Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Thus Quoth the Raven, Nevermore

 

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
" 'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door;
Only this, and nothing more."

Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow, sorrow for the lost Lenore,.
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore,
Nameless here forevermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me---filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
" 'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door,
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door.
This it is, and nothing more."

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
"Sir," said I, "or madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is, I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you." Here I opened wide the door;---
Darkness there, and nothing more.

Deep into the darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word,
Lenore?, This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word,
"Lenore!" Merely this, and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping, something louder than before,
"Surely," said I, "surely, that is something at my window lattice.
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore.
Let my heart be still a moment, and this mystery explore.
" 'Tis the wind, and nothing more."

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately raven, of the saintly days of yore.
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door.
Perched upon a bust of Pallas, just above my chamber door,
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning, little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door,
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
With such name as "Nevermore."

But the raven, sitting lonely on that placid bust, spoke only
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered; not a feather then he fluttered;
Till I scarcely more than muttered, "Other friends have flown before;
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before."
Then the bird said, "Nevermore."

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
"Doubtless," said I, "what it utters is its only stock and store,
Caught from some unhappy master, whom unmerciful disaster
Followed fast and followed faster, till his songs one burden bore,---
Till the dirges of his hope that melancholy burden bore
Of "Never---nevermore."

But the raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore --
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt and ominous bird of yore

Meant in croaking "Nevermore."

Thus I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl, whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamplight gloated o'er,
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamplight gloating o'er
She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by seraphim whose footfalls tinkled on the tufted floor.
"Wretch," I cried, "thy God hath lent thee -- by these angels he hath
Sent thee respite---respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore!
Quaff, O quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget this lost Lenore!"
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore!"

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!--prophet still, if bird or devil!
Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate, yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted--
On this home by horror haunted--tell me truly, I implore:
Is there--is there balm in Gilead?--tell me--tell me I implore!"
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil--prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that heaven that bends above us--by that God we both adore--
Tell this soul with sorrow laden, if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden, whom the angels name Lenore---
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden, whom the angels name Lenore?
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."

"Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!" I shrieked, upstarting
"Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken! -- quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!"
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."

And the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming.
And the lamplight o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted - nevermore!

by Edgar Allan Poe, first published in 1845

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Embracing Equality

It would seem that there are good people in the world, and that there are bad people in the world. If you were to ask one of the bad people their perception of things, you'd likely find that they had their own list of good people and bad people. Of course, they are likely to see themselves as one of the good people, and perhaps even see you as one of the bad people.

If you are part of a group that mostly agrees who is bad and who is not, you merely share a similar aspect of the illusion. If you travel outside your group, you will inevitably find other groups that see the world differently and do not perceive you to be one of the good people. Maybe they see you as an infidel, or as a white person who acts superior, oppressing others with your desires and fortunate economic circumstances.

Inadvertently, we all create bad people in our lives so that we have an outlet for focusing our guilt and shame and anger on them...

'Cause everybody's gotta have somebody to look down on
Prove they can be better than at any time they please
Someone doin' somethin' dirty, decent folks can frown on
If you can't find nobody else, then help yourself to me

Kris Kristofferon – Jesus Was a Capricorn

.. so we can remain the good person, free of sin. Talk to most anyone and you find that person has judgments of others, and that it is he or she who is the good one. Each of us has a moral structure that keeps us safe and at peace in our own minds. If you look closely, you find that each person's behavior – no matter where you look – is motivated by these structures.

It is when we truly comprehend that we are all equal to every other being on the planet that we come to understand we are as mistaken as the next person – to judge another as good or bad is mere arrogance and self-righteous. When you reach this point of understanding, you lose all anger at others – for any reason – and grow in personal power as you grow in humility. You cannot help but become more aware of your own shortcomings in a sense that you discover that you are not really what you think you are, or at least what your ego thinks you are. You become much less showy, less demonstrative of your own grandiosity, as your true grandeur shines through.

Monday, March 29, 2021

Mirroring Vibrational Change

As you shift your consciousness, your ability to create your world shifts, and all the elements of your world shift within it. As you raise your vibration, those areas of your mind that are incompatible with that vibration come into the forefront for healing, and they will come into your awareness as negative events manifested in front of you. This is a very important awareness for you to have.

You see your world as this objective thing that is happening to you; it is not. It is a responsive system that shows where you are in your own consciousness. The world is your world. The world is your mind reflected back to you. So you see that there are many things that need to be shifted, and there are many things that need to be changed. When you are ensconced in the physicality of the material world, it gives you an idea of where your vibration is.

this is a benign universe in the sense that there is no judgment, there is no punishment. The world reflects your state of being, and when your world does not reflect back to you a state of being that you like or find enjoyable, it is only through shifting your own consciousness, shifting your own focus and your own responses to stimulus to the outside world, that you are able to shift the outside world. You are the creator, you are the maker of all things you see in front of you, you are the most powerful being, and you are divine in nature.

Jesus, My Autobiography, pp. 84, 90

Sunday, March 28, 2021

The Falsification of Science: Our Distorted Reality

Those who are able to see beyond the shadows and lies of their culture will never be understood, let alone believed by the masses.

PLATO

Science is usually systematically falsified for two quite distinct reasons... Firstly, as with history it may be falsified for political expediency, that is for the purpose of maintaining and propounding a false paradigm which supports the ongoing political agenda, but secondly and most commonly, science is often falsified for financial gain, usually directly benefiting the ruling Elite corporatocracy in some way.

But how can this possibly be true? Surely there would be a huge number of people 'whistle-blowing' and exposing these perpetrators as the criminals and frauds they surely are?'

There ARE indeed a huge number of people aware of and attempting to expose the perpetrators, but as with anything else that contradicts an 'official diktat,' the overwhelming power and influence of those in whose best interests it is to deceive us, and who control most of the world, including the media in all its forms, ensures that only small snippets of information escape into the mainstream. However, this is more than enough to 'paint a picture' of reality for those of us who are broadly aware of the ongoing deceit, and this allows us to expose the sordid truth embedded in all the many establishment lies we are able to dissect.

