The Coming of Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge: The Chosen Rise

On April 29th. the second book of the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy will be launched on Amazon.

 

Little Did I Know

Two primary elements fed the creation of the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy. In college I took classes from Leslie White, the father of cultural anthropology. That elderly man took the stage and completely enraptured a large room full of college students. I was mesmerized as he linked our view of the world, creative understanding and cultural flow together. 

His view led me to be particularly intrigued by such things as mermaids. Do they really exist and, if not, why do we create the images and seem to believe in them? Something is stirring in us and the images are open for our projection of their meaning.

Years later I felt the need to bring mermaids to life.

The other element, which is central, is about empowered women. When I graduated from Duke University with my doctorate I took a job in the dawning community mental health movement. Suddenly there I was in the impoverished inner city of Baltimore. The man who hired me was Japanese-American and our multiracial staff served both black and white people in desperate lives of poverty. 

What was also different in my life was the women working in the program. It was the opening era of the Women’s Liberation Movement and they were definitely on board. The setting and the people opened my life in ways I could not have expected.

Effects That Would Not Be Stilled

The experience in Baltimore reframed my life and stayed with me. And for a reason or reasons I could not define, I found decades later a story was stirring. And so came strong dedicated mermaids. But they didn’t just show up to swim around in the sea. They had a purpose and that purpose had to do with a beautiful planet and the future of that planet and its inhabitants.

A World of Growing Crisis

I think part of what happened was that one age was ending and another opening. For a time threat appeared to have declined and the new age seemed more peaceful and promising. But that was not to endure. 

I thought I was writing a book but soon it became apparent that there was more than one book. Now there is a trilogy and perhaps more.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power – Book 1

The first book proved to be a place to introduce a larger cast of characters than I had expected and set the scene. At the center was an innocent woman who had a heritage she knew nothing about. And also what was opening was the revelation of an Earth Goddess (Gaia) who was determined that her planet would not be decimated. 

The people Gaia reserved to save the future were called Tethyans and serving with them were a dedicated class of warrior women called the Andromeda. The most immediate threat was the men called the Overlords who were devoted to self aggrandizement and greed. Does that sound familiar? But I created them in the books before our most recent events.

The Dawning

The second book leads us into the depths of conflict. The deception of central greedy characters is clear and what is being revealed goes beyond a simple response to crisis. Something fundamental is happening and there is a totally unexpected future becoming apparent. Come join in. It’s an intriguing ride of both reality and myth. I refer to the books as works of Magical Realism.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

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Are We Kidding Ourselves Pt. 3

 

The Power of What If

Somewhere on the edge of our reality is a place where we maintain a larger, more flexible context for our lives. Properly managed it enriches our lives and our future. It happens when we explore possibilities. The nice thing about possibilities is that we can seize them or dismiss them. Asking ”what if” is not a commitment but an exploration.

Choosing an Audience

Exploring within our own mind is perilous in one sense because our audience is of one and we may not get good guidance from ourselves. And so we may choose an audience. Certainly you’ve met people who are utterly uninterested in exploring and then there are others who may be so unfocused that they explore eternally and never make a choice.

And so we have to select an audience. That may actually be the fun part. As we test the waters and explore we meet new opportunities. The art is in knowing when to change the subject or move on.

Growing Up

Children love to explore, Well, at least most do. It is important because their future is open and the exploration helps them assess their strengths and weaknesses. Not to mention that they find out what is out there. Up to a point things had to be substantive and then we seek departures.

We see this process on the larger stage. You know about gravity don’t you? It holds you to the earth. End of story. Well not quite. How does it actually do that? You see the balloon tethered to the ground but exactly how are you tethered to the ground. The answer is “by gravity”. That actually explains nothing. I’d really like to see gravity and know how it works. We are looking into it.

Opportunities

I might have pursued the study of nuclear physics except for a terrible math professor. I see the same thing there as with gravity. There is so much we don’t understand. In the end I chose something else which offered “what if”. Psychology actually has a scientific side and the clinical side had the opportunity to explore that I wanted.

The trick in life is to maintain openings we may choose from time to time. Choosing too many openings is perilous but the art is to define our means and places to explore the what if or what might be. It is in that place that we have to “kid ourselves” because only then do we open a larger and often mystical world.

Isn’t that larger world what it is all about. It involves risk and uncertainty which we often deny we are seeking. But this process of “kidding ourselves” has led us to open a technological world, for example, and we can only speculate about where it is going to take us.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

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Are We Kidding Ourselves Pt. 2

Note: There were no posts last week because my wife and I took the opportunity to visit friends in Florida. One day we went to tour Palm Beach and the Mar A Lago area. Eye opening is my nice way of putting it. We were not able to even glimpse Trump’s operation because the security operations had walled it off since he was in town.

What we saw was a display of extreme wealth including harbors filled with huge yachts. It was a display of how health has hugely aggregated to the very few. And if one was willing to look, close by, were clear indications of poverty. It was a marked educational opportunity which I don’t want to have to see again.

The Unconscious and Spirits

The Defined and the Undefined

Day to day we proceed through our lives and take comfort in the belief that we know where we are going—at least for now. Of course we have to accept options in our existence. But there are some that are clearly defined and some undefined. We don’t usually trouble ourselves with sifting the difference and whether each option presented us is defined and undefined. That would be maddening. Instead we decide to simply accept a working definition of such things as reality and mental illness. How much more reassuring.

Other Options

But I have a problem. While I can lay weighing options aside like most people, I still want, from time to time, to open options and considerations. Two of my favorites are the unconscious and the existence of spirits. The first option is probably of more interest to the psychologist but people can often be engaged in discussions about spirits. 

The Unconscious 

There isn’t a lot of substance that can be concluded about the unconscious partly because it has no substance. It seems that it exists because we have all had the experience of seeing something materialize in our thoughts and that we have no idea why it suddenly came to us. So we accept it and don’t debate its origins. That’s probably the best tactic.

Spirits

Suddenly we tap into something which seems to intrigue people a lot more. Partly it seems it is because it taps into our religious inclinations and almost everyone has had religious experiences and has been raised in one tradition or another.

Where it gets dicey is when we talk not about an inspiring diety but get into what may be lurking around us. My belief in that regard is that we are not designed to experience spirits and do not have the sensory mechanisms. 

At the same time I find spirits intriguing because there is the possibility that our lack of experience may simply relate to the construction of our senses.

Diversity of Experience and Belief

What these things all come back to is the degree to which we seek diversity and inspiration in our lives. Some of us are so inclined, some less so. But in the end we come back to the authors realm. Even in the most clearly defined writing endeavor there are matters of choice and the presentation may be challenging and open creativity. 

Are we kidding ourselves is the question that comes to mind again. But at base we are talking about enriching our personal and collective environment. And isn’t that what we want in our lives.

And then again, don’t we have the need to explore possibilities? Human history has taken some amazing turns short term and long term. Often we are blindsided but it is these types of explorations which permit us to respond to challenges.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

The Origins and Sources of the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy – Pt. 1

Inspiration and the Author

Whatever Inspiration Means

As soon as I input the word inspiration, something inside of me asks, “what?” At once I understand. Inspiration is defined by Google as “the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative”. Does that help? Not for me. Like so many things it raises more questions than answers and the stimulation is not just mental.

A familiar image is of the author sitting before a typewriter (now a computer) waiting for something to stir him or her or give them direction. First off we have to wonder why the author came to sit there if there was no clear inclination of direction or clarity of substance.

Inspiration does seem to have an independent life of its own. Partly because books of fiction have roots inside ourselves. Nonfiction may be simply our need to give clarity to a “real” world subject. But fiction is another matter.

A Process Without Clear Delineation 

At the same time it just may be that we are wasting our time trying to define inspiration because we are led into a cave with a myriad turning points and possibilities. Sometimes it just may be that we have to accept that we are being stirred by something we cannot immediately define. It may be that where we begin may be nowhere near where we end up.

As such it may be best to see what we can do to focus an idea no matter how vague and see if an outline of some sort may emerge. As a psychologist I often come back to the idea that things are often not what they seem. What we call reality has anything but a hard edge and certainly inspiration may be fuzzy. We may have to simply take inspiration off its leash or find a way to do that. 

A Road or An Adventure

In fiction we are certainly looking for a way down a road, an adventure of some sort. The beginning is to simply start down the road. And the road we choose may be very different depending upon the stage of our lives. We may be searching a purpose for ourselves, looking to reveal something to others or even doing an assessment of where we have been and its meaning.

Finding a Beginning Point

Looking back I have to wonder where the beginning of this trilogy really was. There were just two general thoughts. One was that in my life I search for possibilities and that I’m entranced by mythology. The simple explanation was that I found myself focused on the meaning of mermaids. In their own way they are so prominent. As a story began to develop it became clear that women were central.

From there I found an outline was becoming insistent and steadily clarified as it grew and grew and grew. Since I am hardly at the beginning of my life I had to realize I was doing an assessment and was turning pages to think further about what may lie in our collective future. Together we can see where it leads and search out the substance of meanings.

What is inspiration for you?

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

My Valley of Spirits

 

Personal Alternatives

Sometimes our lives open paths and perceptions totally unexpected. In an earlier post I outlined by experience with what we concluded was a ghost in our first home in Maryland. The theme deepened.

Now I’m going to have to admit more about who I am because it relates to what I am writing in this blog and in the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy. My external persona suggests calm, quiet introversion and probably mostly a fairly focused reality. Such a persona exists, but there is another one.

Quiet Beauty

We lived in the first house in Maryland only a year and early on searched for a home to buy. Since my wife wanted a horse, it had to be in the country. It wasn’t long before we found what we were looking for. It was in a small valley far out in the country. Since we didn’t have an appointment we couldn’t see the house but drove around and looked at its setting. I was instantly engaged and said, “The house is going to have to be terrible for me not to want it.”

It turned out to be a darling two hundred year old stone house set against a hill and looking out to a small river or “creek” as it was called. It needed work, but that just meant we could make it our own. Inside the house I sensed nothing except a calm atmosphere both welcoming and uncomplicated. Outside proved to be another matter entirely.

The Mystery of Evening

Since we were in a valley, the sun set behind the hills and we descended slowly into the fading light of evening. Many evenings I was drawn to stand on the upstairs porch and enjoy the peace.

Once upon a time the house had been on the road from Baltimore to York, Pennsylvania. On the far hill there was a road hidden by trees leading to the ruined foundations of a covered bridge. The impression of the road could still be perceived in the lawn and then ran up the hill on the other side. At dusk, many evenings, as the mist rose from the river, I had a hazy perception of the occasional traveler in a buggy or on horseback.

One Saturday morning I rose and looked out to the river and had a perception of a union soldier on guard by the bridge. This would have been one of the routes to Gettysburg during the Civil War. I saw him one other time. Again, not clear, but a strong impression.

An Opening to the Depth of Life

What I came to feel was a depth of continuing life from the past leading into the future. The impressions in this landscape were various, unfocused but led me to an inescapable experience making me feel we only perceive a narrow slice of the life and types of life by which we are surrounded.

After all, our senses on a day to day basis serve us in specific ways and tell us little about what might surround us. I gained a new and deep perception on the property. It offered a richness of experience I found enchanting.

Then Came That Evening

As I said, the house itself was quiet, cozy and, I might even say, loving. But one evening I felt called outside again. Behind the house was a small hill. Rocky on the side toward the house, but even and inviting on top.

There was one place near the top that I had no reason to visit but it always held my attention. I felt something there. And then one evening I was drawn and climbed up the hill and sat down. I could feel a presence. No words were spoken. Gradually I had memories of when I was a child and my fear of darkness. While those fears declined as an adult, they remained with me. That night they vanished—forever.

The Lesson

My time in that valley was a rich experience. I came away with a greater depth of perception of the life of earth itself, of the fury there can be as in the day when a hurricane led to a rampage by the river. But above all it made me open my perceptions and the understanding that we are far from alone and may yet experience the diversity and depth of the life which surely surrounds us. These perceptions fed the story which evolved into the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy.

What life forms have you experienced?

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt