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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Nobel Prize for Literature, received by Albert Camus in 1957

Let this acceptance speech serve as a metaphor_ try not to interpret it too literally, as one may not be an artist, or may be an artist of another medium_ these words on some scale may serve:
(First in English Translation)
"In receiving the distinction with which your free Academy has so generously honoured me, my gratitude has been profound, particularly when I consider the extent to which this recompense has surpassed my personal merits. Every man, and for stronger reasons, every artist, wants to be recognized. So do I. But I have not been able to learn of your decision without comparing its repercussions to what I really am. A man almost young, rich only in his doubts and with his work still in progress, accustomed to living in the solitude of work or in the retreats of friendship: how would he not feel a kind of panic at hearing the decree that transports him all of a sudden, alone and reduced to himself, to the centre of a glaring light? And with what feelings could he accept this honour at a time when other writers in Europe, among them the very greatest, are condemned to silence, and even at a time when the country of his birth is going through unending misery?

I felt that shock and inner turmoil. In order to regain peace I have had, in short, to come to terms with a too generous fortune. And since I cannot live up to it by merely resting on my achievement, I have found nothing to support me but what has supported me through all my life, even in the most contrary circumstances: the idea that I have of my art and of the role of the writer. Let me only tell you, in a spirit of gratitude and friendship, as simply as I can, what this idea is.

For myself, I cannot live without my art. But I have never placed it above everything. If, on the other hand, I need it, it is because it cannot be separated from my fellow men, and it allows me to live, such as I am, on one level with them. It is a means of stirring the greatest number of people by offering them a privileged picture of common joys and sufferings. It obliges the artist not to keep himself apart; it subjects him to the most humble and the most universal truth. And often he who has chosen the fate of the artist because he felt himself to be different soon realizes that he can maintain neither his art nor his difference unless he admits that he is like the others. The artist forges himself to the others, midway between the beauty he cannot do without and the community he cannot tear himself away from. That is why true artists scorn nothing: they are obliged to understand rather than to judge. And if they have to take sides in this world, they can perhaps side only with that society in which, according to Nietzsche's great words, not the judge but the creator will rule, whether he be a worker or an intellectual.

By the same token, the writer's role is not free from difficult duties. By definition he cannot put himself today in the service of those who make history; he is at the service of those who suffer it. Otherwise, he will be alone and deprived of his art. Not all the armies of tyranny with their millions of men will free him from his isolation, even and particularly if he falls into step with them. But the silence of an unknown prisoner, abandoned to humiliations at the other end of the world, is enough to draw the writer out of his exile, at least whenever, in the midst of the privileges of freedom, he manages not to forget that silence, and to transmit it in order to make it resound by means of his art.

None of us is great enough for such a task. But in all circumstances of life, in obscurity or temporary fame, cast in the irons of tyranny or for a time free to express himself, the writer can win the heart of a living community that will justify him, on the one condition that he will accept to the limit of his abilities the two tasks that constitute the greatness of his craft: the service of truth and the service of liberty. Because his task is to unite the greatest possible number of people, his art must not compromise with lies and servitude which, wherever they rule, breed solitude. Whatever our personal weaknesses may be, the nobility of our craft will always be rooted in two commitments, difficult to maintain: the refusal to lie about what one knows and the resistance to oppression.

For more than twenty years of an insane history, hopelessly lost like all the men of my generation in the convulsions of time, I have been supported by one thing: by the hidden feeling that to write today was an honour because this activity was a commitment - and a commitment not only to write. Specifically, in view of my powers and my state of being, it was a commitment to bear, together with all those who were living through the same history, the misery and the hope we shared. These men, who were born at the beginning of the First World War, who were twenty when Hitler came to power and the first revolutionary trials were beginning, who were then confronted as a completion of their education with the Spanish Civil War, the Second World War, the world of concentration camps, a Europe of torture and prisons - these men must today rear their sons and create their works in a world threatened by nuclear destruction. Nobody, I think, can ask them to be optimists. And I even think that we should understand - without ceasing to fight it - the error of those who in an excess of despair have asserted their right to dishonour and have rushed into the nihilism of the era. But the fact remains that most of us, in my country and in Europe, have refused this nihilism and have engaged upon a quest for legitimacy. They have had to forge for themselves an art of living in times of catastrophe in order to be born a second time and to fight openly against the instinct of death at work in our history.

Each generation doubtless feels called upon to reform the world. Mine knows that it will not reform it, but its task is perhaps even greater. It consists in preventing the world from destroying itself. Heir to a corrupt history, in which are mingled fallen revolutions, technology gone mad, dead gods, and worn-out ideologies, where mediocre powers can destroy all yet no longer know how to convince, where intelligence has debased itself to become the servant of hatred and oppression, this generation starting from its own negations has had to re-establish, both within and without, a little of that which constitutes the dignity of life and death. In a world threatened by disintegration, in which our grand inquisitors run the risk of establishing forever the kingdom of death, it knows that it should, in an insane race against the clock, restore among the nations a peace that is not servitude, reconcile anew labour and culture, and remake with all men the Ark of the Covenant. It is not certain that this generation will ever be able to accomplish this immense task, but already it is rising everywhere in the world to the double challenge of truth and liberty and, if necessary, knows how to die for it without hate. Wherever it is found, it deserves to be saluted and encouraged, particularly where it is sacrificing itself. In any event, certain of your complete approval, it is to this generation that I should like to pass on the honour that you have just given me.

