It was a wild weekend. OU barely won vs. Army. The cadets from West Point proved that there’s something powerful to be found in focused training that abstains from serial=fornicating and decadence; qualities that typically characterize the college experience. I parked cars in my grandma’s yard and tried to teach as much as I could about the potential that we all possess to capture CO2 while minimizing Oil usage, and I think some of it resonated. I also gave some Tipi tours and tried to instill in the passers-by how important it is to engage in friendly/dynamic ways w/ the other people w/ whom we live. It’s not easy to break-down people’s ‘walls’, but we have to try. I gave some lessons in posture to some kids and demonstrated the importance of the Salute (as demonstrated by our servicemen & women). They need someone other than their teachers & parents to validate the lessons they learn. We need them to be ready.
We also need for our school systems to make them ready; and although we get some of our students ready, we could get a lot more prepared for the future challenges.
What are those challenges? Energy exploitation, social isolation, family dysfunction, drug/alcohol abuse, violence, hyper-sexualization, absence of the sacred & transcendent, and so on; it all contributes to a diversion from the seriousness of the Life and the world into which they’re preparing to step.
I’m of the opinion that we need to reform our approach to Education; and the way in which we use energy most specifically. My experiences teaching in China revealed to me, just how much we’ve fallen behind. It happened w/out our awareness of it, but now that there are people in our communities who have seen the ‘other side’, we need to integrate their knowledge into our consciousness, lest we continue to handicap ourselves and limit our young people’s ability to operate w/ self-sufficient independence in the World; that we know is going to be deprived of energy & capital. What effect will that have on our domestic politics? What effect will that have on geo-economic relationships? None of us have crystal balls, but we can all agree that the less independent we are, be it cognitively or physiologically, it will have a negative impact. We’re exhausting our limited fuel supplies by making superficially pleasant schools (grass mowing, shrub pruning, edging, etc.); we’re wasting energy & electricity heating & cooling our schools b/c too many kids don’t dress appropriately; we’re not teaching self-defense; we’re not teaching them the integral role that posture & breathing have in the perfection of the Self; and 2/3 of Oklahoma school districts can’t even offer Chemistry, Physics, Calculus, or Astronomy !!! What chance do they have of synthesizing an astonishing experience of their place in the Universe and the majesty that resides inside each human mind? If they don’t have the fundamentals, be it in the body or the mind, then it’s inevitable that they’re going to fall into the traps of fundamentalist religion. It’s inevitable that they’re going to become enamored by gun-culture. It’s inevitable that they’re going to become drug abusers. It’s inevitable that they’re going to have children out of wedlock. It’s inevitable that they’ll get caught-up in casino culture and all of its corrosive exhilaration. All of these ‘traps’ have long-run consequences. It could be argued that the problems we’re confronting now are the result of previous generations failure to honestly look at, and prepare for the challenges they saw coming? 45 years ago there was an Oil embargo from OPEC. Who remembers that? What have we done? We’ve splurged on Suburbia & Spectacle. How? By using & exploiting the cheap oil & coal. It’s been so abundant and w/in our economic system that’s focused more on short-term profitability than long-term sustainability, we incentivize their exploitation b/c it meets the consuming public’s desire for expedience. It’s pathetically weak, insipid & cowardly. Why is it so cowardly? B/c we know that there’s a finite quantity of these resources and yet we still waste them when we don’t need to. For example, if I’m cold, should I put on a coat, or should I turn up the natural gas driven heater? Most people wouldn’t think twice about it and they’d choose to turn up the heater; but people still try to defend our, so called, ‘free market’ system as it is b/c the cost of using the energy sources will eventually price-in restraint and responsible budgeting. Well how is that working? We have more debt than ever before. Millions of Americans can’t pay for an unexpected $1,000 expense. Global debt is greater than it’s ever been? Evidently, we as a species, haven’t learned how to restrain our purchasing power or our borrowing power. Who benefits from that? Everyone does a little bit, but inequality has never been greater !! Never before have so many people achieved the status of ‘ultra-rich’; but ironically, it’s never been better for the poorest amongst us. Dollar Tree is proof. We don’t ‘want’ for anything. Tragedy befalls many of us. I’ve had my own experiences w/ tragedy and if it weren’t for Dr. Shon Cook and his team I wouldn’t be here. U could say that I’ve been ‘born again’. U could also say that Permaculture is the way to bring the extreme right ‘white-nationalists’ together w/ the extreme left ‘tree-huggers’. U could also say that I’ve discovered the centrality of posture to health & cosmic connection. U could also say that I’ve transcended race; as evidenced by the use of style & charisma to go into the heart of China & the Bahamas. U could also say that I’ve endured poverty & affluence. U could also say that I’ve transcended religion by synthesizing an omni-theological approach to connecting; w/in one’s self & w/ others thru the multiplicity of religious rites-be they Christian, Islamic, Buddhist, Hindu, 1st Nations animism, secular humanism, etc. U could also say that I’ve transcended politics by exploring and witnessing the power of atheistic capital/socialism. U could also say that I’ve transcended all of that by carrying a guitar on my back and by feeling ashamed of how I looked for so ‘manymany’ years. U could say that I’ve been baring the burdens of this culture my entire life and U wouldn’t be too wrong. U could also say that, “He may not look like it, but Evan A. Dunn is as close to the ‘Truth’ as I’ve ever seen, heard, or read; and I feel so fortunate to have had him in my life that I’m going to ‘go to bat’ for him; I’m going to try to make him famous; I’m going to point at him and tell my children, my Ma and my Pa, that I think he’s the One for whom we’ve all been waiting.” I think U should. Too many of us are too meek & humble. Too many of us do the work and don’t demand acknowledgement or remuneration. Too many of us are afraid to engage. Too many of us are afraid to die, and consequently choose not to completely live. Too many us are too willing to sacrifice the future of our grandchildren’s grandchildren’s grandchildren so we can be a little bit cozier for a little bit longer.
It doesn’t have to be that way though. We can all take the world into which we were born and change thru our action. We can change it thru the summoning of our will. We can generate solidarity by confronting one another for a miniscule decadent indulgences. We can control the markets more than they control us. But if we don’t start w/ the fundamentals of breathing, sitting, listening, sleeping, eating, writing, reading, calculating, and exploring the collective genius of our world then it’ll never happen. If we don’t we’ll always have exorbitant health care costs. We’ll always have a tax code that’s too complex. We’ll always have too many people who suffer from compulsive addictions. We’ll always have too many conflicts between nations. We’ll always have too much family dysfunction. We’ll always have too many men & women locked-up. We’ll always have too many people who have never been fortunate enough to discover the transcendent power that is awaiting each and every one of us, deep down in our Humanity, to live more ‘perfectly’. I believe that’s what our Founding Fathers & our Founding Mothers intended. We’re meant to discover the completeness of the Universe and be humbled it’s infinite mystery.
I don’t much more to say, but please let me sign-off w/ these last thoughts; Oscar Wilde, a 19th century Irish playwright, once said that “A map of the world that doesn’t have Utopia on it, isn’t worth looking at”; and I disagree b/c I think utopias only exist as abstractions in our minds, but the idea of a Utopia is the asymptotic infinity for which we all should strive. The problems arise when we don’t try to reach-out and transcend our divisions. Each generation must be taught and raised anew in the art of experience and the way by which we can navigate this mass of electrons and atoms that constitute our bodies & the cosmos from which we arise, as efficiently and as peacefully and preemptively and as prepatorily, and gracefully, and as courageously as any human being who’s ever lived. That potential is w/in, and around us, and it’s waiting for us to fuse ourselves to its potential. We can if we try, but first we have to breathe.