Follow by Email

Translate

Monday, March 19, 2018

The Physics and Spirituality of Gift Economy


Finally, here it is: the updated video of the presentation I gave last year, plus the edited transcript of it!  I'm excited about it.  Frankly, I passionately feel in my bones I'm onto something.  If you feel the same, please share this.  It's an hour & a quarter long.  I was going to divide it into short segments but then realized it would be like dividing a knit sweater.    






Introduction - Summarizing Outline 8:26



Everything I will be talking about is summed up in this outline:
  1. Commerce tries to replace two economic laws which already govern the physical universe:
A.  everything is already paid for.
(This sounds like a mystical concept right now.  But I want to demonstrate that it is physics).
B. Yet, there is also delayed reward:  What goes around comes around.
C. Both the above laws are really  one law.
  1. There are 2 credit-and-debt creeds that block our awareness of these truths yet point to these truths:
  1. The Creed of Money
  2. The creed of religion.

This is what I want to demonstrate, that both money and religion are belief systems.  
Belief systems aren’t necessarily bad.  But they can become bad.

My Personal Experience of Economic Principles

Realizing a Mysticism of Gift Economy



If you don't know, I gave up money in 2000, and was living basically outdoors with some house sitting here and there, mostly in the Utah wilderness.  But also I hitchhiked around the United States several times, lots of times, over those years. It's magical and something that I noticed about most everyone I’ve met on the road, living a similar lifestyle, they all have a certain mysticism.  There's a certain knowledge: what goes around comes around, and things come when you need them, and that doesn't always mean positive things, either trials and hardships or amazing blessings. It's quite magical.


Re-Facing Commercial Economy



Then, two years ago, I had to put this lifestyle on hold and help my parents out.   My dad passed away from cancer, and I'm still with my mom. These past couple years I've been pretty much stuck inside four walls.  I've gone inward a lot and it's giving me a chance to go over everything I've learned in the past decade-and-a-half before that. And this is what I would like to share tonight.


Something else I would like to point out.  I think it's good for us to walk away from things we feel we need to walk away from: things that bother us.   But something that I've learned being back is you can never really walk away permanently from anything until you've learned your lesson from it. I'm at the point now where I'm refacing living with a bureaucracy and everything else that comes from coming back home and being with my mom, and with my dad before he passed away, and with family and friends.  I think, though it’s good to walk away from things you need to walk away from, but they will come back and they'll come back amplified even more than before. But, in the meantime, you learn these tools to deal with them again. Our teachers keep coming back until we learn our lesson. That's where I'm at now.

My Blossoming



I'm calling this talk “The Physics and Spirituality of Gift Economy.”  I get really excited about this stuff. I believe that you might hear things here that you’ve never heard before. I feel that nothing comes from us individually.  I would say it all comes from God, comes from the whole. I imagine these these same concepts are arising everywhere else: they don't come for me. When the time is right they just might be blossoming [simultaneously in various parts of the world, like simultaneous blossoming on different parts of a tree], and this is kind of a blossoming that I'm experiencing that I would like to share with everyone.


Realizing the Giver is the Receiver & the Receiver is the Giver 4:38



When I was on the road, when I first gave up money, it was really difficult because I've always been in the position of the Giver (or so I thought).  That's kind of the way we are raised in a Christian culture: You want to be the giver (“It's more blessed to give than receive”). But I found now that I was very often dependant upon the gifts of others, dependant on other people's generosity and the gifts of the universe.  There's something very humbling about being on the receiving end.


I’d be hitchhiking and sometimes people would pick me up with ideas like, “well I'm I'm going to get my reward” and they would say “what goes around comes around.” Then there were other people who seemed to have no conception they were doing anything good.  It was simply something fun to pick up a hitchhiker. I kind of appreciate that more. It didn't feel like I was a charity case.


It was difficult for me to accept gifts in the beginning.  But then I thought back on the times when I was the giver, how I’d actually be angry if somebody was putting on a false humility, “no, you don't have to do that!”   It was like denying me the joy of giving. Put away the nonsense. People would ask me, “Are you hungry?” and I'm, like, starving, and I say, “No, I'm alright.” Then I realize, no, this is where I'm at.  I am dependant upon people's generosity. I have to get over this this pride. My false humility was pride, because I couldn't be honest. I finally got to the point where I'd say, “Yes, I'm hungry!” Then I could see their face beaming when I was honest.   I am denying their joy by being too proud to take gifts. After hitchhiking I don't know how many times people would thank me. Then I started realizing something. There is a principal here. It's the principle of all of life. This is going to be the main concept of this talk.

What is Credit - What is Debt? 7:03  

When your right hand is pulling out a thorn from your left foot, does the hand expect credit?  Does the foot feel debt? I feel that this is the principle of all of life, but we've skewed it to where we feel credit and debt.  We want credit when we do something good, and we feel debt when we’re in the receiving position. Both of those are a construct of our civilization, of our money system.  

Justice vs Grace 8:52





I’ve been realizing that you can boil down all the conflicts of religion and politics between two things:Justice and Grace, and each feels that it is morally superior. Justice and Grace.


Justice is deserved law, it entails Trade, Credit and Debt.  Usually those who hold to Justice envision an angry God.

Then there's Grace: unmerited favor, forgiveness, and gift economy.  Here's where we envision, like in the Christian tradition, the Madonna and child, Mary and Jesus.  Grace.


Politics



But think about. This is how our politics divides, our political parties.  We’ve got one that’s saying, “We have too much lenience. We have too much grace.  We need more justice.”

The other party is saying,  “We have too much justice. We need more grace.


And you’ll notice how characteristics of each faction come together.  In the justice faction:

The Justice faction: trade economy, credit and debt, greater military, greater prison system.   “We want more justice because too many people are getting by with too much.


Then the other side, the Grace faction:  “No, we need a more forgiving society. We need more giving freely.   We need to get away more from this credit and debt thing.


Religion



Something more I've noticed.  I’ve studied religions for many years.  This same pattern happens in religion.


Christianity



This is what happened in the Reformation.  At that time the Roman Catholic church was really into justice and commerce (even selling indulgences so parishioners could get into heaven), punishment, and inquisitions.

The Reformation was Martin Luther's big Epiphany.  