At the same time, after having outlined the nobility of the writer's craft, I should have put him in his proper place. He has no other claims but those which he shares with his comrades in arms: vulnerable but obstinate, unjust but impassioned for justice, doing his work without shame or pride in view of everybody, not ceasing to be divided between sorrow and beauty, and devoted finally to drawing from his double existence the creations that he obstinately tries to erect in the destructive movement of history. Who after all this can expect from him complete solutions and high morals? Truth is mysterious, elusive, always to be conquered. Liberty is dangerous, as hard to live with as it is elating. We must march toward these two goals, painfully but resolutely, certain in advance of our failings on so long a road. What writer would from now on in good conscience dare set himself up as a preacher of virtue? For myself, I must state once more that I am not of this kind. I have never been able to renounce the light, the pleasure of being, and the freedom in which I grew up. But although this nostalgia explains many of my errors and my faults, it has doubtless helped me toward a better understanding of my craft. It is helping me still to support unquestioningly all those silent men who sustain the life made for them in the world only through memory of the return of brief and free happiness.

Thus reduced to what I really am, to my limits and debts as well as to my difficult creed, I feel freer, in concluding, to comment upon the extent and the generosity of the honour you have just bestowed upon me, freer also to tell you that I would receive it as an homage rendered to all those who, sharing in the same fight, have not received any privilege, but have on the contrary known misery and persecution. It remains for me to thank you from the bottom of my heart and to make before you publicly, as a personal sign of my gratitude, the same and ancient promise of faithfulness which every true artist repeats to himself in silence every day."

And as originally delivered in French:

