Tag Archives: revolution

Jehane Noujaim Receives Academy Award Nomination for Documentary “The Square”

Jehane NoujaimWith her unusual background and upbringing between the United States and the Middle East, Jehane Noujaim has a unique vantage point from which to film the stories of the Arab Spring. In her newest documentary “The Square,” Noujaim follows a number of Egyptians through the ongoing Egyptian Revolution. That unique vantage point helped score an Academy Award nomination this morning for Best Documentary Feature (a first for a Netflix feature film).

The organic way in which the film’s crew came together is one of the many unique twists that makes Noujaim’s brand of storytelling particularly engaging and insightful. The team met in Tahrir Square as the protests began. All brought there by a similar desire to witness history and then to share what was happening with the world. The danger to herself and the crew was very real and they were arrested on several occasions but the importance of sharing this story was larger than the fear of arrest.

In discussing her film, Noujaim speaks with a frankness of one who has a genuine passion for the story she is telling. The daughter of an American mother and an Egyptian father, she felt a deep connection to the people and to the story. “I grew up ten minutes away from Tahrir so I felt I had no choice but to be there,” she explains in her interview with Deepak Chopra.

Jehane Noujaim set out not to tell the story of the victors, who can hardly be named as the revolution is still ongoing, but rather to explore the reasons the Egyptian people were protesting. She wanted to explore what is it like when you feel like you’ve lost. In the moments of hopelessness what keeps a revolutionary going? Those are the critical moments, the world should know what makes those people come back the next day and continue fighting for what they believe in.

When exploring issues of war and revolution there is always a tendency to place blame, either with a dictatorial leader, with a fundamentalist rebellion or with an overzealous military. Noujaim shies away from such bold pronouncements. The only conclusion that she can come to about the ongoing struggles in Egypt is that all of these actors are merely symptoms of the larger issue. They are symptoms of a system that has a lack of consciousness and an inability to protect all Egyptians equally.

Despite this disheartening reality, she maintains a deep seeded optimism that she credits to the people she was able to follow in her film and others that she had the opportunity to meet during the five years she spent filming in Tahrir Square. Their conviction is clear, they want a better life for themselves, their children and for the people of Egypt. Noujaim’s mission is to present the stories of these real people engaging in a struggle that is larger than themselves and working to create positive change. For Jehane Noujaim, this is the story of the Egyptian Revolution and this is the story that demands telling. You can watch the trailer for “The Square” below.

The Academy Award ceremony will air March 2. Check your local listings for time.

VOD: Is Russell Brand an Anarchist or Just Smarter Than We Give Him Credit For?

Russell Brand has been known to rustle more than a few feathers for speaking his mind. He gets a bad wrap for his crude sense of stage humor or the details of his short-lived marriage to Katy Perry ending up in the tabloids. He doesn’t mind telling off reporters when they slack in asking thoughtful and researched questions and he’s all about sharing his enlightening experiences with yoga and meditation. But would you peg him for a political scholar?

He just finished a week as guest editor at New Statesman despite having never voted in his life. In a recent interview on the BBC’s Newsnight, Russell shared his disdain for the current political system and how it favors the rich hierarchy. He spends a large amount of time defending his position of not voting as his way of refusing to comply with a system that clearly doesn’t benefit the lower classes. Having grown up poor, Russell explains that’s why a lot of poor youth don’t vote – their apathy comes from growing up in a system that clearly doesn’t cater to their needs. Newsnight host bawks at Brand, saying he has no right to complain about a system that he doesn’t put a voice into – and Russell argues back that it seems pointless to voice an opinion in a system that doesn’t work. It seems like revolutionary talk, but the further he explains the more you realize it actually makes sense. Is voter apathy a sign of youth laziness or a call for political overhaul? Does it make Russell irresponsible for promoting these tactics or is he on to something?

Even if you don’t agree with Russell’s political sense, you should also check out this interview where he explains that every person is just a different physical representation of God – or the ordering force of the universe. You’ll see it sounds pretty similar to this Deepak Chopra interview. And you probably thought he was just a comedian with crazy hair.

Way to go Russell.

Inspivideo: The Economy of Love

Starting in February, we here at Intent will spotlight one remarkable video each day to inspire you to fulfill your intentions and improve your life. Today, a brief taste of the upcoming documentary, Occupy Love.

