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Learning CenterBe the ChangeSuper Cell SeriesLife and HealthPolitics of Freedom Be the Change You Want to See
Mahatma Gandhi urged so many, many years ago in India, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." Do you see a need for change in our world? Why do we need to be a vehicle for change when we live so comfortably? When we earn a good living, we have an endless array of choices for food, we have comfortable homes, we have excellent health care, we have time to relax, and we have democratic government with wise leaders. What more could we want? On a recent holiday retreat, that’s the questions I heard when I tried to point out that we are losing our freedoms to big government and big corporations that don’t have our best interests at heart.

Questions we need to examine are: Will we continue to live so comfortably? Will working for multi–national corporations be the only choice to earn a living? Is only an endless array of unhealthy choices for food a possibility? Is germ warfare a reality? Are routine vaccinations a threat to our health? Why are so many of us getting sick so often? Are we facing the loss of holistic choices for health? What about government—what does our vote really mean, do we have a voice in government and do our leaders have our best interests at heart? Are some comforts worth the loss of individual choices and freedoms? And possibly the most important question of all, why are we here on this planet?

Change will come only when enough of us understand what is happening and when enough of us are willing to make the changes in our personal lives. In this series on Survival Skills we’ll outline some responsibilities and spiritual viewpoints to maintain and regain our health and our freedoms.

Have we allowed a monster to grow and invade our lives; a monster that says it’s illegal to use the word “cure”; a monster that tells us what we can or cannot use to better our health?
What kind of people readily approve the sale of toxic drugs that harm, and criminalize those who make natural, harmless remedies available? Are we all guilty of neglect to allow such a government to operate? Do we rationalize the question and throw the blame on politicians, government bureaucrats, and leaders of multinational corporations?
What is the purpose of a country’s government? Can the responsibilities of government be simplified? A vivid experience running for public office results in three basic principles for government and our individual responsibilities to earn less government.
Most of us assume that our vote holds government accountable; that our elected officials work for our best interests; that the newspapers and magazines we buy or the radio and television newscasts we watch are careful to give us the truth as honestly and objectively as possible. Do they? Are you ready to see the truth behind the illusions?
What’s happening in the world today? Our government leaders, motivated by power, scheme behind closed doors in order to influence our decisions. Our industries, motivated by greed, inundate us with images designed to manipulate what we purchase. Our media is the vehicle used by government and industry to control our reactions—to accept their decisions and to agree with judgments based on intolerance. What does the world scene have to do with the journey from our head to our heart?
Do you agree and support the idea that it is important to have gun control laws to curb violence? Or, do you think gun control laws may not curb violence but will be used to take away our freedoms? Is gun control a necessary measure to protect us?
Husband takes antacids to try to quell the ache in his stomach; Wife takes Prozac to help her cope with life; Daughter is hooked on a diet drug; Son is given Ritalin at school; Grandmother takes 9 different drugs every day as a routine part of her life in a nursing home. The common denominator for this typical American family is they all take drugs on a regular, ongoing basis.
The roots of Socialism are based on the importance of giving. Most of us would agree it is worthy to give. When we give with love, it opens our heart. We tap into a feeling that we’re serving the greater good and a higher purpose. We become a better person. When the giving involves taking, what do we lose personally and as a society? Are those losses worth it?
To vaccinate or not to vaccinate? Most of us don’t even ask that question. So why do we vaccinate? Do we vaccinate for fear our child will get sick? Do we read the literature about the pros and cons? Are we knowledgeable about the ingredients in the vaccines? Do we know whether there are long-term effects from vaccines? Do we know if there are alternatives to vaccination?
Office gossip often centers on fellow workers and their problems. Office friendships often develop in cliques. Those within the clique feel safer as they know they have support if mistakes are made. Work is a place to earn a living. Gossip and complaining are a way to be included. Many of us accept this competitive work environment as natural. Could we work together with an attitude of cooperation rather than competition?
Government and the party in power changes from election to election. Some of us may vote consistently for the same party. Some of us may change which party we vote for depending on how our views change. Does it make a difference in the type of government we get? Is there a discernible difference today between parties that have traditionally represented the right or Capitalism and parties that represent the left or Socialism?
Do we accept the idea that it is up to government to protect us … that we are not responsible for ourselves? Is it the government’s role to take care of us? Are we like little children looking to the government as a parent? Have we allowed fear to keep us from stepping out to welcome life with its challenges and uncertainties? The human spirit shrivels in the presence of fear. And, the human spirit soars when we’re willing to live life with all its risks. When we expect government to protect us, are we stifling the human spirit?
In the movie Enemy at the Gates set in Russia, after fighting for the communist ideal of material equality, the soldier played by Joseph Fiennes succumbs to jealousy over a woman and betrays his soldier comrade. Dying of a battle wound, he says “We tried so hard to create a society that was equal, where we would have nothing to envy but there’s always something to envy. A smile, friendship. There will always be rich and poor. Rich in gifts, poor in gifts. Rich in love, poor in love.” So, why are we here?
When life hits you with a hard blow, do you let it knock you down for the count or do you pick yourself up, dust yourself off and embrace the change? Victim or survivor—which do you choose? Sometimes we choose victim when we are first hit with adversity. What we do next is what counts.
The September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center touched all of our lives. It brought us to a crossroad—to retaliate with violence and choose the love of power or to open our hearts to a greater understanding and choose the power of love. How do our personal choices—individually in our daily lives and collectively as communities— determine government actions?
We live in a time where leaders of large corporations, the media, government bureaucrats and politicians seem to speak with one voice. All too often that voice isn’t about truth but rather to manipulate our thoughts and beliefs. This voice knows that a threat to our freedom is a reason we will accept war. Is it also the reason the “enemy” is willing to go to war?
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