A Heart to Heart
This article is the last in the series, and it’s meant to be the heart of the series. It seems that based on reader reactions some of the information in the previous articles seemed somewhat frightening to people. Yet this is the opposite of how I would want anyone to feel.
I felt pulled to write on this topic NOT because I woke up one morning and suddenly had a strong urge to talk about high-level financial/military issues – which are definitely not my cup of tea – but because of a much larger issue behind these issues that does interest me.
The biggest weapon in the arsenal of those who misuse us is our fear. Fear blocks our awareness of how great we are, and how we can do anything. Our biggest weapon is courage – walking into that fear so that it starts to disappear. This is true whether we’re talking about misuse by a boyfriend/girlfriend, a husband/wife, a friend/family member, or a military-industrial complex.
So this article will not be so much about the military-industrial complex, but about lessening fear’s grip on all of us by pointing out the power for positive change that is inside of us all. I’m a firm believer that when we do this, the things that need “demystified” in our world happen automatically.
Below, I’ve included some information on a number of studies and movements that highlight just how awesome, powerful and courageous we really are!
We have all heard the information about what a powerful military we have. But what about the information on our vast inner strength?
There have been many studies conducted that show the great world shifts we create when we put our minds and our Souls together for the common good. Here’s a few highlights:
In this landmark 1974 observational study, 7,000 people in three locations worldwide meditated and prayed for three weeks, in the morning and evening. According to the Rand Corporation, “acts of global terrorism resulting in fatalities and injuries were reduced by 72%.”
- The Maharishi Effect
The Maharishi Effect is named after the founder of the Transcendental Mediation technique, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. It has been shown to help not only with inner peace, but outer peace as well. One example of this is a 1993 study in Washington D.C. by the National Demonstration Project to Reduce Violent Crime and Improve Governmental Effectiveness. It was found that 4,000 people participating in Transcendental Meditation in the capital for 7-8 weeks reduced violent crime in the city by 23.3%.
Movements for Change
Here’s a movement that has insisted on fair pay that keeps up with inflation. With the ringing in of the New Year, they’re celebrating the 14 states that raised their minimum wage as of January 1st, as well as the three others that plan to follow suit later in the year.
But the Fight for $15 hasn’t stopped there. They are also interested in making sure people know about a growing schism: the increasing wealth of the very few ultra rich and the startling increase in the very poor, even over the last 5 years.
This organization wants to ensure not just that workers are paid fair – but that attention is paid to the fact that smaller companies are also struggling to pay their bills. In this vein, rules are being written into the new wage increase laws that exempt small to medium-sized businesses. A few examples are the Massachusetts and New York bills.
The Fight for $15 movement has helped win pay raises for over 11 million workers and focused attention back on the power of people to create a better world.
- The Buy Local Movement
One major benefit of having the Fight for $15 movement taking place at the same time as the Buy Local movement is that the worker wage boosts are increasingly being spent on small to medium-sized local businesses. This enables these business owners to pay a living wage to their workers while keeping business profits flowing.
According to Julia Lyon in CNN Money, more than 150 small business alliances have sprouted up across the country in recent years to promote the benefits of putting our money in the hands of those who are part of our local community. These alliances allow the businesses to pool their money for advertising and thus compete with the corporate giants. Because of their efforts local and regional food sales alone grew by $1.3 billion between 2008 and 2012.
But it isn’t just increased advertising that has drawn consumers into the Buy Local philosophy – it’s the understanding that those in our communities actually care about our well-being. With organizations such as Monsanto being sued for poisoning our food supply, people have turned to spending their hard-earned dollars with businesses who not only profit from their spending, but who are also invested in the people in their neighborhood.
To get started in your own community, check out The LocalHarvest national directory. Its’ website “lists over 30,000 family farms and farmers markets, along with restaurants and grocery stores that feature local food.”
This united movement provides a gathering place on Twitter for social activists to both find and promote petitions and activities aimed at empowering We the People. They are a group of 100 organizations who encompass a wide array of social justice causes. The groups plan on coming together in our nation’s capital this April to demand campaign finance and voting reform in order to knock down the barriers that prevent everyday Americans from having a voice.
Truth in Media
I’m going to share with you the most surprising lesson I was taught when I started on the path to enlightenment. It seemed so….well, frankly unrelated to my goals that I ignored it for some time. Yet over and over I heard the same advice from people who’d switched their life around from blase to purpose-filled:
- “Turn off your TV.”
As a late bloomer to the “turn off your TV” movement, I can tell you that I can both understand how it seems totally unrelated to the pursuit of happiness and self-empowerment, and how it is actually directly related.
It’s everything. Shutting off the TV has opened up my life tremendously by freeing up time to pursue my dreams and by revealing the vast number of people who are already creating a more positive world – information that is often sorely lacking on mainstream media. Everyone seems to be catching on to this: The Washington Post’s article “Americans are moving faster than ever away from traditional TV” states that cable ratings fell another 9% among adults in 2014.
Here are some of my favorite sources for taking a deeper look at what’s happening in the world:
As their website claims, TED Talks aim to “stir your curiosity.” With topics ranging from activism to urban planning, and just about everything in between, they certainly do just that. One of my personal favorite talks was given by journalist Sharyl Attkisson, who blew the lid off some of the underhanded tactics used in her industry to manipulate the facts.
Here’s a great way to get some of your favorite shows without the constant barrage of commercials telling you that you’re not rich enough, beautiful enough, or hip enough. They also have a large selection of independent documentaries that reveal life from varying perspectives.
If you want to really blow your mind, check out the holistic programming on this subscription-based network. They have guided meditations as well as shows on self-help and metaphysical topics, yoga, spiritual films, documentaries, and alternate history programs. They aim to offer support and education to their community of spiritual seekers.
- Twitter and Facebook
Some of my best reads have been from fellow bloggers on social media whose take on the world provide a citizen-journalist perspective that is refreshing. More formal citizen journalist groups such as Global Voices are also a great place to get the news.
With a tagline of “Our Passion is to ELEVATE” this Sedona, AZ based publication is made up of writers and editors from all over the world. One of my favorite aspects of this site is that they provide some great articles on using diet and natural remedies to work on curing health problems, rather than just on treating symptoms.
If you’d like to find out more about the topics discussed in this series, and some possible alternatives to the Federal Reserve banking system, here are a few resources:
Independent Journalist Film Democracy on Deadline – Find out about journalists who are defying the odds and coming up with the real stories that break open the truth.
Thrive Movement – Sign up to add your voice to a campaign to audit the Fed or add your voice to a campaign to end the Fed
“Alternatives to The Federal Reserve System” – Video by Freedom Works University
Ubuntuism (Contributionism) with Michael Tellinger – Video outlining a South African moneyless system
HuffPost Live’s #WhatsWorking: Using Meditation Against Terrorism