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The David

In Florence, Italy, people line up still in great numbers to see “The David” as I had done in 1985. I now recognize in Michelangelo’s masterpiece something which I had missed at the Galleria dell’Accademia, at the time. I have come to believe that this piece of sculpture that since August 1501 – twelve days after a republic was proclaimed in Florence – Michelangelo had worked on might well have been intended as a portrait of the institutional world of Michelangelo. The one in which the Church of Rome had become so large.

In the city of independence, the statue of David, itself a 4.34 meter marble giant, was produced between 1501 and 1504. This work commissioned by the City Council of Firenze soon after he had completed the Pieta that sits in Saint Peter’s Basilica. Was the size of the statue intended irony, in a story where the young boy killed a giant?

In his diary, Michelangelo wrote: “When I returned to Florence … the city council asked me to carve a colossal David from a nineteen-foot block of marble — and damaged to boot!” Dealing with his new fame. When Michelangelo had been David’s age he had become an apprentice to the painter Domenico Ghirlandaio, before going on to study sculpture in the Medici gardens and where he was invited into the household of Lorenzo de’ Medici, the Magnificent. There he met the next generation of Medici, two of whom later became popes (Leo X as well as Clement VII).

Knowledge without caring, belief without action. So was Michelangelo grieving over what has occurred to a beloved institution from which he had been immersed. Grieving like Mary Magdalene over the Messiah in the world, beyond belief.

Art that stays with us. Questioning how he had spent his time? For the power of the institution beyond caring for its people. The tradition which had begun from the culture of simple shepherds, which had come up against the Goliaths of the world in the beginning. When Goliath intended to kill a young David. Having to contend with the institutional vestments of giants which grew in power and might.

What had been going on in the world, as Columbus discovered a new world? Over what has been happening… after leaving and coming back, around 1501… In Florence. In this time, what had been happening to institutions? Because of a papacy?

Looking for the outward signs in art which unite us all. Again. As David considered taking another man’s life. Like Cain had once done, only now long after the Ten Commandments had been presented to Moses. The blasphemy of self-importance, in the present time, to take a life. When the institution of state approved. When done for a human cause? As a boy is forced into manhood.

A piece of marble to depict the initial scene that led one day to a kingdom. When a boy became a man. But it started with an evil act of murder with use of this slingshot. I got to view “The David,” said to be an image formed out of this deformed marble.

Why a focus on this moment in history? When Michelangelo was a young man himself. This was going to be his piece after his opening argument stated in the Pieta in Rome? When the artist was under the age of thirty. Why this moment in history? After the moment of the great Pieta left behind in Rome, in the scene when God was dead.

Where emperors organized the states of the empire into peace-keeping confederations. When the role of institutions was involved with peace-keeping, and living arrangements. As seen in Florence about the Romans down the road. In an all too real world.

And so the institutional world of Michelangelo, with all of its conflict. This David, on issues of life and death. If life had meaning. When the likeness which had begun the House of David had become so huge, like institutional religion in the days of Michelangelo. Seeing the world while living as a youth in the household of Lorenzo de’ Medici, the Magnificent. And so in the city of independence, this statue of liberty. Coming to realize, in the art, the godliness. This masterpiece says a lot to me about those creatures formed in God’s image and likeness. About all of us. With all of the conflict of humankind dealing with liberty.

THE WORLD. And all of its sickness. With an artistry in his works, noted for their deep sense of humanity if not place. Michelangelo’s world where emperors and popes organized the states of the empire into peace-keeping confederations. When the role of institutions was involved with peace-keeping, and living arrangements.

Michelangelo’s WORLD. You had to wonder what affect this world would have on your life as an artist… If you were Michelangelo. And so the tortuous ordeal which occurred a couple of thousand years before. Belief and connection, in that image of David which was so huge. When the likeness of someone who had begun the House of David had become so huge, like institutional religion? And that the world was never the same. After both a life, a death. Because David’s son Solomon had built the first great temple. Perhaps not too unlike the churches being built in Florence and Rome at the time.

