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Consciousness

An Answer Existential Questions: Science & Spirituality

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It seems that mankind has come up with a multitude of stories and rationalizations in order to explain the reason and purpose of our existence. The traditionally endorsed answers to existential questions tend to come from either religion or atheistic science. Religion generally dismisses a large number of scientific facts, while usually promoting a spiritual savior figure, guidelines, and an ultimate reward and punishment system. Science, on the other hand, studies no further than the material world, and “praises” coincidence, rather than acknowledging a consciousness or purpose behind the existence of life.

While humanity has largely divided itself into these two mindsets, the only alternative that seems to be left out of the loop is the merging of both science and spirituality. Could they be linked to one another, or are they bound to contradiction? Without referring to another dogmatic and deity-based theology, could an essence of consciousness possibly be involved in nature? Or is life nothing but a purposeless phenomenon in the midst of a universe of dead matter?

Let’s take a moment to reflect on the galaxies, the solar system, the ecosystem, the fauna, the flora, the cells, DNA, or any other ingenious mechanisms that make up our reality. Ever wondered why snowflakes show flawlessly geometrical patterns, or why plants know when to bloom and birds when to migrate? Ever wondered why you even have the conscious ability to witness such phenomena?

The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible.”  Albert Einstein

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It is obvious that science is simply a tool assisting us in understanding the already conscious mechanics of nature. We attempt to learn about it, yet it already existed in perfect harmony before we tried to. However, many scientists insist in describing such a rich, conscious and lively existence as a mere coincidence, with no intelligence involved in its inception. The only intelligence or consciousness that mainstream science seems to acknowledge is the intellect of our brain.

CONSCIOUSNESS BEFORE THE BRAIN, OR AFTER THE BRAIN?

To this day, we read in most science books that consciousness is merely an outcome of chemical processes in the brain, as if it emergedby coincidenceout of brain tissue. But does this claim make any sense?

If consciousness only exists in the brain, then how could “unconsciousness” create a brain that is not only conscious, but that has a capacity for complex subjective experience? Did superficial brain processes invent the brain itself, the body, the earth, and the entire universe? Why do conscious and experiencing beingssuch as useven exist in the first place? WHY is there consciousness?

Such questions are undoubtably a problem that the scientific community seems to ignoreperhaps to avoid a more metaphysical perspective.

 How is it that something as unconscious as the matter of the brain ever gives rise to something as immaterial as an experience? (…) Scientists find themselves in the strange position of being confronted daily by the indisputable fact of their own consciousness, yet with no means to account for it.Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

Physics, biology, chemistry or any other sciencedespite their success in analyzing the material worldsimply cannot explain the purpose of it all, or where it all really came from. They cannot account for the fundamental essence that makes us conscious individuals with a deep sense of self and of subjective experience. Our spark of beingthe one that makes us creators, thinkers and observers with such a rich and multifaceted inner worldis undeniably beyond the bounds of mainstream science.

In one way or another, they are trying to accommodate the anomaly of consciousness within an intrinsically materialist worldview. Like the mediaeval astronomers who kept on adding more and more epicycles, the underlying metaparadigm is seldom, if ever, questioned.” Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

Such observations are generally avoided in our society. After all, how relevant are “mysterious” existential questions in a system in which mindlessness,  material consumption and financial success are the primary focus? However, this book is not meant to abide with either preconceptions nor popular stances. We are not going to address the cause of a celebrity’s weight gain, recite bible verses, talk about politics and economics or inform you of sport statistics. We are going to delve into the realm of the unresolved.

In order to understand who we are and why we are here, we have to explore the deepest level of our reality. What are we made of? What is the very source of all that exists?

“My studies in mathematics and quantum physics explained how the entire material universe could have evolved from the simplest of the elements—hydrogen. Yet the most fascinating question for me had now become: How had hydrogen—a single electron orbiting a single proton—evolved into a system that could be aware of itself? How had the universe become conscious?”Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

REALITY BEYOND THE BRAIN

When basing our understanding on a three-dimensional experience, our automatic reasoning will surely be that reality is made up of matter. Not to mention that the word “real” is mostly tagged upon all that is perceivable through our 5 senses. However, quantum experiments and neurological studies have proven this impression to be inaccurate. Reality is actually quite different from the images filtered by the brain.

