Santiago Murals

 

Signs of the Times (?)

Museo a Cielo Abierto 2

Museo a Cielo Abierto 3

Museo a Cielo Abierto 4

Museo a Cielo Abierto 5

Museo a Cielo Abierto 6

Museo a Cielo Abierto 7

Museo a Cielo Abierto 8

Museo A Cielo Abierto 9

Museo a Cielo Abierto 10

Museo a Cielo Abierto 11

Metro Bellas Artes – Santiago, Chile 12

Metro Bellas Artes – Santiago, Chile 13

Street Art, Mural, Cafe – Santiago, Chile 14

Santiago Murals. January 2018. Photography by JJ Montagnier. 
 © Copyright. All Rights Reserved. Gypsy Café.

Also see: SANTIAGO STREET ART

Los Lagos y Los Volcanes

Visiting The Chilean Lake District – January 2018
Photography by JJ Montagnier

[click to view slides]

These photographs were taken in the Los Lagos region of Chile, bordering North Patagonia: The lakeside towns of Puerto Montt and Puerto Varas are ideal places to take excursions from and there are regular local buses that go to the lakes, volcanoes, nature reserves and lakeside beaches. This gallery features the volcanoes and lakes that I captured in the area during my ten days stay. Please click through the images for details of each place. Thank you for visiting and viewing. 

Jean-Jacques

02.02.2018

Copyright © 2018 – All Rights Reserved – Gypsy Café

The Fifth Earth – Energy Transitions (Part 4) – What Does the Future Hold?

A Five Level Pyramid at Tikal, Tikal National Park, Petén, Guatemala, (2015, JJM)

What does the future hold? 

“It was halfway famine, it was  halfway  feast” [1]

This is the translation of the original Maya prophecy for Katun 2 Ahau (2012 – 2032). In this article and the next one we will match this prophecy with real trends and we will make realistic forecasts for the next fifteen years.

Physical energy configurations such as fossil fuel resources and renewable energies will be factored in and we will make predictions for how human beings are likely to respond to the challenges facing them in the coming years.

Having the right attitude

If we are internally (spiritually, mentally and psychologically) prepared for the external material changes in the world, they will appear to be positive, and our approach to them would be pro-active, courageous, responsible, motivated and engaging.

As above: spiritually / internally

So below: materially / externally

If we are not internally prepared for external changes in the world, on the outside they would appear to us as negative, disastrous, calamitous and unfair, and our approach would be that of fear, denial, evasion, resistance, victimhood and escapism. 

A Concise Prophecy

The first thing that we notice about the prophecy for Katun 2 Ahau is that it is reasonably short: “It was halfway famine, it was  halfway  feast” [1]. This is actually the portion of the prophecy that is considered the most important  part by translators. The rest of the prophecy consists of some additional sentences and we will touch on them later.

The wording of the English version differs, depending on the translation and the codex it was taken from, but “It was halfway famine, it was halfway  feast” is Munro S. Edmonson’s interpretation and is from The Book of Chilam Balam of Chumayel.

Edmonson’s version comes across as less symbolic than other translations as he has already applied some interpretation to the symbolism, which serves the objectives of this article well as we will use it as a reference point for the rest of our discussion.

Interpreting the Prophecy

Prophecies are usually very symbolic in nature and the words “feast” and “famine” could be further interpreted in various ways. In this article we will consider these words to generally mean “economic growth” versus “economic decline”.

In Kenneth Johnson’s book, The Maya Prophecies, he explains that most scholars apply mainly two interpretations to Katun 2 Ahau’s prophecy: That half of the Katun would be prosperous and the other half would be the opposite, or that there would be social disparities between the rich and the poor which would cause a lot of social tensions during the Katun.

Prophecies can in some cases (less commonly) be interpreted literally. The meaning often falls somewhere in-between symbolism and reality. As a thought experiment we will be approaching the prophecy for Katun 2 Ahau from a literal standpoint first.  

First Easy, Then Difficult

As explained in Part 3, Katuns (19.7 year time periods) are divided into two 9.85 year halves and these halves have a length close to that of decades, but Katun-halves do not necessarily start or end at exactly the same time as decades do.

The energy of a Katun ascends during the first half, reaches a peak in the middle, and descends during the second half.  We will therefore assume that the prophecy for Katun 2 Ahau should be read in reverse: that the first half of the Katun (2012 – 2022) will continue to be relatively “easy” (there will be continued economic growth) and that the second half (2022 – 2032) will be more difficult (there will be an economic decline of some sort).   

Forecasting and Probability

In order to arrive at some realistic conclusions and make forecasts with a relatively high level of probability, we will take an open and philosophical approach to this broad and complex subject by consulting mainstream as well as quality non-mainstream sources.

Due to our scope being limited we will keep it as concise as possible at the same time. In the process we will inadvertently be touching on issues or topics that are frequently ignored or avoided for reasons that we will also delve into later, but first, let’s start with some context:

Prosperity and Poverty

Presently we live in the most materially prosperous time in recorded  history, notwithstanding the poverty that can still be found in many parts of the world. Imagining the arrival of “famine” in a real sense is almost impossible for those of us living in the developed world, considering how familiar we are with the abundance of choice in everything that we do and consume.

Poverty, unlike famine, is however something that we can relate to, at least to an extent, because we come across it often enough: Homelessness can be observed even in the richest countries and in recent years the arrival of large numbers of refugees and asylum seekers have added to that.

Some people in the developed world may even have come close to poverty in their lifetimes, due to personal financial crises or temporary local economic downturns. That happened for example in several first-world countries after the global financial crisis that started in 2008.

In reality, the average middle class person is basically only a few lost pay checks away from poverty. However, unlike in the poorer countries, there are relatively good social support systems and safety nets in place in developed nations that can assist people in getting back on their feet.

An Unbalanced World

The abundant living in the first world relies on large volumes of additional resources and supplies coming in from other parts of the world. People in developed countries have over time grown accustomed to having access to a much wider variety of manufactured goods and agricultural produce than their local environments would under normal circumstances have been able to consistently provide [2].

Virtually all under-developed nations rely on imports too, but their reasons for importing have usually more to do with survival or with maintaining a basic minimum standard of living, as opposed to it being based on demands for having as much variety and abundance as possible. Some countries fall somewhere in between with portions of their populations just surviving while other portions live in abundance.

The Making of an Illusion

The result of living in an environment which has artificially created abundance of choice is that people in such an environment end up losing their natural drive for self-sufficiency as well as their psychological self-reliance mechanisms. Abundance can only really be measured by consuming what is only locally available in order to see if our own environments can support our consumption habits – and if they can’t, we are over-consuming and we don’t have local abundance anymore. If nobody has local abundance anymore, then global abundance is an illusion and everybody is over consuming. 

“Abundance” can in actual fact only really be maintained by putting back what is taken out, a philosophy held by many traditional indigenous cultures, which would explain why they would generally avoid taking too much out in the first place.  In the process of living out the illusion of unconstrained abundance, much of the future of the entire planet is being consumed in advance – especially by populations that demand a much higher quality of life than their local environments can support [2]. 

The objective of highlighting the above is not to point fingers, or play on people’s guilt (which would be pointless, because people have developed very good mechanisms for dealing with that), but to bring across the fact that all humans are interconnected. What happens in one part of the world can and does affect other parts of the world. 

The side effects of not living within one’s own means as a group is that it makes you reliant upon others and it also puts strain on them. The same can be said of unbridled population growth worldwide, regardless of whether countries are poor or rich. Ultimately everybody will be impacted.

Limits to Limitlessness

The leading nations of the world have designed an economic system that depends on infinite economic growth, driven by unlimited resource extraction, coupled with endless hyper-consumption as a lifestyle. This economic model has been exported to the rest of the world and virtually all nations have adopted it.

The consequence is that the first world has locked itself and the rest of the world into a very specific and very set trajectory: Endless, infinite, unlimited, unmitigated, non-stop material expansion – forever – or for as long as the resources would last.

Although it is perhaps not always obvious, we live on a rather small planet with finite resources, so logically speaking it is just a matter of time before we do in fact start running out. The only question is: “When?” [3]

Catching Up

In the meantime a lot of consumer goods and technology have in recent years also become available to those that can afford them in poorer nations and that has considerably increased the quality of life for people worldwide.

Technology has in many cases leapfrogged infrastructure development completely, which has accelerated the process. Overall one can thus see a trend where the developing world is increasingly catching up with the developed world and this is happening as we speak.

Huge progress has been made in infrastructure development too, especially in developing countries with booming economies, with China having been a prime example of how fast such developments can occur.  

On the face of it then one could easily arrive at the conclusion that the nations and peoples who were left behind previously, would be able to catch up in the foreseeable future. However, such continued worldwide progress would depend on uninterrupted supplies of affordable fossil fuels and many types of raw materials.

A Precarious Situation

Should for instance the flow of resources and food supplies between countries be interrupted or become constrained for some reason, people in most nations would be severely affected. Hardly any countries are self-sufficient anymore and they all rely on imports and exports.

Having said that, some nations are still more self-sufficient than others, due to being naturally endowed with some critical resources, or they have favorable conditions for agriculture and food production. Some countries have smaller populations and thus fewer mouths to feed and fewer cars to run, so there’s an overall lower strain on their environments and a lower demand for fossil fuels.  

In many poorer nations there are still people who predominantly rely on local resources due to subsistence living and agricultural lifestyles. People in urban locations in developing countries often still live within cultural environments that are generally more community oriented or more based on a spirit of sharing and that of supporting each other.

Whose paradigm shift is it anyway?

The San people from Southern Africa, considered to be the oldest living tribe on the planet [4], will not experience a major paradigm shift should, for example, food imports stop coming into the countries that they reside in. Many of the San still live from the land, usually in very arid areas and they continue to hunt for their food and conserve water as traditional practices. 

The San people are the epitome of human survival due to having preserved their way of life for centuries. They have resilience. Should, for example, first-world city dwellers experience sudden interruptions in food supplies, experience extended power cuts, or find a lack of fuel at filling stations, a complete paradigm shift would be guaranteed. Modern world city-dwellers do not have resilience.

Another example of people with resilience is the Amish in the USA who have maintained their rural way of life for hundreds of years within a community context based on simplicity, self-reliance and self-sufficiency, without becoming dependent on the assistance of advanced technologies. The most likely paradigm shift for the Amish would be when city-dwellers start arriving in their rural areas asking for assistance with survival.

That being said, even the Amish in the USA and the present day Maya people of Central America rely on goods that are delivered to local markets and those markets are supplied with vehicles that operate on fuel and gas. Therefore, should there be any form of fuel supply shortages in general, even the more resilient groups would have to adapt, but due to having preserved and maintained most of their survival skills and their orientation towards simple living, such an adaption would be far easier for them than for consumer-oriented city dwellers who simply have no reference points for “going back in time”. 

To be continued…

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J.J. Montagnier is a futurologist and travelosopher based in South America. His writings on the Mayan calendars are intuitively inspired and are influenced by his knowledge of Jungian psychology. The author visited Central America in 2015 to do research on the subject.

This article has been written for general consumption and some concepts have been simplified. The views and opinions are those of the author.  Creative license has been applied to make some concepts more accessible. Please note that all articles in this series are written in a highly condensed format. Readers are encouraged to do further reading for details and statistics – please see references.

Copyright © 2018 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café

Please note: References to and excerpts from this article may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content: please use the  page address (URL) in the browser to link to.


References & Statistics:

  1. Edmonson, Heaven Born Merida and its Destiny, p. 228.
  2. List of countries by food consumption: https://ourworldindata.org/food-per-person
  1. List of countries by food energy intake: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_food_energy_intake
  1. World food waste statistics: http://www.theworldcounts.com/counters/world_food_consumption_statistics/world_food_waste_statistics
  1. Which countries waste the most food? https://wastelesssavemore.sainsburys.co.uk/whats-happening/swadlincote/blog/which-countries-waste-the-most-food
  1. List of countries by oil consumption: https://www.indexmundi.com/energy/?product=oil&graph=consumption&display=rank
  1. List of countries by oil Imports: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_oil_imports
  1. To be explored in the next article – in the meantime please see the Video: Final Warning – Limits to Growth.
  2. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/worlds-most-ancient-race-traced-in-dna-study-1677113.html

Main Resources:

The Mayan Prophecies – The Renewal of the World 2012 – 2072, by Kenneth Johnson, (published in 2012).

The Book of Destiny – Unlocking the Secrets of the Ancient Mayans and the Prophecy of 2012, by Carlos Barrios (published in 2009). [1] [2].

The Historical Value of the Books of Chilan Balam. Author(s): Sylvanus Griswold Morley. Source: American Journal of Archaeology, Vol. 15, No. 2 (Apr. – Jun., 1911), pp. 195-214.

The Book of Chilam Balam of Chumayel, by Ralph Roys (published in 1933).

The Katun Prophecies of the Paris Codex. Thesis by James V. Rauff. Loyola University Chicago.

 


 

The Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill – Santiago

A visit to San Cristóbal Hill – Santiago 

1. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (03.12.2017)

2. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

3. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

4. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

5. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

6. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

7. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

8. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

9. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

10. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

11. Crosses on San Cristóbal Hill, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

12. Statue of the Virgin Mary, Cerro San Cristóbal, Santiago, Chile (24.12.2017)

“The Sanctuary of the Immaculate Conception on San Cristóbal Hill is one of the principal places of worship for the Catholic Church of Chile, as well as being an icon of Santiago, Chile. It is notable in particular for a large statue of the Immaculate Conception, which is located at the summit of San Cristóbal Hill, some 863 meters above sea level.” – Wikipedia

Photographs by JJ Montagnier, December 2017

Copyright © 2017 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café

The Fifth Earth – Energy Transitions (Part 3) – Paradigm Shifts in the Age of Polarity

Stucco friezes on El Castillo pyramid, Xunantunich, Belize. Photo by JJM (2015).

**

Note – this article refers to the Original Mayan Prophecies listed in Part 1 (updated)

**

Paradigm Shifts in the Age of Polarity

Mild Paradigm Shifts

An example of a mild paradigm shift happened for many people during and after the unexpected financial crisis of 2008. That crisis had in fact been forecasted by lone voices for quite some time before it happened. These voices were independent financial analysts who had been paying close attention to real unfolding non-mainstream events, but few people paid heed to their warnings. Virtually until the last moment, mainstream economic analysts painted a rosy picture and ignored the evident enough signs.

Although often unexpected, financial crises do happen. They are not obscure or unknown events. In fact we expect them to roll around every once in a while. In the case of the 2008 financial crash, many people could still remember the Dot Com crash of 2001 which was etched on the minds of those who had worked in the IT sector back then.

An Instant Paradigm Shift

A real paradigm shift would look very different. Many ideas were floated about what would or could happen on or around December 21, 2012, some of them bordering on the fantastic: Duality would disappear, the magnetic poles would change positions or shift, instant telepathy would ensue, volcanoes would pop, earthquakes would shake and tectonic plates would shift.

Nothing of the sort happened on that day and the result was an epic let-down for many people who expected an instant paradigm shift. The one time that people actually paid attention to warning signs (although it was not very clear what they were meant to do to prepare for it), nothing happened! Thus, most people lost further interest and got on with their lives.  

A Real Material Paradigm Shift

An example of a real paradigm shift would be if we had to revert from our present day modern industrial age lifestyles back to pre-industrial age, traditional, agricultural lifestyles, in a relatively short period of time, say, within a decade or two. That would be a real paradigm shift. Having to live with limited access to electricity for example, or without machinery or automation again. The prospect of such a thing happening is just too far-fetched to ponder.

Going back in time in practice would be completely counter-intuitive to what we would normally conceive of as going forward, which would be: using more advanced technology. Therefore paradigm shifts are normally conceived of as being linear events – for example, all jobs being taken over by robots – a situation that would require more electricity, not less. While we hold this thought, let’s consider the concept of paradigm shifts further.

Shifts of the Short Ages

In the context of the Maya calendars, shifts happening from one short age to the next would constitute mild paradigm shifts. Such transitions happen within short enough time frames for most people to become aware that many things are changing at the same time (that change seems to be speeding up), but yet changes are happening slowly enough to not cause a complete shock to the system. At first some people may be resistant to some of the changes, but most would eventually adapt to the new paradigm.

Individuals who are somewhat traditional or more consciously autonomous would usually assess social and cultural changes according to their own personal values, principles and ethics, which they had clearly defined, and would then make conscious decisions about whether to go along with certain new trends or not.  They may eventually settle somewhere in the middle, retaining some of their old ways and adopting some of the new ones, depending on what suits them best. 

Energies at Play

Most new trends happening in society nowadays are generally perceived in the context of moving forward (progressing). Whether negative or positive, it is usually considered as “progress” none the less – or, when very negative, it is perceived as being the price we have to pay for progress. That is because modern (Western) culture is not values, principles or ethics driven (anymore), but trend driven. Society therefore tends to go along with whatever new is taken up by society in general, and what that is, is usually commercially driven. 

Nevertheless, few people are aware that there are also energetic movements at play in the universe which can influence real life events and trends. On a higher level metaphysical energy influences the Spirit of the Age (group consciousness) and when that shifts it causes behavioral changes in people’s ways of thinking which are reflected in their attitudes. These changes are usually most clearly reflected in group attitudes.

By having done away with traditional internal structures (value systems) that had strong frameworks for outward conduct, group consciousness is today much more prone to being affected by the negative elements of the Spirit of the Age compared to before. 

Today, technology in the form of personal devices provide a broadcasting channel for the boundary-less expression and projection of the negative as much as the positive aspects of the Spirit of the Age, whereas before the negative aspects would have been constrained by the natural boundaries that were set by in-person, face to face communications – even when internal structures (value systems) had collapsed. 

Decadeology vs. Katunology

When we consult extensive online discussion boards about cultural changes over the decades, a practice known as ‘decadeology’, we find that there is consensus in these forums about when major cultural shifts took place (see appendix).

The objective of decadeology is to identify the distinctive cultural spirit of the age of each decade; for example how 80’s culture differed from 90’s culture. However, decadeologists seem to accept that decadeology is not an exact science, because cultural shifts never seem to happen exactly at the beginning or ending of a Gregorian calendar decade.

A Maya Katun measures 19.7 years and a half-Katun measures 9.85 years.  The midpoint of a Katun indicates a peak. The two sides (halves) of a Katun are slightly different in character from each other, due to ascending and descending energy. Length-wise half-Katuns are equivalent to decades, but they are almost never exactly synchronized with the  dates that decades start on.

When decades are compared with Katuns and half-Katuns, it can be observed that cultural shifts tend to take place around dates closely matching Katun and half-Katun shift points.

Maya “Katunology” is therefore more accurate than Gregorian decadeology, because Katunology is based on finely calculated energy shifts corroborated by centuries of observation; is recorded in mythology and is also embedded in the symbolism of the archetypes and numbers (tones) that are used in the Maya calendars. The Gregorian calendar however does not imply any energy shifting at all and it does not contain any symbolism.

We can conclude then that the cultural shifts observed and recorded by ‘decadeologists’ are (unbeknownst to them) more than likely Katun energy shifts, but observed and placed within the context of decades.

Transition Time Frames

By considering some of the actual cultural shifts of past decades by using discussions in the decadeology community as a source, we can get a feeling for the duration of time that it took for cultural shifts to occur. This gives us some understanding of the impact that shifting energy can have on group psychology and group consciousness. On average the shifts seem to take about two to four years to complete, incorporating some overlap each way.

The symbolic Maya Calendar shift point of December 21, 2012 signified both a Katuns shift point as well as a (5125 year) Great Cycle shift point. However, the energy of the new Katun took until around mid 2014, or perhaps a bit later, to really show itself.

In comparison, the Great Cycle shift, from the Maya Fourth to Fifth World, will take around 200 years to reach completion when factoring in its combined transition, gestation and maturation stages. The transition period alone is likely to take around 40 years (as discussed in Part 2).

Instant paradigm shifts are therefore very rare occurrences, because even shifts between short ages (19.7 year Katuns) take as long as three to four years.

From a Jungian perspective, periodic expectations for instant paradigm shifts more than likely stem from archetypical impulses within our consciousness. Certain archetypes within our psyche subconsciously recognize or pick up on (imminent) energy shifts, but these archetypes are unable to interpret the duration of time that the shifts would take to complete or manifest.

These instinctual archetypal early warning impulses are most probably subconscious markers and indicators that have the purpose of prompting us to action. However, working out how we should prepare for change is something that has to be done consciously on an intellectual level and then it has to be applied on a practical level. Few people follow through on this part of the process. 

An Age of Polarity

Today, in 2017, the polarity of Katun 2 Ahau (2012 – 2032) is clear to see, but the arrival of such strong polarity with polarization as a result has been counter-intuitive to the expectations that many people had had for a post-2012 world: a linear progression towards harmony. One of the reasons for such an expectation was that the previous Katun, Katun 4 Ahau (1993 – 2012) was relatively well balanced in nature.

However, evolution is not linear, it is cyclical. The fact that our (Western) civilization makes use of a modern, non-cyclical (Gregorian) calendar, means that most people have been out of the energy loop. If more attention were paid to Katun shifts as opposed to mainly the Great Cycle shift, and if it were not approached solely from a linear perspective, we may have been more prepared for the high level of polarity that we can observe almost everywhere right now.

Having said that, even non-linearity has energetic continuity by design: energetically speaking Katun 4 Ahau (1993 – 2012) had the natural purpose of preparing us for Katun 2 Ahau (2012 – 2032). During the highly spiritual Katun 4 Ahau we were meant to prepare for the volatile dualism of Katun 2 Ahau. 

Spiritually speaking, this could also be viewed from the perspective of human souls being in training: The personal development that had been achieved on an individual level during Katun 4 Ahau is now being tested on a group level in Katun 2 Ahau.

As we shall see later on (to be explored more in a future article), if we have forgotten what we have learned during the previous Katun, we can still capitalize on its benefits even in retrospect.

Younger people who have not experienced Katun 4 Ahau can still benefit from both Katuns, as they have the advantage of learning directly from the volatile energies of the present Katun, while they can also benefit from the previous Katun by selectively accessing its positive elements that are found in some of its artifacts, such as books, cinema and art.

Metaphysical Paradigm Shifts

In the meantime it is important to keep in mind that there are important underlying Great Cycle factors that have already come online, even if the overall Great Cycle transition will take a long time to complete. These are more subtle, growing energies and due to some of them being completely new and unknown to us their characteristics hold the potential for generating real unexpected paradigm shifts, which may or may not be “instant”.

Shift Point 1993: From Katun 6 Ahau (1973 – 1993) to  Katun 4 Ahau (1993 – 2012)

Let us now return to how mild paradigm shifts may look like and let’s imagine the example of someone who had become stranded on an isolated island with no communications from mid-1991 to mid-1995: a time period of around four years. On being rescued and on returning to society in 1995 this person would have been under the impression that things were more or less still the same as when they left. 

In the meantime, while he or she was away, trends such as music, fashion, technology, and attitudes had changed to the extent that by 1995 they fully embodied the general trends of the 1990’s, as opposed to  those of the late 80’s (and early 90’s). Our returnee may have been surprised to find that so many things had changed “virtually overnight”. However, having to face this new paradigm would not have thrown him or her completely off balance either, notwithstanding the slight culture shock that they were experiencing, because things had not changed enough for that to happen.

Note: There seems to be strong consensus amongst decadeologists that the actual cultural shift point between the 80’s and 90’s happened in 1993 and not in 1990 as one would have imagined. 1993 just happens to be the exact shift point from Katun 4 Ahau to Katun 2 Ahau. 

The Spirit of the Age – Katun 4 Ahau

By 1995 the general atmosphere in the developed world, particularly in the English speaking countries, incorporated some, or all of the following characteristics: a general positive outlook for the future and a sense that peace was increasing in the world (it was still post Cold War and politically speaking the world was warming up again); a relatively good level of civility and courtesy amongst people and a live-and-let-live philosophy; strong individuality in the sense of personal autonomy; a relatively good level of trust amongst people; a relatively strong concern for the environment; mostly free-range childhoods; just the right amount of technology to not to take over people’s lives.

Spirituality seemed to be in a revival and books such as The Alchemist and The Celestine Prophecy were popular. The television series Friends was growing in popularity and would later become one of the most watched television series of all time. The film Groundhog Day was notable for its depiction of the trials and tribulations of personal development in a humorous and entertaining way.

Shift Point 2012: From Katun 4 Ahau (1993 – 2012) to Katun 2 Ahau (2012 – 2032)

Lets return to our example of a castaway with no communications, but this time lets imagine that the person was away from mid-2010 to mid-2014: also a duration of about 4 years. The actual shift point was in 2012, but the transition took a couple of years to manifest and there was some overlap both ways.

On returning in 2014 they would perhaps have been surprised to see virtually everyone, young and old, walking around with Smartphone’s or other forms of personal mobile devices. That trend had already started in 2010, but it was much less ubiquitous back then. However, by 2014 social networking had more or less completely taken over all social and non professional communications.

As for music, art, fashion and creativity, there seems to be consensus on decadeology forums about the lack of much new and original happening and that there was a general lack of quality in the early and mid twenty-tens.

The Spirit of the Age – Katun 2 Ahau

By mid-2014 and especially by the start of 2015, the general atmosphere in the developed world already incorporated some of the following characteristics: a general negative outlook for the future and a growing sense that peace was decreasing in the world (2014 was a record year for world conflicts) ; a much deteriorated level of civility and courtesy amongst people, especially online; a victim-hood mentality with the attitude that the world and other people owed people something; weak individuality in terms of personal autonomy combined with high levels of group conformity and finding personal identity in group identity; rapidly deteriorating levels of trust amongst people; a limited concern for the environment; childhoods featuring parents being over-protective on the one hand and outsourcing their parenting to teachers and personal devices on the other; personal technologies having in general more or less completely taken over people’s lives.

Other features were that gender relations were taking a turn for the worst, race relations were deteriorating, sectarian, cultural and religious conflicts and their negative effects were dominating the news more than ever and protests, especially in the developed world, were visibly increasing – and were becoming ever more violent. While some of these protests seemed to have legitimate causes, others seemed to be for superficial or artificial reasons and it often came across as if people were protesting “for the sake of it”, or simply to be part of group activities. 

The Book Fifty Shades of Grey crossed the 100 million sales mark in 2014, whilst amongst others, television series such as Black Mirror and  Game of Thrones were getting huge ratings on television. On the big screen the Hunger Games – Mockingjay was raking it in at the box office.

The Yin and Yang of the Katuns

Naturally, neither of the above examples tell the whole story – all ages have their positives and negatives, balance and imbalance and dark and light. However, the atmosphere of Katun 4 Ahau was very well balanced in general, while Katun 2 Ahau is rather unbalanced in comparison, to put it mildly.

The Spirit of the Age of each of these two examples conform on a basic level to the symbolism found in their numbers, known as Tones: 4 = balance & harmony; 2 = duality & polarity. That’s not to say that there’s not more to it, or that positive things are not also happening, but the positives are clearly less evident than the negatives in the Spirit of the Age of Katun 2 Ahau (if compared with Katun 4 Ahau). 

Dealing with Duality                

On the surface of it then, with having some perspective of how the present Spirit of the Age differs from the one before, it should not be too difficult for us to conclude that there are various things that we can do in order to work with the elevated levels of polarity present in this age.

More than anything, a starting point for each individual could be to define their personal values clearly. Continuously shifting energy, a strong feature of Katun 2 Ahau, is likely to test individual integrity and group values on a regular basis by highlighting inconsistencies, double standards and hypocrisy.

With the influence of the Fifth Element assisting in exposing inconsistencies, the ideal energetic circumstances have thus been created by the universe to prompt the clarifying and refining of personal values and personal beliefs, whether ideological or otherwise. Learning how to clearly distinguish between right and wrong in reference to one’s conscience is after all one of the very objectives of the principle of duality within the context of human spiritual development.

Paradigm Balancers and Pillar Raisers

There are also other things we can do to avoid falling into the natural traps of polarization: We could revert back to levels of etiquette and social behavior as practiced during Katun 4 Ahau; we could treat people online in the same way as we treat people off-line; we can set boundaries, show respect and insist on mutual respect in return; we can wean ourselves off excessive use of personal technologies and set time aside for personal development; we can assume more personal responsibility in shaping our social culture; we can foster self-responsibility within our children and promote that in society in general, thereby dissolving the all-pervasive victim-hood culture present in the developed world today.

The Tzolkin as a Guidance System

Positive values, traits and characteristics are naturally embedded in the energies of the day in the sacred Maya Tzolkin calendar. By following the Tzolkin on a daily basis and by paying attention to the higher qualities contained in the combined energies of each day, we can acquire, embrace and come to embody natural, organic and consistent universal values that would not only serve our selves, but would also serve our communities and our environment, regardless of the Katun that we are in.

At the same time it would strengthen conscious personal autonomy and individual identity by getting to know our intrinsic archetypical traits on an individual level. Moreover, it would make us more prepared for dealing with some of the real paradigm shifts that we will be encountering during the rest of Katun 2 Ahau.   

Continue to Part 4

J.J. Montagnier is a futurologist and travelosopher based in South America. He has an interest in anthropology, mythology, psychology and spirituality. His writings on the Mayan calendars are influenced by his knowledge of Jungian psychology and are also intuitively inspired. The author visited Central America in 2015 to do research on the subject.

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This article has been written for general consumption and some concepts have been simplified. The views and opinions are those of the author.  Creative license has been applied to make some concepts more accessible.

Copyright © 2017 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café

Please note: References to and excerpts from this article may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content: please use the  page address (URL) in the browser.

Internet Resources:

http://www.city-data.com/forum/history/1729747-did-early-90s-still-feel-like-3.html

http://www.city-data.com/forum/history/1729747-did-early-90s-still-feel-like-5.html

http://www.city-data.com/forum/history/1729747-did-early-90s-still-feel-like-6.html

http://www.city-data.com/forum/history/1729747-did-early-90s-still-feel-like-7.html

http://www.city-data.com/forum/history/1729747-did-early-90s-still-feel-like-8.html

http://www.inthe00s.com/index.php?topic=53991.0http://www.inthe00s.com/index.php?topic=53991.60

http://www.jaguarwisdom.org/2012.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_armed_conflicts_in_2014

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_number_of_conflicts_per_year

http://www.un.org/pga/70/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2016/01/Conflict-and-violence-in-the-21st-century-Current-trends-as-observed-in-empirical-research-and-statistics-Mr.-Alexandre-Marc-Chief-Specialist-Fragility-Conflict-and-Violence-World-Bank-Group.pdf

Main resources:

The Book of Destiny – Unlocking the Secrets of the Ancient Mayans and the Prophecy of 2012, by Carlos Barrios (published in 2009). [1] [2].

The Mayan Prophecies – The Renewal of the World 2012 – 2072, by Kenneth Johnson, (published in 2012).

The Maya Katun Prophecies, by Bruce Schofield (article: Alternate Perceptions, 1996).

The Book of Chilam Balam of Chumayel, by Ralph Roys (published in 1933).

The Long and Short of the Mayan Calendar (Published in The Mountain Astrologer, Dec 2004 /Jan 2005) By Bruce Scofield

The Fifth Earth – Energy Transitions (Part 2) – The Valley of Shadows in the Landscape of Light

Cahal Pech – Archaeological site, San Ignacio, Belize. Photo by JJM (2015)

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Note – this article refers to the Original Mayan Prophecies listed in Part 1 (updated)

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The Valley of Shadows in The Landscape of Light

After Dark

So-called “dark ages” are not only dark. They are also light. Although we tend to view dark ages with some trepidation, or perhaps even with fear, they serve an important role: It is during dark times that we seek out our own light and the light of others. It is dark times that show up the shadows in the world and bring them up to the surface. It is only by being confronted by darkness that we can truly aspire to light. Thus, from darkness comes light.

One cycle leads to another and one prepares us for the other. In other words, the whole process should be approached with a certain attitude: An understanding that cycles, whether light or dark, are evolutionary in nature and in purpose, and that we are able to work with these energies, either way.

The Mayan Fifth World, a 5125 year Great Cycle that started at the end of 2012 is said to hold immense opportunity for spiritual growth. Presently we are still transitioning into the Fifth World, while slowly pulling out of the Fourth. By seeing the opportunities that this transition holds for personal transformation we can all become conscious co-creators of the new world as we transition.  

Knowing the Energies

By knowing the characteristics of some of the energies we are able to know how to work with them. Knowing the energies can allow us to step over some of their negative manifestations and traits and we can know how to fully experience and gain from their positive aspects and influences. This happens by honoring the symbolism of the energies by integrating their purpose in our thought processes and by applying that to our daily living. When we don’t know about these energies we are at their disposal rather than the other way around.

The easiest way for newcomers to the Mayan calendars to start knowing about the archetypes that embody the energies is to follow the sacred Tzolkin calendar on a daily basis. This opens up a broader understanding of the cyclical nature and the interactions of the characteristics of the various energies with each other. For example, the continuity from one cycle to the next becomes apparent and the repetitive nature of them in an altered form every time, in a gradual, never-ending, cyclical, but overall linear progression of renewal eventually comes into view. 

Where we are presently

Presently (from 2012 to 2032) we are in two very long light ages and one short dark age. Oxlajuj Tiku is a 676 year cycle that started in 1987. The Mayan Fifth World, is a 5125 year Great Cycle that started at the end of 2012. Both of these long cycles are considered to have energetic characteristics that are positive, so these are two ages of light. Katun 2 Ahau is a 19.7 year short cycle that started on 22 December 2012 and will end on 7 September 2032. This short cycle has symbolism and energy that relates more to a negative cycle, or dark age, due to its polarity.

Katun 2 Ahau appears to have the strongest influence right now, as shorter cycles have a tendency to be stronger in overt influence. The two underlying cycles of light are currently more subtle in their influence. Their influence will increase as time progresses within the context of cycles flowing in a wave like motion, with a wave being low in energy at its start and high at its peak.

What we are going through

Katun 2 Ahau, that started in 2012 and ends in 2032, will be followed up by another 19.7 year short dark age, Katun 13 Ahau, which ends on May 25, 2052. These two volatile Katuns add up to 39.4 years in total. Afterwards, on May 26 2052, Katun 11 Ahau will follow which would be a 19.7 year age of light. However, as mentioned before, and it is always worth keeping in mind: no dark age has ever been without light and no light age has ever been without dark. Essentially we are passing through a temporary dark phase during an overall long period of increasing light. Put differently, we are traversing a valley of shadows on the edges of the new landscape of light.

Where we are going to

Symbolically speaking, the year 2052 should be very significant, because from that year onwards we will be in three light ages at the same time, overlapping and blending with each other. It would also be the point at which, if all goes well, we should complete the forty year Fourth to Fifth World Great Cycle transition phase. By then the energies of the two underlying long light ages would have grown stronger in influence and we would have pulled out of much of the Fourth World’s influence. The Fifth World’s gestation period should commence around 2052 and most of the transition turmoil should be behind us. 

Premature Fear and Ecstasy

The Mayan Fifth World’s energy will only be fully active in a couple of hundred years when all growth stages; transition, gestation and maturation have been completed. Virtually everyone who wrote about 2012 forgot to factor these in, which explains why “nothing happened” on 21 December 2012. That date simply marked the beginning of a 40 year long transition phase, which would then be followed by two more phases, and we are only 5 years into the first phase at the time of writing in 2017. The upside is that the world didn’t end and we still have time to prepare for the changes ahead. 

Focusing on the Horizon

Naturally our main interest is in completing the transition process successfully, because this will take up most of the rest of our lives. It is however very important to remain cognizant of the bigger picture in order to know where we are going to, so that we can make it through to 2052. While symbolically keeping that arrival point in mind and knowing where we are heading, we can then focus more specifically on the immediate and near future: the next 15 years – the rest of Katun 2 Ahau (we will do so in-depth in a future installment.)

Transition, Gestation & Maturation

Please see the list of cycles and prophecies in PART 1

Before we continue further, it is important to be aware of how the transition period has been calculated. Although specific information about the duration that a Great Cycle’s transition phase takes to complete is hard to come by, we do know that all cycles have transition, gestation and maturation phases. Fortunately, details about the duration of time of transition phases of other cycles are available, for example in the case of the 676 year Oxlajuj Tiku cycle that started up in 1987.

In The Book of Destiny we learn from Carlos Barrios that the Oxlajuj Tiku cycle’s transition phase lasted about five years – from the cycle’s starting point in 1987 until 1992. Following that there was a gestation period of 9 years, from 1992 to 2001 and then finally there was a period of maturation that lasted for another 13 years, from 2001 to 2014. In other words this cycle only became fully active 27 years after it had started.

By using the Oxlajuj Tiku cycle’s details we can thereby make a somewhat basic, or perhaps rudimentary, calculation to arrive at the approximate length of the great cycle’s transition length. The main objective of this exercise is not absolute accuracy, but to illustrate that the transition phase alone will last at least several decades. 

The amount of times that 676 (length of the Oxlajuj Tiku cycle) fits into 5125 (length of the great cycle), which is: 7.581 times (seven point five eight one), can be multiplied with the length of the Oxlajuj Tiku’s transition stage, which is 5 years. (The Oxlajuj Tiku cycle is 7.581 times smaller than the great cycle.) 

This gives us a rough estimation, proportionally speaking, of the transition length for the Great Cycle. The result is more or less 38 years (37.9 years to be exact) and that figure matches quite closely to the 39.4 years of the combined length of time of the Katuns 2 Ahau and 13 Ahau – and it also roughly coincides with the dates of those two Katuns: 2012 – 2052.

Energetically speaking it makes logical sense that the transition stage from the Fourth to the Fifth worlds would happen during the last two Katuns in the last 256 year Katuns cycle of the Fourth World,  and that those two Katuns would also happen to be two of the most volatile Katuns overall. It also just happens to be that these two Katuns overlap from the Fourth World into the Fifth World, meaning that they are exactly placed in the position where a transition from the one age to the next is meant to happen. This much is also alluded to by Bruce Scofield, in his article, The Maya Katun Prophecies.

