Tuesday, November 02, 2010

B/c I can't think about myself anymore

Two things. One, make a postcard to protest hydrofracking! It is a terrible thing that corporate entities like to do to get natural gas out of the earth, by poisoning everyone else's water supply. They get away with it by keeping ignorance up, and throwing money at people who need it too much to turn it down:

1. Exit Art SEA seeks artist’s postcards, deaedline Nov. 24

Dear Friends,

Good News! Exit Art SEA is having an exhibition about hydrofracking for natural gas in December.

I'm writing, as one of the organizers of this show along with Lauren Rosati, Peggy Cyphers, and Alice Zinnes, to invite you to send a postcard as a way of participating in our efforts to bring awareness and information about this technology that, if it proceeds, will have huge, damaging consequences to the environment... specifically the Delaware River Basin and upstate New York.

Please send to Exit Art a post card with a small drawing (or image) on it, and a few words about hydrofracking. It is due this month by Nov 24. And if you can, please ask friends to send a post card as well.

Exit Art SEA
475 10th Avenue
New York, NY 10018
(212) 966-7745

Thank you very much, in advance, for sending a card!

best wishes,

Ruth Hardinger, FF Alumn

Two, remember to vote if you can! I may have been up until 4am stressing last night, but I still made a point to vote as soon as I got up.

Related to that, I wanted to share some things from An Open Life: Joseph Campbell in Conversation with Michael Toms:
MT: There isn't much discussion of the spiritual ideals of these other cultures, either. How is that related to what's going on in the world politically?

JC: In politics and economics, the mode inevitably is conflict. Politics is winning over somebody else; economics is, again, winning over somebody else. I think it's a good thing to have to fight, and to be in the world struggle; that's what life is. But it's in the spiritual realm that there are constants. It's a shame that typically there's been a fight in the spiritual realm also, namely, "Our religion is the true one, and these other people are pagans or infidels or whatnot," which is the political accent. The comparative approach, on the other hand, allows you to recognize the constants; it allows you to recognize that you are in counterplay--in your political and economic life--with one of your own kind, and you can regard the person as a "thou," as you would in a tennis game. You are no longer fighting a monster. But the old political style turns the man on the other side of the net into a monster. In every war we've done that. But to know that the other person is a "thou," a human being with the same sentiments and potentialities as yourself, at least civilizes the game. Then in other relationships there is the possibility of a real sense of accord and commonality.

What's before us now is the problem of our social group. What is it? Our social group is mankind. Formerly, it was this group or that. And in the older traditions, love was reserved for the in-group; aggression and all that was for others. There is no out-group now, so what are we going to do with the aggression? It has to be civilized.

Do you think politics can catch up?

I don't know what politics can do. I think it's fair to say that I'm a little bit discouraged by the people who are involved in the political life of this country. I begin to feel it has been betrayed. Its potentialities have been sold for values that are inscrutable to me.

We don't seem to honor our artists and poets very much in our culture. Are there civilizations that do?

It's worse here in the United States. In France, they name streets after their poets; we have them named after generals.

What does that reflect?

It reflects, I think, a businessman's mentality. That's what's running, and has run, and has made this country. It's a curiously unartistic country in its common character, and yet it has produced some of the greatest artists of the century. But they're not recognized publicly; those that are recognized publicly are the razzle-dazzlers who come across in the popular media.

And you feel that it's important that art and poetry and music be a vital part of any culture.

It is what is vital; the rest isn't.

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