Sunday, July 31, 2011

conflict resolution

Conflict resolution is a wide range of methods of addressing sources of conflict - whether at the inter-personal level or between states - and of finding means of resolving a given conflict or of continuing it in less destructive forms than, say, armed conflict. Processes of conflict resolution generally include negotiation, mediation, diplomacy and creative peacebuilding. The term "conflict resolution" is sometimes used interchangeably with the terms dispute resolution or alternative dispute resolution. The processes of arbitration, litigation, and formal complaint processes through an ombudsman, are part of dispute resolution, and therefore they are also part of "conflict resolution." The concept of conflict resolution can also encompass the use of non-violent methods such as civil resistance (also often called nonviolent resistance) by a party to a conflict as a means of pursuing its goals, on the grounds that such means are more likely than armed struggle to lead to effective resolution of the conflict.

Five basic ways of addressing conflict were identified by Thomas and Kilmann in 1976:

Accommodation – surrender one's own needs and wishes to accommodate the other party.

Avoidance – avoid or postpone conflict by ignoring it, changing the subject, etc. Avoidance can be useful as a temporary measure to buy time or as an expedient means of dealing with very minor, non-recurring conflicts. In more severe cases, conflict avoidance can involve severing a relationship or leaving a group.

Collaboration – work together to find a mutually beneficial solution. While the Thomas-Kilmann grid views collaboration as the only win-win solution to conflict, collaboration can also be time-intensive and inappropriate when there is not enough trust, respect or communication among participants for collaboration to occur.

Compromise – bring the problem into the open and have the third person present. The aim of conflict resolution is to reach agreement and most often this will mean compromise.

Competition – assert one's viewpoint at the potential expense of another. It can be useful when achieving one's objectives outweighs one's concern for the relationship.

The Thomas Kilmann Instrument can be used to assess one's dominant style for addressing conflict. (read more)

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Waste of Human Potential

Every day, within the human world, there is the regrettable and apparently inexorable waste of human potential. Every day, countless numbers of individuals die from the starvation not because there is a scarcity of food, but because they do not have access to the abundance that does exist. Everyday large numbers of humans die from diseases and conditions that are preventable, treatable and, in some cases, curable, only because they lack the resources to gain access to the wondrous medical advances that exist in the larger world. Every day, tens of millions of children are denied access to meaningful educational resources; the net effect of this reality is that these children will never realize the wondrous gifts that they possess. Instead, they will be relegated to a future in which their primary behavior will be directed towards survival in a world that apparently rejects their possible contributions to the larger society. Every day, millions upon millions of human beings are without a place of shelter to which they can retreat from the relentless onslaught of their daily lives. Every day, the natural environment worsens as human societies continue to pursue reckless and short-sided policies that suggest a grim future for the species.
Contemporary humans are living a tragedy that is wholly preventable. There is no legitimate reason why any individual cannot have access to all the necessities required to sustain them. There is no reasonable explanation for the barbaric conditions in which so many live. There is no rational discourse that can abide the miserable fate of so many of the human kind other than the belief that only a few of us are deserving and the rest are the castoffs in the pursuit of wealth and power.
The pathetic aspect of the human condition is that we can be the architects of a very different world – a world that can not only sustain human life, but also enrich the lives of all of us, everywhere.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wilhelm Reich

Wilhelm Reich (March 24, 1897 – November 3, 1957) was an Austrian-American psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, known as one of the most radical figures in the history of psychiatry. He was the author of several notable books, including The Mass Psychology of Fascism and Character Analysis, both published in 1933.

Reich worked with Sigmund Freud in the 1920s and was a respected analyst for much of his life, focusing on character structure rather than on individual neurotic symptoms. He tried to reconcile Marxism and psychoanalysis, arguing that neurosis is rooted in the physical, sexual, economic, and social conditions of the patient, and promoted adolescent sexuality, the availability of contraceptives, abortion, and divorce, and the importance for women of economic independence. His work influenced a generation of intellectuals, including Saul Bellow, William S. Burroughs, Paul Edwards, Norman Mailer, A. S. Neill, and Robert Anton Wilson, and shaped innovations such as Fritz Perls's Gestalt therapy, Alexander Lowen's bioenergetic analysis, and Arthur Janov's primal therapy.

Later in life he became a controversial figure who was both adored and condemned. He began to violate some of the key taboos of psychoanalysis, using touch during sessions, and treating patients in their underwear to improve their "orgastic potency." He said he had discovered a primordial cosmic energy, which he said others called God and that he called "orgone". He built orgone energy accumulators that his patients sat inside to harness the reputed health benefits, leading to newspaper stories about sex boxes that cured cancer.

