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Alive and Well in East Powys

Despite the upbeat title to this piece, the story that attaches is not so. Indeed it is quite dreadful.

Passing four badger corpses between Bleddfa and, 8 miles away, Llandrindod Wells yesterday, it become quite apparent to me that Badger Baiting is alive and well in Eastern Powys.

When I lived in the Central in the 1990s I was wakened one night by the most dreadful howling and frightening wailing coming from across the fields. I lay awake wondering what on earth it could be. It wasn’t like a football crowd, though it had something of the same strength to it.

I realised it was badger baiting the following day when I came across the body of a female badger discarded by the side of the road. The perpetrators of this dreadful gambling pursuit like to pretend the torn bodies are ‘road kill’. The horrible thing was that this female was, herself quite young, pregnant with three little ones inside her.

Let’s be clear, this is not a new thing in Wales. The Mabinogion, that Medieval chronicle, records a pastime called ‘Badger in the bag’. In this a supposed badger was thrown in a bag on the the floor where it was kicked and beaten with staves until the thing was lifeless. Of course, needless to say, it was often not a badger but some person the host of the event had taken exception to and wanted to get rid of them. Bound and gagged there was no way of knowing that it was not a badger until the identity might be revealed at the end of the night.

I am saddened to see such barbarous practices are still carried out in Wales – no doubt in other parts of Britain as well. Where money is concerned there is little room for conscience.

An Extraordinary event

Last night I had an amazing dream. I was with a group of people – could be called several groups of people – around a sort of informal camp site, or farmyard. Difficult to say, there were buildings there, but the dream took place outside, around at least one camp fire.

I was thrilled to be announcing to others that we had finally rid ourselves of the dreadful disease that has infected the human race and blighted the planet for several millennia. The Bible tells us it has been 6 millennia, I don’t know if that is correct. To me it feels a lot longer. But finally we are rid of the egotistical selfish sickness which besets some souls in our sector. As I explained this to one group of listeners, to emphasise the point, I formed my hands into fists and sprang them apart to form a wide opened channel. Like slamming the doors wide open to allow at last a breath of fresh air into our cloistered world. A Cross! It is Done! Like the Long Man of Wilmington, that Pictish carving in East Sussex of their God Atlas. Not that I claim to be Atlas, that honour goes to Plato.

In the original story Atlas did not hold the heavens on his shoulders, as is presented in the story of Hercules in his encounter with the God on his way to retrieve the Golden Apples of the Garden of the Hesperides. No! Originally Atlas held two staffs keeping the Heavens apart from the Earth. It was as if I held those staffs in my hands and tore them open, thrusting them wide apart.

Naturally the whole race suffers from the sickness when that disease arrives on the planet, which serves for a duration, as a sanatorium for those poor souls who take themselves to be praiseworthy, and the source of bounty to others, and forget that everything comes from the One, whatever name one calls That by. There is plenty on this site about that particular condition if you need more information on it. Dig around.

So for a long time now we have all suffered under this blighted sense of self-importance. We have forgotten that the soul roves through the animal kingdom, weaving in and out of human incarnation, and somehow take ourselves to be different from animals, superior to, and no relation to, them. This has lead to the dreadful exploitation we witness, and the pollution which destroys our rivers in the run off from over-exploited animals’ waste.

These bales of ‘haylage’ are addictive. The cattle love it and get their heads stuck into it, but it weakens their bodies, as can be sensed from the stench of the scours it gives them that pervades the fields after ‘muck spreading’. Once cattle poo smelt healthy. Now it just smells sour.

To add to this sense of wonder with which I awoke, after the dream announcing the end of our trial, I heard on the news, of the amazing aurora that appeared last night across the whole of the United Kingdom. An unusual event indeed. The Sun itself, it seems to me, is celebrating the end of that sickness with a Heavenly Rainbow event.

To complement all of this I notice that the Sun is one day short of conjunction with Uranus, ruler of Aquarius, the New Age. Our sign of release, respect and fellowship.

Tourism – Myths and Mischief

In the early 1960s my master Bernhard Wosien recognised the danger of a loss of culture. The dances, he told us, were being taken from the villages and used as performance pieces to attract tourists, both from within the nations involved as well as from abroad. For Bernhard the dances were the way the village healed itself. ‘It is not possible to dance in a circle with someone and remain angry at them.’, he told us.

Even in the 60s tourism was seen as the saviour of faltering economies. However it was not to speak of cultural collapse through removing artefacts, such as dances and music, from their natural setting to become pieces performed by professionals that I wished to write, but rather of the ramifications of tourism and its impact on local cultures. This is particularly with regard to the planned removal of the Maasai from their ancestral lands, though these are but a single example of a global policy by the wealthy.

It was tourism which decimated the plains cultures of North America. Through the use of railroads cutting through the grazing and migratory lands of the buffalo a conscious policy was adopted with the intention of destroying the Native economy. We are all familiar with the destruction of the buffalo by glory hunters riding trains and shooting into the midst of the herds indiscriminately and taking only the heads, or the skins, as trophies. America almost lost it iconic animal through these joyriders.