"Sire, Madame, Altesses Royales, Mesdames, Messieurs,

En recevant la distinction dont votre libre Académie a bien voulu m'honorer, ma gratitude était d'autant plus profonde que je mesurais à quel point cette récompense dépassait mes mérites personnels. Tout homme et, à plus forte raison, tout artiste, désire être reconnu. Je le désire aussi. Mais il ne m'a pas été possible d'apprendre votre décision sans comparer son retentissement à ce que je suis réellement. Comment un homme presque jeune, riche de ses seuls doutes et d'une œuvre encore en chantier, habitué à vivre dans la solitude du travail ou dans les retraites de l'amitié, n'aurait-il pas appris avec une sorte de panique un arrêt qui le portait d'un coup, seul et réduit à lui-même, au centre d'une lumière crue ? De quel cœur aussi pouvait-il recevoir cet honneur à l'heure où, en Europe, d'autres écrivains, parmi les plus grands, sont réduits au silence, et dans le temps même où sa terre natale connaît un malheur incessant ?
J'ai connu ce désarroi et ce trouble intérieur. Pour retrouver la paix, il m'a fallu, en somme, me mettre en règle avec un sort trop généreux. Et, puisque je ne pouvais m'égaler à lui en m'appuyant sur mes seuls mérites, je n'ai rien trouvé d'autre pour m'aider que ce qui m'a soutenu tout au long de ma vie, et dans les circonstances les plus contraires : l'idée que je me fais de mon art et du rôle de l'écrivain. Permettez seulement que, dans un sentiment de reconnaissance et d'amitié, je vous dise, aussi simplement que je le pourrai, quelle est cette idée.
Je ne puis vivre personnellement sans mon art. Mais je n'ai jamais placé cet art au-dessus de tout. S'il m'est nécessaire au contraire, c'est qu'il ne se sépare de personne et me permet de vivre, tel que je suis, au niveau de tous. L'art n'est pas à mes yeux une réjouissance solitaire. Il est un moyen d'émouvoir le plus grand nombre d'hommes en leur offrant une image privilégiée des souffrances et des joies communes. Il oblige donc l'artiste à ne pas se séparer ; il le soumet à la vérité la plus humble et la plus universelle. Et celui qui, souvent, a choisi son destin d'artiste parce qu'il se sentait différent apprend bien vite qu'il ne nourrira son art, et sa différence, qu'en avouant sa ressemblance avec tous. L'artiste se forge dans cet aller retour perpétuel de lui aux autres, à mi-chemin de la beauté dont il ne peut se passer et de la communauté à laquelle il ne peut s'arracher. C'est pourquoi les vrais artistes ne méprisent rien ; ils s'obligent à comprendre au lieu de juger. Et s'ils ont un parti à prendre en ce monde ce ne peut être que celui d'une société où, selon le grand mot de Nietzsche, ne règnera plus le juge, mais le créateur, qu'il soit travailleur ou intellectuel.
Le rôle de l'écrivain, du même coup, ne se sépare pas de devoirs difficiles. Par définition, il ne peut se mettre aujourd'hui au service de ceux qui font l'histoire : il est au service de ceux qui la subissent. Ou sinon, le voici seul et privé de son art. Toutes les armées de la tyrannie avec leurs millions d'hommes ne l'enlèveront pas à la solitude, même et surtout s'il consent à prendre leur pas. Mais le silence d'un prisonnier inconnu, abandonné aux humiliations à l'autre bout du monde, suffit à retirer l'écrivain de l'exil chaque fois, du moins, qu'il parvient, au milieu des privilèges de la liberté, à ne pas oublier ce silence, et à le relayer pour le faire retentir par les moyens de l'art.
Aucun de nous n'est assez grand pour une pareille vocation. Mais dans toutes les circonstances de sa vie, obscur ou provisoirement célèbre, jeté dans les fers de la tyrannie ou libre pour un temps de s'exprimer, l'écrivain peut retrouver le sentiment d'une communauté vivante qui le justifiera, à la seule condition qu'il accepte, autant qu'il peut, les deux charges qui font la grandeur de son métier : le service de la vérité et celui de la liberté. Puisque sa vocation est de réunir le plus grand nombre d'hommes possible, elle ne peut s'accommoder du mensonge et de la servitude qui, là où ils règnent, font proliférer les solitudes. Quelles que soient nos infirmités personnelles, la noblesse de notre métier s'enracinera toujours dans deux engagements difficiles à maintenir : le refus de mentir sur ce que l'on sait et la résistance à l'oppression.
Pendant plus de vingt ans d'une histoire démentielle, perdu sans secours, comme tous les hommes de mon âge, dans les convulsions du temps, j'ai été soutenu ainsi : par le sentiment obscur qu'écrire était aujourd'hui un honneur, parce que cet acte obligeait, et obligeait à ne pas écrire seulement. Il m'obligeait particulièrement à porter, tel que j'étais et selon mes forces, avec tous ceux qui vivaient la même histoire, le malheur et l'espérance que nous partagions. Ces hommes, nés au début de la première guerre mondiale, qui ont eu vingt ans au moment où s'installaient à la fois le pouvoir hitlérien et les premiers procès révolutionnaires, qui furent confrontés ensuite, pour parfaire leur éducation, à la guerre d'Espagne, à la deuxième guerre mondiale, à l'univers concentrationnaire, à l'Europe de la torture et des prisons, doivent aujourd'hui élever leurs fils et leurs œuvres dans un monde menacé de destruction nucléaire. Personne, je suppose, ne peut leur demander d'être optimistes. Et je suis même d'avis que nous devons comprendre, sans cesser de lutter contre eux, l'erreur de ceux qui, par une surenchère de désespoir, ont revendiqué le droit au déshonneur, et se sont rués dans les nihilismes de l'époque. Mais il reste que la plupart d'entre nous, dans mon pays et en Europe, ont refusé ce nihilisme et se sont mis à la recherche d'une légitimité. Il leur a fallu se forger un art de vivre par temps de catastrophe, pour naître une seconde fois, et lutter ensuite, à visage découvert, contre l'instinct de mort à l'œuvre dans notre histoire.
Chaque génération, sans doute, se croit vouée à refaire le monde. La mienne sait pourtant qu'elle ne le refera pas. Mais sa tâche est peut-être plus grande. Elle consiste à empêcher que le monde se défasse. Héritière d'une histoire corrompue où se mêlent les révolutions déchues, les techniques devenues folles, les dieux morts et les idéologies exténuées, où de médiocres pouvoirs peuvent aujourd'hui tout détruire mais ne savent plus convaincre, où l'intelligence s'est abaissée jusqu'à se faire la servante de la haine et de l'oppression, cette génération a dû, en elle-même et autour d'elle, restaurer, à partir de ses seules négations, un peu de ce qui fait la dignité de vivre et de mourir. Devant un monde menacé de désintégration, où nos grands inquisiteurs risquent d'établir pour toujours les royaumes de la mort, elle sait qu'elle devrait, dans une sorte de course folle contre la montre, restaurer entre les nations une paix qui ne soit pas celle de la servitude, réconcilier à nouveau travail et culture, et refaire avec tous les hommes une arche d'alliance. Il n'est pas sûr qu'elle puisse jamais accomplir cette tâche immense, mais il est sûr que partout dans le monde, elle tient déjà son double pari de vérité et de liberté, et, à l'occasion, sait mourir sans haine pour lui. C'est elle qui mérite d'être saluée et encouragée partout où elle se trouve, et surtout là où elle se sacrifie. C'est sur elle, en tout cas, que, certain de votre accord profond, je voudrais reporter l'honneur que vous venez de me faire.
Du même coup, après avoir dit la noblesse du métier d'écrire, j'aurais remis l'écrivain à sa vraie place, n'ayant d'autres titres que ceux qu'il partage avec ses compagnons de lutte, vulnérable mais entêté, injuste et passionné de justice, construisant son œuvre sans honte ni orgueil à la vue de tous, sans cesse partagé entre la douleur et la beauté, et voué enfin à tirer de son être double les créations qu'il essaie obstinément d'édifier dans le mouvement destructeur de l'histoire. Qui, après cela, pourrait attendre de lui des solutions toutes faites et de belles morales ? La vérité est mystérieuse, fuyante, toujours à conquérir. La liberté est dangereuse, dure à vivre autant qu'exaltante. Nous devons marcher vers ces deux buts, péniblement, mais résolument, certains d'avance de nos défaillances sur un si long chemin. Quel écrivain, dès lors oserait, dans la bonne conscience, se faire prêcheur de vertu ? Quant à moi, il me faut dire une fois de plus que je ne suis rien de tout cela. Je n'ai jamais pu renoncer à la lumière, au bonheur d'être, à la vie libre où j'ai grandi. Mais bien que cette nostalgie explique beaucoup de mes erreurs et de mes fautes, elle m'a aidé sans doute à mieux comprendre mon métier, elle m'aide encore à me tenir, aveuglément, auprès de tous ces hommes silencieux qui ne supportent, dans le monde, la vie qui leur est faite que par le souvenir ou le retour de brefs et libres bonheurs.
Ramené ainsi à ce que je suis réellement, à mes limites, à mes dettes, comme à ma foi difficile, je me sens plus libre de vous montrer pour finir, l'étendue et la générosité de la distinction que vous venez de m'accorder, plus libre de vous dire aussi que je voudrais la recevoir comme un hommage rendu à tous ceux qui, partageant le même combat, n'en ont reçu aucun privilège, mais ont connu au contraire malheur et persécution. Il me restera alors à vous en remercier, du fond du cœur, et à vous faire publiquement, en témoignage personnel de gratitude, la même et ancienne promesse de fidélité que chaque artiste vrai, chaque jour, se fait à lui-même, dans le silence."
From Les Prix Nobel en 1957, Editor Göran Liljestrand, [Nobel Foundation], Stockholm, 1958

 "Albert Camus - Banquet Speech". 4 Dec 2012

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Let 'em know you're in!

November 6, 2012_ not very far away! What are you doing between now and then to take care of democracy no matter how bogged down perceptions may be in reactionary judgmentalism?!! 

Isn't it a grand thing to have freedom to criticize everything to the point of unconsciousness & limited exposure?

Not to insult people_ rather to hold up a mirror. Find your courage to step out from behind always only criticizing as a form of communication. Take constructive & healthy action on behalf of the rights you truly hold dear!