Reich was living in Germany when Adolf Hitler came to power in January 1933. On March 2 that year the Nazi newspaper Völkischer Beobachter published an attack on one of Reich's pamphlets, The Sexual Struggle of Youth. He left immediately for Vienna, then Scandinavia, moving to the United States in 1939. In 1947, following a series of articles about orgone in The New Republic and Harper's, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) obtained an injunction against the interstate sale of orgone accumulators. Charged with contempt for violating it, Reich conducted his own defense, which involved sending the judge all his books to read and arguing that a court was no place to decide matters of science. He was sentenced to two years in prison, and in August 1956 several tons of his publications were burned by the FDA - a notable example of censorship in U.S. history. He died in jail of heart failure just over a year later, days before he was due to apply for parole.

Trevor James Constable

Monday, July 25, 2011

On the Fragility of Human Consciousness

Human consciousness is such a fragile and unfinished aspect of human life – it can so easily run out of control, directed by unruly and irrational emotions. In my own particular instance, it has taken a good portion of my lifetime to recognize this significant piece of reality regarding the human condition. I suspect that it will take the remainder of my existence to learn how to more completely utilize my full potential for reasoned judgment based upon a true love and compassion for all living things that embrace this most wondrous planet.
Within the arena of politics and social and foreign policies, it is far too easy to adorn oneself with the mantle of righteousness and jump to often erroneous conclusions concerning the moral and ethical character of the political opposition. At the core of the most strident and powerful emotions, the ego is a very important player. In my estimation, it is essential to recognize the significance of those inner forces shaped by personality, experience and genetic predisposition that often shape an individual’s worldview, judgment and ultimate behavior.
An important first step in controlling volatile emotions is to understand their origins – in other words, it is a matter of the first priority to “know thyself.” Whenever aggression becomes a tool for social action, the possibility of implementing meaningful change diminishes; furthermore, this approach often proves counterproductive.
Whether or not the human species has the wherewithal to thoroughly recognize its own imperfections, actively work toward overcoming them and effectively move towards a truly just and peaceful world is an open question.



I must not fear.

Fear is the mind-killer.

Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.

I will face my fear.

I will permit it to pass over me and through me.

And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.

Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.

Only I will remain.

Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear.


Friday, July 22, 2011

Dalai Lama - Kalachakra Preliminary Teachings

Dalai Lama audio and video | The Office of His Holiness The Dalai Lama: "Kalachakra Preliminary Teachings"

Day one of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's three day teaching on Gyalsey Thokme Sangpo's "37 Practices of A Boddhisattva (laklen sodunma)" and Kamalashila's "Stages of Meditation - Middle Volume (gomrim barpa)" given on July 9-11, 2011, that were preliminary teachings to the Kalachakra Empowerment. (



Kalachakra (Sanskrit: कालचक्र; IAST: Kālacakra) is a Sanskrit term used in Tantric Buddhism that literally means "time-wheel" or "time-cycles." The spelling Kalacakra is also correct.

Kalachakra refers both to a Tantric deity (Tib. yidam) of Vajrayana Buddhism and to the philosophies and meditation practices contained within the Kalachakra Tantra and its many commentaries. The Kalachakra Tantra is more properly called the Kalachakra Laghutantra, and is said to be an abridged form of an original text, the Kalachakra Mulatantra which is no longer extant. Some Buddhist masters assert that Kalachakra is the most advanced form of Vajrayana practice; it certainly is one of the most complex systems within tantric Buddhism.

The Kalachakra tradition revolves around the concept of time (kāla) and cycles (chakra): from the cycles of the planets, to the cycles of human breathing, it teaches the practice of working with the most subtle energies within one's body on the path to enlightenment.

The Kalachakra deity represents a Buddha and thus omniscience. Since Kalachakra is time and everything is under the influence of time, Kalachakra knows all. Whereas Kalachakri or Kalichakra, his spiritual consort and complement, is aware of everything that is timeless, untimebound or out of the realm of time. In Yab-yum, they are temporality and atemporality conjoined. Similarly, the wheel is without beginning or end.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

God's Equation

In mathematics, the Fibonacci numbers are the numbers in the following integer sequence:

0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144...

By definition, the first two Fibonacci numbers are 0 and 1, and each subsequent number is the sum of the previous two.

In mathematical terms, the sequence Fn of Fibonacci numbers is defined by the recurrence relation with seed values.