The mind may find it ridiculous to even consider that what it so clearly perceives is not exactly as it seems. But who is to say that the human brainwhich only serves as a decoder of abstract electrical signalsis the ultimate point of reference as to what is real and what is not?

Remember how electrical currents and ‘unseen waves’ were laughed at? The knowledge about man is still in its infancy.” – Albert Einstein.

As much as Cartesian minds may conquer, it is primordial to set aside the scientific ego and open ourselves up to a path of uncertainty. Because the first step to understanding the fundamental construct of reality is to accept that it is quite unlike our mind’s perception of what is “out there”. As the great physicist Erwin Schrödinger stated, Every mans world picture is and always remains a construct of his mind, and cannot be proved to have any other existence.”

There is indeed no evidence, which could prove that the reality we experience “out there” is not a mere reconstruction of information/codes received and filtered through our nervous system.

As a matter of fact, studies show that the world we perceive through our eyes is merely our brain’s interpretation ofelectrical signals derived from light.

Lightis scientifically referred to as electromagnetic radiation, or simply as energy. We often think of light as the brightness we can see with our eyes, yet visible light is but a very small portion within a vast range of light frequencies.

The light frequencies known to the scientific community have been categorized and labelled in what is called the electromagnetic spectrum.

Visible light is a range of frequencies that project our three-dimensional reality. As these light frequencies enter the eye, it triggers chemical reactions in the retina, which produce electro-chemical impulses. These travel along nerve fibers to the back of the brain, which is where vision is interpreted. The brain then analyses the data it receives, and recreates its own picture of what is “out there”. However, what is “out there” is quite unlike the coherent and conceivable world we experience through our senses.

Consider our experience of the colour green. In the physical, there is light of a certain frequency, but the light itself is not green. Nor are the electrical impulses that are transmitted from the eye to the brain. No colour exists there. The green we see is a quality appearing in the mind in response to this frequency of light. It exists only as a subjective experience in the mind.”  Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

Even though we have labelled certain light frequencies with names such as ultraviolet or gamma rays, they are all just light/energy. There are no definitive breaks or boundaries when it comes to light, but only a continuous range of energy, which can lower or raise its vibration speed. It is within this ocean of light, that our ingenious brain is able to translate a specific frequency range into what we call our visible “reality”.

THE SECRET OF THE QUANTUM WORLD

“What we have called matter is energy (light), whose vibration has been so lowered as to be perceptible to the senses. There is no matter.” – Albert Einstein

Everything is inherently made of light in different frequencies, and this does not exclude solidity. Just as light can manifest itself in a frequency range that is visible to our senses, it can also manifest itself in a frequency range that is touchable to our senses. It doesn’t mean that the objects we experience are solid by nature; it only means that our brain interprets them as solid.

Of course, the thought of matter being “immaterial” will seem farfetched to the mind, because its only reference point is the human senses. But let’s not forget that all of our senses are the product of an ingenious computer called “the brain”, whichagainis only a decoder of electrical signals. Our 5 senses will never give us an accurate picture of what is truly “out there”, because they can only experience what they are designed to experience. Without a brain programmed to transform light into electrical signals, and electrical signals into visible shapes, colors, sounds and sensations, there is only light of different frequencies and vibrations. As the great inventor, electrical engineer, and scientist Nikola Tesla stated, If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”.

Are not millions and millions of blobs of energy and light, photons and electrons? They make up this imaginary three-dimensional solid world, which does not exist at all according to Relativity or Quantum Mechanics. (…) The only realities we know are the ones our brain manufactures. A brain receives millions of signals every minute. And we organize them into holograms which we project outside ourselves and call it Reality’” – Dr. Robert Anton Wilson

As the quote above states, “blobs of energy” or “light” are terms that would best describe the smallest, most elementary particles that make up the material world. Most linear minds would hope to find proof of their solidity, but the truth turns out to be more puzzling than the easy to grasp concept of size and mass.

We all know that matter is composed of atoms. Yet studies now reveal that each atom is composed of 99.9999999 % empty space. They are nothing like the “solid balls” that science has used to describe them for two thousand years. The remaining 0.0000001% of the atom represents the elementary particles that are hundreds of thousands times smaller. This means that if we enlarge an atom to the size of a football stadium, the nucleus of the atom would only be as large as a tiny grain of rice, and so are the electrons orbiting around it. As the early twentieth-century British physicist Sir Arthur Eddington stated, “Matter is mostly ghostly empty space.”.