Not yet questioning how he would spend his life? When the world had been thought to be flat, with an artistry noted by art history in his works for their deep sense of human anatomy. In Michelangelo’s world where emperors and popes organized the states of the empire into peace-keeping confederations. When the role of institutions was involved with peace-keeping, and living arrangements then in the Holy Roman Empire which in his lifetime had been fighting the Ottomans for over a century, with particular turbulence in nearby Hungary. The battles of Christian Europe with the Moslem Turks was why Christopher Columbus had been sent to find a western route to the east. When the world was thought to be flat.

David, living perhaps as in the days of Pope Sixtus IV, the Franciscan pope from 1471 through August 1484 when one of his first acts was to declare a renewed crusade against the Ottoman Turks, after Hungary had been fighting the Ottomans for close to a century. (The Ottomans were to descend upon Vienna in 1529.) As pope, Sixtus IV issued a papal bull allowing local bishops to give to physicians and artists the bodies of executed criminals and unidentified corpses for dissection which allowed the anatomist Vesalius along with Titian’s pupil Jan Stephen van Calcar to complete the revolutionary medical/anatomical text De humani corporis fabrica. And this had an affect on the art of Michelangelo.

And so a sculptures of the lowest of the low shepherd of the day, who somehow was willing to sacrifice to affect change. In the name of God. Divinely inspired to take on the giants. When God was bigger than anyone ever thought.

And so Michelangelo. So what had he set out to say in this piece of art? At the beginning of his artistic life, not unlike this moment in the life of King David. And so pretty much alone. The lowest of the low shepherd of the day. In a scene wired for some kind of narrative, to an audience, why this sculptures? When a sculpture conveys a reality, you can get a glimpse into the way Michelangelo prayed? Michelangelo, leaving behind for a while the city of Rome to return home. In the age when Pope Sixtus IV, famed for his nepotism (six of the thirty-four cardinals he named were nephews), had started the Spanish Inquisition. Perhaps with so little appreciation for the history of Chosen People, like David. But where his papal accomplishments included the sponsorship of the Sistine Chapel, and the Vatican Archives. Pope Sixtus IV, who called upon his papal army to engage in war in Italy, in the War of Ferrara, fought between papal forces and Pope Sixtus’ Venetian allies against Ercole I d’Este, duke of Ferrara, capital city north-northeast of Bologna in the Province of Ferrara in Emilia-Romagna. In 1482–1484, when Michelangelowas a child. To check Venetian expansion in the terra firma, from the vantage point of the duke of Ferrara, in the battle of David versus Goliath? Because the city of Venice had risen in temporal power at this point in history – its high-point of Venetian territory – like never again. In the days before there ever was an Italy. It was when his ambassadors declared to him the terms of the Peace of Bagnoio, arrived at without consulting the pope, which killed Pope Sixtus when he was thrown into a violent rage, declaring the peace to be shameful and humiliating, as his long-suffering gout flew to his heart; and the following day, he died. If gout could fly.

To see the real humanity in a statue. If you did not know what was going on in the world when this art was created, how could you ever understand what an artist was trying to say? When the Medicini family had been expelled from Florence in November 1494. Due to tyranny instead of responsible government, like with the Inquisition under way for the first time, with a vengeance, in Spain with a blasphemy of self-importance, as the institution of state /church approved.  Behold the humanity, in this moment when David might have thought that he never was coming back. And by naming our denial and grief, we take the denial out of the shadows. David willing to give his life, offering up his body, for his people? Like a good shepherd. But in facing his own death, electing to take the life of Goliath at the same time.

Coming to realize, in the art, the godliness! In the human ordeal. At a moment when David might have thought that he never was coming back, to recognize the greatness stripped bare. Like that Isaac moment on Mount Moriah. David allegedly willing to give his life for his people. When the capacity is stretched of a young man to change a perspective. Only through sacrifice. David, considered in his day to be the lowest of the low – a shepherd boy willing to do something about it. Willing to give his life for his people, but in facing his own death, electing to take a life at the same time. David sinking to the level of Goliath, by killing. In self-defense, but contrary to the Jewish Sixth Commandment, “Thou shall not murder,” which the Christian world changed the translation to mean, “Thou shall not kill.”