The Fibonacci sequence is named after Leonardo of Pisa, who was known as Fibonacci. Fibonacci's 1202 book Liber Abaci introduced the sequence to Western European mathematics, although the sequence had been described earlier in Indian mathematics. (By modern convention, the sequence begins with F0 = 0. The Liber Abaci began the sequence with F1 = 1, omitting the initial 0, and the sequence is still written this way by some.)

Fibonacci numbers are closely related to Lucas numbers in that they are a complementary pair of Lucas sequences. They are intimately connected with the golden ratio, for example the closest rational approximations to the ratio are 2/1, 3/2, 5/3, 8/5, ... . Applications include computer algorithms such as the Fibonacci search technique and the Fibonacci heap data structure, and graphs called Fibonacci cubes used for interconnecting parallel and distributed systems. They also appear in biological settings, such as branching in trees, arrangement of leaves on a stem, the fruit spouts of a pineapple, the flowering of artichoke, an uncurling fern and the arrangement of a pine cone. (read more)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Stoning of Du'a Khalil Aswad

Du’a Khalil Aswad (دعاء خليل أسود)(c. 1989 – c. April 7, 2007) was a 17-year-old Iraqi Kurd of the Yazidi faith who was stoned to death in an honor killing. It is believed that she was killed around April 7, 2007, but the incident did not come to light until video of the stoning, apparently recorded on a mobile phone, appeared on the Internet. The rumor that the stoning was connected to her alleged conversion to Islam prompted heavy reprisals against Yazidis by Sunni extremists, including the 2007 Mosul massacre.

Aswad was taken to the town square and reports at the time alleged that she was stripped of her clothing down to her undergarments to symbolize that she had dishonored her family and religion. During the stoning, which lasted approximately thirty minutes, Aswad can be seen in the video attempting to sit up and calling for help as the crowd taunts her and repeatedly throws a large chunk of rock or concrete on her head. After her death in the town square, Aswad's body was tied behind a car and dragged through the streets. She was buried with the remains of a dog, allegedly to demonstrate that she was worthless. Eventually, her body was "exhumed and sent to the Medico-Legal Institute in Mosul so that tests could be performed to see whether she had died a virgin, results had then come back that confirm that she was in fact still a virgin." (read more)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Collateral Damage

Collateral damage,
what exactly is it?

Is it a rock band,
perhaps heavy metal,
some obscure
auto insurance term
itemizing what’s not covered
in case of an accident
written in miniscule print,
a mistake a surgeon might make
in the midst of a delicate operation,
those individuals
indirectly injured from the
side effects of a nasty divorce,
debris left over from an
overzealous football game?

Collateral damage,
what exactly is it?

The stupefying carnage,
the chaos and mayhem that
accompanies ferocious and brutal violence,
the torrential flow of blood spewing from
shattered and broken bodies
separated from the yolk of the living,
the pungent odor released from
myriad corpses strewn upon fields of
overwhelming death,
the instantaneous incineration of entire families,
the horrific and bountiful products of murder
cannot be expunged by the simple application of
innocuous words in a vain attempt to
circumvent the reality of
such depravity.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

storms a comin'

PASADENA, Calif. -- Scientists analyzing data from NASA's Cassini spacecraft now have the first-ever, up-close details of a Saturn storm that is eight times the surface area of Earth.

On Dec. 5, 2010, Cassini first detected the storm that has been raging ever since. It appears approximately 35 degrees north latitude of Saturn. Pictures from Cassini's imaging cameras show the storm wrapping around the entire planet covering approximately 2 billion square miles (4 billion square kilometers).

The storm is about 500 times larger than the biggest storm previously seen by Cassini during several months from 2009 to 2010. Scientists studied the sounds of the new storm's lightning strikes and analyzed images taken between December 2010 and February 2011. Data from Cassini's radio and plasma wave science instrument showed the lightning flash rate as much as 10 times more frequent than during other storms monitored since Cassini's arrival to Saturn in 2004. The data appear in a paper published this week in the journal Nature. (read more)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Friday, July 8, 2011

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Monday, July 4, 2011

Dr. Johnson

"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel."

Samuel Johnson (18 September 1709 [O.S. 7 September] – 13 December 1784), often referred to as Dr Johnson, was an English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer. Johnson was a devout Anglican and committed Tory, and has been described as "arguably the most distinguished man of letters in English history". He is also the subject of "the most famous single work of biographical art in the whole of literature": James Boswell's Life of Samuel Johnson.

