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Saturday, November 21, 2009

CHAPTER FORTY SEVEN. THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM.





Written by: Rick Staggenborg, MD on Oct 29, 2009 8:36 AM PDT


This essay is dedicated to the proprietress of the Tibet Nepal Galleria in Pasadena, California. She kindly took the time to explain to me that Hinduism is monotheistic, in that the Gods of the Hindu pantheon are all manifestations of Vishnu, the one God. This was a key piece of my understanding of the relationship between Hindu belief, other monotheistic religions, and Buddhism.

May we all have the wisdom of the avatar Ganesha, the Elephant God, who places and removes obstacles to our actions, in order to assure that Vishnu will remain whole in this Universe. Buddha taught that we are all part of the eternal One, connected by what Christians call the Holy Spirit. I pray that they are all right, and that we may someday achieve a true understanding of the wisdom revealed to Muhammed, who gave us the last chapter in the Book. May Jews, Christians and Muslims remember that we are all “People of the Book.”



Trying to grasp the problems with the American government, I am reminded of the story of the twelve blind monks trying to describe an elephant by touch alone. As you may imagine, as they were all feeling different parts of the elephant, they came away with radically different impressions of its nature. Only by effectively communicating could they bridge the gap between their individual perceptions of the reality of the elephant could they come closer to understanding its true Form. In a similar fashion, only by abandoning our preconceptions and approaching each other in a spirit of mutual respect can we hope to understand this beast we call our government. Then we are in a position to harm it, lest rogue elements use its brute force to strip us of our right to self-government.

Fortunately, by simply adopting this attitude and working together to understand the problems in our government, we will also hold the key to solving them, if we are truly a moral people who only want what is best for the country and everyone in it. Yes, that includes Dick Cheney, George W. Bush, Karl Rove and all their criminal co-conspirators. I am sorry if that disappoints anyone, but that is the only way to correct the course of the Ship of State in time to avoid a collision with the rapidly melting iceberg threatening us all. There is no time for seeking retribution and fighting amongst ourselves on deck, while the tiller spins wildly. There is a difference between acknowledging these crimes and perpetuating the cycle of blame and recriminations that has helped lead to the brink of catastrophe. If you are so blinded by your anger that you lack the reason to see that we must stand behind our President in order to push him in the right direction, then you are missing the point.

Some aspects of the problem are revealed in pieces by the corporate press, and our task is to make sure that they present enough information to put together the picture of the entire beast. This information is already available in standard sources in magazines, newspapers, radio and even on television. For those who understand how to use a computer to sift through the misinformation and find the truth, the task is even easier, and we must teach our young that it is worth the effort. Once we have a common image in mind of what America is and should be, it is easy to explain to those too busy, discouraged, confused, lazy or complacent to put the picture together on their own. Even those motivated by naked self interest alone will understand the need for concerted action to save America and the planet if we connect the dots for them.

From my study of what is wrong with the United States government, the elephant in the room that none of our politicians want to fully acknowledge is the problem of corporate personhood. If the American government is an elephant, then it has gone rogue. Those who understand that a Constitutional amendment to end the ability of corporations to buy our Congress know where to strike to fell it if need be. Rogues must be confronted and the threat they pose neutralized. The alternative is to continue to let international corporate terrorists control it by leading it by its nose, which always follows the money.




In the words of the New Seekers:




I'd like to build the world a home
and furnish it with love,
grow apple trees and honey bees
and snow white turtle doves.


I'd like to teach the world to sing
in perfect harmony.
I'd like to hold it in my arms
and keep it company.


I'd like to see the world for once
all standing hand in hand
and hear them echo through the hills
for peace throughout the land.


Thats the song I hear.
Let the world sing today
a song of peace
that echoes on
and never goes away.


I'd like to teach the world to sing
in perfect harmony.


I'd like to teach the world to sing
in perfect harmony.


I'd like to build the world a home
and funish it with love,
grow apple trees and honey bees
and snow white turtle doves.


I'd like to teach the world to sing
in perfect harmony.
I'd like to hold it in my arms
and keep it company.














Rick Staggenborg, MD


Founder, Soldiers For Peace International


Portland, Oregon

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