Salvation is by grace, not working for merit, not all this punishment, not constant beating yourself down to get into heaven. Look at the word Grace itself: grace, gratis, gracious and gratitude all come from the same root.


But this is not just discounting Justice.  I want to show how Grace and Justice are one single thing.


I’ve noticed the same pattern happens in other religions.  


Hinduism



This is the whole debate in the Bhagavad Gita, in Hinduism.  It’s a debate between grace and works, Grace and justice. There's karmic law, meaning if you work hard enough, you'll be reincarnated into a higher level.


But then there's what looks like a new idea: Grace.  With with devotion and putting your mind in the present you transcend the cycles of credit and debt or, in eastern philosophies, like reincarnation of karma.
 


Buddhism

Same thing with Buddhism.  The Buddha was reacting to a system of too much justice, too much emphasis on karmic cycles.  And we can transcend that. And that was the old Hinduism.



Religious Reformers: Reinstating Grace



And the Bhagavad Gita is also a reaction against the old Hinduism.  


And Martin Luther was a reaction against the old religion of what Christianity had become.

Jesus was a reaction against the hardcore legalism of Judaism and he was bringing out the concepts of Grace that were already there.

Now it's almost like Catholicism and protestantism have switch roles again.  In evangelical, fundamentalist protestantism there’s a hard emphasis on legalism and hardcore justice, pretty much for everybody else, but for ourselves, grace.  That’s the catch.


Everything is Already Paid For: Newton’s Third Law of Physics 13:04


Everything is already instantaneously paid for.  So how is this?


I was showing that with the body:  When you when you pick a thorn from your foot, who’s getting the credit and who's getting the debt?  
Let's look at physics.


You reap what you sow instantaneously.  Instantaneously! This is Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Physics:


To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction.  
The mutual actions of two bodies upon each other are always equal,
and directed to contrary parts.  


Perfect justice is the law of physics.  


There we go!  Perfect justice is already happening!  It is happening every single moment. Every single action that every particle in this universe takes, it gets an equal and opposite payment.  So, really, there's no such thing as debt! Everything is paid for right in the moment.


We look at this is physics, but I say that everything follows this law, including our social reactions, everything we do.  We know exactly when we're doing something harmful. When it harms myself it's going to harm someone else, because there's no separation between me and the rest of the universe.  Everything is completely interconnected.

And we're in a society where we believe that payment is delayed.  We’ve lost touch with knowing ourselves. But this is called conscience.  That's all this. This is our conscience. It's like when I do something and I know that it's not truthful, or it’s harmful, and I do it anyway.  I immediately suffer the consequences in my psyche. We all know this but we covered up. And it's a cover-up that's got a whole society playing games.


Delayed Payment: Lending It Forward


Now here's the second part: delayed payment.


What goes around comes around.  You see this in the cycles of nature.  Okay, you’ve got trees, plants. The deer eats the trees or the fruit or the grass.  Then the deer poops that out and it becomes food for organisms in the soil. like mushrooms.  Also he poops out seeds which might become more plants. A deer is inadvertently continuing the cycles.  He has no conception that he's paying anything back or forward. He doesn't have a sense of debt, like, “Oh, I owe something back to the the grass cuz I ate it.  There’s no conception of debt! That's a human construct that we've created, the concept of debt! And, then, the deer has no concept of credit! The deer doesn't think,  “Oh, I'm doing such good for the organisms in soil, and I'm doing such good I'm propagating trees and grass for life!”


And every every step of the way this happens.  It's a Pay It Forward system. And there's a delayed response, too: what goes around comes around, and the deer finally gets what it needs back again.   How does this happen? Is there an accountant sitting there thinking, “How’s this deer going to get paid back? Let's write this in a ledger. Let's set up a bank account.”  


The Big Banker in the Sky 17:04



See, the idea is that the big banker is in the sky, or is the universe.  And this is the original concept of God. Like the idea in her own tradition,  “Vengeance is mine I will repay says the Lord.” That's basically the law of physics speaking.  “Everything is paid for automatically. Don't worry about it. I will take care of credit and debt,” says the Universe.  “I will take care of vengeance and pay back, or whatever you've got in your minds. Don't worry about it.”


So this is the concept of faith.  

The Sun 17:48


Now look at the sun.   The sun is providing all of the energy for this.  All of it! The sun is what’s providing the energy to run this computer, in our bodies, in these lights.  


Think about it, what do we owe back to the Sun? Can you even pay back the sun if you wanted to? Think about that: it's complete grace.  It's unmerited favor. This is a concept in the teachings of Jesus. Do good, love your enemies do good to those who might do bad to you, because you will be like God who sends sun and rain on the just and on the unjust.  The sun doesn't sit down and sit with you and go through your life history and say, “well we need to find out if your approved for this this credit, for this social aid you're going to get.” No, the sun will equally shine on Adolf Hitler is it will Gandhi, or whoever, the just and the unjust.


The sun enables.  And we’re so afraid of enabling, like, “Well we don't want to enable bad behavior.”  The Sun is enabling Adolf Hitler and the Sun is enabling Jesus Christ, or whoever. The sun is enabling you.  The sun is enabling your abusive spouse or parents or whoever.

The sun, also, is running out like everything else.  There's nothing that’s permanent. The sun also follows cycles and on and on, into the galaxies.


Cycles of Life: Instantaneous Repayment + Delayed Repayment



23:00
So my question is, what if justice and grace are one thing?
 

I was just showing you the cycles of life.  This blue one is how we envision it. We see it as one process going forward, around and around, and eventually we get back what we need.  This is how we envision the world with our money minds. This is how we’ve been raised to think. And it's a partial truth. This [blue arrows going clockwise] is the dominant, possessive provider.  And the repayment is delayed. Since, in the natural cycles, it's pay-it-forward, where we don't see that there's a mutual exchange. This is the reason we create our monetary system. We can’t see the immediate repayment, so we think we need to set up the system where people pay us back for services.  We think, “this payback isn't the way nature set up. Nature's unfair, because this is all we see, going in a circle.

But here is what I realized on the road, accepting charity:

There's an equal and opposite circle going this way [red arrows going counter-clockwise].  See, in our system, we consider it the domesticated, recessive receiver. You'll notice there's an obvious male and female thing going on here.  The giver and the receiver. Look at the receptive. In our thinking we tend to look down on the receptive because we see only ourselves as the giver.  We don't recognize the equal and opposite gift that’s being given back to us by the receptive.