The discovery that matter is mostly immaterial seemed too uncomfortable for the minds of physicists to grasp. Therefore, in an attempt to at least ascribe solid properties and measurements to the elementary particles of matter, physicists have encountered another so-called “anomaly” within the quantum world. Experiments show that elementary particles can behave and look like particles, but are not solid in essence. They are truly and inherently waves of potential existence.

With the advent of quantum theory, it was found that even these minute subatomic particles were themselves far from solid. In fact, they are not much like matter at allat least nothing like matter as we know it. They can’t be pinned down and measured precisely. They are more like fuzzy clouds of potential existence, with no definite location. Much of the time they seem more like waves than particles. Whatever matter is, it has little, if any, substance to it.”  Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

The reason for this abstract description is precisely because what appears to be elementary “particles” behave in a most abstract manner. They are inherently spread out as waves of lightwithout a defined and measurable substance or location like we would expect “solid” particles to have. However, this light carries all potentialities for manifestation. In other words, light has the potential to manifest itself in many ways, which would explain whydespite there being only lightwe experience a world of many particles, textures, colors, sounds, and so forth.

This isnt the world of electrons. Its the world of potential electrons. John Hagelin, Particle Physicist, Ph. D.

According to quantum studies such as the double slit experiment, that which defines what potentiality the wave will “choose”, is the presence of a conscious and observing mind. Physicists can now say for a fact that the very presence of a conscious mind observing and intending to define or measure a particle, consequently determines the aspect and location in which it takes form. The only question our science cannot answer is WHY light defines itself as a particle the moment we observe and define it. This quantum anomaly is scientifically known as the measurement problem.

The measurement problem is this: an atom only appears in a particular place if you measure it. In other words, an atom is spread out all over the place until a conscious observer decides to look at it.” – Prof. Jim Al-Khalili

And anytime we attempt to look at particles beyond a certain level, the very act of observation changes (their) lanes.” – Dr. Dean Radin

To put it simply, the fundamental nature of reality is originally “open” to all potential outcomes, yet our very consciousness is intimately hooked to the one that shall be experienced. As the physicist Dr. York Dobyns stated, Without us, (conscious beings) there would just be this expanding superposition of possibilities with nothing definite ever actually happening.”

MYSTERIOUS LIGHT

Any exchange of energy between any two atoms in the universe involves the exchange of photons. Every interaction in the material world is mediated by light. In this way, light penetrates and interconnects the entire cosmos. (…) Although all we ever see is light, paradoxically, we never know light directly. The light that strikes the eye is known only through the energy it releases. This energy is translated into a visual image in the mind, and that image seems to be composed of lightbut that light is a quality of mind. We never know the light itself.  Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

For the rest of my life I want to reflect on what light is. Albert Einstein

Days could be spent studying the behavior of the quantum world, and more problems and anomalies could be discussed. Yet these so-called quantum anomalies all involve the dimensions and behaviors of light.

Modern science is not in the business of asking what this light, this energy, this empty space or this wave of potentiality isall terms aimed at describing the fundamental construct of our reality. It aims at describing the way things work, but barely ever questions what or why it is this way.

Some claim that answering these questions is a job for philosophers, not physicists. However, everyone agrees that quantum theory works, but most of those who study it are not quite sure what it means.

If you are seeking the Infinite, what instruments do you have to seek the Infinite? Only sense organs, isn’t it? So through your sense organs, if you are seeking the Infinite, it is like wanting to go to moon with a bullock cart. Isn’t it so? That is the plight of humanity, right now: with a limited perception, they are trying to grasp that is which is beyond.” – Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev

SUMMARY

We have learned that

1.   The universe was already conscious and intelligent before humanity’s attempt to study it.

2.   The reality we perceive through our senses is the result of the brain acting as a decoder of light frequencies.

3.   Light is the all-encompassing source of this intelligent reality–permeating and interconnecting everything in existence.

4.   Light acts as a wave of many potentialities, while the mind defines the potential.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

It is simple really. The universe is conscious and intelligent, because its essence is CONSCIOUSNESS–not matter. Light is consciousness, and consciousness is the singular force that projects this entire reality in many levels of frequency. Below is a flowchart that demonstrates how quantum physicists have been led to this truth.