The French did it by God! So can WE!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Gifts from the universe, channeled through our very presence

Two weeks ago just prior to my project launch at the summer art & technology fesitval in my community, I happened on a scribe at the local farmer's market.

She was assertively plying her presence and literary wares by offering free poems to the recipient of your choice. In need of feeling love in the universe, I asked her to channel a poem from the Divine to me.

Asking me questions about favorite colors, what my obstacles in life might be, and asking me to pick up certain objects found in nature from her writing desk_ she asked me to come back in about 1/2 an hour to collect my poem.

Yet, for the artist on my summer routine through the market, I quickly misplaced that follow through obligation, and went on my merry way_ never missing the details of this wonderful encounter at all!

Later the following week as I was riding my bike on one of my normal routes, & heading for home, I heard my name shouted out from the side of the road. Following the sound my eyes immediately caught sight of the whimsical & talented scribe from the farmer's market, and all memory of that moment only a week prior, cascaded immediately within my mind & heart.

I post her talented words here, for you to please enjoy them with me_ may the Divine continue smiling upon your happy summer!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

HERvotes Blog Carnival: Women Need Economic Security

This article originally posted on Ms. blog  

May 11, 2012  

by · Leave a Comment 


In time for Mothers Day, the 12th HERvotes blog carnival is dedicated to getting the word out about economic security for women, especially in their retirement years.  Women need better benefits — not cuts — under social safety net programs.

The economic slump in both the U.S. and Europe has prompted elites to call for “austerity.”  But we know that’s just a code word for cutting social programs women rely on disproportionately.  It turns out, though, that politicians who champion “austerity” will pay a price at the polls.  Just look at Europe: Last week, French voters ousted Nicolas Sarkozy and Greek voters threw the government into crisis — mainly in reaction to harsh cuts in social programs and (in France) an increase in the official retirement age.  Voters get it: austerity leads to a stagnant economy.

Here in the U.S., austerity imposed by state and local governments has thrown hundreds of thousands of government employees out of work, the majority of whom are women.  Want to know why the unemployment rate, while declining, hasn’t gone below 8 percent yet?  It’s mostly because of spending cuts imposed by conservative state officials like Texas Governor Rick Perry, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, Florida Governor Rick Scott, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett and others.

Despite elites’ call for across-the-board federal budget cuts and reductions in Social Security benefits, women’s organizations are calling for improvements in those benefits — specifically, child care credits for those who drop out of the work force to care for children or ill or disabled family members; an improved minimum benefit for lifetime low-wage and part-time workers, who are disproportionately women; fairer rules for disabled widows and surviving spouses, benefit equality for working widows; and equal benefits for same-sex spouses and partners, among other improvements.

In a report to be released today (Friday, May 11), the National Organization for Women Foundation, with the Institute for Women’s Policy Research and the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare call for these improvements to be made. In “Breaking the Social Security Glass Ceiling: A Proposal to Modernize Women’s Benefits” (PDF) we call for updating the program to face the new demographic reality: many women are now both bread-winners and primary care-givers and our guaranteed social insurance system should recognize that fact.

*Join us by sharing the posts below on Facebook, Twitter (using the hashtag #HERvotes), and other social media.

*Part of the #HERvotes blog carnival.

Read More:
My Time, Intellect, Skills and Labor are Worth Less than Those of My Male Peers? Really? Yes, Really.- Anny Bolgiano, Intern, Coalition of Labor Union Women

The Gifts Mothers Really Want- Ellen Bravo, Director, Family Values @ Work

Thank You, Mom, for Teaching Me to Be Safe and Secure- Malore Dusenbery, Special Populations Associate, WOW

Can’t Afford to Work?- Shawn McMahon, Manager of Research and Innovation, WOW

Making a Vital Lifeline More Secure for Women- National Organization for Women

#HERvotes, a multi-organization campaign launched in August 2011, advocates women using our voices and votes to stop the attacks on the major advances of the women’s movement, many of which are at risk in the next election.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Returning Economy to the Economy, to Education, to Culture, to the Environment

As a single woman, who full-time single parented for 23 years, while becoming better educated about emotional/psychological family history I inherited_ to bring up a healthier child & to heal myself responsibly_ I earned my first undergraduate degree at long last, along with the ever accruing interest of a 45k debt load.
Subsequently, I also experience almost 3 years of recession-related unemployment before that turned around wonderfully, yet in continual low-wage paying ways.

I have never had debt this high before.

Now, I am earning a second undergraduate degree.

In the community where I call home, there has never been a panacea of employment here. Yet, I have stayed to accomplish the needed inner healing work first.
Over time then, I have experienced getting stuck in one geographic location because not enough opportunity &/or resource in any one or combination of direction(s) could I make fit together to move on to the next place my life wants to be_ defining material success, greater participation & contribution.
To get where I am inside my sense of self today, I could not have functioned without having first intuitively learned what it takes for me to coordinate self-value with civic responsibility in pursuit of personal dreams, while having raised & love my only, highly independent-child-family_ well enough, to leave Family Of Origin dysfunctionalism behind in one generation. *Garden-variety dysfunctionalism found in 85% of American families to one degree or another.

Shame, avoidance, abandonment_ particularly the unconscious, self-negating & victim-identity kind_ expressing in the public/professional & private domains, as projected judgment toward all others, making up a large enough percentage of the gate-keeping negotiating resistance, as  to contribute significantly in stifling via obstacle-centered energy in the face of meaningful change, as the other side of many a reasonable issue requiring everyone's fully conscious capacity participation. Such as how to reasonably pay for such things as public educational access that requires a more consciously responsible availability on the part of everyone, in order to reach greater collective success for all really?!

