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From: Bruce S.
Date: Saturday, May 23, 2009, 11:15 AM
Subject: USA.CAN - Spiritual Activism and The Shift
Reply to: 267977
ID: 268068

 Dear Ron - dear Everybody --

Ron, my apologies for the delay  in posting your message -- for various reasons this network and some other are "moderated" -- the general intent being to keep the email load to a minimum.

Today, I am continuing to chip away on various aspects of this larger design, all of which seems to be coming into focus around some kind of "political action" -- a very demanding philosophic and technical exercise.  But it seems to be happening, if a bit bumpy at times.

Your ideas about a wider range of academic contacts are very appealing -- that's something I'd like to pursue.  I've been wondering whether I should approach some academic PolySci departments -- maybe to introduce some of these possibilities, maybe to look for some interns...

I can think of all these projects -- like building a database of relevant newspaper articles.  I subscribe by email to the LA Times, the Washington Post, and the NY Times.  A lot of great materials come through those sources -- but it does not remain available for more than a short while.  I'd like to load that information into a archive that can help illustrate the complexity of our situation, and the historical record of its unfolding.  It would be great to have some help with things like that.

Something you might do, Ron -- is get yourself into this new "USA.CAN" network.  We're starting to do some organizing right here in Santa Barbara (you are at UCSB, are you not?) -- and you might be a very helpful liaison to that community.

A lot in the air -- moving slow -- but moving widely...

- Bruce


--- On Mon, May 18, 2009, in msg267977, Ron Robinson wrote ---

HI Bruce,

Great ideas here. I would also recommend contacts in Sociology, Psychology, Philosophy, Religious and Global Studies Depts. etc. as well as University Student organizations and government. However, I would also offer this caveat - that there are people in these Departments that are nominally "liberal" and "progressive" etc., but who don't support Obama for various reasons and resist efforts that might be supportive (obviously, the more conservative elements are even more resistant). I'd also suggest that a new interspirit politics be based on empathy, compassion, and connectedness, i.e., one based on the ethic/ethos of: "I am because we are, and since we are, therefore, I am."

I believe this is especially important now because  aspects of the "new-age" religious/self-empowerment movement (including Scientology/Landmark Forum etc.) run directly counter to this ethic. Yet, they have attracted many people who consider themselves liberals and Obama supporters. The roots and foundations of this movement are Ayn Rand/L.Ron Hubbard/Werner Earhardt/Rupert Murdoch etc. and are hyper individualistic, self oriented, and based on classic Eurologic psychoanalytic foundations that have the potential of derailing Obama's agenda and turning it into a  more conservative, "blame the victim" approach to addressing socially and historically structured problems that disproportionately affect certain groups.

I applaud your efforts and hope to be able to positively contribute to them.

Best, Ron


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