Saturday, April 7, 2012

A Poem for Easter by Randall Stephens

Artwork by Grizzlybaer

save me

please save me
from chosen people
on a flat Earth
on a self-righteous path
blood-red carpeted
by the many books re-written
all singularly purporting
to have the right answer

save me
from hiding behind the veil
of civil liberty's shiny shield
springing attacks
on women's rights
on homo sexuality
and human progress

save me from myself

save me
from submitting myself
from calls to bow down
not to think
to question
about imaginary friends in our head
or monsters under my bed

save me
from taking human messages of hope
and book-binding them
shackled with fear

you've been with us
from the beginning
closing doors
in righteous cause
haven't you taken enough time

and hell is what you made of it
bloated and overfed
while heaven's a dream
of a world without gods
all their saviours long dead

save me from them
the only ones who condemn
sin me up a scoreboard
preying upon my soul

save me
the obstinate obsession
with tolling up transgression
save your breath
for the life-after-death
your ideas, at least, might get

their time will be through
when people finally realise
all we have ever
needed saving from

is hypocrites like you.

Randall Stephens in action

Friday, April 6, 2012

Easter Full Moon 2012: Happy Resurrection, Folks!

On the way home from KKB, 6 April 2012, 7:38PM (cellphone image)
Easter Full Moon  (Joseph Brimacombe)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Najib: Indisputably Corrupt & Absolutely Complicit

From Asia Sentinel...

Gun Begins to Smoke in Malaysian Sub Purchase

Money may have been funneled to UMNO officials through Hong Kong incorporated company

French investigating magistrates probing the US$1.2 billion sale of submarines to the Malaysian Defense Ministry are targeting, among other things, a Hong Kong-based company called Terasasi (Hong Kong) Ltd., whose principal officers are Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s close friend and the friend’s father.

Investigators believe that at least some of the €36 million funneled through Terasasi ended up in the pockets of Najib, who was Malaysia’s defense minister and deputy prime minister when the two Scorpene submarines were purchased from Thales International or Thint Asia. The state-owned defense giant DCN, later known as DCNS, and Thales established a joint company named Armaris to manufacture the submarines in 2002.

Scorpene submarine
The two Armaris Scorpenes, named for the first prime minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman, and Najib’s father, Tun Abdul Razak, are on duty in Malaysian waters.

Abdul Razak Baginda, the former head of a Malaysian think tank who was at the center of a 2006 investigation into the death of Mongolian translator and party girl Altantuya Shaariibuu, is listed as one of the two directors of the company, which was previously incorporated on June 28, 2002 as Kinabalu Advisory and Support Services Ltd according to the Hong Kong Companies Registry. The other director is Abdul Malim Baginda, Baginda’s father.

The Terasasi offices are located on the 19th floor of an office at 3 Lockhart Road in the Wan Chai district of Hong Kong. There is no indication in Hong Kong government records of what Terasasi’s business is. It is only listed as a “local company.” However, French authorities say Terasasi apparently received regular payments from Thint Asia. One payment was for €360,000 accompanied with a handwritten note saying “Razak wants it to be paid quickly.”

The magistrates have documents that show that the money was funneled from Thint Asia to Terasasi - €3 million of it when Terasasi was still domiciled in Malaysia, and €33 million after it was incorporated in Hong Kong. There is no indication at this point where the money went. French investigators, however, theorize that it was part of €146 million that may have been funneled to officials of the United Malays National Organization and Najib, who traveled with Abdul Razak Baginda several times to France as defense minister at the time the Malaysians purchased the submarines from DCNS.

On at least one trip, Altantuya, then Razak Baginda’s lover, accompanied him to France as a translator. He later jilted her, impelling her to come to Kuala Lumpur to demand US$500,000 from him. In a handwritten letter found after her death, she wrote that she was attempting to blackmail him, although she didn’t say why. Two of Najib’s bodyguards were convicted of shooting her in the head and blowing up her body with plastic explosives in September 2006, possibly to hide the fact that she was pregnant when she was killed.

[Read the whole sordid tale here.]

Tobias Lars ~ Reawakening the Heart


In a divided, schizoid, creation where the Male and the Female wage the 'war of the sexes' with each other…with the heart, caught in the middle, being hung on the cross to bleed, and in a very real danger of having the whole Earth experiment go down the drain.