But this is more the model of reality right here [red and blue arrows together going in opposite directions].   Both are happening simultaneously, equal and opposite, in a circle. There are equal and opposite directions. Giving is happening in both directions, but we don't recognize it because one direction is recessive while the other is dominant.  There's an equal blessing going exactly the opposite way. You see this all over in nature.


25:45


You’ve got whirls going both directions!  But we only recognize one because it's dominant!  See, isn’t this beautiful:




That's the same principle.  So both of these laws are really one.  When your right hand pulls a thorn from your left foot does the hand expect credit?  Does the foot field debt? is the hand selfless or selfish?




Selfish or Selfless? 22:03


Like even those words, selfish and selfless, have no more meaning.  When we realized that there’s total oneness of everything you realize there's not a single particle in this universe that can exist independently by itself!  I am the accumulation of the whole universe and so are you! Like, where does “me” start and “you” end? Where's the line of division?

This is what we see right here.  There's something going around in the circle: the hand helps the foot and the hand will eventually receive a reward in the pay-it-forward system; yet, at the same time, both are receiving the same reward exactly simultaneously.  It’s one thing!


Rumi



27:25

Okay, I was just talking about sun. This is something that Rumi (a Sufi poet who lived in the 13th century) said, “Still after all this time the sun has never said to the earth, ‘you owe me.’  Look what happens with love like that! It lights up the sky!”


The gift economy of all the energy powering in your life.


We’ve somehow grabbed a hold of this energy and took it into possession.  Now we say, “You owe me. Now you have to pay your bills!”


The Air 23:35

The gift economy of all the air you breathe.

We don’t stop think about this.  The atmosphere is 100% communal, one breath, enabling both the just and the unjust.


Here is the Logical conclusion of privatized air.



Is this what we want our earth to look like?  This is privatized air! Is this the kind of world we want to create?
now we're going to get into the first law of thermodynamics


The First Law of Thermodynamics 24:00



“Energy cannot be created or destroyed.  It can only be changed from one form to another.

So, when you look at it this way, nothing is lost in the universe.  We're always so worried about loss of energy. But when our consciousness, our mind, is on the whole rather than on just ourselves, we realize that benefit to the Whole is benefit to me. Benefit to me is benefit to the Whole, including my loss of energy to another component in the universe.  It’s life and death! It's it's inevitable!



Money is Energy? 24:39

Now here is a concept that I'm always hearing. It's usually by kind of new agey types.  They’lll say, “money is energy.” But think about it. I’ve thought about this a lot.

This simply is not true.


Money is not energy.  Money is created and destroyed out of thin air.  Energy is not. Energy is neither created nor destroyed.  Money is a belief in the head. Money is a symbol of energy, money is not energy.  This is an idea I feel is destroying our earth.  It's our mistaking the symbol for the reality. Money is not a material substance.  Money is a belief in the head shared by two or more people. Money is not coins. Money Is not gold.  Money is not anything but a belief in the head. And we impose this belief on objects like coins or blips in a computer and in a bank.  


Money is a Creed, Religion is a Creed




Money is a creed.  Religion is a creed.  Why do I say money as a creed?  Money is credit. Look at the root meaning of credit: belief, trust.  Credibility, incredible. It means belief. That's what credit is. Credit is a belief in our heads.  It's not a physical substance.


Idolatry 25:14



We’ve got the golden calf here.  Idolatry is mistaking the symbol for what it symbolizes. I don't think there's anything wrong with the golden calf, until you think that it's the source of your power.  Idolatry sacrifices the actual to the symbol, the real to the illusion!


Burning the Idol 26:38


One time I was with some friends in Portland and they wanted to burn a $5 bill we found.  They were traveling money with me for a while. So I said, “okay.” We went downtown and we were standing next to a coffee stand, and we burned this $5 bill.


People were irate!  Somebody said, “You’re burning a latte there (it was about the price of a latte).  And I said, “No! Look, the latte is still there! The bill is burned. For years I lived off of the throwaway of society.  No one blinks an eye at the masses and masses and masses of food being thrown away every day. You could feed the whole world on what this country alone throws away.  That is real. That is actual things being sacrificed to a symbol. Why don’t we get angry at that? And the reason we're throwing away so much is for the symbol!


This is behind our wars.  This is behind the divisions in our politics.




“Why would somebody over fish?” I'm always hearing this argument.  We all need money because somebody's going to take more than they need and we need to control credit and debt. I say it's the opposite! Look at a moneyless society, like a hunting and gathering society.  Why don't they take more than they need? Why do they share everything? Why would they need these little tabulations to make sure everyone gets their fair share? Why don't they need that? Why is it that somebody would overfished.  It’s because... profit! I experimented with this. I went fishing for summer up in Alaska on a commercial fishing boat, but I decided I myself wouldn't take money doing that. But I saw what happened to fish. We no longer saw the fish is a living things!  They were dollars, and we wanted to get as many as we possibly could. The fish were being shipped to Japan, because there's high demand for fish in Japan. But, as Eisenstein points out, if you're just fishing for your village or your family, why on Earth would you take more than you need?  Think about it. It makes no sense! Do you want a rotting pile of fish?


"Any being that sparks economic interest is doomed. Eskimo curlews, passenger pigeons, puffins, teals, plovers, all these and more were exterminated or diminished by the insatiable lust for killing that our economics both rationalizes and rewards.
....
“[Without money incentive] You or I could catch all the fish we could ever eat, cut all the trees we could ever use, kill all the animals whose skins we could wear, and we still would not destroy the planet. Or rather, we could kill all that is given to us only so willingly as we give back. What the hell use would it be or me to overfish..? Why would I possibly take every fish? They would rot. It makes more sense to leave them so I can come back next week or next year, or never.
....
“If none of the...fish could be converted to cash, no sane people would ever want to kill so many, which is itself powerful support for the thesis that our economic system makes us crazy, or at least manifests prior insanity, or both."
--The Derrick, A Language Older Than Words


Every Creed is Based on At Least a Facsimile of Truth





Every creed (good or bad) is based on at least a facsimile of truth. the system we have created is an artifice.  The artificial and imitates the actual. Can we find the actual the artifice is based upon?