In 1774 he printed The Patriot, a critique of what he viewed as false patriotism. On the evening of 7 April 1775, he made the famous statement, "Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel." This line was not, as widely believed, about patriotism in general, but the false use of the term "patriotism" by John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute (the patriot-minister) and his supporters; Johnson opposed "self-professed Patriots" in general, but valued what he considered "true" self-professed patriotism. (read more)

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Lies, Damn Lies, and Safe Nuclear Power

Rankin & Dub Ainu Band "You can't see it, and you can't smell it either "

english subtitles

Radiation is scary, radiation is dangerous, you can't see or smell it, and you can't run from it

Independent Media Center | | ((( i ))): "Lies, Damn Lies, and Safe Nuclear Power - by Stephen Lendman

In any form, nuclear power is inherently unsafe. For decades, nuclear expert Helen Caldicott warned it must be abandoned, saying:

'As a physician, I contend that nuclear technology threatens life on our planet with extinction. If present trends continue, the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink will soon be contaminated with enough radioactive pollutants to pose a potential health hazard far greater than any plague humanity has ever experienced.'

Anti-nuclear activist/expert Professor Karl Grossman agrees, calling 'Atomic Energy: Unsafe in the Real World' in his June 29 article, saying:

'Nuclear power requires perfection and no acts of God' to avoid accidents that may become catastrophes. Humans and technology aren't perfect. Natural and other type disasters happen. '(W)e can't eliminate them. But we can - and must eliminate atomic energy' or it will eliminate us.

On March 18, Bloomberg said Japan's Fukushima disaster 'follows decades of falsified safety reports, fatal accidents and underestimated earthquake risks in Japan's atomic power industry.'

The same is true in America and elsewhere - governments, regulators, and power companies suppressing vital truths, instead of shutting down inherently unsafe plants, making all of them ticking bombs..."

whats up: You can't see it, and you can't smell it either | Nuclear Nightmare Unfolding: "Everyone knows about Chernobyl, Three Mile Island and, now, Fukushima. But what about Semipalatinsk, Palomares and Kyshtym? The world is full of nuclear disaster zones -- showing just how dangerous the technology really is."

working class hero

Sex Object

A fertility deity is a god or goddess in mythology associated with fertility, pregnancy, and birth. In some cases these deities are directly associated with sex, and in others they simply embody related attributes. (fertility deities)

Friday, July 1, 2011


Love Musings

Frequently, I meet people in relationships - serious, long term, committed relationships - who are clearly not well-matched. They don't see eye-to-eye, rarely agree about anything important, and, frankly, just don't seem to understand or like each other very well at all. And I ask myself why. And often times I ask them why.

"Because I love him."

Okay, fair enough. But why?

"We've been through a lot together."
"You can't help who you love."
"I can't imagine my life without her."
"He loves me more than anyone ever has."

And that all sounds very sweet, but where is the passion? Where are the soul-inspiring epic declarations of unity?

And what the hell does "You can't help who you love" even mean?!

Yes you can.

Here's how I think this situation comes about:

Boy meets Girl. Boy and Girl are lustily drawn together and become infatuated with one another. Often, Boy and Girl confuse infatuation with love and thus make bold declarations. After a time (3 months, one year), the infatuation receeds, leaving a comittment behind. Boy and Girl begin feeling restless and uneasy, start to bicker and have a few big fights. Now this is the time, in my humble opinion, at which a relationship should probably end. But it doesn't. Boy and Girl remember their earlier declarations of love and comittment and also remember past failed relationships as well as how lonely they were before they began dating. So they decide to "work through it."


"He loves me."
"I owe it to her."
"Relationships aren't easy."

So they buck up and, as is often stated, "make it work." Fast forward to two, three, four or more years down the road and we arrive at the beginning of the story. They've made it through so much: these fights, constant disagreements, clashing of personalities . . . forgiven one another and are still persisting in "making it work."

Oh, and along the way, they have grown to love each other.

This is not to say they are in love with each other. On the contrary; they have made up a cozy little room in their hearts for the other and have grown quite used to having it occupied. They love the idea of having a partner, a date for every holiday gathering, movie, and party. They live together and don't like to sleep alone. They are now financially dependant on the partnership. They have forgotten how to be alone.

But what about those huge character differences?

"He is trying."
"She has changed a lot since 'then.'"
"Nobody is perfect."

Sometimes Boy or Girl even blames it on him or her self, saying that he/she nags too much, expects too much, is too hard on the other, or deserves it due to something he/she has done in the past.

What about the fact that you feel like he/she just doesn't understand you? I ask.


What about your lack of passion? Don't you miss that excited, butterflies-in-your-stomach feeling?

"Everybody knows that doesn't last forever."