What personal, local, state, national or international human systems of access best provide for a broader spectrum of more educated workers, entrepreneurs, retirees & leaders in this world?

I say come fearlessly together, to craft solution-centered responses that are not couched in self-serving negative, reactionary judgmentalism that is only disempowering for absolutely everyone. Leave behind past-looking story identification!

Actively engage. Empower self through constructive participation, to collectively find solution-centered answers that actually work for more & more of everyone_ without exception.

Get over fear from the inside expressing in ugly, destructive, intolerant, & even in passive/aggressive ways on the outside. The social world is reflecting this habit more & more in ways that increasingly impact everyones' capacity to access, grow and perpetuate well-being naturally. Money is not even a fully conscious tool in human interactions YET!

Stubborn, fear-based silence rooted in negative resistance, only pushes away at developing healthier individual coping skills. This quality of silence is only a way to fool one's self that others will/do not notice.

Other's DO notice.

The recession nationally, & internationally reflects what evolutionary progress we are in need of making collectively.

What do you need to learn to consciously love & value yourself so, you are more available to receive & co-participate in the reality of unconditional love in this world, together?

*Photo courtesy of thealiensinmybasement, as well as informed perspectives on this topic from, many other intelligent places on the web!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Here is Something Important to Me_ What About You?

Third Culture Kids

The term “third culture kids” was first coined by Ruth Useem in the 1960’s. She used it to refer to children who lived in a culture different from the one they were born into or the one their parents came from. Their first culture is their birth culture, or parents culture. The second culture is the culture they have moved to. The third culture is the one they create when they move to the new country. They tend to be more comfortable mixing with children who are also third culture kids than they do mixing with children from either their original culture or the culture in their new country. David Pollock, author of “Third Culture Kids”, writes:
[A third culture kid is] a person who has spent a significant part of his or her developmental years outside the parents’ culture. The TCK builds relationships to all of the cultures, while not having full ownership of any. Although elements from each culture are assimilated into the TCK’s life experience, the sense of belonging is in relationship to others of a similar background.
Third culture kids (TCK’s) generally find it easier to adapt to new cultures and will be more likely to move often as adults. If they return to their home country they may experience reverse culture shock as they pine for the foreign country they have left behind. They are more likely to choose careers that lead them to live overseas or travel often, but may have more difficulty adjusting to long lasting relationships as they have been used to frequently saying goodbye to friends as children. Studies of adult TCK’s who have returned to their home country show that 90% of them feel “out of synch” with their peers who have never lived overseas.
Although they do not necessarily relate to their peer group in their home country there are many positives to growing up as a third culture kid. As adults, they tend to feel they can tackle any problem and adapt to any group. They usually maintain a strong interest in international issues and generally are comfortable making change in their lives when things are not going well rather than continuing with negative patterns and more than two thirds actively participate in their local communities on a voluntary basis.
Divided Loyalties
One thing that many TCK’s struggle with is the issue of divided loyalties. If their host country has a different approach to politics, religion or world issues than their home country, they can find it confusing when trying to deal with the different points of view. They are likely to have friends from a wide range of countries and some of those children’s home countries may have conflicts with other children’s home countries. All of this can be confusing for them as they try to understand the deeper issues related to cross cultural conflict. Talking to your children when these issues arise, especially if there are specific tensions in the world related to politics or religion, can help them to come to terms with understanding that the world is more grey than black and white.
Three Dimensional Reality of the World
TCK’s tend to have broader experience of the world than children who have not lived outside their home country. They may have holidays that include trekking on elephants, observing orangutans in the jungle and sleeping in longhouses. They are likely to be comfortable with long haul travel on planes and have an intimate understanding of the how the mini bar works in the hotel room! While most children in Western countries have read about volcanoes in their text books, Bali TCK’s are more likely to have climbed one and have seen them each day on their journey to school. All of their experiences give them a richer, deeper understanding of the world. This vivid reality can also be difficult for them to come to terms with. Seeing poverty firsthand can affect them emotionally. It can help to get them involved in giving back to their local community in some way, developing an understanding that we all have a role to play in eliminating poverty and making meaningful contributions to society.
While they may have a deep understanding of the country they live in and a broader understanding of the world as a whole than non-TCK’s, they may have less understanding of the culture, geography and history of their home country. British children will experience Nyepi and Galungan in Bali but are unlikely to experience Guy Fawkes in the way their peers back in the UK would do. If it is important for your children to learn about the history and culture of your home country you may have to focus on this yourself at home rather than having your children’s school address this need.
Recommended Reading: Third Culture Kids by David Pollock and Ruth van Reken
*I discovered this article on LivingInBali

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Review for some; new considerations for others: How far have we actually come?

Woman must have her freedom
—the fundamental freedom 
of choosing whether or not she 
shall be a mother and how 
many children she will have.
_Margaret Sanger 

  Sanger and Her Sons

Margaret Sanger (1879–1966).  Woman and the New Race.  1920.

The chronicle of Sanger’s decades-long battle to legalize and develop information on the prevention of venereal disease and then methods of birth control, during which she endured indictment, exile and prison.

