Now, after ten months of freak show, I have to ask it again. What is the American dream - to you? It's a question I think each American has to answer. The consensus answer will create our future and impact the entire planet for generations to come. But before we answer, let's remember that what brought the Pilgrims here was a search for sanctuary from religious tyranny in England. Unfortunately, they themselves projected that huge shadow of theocratic cruelty on the indigenous peoples they met in this "sanctuary," claimed for the white-skins of Europe by the explorer, Christopher you know who.
By way of historical correction, I thought about calling Christopher a son of a bitch, because as his historians say, he was a cruel man, but it's misogynist, as the bitch here is to blame. Then I thought to use the word, bastard, but same thing. Bastard is an illegitimate child under many patriarchal laws around the world. Any woman who dares have a child on her own, give it her name, dooms not only herself to social disgrace, but also her child, to varying degree, depending on the strictness of the patriarchy. So, why should I perpetuate this subtle, psychic brainwashing by using the language that these laws have coined? I'll come up with something new: let's see; what fits? Ah, yes. Devil; one who worships evil, i.e., himself, and perpetuates unspeakable, unbearable and unnecessary cruelty on everything that thwarts him.
Back to my American Dream. You see, America, today, is a place where one is free to grow; rich is only one avenue, a rather temporal, though popular one. However, we live in the Age of Consciousness, the age of inner-space exploration and new quantum paradigms. Why dream the same old dream?
We also live in a time of great crisis and great opportunity as the wise ones have said. We will create the reality we give our energy to, our inward and outward allegiance. "The world is as we dream it", is at once ancient shamanic knowledge and the title of a great book by John Perkins about shamanic wisdom.
As a woman, who is also an American citizen, I'm appalled that the rights our grandmothers fought for, a fight in which they sacrificed a great deal, (as did the brave men who fought with them) should be again jeopardized by religious extremists seeking to rule. Women fought a literal war with men who denied them, who governed them, in order to win the right to vote. TO VOTE for holiness sake! (As historical review, I recommend two recent films, "Suffragette" and "Iron Winged Angels.") It was no tea party for our women ancestors; they had no acknowledged voice or choice in government or in society.
Voting was just one battle; they also had to fight for reproductive freedom, for rights and protection against laws that prevent her from exercising stewardship over her own body. The battle continues to this day, in this election and around the world. Patriarchal theocracies are still seeking to control her.
How can the grand daughters and sons, the great grand daughters and sons, of those brave freedom fighting forebears, (quite literally) allow this country to once again be ruled publicly and personally by authoritarian and patriarchal theocracy and corporatacracies?
Here's my dream. In this difficult election season that has people in conflict and on edge, we take a moment to breathe, to center and realize that Never will there be as important a time as NOW. (Just ask one of my favorite contemporary teachers in the Consciousness Movement, Eckhart Tolle.)
After that wonderful, centering deep breath, we each connect with the heart, with what your heart truly loves. If it's money, okay, but there's so much more! Whatever you learn and how ever greatly you love, that goes with you; the money, property and power stays. I dream that we dare to dream a new dream, one where losing our fear of death, we see life with new eyes and find meaning through inner as well as outer riches. I dare to dream that amassing riches will never again be literal, ugly and world destructive, just the opposite. We'll dream ourselves into a future we want instead of waking up in one we fear.
The story we tell ourselves is supremely important. There's the communal patriarchal story we've been immersed in for so long which promotes fear and separation, and there's the deeper story, one that promotes hope. I AM immortal NOW. I'm an immortal having this experience. I've volunteered for this stint on earth, this physical reality. (I love how when I say say, "Sheesh, what a world, my life partner, Jim responds; "It's not the world, it's the people in it. The world is a beautiful place.")
The world is as we dream it; life is as we dream it. What is our dream, collectively as Americans? What is our vision for "the future?" Perhaps, we've all got a mission to accomplish and a lesson to learn in this present reality that we can take Home with us when we die. How should that color our collective dream?
Fear of death, of what we believe about death is another hot topic in the New Consciousness movement. For the sake of brevity, we live in a time of exploring that final frontier. It behooves a person to come out from the fug of patriarchal paradigms, especially as they envelop spirituality, and smell the coffee; we have delicious opportunities for personal and collective growth. Dreams are our organic spirituality and our passkey to where we came from an where we're going; both sleep dreams and waking dreams. We can learn to use them to heal ourselves, each other and our relationship to this beautiful planet.
To dream awake is to imagine from the heart; to come from the heart is very different than to come from the wallet. To come from fear and hate is very different than to come from love and trust. Depending on where you come from, you'll do different things, make different choices. Each choice matters. If you know that you'll live after death, just the way you're living now and beyond, then it colors your choices.
As a woman on this physical plane, I don't know about you, but I don't want to go through the shit great-grand mama did, or that generations of suffering, confined, mistreated and beleaguered women before her did, ever again. NEVER AGAIN! I also count on other men and women, sisters and brothers, lovers and parents, not to allow fear and mistrust to obscure the dream we create for ourselves. For me, that dream includes freedoms that go way beyond the nearsighted grab for money that doesn't see beyond these borders, these mind forged manacles, as Blake put it.
I dream freedom to grow as my heart tells me to grow. It's freedom to do the job I was sent here to do in the most loving, creative way I can. If I'm a woman, in a temporal paradigm, I want to make sure ridiculous, confining and sadistic laws don't keep me from being free.
Women, some women, have only recently enjoyed, in the patriarchal 6 thousand year global paradigm we've endured, the freedom from the legal, social and moral restraints that theocratic male rule has inflicted on them. Case in point, I think of how one of my favorite mystery authors recently wrote about witch burning in such a way that I know she never would have done of the more well known Jewish genocide of the mid-twentieth century: jokingly. "Witch" was an accusation in Medieval patriarchy; it was and often, it still is. Back then, it meant death to be called a witch; you remember Salem. What made all this unnecessary cruelty to women possible? Religious patriarchal theocracies.
It doesn't matter if that theocracy is Christian, Muslim or Judaic, the Big Three Traditions. If a woman is not legally, socially and personally free to do, say and be as she pleases, she is a slave. Our great-grandmas fought bitterly to give us the right JUST TO VOTE!
My American Dream is of a land where most people are waking up to the great New Reality that includes immortality NOW. The violence that is so prevalent, and has always been in patriarchies, will give way to kindness and creativity. We'll collectively dream ways to live that aren't the way we're living now. We'll continue to support the basic rights of sisters and brothers to not be like us; respecting each other, we'll create new communities. We'll open our doors to what it's possible to achieve through fearless love and wisdom; we'll support each other in our best efforts and in living our best dreams.
So dream big and vote carefully! Abigail Adams once requested of her loving, Father of Independence, husband, "Remember the ladies" when you draft your legislation. Though her request fell on mostly deaf and mocking ears among the ruling elite, let her voice ring clearly in our vote, NOW. And let's dream a world without end, forever and ever. Amen and Awomen.