“If I want a society that works, then I need you to be powerful, I need you to be responsible, I need you to be fully engaged, and maybe I need you to be joyous. The more I can give you the better my society is, because we are actually in this together”

Rebecca Solnit

Alternative Economies, Anyone?

 

Alternative Economies, Anyone?

 

Have you contemplated even the slightest possibility that there may be an alternative to capeetalism or communism? Or heard of alternatives? 

Whatever the causes of this Universe, whatever its reasons for being, the enormity of this vast Universe is so profound that surely no one alive on Earth is so drunk with the conceit that a human, any human or humanity at large is the cause of this planet or the Universe at large, implicating that the Universe was here before any human, perhaps, and that whatever is operative of, or operating en whole this vast Universe.

The architecture of atoms and molecules resembles that of solar systems, understanding them necessitates simply expanding our minds and focusing on continuities. Single cell individuals abound on Earth, and perhaps elsewhere, while single cells have come together in mutuality and cooperation to bring about opportunities on grander scales, including making up your body, without which you would not be you and we would not be here. Humanity is on the threshold of a new renaissance that will achieve, or reclaim the unification of humanity, on Earth and perhaps beyond, that will bring forth similar synergies to further all life on Earth, and beyond, to greater realms of excellence and subtler realms of being for us and all life forms.

Humanity is awake enough today to understand life and operating principles operating at both minute and grand scales, recognize their similarities and acknowledge that the Universe is, and has been all along, operating with the most viable economic system anywhere and an ethos that informs other realms of socio-political operating principles, inclusive of and more subtle than the excellence established during the Renaissance a few centuries ago.

To this effort I offer these five fundamental principles and welcome that each be explored and discussed individually on their own merits.  I think you’ll find them both easy to understand and quite acceptable, while their implications reach thoroughly into our human experience, in every realm of life.  

 

First Fundamental Principle:

No individual should be allowed to accumulate any physical wealth without the clear permission or approval of the collective body.

Purport: The universe is the common property of all. All people have usufructuary rights, that is, the right of enjoyment, but no one has the right to misuse this common property. Those who gather much wealth and hoard it directly curtail the happiness and convenience of others in society. Their behavior is flagrantly anti-social. Therefore no one should be allowed to hoard wealth without the permission of society.  

 

Second Fundamental Principle:
 

There should be maximum utilization and rational distribution of all mundane, supramundane and spiritual potentialities of the universe.

Purport: The wealth and resources inherent in the crude, subtle and causal worlds should be developed for the welfare of all people. All resources hidden in the five fundamental factors – solid, liquid, luminous, aerial and ethereal – should be fully utilized and this endeavor will ensure the maximum development of the universe. People will have to earnestly explore land, sea and space to discover and manufacture the necessary resources. There should be rational distribution of the accumulated wealth of humanity. In other words, apart from meeting the indispensable minimum necessities of all, the necessities of meritorious people and those with special requirements must also be met [atiriktum, in Sanskrit]. 

 

Third Fundamental Principle:

There should be maximum utilization of the physical, metaphysical and spiritual potentialities of the unit and collective bodies of human society.

Purport: The collective body, collective mind and collective spirit must be developed. One must not forget that collective good lies in individuals and individual good lies in collectivity. Without providing for the comfort of the individual through proper food, light, air, accommodation and medical treatment, collective good can never be accomplished. So it is with the sole intention of doing collective good that one will have to devote oneself to individual good.

The development of the collective mind is impossible without developing a proper social consciousness, encouraging a sense of social service and awakening knowledge in every individual. So, inspired with the thought of doing good to the collective mind, one has to do good to the individual mind. Absence of spirituality and spiritual morality in an individual will break the backbone of the collectivity. So for the sake of collective good one will have to awaken spirituality in individuals. One or two powerful, learned or worldly-wise people, or one or two spiritualists do not indicate advancement and progress of the whole society. The body, mind and self of every individual have the potential for limitless expansion and development. This potentiality has to be harnessed and brought to fruition.

 

Fourth Fundamental Principle:

There should be a proper adjustment amongst these physical, metaphysical, mundane, supramundane and spiritual utilizations.

