Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Change is not only possible, it is natural.

Natural Expectations : a definition

Natural expectations are sets of inherent, intrinsic design implications that emerge from within living organisms.

Another way to express this would be to say that a three legged stool has obvious immediate design implications, as would a mug, or a palm leaf woven basket. The stool is a seat or a table, the mug, an open container with a handle, is for drinking or scooping, the basket is for carrying, or holding objects within it, and it’s strap arrangement, if it has one, might indicate how it is to be carried. It’s an analogy because the stool, the mug nor the basket, are all non ‘living’ ‘things’ and are used by living beings. The materials that comprise those objects may in time be returned to nature, yet they as objects do not live, nor do they grow.

What I am writing about are the natural expectations’ of living processes.

Plants are an expectation of sunlight within certain frequency ranges, varying from plant to plant. Some utilise more direct sunlight than others. Each one has its place.

In the forest habitat Perma-culturists and Forest Gardeners describe 7 layers of light variation, from the ground to the topmost leaves, and have observed that a myriad of different plants work on all those varying levels of light, collectively and individually. Put any one of those plants in a layer it’s not normally naturally part of and it will struggle, and its natural growth cycles will be disrupted. The plants natural expectations are not being met.

Each plant in the web of life provides materials and more often than not often living space for many, many organisms, all of whom are part of the essential optimum health picture. In a forest with many hundreds and thousands of species those relationships will be incredibly interwoven in a non-linear fashion. The entire web is an expression of many, many specific natural expectations being fulfilled. All inter-related! That inter dependence is also part of the natural expectations, or design implications of living processes.

Eyes are an expectation of sunlight within a certain frequency range. We human beings cannot see ultra-violet or infra-red light with our eyes. Yet there are many animals that do use those frequencies. It is interesting to note that civilisation has developed technology to extend our sensory range, to ‘see’ those UV or IR frequencies, primarily as military/security tools and as such mostly for ill.

Ears are an expectation of sound waves. Again there is a limit, a certain frequency range outside of which nothing is sensed by that particular organ or organism or collective of cells operating as they do. Nature has determined this limit. It is no accident. Irrespective of whatever determines such processes, these naturally determined expectations are absolutely meaningful, and of vital importance to all living processes.

Plants need water. Some more than others. The local availability, source and quality of water determines what plants will thrive, and of course those plants will live there and will thrive. Salt Marshes and Bog Marshes are quite differing habitats. A few plants can handle both, most are specific to the precise habitat and it’s variations.

Another way to sense this would be to say that what we see in natural living processes is that those intrinsic, that is to say, essentially innate and natural expectations determine the parameters for the optimum health of any living process. Meeting those natural expectations ensures optimum health.

There is one other natural expectation that inheres to all living processes; that is that there is no such ‘thing’ or ‘concept’ as ‘thrash’, ‘rubbish’ or waste.

Nature does not create any waste. Ever. In natural living processes ALL materials utilised by living processes are returned to the nutrient cycles in forms that other organisms or living processes can metabolise. That return processes is pee-ing, poo-ing, leaf shedding, skin shedding, and of course dieing.

Decaying. Bio-degrading … though I don’t much like that term.

Bio-returning would be a better description, less judgemental.

This constant return of metabolised materials increases the over-all fecundity of the natural habitat. That too is a natural expectation of the entire biota or habitat.

Another way of saying this is that this very simple no-waste principle ensures the continued optimum health and growth of the habitat.

What it means, for me at least, is that EVERYTHING that lives on Earth, and everything done by those living organisms is inter-related, profoundly connected in a vast food web that feeds all life – all waste is food for life - so that life grows ever more abundant on Earth. And each and every living organism is embodied with a set of natural expectations.

However being an intelligent system, there is another dynamic that works with these sets of natural expectations that ensures that they are not rigid or brittle..... and that is the ability to take in information and to change or 'adapt' behaviour to meet new circumstances.

It follows that even the slightest input of ‘new’ or ‘alien’ materials will have consequences and those consequences cannot be easily predicted, especially where nature has not determined a bio-logical metabolic living process to handle that material, to utilise it and or return it to the nutrient cycle. The ‘new’ or ‘alien’ material can become toxic if it ‘accidentally’ interferes with natural bio-logical processes; though hind sight does of course reveal the extent and depth of those consequences, even as this is strangely ignored by so many in this modern dominant culture.