A similar venture is currently planned in Finland running a railroad through the grazing lands of the reindeer.

Today we find every culture around the world – other than the pseudo culture of coke, burgers and crispy salty snacks – under threat.

But lets look at why that is? Surely it cannot be the luxury hotels and burger bars alone who are backing this global exploitation? Do you remember the American dentist who lured the Kenyan Mascot lion out of the national park so that he could take its head home as atrophy? Of what? His courage? As crass and uncaring an action as that of the vandal who sawed down the Cumberland Gap Sycamore that so outraged the British people. Why do some people assume they have the right to destroy things which they do not own and which hold a place in many other people’s hearts? Truly I disavow this species.

Tourism promotes not only luxury hotels, but also the means to get to these exotic locations. We can assume the travel industry is also behind pushing people off their land to make a quick buck from those that can afford its indulgent prices. Lets face it the majority of people will never get to go to an African tourist park, so it is only the few who will benefit from this. Meanwhile an entire culture will be lost – along with its wildlife – through the move to a new location. All the stories and history of the people remain there, where now there is a tourist trap. Its sacred places desecrated in the name of profit. A nation knows the land it has been forced to leave, it knows its seasons, grazing and droughts. What does it know of the land it is forced on to? And what of those displaced from there to make way for their neighbours? How do they feel?

The whole situation is deplorable. Money bullying its wants forward – no question of need in commerce, it is greed which directs it and the desire for conquest and success. But how is success to be measured? An ancient culture that has survived from ancient times into the modern era has to be considered a success. A momentary promotion which is likely to collapse after 30 years can only be seen as a failure.

Salmon drinking sewage

For the last year we have been hearing about the terrible state of British rivers overrun as they are by the waste water from the water companies that are supposed to protect British waters. But while the fat cats sit and pour over their shares and returns little thought is given to the fish that frequent these waters.

I have no doubt the fat cats like a plate of fish now and then, but at what price? The sacrifice of their income? Probably not.

The legislation is in place, but the will from central government is not there to enforce it, and instead meekly accepts the ‘overflow through excess rainfall’ excuse. No thought given to the lack of investment to provide a modern efficient water cleansing system.

How many stop to think of the plight of the fish?

Salmon young are born in the headwaters of the rivers, amongst green meadows and languidly lolling trees. They find their way downstream to the estuary and off on the grand adventure of the open seas. How long do they wander the oceans? According to one report they might be in the ocean for from one to seven years. Finally the mature fish feels the need to return to its breeding grounds and, using its acute sense of smell, follows the current’s stream back to the river from which it was born.

Consider the Teifi river in Ceredigion, what used to be called by the anglicised Cardiganshire. I quote ‘Welsh Water has admitted illegally spilling untreated sewage at dozens of treatment plants for years.’ (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-67077510). One of these spillage points is at the very mouth of the Teifi as it enters Cardigan Bay.

The poor salmon, breathing as they do through gills, swim with their mouths open looking for the familiar taste of home and their breeding grounds. What they are greeted with is the foul taste of p*ss and sh*t which they are expected to swim through to reach the – hopefully – unpolluted waters beyond. Of course we know that rivers beyond are polluted by the run off from the poor agricultural practices encouraged by banks and big business, of over fertilisation and pesticides. In the 3, 4, or 7 years the fish have been away the waters will have become unrecognisable to the returning wanderers.

Is it not understood that if the fish stop breeding in these rivers there is no impulse for them to return to them in the future? Once lost the fish will not return.

‘Oh’, cry the pseudo-envioronmentalists, ‘we can soon reseed the waters with fresh eggs. They will soon breed again.’ But I doubt it. I don’t believe these well-meaning people have considered the lack of culture the young they introduce will suffer from. ‘Culture is fine arts and opera. Fish don’t have opera and theatre.’, comes the cry. But culture is learned behaviour. Young fish learn from older fish which rivers to flock to and at what seasons. They learn where to seek food and shelter. This is culture. Instinct is another garbage term invented by science to cover ‘anything we cannot explain by our current ideas’. Like shizophrenia in medical practice.

As for the rest, consider, the next time you have a high evening out in the city attending a performance of your favourite artist, as you eat your salmon broquettes that you are ingesting a creature that has absorbed with both mouth and gills the polluted waters this decadent species to which we belong is imposing on them. See if that makes you feel well.

Settling on the Moon

I saw an article in the news the other day about the Japanese moon landing. Part of the aticle said it was a precursor to creating a settlement on the moon constructing buildings from materials found on the moon’s surface.

I find myself wondering how arcades, entertainment lounges, laboratories and administrative offices might stand up to being built of cream cheese. The original Pie in the Sky.

However there is a serious note to this post.

Wherever on the Moon a settlement is placed the settlement itself will be in darkness for a portion of each lunar cycle. At New Moon the lit surface of the Moon faces away from the Earth while at full Moon the lit surface faces the Earth full on. In between, as we know, the lit surface grows, with more of the face facing the Earth becoming lit, only to shrink away on passing full. This has the effect of a 20 day sunrise and setting for the community there. The remaining 8 days will be effectively in darkness.