Investment, Repayment, & Interest Part of Nature’s Law? 31:01


A few years ago, all the sudden, a truth hit me.  There is a system in nature of investment repayment and even interest!  Like, life multiplies. You invested it and it multiplies. And I didn't want to think about this because it's like, in my mind I’m saying,  “All money bad! All interest bad!” Like all these economic principles: “they’re bad! Just get rid of them!” But they’re actually based on truths and we've imitated those truths, and now we believe the iis imitation is the truth. [It’s the same principle, idolatry, mistaking the reality for the symbol].  

This further demonstrates:


If credit is belief in the head, debt is also a belief in the head. 31:39



Look at this: all these countries in debt!  


The United States is trillions in debt.   Russia has one of the lowest debts, but it's still 151.3 billion dollars in debt.  It goes on and on. Total Earth debt, 233.3 trillion dollars! Who's the debt for? Who do we owe?  Everyone is owing everyone else, but you step back and you see this is a mass mental illness! Who are we in debt to?   When you erase money and look at goods and services, you see the truth! You see? We put so much stock in this belief.


Jaques Fresco and the Great Depression 32:15


There is the late Jaques Fresco, who started what’s called the Venus Project. I don't know a whole lot about it, but he envisions a moneyless world. He said he witnessed the Great Depression.  And he said, “back in the depression I realized nothing has changed physically, but, all of the sudden, we’re poor. The United States is still producing more than any country in the world. So what happened?  Numbers change. That's it.” There was the Dust Bowl. That was one thing that was physical. But even the Dust Bowl was created by over farming to pay bills to banks.

Basically, the problems in our society are that we are enslaved or beliefs.  And that's what I want to show with this credit and debt system.


Money is a Religion 33:22

Where does the word money come from?  I really want to show here, money is a religion.


The Goddess Juno Moneta



Our word money comes from the Roman goddess Moneta.  Juno Moneta was a Roman goddess, and at the very center of Rome is her Temple.  This Temple of Juno Moneta was the mint. Moneta is where words mint and money comes from. Moneta.  The goddess Moneta. Money. This was her Temple, and this temple you can see in ruins today. And there's a church also built upon these grounds, the Church of Santa Maria in Araceli in Rome.  This is the coin moneta.  This is the first money.  Well, there were coins before this, but this was the first time it was called money.  Monetary. Money. And it was considered sacred, so it was minted right in the temple.


39:40
Temples of Credit


Has anybody ever noticed how our banks and churches are looking more and more alike? And, look!  This looks a lot like Temple Moneta! And this church is kind of funny. It's actually called Red Bank Baptist Church.  This is a colonial bank right here is not a church.


Temples of Commerce


And look at our temples of Commerce.  Here’s our Mesa Mall in Grand Junction.  And these are megachurches. I don’t know where they are. I think one’s in Houston.


The God Mercury


Mercury.  The Roman god Mercury.  Our words Mercury, merchandise, and Market all are from the same root.  Mercury is the god of tradesmen and thieves. I feel like our dollar sign even has something to do with that.  


The Facsimile of Truth Behind the Creed of Capitalism



The god called the Invisible Hand of the Free Market 35:25



Now let’s look at this religion that I feel has got us gripped in this culture.  It’s the religious dogma of the Invisible Hand of the Free Market.


We have such high devotion to this, even in our self-proclaimed Christianity, that the Invisible Hand supersedes all.  We manipulate our religion to revolve around this.


Adam Smith first came up with this idea of the Invisible Hand of the free market.  He said,


“In spite of their natural selfishness and rapacity, business people are led by an invisible hand and, thus, without intending it, without knowing it, advance the interest of the society.”

The Facsimile of Truth behind Free Market Philosophy 36:06


This actually is based on some profound truths, and I’ve just been talking about them: what is self-interest and what's interest of the whole?  Like, what is the difference between the self and whole?
And these are ideas that Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman picked up on.  And this has gotten a grip on our culture, because it is based on a truth and I can see how this appeals to us!


Like we think, “If you just let business go it will morally smooth itself out and everything will be fine.”  Ideally that sounds great but there's no examples of it anywhere. I keep asking people where are examples of a free market anywhere in the world.  Can anybody really say there's ever a free market?


Gift Economy is the Only Laissez-Faire Economy 36:58





Gift economy is the only laissez-faire economy.  Laissez-faire means “Let It Be” in French.  This is this is the philosophy of “free market.” But I will dare say there's no such thing as a free market. “Free market” is an oxymoron.


A market is where you pay for things. It is where you own things.  What you own is not free.  That's the definition of not free: owned, under possession. Privatize means it's mine, it's not yours.  Privatize means not free; it's under dictatorship.  It is under your dictatorship! This is feudalism!   


This is what our ancestors work so hard hard to get away from, feudalism.   This is where we privatize everything until one person owns all the land and everybody has to be a serf on that land.  


The Irony of who worships the “Free” Market



And, of course, the one who owns, believes in the “free market.”  You'll notice that this is the most popular philosophy among the most wealthy in the world, like the Koch brothers.  They love free market philosophy. Because they don’t want control over themselves, but they won't control over everyone else!  They want to manipulate. And this doesn’t matter whether you’re liberal or conservative; people who own love this philosophy because they don't want control over themselves.  They don't want control by the people, they want some mysterious invisible to make it all morally correct.




Free market dogma is based upon the actual principle of free economy.  This is why it's appealing.


Privatization is Dictatorship



Again here's the logical conclusion of privatization.  39:22




What happens if we privatize all of the air, or all of the water, or all of the land.  This is what the Natives of this continent were trying to pound into our heads. “Why do you keep saying you're free when you want to privatize, you want to own everything?  And anybody who doesn't want to own you oppress them or kill them.”


 


This is the Roman Empire:




This has been happening actually since ancient Sumer.  It's not just here.




This is what the Native “Americans” kept trying to tell us:




Again, is the hand selfish or selfless?  39:38



What we want to do is we want to privatize the hand. So there's two different kinds of selfishness here.  What appeals to us is the idea that “okay, if I help myself I'm going to help the other.” And that’s true.  If I help the other I'm going to help myself. But we want to cut the hand off from the body altogether. And that's selfishness gone awry.  It’s the hand that wants to think “I'm independent of the body.”