Even with stones. With no exclusion when drafted into war. The tortuous ordeal inherited, in the likeness, of a king, or in a sinner. Like me. For one who took life, the world was never the same. Like God gave and took life, each day? And building a temple, to do something about it. By naming our denial and grief, we take the denial out of the shadows. In amending my life, when we build temples. And churches. In the name of God. After both a life, a death. When small stones become cornerstones, in the future. That I too may somehow be connected and may rise to greatness, with and for others. Because to different degrees, we were all sinners trying to learn how to pray — even after what occurred in a beloved institution — even after the tortuous ordeal for those who tried to still believe in an institution inherited.

Power and might. When perhaps even God grows, through the test of the different degrees of belief, of hope, of love over life, in people like me — in our ordeals over the blasphemy of self-importance. As more and more human kings attempt to become giants, in the name of liberty. Without the humility of the sons of David.

 

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Pater Noster

“Receive, O Lord, all my spirit. That which You have bestowed upon me. That which has become me, I give it all back to Thee. That which was in all of my memory. Take my entire will, all my desire, along with my fertility and whatever understanding that I possess. May Your hallowed name then accompany me, with Your Will and Your Spirit. Take my fertility along with my passion for living — that which has come from all of this liberty. Take it, and give me more.” – modified Suscipe prayer of Ignatius of Loyola

So may the love for God and the fellowship of His Holy Spirit be with us. Hallowed, on this day. May you become more than what appears, in your trans-missions. To accompany all of your short-comings. In the movement in the story of life, with all of your deficit spending.

And so the above fertility prayer, with the debt owed to all those who preceded me.

And so the above fertility prayer, like at the Offertory. With all that you have been given by the past, in your quest for discovery, to look upon, within, beyond persons and things … and discover the connection. Inside an institution which taught millions how to pray. Together. And you were thought to be a romantic, but hated to go to church or temple? The one which appeared to be crumbling. As the creed changed in the me-generation from “We believe” to “I believe.” In a world where the Muslim God was awakening Christianity and Judaism. Over Birthright, and human life. And all the conflict over public and private accommodation. As the largest church in the world lost its sense of mission, no longer appealing to distant people in their own languages. More like the days of the old Roman Empire or the Third Reich when people were forced to communicate in the manner of the dominant power. This is what is called the New Evangelizatin.

“I am in love with my God. And my God was in love with me.” The amazing thing was that day waking up in a true reality that my God was in love with me. And the deep feeling within. Over the connections. The feelings. When you were not in love with my God alone, but One Who was shared. With others.

So despite the interpretations of the New Missal with the new creed, as one poor example of this New Evangelization of Benedict XVI — with something lost forever, if not sacrificed — stealing my fervor if not my perspective, the wide-open lingering question to the Father of Faith, “Where is the lamb?” And note the translation of the Pater Noster is not MY FATHER, but OUR FATHER.

“Receive, O Lord, all my spirit. That which You have bestowed upon me. That which has become me, I give it all back to Thee. That which was in all of my memory. Take my entire will, all my desire, along with my fertility and whatever understanding that I possess. I return ‘it.’ ‘It’ being the sacrifice, yet in a much smaller way. ‘All’ is yours now, in a much smaller way. Dispose of ‘it,’ according to the birth right of forgiveness, because Your love and Your Grace are ENOUGH for me. May Your hallowed name then accompany me, with Your Will and Your Spirit. Take my fertility along with my passion for living — that which has come from all of this liberty. Take ‘it,’ and give me more.” – modified Suscipe prayer of Ignatius of Loyola

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Multiplication and Divisions

Boom! The Big Bang Theory. Creation.

To recognize My God. Abraham. When religion began dividing a people. A man in need of God. A man symbolic of the division between humans – with Hagar and Sarah. The rivalry. Having to decide about the power-base which has surrounded you, since your birth. About present valuations.

The movement in the story. Leaving, coming back, in an under-populated world. The repeated themes of fertility. Of exile and banishment. Of water, of floods. Of wells, of drought. Of enslavement. Of a way of life that could not be escaped from. The slow movement of nomads over time and space populated by mostly people living in denial, if not fear, of God. With themes of birthrights, of power and might, on life and death, so the comparative approach to the real God by fathers to sons, with that identity commandment.

Coming to know, to recognize God and His Image, concerning reproductions, prayer, intimacy, love. The relationship with a mission to love and to serve.

The movement in the story. Leaving, coming back. The females missing so much in the action of the story. In the stories of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The nomads all with barren wives. In clearly an under-populated world. The repeated themes of fertility, and the arrangements — with land. Exile and banishment, from land. The Promise Land, for its fertility. And a return to a place by the next generation with a greater degree of exercised freedom.

The relationship theme. The conflicts which moved a couple. Did you ever note how much the women taken as spouses were outsiders? Except for Sarah. Go back and see from where Sarah had come, in the story, in the arrangement, of Chosen People. With the relationship theme, within a keep-to-yourself culture. In a part of the world where a stranger had difficulty breaking into the mainstream. It is said that Minnesotans have this tendency to keep outsiders at a comfortable distant. Like the new people at work.

In a state, comparatively speaking, with a high percentage of homegrown residents. Specifically seventy percent of the people are native-born in Minnesota. “They’ve never been,” said Cathy Shaefer, in describing insular people not intentionally cliquish, “alone before.” People perhaps only too comfortable with their lives. This statistic of homegrown people, provided by the Department of the Interior, was so high thirty years ago that it was described as “overwhelming.”

Social life. And so the story of nomads, settling down. In this Minnesota culture that Garrison Keillor had made a living describing. In Seattle this same social malaise is known as the Seattle Chill. People of color might conclude that the missing genuine welcome is due to racism.

It was the difficulty of all transplants. The burning bush that Moses found is still in Egypt. When it was hard moving into a new environment to be ignited. Readers often overlook the importance of ‘place’ in a story that defines everything. Perhaps it is due to the old Scandanavian heritage of Minnesota, where people here are still described as so generous, yet so detached to the newcomer. And like a river or a mountain, the old Norwegians and Swedes have set the tone for the rest of us to follow.

When you are born into something: And much like the challenge faced by each generation, to make the God of my ancestors a Living God, so the communal challenges of a people set apart to live in community. With the movement in the story, as valuations changed. Finding the quiet humility in the search for a homeland with God.

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The Storyboard

Art. To sell one book at a time. The magic. On issues of an established baseline of shared belief. When you see shared belief grow into the public sector. The developing bonds of trust.

In all the personal vanities of religion, God. Beyond the different divisions and conferences of Judaism, beyond the 20,000 fragmentations of Christianity. The vehicles of travel. The movement in the story. With Islam and Bhudha. With Taoism and Confuscious.

An arranged marriage. Looking for stability for your kids. When a love based upon romance goes bad. A marriage arranged for sex? When the charm eroded. When you lost your sex appeal. Letting someone place something inside of you. Like an idea about the future. It was probably the most feminine experience for a male. When the future was always left inside a woman.

To write about China. And to come from a culture, from a community that fostered concepts of one child per couple. Without protest, without voice, without memory, based upon oral tradition? Where the Gladys Kravitzes had united to formulate fertility policy. Politicians not so unlike the Russian Bolsheviks who broke away from socialism and like in the Youtube video called “I am God,” imposed their concepts of money and living on everyone. With new standards of living for health care and military service. And work. When one day the people pretended to work, behind the Iron Curtain. Like deep echos of both deep cannons and the neighborhood dog, the people there were still frightened by echoes in the dark of barking animals.

Private matters with such a public affect. When you see shared belief grow into institutions. Powerful institutions. Knowledge. Wealth. Fertility. Love. God. As the private and the public sectors intersect.

Art, as the measuring stick. What was the artist trying to say? In Art and language and culture? When the measuring stick of currency was oh so broken. When the language of art revealed your caste.

Denial. Acceptance. The movement. Of scatter-brained nomads, amidst so much stimuli, looking for God in all things.

Presumed dead. The anger. The fear. Following a war. Missing. Like Abel. At what point did the authorities allow a “missing person” report? The stories of identity. With poets and bards trying to capture in words the spirits within, into stories without. Into the terra firma world. (Looking for images and reflections of ourselves in other cultures.)

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The attraction to Mystery. The magic in just the attempt to identify God. For someone else, through issues of an established baseline of shared belief. How much these stories – a primate trying to find the measured words – meant, to me. Looking for a vocabulary concerning spiritual matters. At some point to come to a story. And you are in the story. How much these stories mean, to me.