Purport: While promoting individual and collective welfare there should be proper adjustment amongst the physical, mental and spiritual and the crude, subtle and causal factors. For example, society has the responsibility of meeting the minimum necessities of every individual but if society arranges food and builds a house for everyone under the impetus of this responsibility, individual initiative becomes retarded. People will gradually become lethargic. Therefore society has to make such arrangements so that people, in exchange for their labor according to their capacity, can earn the money they require to purchase the minimum necessities. In order to raise the level of minimum necessities of people the best policy is to enhance their purchasing capacity.

The law of adjustment further stipulates that while taking services from a person who is physically, mentally and spiritually developed, society should follow a balanced policy of adjustment. If only one of these three capacities – physical, mental or spiritual – is developed in a person, society should take the one that is developed. If both physical and intellectual capacities are sufficiently developed in a person, society should adopt the policy of adjustment, which takes more intellectual service and less physical service, because intellectual power is comparatively subtle and rare. If all three capacities – physical, mental and spiritual – are found in one person, society should make greatest use of their spiritual service and least of their physical service.

The greatest service to the cause of social welfare can be rendered by those who have acquired spiritual power, and the next service by those having intellectual power. Those having physical power, though not negligible, cannot do anything by themselves. Whatever they do is done under the instructions of those with intellectual and spiritual power. Hence the responsibility of social control should not be in the hands of those who have great physical capacity, or in the hands of those endowed with courage, or in the hands of those who are intellectually developed, or in the hands of those with worldly skills. Social control should be in the hands of those who are spiritual aspirants, intelligent and brave all at the same time. 

 

Fifth Fundamental Principle:

The method of utilization should vary in accordance with the changes in time, space and person, and the utilization should be of a progressive nature.

Purport: The proper use of any object changes in accordance with the changes in time, place and person. Those who cannot understand this simple reality want to cling to the skeleton of the past and are consequently rejected by contemporary, living society. Sentiments based on narrow national outlook, regional outlook or caste pride etc., tend to keep people away from rudimental facts and original ideas. Those influenced by such sentiments cannot openly accept the simple truth. Consequently they are compelled to slink away to the back stage after having done indescribable damage to their country and fellow citizens.

Changes in the use of every object inevitably occur according to changes in time, place and person. After recognizing this fact people will have to progressively utilize every object and every idea. For example, scientific research must be applied so that a person, instead of wielding one huge hammer today, will be able to wield many hammers simultaneously, using the same strength. In other words, scientific research, guided by progressive ideas, should extract greater and greater service from the same human potential. It is not a sign of progress to use outdated scientific technology in an age of developed science.

Human beings will have to bravely face whatever large and small obstacles that may arise due to the use of various resources and materials created by progressive ideas and developed technology. Human beings have to march forward to victory on the path of all-round fulfillment in life.

                         Lend Your Touch for a Magnificent Home Planet

Tell me, what are your thoughts, insights and remdies for a healthy human society?  Please contribute. 

 

Five Laws of Conflict – Burning Korans Breaks Them All

This Saturday, Florida-based pastor Terry Jones had planned to lead his congregation in a Koran burning, celebrating what they call "International Burn a Koran Day." Although everyone from the Pope to Hillary Clinton has urged him to halt his plans, it seems that only a sign from God can keep him from following through. I can’t decide if Terry is short-sighted or brilliant, if he lacks all ability to skillfully manage conflict or if he is, intentionally or accidentally, leading us to peace. Let us first review the folly of his Koran burning plan, drawing from history’s most brilliant masters of conflict. My survey shows that Terry’s demonstration breaks five fundamental laws governing how to win.

1. Violence is an inferior strategy: one of Sun Tzu’s most important statements is "the highest realization of warfare is to attack the enemy’s plans; next is to attack their alliances; next to attack their army; and the lowest is to attack their fortified cities." Niccolo Machiavelli wrote, "Arms are permissible when there is no hope except in arms." Here we have two of history’s most well-known individuals saying great strategy solves conflict without violence. Now while burning Korans is not physically violent, it is morally vehement and, as we will see in a moment, grossly misdirected.