The Facsimile of Truth of Our Religions 40:11

So what if we extend this to the whole universe?  




Universe means, from the Latin, unus versus.   One turning winding and one current. There's one and no other.  Is there any particle in this universe that can exist independently?  Isn't each particle, isn’t each person, the product of the whole universe?  


What if we re-imagine our idea of God to mean the whole rather than separate?  This is a core principle that’s lost in our modern theologies: the idea of one-ness with God or God within you.  


The Truth Behind “Hallelujah” 40:11

Praise

Now let’s look at the word praise.  


Praise means "to laud, commend, flatter," "to praise, value," from the Latin preciare, which means price!  (This is from the Online Etymological Dictionary.  You can find amazing things with it). Only in the English is it differentiated in form from the cognate, price.  So, in English, price and praise are two different words, but in other languages it’s the same word. “I give you price.” “I give you praise.”   Now think about this. We're getting somewhere.

Praise to the hand or praise to the whole?  


Does the hand expect praise?  Does it expect credit? Credit is praise, price!   Does the foot feel debt or guilt? Debt and guilt are the same thing.  Our civilization is running on credit and debt, praise and guilt. We love praise.  This is what Jesus talked about: you love the honor of people, you love the praise of people. [John 5:44]  And this is a concept I find in all the ancient religions. Same concept! So how about if we switch the word God for Whole: All credit to the Whole, all price to the Whole, all praise to the Whole.




Whole equals health equals holistic.  And our word holy comes from whole.  Be holy, be whole, be healthy, be holistic.  Hallelujah. That’s Hebrew. No body part can truly take credit, price, praise for anything because no body part exists apart from the Whole.  Just think of the whole universe as one body. Scientifically it is! There’s nothing that can exist separate! This is the delusion we’ve created for ourselves.  This is what the natives of this continent kept trying to pound into us. With all things and in all things we are relatives. The Lakota (Sioux) are saying that all the time time.


Lakota (Sioux)




Mitakuye oyasin.  That means “all my relatives.”  One atmosphere, one breath, one Spirit, one self.


We Are Animals 43:06



 


This is from the Bible.  Ecclesiastes. It’s amazing, you never hear this. It's kind of shied away from.  Solomon is the said writer of Ecclesiastes. It says,


“I said in my heart,Concerning the condition of the children of men, God tests them,                                                                                                       that they may see that they themselves are animals. For what happens to the children of men also happens to animals; one thing befalls them: as one dies, so dies the other.                      Surely, they all have one breath [רוּחַ ruwach]; man has no advantage over animals, for all is emptiness.”


Nearly every modern English translation adds like animals.  Like is in italics because it's added, because we can't handle that idea.  It goes against what we've been taught all our lives, especially in our faith.  They all have one breath. This word breath is ruwach [רוּחַ]  in Hebrew, and it means air, it means breath, and it means spirit.  Ruwach is the name of the Holy Spirit. It's Ruwach Qodesh, Holy Spirit.  


One breath.  

All life is one breath.  It’s scientific. We're all sharing one atmosphere.  Where does my breath start and yours end?


And this this concept is in Hinduism. It's called the Atman.  



The Sanskrit word Atman means breath.  But in English translations of Hindu scriptures it's usually translated as soul or self rather than breath, just like we translated it as Spirit, when in the original it means breath or air in Hebrew and in Greek.  The English word, spirit, itself means breath: like respire, or inspire, breath in. One atmosphere, one breath, one Spirit, one self.


Early Christians were communal, against privatization, renouncing self-credit. 45:17



Augustine




This’ll surprise a lot of Christians today and you’ll wonder if this is even the same religion as it was in the beginning.  Augustine said this, as well as, unanimously, the church leaders in early Christianity said the same things about the possessions and money and common property. Augustine I like because he's equally revered by both Protestants and Catholics.


Those who wish to make room for the Lord must find pleasure not in private, but in common property…. Redouble your charity. For, on account of the things which each one of us possesses singly, wars exist, hatreds, discords, strifes among human beings, tumults, dissensions, scandals, sins, injustices, and murders. On what account? On account of those things which each of us possesses singly. Do we fight over the things we possess in common? We inhale this air in common with others, we all see the sun in common. Blessed therefore are those who make room for the Lord…”


And if you look it up you see that all of the major early church leaders said the same things. Augustine, Tertullian, and Ambrose… the list goes on and on.   Every single one of them you can find quotes like this.


And the Romans even said this about the early Christians, that they didn't like possessions and they lived communally.  This was a main reason they were persecuted.




Other world religions testify to this same principle



Hinduism



Here’s this Atman thing again in Hinduism.  


“The person equipped with yoga looks on all with an impartial eye,                                      seeing Atman in all beings and all beings in Atman. He who sees Me everywhere                        and everything in Me never vanishes from Me nor I from him.”




Islam



The Quran:


“You were created as but One Soul.
And as One Soul                       
you shall be
raised to life.
God hears All
and sees All.”


If you give up your idea of God being a separate man in the sky, all the sudden you realize, well, of course, the whole is omnipresent.   How could it not be? The universe is omnipresent. The Whole is personal! My person is part of the universe, therefore the the universe is personal!  It's impersonal too! Everything you can think of that's in the universe is a characteristic of God, or the whole!


The Universal Religious Principle: Giving Up Possession and Self-Credit

Islam



The Quran says
“He who gives away his wealth….
and who gives no favor to anyone
for the sake of reward,
but only craving the face
of his Lord most High;
in the end he shall be well pleased!”


This concept is found over and over in the Quran, and then it's found over and over in the Bhagavad Gita:


Hinduism



 
“A person of yoga obtains
everlasting peace
by abandoning
the rewards of action.
The person ignorant of yoga,
selfishly attached to reward,
remains bound.”


Taoism



The Tao Te Ching, from China:


Lao Tzu says,
“Creating without claiming,
Doing without taking credit,
Guiding without interfering:
This is the Primal Virtue.”


These are just universal truths that people are seeing and proclaiming, what they see!

Buddhism:

“Enlightened beings are magnanimous givers,
bestowing whatever they have
with equanimity,
without regret,
without hoping for reward,
without seeking honor,
without coveting material benefits,
but only to rescue and safeguard
all living beings.”