“The tighter physics have tried to grasp on to physical reality, to understand what it’s really made of, what are the core building blocks of life at the basis of it all… life, the universe, slips through your fingers. And you come up with something that’s increasingly abstract, to come to the realm of pure abstraction. And that’s what the unified field is; pure abstract potential. Pure abstract being. Pure abstract self-aware consciousness, which rises in waves of vibration to give rise to the particles, the people, everything we see in the vast universe.” – John Hagelin, Particle Physicist, Ph. D.

The truth is obvious. However, dogmawhether spiritual or scientificseem to have clouded a truth that does not require adversity, with the desire to prove ourselves “right” and others “wrong”. But once we set aside our egos and allow our consciousness to expand beyond the beliefs we cling to, we will begin to wonder how we could have missed the obvious.

The parallels between the light of physics and the light of consciousness do not contradict each other, for they are each other. Both are immaterial. Both cannot be pinned down through senses or technological devices. And both are the fundamental construct of our reality, permeating everything in existence. From a scientific perspective, light is the source of everything we experience. And from a spiritual perspective, consciousness is the source of everything we experience. Both perspectives lead to the same truth: Light is consciousness. Light is all there is. Light is “God”.

“I am the light. And so are you. And so is every sentient being in the universe.” – Peter Russell (M.A., D.C.S., F.S.P.)

“Matter is Energy. Energy is Light. We are all Light Beings.” – Albert Einstein

This singular consciousness has divided itself into many fragments of light, which are what we call souls. The soul is who we truly are. It simply embodies a projected physicality designed to decipher this “light show” into an experiential playground. Why? Simply so that our consciousness could experience its creation in many ways, shapes and forms, allowing itself to play, become experientially rich, and evolve towards the complete remembrance of itself.

“The knower and the known are one. Simple people imagine that they should see God as if he stood there and they here. This is not so. (…) The eye with which I see God is the same eye with which God sees me. My eye and God’s eye is one eye, and one sight, and one knowledge, and one Love.” – Meister Eckhart

“We are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively.” – Bill Hicks

And why do our minds define the potentialities in which life takes it course? Because as consciousnessthe creatorwe are collectively co-creating our reality, moment by moment.

‎”You are never who you were in the last moment. You are continually creating yourself from the field of infinite possibilities. You are, in every moment, born again. And so is everyone else. (…) The time has come for  you to look at things in a new way. This is the moment of your rebirth, as an individual and a society. We are all One. Everything we are doing, we are doing in concert with each other.” – Neale Donald Walsch

This is an excerpt from a book that I have been working on for quite some time and hope to release in the near future. Hope you enjoy!

 

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Consciousness

How We Can Become Better Listeners For Each Other

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    We all like to have great listeners on our side, especially among the people closest to us. However, many of us are not the great listeners that we want others to be for us.

  • Reflect On:

    Is becoming a great listener based simply on learning good skills and tactics, or is there something more involved?

In order to foster truly deep, meaningful relationships with others, whether they be professional or personal, at least half the battle is knowing and respecting how the other person wants to be heard. Likely they are not so different from you in this regard.

As a life coach, I have come to learn that there is an art and science to listening, one that needs to be cultivated through practice and conscious effort. In my book Parables for the New Conversation, several parables are devoted to showing how problems are created between people not so much by the message that is sent, but how it is received. The receiver of the message is really in control of whether or not the conversation will turn out to be fruitful or not.

Active Listening

Assuming that we have a desire to listen and we want our partner to feel that they have been heard, what might our behavior look like?

Well, let’s start with the basics. Most people would agree that not talking when the other person is speaking is essential. If we can add in timely facial expressions and verbal sounds (“Mmm-hmm”s), this may certainly help make our partner feel that he or she is being heard. And then there is that quintessential sign that we are actively listening–if we are able to remember and repeat what the other person has said, in some form like, “What I’m hearing you say is…”.

These principles may represent some of the science of listening, but not so much the art. What I saw a lot of during my life coaching certification, especially when doing coaching role-play with other students, was the formulaic application of the principles of active listening that sometimes had a hollowness and predictability to it. Of course this is understandable, especially when people are starting off trying to do what they are not accustomed to doing. While these fundamentals are important first steps, we need to understand more the ‘why’ of active listening processes, and then get beyond formulas in order to be felt to be a great listener by others.