Nymphs, Garden Devas, Rock Beings & Wind Dragons

Yes, so now here we are in a twisted creation of 'fallen' divided, schizoid, Jekyll & Hyde, un-wholy beings who are for the most part severely out of touch with their feelings, disconnected from their intuition, with not much joy or power left, addictively-obsessively trying to find nourishment in over eating, over thinking, over working, over exercising, over 'being positive,' over indulging in media, etc. We can't even hear or see the Devic Kingdoms anymore, the Nature Spirits. Can you feel or see the water nymphs, the garden devas, the rock beings, the wind dragons? No, the vast majority of us can't and when our kids do we tell them they're 'imaginary' and that they'd better stop doing it or we'll give them Ritalin or Prozac. We're almost completely out of touch with our Selves and rapidly killing our selves, the animals, plants and Mother Earth.

A while back, after a particularly powerful Activation Session for a client, I walked outside and felt the earth, the fruit trees, the wind as part of me. I felt like I was permeable, transparent to everything around me. I was pulling a garden hose towards an apple tree to water it. As I pulled I heard a loud 'STOP' inside my mind. I turned around and saw that a small 12" 'baby' apricot tree was in danger of being hurt by the hose I was pulling towards the apple tree. I turned momentarily to put the hose down. I saw in my minds eye, the third eye, the center for Christ Consciousness, a gnome, about 2 ft tall, lift the hose over the baby apricot tree and place it on the other side. I turned around and the hose had somehow 'miraculously' lifted itself over the little apricot tree and was laying now on the safe side where I could pull on the hose as much as I wanted and not have it push against the baby tree! Wow. I felt happy, giddy, full of joy.

I realized as I asked God, why couldn't I have seen the gnome-friend physically, that I wasn't quite ready to view them fully embodied. Being able to see and feel and allow other dimensions to fully manifest it seems that one needs to be fair-ly (thanks fairies!) pure in order to be able to fluidly move between dimensions. Later I tried to share this experience with some friends and I 'd watch their eyes glaze over somewhat. So it is, only those who are at the cusp themselves can feel and know the truth of these experiences.

The Findhorn Community in Scotland started by Eileen Caddy and two friends, started out by their talking with Pan, the God of the Earth, and growing vegetables in sand with practically no water. Today she's been honored by the Queen of England and there's a large eco-community and spiritual center established. There's a woman in Michigan at Lily Hill Farm, that allows people to come and visit and connect with Pan, the fairy kingdom, and devas. She met Pan physically in her grape orchard, the fairies would come visit her physically. She was a straight laced librarian, her husband an engineer when this started.

These worlds are all around us, if we are open. These worlds are part of the Original Plan for Earth, we can't just wipe them out by denying them, or suppressing them, or deciding mentally that they 'aren't real'. Feeling our emotions and cleaning-clearing our judgments-misunderstandings-past emotional stuck traumas will open our abilities to perceive again.

From the original judgment against the Emotional Body came the model that to reach 'enlightenment' one must successfully 'kill' the 'lower' emotions that we've labeled hatred, envy, greed, lust, anger, etc. Or more sophisticated: to 'rise above them,' to 'let them go' through 'non attachment' to have 'no judgment' on them.

Ex-communicating parts of our Souls

How do you think a child feels when its parents 'lets it go,' lets them loose as they are hanging from a ledge over the bottomless Abyss, we let our grip loose and let them fall into the Pit? "Goodbye sweetheart, it is for your own good," we say as they fall screaming in terror into the black, empty, cold, Void. How would they feel? This is 'loving'? That is what we have all done to those parts of ourselves that we've labeled 'wrong,' 'base,' 'lower'. We have literally abandoned parts, chunks, bits of our Souls because we labeled them 'bad', 'unspiritual,' 'reactive,' 'counterproductive,' 'lower,' etc. So we have 'let them go.' We have sent them to hell, banished them to the ends of the universe with our 'prayers' and 'exorcisms,' and much of our spirituality. Is it any wonder that some of these 'orphans,' these rejected aspects of our Larger Self are a bit pissed off? And that they don't exactly trust us anymore because almost all our healing modalities have at their root still a wanting to get rid of these pesky, irritating, 'wrong,' 'evil,' or again more sophisticated, 'unproductive' feelings?

Look around - most of the 'healing techniques' out there are about 'rising above,' 'letting go,' 'trans-cending' (sending into a trance!), becoming 'clear,' etc.

This is a basic delusion – misunderstanding, that there are 'bad', 'dirty' parts of ourselves that we can simply abandon, 'let go,' and somehow become enlightened. You can outrun them for a while, pretend you don't have them, but they are connected to us by a spiritual umbilical cord and they need to be 'healed' – wholed – reintegrated – welcomed home, taken back into you. Don't run from them, try not to think about them, stay busy to avoid, avoid, avoid, but turn and face them and transform them back into what they are meant to be. Soul Retrieval is a practice, if done correctly, that does this. All our 'designer diseases' today – cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Chronic Fatigue, etc., etc., are all diseases of the Soul, parts of our Souls that need to be welcomed back, transformed and healed.