To recap, ALL natural living processes have specific and precise natural expectations that are intrinsic and that determine the parameters for the optimum health of each living process; and that the constant meeting those expectations at the individual and community levels increases the overall health of the entire species, and those many species living at optimum health, by metabolising materials created by each other they collectively ensure the optimum health of the entire habitat.

And that all organisms, living in a constantly changing environment have the ability to learn, that is to say that they can receive information from the environment, and use that information to make changes in their behaviour, in such manner as to maintain the overall balance of life. Thus there is no ‘waste’ in natural processes, because all materials are left in a state that specifically enables them to be metabolised by other living processes. Life feeds life.

Change is possible, even for a rigid Institutional Society such as the Dominant Culture which is undermining natural processes and causing great harm. The question therefore is will 'it' or it's constituents make those choices based on learning and on a desire to maintian the vitality of natural processes. That's you and I, my friends and all other human beings. Even David Cameron retains that possibility. Even the Pope.

If they chose not to make those choices, then they have to be held accountable for the adverse affects of their behaviour.

Kindest regards


Do what you love, it's Your Gift to Universe

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Saturday, 10 December 2011

Climate Change Denial-ism Put into Context.

There has been lots of writings about Climate Change denial-ism.

One of the more frequent claims is that this denial emerges from the unwillingness of those whose material comforts are so great in comparison to those of previous generations to even begin to think of forgoing those comforts. Be they 'everyday folk' or wealthy Power players.

In my view this is wholly inadequate as a explanation. It also has potential to become a means to demonise and de-humanise 'others', and be used as a means of oppression and social divisiveness that feeds Power. The blame game is not the same as asking that people take on social responsibility  based on understanding.

When it comes to 'denial-ism' we have many, many precedents and analogues. Here's a just a few to indicate the tenor of denial-ism.

The German people during the late 1920s and 1930s, as Hitler was elevated into Power, at a time when Eugenics was a respected 'scientific' ideology amongst many, many ruling elites and everyday people across the world. The German people could see what was happening, and yet so many simply turned a blind eye to the growing abuses perpetrated by the movement of which Hitler was a figurehead, and actually worked within that system as the managers, clerks and manual labourers necessary for such a system to function. What had they learned about abusive power in their childhoods that made them so compliant with so obviously abusive Governance?

The 'American' European People during the forced removal of the Aboriginal Peoples of North America and Canada, (and ever since), and the 'Australian' European People regarding the oppression of the Aboriginal peoples of Australia. Where did they get the idea that the Aboriginal people were sub-human and could be so cruelly treated?

The Western World in general with regard to the Aboriginal World - the portrayal of those cultures as 'savage' or 'primitive' as a whole, and therefore suitable for 'assimilation' or 'extirpation'. And the denial of that vast historical trauma, as well as the claim that it belongs to previous generations, to the past, while in reality it is still being practised.

The Irish of the 20th and 21st Century regarding the political realities of the Irish 'Famine's of the mid 19th Century. The incidence of potato blight was intentionally utilised to depopulate Ireland, and to populate the USA and Australia by mass immigration, in essence to provide cheap labour for the expansionism of the Empires of commerce. This reveals to those with eyes to see the pattern of intentional cruelty and manipulation that led directly to the partition of Ireland, the Civil War and belies the carefully crafted illusion of Ireland's entry into the modern world of statehood and a friendly relationship between the installed Powers in Ireland's State with those Powers that had so cruelly abused the indigenous Irish for so long. Forget about the truth, there is money to be made.

The long term intergenerational trauma of this experience had horrific consequences for hundreds of thousands of Irish children placed in the 'care' of Church and State Institutions. This is still a taboo subject in polite Irish Society. Why?

The Catholic world-wide congregation's response in the past 30 years as the 'scandal' of widespread, centuries long, child abuse unfolds and as the Catholic Hierarchy continues to refuse to address the matter honestly and honourably. How can so much be known about this horrific history and so little be done to address it, not least by the people outside of that Institution, whose own family members were victimised?