Understanding What People Want

If you think about someone who you consider a great listener, or think back to a conversation within which you felt you were really heard, what was that listener providing? Were they merely listening, or were they actually helping you get more clear and articulate about what you were thinking and feeling inside? Did they accept everything at face value, or did they subtly challenge you? Did you find yourself actually feeling more relaxed and confident about what you were saying?

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In this Harvard Business Review study, data from 3,492 participants was distilled into four main points that people felt were characteristics of good listening:

  • Good listening is much more than being silent while the other person talks. To the contrary, people perceive the best listeners to be those who periodically ask questions that promote discovery and insight. These questions gently challenge old assumptions, but do so in a constructive way. Sitting there silently nodding does not provide sure evidence that a person is listening, but asking a good question tells the speaker the listener has not only heard what was said, but that they comprehended it well enough to  want additional information. Good listening was consistently seen as a two-way dialog, rather than a one-way “speaker versus hearer” interaction. The best conversations were active.
  • Good listening included interactions that build a person’s self-esteem. The best listeners made the conversation a positive experience for the other party, which doesn’t happen when the listener is passive (or, for that matter, critical!). Good listeners made the other person feel supported and conveyed confidence in them. Good listening was characterized by the creation of a safe environment in which issues and differences could be discussed openly.
  • Good listening was seen as a cooperative conversation. In these interactions, feedback flowed smoothly in both directions with neither party becoming defensive about comments the other made. By contrast, poor listeners were seen as competitive — as listening only to identify errors in reasoning or logic, using their silence as a chance to prepare their next response. That might make you an excellent debater, but it doesn’t make you a good listener. Good listeners may challenge assumptions and disagree, but the person being listened to feels the listener is trying to help, not wanting to win an argument.
  • Good listeners tended to make suggestions. Good listening invariably included some feedback provided in a way others would accept and that opened up alternative paths to consider. This finding somewhat surprised us, since it’s not uncommon to hear complaints that “So-and-so didn’t listen, he just jumped in and tried to solve the problem.” Perhaps what the data is telling us is that making suggestions is not itself the problem; it may be the skill with which those suggestions are made. Another possibility is that we’re more likely to accept suggestions from people we already think are good listeners. (Someone who is silent for the whole conversation and then jumps in with a suggestion may not be seen as credible. Someone who seems combative or critical and then tries to give advice may not be seen as trustworthy.)

The ‘Art’ Of Listening

Listening only elevates into an art when you are no longer just doing it by rote, based on a set of principles, but when you truly attempt to connect to the other person, and ground your conversations in respect, care, and, let’s say it–love. The insights from the study made above need to be more than just steps to follow, they need to act as pointers towards the disposition you have to be willing to embrace within yourself to become a great listener. And the easiest way to cultivate this is to actually care what the person is saying!

But beyond caring about what they are saying, caring about why they are saying it is even more important. If you can align at a deep level with why a person is communicating with you, and what, at a deeper level, they are trying to get from the conversation, that is when they will really start to feel listened to.

For some people this is natural, and is probably why they are pretty good listeners to begin with. But many of us are not quite as intrinsically motivated to care about the other person or what they are saying. Still, if you want to be a good listener and experience connecting with people in a more satisfying way that goes beyond just learning the ‘highly effective habits’ of good listeners, then care is pretty fundamental to the process. If this seems daunting, here are a few entry-points into becoming a great listener for real:

Curiosity. When we speak to others our minds can revert to trying to gain control, seeking satisfaction from speaking out under the assumption we know what the other person is trying to say. This is especially true with a spouse or close friend we know well. The result is often a conversation that is lifeless and boring, if not confrontational. To mitigate this, simply decide that you will make a conscious effort to let go of all your preconceived assumptions and be curious about what the other person is saying. Be willing to gently dig deeply wherever things are unclear until you get a fuller picture. Enjoy the conversation as though there are mysteries to be solved.

Openness to learning. If you think you know everything, or enter into a conversation with a rigid perspective that you don’t want to change, you are unlikely to listen in a way that is satisfying to the other person. Try enter into each conversation thinking that there is something for you to learn, and actively seek out to learn something, either about the person, the issue they are having, or life in general. Another human perspective on things is the spice of life, and rather than focusing on the merits of your own perspective, consider trying to expand your worldview by paying close attention to how others see things.

