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America

As our country seems to be walking backwards into a darker time, it seems more critical now than ever to take stock of who we are as Americans. What we stand for. Why we were, not so long ago, a beacon of hope and freedom to so many in the world.

Let me first say that we are still that America. The sheer number of people taking action against anti-American values is astounding. We do not, and have never required that our president or administration follow suit. The polls bear this out. Our confidence and trust in our administration is at an all time low and activism is at an all time high.

So what are we all fighting for? The America that has evolved and grown strong due to our unwavering believe in freedom, human rights, equality, justice, charity and our historical efforts to encourage these values with both our allies and our enemies.

These are not partisan issues. Historically we have banded together to preserve and protect these values. If they are threatened by other countries or even by our own administration, we have not only the right, but the duty to defend them.

Gone are the days when we can feel better after a tragedy such as we’ve just witnessed in Charlotte, by a denouncement from our president. We can not rely on our leadership to have sound judgment or even a moral compass with which to guide us. As dedicated to our political parties as we are, neither democrats or republicans can preserve our country and our values by blindly following the leader.

So what is it exactly in America that we are fighting now? The answer is fear. Fear of terrorists, religion, refugees and ironically immigrants who make up the vast majority of us all.  These fears are stoked by stifling the press, telling lies and feeding on the worst part of our nature. Our distrust and prejudice. The tragic reality is that these are all unwarranted fears. Most of the terrorism we have faced in America has not been at the hand of foreigners but rather our own citizens. Any and all actions against religion, immigrants and refuges will not solve this problem since they are not actually the cause.

So what happens when you lash out in fear without looking directly at the cause? You make bad decisions and mistakes. Mistakes that cost us beyond the lives we’ve lost. Mistakes that threaten America and the tenets our country was founded on. This is in reality our greatest threat and should be our biggest fear.  How do we as Americans address fear? By confronting it. By recognizing that we can overcome any and all obstacles by coming together and focusing on what we all have in common and using the very freedom constitutionally mandated to us to preserve our values as a nation.

Freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of expression, equality, justice and the consistent effort of Americans to reach out beyond our borders and work toward a more just and peaceful planet. These are not partisan issues. These are American issues, and we as Americans should not tolerate anything less.

It is in the spirit of holding dear to the ideals created and maintained throughout our history by Republicans, Democrats, Independents and through the efforts all political parties, down to every grass roots community organization that we will move forward, grow strong and be the country that does not just speak the words, but lives true to these ideals, setting the highest standards with honor, integrity and unwavering resolve.

 

 

 

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Drop the Divinity

I suspect this post won’t gain me any followers. I can only hope to hold onto the small brave handful I already have, but life is risk. Is it not?

I am going to speak to, about and against religion. Not spirituality. Not the relationship you have with your God. Just organized, fundamentalist, dogmatic and admit it or not, judgmental religion.

There are thousands of sects in Christianity alone. Most of whom believe that they have the only path to heaven. If you belong to one of these religious groups then by mere statistics, you are wrong. If there were only 5000 religious groups and there actually was only one path to heaven, then 4999 of you are wrong. Honestly your odds are very bad.

So why does anyone believe in their own faith so vehemently?

I think it’s because of one thing. Divinity. Why is that a problem?

The birth of almost every religious group is always founded on the divinity of their God. This means that at the very start, you are separated. You can not hope to live up to the expectations of the divine. You can not hope to be anything like the divine. You exist on a much lower spiritual plane. The irony here is that many of you still believe you can speak for the divine, but this is off point. What I’m getting at here is that when you start by creating a separation, you continue to do so by separating your beliefs from other beliefs, your religion from other religions and in a very real sense, your connection to the rest of the world. You have created something a gang. A class system. A tribe if you will that believes so strongly in one separate idea that you will not only defend it with your life but use it as a sick kind of providence to kill others with.

What in Gods name gives anyone the right to kill others? Your Bible? Your Koran? The Damapada? These are great books. Holy books. But are they being read to get closer to God or to get further from the heathens that don’t belong to your sect?

So suppose, just suppose that you dropped the divinity portion of your belief. Hard to do I know, but just think about it. Look at all the great spiritual leaders throughout history. Jesus, Gandhi, Mohammad, Buddha and so many more. Look at how they lived. They did not separate themselves from others. They were not caught up in some idea of their own divinity. They loved people. Inspired people and their message was always non-violent, open to all and peaceful. It was simply a higher level of understanding what it is to love.