XVIII. The Goal

WHAT is the goal of woman’s upward struggle? Is it voluntary motherhood? Is it general freedom? Or is it the birth of a new race? For freedom is not fruitless, but prolific of higher things. Being the most sacred aspect of woman’s freedom, voluntary motherhood is motherhood in its highest and holiest form. It is motherhood unchained—motherhood ready to obey its own urge to remake the world.
  Voluntary motherhood implies a new morality—a vigorous, constructive, liberated morality. That morality will, first of all, prevent the submergence of womanhood into motherhood. It will set its face against the conversion of women into mechanical maternity and toward the creation of a new race.
  Woman’s rôle has been that of an incubator and little more. She has given birth to an incubated race. She has given to her children what little she was permitted to give, but of herself, of her personality, almost nothing. In the mass, she has brought forth quantity, not quality. The requirement of a male dominated civilization has been numbers. She has met that requirement.
  It is the essential function of voluntary motherhood to choose its own mate, to determine the time of childbearing and to regulate strictly the number of offspring. Natural affection upon her part, instead of selection dictated by social or economic advantage, will give her a better fatherhood for her children. The exercise of her right to decide how many children she will have and when she shall have them will procure for her the time necessary to the development of other faculties than that of reproduction. She will give play to her tastes, her talents and her ambitions. She will become a full-rounded human being.
  Thus and only thus will woman be able to transmit to her offspring those qualities which make for a greater race.
  The importance of developing these qualities in the mothers for transmission to the children is apparent when we recall certain well-established principles of biology. In all of the animal species below the human, motherhood has a clearly discernible superiority over fatherhood. It is the first pulse of organic life. Fatherhood is the fertilizing element. Its development, compared to that of the mother cell, is comparatively new. Likewise, its influence upon the progeny is comparatively small. There are weighty authorities who assert that through the female alone comes those modifications of form, capacity and ability which constitute evolutionary progress. It was the mothers who first developed cunning in chase, ingenuity in escaping enemies, skill in obtaining food, and adaptability. It was they also who attained unfailing discretion in leadership, adaptation to environment and boldness in attack. When the animal kingdom as a whole is surveyed, these stand out as distinctly feminine traits. They stand out also as the characteristics by which the progress of species is measured.
  Why is all this true of the lower species yet not true of human beings? The secret is revealed by one significant fact—the female’s functions in these animal species are not limited to motherhood alone. Every organ and faculty is fully employed and perfected. Through the development of the individual mother, better and higher types of animals are produced and carried forward. In a word, natural law makes the female the expression and the conveyor of racial efficiency.
  Birth control itself, often denounced as a violation of natural law, is nothing more or less than the facilitation of the process of weeding out the unfit, of preventing the birth of defectives or of those who will become defectives. So, in compliance with nature’s working plan, we must permit womanhood its full development before we can expect of it efficient motherhood. If we are to make racial progress, this development of womanhood must precede motherhood in every individual woman. Then and then only can the mother cease to be an incubator and be a mother indeed. Then only can she transmit to her sons and daughters the qualities which make strong individuals and, collectively, a strong race.
  Voluntary motherhood also implies the right of marriage without maternity. Two utterly different functions are developed in the two relationships. In order to give the mate relationship its full and free play, it is necessary that no woman should be a mother against her will. There are other reasons, of course—reasons more frequently emphasized—but the reason just mentioned should never be overlooked. It is as important to the race as to the woman, for through it is developed that high love impulse which, conveyed to the child, attunes and perfects its being.
  Marriage, quite aside from parentage, also gives two people invaluable experience. When parentage follows in its proper time, it is a better parentage because of the mutual adjustment and development—because of the knowledge thus gained. Few couples are fitted to understand the sacred mystery of child life until they have solved some of the problems arising out of their own love lives.
  Maternal love, which usually follows upon a happy, satisfying mate love, becomes a strong and urgent craving. It then exists for two powerful, creative functions. First, for its own sake, and then for the sake of further enriching the conjugal relationship. It is from such soil that the new life should spring. It is the inherent right of the new life to have its inception in such physical ground, in such spiritual atmosphere. The child thus born is indeed a flower of love and tremendous joy. It has within it the seeds of courage and of power. This child will have the greatest strength to surmount hardships, to withstand tyrannies, to set still higher the mark of human achievement.
  Shall we pause here to speak again of the rights of womanhood, in itself and of itself, to be absolutely free? We have talked of this right so much in these pages, only to learn that in the end, a free womanhood turns of its own desire to a free and happy motherhood, a motherhood which does not submerge the woman, but which is enriched because she is unsubmerged. When we voice, then, the necessity of setting the feminine spirit utterly and absolutely free, thought turns naturally not to rights of the woman, nor indeed of the mother, but to the rights of the child—of all children in the world. For this is the miracle of free womanhood, that in its freedom it becomes the race mother and opens its heart in fruitful affection for humanity.
  How narrow, how pitifully puny has become motherhood in its chains! The modern motherhood enfolds one or two adoring children of its own blood, and cherishes, protects and loves them. It does not reach out to all children. When motherhood is a high privilege, not a sordid, slavish requirement, it will encircle all. Its deep, passionate intensity will overflow the limits of blood relationship. Its beauty will shine upon all, for its beauty is of the soul, whose power of enfoldment is unbounded.
  When motherhood becomes the fruit of a deep yearning, not the result of ignorance or accident, its children will become the foundation of a new race. There will be no killing of babies in the womb by abortion, nor through neglect in foundling homes, nor will there be infanticide. Neither will children die by inches in mills and factories. No man will dare to break a child’s life upon the wheel of toil.
  Voluntary motherhood will not be passive, resigned, or weak. Out of its craving will come forth a fierceness of love for its fruits that will make such men as remain unawakened stand aghast at its fury when offended. The tigress is less terrible in defense of her offspring than will be the human mother. The daughters of such women will not be given over to injustice and to prostitution; the sons will not perish in industry nor upon the battle field. Nor could they meet these all too common fates if an undaunted motherhood were there to defend. Childhood and youth will be too valuable in the eyes of society to waste them in the murderous mills of blind greed and hate.
  This is the dawn. Womanhood shakes off its bondage. It asserts its right to be free. In its freedom, its thoughts turn to the race. Like begets like. We gather perfect fruit from perfect trees. The race is but the amplification of its mother body, the multiplication of flesh habitations—beautified and perfected for souls akin to the mother soul.
  The relentless efforts of reactionary authority to suppress the message of birth control and of voluntary motherhood are futile. The powers of reaction cannot now prevent the feminine spirit from breaking its bonds. When the last fetter falls the evils that have resulted from the suppression of woman’s will to freedom, will pass. Child slavery, prostitution, feeblemindedness, physical deterioration, hunger, oppression and war will disappear from the earth.
  In their subjection women have not been brave enough, strong enough, pure enough to bring forth great sons and daughters. Abused soil brings forth stunted growths. An abused motherhood has brought forth a low order of humanity. Great beings come forth at the call of high desire. Fearless motherhood goes out in love and passion for justice to all mankind. It brings forth fruits after its own kind. When the womb becomes fruitful through the desire of an aspiring love, another Newton will come forth to unlock further the secrets of the earth and the stars. There will come a Plato who will be understood, a Socrates who will drink no hemlock, and a Jesus who will not die upon the cross. These and the race that is to be in America await upon a motherhood that is to be sacred because it is free.

