
Nurturing Mother Goddess
Traveling across the Mediterranean and the Near East, Hughes journeys to ever more remote places eventually encountering fearsome goddesses [dakinis, tantrikas, kinnaras, yakshis, garudas, nagis, Hariti, the Taras, etc.] who control life and death. 
Her search reaches modern India, where the Goddess is still a powerful force for hundreds of millions of Hindus.

Goddess trinity (srilankaguardian.org)
Immersing herself in the excitement of the Ma Durga Puja (devotional fest honoring Durga, the inaccessible or invincible), our historian experiences reverence for the goddess firsthand, revealing what the Goddess in all her manifestations means to Her devotees.

Pancika and the Buddhist Goddess Hārītī (right), holding a cornucopia, resting their feet on a bag of abundance. 3rd century, Takht-i Bahi, Gandhara, British Museum.