2. Make means consistent with ends: we love to read stories about bloody clashes of civilization–the French and U.S. Revolutions, for example. But the violent ones rarely sustain their victories. The Irish Republican Army, Palestine Liberation Army, Basque ETA, and Sri Lankan Tamil Tigers all ultimately struggled against the popular resistance their violent means engendered. In contrast, consider non-violent "wars" like the liberation of India, the end of apartheid in South Africa, the removal of dictators in the Philippines and Chile, or the democracy movement in Poland. All resulted in sustainable victories. As Gandhi pointed out, "The means must be consistent with the ends." History tells us that burning Korans, even if successful in some way, will eventually lead to an unsustainable world filled with burning Korans, Bibles, and Torahs.

3. Create no competition: Sun Tzu wrote that "to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill." The best strategies preempt competition. By this measure, the burning of Korans is a step backward. It achieves no meaningful gain while it can only excite competition. What the burning of Koran does is draw a challenge in the sand; it creates an "us vs. you" dynamic that Gandhi saw as critical to undo: "We reaffirm our unity with others when we transform ‘us’ versus ‘them’ thinking and doing." At the heart of the Koran-burnings folly is that it achieves no gain yet activates conflicting identities–Christian vs. Islam–that will naturally trigger conflict.

4. Isolate your opponent: one the greatest strategists of modern times, Colonel John Boyd, suggests that a critical element of any successful campaign is to isolate your opponent from his supporters. Sun Tzu called this "attacking alliances." Some U.S. military strategists conceptualize our conflict with Islamic extremists as being a battle with four concentric spheres: at the center is Al-Qaeda (our primary target), surrounding them are various Jihadist groups that gain support and inspiration from formal-Qaeda, around them are Islamic fundamentalist sympathizers, and around them is the broader population of followers of Islam (see this report, PDF file). A smart strategy would laser in on Al-Qaeda and other Jihadist groups while isolating them from the support of sympathizers and followers of Islam. By robbing the target of their support, you weaken them. Burning Korans incites the outer concentric rings to support the Al-Qaeda target. It takes natural supporters of ours and gives them a reason to support the "enemy."

5. Never come down to your enemy: if your enemy is good with a sword, it would be foolish to pick up a sword against them. Instead, you should wield a weapon with which they are less familiar. If you fight like your enemy, you become your enemy. By turning to burning Korans, Terry sinks to the extremists’ level and breaks this important strategic law.

My Hope

While Machiavelli paints a foreboding hue on Terry’s Koran-burning strategy ("There is no surer sign of decay in a country than to see the rites of religion held in contempt"), my rosy lenses cannot help but reach for a positive outcome from this situation.

For the first time Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin have something to agree on. Sarah joins Hillary in urging Terry to hold back, warning, "It will feed the fire of caustic rhetoric and appear as nothing more than mean-spirited religious intolerance. Don’t feed that fire." Reverend Billy Graham’s son has been calling Terry asking him to stop. Republican conservative Haley Barbour says of the incident, "I don’t think there is any excuse for it." Gen. David Petraeus, Angelina Jolie, and even the Pope have all weighed in on the same side.

Could this be Terry’s real plan? To unify the U.S. behind our highest ideals? Whether intentional or not, if Terry follows through, let us all hope that he and his 50-member congregation will set up a global shift that will result positive momentum for all of us. The strategic principles outlined above apply to any conflict you wish to skillfully engage in, whether for your business or life. Ask yourself the questions below to see how you can truly master conflict:

  1. What would it mean to attack your enemy’s plans or alliances, rather than attacking your adversary?
  2. Are your means consistent with your desired ends?
  3. Is your strategy activating unnecessary competition?
  4. How can you isolate your competitors from their sources of support?
  5. What is your competition’s preferred form of battle and how can you avoid playing their game?

Originally posted on FastCompany.com http://www.fastcompany.com/1688082/five-laws-of-conflict-burning-korans-breaks-them-all

PHOTO (cc): Flickr / Malik_Braun

Breathing Conspiracy: Joining the Global Spiritual Revolution

The word conspiracy means really to "breathe together." I was sent this poem and wanted to share it as it applies to so many who are part of what I call "the change movement." Each of you is taking a stand for change, being an example whether in yourself, your family, your workplace, or your community. Thank you for what you do, who you are and your work in the world. You know who you are.

 

A SPIRITUAL "CONSPIRACY"

On the surface of our world right now
There is war, violence, and craziness
And things may seem dark.