A higher purpose. In the bigger picture, humanity will find greater unity as we coalesce our individual perspectives into a beautiful and complex tapestry. We contribute to this whenever we make each other’s point of view feel like it is something of value. In this endeavor, which I call ‘the new conversation,’ our listening is imbued with the a sense of deep reverence for life and our growth, not only as individuals but as a species. In each conversation that we partake in, we have an opportunity in the way we listen to further the evolution of collective consciousness. What greater motivation do we need than that?

The Takeaway

Devoting yourself to be a great listener for others, in a way that comes from the heart rather than simply the mind, will likely return your efforts tenfold in the magical connection and fulfillment you will feel.

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Consciousness

New Moon In Aquarius: Changing It Up

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We are having a New Moon in Aquarius on January 24th in the West and on the 25th in the East. This is initiating a new 29.5-day lunar cycle and new wave of energy for the coming month. However, the astrological configurations mentioned in this article will be more prominent over the coming two weeks. This cycle will include a Full Moon in Leo on February 8th/9th.

This New Moon follows an eclipse period and it’s good to keep in mind that the energies of these last two eclipses are still playing out in the background currently and over the coming months. You can read more about them here.

The Aquarius season began on January 20th/21st with Mercury also in this sign since January 16th. However, this New Moon accentuates its energies even more. Aquarius is associated with friends, social networks, the group, the team, humanity, and what is in the best interest of the collective.

It is intellectual, objective, and can be rational yet idealistic at the same time.  Associated with Uranus, it can be unconventional, innovative, original, inventive, progressive, technological, scientific, reforming, and even revolutionary.

Negatively, Aquarius can be overly detached, aloof, unemotional, and very invested in the mind at the expense of the heart. Traditionally ruled by Saturn, it can also be unyielding when it comes to the ideas and perspectives that it has already decided on.

New Moon Square Uranus and Sextile Chiron

This New Moon is in a square with Uranus which recently ended its retrograde a few weeks prior. There can be some surprises, liberating actions, or the start of moving forward in a freeing, innovative, unique, or unconventional way. Alternatively, we may strongly feel the desire to make changes at this time but may not follow through just yet.

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This energy can be erratic and may also manifest as disruptions, separation, accidents, rebellion, or even things breaking. Developments pertaining to technology, innovation, and new approaches can also play out.

The New Moon is also in a sextile to Chiron which can reinforce the originality of Uranus/Aquarius. This can reflect themes connected to healing, bridging, spirituality, wholeness, and/or holistic understanding and approaches. This aspect and the Uranus influence mentioned may have also been noticeable in the few days leading up to this lunation.

New Moon Conjunct Mercury Sextile Mars 

This New Moon is applying a conjunction to Mercury, also in Aquarius, which are all in a sextile with Mars in Sagittarius. Our minds and communications may be more energetic than usual. We may be more alert and direct in what we say and what we are thinking.

This can be good for applying ourselves in an educational way. Learning or conversations that are oriented around the big picture, sales/marketing, or connected to performing tasks may also play out. This can also be reflected in keeping busy, moving around more, or lots of commuting.

Venus Square Mars With Neptune in The Mix

Venus is in Pisces and is moving towards a conjunction with Neptune and square with Mars which is exact on January 26th-27th. At its best this energy can be creative, passionate, imaginative, inspiring, and romantic. Actions can be selfless and compassionate.

However issues and conflicts can also come up pertaining to escapism, unreliability, delusion, addiction, values, relationships, social dynamics, lack of boundaries, elusiveness, ideals, spirituality, fantasy, and perhaps some sort of confusion in these matters.

Also during this period, and especially from the 28th-29th when the Venus influence dwindles, it may be harder to focus our energy. We may be less assertive, less attentive, more scattered, and this can also be reflected by avoidance and a lack of drive.

Making Intentions and Things To Consider

There have been significant astrological configurations in January and late December. For many people, it may have had potent life-altering effects depending on how it connects to their personal astrological blueprint. What has come up for you in recent weeks and how should you proceed?