There we go: the whole.  It's like when your mind is constantly on the Whole: is this good for the Whole?  If it's good for the Whole it's good for me, it's good for you.


The Golden Rule is Not a Commandment 49:01





The left hand does unto the right hand as it does unto itself!  Reality recognizes no self another. Now we're getting to the Golden Rule.



The Golden Rule.  This is another thing:  we think of the golden rule as a commandment, and it’s not!   All the sudden, I realized, it's a statement! Every single creature in the universe follows the Golden Rule!   It’s good to put away the idea that this is a commandment. Love cannot be commanded! If it can be commanded it’s not love!  


You always do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  


If I'm bad, if I’m mean, cruel, I do unto others as I would have them do unto me.  If I'm loving, I do unto them as I would have them do unto me. You always love your neighbor as you love yourself.  If you love yourself a lot, you love your neighbor a lot! If you love your neighbor a lot you love yourself a lot!



It's basically the law of physics.  Every particle in the universe follows this law, as all is the law of physics!  For every action there's an equal reaction.


I've even looked it up and he realized it's not imperative tense!   All these years, for centuries, we’ve thought this is imperative, that it's a command, but it's just a simple statement.


You love your neighbor as yourself.  We all do. This is a Zen Concept.

In the world of reality there is no self, there is no other than self.  


Martin Luther King said the same thing:


“I cannot reach fulfillment without thou.  The self cannot be self without other selves.  Self-concern without other-concern is like a tributary that has no outward flow to the ocean.”


Usury/Interest 51:00



This last part is about Usury, Interest.



Christianity Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Baha'i, Rastafarianism, and the Greeks sages all denounce charging interest.  [See https://sites.google.com/site/livingwithoutmoney/Home/what-the-world-s-religions-philosophers-say-about-the-crime-called-banking].Many ancients considered it a crime worse than murder to charge in interest. Imagine that.  

The Facsimile of Truth of Usury



However, even usery is also based upon life's basic laws.  This is what I was getting at before:


.


Physics, the second law of Thermodynamics: paying forward interest paid through time.  In an isolated system, entropy can only increase.



Usury, that's what it means: it’s use.  We use things. Things wear out with use.  So everything you do, you pay interest. And some somebody else gains interest.  One animal eats another one; one loses, one gains: paying and giving interest.


So what's the problem with interest? 51:57



Again we're getting back to the problem of mistaking the symbol for the reality.  We’re charging interest on symbols. We're having people who contribute nothing to society who are collecting symbols.  This is the way the banking system works. Let’s say that you come to me and I don't have any money, but I have access to a checkbook!  You say, “I want to borrow some money!” and I say, “Ok!” And I write you a check. It's a bad check. And you go and buy your house with it.  Did I lend you anything? Do you owe me anything? And then I say, “Pay me back with interest!” This is basically how banking works. That's the simplest way you can describe banking.  We’re borrowing bad checks! And then we’re made to feel like we need to pay back what was never lent to us in the first place! It's called Fiat money. But, in reality, I would say all money is Fiat money.  And I'm not saying it's necessarily evil. It's like words that are meaningless, that have become lies.


So we have interest.  Things are losing energy and gaining energy through the cycle, and it happens
in both directions.



The ancient origins of interest, money, fees, feudalism, slavery. 53:19



Now here's where the idea of Interest came from:

CATTLE


The word cattle comes from the French chattel.  It means property or wealth or money. And it's the same idea of fee or pecuniary, words which also come from the word for cattle.  You can see that, for our ancestors, probably their first money was cattle.  They stopped seeing them as cattle, as living beings. Now these are creatures of trade.  I can put my cattle on your land and my cattle will multiply and you get to keep some of those cattle and I get cattle.  It all increases, and that's interest. Yes, the word fee comes from pecu, root of pecuniary, meaning cattle. That's an Indo-European root, going way back when.  The Egyptians and the Saharans had the same ideas.


Fief, feudalism, also comes from fee, pecu, cattle. Feudalism.  Chattel. Pecuniary. Money, property, wealth.  Cattle. And this is what feudalism does. This is what privatization of people becomes: slavery.  We become slaves, we've become objects of money! It’s feudalism.




Banking, Judaism, Anti-Semitism, and the Bible. 54:51

Now this is where it gets complicated.  This is a tough subject, getting to the bottom of how the interest system has got a grip on the world.  I already showed you the map, the trillions of dollars in debt gripping the world.


Judaism Strongly Denounces Interest



Let’s focus on what Judaism says about charging interest. Judaism denounces it, thoroughly.



Prophet Ezekiel:
“If one has charged interest or taken increase-- shall he then live? He shall not live! If he has done any of these abominations, he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon him.”
David says the same thing in the Psalms.  Proverbs says the same. The Torah says the same.


The talmud and the midrash, which are commentaries on the Torah, emphasize this more.  They don't seem to make any loopholes or make any concessions to the horrors of charging interest on money:  


“One who lends money on usury cannot be regarded as reformed until he tear up his account-books and effect a complete reformation.” (Talmud, Tractate Sanhedrin II.)  

He who lives by usury in this world shall not live in the world to come.  --(Midrash, Exodus Rabba 31).


Yet, There’s a Loophole

This is something that I've been thinking about because this is a horror that's been behind anti-Semitism.  This is this is one of the driving factors of the Inquisitions, of Nazi Germany, and I see this cropping up today!



It's based on something that happened in history, an unholy agreement between Christendom and Judaism. There's what appears to be a loophole in the Torah.  


It says,
"Do not charge your brother interest on money, food, or anything that can earn interest.
You may charge a foreigner interest, but you must not charge your brother interest” (Deuteronomy 23:19-20)

This is something that I've avoided for years. I didn’t want to touch this.  This was a perfect set up in the Middle Ages. Jews were very persecuted they weren't allowed to own property.  They lived in ghettos, and the church considered them not worthy of owning property or conducting regular business in society.  




But Europe was having problems with their wars.  They needed to fund them, and it was illegal in Christian Europe to charge interest. It's very clear in Christianity and Judaism, in the Bible, as it is in other world religions: charging interest is a crime!  So it’s forbidden. But they wanted to borrow money to fund atrocities in Europe.