But calmly and quietly
At the same time
Something is happening underground.

An inner revolution is taking place
And certain individuals
Are being called to a higher light.

It is a silent revolution
From the inside out
From the ground up.

This is a global co-operation
That has sleeper cells in every nation.
It is a planetary Spiritual Conspiracy.

You won’t likely see us on T.V.
You won’t read about us in the newspaper.
You won’t hear from us on the radio.

We don’t seek glory.
We don’t wear any uniform.
We come in all shapes and sizes, colors and styles.

We are in every country and culture of the world
In cities big and small, mountains and valleys
In farms and villages, tribes and remote islands.

Most of us work anonymously
Seeking not recognition of name
But profound transformation of life.

Working quietly behind the scenes
You could pass by one of us on the street
And not even notice.

We go undercover
Not concerned for who takes the final credit
But simply that the work gets done.

Many of us may seem to have normal jobs.
But behind the external storefront
Is where the deeper work takes a place.

With the individual and collective power
Of our minds and hearts
We spread passion, knowledge, and joy to all.

Some call us the Conscious Army
As together
We co-create a new world.

Our orders come from the Spiritual Intelligence Agency
Instructing us to drop soft, secret love bombs
when no one is looking.

Poems—Hugs—Music—Photography—Smiles—Kind words
Movies—Meditation and Prayer—Dance—Websites
Social Activism—Blogs—Random Acts of Kindness

We each express ourselves
In our own unique ways
With our own unique gifts and talents.

"Be the change you want to see in the world"
That is the motto that fills our hearts.
We know this is the path to profound transformation.

We know that quietly and humbly
Individually and collectively
We have the power of all the oceans combined.

At first glance our work is not even visible.
It is slow and meticulous
Like the formation of mountains.

And yet with our combined efforts
Entire tectonic plates
Are being shaped and moved for centuries to come.

Love is the religion we come to share
And you don’t need to be highly educated
Or have exceptional knowledge to understand it.

Love arises from the intelligence of the heart
Embedded in the timeless evolutionary pulse
Of all living beings.

Be the change you want to see in the world.
Nobody else can do it for you.
Yet don’t forget, we are all here supporting you.

We are now recruiting.
Perhaps you will join us
Or already have.

For in this spiritual conspiracy
All are welcome, and all are loved.
The door is always open.

 

—Author Appropriately Unknown

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised?!

Today, I celebrate Revolution! Democracy now sports a Green face prompting a permanent place for social media in delivering unbiased, uncensored news.

When I think back to the U.S. Presidential election of 2000, I can not help but to feel that I have some unresolved issues with the land of the Free and the home of the Brave. In 2000, I was just eighteen years old with a naive glimmer of belief in the greatest country in the world. As I proudly stood in line waiting to cast my vote at my assigned polling location, I remember looking at the faces of my fellow voters with wondrous excitement hoping that they all appreciated the many sacrifices made in the interest of giving each and everyone of us a voice in the political process.

Unfortunately, our voices failed to resonate beyond a hidden agenda that is deeply rooted in America’s secret relationships, partnerships and dictatorship fantasies. Watching the media coverage of a possible recount in Florida was more than insult to my intelligence; it was a dagger pierced through our Souls. In this moment, I couldn’t feel Free because I was too stunned to be Brave. Mainstream media stagnates our Will  to fight and plays off of our fear to confront our greatest enemy: Ourselves!

Far too often, we have thoughts, emotions and plans that we convince ourselves are not worth pursuing. Why are we not inclined to take to the streets for our freedom as the Iranians have? Fighting for Freedom doesn’t necessarily mean planning a revolt against your government or literally rioting in the streets wearing Green ribbons and face paint. Not to be misunderstood, I admire the tenacity, bravery and courage of the Iranians; nevertheless, every pursuit of Freedom and every opportunity to exude Bravery will not always be televised.

We fail to conceptualize that the greatest Revolutions start from within. In our deepest, darkest hours we find a way out of the darkness into the light. As the social media enthusiasts have welcomed their chance to bring the world Truth amongst a sea of biased, corporate driven savages known as mainstream media and the Iranians inadvertently provide us with a stellar example of what it means to be called the land of the Free and the home of the Brave.

Here’s to the rebirth of Democracy and Mainstream Media……

For those with ears to hear and the eyes to see.. “it” is upon the world here and now.

 

For those with ears to hear and the eyes to see.. "it" is upon the world here and now.
 
One would hope that all become embracers of truth, not one of those that pretend to represent it while engaging in fictions, gaining the ability to see the reality of what is, having eliminated the fictions from their own mind.
 
I am dismayed that the ego beholden leadership and management still attempts to delude the masses perhaps caught in their own illusions. With some exceptions noted, I have seen some light and their efforts are not unnoticed, and I know the challenges faced and they have the full support of the divine.
 
The old systems no longer suffice for the evolution of humanity or it’s ability to adapt the environment let alone leave it in balance. Those of you that have created and failed to evolve the current systems or transform or correct the foundational flaws because of your ego impediments and greed will not be implementing the new ones, unless perhaps you transform inside and give reign to the spirit. I can assure you that they will no longer be directing; a new director has taken over and we will give it the name of Truth and Justice.
 
There are so many that profess a belief in God, even claiming to represent it, and to honor it, but I think that God is a concept in their minds, not something they understand in their reality.
 
What is claimed by many is not reflected in their actions. Most of those that for years have claimed to be trying to eliminate hunger and poverty are simply a farce attempting to maintain control. The creators of the passive violence are quick to put the focus on the aggressive violence which is a response to the passive violence and they fool themselves.
 
The biggest problem is that so many act from fear rather than having faith and acting from love, and I am not saying that is easy to act with faith having been born into a world of fiction with so many not acting in faith but rather doubt and fear. This is why all must act as one with regard to the many as one, together.
 
What the planet has yet to come to understand is that God undefined is not just an elusive enigma; it is a reality that is Here Now. Not that it has not been there the whole time, there are different aspects to the divine, that which is everywhere and that which is some where, the difference is this special aspect has taken to the flesh, both out of necessity and that having reached a stage of evolution where it can bring about what was not possible before. It has eyes, hands and ears and innate understanding from the finite perspective that you all operate from, it also has intentions and none of you will be able to stand against it any more than the darkness in a room can resist the light.
 
God concepts aside if you are a scientist or atheist I am sure you could entertain the possibility of a billions year old intelligence and that perhaps you are it’s offspring adolescents still for sure.
 
For all those that do not know what I am talking about and what is to come I guess you we need to read Intent Blog from back to front focusing on the blue comment section, for here prophecy and insight was written, or perhaps become victims of your own ignorance. One should put their attention where one has indicated, you might start with http:thesource.me . It is a great story line… that blends with reality providing some entertainment value.
 
I do not know the name of the guy that first made this point, but I consider it valid, he said it is not the politicians that can solve problems it is the technicians, politicians are not trained to solve problems. I would add that what the politicians have learned is how to manipulate. I happen to be one of those technicians yet except for a few exceptions, and perhaps some I do not know about I do not see the world management seeking council from those with the correct intentions, ones that arise from spirit not ego and the required knowing, experience and perspective.
 
I AM realizing now that it is not the world’s management that I should be expecting to interact with but all the people as a whole, for the worlds current management would no doubt get in the way unless they can some how transcend their ignorance.
 
The Truth is the Holy Terror in a world of fiction, perhaps one will embrace it before it embraces the truth for you, feared by those living in a fiction, beloved to those living in the hell created by others.
 
I don’t know all the details of the divine plan unfolding, nor am I directing it, I suspect the details depend very much on the choices you all make and your level of non-resistance and support, but I do have insight because it seems I am close to the center of it and I make myself available to assist….
 
For those that would use the notion of “Unity” in an attempt to maintain the old system of things, giving it only a new face, you will not exceed but will only bring destruction, the new system of things as defined by the one shall be put into place, for whomever is left.
 
Witness now to the others for the one anticipated has come.

Oneness is Abundance

L.A.-based community activist Orland Bishop explains how the American economic system that assigns value to competition and scarcity of resources undermines oneness, which is inherently relational and abundant. Although the capitalist system as a whole resists investing in human development, people can create new systems that reinforce each individual’s value instead of encouraging struggle and competition by making alternative agreements based on collective inspiration.

To view more interviews with Orland Bishop click here.

Global Oneness Project