Really? Everybody knows that?

I disagree.

Occasionally, I do meet a couple who are clearly in love. They've been together for years, sometimes even decades. He/she steals kisses from and glances at the other, they can't help but sit close to each other or touch one another as they walk down the street. Laughter is abundant, and often times they needn't say anything at all because they are so in tune with the twinkle of their lovers' eyes that all is understood.

Do you ever fight? I ask.

"No. Not really. I mean, we disagree sometimes of course, but we always work it out."


"We talk about it. We communicate."

So you clearly understand one another.

"We are best friends." And they are typically answering me in unison!

Do you still get those butterflies when you see him?

"Of course!" and they share a kiss.

Was it love at first sight?

"For him it was," she might joke.

Or, "We pretty much knew right from the start."

So what is the difference? Why do so many people get it so wrong and so few get it so right?

My hypothesis is fear. We are afraid to admit we've made the wrong choice. We are afraid to leave someone we like well enough, someone whom we have grown to love - have taught ourselves to love - in search of the unknown "perfect" ONE.

So we settle. And because everyone else around us is also settling, we come to believe that's how it should be. That there is something wrong with us if we don't.

Sometimes either Boy or Girl decides to take a stand. Sometimes Boy or Girl decides to leave. But the other one convinces him/her to stay.

"Don't run away."
"We've come this far. We owe it to each other to try."
"I can change."

Love means never having to say "I will change." Love is unconditional. Love happens like lightning when two people are made perfectly for each other. They aren't perfect. No one is. But they are perfectly matched.

So what do we do?

I advocate honesty. Be honest with yourself. Demand butterflies. Seek love at first sight. Know that people don't change who they are. If something about the person you're seeing doesn't connect with you, do not wait it out.

Don't allow yourself to replace being in love with growing to love; if you do, you will find one day that you have settled, and, by that time, it will be so difficult to leave and start over that you will probably just stick it out.

And that is a tragedy.

Not only is it a tragedy for you, but it is also a tragedy for the soul mate for whom you are no longer available! And the example you are setting for your kids, your friends, and the world is that "good enough" is okay.

Take a stand against tragedy.

Even if it means getting back in "The Game." Even if it means hurting his or her feelings. Even if it means you will be broke, sleeping alone, homeless, lonely, a single mom or dad - whatever.

Because here's the big secret:

When you begin a path of truth, the entire universe conspires in your favor. Things start going right.

Love is just around the corner.


Climate Change Mirrors an Earlier Era in Planetary History

Doctor Lee R. Kump, a professor of geosciences at Pennsylvania State University, has illustrated some disturbing parallels between the changes in global climate of today with a well-studied era in the planet’s past. At that time, about fifty-six million years ago, temperatures worldwide rose some five degrees Celsius in the course of a few thousand years. This period is referred to as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM). At that time in the planet’s history the huge land mass known as Pangaea was in the final phase of breaking up into the current day continents. This process led to the formation of the north-eastern Atlantic Ocean. As a result, enormous volumes of molten rock were released producing intense heat. Carbon-enriched sediments that were close to the surface were subsequently burned releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, especially carbon dioxide and methane. In addition, it is postulated that the concomitant warming of the ocean seabed led to the release of vast quantities of frozen methane.
The cumulative effects of these changes were the following:
• Marked increase in global temperatures (as noted above)
• Climate zones shifted towards the poles both on land and in the ocean propelling the migration of living things to accommodate this change
• Within the ocean depths, acidity increased and the supply of oxygen diminished killing of many organisms there.
These changes are striking similar to what is being reported currently. In regard to the status of the oceans, an international workshop, sponsored by the International Programme on the State of the Ocean (IPSO), has recently met in Oxford, UK. Their goal was to study the impact of human-made stressors including warming, acidification and overfishing on the overall health of the ocean. The conclusions this international group of experts reached are quite alarming. In essence, they have concluded that the stresses imposed on the world’s oceans as a direct result of human activity may lead to “globally significant marine extinction.”
In addition, Doctor Kump has determined from his studies that, in fact, “global temperature today is rising much more quickly than it did during PETM.” If the current rate of increase in atmospheric greenhouse gases continues unabated, it is estimated that global temperature will increase by eight degrees Celsius by the year 2400. This kind of increase would profoundly and dramatically change the nature of life on the planet and drastically impact the possibility of continued human survival. This kind of change can only be averted by a global commitment to dramatic changes in human behavior and expectations. It should also be noted that it took some 200,000 years for the planet to cool down during PETM.

Atomic Cafe