[Read the rest here.]

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

In Celebration of Love’s Labors Lost (Part 2)

Madonna and Child by JMCD @ 1980 (oil on canvas)

When I was 16 someone suggested I apply for a student exchange program which would facilitate my visiting the U.S. for a whole year. I was invited for an interview in KL and on the panel were a few really nice human beings who, to this day, are still my friends – anyway, thanks to them, I left mummy and daddy for the first time in my life a year later and flew to the US of A where I encountered my first Jewish princesses and acquired a fatal attraction for neurotic women.

Long story short, I remained virgo intacta throughout my stay in the U.S. – although I did get some valuable exposure to the literary, cinematic and dramatic arts - along with learning how to unhook women’s bras by stealth while maintaining an innocuous conversation with others. I realized towards the end of the year that the kids who actually got laid were mostly the ones with access to wheels – and that’s why automobiles are such an important part of American culture.

Senior Prom: American rite of passage
At a party for exchange students I met a friendly girl named J from Luxembourg who took an instant shine to me and later invited me to her Senior Prom. We ended the year with a two-week bus tour of other states – and as it turned out, J and I were assigned to the same bus. There was a large contingent of Latinos and Hispanics on board who made a huge racket singing football songs and “La Bamba” (thereby permanently destroying the song for me). So J and I took refuge at the back of the bus and for a whole fortnight got into some heavy petting before we flew back to our respective homelands.

All this while I maintained a regular correspondence with three hometown girls: my first love and the two pretty sisters. The elder sister put a lot of herself into her chatty and flirtatious letters; the younger sister was a bit tongue-tied and her correspondence didn’t carry much emotional charge. My first love wrote only sporadically and wasn’t particularly expressive. So when I returned to Malaysia, it was pretty clear who had missed me the most - and who was therefore the most willing accomplice on the great adventure of adulthood.

We made plans to meet in Singapore. I found a cheap hotel and we checked in, trying our best to look nonchalant. I had packed a dozen condoms, just in case. Prior to my leaving for the U.S. we had logged a fair amount of snogging hours, stopping short of actual penetration. At last the moment of truth had arrived – we were ready to go all the way.

It’s sad that so many young people get traumatized by their first sexual initiation, simply because of ignorance and anxiety. 

I’ve read that in some Polynesian cultures, pubescents are gently, patiently and goodhumoredly inducted into adulthood by a sexually experienced relative - usually an aunt or uncle with shamanic energy who knows how to avoid unwanted pregnancies - to ensure that their youths blossom into maturity with a healthy attitude towards lovemaking. This was before prudish missionaries arrived and infected the natives with their Abrahamic erotophobia.

Much as we were both absolutely eager to consummate our passion, the act proved far more difficult than we had anticipated. I’ve since discovered the word vaginismus – a fancy name for the tight pussy syndrome a significant proportion of females suffer from, usually due to emotional and psychological issues surrounding the idea of losing one’s virginity. It’s a complex and fascinating topic but this is hardly the place to delve further into it.

After multiple unsuccessful attempts, we collapsed, exhausted, and fell asleep. A couple of hours later, while we were between sleep and wakefulness, our bodies were drawn together as though by natural magnetism – and, before I knew what was happening, I felt myself sliding sweetly, deliciously, deeply inside her. The triumph I felt surging through my entire being was indescribable. No way I was going to pull out now and rummage around in my bag for another condom. For both of us this was the very first time, and caution was thrown to the wind as we abandoned ourselves to wild sensations hitherto unknown.

Somewhere at the back of my mind I told myself to be careful not to ejaculate in her; but if you’ve ever tried to stop a cat from pouncing on an unwary sparrow by yelling at it… you know the cat will pounce anyhow. I came anyhow... with the full force of my 18-year-old virility… and even as I rested my glistening body on her still heaving womanhood, I knew we had both passed the point of no return – and that our lives would never again be the same.

About three weeks later, I got a letter from her, telling me her period was long overdue. I wrote back, suggesting she buy a pregnancy test kit from the nearest pharmacy, and to let me know the results by phone. She called me from a pay phone the next evening: “It’s positive,” she said. I suggested we meet over the weekend to discuss our options.