Now there's this little loophole here.   “Okay, Christians aren't allowed to lend money to each other… but we could go to the Jews.”  And the Jews agreed. This is only living they were allowed to make. They were living in poverty.  But they were given the handover of money. “You may charge a foreigner interest but you must not charge your brother interest.”  This set up a system of paranoia and atrocity in Europe and in the whole world that's going on today. Of course, the Jews became wealthy and Christian Europe became resentful because the increasing power of the Jews who originally were in the ghettos.



Charging interest was illegal not too long ago, a couple hundred years ago.   Now everybody does it. Now we have huge, powerful Christians in high places as bankers.  Even a lot of Muslims are doing it. It was illegal for Muslims, and they worked around it, too.  Every one of them finds a little loophole.


Getting to the bottom of this problem in the Hebrew Bible.
59:06

So I look up this Torah passage in the Hebrew.  I wanted to get to the bottom of this.



Hebrew does have an imperative tense.  But I noticed that this, just like “love your neighbor as yourself,” is not imperative tense!  The Ten Commandments are not commandments, they are statements, too! They are not imperative tense.  This is where we've made Grace into Law, we’ve made a description into a law.


This is what it literally says:  “You are not causing interest* to your brother; interest of money, interest of food, interest of anything lent on interest.
To a stranger you cause interest*, but to your brother you are not causing interest*…”     (Deuteronomy 23:19-20, literal translation)


I looked up the Hebrew verb tense.  The word for charging interest is teshich [תַשִּׁיךְ], which literally means “causing interest.”   It is not imperative. It is hiphel imperfect tense.  Hiphel tense indicates causative action.  Imperfect indicates action in progress. You are causing interest when you lend to a stranger, not to your familiar.  


Jesus refers to this interest “loophole” in the Torah! 1:00:22




All the sudden I realized Jesus is referring exactly to this Torah passage about charging interest when he states,


"But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, ...  But if you love those who love you, what credit [interest] is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them.  And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit [interest] is that to you? For even sinners do the same.  And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit [interest] is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back.  But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward [interest] will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.” (Luke 6:27, 32-35)


There we are: the just and the unjust.


In the other Gospels is another version of this theme: it talks about being like the sun and the rain, shedding light and rain on the just and on the unjust; you give expecting nothing in return, whether it's toward a good or bad person.

Interest & the Laws of Physics 1:07:47



Now we're back to the laws of physics:


Between two familiar, contacting bodies, there is equal and opposite reaction, equal exchange.
(There’s your neighbor, there’s your loved one, there’s your familiar)
For two strange bodies, separating by distance, there is unequal exchange, energy loss and energy gain between unfamiliar bodies.  (See, there’s that pay-it-forward thing. There’s the usury and loss of energy. You can see where these concepts are coming from).


In other words,
There is equal exchange between familiars.  
There is interest caused between distant strangers.
There is Interest caused between distant strangers.
This happens on the level of particles in physics and it happens socially!

The Universal Myth of Falling from Grace: Entering Credit & Debt

The World-wide Myth of Stealing Fire from Heaven 1:02:33

Then, something else I was noticing:  
There are myths and legends all over the world of what separates us from nature another creatures.  The most common one is stealing fire from heaven.




You find this all over the Americas, with the Native Americans.  They have some story of stealing fire from the gods or from heaven and bringing it to mankind.  It's an explanation of what separates us from animals. Like, what other creature uses fire?


But this is symbolic of stealing energy from heaven. The sun gives, expecting nothing in return. We take the energy and dole it out and sell it.  We've taken the principle of Heaven, or the Gods, and made it our own. This is possession. and I feel like this is the introduction of this monetary idea into our heads.


In Greek myth, Prometheus is the one who steals fire from heaven. Prometheus in Greek means forethought.  It's related to promise. A promise is a forethought. Latin promissum & promittere.  A forethought, a promise, a vow: it’s an entering into debt when you make a promise.  This is this something that's emphasized in both the Bible and the Quran: don't make promises, don't make vows, don't enter into debt.  Our whole society is built on promises and vows, and we're living in the future and the past, not in the present. To promise is to enter into debt.  


The Genesis Serpent Invading Eden 1:04:17



I looked at the Genesis story, which is different.  It's not about stealing fire but it’s the same principle!   Somebody's trying to explain what made us different from other creatures. Like, we wear clothes.  Humans even have pain in childbirth that's unlike any other creature because our heads, our brains, are so big.   We reap and sow the ground. That's also another idea of planting a seed in investment. We're trying to get the rewards of our own actions rather than pay it forward, working “by the sweat of our brows.”  So let’s look at this Eden story.


Serpent.   This one verse reveals it.  Eve says, in Genesis 3:13, “The serpent deceived me.” I looked up serpent. It's all a play on words.   Serpent in Hebrew is nahash [נחש]. Deceived is nâshâʼ [נָשָׁא].  So I looked up nasha.  Nasha means both “to deceive” and “to charge interest”!  Then I found that the Hebrew word for snakebite, nâshak [נָשַׁךְ], has a double meaning.  Nashak also means to charge interest!


There's a whole plan words here.  This is the same idea here: it's an entering into debt.   This is a concept found in the Lord’s Prayer, which anybody who’s grown up Christian is familiar with:  “forgive us our debts even as we forgive our debtors.” These words that we use for monetary language are in there: debt, forgiveness.  


Debt does not exist in the real universe. 1:05:50



But I'm saying, in the real universe, debt does not exist!   It's a belief in the head!


"You reap what you sow" or "You reap what others sow":  Which is true? 1:06:04



Then we have this lending-it-forward idea.  

We see both of these principles:  We see the idea that everything is paid for in the moment. And we also see that you reap what you sow, payment comes in the future.  But which is true?



Jesus says,
"For in this the saying is true: 'One sows and another reaps.' I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors." (John 4:37-38).


He gets this from the Old Testament, it says the same thing.   There's that pay-it-forward system. You take what you did not work for it and you give what you don't get back from.   This is the way the whole universe functions.


The conclusion: Falling & Returning to Grace 1:06:46  



Chuang Tzu, the famous Taoist sage, talks about the pivot.



This is what it boils down to.  It’s balance. We all know this when we've tried to ride a bike, or if you’re a tight-rope walker or a ballet dancer or just plain walking on our feet.  The more you try, the more imbalance you feel, the more likely you’re going to fall. When you give up trying, stop controlling credit and debt or positive and negative balance, then, all the sudden, it works out! To me, this is the same principle,


“but when you do your giving, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing so that your gift may be in secret.” this is Jesus’ statement in the Bible.   The Quran takes hold of this and goes deeper with it.


