All The World An Icon, Henry Corbin by Tom Cheetham

Speech is not of the tongue, but of the heart. The tongue is merely the instrument with which one speaks. He who is dumb is dumb in his heart, not in his tongue … As you speak, so is your heart. –Paracelsus

I competed this wonderful read “All The World is an Icon,”about Henry Corbin by “Tom Cheetham.”He writes about the the tendency towards separation of philosophy and revelation that began around the time of the Enlightenment and that it set the stage for a very common tendency these days in terms of how we use language. The norm is to rationalize or analyze our experience often involving a focus and language that is disconnected from the direct experience and more about conceptual and cognitive ways isof perception, learned and conditioned in us. In general there seems to be reduced value in that direct experience or deeper revelation. In this process we create a perception of reality that is very dependent on these perceptions and that is quite separated from the experience.

Unspeakable: Chris Hedges. With David Talbot

I have not read a book that has engaged me so fully in a long time. Chris Hedges cares about the less fortunate and he has actively pursued a more egalitarian society wherever he has reported from. He has worked for some mighty institutions and has been committed to what is authentic of himself and of his employers and his government. He has helped to illuminate how our institutions, politicians, reporters, religions and civilians have gone astray.

From the book. “It takes a “sublime madness of the soul” to fight against the “malignant powers of the world.”

Chris Hedges is an intellectual bomb thrower. The kinds of insights he provides into the troubled state of our democracy cannot be found anywhere else. Like many of our most important thinkers, he has been relegated to the margins because of ideas deemed too radicalor truefor public consumption.

Hedges here speaks up about the most pressing issues currently facing our nation. If we are to combat the intellectual and moral decay that have come to grip American life, we must listen to Chris Hedges and the urgent message he brings in this book.

Voltaire’s Bastards by John Ralston Saul

Im not sure what he is trying to say here. I include this so that I can occasionally revisit it to see if I am able to intuitively realize something from it.

“Now the death of God combined with the perfection of the image has brought us to a whole new state of expectation. We are the image. We are the viewer and the viewed. There is no other distracting presence. And that image has all the Godly powers. It kills at will. Kills effortlessly. Kills beautifully. It dispenses morality. Judges endlessly. The electronic image is man as God and the ritual involved leads us not to a mysterious Holy Trinity but back to ourselves. In the absence of a clear understanding that we are now the only source, these images cannot help but return to the expression of magic and fear proper to idolatrous societies. This in turn facilitates the use of the electronic image as propaganda by whoever can control some part of it. —JOHN RALSTON SAUL, Voltaire’s Bastards1

Prometheus Rising by Robert Anton Wilson

The Cynics, satirists and “mystics” (circuit V-VIII types) have told us over and over that “reason is a whore,” i.e., that the semantic circuit is notoriously vulnerable to manipulation by the older, more primitive circuits. However much the Rationalist may resent this, it is always true in the short run —that is, to use one of the Rationalist’s favorite words, it is always pragmatically true. Whoever can scare people enough (produce bio-survival anxiety) can sell them quickly on any verbal map that seems to give them relief, i.e., cure the anxiety. By frightening people with Hell and then offering them Salvation, the most ignorant or crooked individuals can “sell” a whole system of thought that cannot bear two minutes of rational analysis. And any domesticated primate alpha male, however cruel or crooked, can rally the primate tribe behind him by howling that a rival alpha male is about to lead his gang in an attack on this habitat. These two mammalian reflexes are known, respectively, as Religion and Patriotism. They work for domesticated primates, as for the wild primates, because they are Evolutionary Relative Successes. Robert Anton Wilson from Prometheus Rising

It is my sense that many global politicians today combine religion with their nationalistic sentiments to promote a regressive world view. It seems to be a step backwards to times when world war was fuelled by this kind of thinking and related efforts at boundary making. Ultimately as a conscious species we are coming to realize however slowly that separating humans into categories of race and/or any other such category is in the end an arbitrary endeavour. Never the less there exists a global reaction from those who experience a sense of vulnerability in this opening to deeper truths and deviant individuals opportunistically address these emotions in impractical and regressive ways that do nothing but encourage greater fear, illusion and reactivity. Gord

How to Change Your Mind: The New Science of Psychedelics by Michael Pollan

There is so much authority that comes out of the existing primary mystical experience that it can be threatening to existing hierarchal structures. – Rolland Griffiths this book can be an opening. Iris read it and said that it has had more of an impact than any other book that she is read in a long time. A really excellent read. For someone who experimented with psychedelics in my teens I was too young to realize and take advantage of the benefits. This book explores and reflects better than any that I have read about the consciousness raising possibilities of psychedelics. While they don’t represent a magic fix they can be part of a door opening and new and more comprehensive and holistic perceiving, envisioning and creativity. Pollan explores this with great expertise. At this late age of Sixty five I have the urge to indulge in some shrooms. Its never too late.