*This article & the entire contents of this information, can be found in its original form on this website:

Monday, April 16, 2012

Bombard Apple

In the wake of the Java breach that is among those attack viruses that are (shall we say continually) making Apple computers (more) vulnerable, I recently read this sentiment on the web:  

Unfortunately if you are running Leopard (OSX 10.5) or earlier, you must manually disable or remove Java, because Apple no longer supports those older versions. It would be good if Apple issued an update for these older versions, because many people still use them.

I say let's do something about that!

In the USA, here is Apple's Software Upgrade Center telephone number: (888) 840-8433

Call them repeatedly to say how much those of us with the older versions, also need our computers to function up-to-date. Because, if we only accept things without registering preference, then there is no choice! Customer feedback makes quality in the marketplace run also! How do you want your experiences in the market to run, for you or excluding you?

I will buy my next Mac, when I have the money_ NOT when a corporation squeezes me into conforming my decision-making according to its sales reports schedule! 

Call Apple_ tell THEM what YOU want_ & you don't have to be scared, or insecure or yell at anybody to make this turn around for our benefit. We are loyal Apple customers who deserve to have our operating systems reasonably taken care of!

In North America, call: (888) 840-8433_ tell Apple what your OS needs to run secure!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Top 5 Regrets of the Dying

Bronnie Ware, Writer, Songwriter

*This article was found on April 7, 2012 on Huff Post, Good News_ The Blog
For many years I worked in palliative care. My patients were those who had gone home to die. Some incredibly special times were shared. I was with them for the last 3 to 12 weeks of their lives.
People grow a lot when they are faced with their own mortality. I learnt never to underestimate someone's capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear, anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every single patient found their peace before they departed though, every one of them.

When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again. Here are the most common five:

1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honored even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.
It is very important to try and honour at least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.

2. I wish I didn't work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children's youth and their partner's companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.
By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new lifestyle.

3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.
Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.
We cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly, in the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either way, you win.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.
It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip. But when you are faced with your approaching death, the physical details of life fall away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains in the final weeks, love and relationships.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called 'comfort' of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.
When you are on your deathbed, what others think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.
Life is a choice. It is YOUR life. Choose consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly. Choose happiness.

This post was originally published on Inspiration and Chai.
Bronnie Ware is a writer and songwriter from Australia who spent several years caring for dying people in their homes. She has recently released a full-length book titled 'The Top Five Regrets of the Dying - A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing'. It is a memoir of her own life and how it was transformed through the regrets of the dying people she cared for. For more information, please visit Bronnie's official website at or her blog at

Sunday, March 25, 2012

This just in from MoveOn!

"This hard-hitting investigation of the 1% at its very worst is the latest from acclaimed director Robert Greenwald.

Charles and David Koch are using their billions to put a stranglehold on American democracy.

What are we going to do about it?"

1)_ Start by buying a DVD or 3_

2)_ next, host screenings!

3)_ Communicate about the information learned, and

4)_ take collective action to stop this heinous, self-aggrandized_ greed!

Gotta love the creative, explorative side of technology!

Just watched this vid on Pinterest!
It is an idea worth spreading!
I really want to learn more about this camera technology!!

Take a 2-minute watch:

Monday, March 12, 2012

U. S. Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton

Just really listen to this praise of the 2012 International Women's Summit.

I can see a time in this world, when we are finally & truly at the end of such summits on the status of women & girls, BECAUSE the entire human family across this world has finally transitioned into a mentality & heart consciousness that embraces ALL women & children, versus killing, shaming, ostracizing, economically ignoring, or expressing intolerance in any form...

When patriarchy is finally dead & what evolves in its place is not one over another_ rather what is reflective of us ALL together.  One human species on one planet, living intelligently with all other sentient life-forms, finally consciously aware of our role in this relationship of life on this living, breathing planet.

A place so ecologically, spiritually, emotionally, physiologically, and intellectually healthy, that cynicism, or sarcasm_ dominance, or brutality, darkness of any expression no longer dominates, or flourishes.

Instead we are finally a free species realizing our greatest potential in full view of one another, as a dominantly giving, & mutually nourishing; co-creating species.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The U.N. Threat to Internet Freedom

OPINION                                                                                                                                                       FEBRUARY 21, 2012   

Top-down, international regulation is antithetical to the Net, which has flourished under its current governance model.