What do you need to do to help you progress in your evolution? What area of your life do you need to reform or approach differently? Are you looking to liberate yourself from a situation or behavior that is holding you back? If so, what do you need to do to achieve that? Do you need to take a more progressive, revolutionary, or collective approach to something? What do you need to do to create a better future? Is there an area of your life that needs to be looked at more objectively?

These are just some examples of what to consider or focus your intentions on at this time. However, it is good to reflect on anything else that is coming up for you. It is generally best to make any intentions within the first 24 hours following a New Moon. The exact moment it will occur is 9:42 pm Universal Time on January 24th  You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

Follow me on INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, and YOUTUBE for more astrology-related content.

Looking for astrological insight into what is going on in your life? Or perhaps looking to better understand your life and its potentials? Get a personalized astrology reading with Carmen (author of this article) specific to you based on your exact birth date, time, and location. Click here for more information or to order. 

Holographic 2020 Lunar Calendar

An art piece and lunar calendar all in one. This calendar features moon phases for every day of the month for the entirety of 2020.

Hologrpahic foil set on a dark 11" x 11" poster makes the moon's phases shimmer as light strikes them in this unique art piece.

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Awareness

Let’s Contemplate A Future Without Money & How It Would Work

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Several brave thinkers, including Jacque Fresco of the Venus Project and Colin Turner of the Free World Charter, have proposed ways in which a future society could thrive if we eliminated money and trade and instead built a resource-based economy.

  • Reflect On:

    The first step in any new paradigm is believing it's possible. Do you believe humanity could not only survive but thrive in a money-free world? What would it look like?

“For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. By craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.”–1 Timothy 6:10

While it is still not commonly held in mainstream discourse that humanity could survive and even thrive without some form of monetary exchange, more and more people that are starting to trace their general discontent about contemporary society to its source are finding money and profit motive at the root of it.

Perhaps the first of the knee-jerk reactions some people might have to the idea of shifting into a money-free system is the sinking feeling of watching their hard-earned wealth evaporate into nothingness, which they might equate with abject poverty. We are so programmed to equate money with abundance that we don’t understand what abundance truly is.

At the heart of it our ‘net’ abundance is shared, and is grounded in the resources available in nature on the planet. The aggregate of these natural resources not only represents our potential abundance but our very survival. A money system grants ownership to many of these resources, and makes it exponentially easier for those with abundance to get more abundance at the expense of the vast majority of people. A money system is, in some ways, antithetical to the proper management and distribution of these resources. Without money, each individual would naturally be entitled to their share of all the resources in the world, and that would never change. But how would such a system work?

Resource-Based Economy

Jacque Fresco, founder of the Venus Project, believes that the world has reached a level of technology that will allow us to build fully self-sustaining communities all over the world which, when optimally designed, will provide not only an unimaginably high level of abundance for all its residents, but a far greater sense of shared purpose within a community. This vision is grounded in the principles of a Resource-Based Economy:

In a Resource Based Economy all goods and services are available to all people without the need for means of exchange such as money, credits, barter or any other means. For this to be achieved all resources must be declared as the common heritage of all Earth’s inhabitants. Equipped with the latest scientific and technological marvels mankind could reach extremely high productivity levels and create abundance of resources.–Venus Project website

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Without profit motive, individuals within the community will naturally turn their energy towards the efficient maintenance of the infrastructure and problem-solving and innovation for the collective, as the happiness and well-being of the community is naturally equated with one’s own happiness and well-being.

In the video below is a brief introduction to Fresco’s inspiring vision of our potential future. More information. including where the Venus Project is at on their timeline, is available on their website.

No Need For Trade

Since money is nothing more than a medium of exchange, it is only in removing the convention of exchange or ‘trade’ itself that then renders money obsolete. That’s why a Resource-Based Economy proposes that ‘all resources must be declared as the common heritage of all Earth’s inhabitants.’

In his TedX talk, Colin Turner really questions the idea that ‘trade’ is the only organizational model for life on the planet, and in fact outlines the ways in which trade is actually antithetical to human abundance and well-being:

We all more or less accept trade as being the de facto way of operating our society, so much so that we even see it as some kind of universal law. But it might surprise you to know actually that trade has only existed in relatively recent years, that in 90% of our modern human history we didn’t actually trade at all, there still are no archaeological traces of trade. In these early tribal, agrarian communities what actually happened was there was an implied understanding that everyone in the tribe looked after each other. And this was how the tribes operated for perhaps the vast majority of our early human history.