The first person I told was the girl next door – my first love. I walked over to her house and suggested we go for a long drive. She drove and I spoke. I told her something big had happened to seal our fate – I was about to become a teenage parent, and my original intention to marry her (which I hadn’t had the courage to inform her earlier) had to be cancelled or postponed indefinitely. I admitted that I had no idea what “love” was really about, but I suspected it was distinctly different from sex and romance. I felt certain I would always love her – but now it would have to be as a friend, because I was accepting full responsibility for my own actions.

“What are you going to do?” she asked.

“I don’t know yet,” I answered. “I’m going to meet her in a couple of days and then we’ll resolve what to do. But she’s carrying my child and we now have a genetic and karmic bond.”

The mother of my child and I resolved that we would accept parenthood and live together as a family; but I couldn’t handle the concept of marriage, because I strongly felt that our sex lives are our own private affair, and I didn’t see why we had to obtain a license from the government or seek society’s approval. Since this pregnancy had been unplanned, we agreed to give ourselves ten years; let the kid grow up, then we can decide whether to carry on as a nuclear family or part as good friends. To my relief, she immediately agreed. Guess we were both rebels in our own ways. A few years down the line we became a molecular family – but that’s another story yet untold.

One evening after a good meal, I was sipping coffee at the table with both my parents when I decided to let them in on my big secret: “I’ve got some news for you – you’re going to be grandparents again very soon!”

My mum wanted to know who the girl was. My dad just drummed his fingers on the table for a moment; then he stood up and asked me to help him move the double-bed into my room. Totally calm, ever so pragmatic, what a cool dad, one of a kind.

Our first daughter was delivered by the same midwife who had delivered me 19 years ago – and in the same house too. We opted for a home birth because my de facto wife didn’t want her mother to find out until after the child had arrived. So it was a very organic experience altogether. I had read somewhere that tribal women were given cannabis tea to ease their labor, so I brewed some and we both drank it. She wanted to listen to some music to take her mind off the contractions, so I put on Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. I sat beside her on the bed, caressing her forehead and holding her hand. When the baby girl emerged, I was surprised to see both her eyes were wide open, and she was frowning ever so slightly, perhaps annoyed that she had been evicted from her mama's cozy womb.

New life is always a miracle and brings infinite joy to everybody. My parents swiftly grew extremely fond of their granddaughter and, as it turned out, her arrival gave them a fresh focus and added zest.

[To be continued...]

Monday, April 2, 2012

In Celebration of Love’s Labors Lost (Part 3)

Akhunaton and Family

For the next few years I found myself living parallel lives. Externally, I was in a domestic partnership and had to claim my adulthood by getting a job, leaving the parental nest, and building a life with my own nuclear family. Internally, I grew increasingly fascinated by metaphysical conundrums, greedily devouring whatever literature came my way that might shed some light on life’s complexities and mysteries.

Courtesy of Creative Arena
It sounds trite but nevertheless true: even if each of us was born with an instruction manual to guide us through the various stages of life, only a few would bother reading it.

I’m not one of those few. I chose to view my life as an open-ended experiment, learning by trial-and-error, with only integrity as my soul compass. An honest scientist doesn’t doctor the statistics or tamper with empirical evidence, regardless of his or her own peculiar beliefs. If one is genuinely interested in living a true life, one cannot be governed by others’ opinions – although it’s always wise to pay attention to feedback, be it negative or positive.

Very early in life I saw through the abominable hypocrisy of what we loosely term “society” (I refer to it as the Cultural Matrix). I was appalled that loaded words like “bastard” or “blasphemy” remained in popular use long after the insidious influence of the Church had waned – even though their meanings are couched in and tainted by false piety and quasi-religious judgmentalism.

Illustration by Ben Heine
“KEEP OFF THE GRASS” and “NO TRESPASSING” signs are a symptom of sociopathology arising from an obsession with ownership and control. Why plant grass if your children aren’t allowed to lie on it and bask in the sun? Why construct a fence around a space where no artificial boundaries existed and then claim exclusive rights to it? Will the fence keep out the wind and airborne viruses, will it prevent the entry of alien ideas?

Such a distorted view of reality results from obeying a base impulse to Acquire and Protect – instead of following the nobler impulse to Attune and Harmonize. The former behavioral pattern leads to ego competition, exclusivity, and entropy (disintegration); the latter facilitates enlightened cooperation, inclusivity, and syntropy (reintegration).

Painting by Alex Grey

Frank Harris: "My Life & Loves"
To retrieve and record in writing every memory fragment of my life and loves would be a monumental task indeed – and, much as I’m occasionally tempted to emulate Frank Harris, who in 1922 shocked the literary world with his self-published memoirs, filled with graphic accounts of his sexual and political exploits, I shall save such a self-indulgent project for, as people say, my old age.

What prompted me to embark on this series of essays was the recent discovery of an amusing oil painting, long hidden behind a stack of framed artworks in the clutter of my study. It was a first attempt by my Luxembourgeois lover - yes, the one I met in New Jersey at age 17 and with whom I maintained a steady correspondence for 11 years. We met again in late 1979, in London, and she decided to relocate to Malaysia to share my life and times, for better or worse.

From her perspective, it must have been for the worse – because she decided a few years ago to stop communicating with me. At the time, I figured she was undergoing some sort of mid-life crisis – menopause, perhaps – and that she would get over it and begin to remember the good times we had, not just the sad moments.

Well, some are slow healers – and some, alas, choose to never recover from emotional wounds. I find it difficult to understand how anybody could possibly maintain a grudge for the rest of their lives – and yet a few apparently do.

No matter what terrible things people may have done to me – they need only apologize to achieve reconciliation, redemption in my eyes, and a gradual restoration of goodwill and friendship. I have experienced my share of outright rejection and scornful dismissal (a woman I was briefly besotted with actually called me “a perverted creep” which cut to my very core, but if she were to add me on facebook tomorrow, I would be overjoyed to renew contact with her, seeing as how she was once David Gilmour's squeeze).

The fact remains, once I open my heart to somebody, it stays open – even if the psychodynamics between us deteriorate beyond the limits of endurance and we are compelled to buffer the friendship with some space and time.

"Lustrous Love" by Alex Grey

At one point I began to suspect I was only in love with the idea of love – not anybody in particular. The problem is, in English, we only have ONE word to describe a complex and multifaceted dynamic spectrum of feelings and behaviors that has perplexed even the brightest minds and wisest souls for generations; and that four-letter word is LOVE.

"Kissing"  by Alex Grey
Very early in life I became aware of the biochemical basis of our animal responses to environmental stimuli. Primal drives like the desire for food and sex can be said to be universal – at least in terms of life-forms familiar to us. Humans may be the only biological species that has compartmentalized itself to the extent that we require a mystical experience (whether spontaneous or drug-induced) to remind us of our intricate interconnections with the entire electromagnetic spectrum which has generated the astounding variations on the magnificent theme we call Life.

Otherwise, in our anthropocentrism, we tend to view ourselves as separate from - and even superior to - other forms of life that constitute the planetary biosphere. Therein lies the basis of our cannibalistic, suicidal and psychopathological interactions with the earthly ecosystem that gives birth to and sustains us.

With a favorite smoldering siren
I have never been able to take monotheism, monogamy, or the notion of monopoly seriously. Even when I was dating delectable Barbie dolls and smoldering sirens who kept me on the edge of emotional and erotic exhaustion, I still saw other women as wondrous embodiments of my Twin Flame or Anima. Whenever a lover dumped me for another, the pain I felt was not so much because she had made her physical assets available to some other aspect of myself – but that her body was now unavailable to me.

The late great Robert A. Heinlein once came up with the concept of “pantheistic multiple-ego solipsism” - a phrase that perfectly describes my overall belief system.

I consider myself primarily a cosmomythologist. As such, I’m constantly on the lookout for heavy-duty metaphors that serve a greater understanding of our existence, elucidating the mythic context in which all phenomena occurs.

The Ouroboros in the seal
of the Theosophical Society
For many years I have been fascinated by the symbol of Ouroboros – the serpent devouring its own tail – which is generally acknowledged as a representation of “the cycle of life, death and rebirth, leading to immortality.”  

In effect, the Ouroboros symbolizes the perpetual cyclic renewal of life. The erotic subtext of eating, of course, is familiar to those who – according to an archaic law preserved in our statutes – deserve to be whipped and imprisoned for 20 years, simply for indulging in metaphorical and not merely literal coitus.

Some are cunning linguists and others jolly good fellators, or both. A privileged minority has evolved beyond sexual polarities and, like the Ouroboros, taken to self-cannibalism (more commonly known as autofellatio) – an acrobatic feat demanding fantastic contortionist skills.

Nokulunga the Pythoness: she's my facebook friend!

If asked to state clearly and emphatically what I ultimately desire to achieve, I’m sorely tempted to point at the Ouroboros - at the risk of being permanently labeled “a perverted creep.” The way I see it, being totally self-contained (and therefore no longer emotionally needy) in no way prevents me from simultaneously being eukaryotically erotic (another way of saying "polymorphously perverse") – in short, a fun guy to be around.

Tattoo Art by RPB
Primate yogi (pic courtesy of Forum Sains)