I wonder the effect on the body and consequently on the mental health of anyone living in such an environment. I cannot believe it will be healthy at all.

And what of settling on a Moon of Jupiter, as has been suggested so often in science fiction novels and movies? In place of the Sun as a dominant force there will be Jupiter booming away in the face of the settlers. They won’t suffer from Sunburn but from Jupiter-burn, or gain a jovial tan. The Sun will be relegated to a small light in the distant sky with many of the other Moons of Jupiter being yet more visible than the Star itself.

I mention this only in terms of mental balance and wonder what consideration has been given to this in the scientific communities who seem so ready to throw money into the sky, while turning their backs on the world in which we all currently live.

The Breakdown of Diplomacy

In the Middle Ages the safety of knights was guaranteed by the use of recognised symbols which declared that the person belonged to a certain spiritual order. While some of it was simply a question of ransom, there was also another aspect, which was that people expected honourable behaviour from one another. It was a shared understanding that if one extended mercy towards others, one could expect the same in return should one find oneself in unfortunate circumstances.

It was ancient, originating, not in Egypt, but in Sumeria and India. It was a universal understanding, like the envoy’s staff of office, which was respected by all sides.

As it becomes more widespread and more fully understood, when it is no longer respected beyond the nation’s borders, it serves a different purpose. It becomes a liability. While it may be useful in one’s home country to develop business or one’s career, it can be wrong to assume the same integrity remains which once existed.

We have seen many examples in the press over the last 20 years or so, of people arrested as spies in foreign countries. Despite protesting their innocence as business people or reporters, some have spent many years in uncomfortable prisons before finally gaining release through the actions of their governments in negotiations with the hostile nation which arrested them. Often these negotiations invovle lucrative economic incentives for the arresting nation. So the ransom element remains high on the agenda.

Far from being a safeguard these same symbols and signs, which serve to get one noticed for the right reasons at home, now serve to get one noticed for the wrong. Perhaps it is time to develop a new collection of symbols that will be recognised and honoured unilaterally.

The sorry thing is that during the last 50 years the idea of honour in international relations seems to have become lost. From the USA planning devastating campaigns in Vietnam destroying forests and villagers indiscriminately through to the stealing of populations from Ukraine by Russia in the last 12 months to the frightful behaviour in Gaza.

When a system no longer serves its purpose the only thing to do is drop it. Meanwhile be careful what you say to others, particularly strangers. It may not be as smart and safe as you previously believed it to be.

Righting the Wrongs

“You cannot right the wrongs of the world. The wrongs of the world is how the wrongs are righted.”

This thought was in my mind as I woke the other day. It was with reference to the injustice that is so evident in today’s world. As the western powers build towards the prophesied Armageddon as if it is inevitable and the Sub-postmasters attempt to gain some semblance of justice from the onerous behaviour of the leaders of the Post Office.

It lead me to reflect that the wounds of the past need to be cleared, from each individual, as well as every nation. This cannot be done by legislation, that is, by any form of unilateral declaration. It has to be endured and the Karmic imbalance rectified.

So instead of battling windmills I suppose one is better guiding gently the one’s around oneself to embrace forgiveness and lick their wounds until they are clean and freed from the scars and scabs that the past has put upon each of us.

In the meantime the imbalance in the world, the wrongs as they are perceived, must remain in place until such time as humanity learns it is better to co-operate than to resist, Nature in particular, and that the wrestling goes on within the individual, not projected on to others around oneself.

The Darkness of Tartarus

Many classical scholars misunderstand Hesiod when he speaks of Earth containing Tatarus.

Tartarus was the darkness, which may be the same as is called in the Bible ‘the darkness under the Earth’, or perhaps that was the waters beneath the earth. This is not to be confused with Night, a much vaster realm.

Tartarus is the place where the souls are lost and longing to return to life. They cannot do so, not through any fault of their own but because they are lost. Not in the sense of lost and damned forever. A concept peculiarly Christian in my life, though perhaps shared more widely than that. Lost because they are identifying with a former life they have lost and don’t know how to deal with the new situation.

As a result of this Tartarus is a place where the souls are wailing, and perhaps gnashing their teeth, or what passes for teeth amongst discarnate spirits.

But as to where this place is, well, it is necessary to expand the concept of Creation to include the revolution of the Sun about a given centre we call a cosmos. This is not to be mistaken for the Galaxy. The Sun is part of a collection of stars which revolve together to form the body of a greater entity called a Cosmos. This in turn floats in the Galactic Ocean. Some might call it Arcturus. The star cluster is that of the Pleiades.

However within the body of this Cosmos is a great darkness. Esoteric texts tell us it is indigo and that this is why the sky looks black at night. It is within that great darkness that the lost souls struggle to find their escape, but not knowing their way through the ‘bardo’, to give it another name, they find themselves wrestling and struggling, each more lost than the last.

Still beset by the desires of their former lives they hanker after breath and the tastes of life. As Homer records ‘they long for the taste of blood’. In this sense they are bloodthirsty, but that does not mean they are vengeful. Merely unhappy and seeking any way they can to find themselves back again in the endless chain of Life.