There is FAR MORE to discover about our universe, if we only would set ourselves free from the mental shackles of dogmatic, vested interest 'science' as practiced today in our Westernized, wholly materialistic culture. The mega wealthy, all-powerful corporations with their sun cult logos and ultra-slick marketing hype sell us idols and celebrities to worship instead, and slowly but surely bring the entire world under their influence whilst we tacitly believe their false science and not-so-subtle propaganda. We vote for their controlled politicians, read, watch, and listen to the lies and garbage emanating from their controlled media 24/7, buy their heavily promoted, often useless products, gizmos, and gadgets, listen to their dreary, repetitive, propaganda-filled, satanic 'music' and watch their sick, dysfunctional TV and movies and generally sacrifice our own souls upon the altar of materialism. And that is precisely the kind of world that suits their insidious agenda and why and how they are able to maintain control over all of our minds and spirits.

by John Hamer on March 21, 2021 at veritasradio.com

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Fear and Loathing in 2021

Upon returning from another multi-state trip, I sat down to reflect upon how much fear is still out there among the general populace over this jumped up flu infection that has been the most devious hoax perpetrated on the planet in my lifetime. At this point, banishing all that fear, even by official public decree, would take quite a bit of work. I'm afraid some folks may don a mask for the rest of their lives, against all proof.

But will any government actually want to banish the fear which has turned its citizens into anxiety-ridden and obedient zombies? There are calls in different countries to keep social distancing going into 2022. And even if the lockdowns stop, there is no guarantee that panicky politicians won't bring them back. Add to this that there are now some climate fanatics and green zealots that have regained power that want to keep the lockdowns in place indefinitely; they see it as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to use it to destroy capitalism, break the structure of modern society, and further their own aims.

New infectious organisms are discovered every year, so with the media already demonstrating that it is ready, willing, and able to help build a new scare over another major, full-blooded potential holocaust, will we ever see an end to the public fear-mongering?

Unfortunately the politically correct language used to talk around the issue is deliberately designed to discourage dissent. Politicians are terrified of making decisions that might prove controversial. They are never going to admit that they got things terribly wrong.  They are, sorry to say, perhaps even more fearful of being shown that they over-reacted. Politicians dread the citizenry they loathe waking up to the fact that they panicked. And the media has been so wedded to its narrative that they are never going to admit that their headlines were fake... and that the fear they engendered was entirely unnecessary. 

The media has been entirely supine - readily repeating whatever they were told by government officials and never questioning the wisdom of lockdowns, tests, death stats, vaccines, and masks.  Editors and journalists have shown no backbone whatsoever and deserve no further trust or credibility. What is evident is that no longer does media or government represent the needs and interests of the people.  Either they are collectively stupid and incompetent or they are crooked as hell (which I suspect) and complicit in perpetrating this massive hoax for nefarious objectives. 

I don't foresee a politically-comfortable answer, regrettably. I fear that the stage is already being set with talk of mutations to replay what just happened in 2020.  This is war... and a protracted battle to win back the world of January 2020 may be the only solution. 

Thursday, March 25, 2021

The Art of Dancing Through Fear

The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”

Alan Watts

Before the music starts I tell my partner I want to dance blindly. “When you’re ready, close your eyes,” Brad says, “but let the light shine through, don’t strain.”

We’re in an old school building, converted to an artists’ co-op, with glass windows stretching up to the cathedral ceiling with sunlight pouring in through beams that cross over our faces and make our blue eyes transparent.

We’re doing contact improvisational dance.

It’s based on a shared center of gravity and connection that we all innately have with each other. It’s about learning to trust again by subtracting the barriers we innocently construct to try to protect ourselves from getting hurt. Or as Rumi puts it, “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”

To me, this dance feels like: With every move, you have absolutely no idea what’s going to happen next.

Dancing with my eyes open feels familiar, but eyes shut? That’s a whole other monster. Maybe if I can be brave enough to dance blindly in our experimental dance lab, I can also drive more assuredly now through the crossroads of changes off the dance floor—which frankly, have me quite afraid.

We’re stretching and my stomach churns. Everything in me wants to retreat into my safe place and bolt the door. But as we warm-up, music cascading through the speakers, Brad smiling and clueless to the tsunami going on inside me, I realize the room feels softer. Maybe I feel softer. That safe place I made up in my mind is beginning to feel more like a prison than a haven—less like being free and more like sneaky self-sabotage.

Can the Unknown be a Safe Place to Explore? As we begin to move together, I flutter my eyelids open and closed but I’m not quite ready to shut them for real. We start slowly, sweeping across the wide empty space, feeling the coolness of the honey-colored wood floor on our bare feet. We round corners, take little leaps.

It’s a silent conversation in motion, flowing back and forth, like weaving a blanket with arms, legs, fingers and toes. Moving through a tapestry of possibility. Cutting the air with our bodies.

Have you ever taken a water bottle and tossed the water out into the air, like swinging a tennis racket? If so, did you notice how the fluid stretches across the atmosphere, thinning in one place, sparkly orbs leaping off in others, sunlit blob gliding, then finally descending into the grass?

It’s like flying.

Or dreaming while being awake.

You find out your body can do things you never trained for. Wild, creative energy emerges and wants to explore, push the known limits. A foot in a hand, then over his shoulders, gracefully gliding to the ground. Or galumphing. Head over heels. Spinning. Rolling.

But like physics, or backgammon, or drawing, building a beautiful home or stunt flying, or any other endeavor, you’re only free to make great artistic moves because you know the underlying structure holding it all together by heart. For me, the “dancing together smoothly” guidelines on and off the dance floor go something like this:

  • Remember you’re a God being.

  • Remember your partner is a God being.

  • Keep breathing.

  • Take risks.

  • Trust yourself, and forget about the opinions and warnings of anyone watching.

  • Take care of yourself first.

  • Treat your partner with the utmost respect. Your partner isn’t an object to be moved around, and neither are you.

  • Don’t plan out the next move, just stay with your inner knowing step-by-step.

  • Keep moving together through all of the objecting feelings and fears that bubble up in your head when you try new things and it feels alien.

Be gentle with yourself and your partner if you forget any of this (you can always hit the pause button and start over).