So what God awful thing would happen if we just stopped believing in our guy being the one and true divine God? First of all, we may better understand that the path these great spiritual beings took up is obtainable. Not just an ideal but rather a path that anyone of us can take up that will lead us closer to understanding what it is to be spiritual in nature. What it is to truly understand divinity within us all. What it is to love unconditionally and what it is to live on a higher spiritual plane.

Without this all encompassing idea of separation we would be free to come together and share what is really divine in all faiths. Love. There is no war, hatred, jealousy, bitterness or death in that word.

Rather it is the foundation and cornerstone of every faith, every religion. So why is it not the very cornerstone of our lives?

Drop the Divinity and get on with the business of love.

Altered Time

So often when I’m writing an instrumental, I don’t really know what it’s about until it’s done. It’s rather like waking up from an odd dream…the meaning of which can only be deciphered once you’re awake.

Such was this song. While traveling recently something happened to change a course. Time, while initially was traveling in a predictable direct fashion, was altered if you will by an event. An unexpected meeting. An intersecting if you will, who’s origins can be traced back many months, but who’s end could never be predicted.

Now that I’ve totally confused everyone, including myself, I’ll shut up. I hope the end result is much more worth listening to.

Paul Solves World Peace!

You know, I’m not an engineer. Ok, so we have that straight right? And perhaps because I’m not, I don’t realize the kind of engineering “outside of the box” radical thinking that it must take to design a bathroom shower that is higher than like five feet. It must be some kind of technological wonder than man can just not fathom. Oh some have tried certainly. Take this photo for example… Ok, good idea. Take a pipe, bend it upward. But then DOH…he bends it back down at the end. This took all weekend.

shower-head-extension-hoseSo ok, this is not the end of the world. This is an uptown problem. There are much more important issues we should concern ourselves with. I get that. So, ok. World Peace. That’s one worth thinking about. Let’s see. Yeah ok. Here’s how to solve world peace. “Everyone Stop Fighting”.  We good?  Ok, can someone get back to work on the shower head?

#tootallforthisride

#worldpeacesolved

Loop

I have several problems however I have always acted as my own therapist. This would have worked out fine had I been more qualified. This is a problem. I have several problems…

911 and the Fear of the Truth

Today is the 14th anniversary of the 911 attack. The most devastating event in American history in so many ways, that a thousand blogs can not describe the changes that took place that day and in the United States since.

When I think back on the days just subsequent to the attack, I remember very clearly this struggle to find out who did this and why. As a nation we were desperate for an answer and in that desperation, we took at face value everything the president and the media fed to us with barely a hint of doubt. Who was Osama Bin Laudin? Most of us had never heard his name before. The back story we heard about him fit the crime and so we embarked on what we still call the “War Against Terrorism” and every government office, airport and even the public library began tightening up security. Red, yellow and orange alerts kept everyone on edge for a few years until we literally got tired of being afraid.

Now several years later and we vow not to forget. But exactly what is it we have not forgotten? My point here is what is the truth? Unless you’ve lived under a rock (which may not be that bad an idea) you have certainly seen pictures like these. This

1

flight-93-crash-siteis a photo of the underside of the plane that struck the second tower with an inlay of what the United Airlines plane really looks like.

The photo underneath is a picture of a big hole in a field in Pennsylvania where flight 93 was said to have crashed. No bodies, no debris and no airplane. Nothing at all like the hundreds of photos we’ve seen of plane crashes.

Then there are a host of photos from the damage to the pentagon, most of which were taken by firefighters even before the roof had collapsed. Here again, no plane. No debris and countless photos diagraming the size of the opening leaving no room for wings to have entered the building.

So I guess my question is, what are we most afraid of? Another attack on our soil, or that there was a mass execution of thousands of Americans followed by the mass deception of millions?  I’m asking this question not because I am a conspiracy theorist. I’m not. I don’t believe in theories. I believe in facts and frankly everything that I have seen and read and heard from interviews of countless eye witnesses, many of whom were on the scene firefighters, do not match the story we are all expected to live with, tell and re-tell to our grandchildren.

I would like to know what really happened, who is responsible despite my fear of the truth. Even if the truth is even more horrible than the one we have. I for one, suspect that it is.

watson1

 

Refugee

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