TO create humanity, with a desire for God. These eleven apostles. Waking up when their traveling companion was declared presumed dead. The thing buried by Fear? The story over and over: born into everything, and losing it. In the garden. And going in search once again. With this mutual desire. God and His people. And fertility. The shared choice to love, to reproduce. The things that stayed with you. Every day. The collegiality. The unchanging law. When you appeared to be losing everything at the end of the story. And always the fear. Of exile.

When you no longer were Chosen People? How things kept changing. Contemplating the change. And the emotions, the perspective which went with the change. In the outside world. Did you feel the inner tension of Cain, not satisfied to stay in one place –like the Garden — and not satisfied to till the soil. The inner tenion over accepting that he himself was from dust, and all the irony in the turmoil and the dust-up after killing his brother.

The buried anger. The buried pain. The exile. Until the day it came out in the wandering. With a deep sense of good and evil, about unrighteous affluence. Those who desired to hang onto what they had.

Power. The evolution. Of human power. The battle over acceptance of power with its institutions. Faith versus reason, in the aftermath of the Renaissance. What was the artist trying to say? In the art of the Renaissance? What was the artist trying to say in his/her Art and language and culture?

Quarterly reports of the prophets. Navigating closeness. To stay close to God. Life, like on a great river. Looking for mentors in life. People trying. People really caring to stay close to God. Like Adam had not. Mostly because of Eve.

Adam lost his mentor about the time Eve came around. When he learned for the first time we were all gonna die. Somehow. With others. Or alone. When you were forced. Into relationships, with your co-workers. Or born into relationships. Like Cain. In family. Not unlike Eve. When you were born into something – the movement in the story – born to be this tiller of soil. The movement in the story, with your assigned place, or job description. And your jealous human perspective about it all. And anger.

Power. Force. Authority. To return to the world we had before a crime was committed. Talion law: An eye for an eye. The change from the Talion Law, called Reconstruction. Converting mechanical energy of downward-flowing water into thermal and acoustical energy. In the age of terror….that replaced the age of consolidations. On matters of faith and morals, after the leveraged buyouts. Energy of Chosen People, given some direction in life. The Dissipation, with a concept of a wandering formalized. In the mainstream. With a certain idea of movement and birthrights and inheritance.

Run. Hide. Escape. Missing. Presumed dead. Following a war. The anger. The fear. Again.

The loss of an audience, without a story board. The power. Of Art. The need for the story board, for the artist. . . to figure out the puzzle. I happen to talk to my ophthalmologist twenty-four hours ago – my one time cross-country captain. And he mentioned the importance of a story board, beyond long distance running, that he heard a world-famous author mention at a recent dinner at the high school we once had attended. So how can you either put together or try to read the Hebrew Bible without a story board? Where are you taking Me? How are you describing Me? The bulls in a china shop, what are you doing to the vehicle? How are you tending it?

And about the end of the story. In the mystery, where does the story line end? The loss of an author, without a story board. With themes of population. And growth, in fertility stories. In what had always been arranged marriages. After Abraham. Then the modern world, is God still in the arranged marriages?

To lead to an end. To tie it all together. What you need to live. Beyond yourself. With a certain esteem, in this creation. With seeds and harvest. To try again, In another new spring.

The ultimate honor killing on Good Friday that so many Muslim women could identify with. In not another crime against humanity, but of divine sacrifice. For Resurrection.

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Homeless

Union. Relationships. That you might have, should have, what Adam had, what Eve had. Information, knowledge, or a personal experience – a family experience – of God’s love. When there still was only the commandment about the apple, focused upon knowing God, supplemented with a command focused upon knowing Eve, ‘cleaving’ in either bond, or in a kind of separation.

Was it worth your time, creating a relationship? In developing a common point of view, about an overall aim of the relationship. In enhancing connectedness to this world. When there had been something missing in my life?

The anger of Cain. Yeah, kids often seem oddly numb. About the hard questions. About these unexpected living arrangements, unprepared for growth. Over why Adam and Eve had been kicked out of the garden. When your kids did not feel so bad about something that they had never done. Like eating fruit, from one long lost tree. When the world was so unfair.