The Western World post "Silent Spring'... The 'green revolution' has surged forwards since then, unabated. Birdsong is ever rarer. Bee populations are falling. Monsanto is still pushing GMO crops and Supermarket giants and Pharmaceutical Corporations are determining agricultural practice, whilst the adverse health affects are costing National health Services more every year. How can such an insane and obviously damaging practice prevail for so long?

The Western World in the lead up to, and during the Afghan and Iraq Wars, during the bombing of Libya. There were no WMD in Iraq, there is no solid evidence that 9/11 was planned and executed from within Afghanistan, and the threat of massive civilian slaughter in Benghazi is proven to have been a fabrication. David Cameron sold Military technology and weapons the the Egyptian Military which has been used to oppress the Egyptian people since the 'fall' of Mubarak. Why do people buy these lies about 'bringing democracy' tot he Arab world?

The widespread denial of the wounds associated with Coercive Compulsory Schooling Systems. 'Our' schools are failing children, punishing them with target based achievement training designed to put the children under intense psychological pressure; bullying is rampant and schools unwilling to admit the scale of the problem, let alone address it's roots in peer pressure that is largely driven by consumer marketing and media propaganda. Ritalin is the tool of choice to control those children whose energy and vitality and frustration threatens the illusion that schools are educational institutions, as opposed to doctrinal training centres. How can so many parents be blind to the problems their own children are faced with every day?

To suggest that it is merely a question of 'comforts' that accrue to those who benefit in some way from the status quo is to avoid a deeper analysis, as to the psycho-dynamics of denial. It might be comforting to some who might claim, in their own minds, to be ready for a down grading of their own comforts, for the benefit of all,  which might also be yet another way of claiming the 'higher moral ground', of self aggrandisement. Ruthless self honesty is essential here.

Alice Miller was the first modern writer to look at Germany and to elucidate the psycho-dynamic that fed the situation in Germany, and to source it's roots in how children were treated, and how parents were instructed by societal power in their relationships with children. Her book "For Your Own Good : The roots of Violence in Child Rearing" is one of the most important books of the 20th Century. She showed that when an adult mistreats a child, telling the child repeatedly that "This is for your own good!" the child internalises the meaning and values associated with the mistreatment and adopts them as her or his own, and that makes it more likely that as an adult they too will mistreat their own children, and that this occurs as an intergenerational behaviour pattern that is oppressive.

The child's natural anger at such mistreatment is suppressed by the child, and emerges in the adult as a diffuse anger that is unresolved and that can and is used by Power to manipulate hatred and anger towards 'others' who are carefully demonised, thus giving permission to a whole generation to attack those defined as 'others' : jews, gays, communists in Hitler's era; protestors, muslims, immigrants and 'terrorists' today in Great Britian.

James Prescott and John Bowlby researched the impact of the disruption of the natural child-mother bonding processes and to link those disruptions to how societies behave, and provided clear evidence that the disruption of the natural child-mother bonding processes underpinned the emergence of Hierarchically Violent Societies 

Prescott's 1975 paper 'The Origins of Violence' revealed two streams of society: the Hierarchically Violent Society and the Empathic Egalitarian Society.

Here's a brief outline of the differences he observed.

That research is now corroborated to some degree, though there are some doubts and questions yet to be answered, by neuroscience, by pre-natal developmental science and birth psychology.

The adverse behaviour patterns that have been perpetuated, that lead to the problems of Habitat degradation - of which Climate Change is but one symptom - have their roots in this disruption of natural, biologically mandated environmental and experiential processes that disrupt our natural maturation and development of sense of self, and of connection to others.

The psychology of any given society is both revealed and perpetuated in how that society treats it's children and most vulnerable members.

Change this and we change everything.

Failure to change this, and we will only create new rules with which to oppress each other, thinking all the time that our rules are better justified.

We have many, many examples of this 'revolutionary' approach and the abuses it perpetuates, from the French revolution to Pol Pot.

Healing and Recovery cannot be coerced, they must be chosen. It is also true that healing and recovery benefit greatly from adequate empathic and practical support, and it is true that some few have been able to engage their healing and recovery without much support, often in the face of strong opposition.

Loss of self empathy and the urge to power - a short video. :

We, all of us, have much work to do, in many areas. And for our children's children's sake it must be, above all, honest.

That honesty is the cleaning up of our internal personal ecology as much as the external.

Kindest regards


Do what you love, it's Your Gift to Universe

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