After feeling my place in the cavernous white room, I close my eyes completely. Light glows red through my eyelids. I hold on tightly, use my partner as a metric for where we are in the room. I stay nearer to the ground as it isn’t as far to fall. Turning makes my stomach churn. A lift off the ground makes me swimmy. Letting go of his hand, wobbly. My sense of smell heightens—a clean shirt nearby, artist’s paint still drying in the distance, lavender oil. Sweat.

Letting go is the scariest part. But it’s harder to cling and dance, and that gut-knot keeps the sea-saw of balance a hair’s breadth away, as does the voice screaming inside that says: Open your eyes, you’re gonna get hurt!

Fear and all her cousins clamor within me: Resistance. Holding on to what’s familiar. Wanting to put my feet on solid ground and forget this new adventure. Regretting that I ever started dancing like this to begin with. What was I thinking?

I start to try to plan out our next moves, to predict what’s coming and whether I should bail out before I do damage, or whether I should stay with the experiment.

But as the thoughts of how it needs to be for me to feel secure rush to my head, my body loses its flexibility, it’s innate knowingness. I become more rigid, awkward, trippy. I apologize to Brad weakly, laughing at myself nervously. Suddenly self-conscious. Thinking, “I’d better open my eyes or it will get so awkward my partner of over fifteen years may not want to dance with me anymore.”

But I keep my eyes closed.

“Trust yourself,” he says from behind me.

With those words an insight lights up within. I have been relying on the groundedness, sense of safety and robustness of my partner as my own center. Yet I couldn’t find it.

No matter how capable my partner, and he’s one of the best contact improv teachers in the world, the center has to come from within me. Only from that core place can it flow back and forth between us. From that place of knowing myself, I can know him, or what some people would call “mutuality.”

Two centered people can create absolutely anything together.

With the newness of dancing with eyes shut, I’d been looking for stability outside of myself.

As I shift my energy from Brad as my central point, back to my own self, he lifts me into the air. At that moment, everything changes. We spin around and around as I stretch out on his shoulder like a hang-glider, having no idea where we are in the room, yet feeling balanced and free, feeling the light shimmering through my eyelids.

I roll off his shoulder and put both feet on the floor—but then he lets go of my hand! I’m suddenly off balance again.

My partner slows but doesn’t stop, my teacher, my friend. He’s danced with eyes shut before.

I want to quit. It’s just too hard.

Instead, I go back to my breath, silently acknowledging the panicked feelings inside, and just letting them be felt without giving them meaning. I know my feelings aren’t telling me anything about what’s going to happen next, or what I’m capable of. I let the feelings wash over me and resist the urge to try to change them into something better.

We keep moving through the room. I can feel him right ahead of me, not touching, but clear and present.

Little by little the thoughts quiet as I shift back into my own centeredness.

I just let go.

Let go of the fear.

Let go of the resistance.

I fall into the present moment and after a while dancing blindly feels almost natural. I’m up in the air again, arms and legs circling, an airplane, feeling for the floor, then for the emptiness above. Feeling we could be anywhere in space, anywhere in time, suspended moment-to-moment.

The dance studio disappears and it’s like dancing with the whole universe—the world beyond the field of vision. The past folded in on itself, the future nonexistent. We are nothing less than two connected beings moving through infinite space.

by Dorothy Kolomeisky on March 4, 2020, in upliftconnect.com

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

A Gray Revolution in a Youth-Obsessed World

Ageism is society’s last acceptable “ism” — but there’s cause for optimism.  Older Americans are beginning to rebel against a youth-obsessed culture. They want to be valued and accepted for who they are, embracing “elderhood” as the next chapter after adulthood, and extolling the wisdom and experience that comes with aches and wrinkles.

This Gray Revolution, like many other social movements before it, is being driven by workers. Across the U.S., older employees are prodding their organizations to promote age diversity with the same initiative and interest awarded to gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation and disability. They are pushing for a place and a purpose within an organization that reflects and respects their skills and expertise — and the most innovative institutions, companies and CEOs will either lead, follow or get out of the way.

One clear sign of an age-appropriate organization is inter-generational cooperation — programs and teams where younger workers learn from elders and vice versa. Achieving this requires defiance of conventional stereotypes: CEOs, directors, managers and HR departments all must trash the false, ageist tropes that older workers are less reliable, less savvy and less flexible, or that they are more expensive and steal jobs from able-bodied youth. It means eliminating job descriptions that skirt age-discrimination laws with profiling language such as “digital native,” “cultural fit” or “five to seven years of experience.”

“It’s absurd that experience has become a liability,” says activist Ashton Applewhite, author of “This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism.”  Meaningful change is slow, but older people have time on their side. Americans are living and working longer, while younger generations tend to be multicultural and pluralistic in their worldview. Many young people also are eager to connect with experienced older mentors. There’s a good chance that future leaders among them will carry these progressive social values into positions of power.

For now, though, it’s still early days. It’s the rare company that includes age in its annual diversity report, for example. “We have a lot of work to do to reclaim the idea of elder wisdom and why we should be valuing what older people bring,” says Marci Alboher, a vice president at Encore.org, a nonprofit that facilitates cross-generational interaction. “We’re stuck in a mindset that people should be exiting the stage in their 50s and 60s. That is just the moment when they could be most valuable.”

Older workers are highly valuable. They bring judgment, balance and perspective to an organization. They tend to stick around longer than their job-hopping, ladder-climbing counterparts. Older employees typically aren’t angling for promotions and view younger co-workers not as threats but as mentoring opportunities. Moreover, research shows that when a company facilitates the exchange of ideas and initiatives across generations, its productivity, profitability and worker morale all improve.

“With the changing nature of the economy to a technology economy, so many things are being displaced,” says gerontologist Paul Irving, chairman of the Milken Institute Center for the Future of Aging. “The one thing that may be hardest to displace is wisdom.”

Not every older person is a Yoda wannabe, of course. Many of us go to extremes to deny that we are old or will be. Yet denial only weakens our power to combat ageism in others — and in ourselves. That’s one reason why inter-generational initiatives and alliances are so critical: Fostering cooperation between young and old allows knowledge and talent to shine regardless of age.

“To create a culture of cooperation and respect, you have to make sure that older workers have the opportunity to gain new skills and stay current,” says Martha Deevy, a senior research scholar at the Stanford Center of Longevity at Stanford University. “Set up environments where the generations are able to share what they know.”

In this way, she adds, “Younger people see how the company is dealing with older people, and older workers are learning new skills, contributing, and able to mentor.”  Such forward-thinking breaks down ageist barriers, which divide not just the workplace but society itself — from the health care we receive to the entertainment and media we consume.

After all, aging is the one thing we all share — as well as, for many, the fear of it. Marketers and advertising agencies (where the average age on a creative team is 28) seize on this anxiety with palliative platitudes: “You’re as young as you feel”; “60 is the new 40” and other cringe-worthy clich├ęs aim to sell us potions with the promise that looking and feeling older only happens to other people.

“We’re all ageist,” adds Applewhite. “Prejudice is based on ‘othering.’ The ‘other’ is our older self. The solution is for people of all ages to acknowledge that they are getting older.”  People can overcome their own age bias with greater awareness and employers can do so as well. Start by acknowledging and accepting the older worker with the enthusiasm and encouragement shown to employees whose careers are in front of them. After all, they may be one and the same — nowadays a 55-year-old employee, for example, could easily stay with an organization for another 25 years.

“People arrive at old age healthy and are able to stay healthy, and with health we unleash the potential for older adults to contribute to society,” says geriatrician Laura Fried, director of Columbia University’s Columbia Aging Center. “We’ve never had this before; we don’t yet appreciate what it could offer.”

It’s clear what older people can offer the workplace, but what can the workplace offer them? That’s where organizations will have to think outside the box, because there’s never before been a time where managers are as likely to supervise a 65-year-old as they are a 25-year-old.

“Can we get out of our notion that people are supposed to be working and collaborating only with people of the same age?” says gerontologist Ken Dychtwald, founder and CEO of Age Wave and co-author of “What Retirees Want: A Holistic View of Life’s Third Age.”

“Find common ground,” he adds. “We need to see more of it, show more of it.”  Organizations would do well to provide middle-aged and older employees with purpose as well as a paycheck — chiefly opportunities to coach co-workers and to educate and recreate themselves.

“There is something special about the connection between older and younger people,” the Milken Institute’s Irving observes. “The learning flows both ways. How do we get these ideas in front of people who can actually make a difference? What it takes is leadership. You need leaders to step up.”

Chip Conley, Airbnb’s Strategic Advisor for Hospitality & Leadership and the author of “Wisdom@Work: The Making of a Modern Elder,” has picked up this mantle. Conley coined the word “mentern” to describe an older person who exhibits both a mentor’s mastery and an intern’s inquisitiveness — a dual role that can add value to a receptive organization.

He thinks big about a future where older workers are encouraged to continually reinvent themselves. “Why not give people the ability to save for their own midlife re-education?” asks Conley, who parlayed his own career experience to found the Modern Elder Academy, a midlife “wisdom school” for people to envision and enact the second half of life.

“Wouldn’t it be interesting,” he adds, “if someone could take a ‘gap year’ at age 50 and know they could go back [to their organization], re-trained and re-skilled? Same seed, different soil.”  These are the right questions for organizations to ask as populations age. Training and retraining is key to a functioning multi-generational workforce. Shorter work weeks, fresh assignments, flexible schedules and the ability to work from home are crucial as well. These employee perks and more were being implemented even before the COVID-19 pandemic, which likely will only accelerate the trends.

Truly cutting-edge employers that can afford to do so could put these ideas into action. For example, what if organizations allowed employees to set aside a portion of their pretax earnings for midlife or elder learning? What if workers could take a sabbatical for this exploration — a year or even just a few months — knowing their job is safe? Such open-ended opportunities could be exactly what’s needed to nourish an appreciative employee of any age. When it’s time for older workers to leave the staff, they can do so with grace and gratitude, or maybe even stay on as wise counselors.

“We’ve been in this notion of talent being driven by youth,” Dychtwald says. Prior to the 20th century, he adds, “The older you were the wiser you were. People added years to their age. The 20th century was carried away by youth. Where’s the gray?”

The gray army is here, and younger allies increasingly will fight alongside their elders because these workplace changes benefit them, too. Organizations that join the cause to help older employees extend their careers and engage with peers across generations also signal younger staff that they matter. While many employers undoubtedly will balk at these initiatives, one only has to look to the women’s movement, for example, to see the potential for a similar, global shift about the value and ability of older people.

“Early adopters and innovation doesn’t always start in a garage with young people,” Dychtwald says. “Some of the things meant to be accommodating to the older worker are going to create a revolution in work for everyone.

by Jonathan Burton on March 23, 2021 at marketwatch.com

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Van Gogh on Fear and Taking Risks

From an impassioned letter to his brother Theo, found in Ever Yours: The Essential Letters on October 2, 1884, Van Gogh writes:

If one wants to be active, one mustn’t be afraid to do something wrong sometimes, not afraid to lapse into some mistakes. To be good — many people think that they’ll achieve it by doing no harm — and that’s a lie… That leads to stagnation, to mediocrity. Just slap something on it when you see a blank canvas staring at you with a sort of imbecility.

You don’t know how paralyzing it is, that stare from a blank canvas that says to the painter you can’t do anything. The canvas has an idiotic stare, and mesmerizes some painters so that they turn into idiots themselves.

Many painters are afraid of the blank canvas, but the blank canvas IS AFRAID of the truly passionate painter who dares — and who has once broken the spell of “you can’t.”

Life itself likewise always turns towards one an infinitely meaningless, discouraging, dispiriting blank side on which there is nothing, any more than on a blank canvas.

But however meaningless and vain, however dead life appears, the man of faith, of energy, of warmth, and who knows something, doesn’t let himself be fobbed off like that. He steps in and does something, and hangs on to that, in short, breaks, “violates”…

Vincent van Gogh (March 30, 1853–July 29, 1890)

Monday, March 22, 2021

Unity, Healing, and Respect

Respect is extremely important, and if we want to receive respect, it is equally important to show the same amount of respect to others. – Don Miguel Ruiz

It is always sad when someone dies but what saddens me more is the mean, offensive, and licentious response from people regarding the passing of Rush Limbaugh. As a simple means of respect for his family, friends, and colleagues wouldn’t it be more prudent and compelling to say nothing at all if all someone has to offer is an expression of their hatred? Since Limbaugh was a far-right conservative it becomes glaringly obvious that the hatred expressed in the comments section of the linked article is shared by far-left democrats. How people can dare to be so callous at the moment of this man’s death, and with such audacity, is beyond me. Do people not even consider for one moment that his family and friends who read these hateful comments will be hurt even further during this time of their mourning?

Let me make it clear that I am not speaking as a democrat or a republican, I am speaking as a human being. If unity and healing are the values that America claims to stand behind then akin to Gandhi’s quote above, how can we expect to receive or achieve unity and healing if we cannot collectively cultivate a sense of unity and healing. How can unity be achieved when division has been so deeply ingrained in the minds of people? How can healing occur when half of the American population has been scorned and essentially cancelled because they don’t all believe in the same exact thing? If we are to truly unite and heal, we cannot rely upon someone to do it for us, we must each take responsibility through kindness and compassion. In unity there is no room for hatred and condemnation.

We are being challenged to the core of our being; our very souls are being desecrated. Not the souls of the democrats, not the souls of the republicans; the souls of the people. Does anyone else out there see this current state of affairs for what it truly is? Human beings are being pitted against each other while the government sits back and has a good laugh as we fight against each other. This only makes their jobs easy as we, the people, expeditiously facilitate their agenda. The rewriting of history, internet censorship, cancel culture, white privilege, black privilege, provocation, fear, isolation, business shut-downs, school closures, a global pandemic, violent riots called peaceful protests, peaceful protests turning violent, elitism, egalitarianism, and a million other things all unfolding at once.

If you want to rise up and fight then it should not be against each other. If you want to express your anger it should not be through contentious and immature disrespect. If you want to stand by your own personal truth it should not be through the condemnation of those who do not agree. I feel that America, as a very young country compared to the rest of the world, is experiencing growing pains. Instead of fighting against each other, why not consider that we will rise up in our power as a strong and flourishing nation through solidarity rather than discord. We must each resolve to make this a positive and co-creative reality because if we do not, the government will impose its own version of reality upon us and in that, we potentially all stand to lose. Rather than devolve into a state of “one-mind” through forceful means of imposition, let’s celebrate and expand this extravagant state of diversity that allows our nation to shine in all of its magnificence, grandeur, and freedom.

Adapted from the blog of Lorraine Voss at FemaleWarrior.net on February 17, 2021

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Unity versus Solidarity

The warrior seeks impeccability in his own eyes and calls that humbleness. The average man is hooked to his fellow men, while the warrior is hooked only to himself. You’re after the self-confidence of the average man, when you should be after the humbleness of a warrior. The difference between the two is remarkable. – Carlos Castaneda, Tales of Power

The world is reeling from the infiltration of the predator having become so immense, the biggest humanity has ever experienced and the current state of frustration is due to so many corrupt and deceitful things that are deeply rooted in centuries old Illuminati and Deep State conditioning and control. What we need now is not unity, it’s solidarity. While unity is unaccountable oneness and the total buy-in of single-mindedness for one single organized effort for a common purpose, solidarity is a countable bond of unity between individuals united around a common goal. That said, solidarity will unite everyone in their effort to maintain their individuality without blindly acquiescing in “unity” for a one-mind, same-mind existence. Fine line indeed.

Freedom has been the backbone of existence: Freedom from the Machine, Personal Freedom, Freedom from the Man-Made Matrix, Freedom from the Dominant Paradigm, Freedom from the Predator, Freedom from the Foreign Installation, Freedom from the voices in your head, Freedom from Routines, Habits, and Patterns, Freedom from Illusion, Freedom from Perception, Freedom from Suffering, Freedom from the Mold of Man, Evolutionary Freedom, Freedom from the Social Order, Freedom from Dogma, Freedom from the Karmic Wheel of Life and Rebirth, Freedom from the Madness. And so it goes.

Freedom is the most basic drive to existence (some might call this a purpose) and is the so-called contract to adhere to in an attempt and passion to keep humanity strong in its connection to what is authentic and real. What has always mattered is that we are not held prisoner by the greedy few who would attempt to consume us in ensuring their false sense of power grows by exerting so much control upon us until we eventually acquiesce and become like them. Hiding behind masks, wolves in sheep’s clothing. How very fitting.

This past year with Covid and the election has been extremely challenging for any who are warriors of freedom. I have written several recent articles expressing this, predominantly on Covid and the loss of free speech and believe me when I tell you, there is so much more I wanted to write, to express, to say. I have refrained because experiences with people, including friends I have known for a long time as warriors of freedom and who I trusted have raised their voices and yelled at me when I expressed my opinion, put their hands over their ears if I debated something, or pounded their fists on tables to prevent me from expressing my thoughts. I quickly learned that it was best to shut-up and instead of fighting or arguing I chose to listen to them and give them my love. This is the best way to preserve my integrity, to not give them power or cause them to lose energy. Utter impeccability.

The majority of people rarely take the time to do research to determine what it is that will serve the greater good of the whole. Instead, they either do what their friends are doing or do the things that best serve them in the moment. Selfishness replaces selflessness without the ability to see any ripple effects that might affect the greater whole.

In Dr. King’s quote, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.” There has been not greater time on this planet than now to diffuse the fear and anger by walking in love and light. I am not going to fight for my freedom by fighting. There is nothing to fight for, we are already free. The best any of us can do is to continually remind ourselves to remain unplugged and disengaged from an illusory fight.

We have to remember that we came to this earth to play, to thrive. So play! Thrive! By connecting with the earth I am returning my focus to higher consciousness and my connection to the eternal with the knowledge that this life is but a short stop on the highway of universal existence. Transcendence! What a long strange trip it’s been.

Adapted from the blog of Lorraine Voss at FemaleWarrior.net on January 22, 2021

Saturday, March 20, 2021

How I Became a Madman

You ask me how I became a madman. It happened thus: One day, long before many gods were born, I woke from a deep sleep and found all my masks were stolen - the seven masks I have fashioned and worn in seven lives - I ran maskless through the crowded streets shouting, “Thieves, thieves, the cursed thieves.”

Men and women laughed at me and some ran to their houses in fear of me.

And when I reached the market place, a youth standing on a house-top cried, “He is a madman.” I looked up to behold him; the sun kissed my own naked face for the first time. For the first time the sun kissed my own naked face and my soul was inflamed with love for the sun, and I wanted my masks no more. And as if in a trance I cried, “Blessed, blessed are the thieves who stole my masks.”

Thus I became a madman.

And I have found both freedom and safety in my madness; the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us.

But let me not be too proud of my safety. Even a thief in a jail is safe from another thief.

by Kahlil Gibran

Friday, March 19, 2021

A Playful Reminder

I have been on the fence about continuing to run races for years. As a pure expression of youthful play, running has been my mainstay for over 53 years without much interruption. It is not a sport, nor an avocation, but has become a lifestyle – a defining activity that best characterizes who I am. I hope always to be able to lace up my shoes and head out the door for a jaunt through the woods, but I find myself caring less and less about the result of time or the social rewards of some measured event. Nonetheless, it is difficult to break a lifelong pattern of toeing the line and striving to compete... or at least to do my best without excuse.

So I have continued to sign up for racing events and travel to new venues to challenge myself and enjoy the camaraderie of others like me. My heart says “do it”; my instincts tell me it is time to move on. Scripture runs through my head:

When I was a child, I spoke like a child,

I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.

When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.

1 Corinthians 13:11

But I wish always to be as a child – resilient and open and playful. So I dig deeper and query my higher self as to what it is that I need now give up.

Traveling to coal country in West Virginia, I once again pinned a race number on my shorts to take on a challenge that has had me curious for some time – to see how far I could run uninterrupted for two days. When I received my race bib at check-in I was stopped in my tracks - #222.

Angel numbers appear in my life over and over again. They are not serendipitous; I deem them to be pointed messages from the spiritual world to guide me or reinforce the choices I am making. The number 222 is a message of balance and harmony. Either the angels were encouraging me to pursue this challenge, or they were concurring with my instincts to leave behind this pursuit in order to achieve a higher balance.

While I am curious about the limits of physical expression as an old guy, am I getting stuck in old patterns of thinking and behavior and holding myself back from the progression of my soul's path by continuing to pursue “childish” ambitions? I read the message of my bib number 222 as a spiritual smack upside the head. It was a clear reminder that I needed to rebalance.

A sinus headache (by my own choice: we create our own reality: always) forced me to abandon the event early on, so I was not able to pursue an answer to my wonderment about running for two days straight. Immediately I felt more relief than any sense of failure or abandonment or unfulfillment. My instincts celebrate my decision to move beyond “childish” ways.

Will I quit running? Absolutely not. I look forward with passion to a continued lifetime of running. Will I abandon racing cold turkey and abstain from further competitive challenges from now on? Absolutely not. But I will trim those that supersede my concept of play. If an event is playful, I shall continue to toe the line and abandon myself to reckless joy. If the event entails egregious suffering to accomplish a finish, this I shall leave behind.

While suffering is necessary for all growth, I have already learned the lessons that suffering during races has to teach. I leave that experience for those who still need to go out on that limb to retrieve the lessons it teaches. There are other lessons I need to pursue; my instincts tell me they are no longer to be found from racing long and hard.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Immediately Halt All Covid-19 Mass Vaccinations

 

Open Letter to the WHO on March 12, 2021, by Geert Vanden Bossche, DMV, PhD, independent virologist and vaccine expert, formerly employed at GAVI and The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

To all authorities, scientists and experts around the world, to whom this concerns: the entire world population.

I am all but an antivaxxer. As a scientist I do not usually appeal to any platform of this kind to make a stand on vaccine-related topics. As a dedicated virologist and vaccine expert I only make an exception when health authorities allow vaccines to be administered in ways that threaten public health, most certainly when scientific evidence is being ignored.

The present extremely critical situation forces me to spread this emergency call. As the unprecedented extent of human intervention in the Covid-19 pandemic is now at risk of resulting in a global catastrophe without equal, this call cannot sound loudly and strongly enough.

As stated, I am not against vaccination. On the contrary, I can assure you that each of the current vaccines have been designed, developed and manufactured by brilliant and competent scientists. However, this type of prophylactic vaccines are completely inappropriate, and even highly dangerous, when used in mass vaccination campaigns during a viral pandemic.

Vaccinologists, scientists and clinicians are blinded by the positive short-term effects in individual patents, but don’t seem to bother about the disastrous consequences for global health. Unless I am scientifically proven wrong, it is difficult to understand how current human interventions will prevent circulating variants from turning into a wild monster.

Racing against the clock, I am completing my scientific manuscript, the publication of which is, unfortunately, likely to come too late given the ever increasing threat from rapidly spreading, highly infectious variants. This is why I decided to already post a summary of my findings as well as my keynote speech at the recent Vaccine Summit in Ohio on LinkedIn.

Last Monday, I provided international health organizations, including the WHO, with my analysis of the current pandemic as based on scientifically informed insights in the immune biology of Covid-19. Given the level of emergency, I urged them to consider my concerns and to initiate a debate on the detrimental consequences of further ‘viral immune escape’.

For those who are no experts in this field, I am attaching below a more accessible and comprehensible version of the science behind this insidious phenomenon.

While there is no time to spare, I have not received any feedback thus far. Experts and politicians have remained silent while obviously still eager to talk about relaxing infection prevention rules and ‘springtime freedom’. My statements are based on nothing else but science. They shall only be contradicted by science.

While one can barely make any incorrect scientific statements without being criticized by peers, it seems like the elite of scientists who are currently advising our world leaders prefer to stay silent. Sufficient scientific evidence has been brought to the table.

Unfortunately, it remains untouched by those who have the power to act. How long can one ignore the problem when there is at present massive evidence that viral immune escape is now threatening humanity? We can hardly say we didn’t know – or were not warned.

In this agonizing letter I put all of my reputation and credibility at stake. I expect from you, guardians of mankind, at least the same. It is of utmost urgency. Do open the debate. By all means: turn the tide!

Why mass vaccination amidst a pandemic creates an irrepressible monster

THE key question is: why does nobody seem to bother about viral immune escape? Let me try to explain this by means of a more easily understood phenomenon: Antimicrobial resistance. One can easily extrapolate this scourge to resistance to our self-made ‘antiviral antibiotics’. Indeed, antibodies (Abs) produced by our own immune system can be considered self-made antiviral antibiotics, regardless of whether they are part of our innate immune system (so-called ‘natural’ Abs’) or elicited in response to specific pathogens (resulting in so-called ‘acquired’ Abs).

Natural Abs are not germ-specific whereas acquired Abs are specifically directed at the invading pathogen. At birth, our innate immune system is ‘unexperienced’ but well-established. It protects us from a multitude of pathogens, thereby preventing these pathogens from causing disease.

As the innate immune system cannot remember the pathogens it encountered (innate immunity has no so-called ‘immunological memory’), we can only continue to rely on it provided we keep it ‘trained’ well enough.

Training is achieved by regular exposure to a myriad of environmental agents, including pathogens. However, as we age, we will increasingly face situations where our innate immunity (often called ‘the first line of immune defense’) is not strong enough to halt the pathogen at the portal of entry (mostly mucosal barriers like respiratory or intestinal epithelia).

When this happens, the immune system has to rely on more specialized effectors of our immune system (i.e., antigen-specific Abs and T cells) to fight the pathogen. So, as we grow up, we increasingly mount pathogen-specific immunity, including highly specific Abs. As those have stronger affinity for the pathogen (e.g., virus) and can reach high concentrations, they can quite easily out-compete our natural Abs for binding to the pathogen/virus.

It is precisely this type of highly specific, high affinity Abs that current Covid-19 vaccines are inducing. Of course, the noble purpose of these Abs is to protect us against Covid-19. So, why then should there be a major concern using these vaccines to fight Covid-19?

Well, similar to the rules applying to classical antimicrobial antibiotics, it is paramount that our self-made ‘antiviral antibiotics’ are made available in sufficient concentration and are tailored at the specific features of our enemy.

This is why in case of bacterial disease it is critical to not only chose the right type of antibiotic (based on the results from an antibiogram) but to also take the antibiotic for long enough (according to the prescription).

Failure to comply with these requirements is at risk of granting microbes a chance to survive and hence, may cause the disease to fare up. A very similar mechanism may also apply to viruses, especially to viruses that can easily and rapidly mutate (which is, for example, the case with Coronaviruses); when the pressure exerted by the army’s (read: population’s) immune defense starts to threaten viral replication and transmission, the virus will take on another coat so that it can no longer be easily recognized and, therefore, attacked by the host immune system. The virus is now able to escape immunity (so-called: ‘immune escape’).

However, the virus can only rely on this strategy provided it still has room enough to replicate. Viruses, in contrast to the majority of bacteria, must rely on living host cells to replicate. This is why the occurrence of ‘escape mutants’ isn’t too worrisome as long as the likelihood for these variants to rapidly find another host is quite remote. However, that’s not particularly the case during a viral pandemic!

During a pandemic, the virus is spreading all over the globe with many subjects shedding and transmitting the virus (even including asymptomatic ‘carriers’). The higher the viral load, the higher the likelihood for the virus to bump into subjects who haven’t been infected yet or who were infected but didn’t develop symptoms. Unless they are sufficiently protected by their innate immune defense (through natural Abs), they will catch Covid-19 disease as they cannot rely on other, i.e., acquired Abs.

It has been extensively reported, indeed, that the increase in S (spike)-specific Abs in asymptomatically infected people is rather limited and only short-lived. Furthermore, these Abs have not achieved full maturity.

The combination of viral infection on a background of suboptimal Ab maturity and concentration enables the virus to select mutations allowing it to escape the immune pressure. The selection of those mutations preferably occurs in the S protein as this is the viral protein that is responsible for viral infectiousness.

As the selected mutations endow the virus with increased infectious capacity, it now becomes much easier for the virus to cause severe disease in infected subjects. The more people develop symptomatic disease, the better the virus can secure its propagation and perpetuation (people who get severe disease will shed more virus and for a longer period of time than asymptomatically infected subjects do).

Unfortunately, enough, the short-lived rise in S-specific Abs does, however, surface to bypass people’s innate/natural Ab. Those are put out of business as their affinity for S is lower than the affinity of S-specific Abs. This is to say that with an increasing rate of infection in the population, the number of subjects who get infected while experiencing a momentary increase in S-specific Abs will steadily increase.

Consequently, the number of subjects who get infected while experiencing a momentary decrease in their innate immunity will increase. As a result, a steadily increasing number of subjects will become more susceptible to getting severe disease instead of showing only mild symptoms (i.e., limited to the upper respiratory tract) or no symptoms at all.

During a pandemic, especially youngsters will be affected by this evolution as their natural Abs are not yet largely suppressed by a panoply of ‘acquired’, antigen-specific Abs. Natural Abs, and natural immunity in general, play a critical role in protecting us from pathogens as they constitute our first line of immune defense. In contrast to acquired immunity, innate immune responses protect against a large spectrum of pathogens (so don’t compromise or sacrifice your innate immune defense!).

Because natural Abs and innate immune cells recognize a diversified spectrum of foreign (i.e., non-self) agents (only some of which have pathogenic potential), it’s important, indeed, to keep it sufficiently exposed to environmental challenges.

By keeping the innate immune system (which, unfortunately, has no memory!) TRAINED, we can much more easily resist germs which have real pathogenic potential. It has, for example, been reported and scientifically proven that exposure to other, quite harmless Coronaviruses causing a ‘common cold ’ can provide protection, although short-lived, against Covid-19 and its loyal henchmen (i.e., the more infectious variants).

Suppression of innate immunity, especially in the younger age groups, can, therefore, become very problematic. There can be no doubt that lack of exposure due to stringent containment measures implemented as of the beginning of the pandemic has not been beneficial to keeping people’s innate immune system well trained.

As if this was not already heavily compromising innate immune defense in this population segment, there comes yet another force into play that will dramatically enhance morbidity and mortality rates in the younger age groups: MASS VACCINATION of the ELDERLY.

The more extensively the later age group will be vaccinated and hence, protected, the more the virus is forced to continue causing disease in younger age groups.

This is only going to be possible provided it escapes to the S-specific Abs that are momentarily raised in previously asymptomatically infected subjects. If the virus manages to do so, it can benefit from the (momentarily) suppressed innate immunity, thereby causing disease in an increasing number of these subjects and ensuring its own propagation.

Selecting targeted mutations in the S protein is, therefore, the way to go in order for the virus to enhance its infectiousness in candidates that are prone to getting the disease because of a transient weakness of their innate immune defense.

But in the meantime, we’re also facing a huge problem in vaccinated people as they’re now more and more confronted with infectious variants displaying a type of S protein that is increasingly different from the S edition comprised with the vaccine (the later edition originates from the original, much less infectious strain at the beginning of the pandemic).

The more variants become infectious (i.e., as a result of blocking access of the virus to the vaccinated segment of the population), the less vaccinal Abs will protect. Already now, lack of protection is leading to viral shedding and transmission in vaccine recipients who are exposed to these more infectious strains (which, by the way, increasingly dominate the field).

This is how we are currently turning vaccines into asymptomatic carriers shedding infectious variants.

At some point, in a likely very near future, it’s going to become more profitable (in term of ‘return on selection investment’) for the virus to just add another few mutations (maybe just one or two) to the S protein of viral variants (already endowed with multiple mutations enhancing infectiousness) in an attempt to further strengthen its binding to the receptor (ACE-2) expressed on the surface of permissive epithelial cells.

This will now allow the new variant to out-compete vaccinal Abs for binding to the ACE receptor. This is to say that at this stage, it would only take very few additional targeted mutations within the viral receptor-binding domain to fully resist S-specific ant-Covid-19 Abs, regardless whether the later are elicited by the vaccine or by natural infection.

At that stage, the virus will, indeed, have managed to gain access to a huge reservoir of subjects who have now become highly susceptible to disease as their S-specific Abs have now become useless in terms of protection but still manage to provide for long-lived suppression of their innate immunity (i.e., natural infection, and especially vaccination, elicit relatively long-lived specific Ab titers). The susceptible reservoir comprises both, vaccinated people and those who’re left with sufficient S-specific Abs due to previous Covid-19 disease).So, MISSION

ACCOMPLISHED for Covid-19 but a DISASTROUS SITUATION for all vaccinated subjects and Covid-19 seropositive people as they’ve now lost both, their acquired and innate immune defense against Covid-19 (while highly infectious strains are circulating!).

That’s ‘one small step for the virus, one giant catastrophe for mankind’, which is to say that we’ll have whipped up the virus in the younger population up to a level that it now takes little effort for Covid-19 to transform into a highly infectious virus that completely ignores both the innate arm of our immune system as well as the adaptive/acquired one (regardless of whether the acquired Abs resulted from vaccination or natural infection).

The effort for the virus is now becoming even more negligible given that many vaccine recipients are now exposed to highly infectious viral variants while having received only a single shot of the vaccine.

Hence, they are endowed with Abs that have not yet acquired optimal functionality. There is no need to explain that this is just going to further enhance immune escape. Basically, we’ll very soon be confronted with a super-infectious virus that completely resists our most precious defense mechanism: The human immune system.

From all of the above, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to imagine how the consequences of the extensive and erroneous human intervention in this pandemic are not going to wipe out large parts of our human population.

One could only think of very few other strategies to achieve the same level of efficiency in turning a relatively harmless virus into a bioweapon of mass destruction.

It’s certainly also worth mentioning that mutations in the S protein (i.e., exactly the same protein that is subject to selection of escape mutations) are known to enable Coronaviruses to cross species barriers.

This is to say that the risk that vaccine-mediated immune escape could allow the virus to jump to other animal species, especially industrial livestock (e.g., pig and poultry farms), is not negligible. These species are already known to host several different Coronaviruses and are usually housed in farms with high stocking density.

Similar to the situation with influenza virus, these species could than serve as an additional reservoir for SARS-COVID-2 virus.

As pathogens have co-evolved with the host immune system, natural pandemics of acute self-limiting viral infections have been shaped such as to take a toll on human lives that is not higher than strictly required.

Due to human intervention, the course of this pandemic has been thoroughly disturbed as of the very beginning. Widespread and stringent infection prevention measures combined with mass vaccination campaigns using inadequate vaccines will undoubtedly lead to a situation where the pandemic is getting increasingly ‘out of control’.

Paradoxically, the only intervention that could offer a perspective to end this pandemic (other than to let it run its disastrous course) is …VACCINATION. Of course, the type of vaccines to be used would be completely different of conventional vaccines in that they’re not inducing the usual suspects, i.e., B and T cells, but NK cells.

There is, indeed, compelling scientific evidence that these cells play a key role in facilitating complete elimination of Covid-19 at an early stage of infection in asymptomatically infected subjects.

NK cells are part of the cellular arm of our innate immune system and, alike natural Abs, they are capable of recognizing and attacking a broad and diversified spectrum of pathogenic agents.

There is a sound scientific rationale to assume that it is possible to ‘prime’ NK cells in ways for them to recognize and kill Coronaviruses at large (include all their variants) at an early stage of infection. NK cells have increasingly been described to be endowed with the capacity to acquire immunological memory.

By educating these cells in ways that enable them to durably recognize and target Coronavirus-infected cells, our immune system could be perfectly armed for a targeted attack to the universe of Coronaviruses prior to exposure.

As NK cell-based immune defense provides sterilizing immunity and allows for broad-spectrum and fast protection, it is reasonable to assume that harnessing our innate immune cells is going to be the only type of human intervention left to halt the dangerous spread of highly infectious Covid-19 variants.

If we, human beings, are committed to perpetuating our species, we have no choice left but to eradicate these highly infectious viral variants. This will, indeed, require large vaccination campaigns. However, NK cell-based vaccines will primarily enable our natural immunity to be better prepared (memory!) and to induce herd immunity (which is exactly the opposite of what current Covid-19 vaccines do as those increasingly turn vaccine recipients into asymptomatic carriers who are shedding virus).

So, there is not one second left for gears to be switched and to replace the current killer vaccines by life-saving vaccines.

I am appealing to the WHO and all stakeholders involved, no matter their conviction, to immediately declare such action as THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY OF INTERNATIONAL CONCERN.

The Spartan Warrior in Me

I must have been a Spartan warrior in a former life. It is a lifestyle and mindset that suits me, and maybe always has. Being a Spartan in...