Lucifer the Arch-Angel's Fall from Heaven 1:07:53  

As soon as you're worried about what the other person is getting or not getting, credit and debt, you go out of balance.  See, I have a picture of the Ark of the Covenant here. This is symmetry. See, as long as these two angels, they’re called archangels, keep their focus on the center, not on each other, as long as their focus is on the Whole, they're in balance with each other.   But as soon as one looks up and worries about the other, and they become in competition, they fall from grace. This is the idea of the Archangel, Lucifer, falling from Heaven, becoming the devil. Suddenly it dawned on me this is what is going on here.

Chuang Tzu's principle of Tai Chi: the Laissez Faire of Nature. 1:08:37  



This is what Chuang Tzu is saying in The Pivot:


Keep your focus on the central pivot:
..“Yes” and “No” pursue each other
around the circumference.

The pivot of Tao passes through the center
where all affirmations and denials converge.

He who grasps the pivot is at the still-point
from which all movements and oppositions
can be seen in their right relationship.

Hence he sees the limitless possibilities
of both “Yes” and “No.”

Abandoning all thought of imposing a limit or taking sides,
he rests in direct intuition.


When I was on the road this guy joined me for a while he was teaching me some Tai Chi.  He kept saying, “don't let your right hand be aware of your left hand. Keep your focus on the chi, in the center.  Then it all balances out.


The same physics principles governing our bodies are the very principles governing economics. 1:09:56
















This is where our Fall From Grace comes from.  We see this every day in our lives, whenever we start trying to control, we can remember the laissez faire of nature, Let It Be.  Then the balance happens automatically. As soon as we try to control, like I'm worrying about what you're getting or you’re worrying about what I'm getting, we get out of balance.  If I’m doing this in my own body, worrying about it, trying to control, then I get out of balance. The more I try to balance the less balance I have.


This happens in economics.   The more PhD economists we have, the more Nations can't balance their budgets.   Just look around! What good is it doing this world? We’ll study for years, getting doctorates in economics.  Are we any more balanced?

What system should we replace the money system with? 1:10:26


Basically, people often ask me, “what kind of system do you suggest for replacing the money system?”


I don’t, really.


What I'm saying is it's already here!  It's been this way for zillions of years!  The gift economy and the perfect Justice is already here, except in our minds.


Forgiveness means seeing reality. 1:10:51



I would say this is what forgiveness is.  It's putting away these thoughts of credit and debt, giving up your debt, which is your belief.  When we do this, then all the sudden, we become balanced with each other, with our economics, and with our environment!

9 comments:

  1. Gracias! This is a wonderful video... Thank you so much!

    ReplyDelete
  2. The idea of delayed payment is also a construct. A story or belief. As if the things we do now are for something later. Now is always the only reward.

    This is just lovely. And it all happens whether we know it or not. “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you...?”

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! There is a delayed result of every action in the universe, but the idea that it is a "payment" is our delusional construct. This is something I would like to make clearer in future explanations, so thanks for clarifying this.

      Delete
  3. Thank you! I've read the commandments with 'thou canst not' in place of 'thou shall not', and wondered if there was more to that, in terms of the commandments describing truth and our incapacity to operate outside it.

    Perusing BrainPickings, I found Alan Watts on Money vs Wealth:

    https://www.brainpickings.org/2014/05/29/alan-watts-on-money-vs-wealth/

    Alan Watts on if money were no object:

    https://www.brainpickings.org/2012/10/10/if-money-were-no-object-alan-watts/

    And this 1960's school primer on how people use and earn money:

    https://www.brainpickings.org/2013/01/11/how-people-earn-and-use-money-1968/

    It is always a welcome blessing to visit your site and see updates. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  4. What you've uncovered in this article I found very thought provoking Daniel, thank you. But how do I live this way in practice? How does someone like me overcome the fear of hunger and homelessness if I were to give without expectation of reward? Will people not just exploit me and still others persecute me? Wouldn't living this way only result in my increased suffering? Wouldn't the world just trample me under foot? I see truth in what you say but I am afraid.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Everybody who has stepped out on faith in any worthwhile cause (not just giving up money) has had to grapple with these or similar questions. Rosa Parks refusing to sit at the back of the bus. Strikers refusing to work for unjust conditions & wages. Whistleblowers. Even individual acts like deciding to climb a rock wall or plunge off a cliff into cold water. We just can't get around the fact that if we want to live life we must take risk, step out of our comfort zone, face our fears. Or we can be comfortably numb, unconscious. And, believe me, I understand the times when I'm tire, too, and just want to be comfortably numb. Going to bed at night is okay, too, as long as you rest up to get out of bed the next morning, which is itself a risk, ready to face the world. Resting in a sleep state is important to gain strength for the morning.

      Delete
    2. Thanks Daniel, being comfortably numb as always eluded me; always. So that's not an option whatever I might have wished. In fact living itself has no appeal anymore, that's why any increased suffering bothers me, I am close to the edge as it is.

      I will satisfy myself that this is the way forward and step out in faith as you say. Either Jesus' assurances, "Give no thought..." are true or they are not, there's really only one way to know.

      You know my biggest fear about it is feeling a kind of resentment about working for nothing. I don't really enjoy the work I do, but it's what my neighbours need doing.

      Delete
  5. But in Nature there is not just giving and receiving (consensual) there is also taking and refusing (non-consensual).

    It's not all just fruit trees and foragers. It's also predators and prey.

    The prey does not want to get eaten — so he flees, he hides or he fights. The predator does not care that the prey does not want to get eaten — the wolf, the hawk, the shark — he just wants to eat.

    Even among plants — the fruit is the exceptional part of the whole — the plant does not want you to eat its leaves or flowers or stems or roots. Some plants even have deadly toxins and poisons for defense against being eaten.

    An apple tree wants animals to eat its fruit but it does not want to be chopped down (killed).

    So Nature is much more than just a gift economy, is it not? How do you factor that in to your philosophy? And to play devil's advocate: How do you explain why Nature has takers and taken, but humanity should not?

    ReplyDelete