By ROBERT M. MCDOWELL                                                                                                

On Feb. 27, a diplomatic process will begin in Geneva that could result in a new treaty giving the United Nations unprecedented powers over the Internet. Dozens of countries, including Russia and China, are pushing hard to reach this goal by year's end. As Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said last June, his goal and that of his allies is to establish "international control over the Internet" through the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a treaty-based organization under U.N. auspices.                                                                                            

If successful, these new regulatory proposals would upend the Internet's flourishing regime, which has been in place since 1988. That year, delegates from 114 countries gathered in Australia to agree to a treaty that set the stage for dramatic liberalization of international telecommunications. This insulated the Internet from economic and technical regulation and quickly became the greatest deregulatory success story of all time.                                          
Since the Net's inception, engineers, academics, user groups and others have convened in bottom-up nongovernmental organizations to keep it operating and thriving through what is known as a "multi-stakeholder" governance model. This consensus-driven private-sector approach has been the key to the Net's phenomenal success.                                                  

In 1995, shortly after it was privatized, only 16 million people used the Internet world-wide. By 2011, more than two billion were online—and that number is growing by as much as half a million every day. This explosive growth is the direct result of governments generally keeping their hands off the Internet sphere.                                                                                       

Net access, especially through mobile devices, is improving the human condition more quickly—and more fundamentally—than any other technology in history. Nowhere is this more true than in the developing world, where unfettered Internet technologies are expanding economies and raising living standards.
Farmers who live far from markets are now able to find buyers for their crops through their Internet-connected mobile devices without assuming the risks and expenses of traveling with their goods. Worried parents are able to go online to locate medicine for their sick children. And proponents of political freedom are better able to share information and organize support to break down the walls of tyranny.

 The Internet has also been a net job creator. A recent McKinsey study found that for every job disrupted by Internet connectivity, 2.6 new jobs are created. It is no coincidence that these wonderful developments blossomed as the Internet migrated further away from government control.                                                                     

Today, however, Russia, China and their allies within the 193 member states of the ITU want to renegotiate the 1988 treaty to expand its reach into previously unregulated areas. Reading even a partial list of proposals that could be codified into international law next December at a conference in Dubai is chilling:                

• Subject cyber security and data privacy to international control;                                            

• Allow foreign phone companies to charge fees for "international" Internet traffic, perhaps even on a "per-click" basis for certain Web destinations, with the goal of generating revenue for state-owned phone companies and government treasuries;                                                       

• Impose unprecedented economic regulations such as mandates for rates, terms and conditions for currently unregulated traffic-swapping agreements known as "peering."              

• Establish for the first time ITU dominion over important functions of multi-stakeholder Internet governance entities such as the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the nonprofit entity that coordinates the .com and .org Web addresses of the world;

• Subsume under intergovernmental control many functions of the Internet Engineering Task Force, the Internet Society and other multi-stakeholder groups that establish the engineering and technical standards that allow the Internet to work;                                                            

• Regulate international mobile roaming rates and practices.                                                  

Many countries in the developing world, including India and Brazil, are particularly intrigued by these ideas. Even though Internet-based technologies are improving billions of lives everywhere, some governments feel excluded and want more control.                                                               

And let's face it, strong-arm regimes are threatened by popular outcries for political freedom that are empowered by unfettered Internet connectivity. They have formed impressive coalitions, and their efforts have progressed significantly.                                                         

Merely saying "no" to any changes to the current structure of Internet governance is likely to be a losing proposition. A more successful strategy would be for proponents of Internet freedom and prosperity within every nation to encourage a dialogue among all interested parties, including governments and the ITU, to broaden the multi-stakeholder umbrella with the goal of reaching consensus to address reasonable concerns. As part of this conversation, we should underscore the tremendous benefits that the Internet has yielded for the developing world through the multi-stakeholder model.                                                                                

Upending this model with a new regulatory treaty is likely to partition the Internet as some countries would inevitably choose to opt out. A balkanized Internet would be devastating to global free trade and national sovereignty. It would impair Internet growth most severely in the developing world but also globally as technologists are forced to seek bureaucratic permission to innovate and invest. This would also undermine the proliferation of new cross-border technologies, such as cloud computing.                                                                                  

A top-down, centralized, international regulatory overlay is antithetical to the architecture of the Net, which is a global network of networks without borders. No government, let alone an intergovernmental body, can make engineering and economic decisions in lightning-fast Internet time. Productivity, rising living standards and the spread of freedom everywhere, but especially in the developing world, would grind to a halt as engineering and business decisions become politically paralyzed within a global regulatory body.                                   

Any attempts to expand intergovernmental powers over the Internet—no matter how incremental or seemingly innocuous—should be turned back. Modernization and reform can be constructive, but not if the end result is a new global bureaucracy that departs from the multi-stakeholder model. Enlightened nations should draw a line in the sand against new regulations while welcoming reform that could include a nonregulatory role for the ITU.

Pro-regulation forces are, thus far, much more energized and organized than those who favor the multi-stakeholder approach. Regulation proponents only need to secure a simple majority of the 193 member states to codify their radical and counterproductive agenda. Unlike the U.N. Security Council, no country can wield a veto in ITU proceedings. With this in mind, some estimate that approximately 90 countries could be supporting intergovernmental Net regulation—a mere seven short of a majority.                                                                       

While precious time ticks away, the U.S. has not named a leader for the treaty negotiation. We must awake from our slumber and engage before it is too late. Not only do these developments have the potential to affect the daily lives of all Americans, they also threaten freedom and prosperity across the globe.                                  

Mr. McDowell is a commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission.

Monday, February 13, 2012

A National Job's Plan! Wait a Minute! Are you kidding me?!

Take the time to listen to this short clip & then pass it around.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Vagina Monologues 2012

Catch the message performed live in a local theatre where you live.

End the violence against all women & girls world-wide!

A Special Valentine Wish for all Women

Heart Disease in Women Awareness Campaign

Have a Happy Healthy Heart Every Day

Sheikha Al Mayassa

“What should culture in the 21st century look like?”

A talk to 'remind us of the power of culture and art — of the social, existential and political impact culture and art have on a nation’s identity and cultural development — and how discussing ideas becomes a way to connect people locally, regionally and globally.'

Mary Catherine Bateson on TEDxWomen


x= independently organized event(s)

It's been awhile since I've posted here.

And I just had to post this.

With all that is going on in the world right now, take a look: