Entering the Real World

 

Opening Exploration

We don’t really have a collective ideology as much as we would like to believe it. We stand up for America the Beautiful but there are many places within America where it is not so beautiful. It may be found in poverty, racist strongholds and corporate greed among many. But let’s proceed from the place of ideological conflict and the fact of blessing and curse.

A Lesson

Naively we may enter adult life believing we have a firm ideological path. If our eyes remain open we find that the landscape is blurred. An attractive ideology may be undercut by the real orientation of an individual or a group. 

Deep in the inner city poverty of Baltimore my eyes were opened. Among others there were people who were naive and well intentioned, people who claimed liberal orientation but were thieves and conservatives who were dedicated only to self interest.

As such a scene opens it is essential to evaluate it and learn rather than walk away. That is our real world at all levels and it must be mastered throughout life.

The Lesson of Children

Let me turn a page with an illustration. Many people have children expecting that a “little me” will arrive. In a sense they are all little mes but the biggest lesson is that your child or children will simply be who arrives at your home. They must be loved, tended and guided. And from that experience the richness of your life evolves. In some ways your work life is no different. Take what comes, assess, shape and learn.

Conservative Versus Progressive

The view I came away with is that these opposed positions and ideologies are essential. A sound conservative preserving essential values is to be valued. And in the world at large there is inevitable change which currently is rapidly accelerating. That means that progressives cannot seize the moment such as it is and race forward without balance or decision. 

That is where the conservative comes in. When we come together and negotiate we bring together a functional future. 

Our Current World

But now my view is that true conservatives seem to have been forced into hiding. The people who call themselves conservatives now do not strike me as bringing firm and productive values. There has been a revolution in which corruption has taken hold along with a narrow, unproductive view of the world.

We have lost the valuable negotiations of the past and badly need them back. We need our devoted conservative sisters and brothers back. The field of the future is strewn with barriers and misapprehensions. We must see the potential and that we have to restore our ability to negotiate and balance. The future is rushing at us and I firmly believe that the transformation on the horizon can be devastating or utterly fulfilling. Much more later.

 

Coming Soon

Gaia’s Majesty-Transformation: Life Forces Revealed

(Book 3 of the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy)

The child of prophesy is coming of age.

Earth has descended into almost biblical chaos.

        Then comes an opening to a future never anticipated.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power – Book 1  (Click to See)

Avery’s life of dedication is enhanced when she meets the love of her life. They could not know that they shared a destiny and that a mission set long ago by our Earth Goddess was ordained.

      Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge: The Chosen Rise – Book 2   (Click to See)

 The Tethyan people of the sea have been joined by the Andromeda warrior women. They fight for the future of humankind. Then will come the Child of Prophesy.

Available now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon.Coming Soon

The Tragic Loss of Conservatism

 Coming Soon

Gaia’s Majesty-Transformation: Life Forces Revealed

(Book 3 of the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy)

The child of prophesy is coming of age.

Earth has descended into almost biblical chaos.

        Then comes an opening to a future never anticipated.

######

The Tragic Loss of Conservatism

It Is a Loss

I recall a time past when there were proud people of substantial values who held forth with the values of constructive conservatism. Yes, I used the word constructive. These were people to be admired because they contributed to stability, depth of commitment and the productive exchange of ideas in a world facing inevitable change.

In Opposition

The family I grew up in was firmly Republican. Late in the evening of the election of 1952 we sat up and cheered at the election of our hero Dwight Eisenhower. He had led us through the ruinous war against Naziism. His value of our country was firm and he stood before us in triumph and vision. He was the person who brought us the interstate highway system among other benefits.

Through it all he stood firmly for traditional values and against reckless change. As such he was a hero and benefactor.

My World Changed

In time my experiences in my life led me to embrace other viewpoints. My family was privileged and we toured the world beginning shortly after the end of World War II. It was breathtaking. I found myself over time seeking novelty and diversity. My brother went to Princeton and I went to the University of Michigan. It was time to head out further into our country. From there I went to North Carolina which was emerging from its racist and revolutionary past. Just one hundred years after the Civil War. It was a stunning lesson. From there I went to work in inner city poverty in Baltimore. Nothing could remain the same and I had to examine values and the future. I brought the experience of each corner with me. I never lost my rich past but turned to support progressive positions.

Two Definitions of Conservatism

Now let me turn to the world of conservatism. I found two definitions.

Commitment to traditional values and ideas with opposition to change or innovation.

The holding of political views that favor free enterprise, private ownership, and socially conservative ideas.

Who can be opposed to supporting traditional values in most instances. Exceptions are found of course as in the case of when racism is a traditional value in the culture. But generally stability is something to support. And in the second definition it is obvious that we support free enterprise and private ownership. It is when we come to socially conservative ideas that we may run into conflict.

In Progressive Ideology

In general, at least for me the issue is not in the ideology. It is a matter of how we take it forward and whether it is ill planned and ill considered. On the streets in the sixties and its time of revolution there were many things worthy of advancement. Among them was racial equality and the advent of the empowerment of women.

There were times when I found myself working against the radicals in the “progressive” mix. Change was clearly essential, but not necessarily revolution.

What Was to Come

It is not a clear and simple world out there. We fought our battles decade after decade and it was challenging. Change brought stunning openings of possibilities along with undesirable revelations. In the next post I’ll dig a little deeper into what I saw and where it has led us.

###

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power – Book 1  (Click to See) 

Avery’s life of dedication is enhanced when she meets the love of her life. They could not know that they shared a destiny and that a mission set long ago by our Earth Goddess was ordained.

      Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge: The Chosen Rise – Book 2   (Click to See)

The Tethyan people of the sea have been joined by the Andromeda warrior women. They fight for the future of humankind. Then will come the Child of Prophesy.

Available now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon.

How Are You America?

 

What Is Intelligence?

First lets address the issue of intelligence which in some ways relates to job skills. I say in some ways because job skills also reflect personality and interest patterns. One definition of intelligence is “the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills” – whatever that means. What it has often meant was the score received on an intelligence test.

The most commonly used tests when I was doing testing was the Wechsler which was available for adults and children. These tests had originally been developed because people wanted ways  to assess scholastic ability. Up to a point it served its purpose. Over time we also used it to assess if there were learning disabilities. Again, up to a point it helped.

Another matter is what kind of intelligence a person has. Some people are highly analytical, some suppositories of information and some can regurgitate material fed to them without any true understanding of its meaning. The latter are sometimes found among people who graduate from respected institutions but, to be blunt, seem stupid.

I think you get the point. It is highly variable and discussion cannot be simplistic if the aim is to design a remedial system.

In What We Call the Real World

The point here is to not do an in-depth presentation about intelligence. In fact, the point relates to the changes needed in our society to prepare people for the employment future. And there is evidence of that future changing rapidly.

The Wechsler tests were designed with a Verbal and a Performance section. Verbal suggests what the word means and relates most closely to academic abilities. But they also included Performance which generally seemed to reflect abilities of “working class” people. A plumber needs different abilities from an accountant.

The conventional, professional wisdom was that if the Verbal I.Q. was 20 points below the Performance I.Q. meant there was a learning disability. Well, not quite. I tested people from all walks of life and often found that discrepancy. But gradually I came to see something. The people with higher Performance skills often came from working class households. In fact what I was seeing was a pattern of talent not disability. Such a perception was very useful when job issues were considered.

The point is that we cannot approach the future of our workforce in a limited fashion.

Vocational Rehabilitation and Vocational Change

Vocational rehabilitation is at issue for a variety of reasons. People get injured in a variety of ways and need to be retrained so they can be productively employed. But we had to play some games. The counselors often came to me saying they needed a disability to develop a retraining program which they could pay for. One of the things that meant was that I had to define a disability for women who were getting a divorce and had not worked outside the home previously. 

Yikes! I knew exactly what they meant. Sometimes people suddenly have a change in their lives which needs to be addressed and they may not have the expertise or money to pay for it. So we went to work.

But, of course, there are other kinds of disabilities and needs for retraining as we are presently experiencing. Job categories disappear or shrink and we have to figure out what to do with the people who are no longer needed.

But something unfortunate happened. At one point when budgets were constricting. the rehab people had to work harder to justify what they were doing and they turned to the severely disabled. Sometimes that mean spending a lot of money on people who showed little if any promise for employment.

That is just one story. What we have to do is adapt to change in productive ways.

Designing for the Future

Our national dialogue in many matters is being shaped by partisan and idealogical conflict. What we really need in a society which is facing rapid change is an eyes wide open exploration of what the people in our society need. 

One of the things I saw was that the people with Performance abilities had an interesting set of abilities which might not need to be applied in plumbing or electrical work. In fact, if we broaden our scan we see that their abilities can be applied in information technology work in an office. But what we need to do now is to evaluate our viewpoint and begin to study how we can approach the needs of people to be employed in the postcapitalism world. We need vision, flexibility and new thinking.

###

Don’t Miss My Developing Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy

I refer to it as a work of magical realism. It is a series with a strong mythological element and a real world setting in this time when women are being empowered at last. It is a time of wonder and awakening for all of humankind.

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

Avery had dedicated her life to work for the future of third world women. Her life was enhanced when she met the man who became the love of her life. They could not know that they shared a destiny and that a mission set long ago by our Earth Goddess was to be revealed before 

them. 

Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge: The Chosen Rise – Book 2

These people, called Tethyans, live in cities in the sea but can morph into fully human form and come to land to form families. They join with the warrior women called the Andromeda to fight against the forces working to impair the future of humankind. Avery has found her birth name of Chantia and she and Beck find there is soon to be a child of seeming great import just as the world falls into terrible strife with millions already dead. 

Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge

Turning the Tide For Men

 

Now that we are having a movement to empower women it is also time to examine our view of the position of men. Let’s continue to broaden our focus. 

In that interest I happened to run across an important article in Bloomberg Businessweek by Claire Suddath. It is entitled “How To Make Better Men”. My immediate reaction was to appreciate the challenge. Certainly she gets attention with the title. 

Her Opening Statement

We are focused at once with her opening statement. “The #MeToo movement is slowly eliciting change in cultural institutions that help define masculinity.” She builds from there to offering a fresh perspective.

This is a much needed perspective. 

We are making a mistake by focusing exclusively on women and their empowerment. Yes, it is time, but we cannot forget that men need attention as well. And by that I mean it is time to examine the position men are in and where it comes from. 

A Refreshingly Broad Perspective

Claire Suddath offers an important opportunity. Increasing autonomy and respect for women has permitted women to come forward. Simply looking at power is not enough. And she is correct that simply saying the issue is merely a manifestation of the male culture is not entirely useful. She points out that our whole society supports the control and suppression of women. And when we step back we see the extensive nature of the issue. It clearly goes beyond men and their presumption of power.

Facing Complexity

If we accept the need to work on the larger issues involved, we may make the mistake of stopping with power. Yes, there are entrenched matters that may be legal and relate to power but, in the end, we have to face very personal issues for men such as self concept, self esteem and our opening to common ground socially.

Broader Issues

We may be trapped into stopping with considerations of accepting women into the job market and the broader political sphere. It was a hard fight for women to get the right to vote and now, decades later, we are seeing ramifications as we face other complexities. In truth we are only at the beginning stage. We are looking at a complex reevaluation of our societies, systems and how we relate to each other.

And deep down there are fundamental issues that are rarely discussed. We have to talk about our identities, interactions, goals and self esteem. The list is actually quite long.

Just Ahead

It isn’t necessary to be truly comprehensive as we open the stage for examination of and by men. We have a marvelous beginning as we build empowerment for women. But a major initial problem is that we may fail to look beyond their empowerment. There have to be major changes for men. It is a grand opportunity for universal enhancement. And men will find there are things in their world which bind and control them.

###

Don’t Miss My Developing Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy

I refer to it as a work of magical realism. It is a series with a strong mythological element and a real world setting in this time when women are being empowered at last. It is a time of wonder and awakening for all of humankind.

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

Avery had dedicated her life to work for the future of third world women. Her life was enhanced when she met the man who became the love of her life. They could not know that they shared a destiny and that a mission set long ago by our Earth Goddess was to be revealed before 

them. 

Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge: The Chosen Rise – Book 2

These people, called Tethyans, live in cities in the sea but can morph into fully human form and come to land to form families. They join with the warrior women called the Andromeda to fight against the forces working to impair the future of humankind. Avery has found her birth name of Chantia and she and Beck find there is soon to be a child of seeming great import just as the world falls into terrible strife with millions already dead. 

Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge

Thank You For Your Service

Have you ever had a stress reaction?

Have We Defined Stress Incorrectly?

Maybe our recent wars did not create an apocalypse for our nation, but we’re now facing some consequences of the wars. An apocalypse is ongoing for many of the residents of the Middle East but there is also significant distress among some people in our nation.

Some of that distress will be referred to as mental illness. I am not a huge fan of the medical model as it relates to mental and emotional functioning because I think there are often other more useful ways to look at some of the things that happen to us. We created the concept of mental health so that we could remove mental and emotional suffering from the hands of the church. It is no longer common to describe people as being possessed by the devil or demons. But sometimes viewing something as an illness is not useful either.

World War II Is Still With Us

Long before there was the currently popular Post Traumatic Stress Disorder we had war related stress problems but they were not diagnosed nor helped very effectively. We hear a great deal about PTSD currently. It almost sounds like it is a new problem.

I had a couple of awakenings in my practice over the years. In one instance a man came to see me about an ill-defined depression which had been nagging at him. We talked for several sessions until at last he said, “I think you need to meet my father”. His father had been a bomber pilot in World War II and had flown on both missions to destroy the Ploesti oil fields in Rumania. In each attack they lost 90% of the planes. His father had passed survivor guilt on to his son.

In another instance I was dealing with a young Jewish woman. Again, we were getting nowhere until she asked to bring her grandmother in. Her grandmother was a survivor of the Aushwitz concentration camp and had passed on this heritage within the family.

More Recent Events

It should not surprise anyone that we have similar problems for people who served in Vietnam and more recently in Afghanistan and Iraq and we will see what will be the outcome of the current troop withdrawals. The revelations have been ongoing. From time to time I have occasion to talk with veterans. In one instance when I told a man that reactions to this stress were essentially normal there were tears in his eyes. He was grateful and said, “I thought I was mentally ill.”

Normalizing the Experience

The military is beginning to work to drop the D from PTSD because calling it a disorder is serving as a bar to seeking help. People don’t like being called mentally ill. The fact is that the types of reactions we are seeing should be characterized as normal reactions to prolonged stress. Exactly how is a person to feel when they spend every day killing people and having people trying to kill them? Since we don’t have a draft we have sent people back for multiple tours of duty which is utterly irresponsible.

Thank You For Your Service

Yes, we should thank them for their service but we are too often not giving them service in return. I used an image of a homeless man on the street for this post because it exemplifies the service we are not giving. They should not be suffering. Too often the wait times for those seeking help is much too long and there should be no veterans homeless on the street.

We are failing to step up to our obligations. Politicians are threatening more war and few are really responding to and supporting the response to real need created by past wars. The fact is that there are understandable reactions to prolonged stress and they can be dealt with.

###

Don’t Miss My Developing Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy

I refer to it as a work of magical realism. It is a series with a strong mythological element and a real world setting in this time when women are being empowered at last. It is a time of wonder and awakening for all of humankind.

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

Avery had dedicated her life to work for the future of third world women. Her life was enhanced when she met the man who became the love of her life. They could not know that they shared a destiny and that a mission set long ago by our Earth Goddess was to be revealed before 

them. 

Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called

Gaia’s Majesty-Challenge: The Chosen Rise – Book 2

These people, called Tethyans, live in cities in the sea but can morph into fully human form and come to land to form families. They join with the warrior women called the Andromeda to fight against the forces working to impair the future of humankind. Avery has found her birth name of Chantia and she and Beck find there is soon to be a child of seeming great import just as the world falls into terrible strife with millions already dead. 

Available Now in Kindle and Paperback on Amazon