A time to read. And it is time.
With the failure of the Catholic Church, the Evangelical Prosperity Churches, the Republican and Democratic Parties, the Supreme Court, the House of Representatives, the Senate, the Executive Branch, the Banks, the Insurance Companies, the News Media, a vast number of Corporations, the Colleges and Universities more interested in endowments and self-preservation over essential commitment to knowledge-learning-wisdom, and, finally, Primary & Secondary Schools, Prisons, and Unions, the Police Forces, the Military, and the whole National Security State -- we have a big problem: Who, if anyone, can be trusted?
"The bulk of our knowledge -- perhaps virtually all of it -- depends on others in various ways," writes political philosopher Russell Hardin. "We take most knowledge on authority from others who presumably are in a position to know it."
(from, Twilight of the Elites, America After Meritocracy, by Christopher Hayes, c.2012, p.106)Then later:
When our most central institutions are no longer trusted, we each take refuge in smaller, balkanized epistemic encampments, aided by the unprecedented information technology at our disposal. As some of these encampments build higher and higher fences, walling themselves off from science and empiricism, we approach a terrifying prospect: a society that may no longer be capable of reaching the kind of basic agreement necessary for social progress. (Hayes, p.107)Finally:
I've seen firsthand that you can't trust consensus, because consensus can be horribly and violently wrong. You can't trust those people with the greatest proximity to the issue in question, because proximity can blind them as much if not more than distance. And you certainly cannot simply assume good faith, particularly from our pillar institutions and the powerful elites who run them.
The old methods of figuring out the world have failed us. So we turn to the new, and find they can do everything imaginable except restore to us the faith we lost. (Hayes, p.125)
I'd like to think there is somewhere out there a viable, trustworthy, caring, effective, knowledgable resource capable of penetrating the dense wall of doubt and bad experience impeding our next steps toward sane and thoughtful living in the world. But I don't see it. Not yet.
Intelligence, thinking and reasoning in the old fashioned way, (not the secret societies snooping and surveilling our every thought and move), would be nice.
Intuition, the seeing beyond seeing, would help.
Instinct, trusting what we actually feel about persons, institutions, and situations -- would work.
Imagination, the willingness to follow a flight of fancy and formulation of fecund invitation into creative expression -- would sprinkle glory on our paths.
Interpretation and Inventiveness -- would round out our willingness to look deeply, think widely, question strongly, and care intensely.
Idiorrhythmic Integrality -- will bring us home.
Definition of IDIORRHYTHMIC
Eastern Church : self-regulating —used of (1) monks that live separately, hold property, work individually in supporting themselves, and though members of a monastery supervised by an elected council are not under direct daily supervision or (2) of monasteries so organized.
Origin of IDIORRHYTHMIC
LGk idiorrhythmos (fr. Gk idio- + rhythmos measured motion, measure, proportion) + E -ic — more at rhythm
This word doesn't usually appear in our free dictionary, but the definition from our premium Unabridged Dictionary is offered here on a limited basis. Note that some information is displayed differently in the Unabridged.
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/idiorrhythmicI agree, that's a lot of "I's":
(Intelligence, Intuition, Instinct, Imagination, Interpretation, Inventiveness, Idiorrhythmic Integrality)
We need to contemplate and cultivate self-regulation. We need to contemplate and cultivate the whole (i.e. integrality) and not remain addicted to the partial.
Things are dire.
There is an approaching boundary beyond which no returning is possible. It is guarded by fear and agents of fear. It is ruled by suspicion, bullets, mistrust, and sneering privilage. Be wary of approaching and crossing that boundary.
Perhaps we already have, as a society, as a culture, as a country, as a civilization.
But here's the thing: As an individual, as a person with remaining wits and pluck and vim and keen sense of absurdity -- you are still in the clear.
Wander that freedom.
Don't cross over into that desperate terrain of deadened heart and mind.
Stay alert and vital.
Trust your-Self the It-self.
What we used to think of as "God"--out there and away-- is not out there and away. The vibrant source of integrity, self-proportion, and trusted-being, is you in concert with all that comprises and constitutes your being-at-all, especially your being-in-the-world.
Let's come home.
Let's not be them.
Let's be us. All of us within and without a them conceived in a dualistic separating mind. Perhaps, better thought, no-us/no-them, only this, being as it is, itself.
Everything belongs to itself.