So we see trade now as a very important way of doing business, and you have to say that trade works, I get what I want and you get what you want and we all go home happy. But when you actually scratch the surface a little bit more about how trade actually pans out in the real world, it’s not such a nice story. It seems to be a better theory than actually works out in practice.

For example, the most obvious case is, about 3 billion people in the world today live on $2.50 or less a day–many of them much, much less than that. Obviously they are wracked with starvation or dying of curable diseases, so, I mean, you have to ask yourself, is trade really working for them, for those people? Clearly, it isn’t.

Colin Turner is the founder of The Free World Charter, which currently has 58,611 signatories among people from 215 different countries (and would welcome yours, if you are so inclined). The charter constitutes a set of principles that really formalizes the notion that all human individuals are entitled to maintain an equal share of the Earth’s resources, but it also outlines the natural responsibilities and practices that each individual would assume in order to live optimally and harmoniously together in a money-free community and world. Here are the ten principles:

  1. The highest concern of humanity is the combined common good of all living species and biosphere.
  2. Life is precious in all its forms, and free to flourish in the combined common good.
  3. Earth’s natural resources are the birthright of all its inhabitants, and free to share in the combined common good.
  4. Every human being is an equal part of a worldwide community of humans, and a free citizen of Earth.
  5. Our community is founded on the spirit of cooperation and an understanding of nature, provided through basic education.
  6. Our community provides for all its members the necessities of a healthy, fulfilling and sustainable life, freely and without obligation.
  7. Our community respects the limits of nature and its resources, ensuring minimal consumption and waste.
  8. Our community derives its solutions and advances progress primarily through the application of logic and best available knowledge.
  9. Our community acknowledges its duty of care and compassion for members who are unable to contribute.
  10. Our community acknowledges its responsibility to maintain a diverse and sustainable biosphere for all future life to enjoy

These are certainly not the final words on which principles should truly define a future society and world free of money, but in reading them one can clearly grasp the overall essence of the kind of mindset we will need to develop and implement in our lives if we are to shift into this new paradigm.

Walking Away From A Money Economy

The shift we are looking for here is grounded in a conscious move by the individuals of this planet away from a model of competition and towards a model of cooperation. We are all quite familiar with both, as we surely have an ample amount of experience in both ways of relating to the people around us. If you could choose right now, which kind of model would you want as the basis for the entire planet?

Some might argue that the competitive/trade/money paradigm has been instrumental in getting us to make progress, especially technologically, which we may not have achieved by remaining with the cooperative tribal model. There may be some truth in this. But does it not seem that, at this time in history, most of us have had it with the debt, scarcity, and inequality that is a hallmark of the money model? Are we not hungering for more love, cooperation and shared abundance imbued in the very organizational structures we create for ourselves to live?

Understand that making this change is not as simple as going to the United Nations or other authoritative world body, as Jacque Fresco has already done. Presenting a compelling vision of a future without money to the benefit of all of humanity does not automatically mean that the world authority will implement it right away. The powers behind world authority like the UN are actually made up of those who have the most money. What we see going on in the public arena are essentially the machinations of the puppets they control.

This is nothing new. An overall system that maintains power by the few has been in place ever since money and exchange were introduced. While in the past this wealth was protected over generations and generations by certain families who were the visible ‘royalty,’ ‘noblemen’ and ‘aristocracy’ of the day, today’s world only differs in the sense that these powers are more hidden from sight, while countries maintain the illusion of having some form of ‘democracy.’

The point is that we will never be able to elicit the help of our authority if we want to abandon our current money economy. Those in authority, who at the very top own a vast percentage of the world’s resources, certainly believe they would have the most to lose if we moved to a model founded on equally-shared abundance. What we actually need to do is elicit the help of each other, energizing important movements and fostering an awakening as to how powerful we actually are as a collective. When a critical mass of us begin marching in step to a new way of life, the current authority will have no power to stop us.

The Takeaway

A money-free society and world can certainly work from the standpoint of creating abundance for everyone on the planet. What is needed is a new awareness founded on some of the natural principles discussed here. The more that individuals of the planet slowly move away from competitive money-centered practices and spend their time and energy cultivating cooperation, the more quickly we will be able to collectively walk away from a system that no longer serves us.

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