To be so dependent on the Promise Land, despite all of this freedom. Was it about expectations – my expectations about the world? About where an independent nomad might go? Because greatness was so lonely by one’s self. Descendants of believers who did not ask, did not dare ask this generation whether the one true God would seem relevant to them now in such an overcrowded world. Did not dare even ask if God, amidst all of the personal pronouns used, had ever been relevant to the parents. These Tree of Life stories about Chosen People, when God always met a person one on one, as someone developed their own relationship to the Tree of Life narrative, set in a world with enough people.

About your greatness. Get organized. Prove it. In a relationship. And then in the world. In the united state. My first ideals or the past and of “saving” the past, was based upon the world that my ancestors had given me. I had inherited it all. Like Isaac would. Like Jacob stole. Some, through the people I was related to. Some, through material wealth. From their DNA. Earned or inherited.

Looking for acceptance. When in the under-populated world there had to be movement in the story, by Adam and Eve. After the denial, the fear, and the inner conflict of nomads who wanted to keep moving, to bring goodness into the world, with the expectation to put down roots.

Acceptance about the garden. About the Promise Land, when there was a planet to inhabit. Those living arrangements. When you were just for the most part unconscious, navigating closeness, with a degree of cognitive love, beyond the involuntary cognitive and emotional state of your family life – broken. Then the Lord called to the man and asked him, “Where are you?“ The winds of change. How fast things happen. After just one bite of the apple.

To slowly think and understand. Who was this God? Wanting your own kids or grandkids to think. About their past. And the custody rights. Before all the unraveling. Emigrants having to leave the Garden. Through no fault of their own. Recognizing the distance in the story. When both men were heroes in the story, as Eve, as Adam, had been heroes. Waiting, to know more about the custody rights to God. To the God of Adam and the God of Eve. But not understanding yet how to pray?

To slowly think and understand. After Adam, what was the point of view of the next generation, in the search for the divine? About fertility? The keeper of flocks. The tiller of soil. The first job descriptions. Cain and Able. When they both honored God from the work of human hands.

And then after Cain, what was the point of view of the next generation? Were we all really related to him? When he was born into his job description. With Cain’s hostility in his part in the food he was eating every day. When it was his brother who was the nomad. Who got to tend the animals. Long before the day when the Egyptians thought shepherds were the lowest form of existence.

“When you should have what we have.” Freedom. Human rights. Free will. And original sin. Even when you had lost everything – the garden – which had seemed to provide meaning, which connected you to God. The lost birthright, in Chapter One, to the garden. And then you were forced to one day leave it all behind.

The anger at the unfairness. Of systems of slavery, or new systems that replaced them, with the sweat of human brows. As the tiller of the soil, tied down to one place. Not all that dissimilar to the anger at having to bear children? The imbalance in “relationship work,” and a resulting anger? More conspicuous – but not to me – that these were my kids, inheriting my sins.

In the Promise Land. In America. Now the missing bonds. The anger at the unfairness of the world. Homeless sons and daughters of immigrants. The ones who left the Old World behind. And now years later these children mostly of divorced parents? And God, sensitive to the dominant culture. Sensitive to the gap in the living arrangement. And more attuned to all those gaps, and the inequality of the gaps in the living arrangement – than the insensitivities of an old world, with the ideals or the past and of “saving” the past, based upon the world that my ancestors had given me which I had inherited.

So this child left wondering, how could such great parents be kicked out of the garden? For just eating the apple? And why should they lose custody rights? To the garden. Over a simple apple. How can God not love my mother, or father? Even if, in an updated story, they had been divorced? And why lose custody rights to the garden. Over one simple apple. Simply for eating an apple. Who could believe?

The living arrangements. For refugees. For nomads. With a delicate balance between separate identity and a connectedness, was God homeless in His world? Did God identify with nomads and shepherds, created in His image, formed in His likeness? In a world that is rich with possibilities for connectedness and attachment, the heart and soul of intimacy, the lifelong challenge, begins with a home. And an identity which came from a home. And then it was gone.

To move populations through righteous anger. Because, as Chaim Potok writes, “Something that is yours forever is never precious.” So a promise land. With freedom and safety. With an overall aim of the relationship – in a marriage, in a home, in a homeland — developing a common point of view, about an overall aim of the relationship. But you had to work at it.

Was it worth your time? When marriage was really about about trying to find a moral consensus. F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote about themes of youth, beauty and riches. And that was the world of modern pop culture, of America today, ruled especially by beauty and wealth. All the things glamorized by the media, of modern America. Fitzgerald wrote with characters that keep trying but at the end of the story, never really found themselves, in this country formed by people who left the Old World behind.

And so in this land of immigrants, the ongoing struggle for an identity,when you moved away from your ethnic group.

Killing your own brother? When Cain was at the end of the story still my own son, in the eye of Eve and Adam. And all that they had left. Did you ever wonder what happened to Cain at the end of the day, after he had killed Abel?

Banishment. Exile. Excommunication. ‘Who in the name of God do you think you are?’ Cain and Able. The intent to take a life. Ishmael and Isaac, with their father. Jacob, with his brother and his own father. In the story of FIRSTS, taking a life. And the ongoing struggle with the refugee question, in this land of immigrants, dealing with nomads.

And so Cain, in his quest for mercy. And perhaps in his struggle, in his own “relationship work,” to learn how to pray. In a leadership role in his own heroic quest for salvation. When prayer always re-cast the human image of God. And Cain, so badly in need of God.

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Top Secret America

Living in a dystopia, outside the system. And so the media organizations like Strafor.

There is this worldview under the American guise of being an utopia, of this society in a repressive and controlled state. The evidence is brought forth by Wikileaks because the broadcast media supported by the system was not really telling the truth.

In the Garden There was a smugness of a nation which believed in giving up freedom in return for the Department of Homeland Security, without addressing the underlying problem of privilege. As the rich kept getting richer. Trying with a greater difficulty to defend its borders from outsiders.

It was Vincent Punzo who said: “Every affluent society experiences a guilt that is connected directly with its privileged circumstances.”

Accusing Stratfor of involvement in wide range of legally or morally questionable research activities for private corporations, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said upon the release of five thousand emails of the Texas-based subscription-based publisher Stratfor: “On the surface it presents as if it’s a media organisation providing a private subscription intelligence newsletter,” the activist, who is awaiting extradition to Sweden on rape charges said in London. “But underneath it is running paid informants networks.”

What happened when you lowered yourself to the same immoral tactics that the oppressors used to retain power? David, with his armies. Killing, as Cain, as Moses, maybe as God did in the story of Noah. So you were this underground movement, using Acts of God, taking life?

And torture. Ideas and works about dystopian societies often explore the concept of humans abusing technology and humans individually and collectively coping, or not being able to properly cope, with technology which has progressed far more rapidly in different kinds of repressive social control systems – various forms of active and passive coercion – than humanity’s spiritual evolution.

The revelations, in the secret world of intelligence, included that Israel had last year carried out a successful covert attack on Iran’s secret nuclear facilities.

Did you note the disconnect in the dialogue? In the disconnect between the Creator and the offenders, who had heard God moving about in the Garden at the breezy time of the day. And the offenders hid themselves amongst the trees of the garden. And so the discussion:

“Where are you?”

“I heard you in the garden, but I was afraid because I was naked,” said Adam, never really answering the question, apparently coming out of hiding. “So I hid myself.”

And God, exposed to them in their nakedness. Did you ever note at what point in the story Adam and/or Eve ever do get named, in the Tree of Life story? Was it, with Adam and Eve together exposed directly to God, not until after the punishment? It was Adam who called his wife Eve, in this Divine Comedy, well after all the rivers get names. Eve, in addressing God directly for the very first time in the story – at the sentencing – blamed the serpent. “The serpent tricked me.” And the serpent had been at the scene of the crime. Eve, never identified by name, at this point in the story, only as “the woman.” Note always the nameless characters in the Book of Genesis, for what they did.

In the secret world of intimacy, of intelligence, as you lowered yourself to the same immoral tactics that the oppressors used to retain power, did you ever note the very first commandment connected with the Tree of Knowledge, involved knowing God?

It was just bad base-running? Running on his/her own. Missing signs. The disconnect in the dialogue. Misinterpreting the indicator, from the Creator. With now the need to get back to home plate? After being sent outside the borders of the Garden.

Or striking out. Banished children of Eve, living in a dystopia, outside the system. In a private sector without rules … without any constitution. Like all of the subcontractors for Top Secret America. On the Fort Meade Army base, there are 80 government tenants on the 6.3 million square feet campus which are surrounded by 112 acres of parking spaces. That abbreviations for “top secret” and “sensitive compartmented information” – means few people are allowed to know what information the cable there transmits. TS/SCI.

Originally hacked last year by the network Anonymous, these five thousand emails would reveal private details of individuals who had worked or given information to the Stratfor organisation, the Texas-based subscription-based publisher providing political, economic and military analysis to help customers reduce risk.

Rejecting claims that there was anything improper in the way it handled information gathered, Stratfor released a statement which said: “Stratfor has worked to build good sources in many countries around the world, as any publisher of global geopolitical analysis would do. We have done so in a straightforward manner and we are committed to meeting the highest standards of professional conduct. Having had our property stolen, we will not be victimized twice by submitting to questioning about them.”

What went on between the Creator and the offenders who had heard God moving about in the Garden at the breezy time of the day, when there had been two people but only one rule. And so their sense of guilt. And wanting back in.

Anonymous account said about its overall five million hacked emails: “There’s a treasure trove of nasty details in those emails. We think there’s something for everyone. We promised you those mails and now they’ll finally be delivered. Five million emails at your pleasure,” said the Anonymous network.

Living outside the borders, with agencies living both inside and outside the system.  With Platte River Networks.  With SECNAP Network Security Corp.  With Datto, Inc.  Living  outside the borders, inside at the Fort Meade cluster, businesses is conducted in top-secret work with an estimated 30,000 people reading, listening to and analyzing an endless flood of intercepted conversations 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Global Positioning System on my car dashboard suddenly begins giving incorrect directions, trapping the driver in a series of U-turns, because the government is jamming all nearby signals, nearing the epicenter of Fort Meade. And the sub-contractors are not limited by the shared belief in the foundation document called the United States Constitution.

On the surface it is presented in the interest of the security of these borders, of the government of the United States. But the operations work beyond the NSA perimeter, in the private sector where the motive is only to make money. With companies which thrive off the National Security Agency and the other fifteen intelligence organizations. At 681 locations.

There was a fierceness of children and grandchildren who have been deprived of liberty all of their lives. When parents were banished from the Utopian Garden. When the tiller man son killed the hunting son. Because the hunting son’s nomadic way of life looked to be so much better. To the man whose line of work tied him to one place.

Vincent Punzo who said: “Every affluent society experiences a guilt that is connected directly with its privileged circumstances.”

The exile away from the Promise Land. Debate about the role of intelligence in protecting an utopia occurs only when something goes wrong. The government then is forced to investigate. Or when an unauthorized disclosure of classified information turns into news. Like with WikiLeaks.

“And that’s how I became interested in charting not only the changes that were triggered by different limitations.”

To record, by words, all of this. To put, in my own words, the sacredness of life. Of liberty … and free will. And the cost of free will, in an age when kids were using cameras in their phones, as a substitute for words. All of this, with or without feeling.

Places …. In the beginning. In stories about Genesis. Utopias: No Place Else. In the story of the Garden … before utopias become dystopias.

“Oh that could never happen here.”

Police states. Living in police states, with unlimited power over its citizens. Like with the German affect where a planned economy is planned and controlled by corporatist and fascist elements. As goods are more difficult to obtain, or are dangerous. Like with health care… with wants and needs, but characters totally at the mercy of the state-controlled economy which is taking over properties, perhaps at the time of death. Or decisions about life and death.

In the addicted world, you came to learn that the person who distrusts themselves has no touchstone for reality – the touchstone can only be oneself. A labyrinth of attitudes is interposed between such a person and reality itself. A human who cannot trust himself, trusts no one and consequently has no mercy.  And that is what comes out from living in top secret.

The Land of Liberty. And Free Will. And Human Rights. It was the season of year to reflect on gratitude and to recognize your own sins. To seek mercy. And to change.
Copyright © 2011.

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In the Garden of the Beasts

Trying to profit with all of those laying the foundation for the new police state, building the best police state ever. Google. Apple. Yahoo and all who collaborate for profit against the principles concerning the human rights that I was born into. In the Bill of Rights. And me along with them.