Friday, March 26, 2010

Waking the Sleeping Tiger

The term's been trotted out by sound bite trained military commanders trying to come up with a fitting image for describing the enemy. Like the Japanese admiral who reflected after Pearl Harbor, "Perhaps we've just awakened a sleeping tiger."

It's always used to point to a condition of potential that waits, dozing in the wings, for its hour upon the stage.

But in today's desperate world, we need the sleeping tiger to get its butt into gear.

Today on Thinking with Somebody Else's Head, Waking the Sleeping Tiger.

This program, I hope, will be a clarion call to all who have a spark still burning in the embers of their idealism. As there was for me when I read Norberto Keppe's seminal book for idealists the world over, Liberation of the People: the Pathology of Power. This book was a beacon for me because of its scientific analysis of our inverted social structure which has led us so far from anything remotely resembling a just situation. This book is a searing critique that manages to give us hope even while it's pointing out the sickness and destruction that has come at our hands. Because Keppe's book speaks to a deeper level in us than just revolutionary fervor like that "off with their heads" blood lust that perverted ideals behind the French Revolution.

Keppe speaks to universal values like tolerance and dignity while shining an unwavering critical eye on the causes of our current desperate impasse, while continuing to suggest reasonable and rational solutions to our dilemma which we could put into practice immediately to great effect.

He also has some extremely important things to say about the pathology of power, and how power is controlled by the sickest individuals on the planet - something that's never been understood well because of our admiration for the rich and famous that stems from our Inversion and envy, which he outlines in this book, and because the powerful manipulate everything in secret so that everything goes to their favor and not the favor of the vast majority of human beings.

We quite simply don't get the full story in our media and halls of education and so remain ignorant of this nefarious situation. This, of course, is what I'm trying to address through this program. And what Norberto Keppe has been trying to address for decades through his books and TV and radio programs.

Our program today will be a wake up call - we hope - for any of you with dreams for a just society still burning, however dimly, beneath your breast. Keppe's science of Analytical Trilogy offers real hope for a way back from the abyss.

I'd like to make Keppe's monumental book, Liberation of the People, available to you free of charge. I'll only ask you to help with mailing costs. We'll foot the rest. I think if enough people can get up to speed with Keppe's ideas in this book, really start to resonate with them, we're not too late to effect real change on this planet.

Email me if you'd like a free copy of Liberation of the People. And one other thing ... our psychosocial forum May 13 - 15, 2010 here in São Paulo will be another good thing for you to know about. Check out the site.

Today, psychosocial therapist, Gilbert Gambucci, joins me to try to wake up the sleeping tiger.

Click here to listen to this episode.

Monday, March 01, 2010

The Prison of Victimhood

It is enticing to follow its seductive lure. "It's not your fault. You couldn't help it. There was nothing you could do." These are the beguiling voices we hear.

Victims drive the ratings on daytime TV, after all. Blaming, finger pointing, laying on the guilt - so common, so righteous, so ... convenient.

And so wrong.

Today on Thinking with Somebody Else's Head, freeing ourselves from the Prison of Victimhood.

Now you who are regular listeners to Thinking with Somebody Else's Head will already have a good idea which side of this theme we're goint to come down on, don't you? Our program, based as it is on the cutting edge psychological research coming out of the Brazilian school of Analytical Trilogy, could do nothing other than focus the discussion inward. Because that's where the trail inevitably leads.

Norberto Keppe, the scientist behind the profound work coming out of Analytical Trilogy these days - and it is formidable indeed, in the areas of education and medicine and economics and physics - Keppe puts forward the idea that we have contact with all the magnificence and glory of Creation through our inner selves, that beautiful atmosphere of universal knowledge and wisdom that resides within each one of us. Plato called it the world of infused knowledge, meaning intelligence and savvy that we are born with. In Keppe's language, these universal knowings within would be divine concepts inside the human mind.

And this opens the door to a staggering thought given all the modern science that points in the opposite direction, and that is that we are not creatures who are evolving to greater intelligence and knowledge at all, but we are instead creations with all possible understanding already infused in us. And coming to re-discover that is an inner journey.

There is already evidence of the presence of this native intelligence and sense of ethics from our very beginning as babies in excellent research coming out of the Infant Cognitive Center at Yale and University of California at Berkley professor, Alison Gopnik's studies into the Philosophical Baby, and they've reached fascinating conclusions about the rich and intelligent inner life of babies from the beginning.

All of this to say that it's by treading the inner path that we really come to know reality, not through our external machinations. Not to say we don't gain substantial wisdom from our experiences - of course we do - but I mean that it's through this outer contact that we come to know ourselves, that self that already exists and is not simply a product of our outer experience.

Which is what Socrates was contending 2500 years ago.

So victimhood, that state of being shaped and fashioned by our outer traumas, can be re-considered, which is exactly what we'll do today. Helena Mellander, a frequent contributor to Thinking with Somebody Else's Head, is a Swedish journalist who's been having quite an impact with her new blog in Swedish written with our colleague, educator Sofie Bergqvist. Helena wrote about this recently to interesting discussion from the Swedish community.

If this also stirs your desire to comment, I'm always happy to hear from you.

Now, freeing ourselves from the Prison of Victimhood.

Click here to listen to this episode.