Everything has purpose

It becomes clear to anyone who studies this subject that there is an energetic process at work in the universe. If there is a process at work there must be purpose to such a process. Becoming aware of these energy cycles gives us a glimpse of the evolutionary processes organised by the hidden hand of the universe. Every stage of development has purpose and each stage is a preparatory stage for the next stage, whether dark or light.

As Above, so Below

As has been pointed out before, the Fifth World is prophesied to ultimately result in a state of harmony after the transition, gestation and maturation stages have completed. However, for humans to be compatible with such a state or condition implies that they would have to go through a significant spiritual transformation or even a spiritual transmutation process during the transition phase. 

To date – most probably due to comfort zones and distractions – it would seem that humans in general are most likely not going to be taking the initiative to transform themselves in time – and indeed, it is questionable whether the majority of people have the wherewithal of doing so. Besides, we have almost run out of time in terms of altering our approach to resource depletion and climate change. 

Thus, one could argue that hypothetically speaking, in order to assist humanity with an internal transformation – a prophetic requirement for entering the Fifth World – the external environment would have to change profoundly in order to bring about such a huge internal change within people.

This scenario fits the prophecies for Katuns 2 and 13 Ahau very well. The energies are lined up exactly as they should be in order to bring about a grand renewal of the world, internally and externally.

Why am I here, now?

At this point we may wonder why we as individuals have to go through this process. If we factor in the journey of the soul in Mayan mythology, than we may wonder why we, as journeying souls, would choose to be here, right now. Why would we not choose to arrive in the world at the peak of a Great Cycle when spirituality and consciousness would be at a peak? Surely that would be much more enriching and much more fun? The answer is that we have, perhaps, chosen to be in the world at a point that holds the highest potential for spiritual growth and such times are not necessarily meant to be the easiest of times, spiritually speaking.

If we choose not to take responsibility for being here, we can simply let all the changes sweep us along and hope for the best (and very potentially find ourselves caught short.) Alternatively, we can take responsibility for being here at this time and consciously assist in the birthing of the New World – and by doing so we would arrive at our full potential as participating humans in the cycles of life. 

Individual Purpose

In order to participate in the renewal of the world, individuals need to become familiar with their own purpose and destiny. That can be achieved through the sacred Maya Tzolkin calendar and The Maya Cross. These tools are ideal for comprehensive self-discovery and readers are encouraged to start exploring their place in the world and to become acquainted with their deep authentic inner selves, which would automatically lead the way during the transition into the Fifth World.

In the next article we will delve into the Spirit of the Age of recent and future Katuns and consider how we can use this Katun to prepare for the next one. This will illustrate how both hindsight and foresight, in the context of the Mayan calendars, can be very useful in the real world.

Continue to Part 3 >> 

In-depth Mayan Cross readings can be ordered from Mayan Majix and Kenneth Johnson.

Daily sacred Tzolkin posts with integrated mythology can be found at Mark Elmy’s site The Four Pillars. 

Free personal Mayan Cross summarised reports can be found at My Mayan Sign. 

J.J. Montagnier is a futurologist and writer based in South America. He has an interest in anthropology, archeology, mythology, psychology and spirituality. His writings on the Mayan calendars are influenced by his knowledge of Jungian psychology and are also intuitively inspired. The author visited Central America in 2015 to do research on the subject.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Receive instant notifications for future articles by subscribing to Gypsy Café

This article has been written for general consumption and some concepts have been simplified. The views and opinions are those of the author.  Creative license has been applied to make some concepts more accessible. 

**

The following main sources have been consulted during the writing of this article:

  1. The Book of Destiny – Unlocking the Secrets of the Ancient Mayans and the Prophecy of 2012, by Carlos Barrios (published in 2009). [1] [2]. 
  2. The Mayan Prophecies – The Renewal of the World 2012 – 2072, by Kenneth Johnson, (published in 2012).
  3. The Maya Katun Prophecies, by Bruce Schofield (article: Alternate Perceptions, 1996).
  4. The Book of Chilam Balam of Chumayel, by Ralph Roys (published in 1933).
  5. The Long and Short of the Mayan Calendar (Published in The Mountain Astrologer, Dec 2004 /Jan 2005) By Bruce Scofield

Copyright © 2017 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café

Please note: References to and excerpts from this article may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content: please use the  page address (URL) in the browser. 

Plaza A with Structure A1, Cahal Pech, San Ignacio, Belize. Photo by JJM (2015).

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The Fifth Earth – Energy Transitions (Part 1) – Apocalypse Now

Temple view, Yaxhá, Petén province, Guatemala (Photo: JJM – 2015)

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*For background on the Mayan Fifth World and the Fifth Element, please see: The Maya World Tree

Apocalypse Now

The first five years of the new Great Cycle, The Mayan Fifth World, have probably turned out much less apocalyptic than initially forecasted, considering the dire predictions for 2012, notwithstanding a lot of upheaval since then. In the years leading up to 2012 many leaders and their followers in the Mayanism movement threw bits and pieces of a broad selection of prophecies from a range of indigenous peoples of Mesoamerica, North America (and sometimes even Asia) all together and then projected them onto one day, December 21, 2012. By doing that all context and time frames were lost and since then the majority of self-proclaimed experts have disappeared into the proverbial ether – and perhaps we could be forgiven for being somewhat critical of their approach in retrospect. 

However, when you do a more in-depth analysis of the original Mayan prophecies, you come to realize that it’s early days yet. Energetically the most volatile times of the overall shift of ages are still ahead of us. Very significant events can be expected to occur during the next thirty five years and they will have to do with metaphysical as well as physical energy configurations.

The Original Mayan Prophecies

The original Mayan prophecies originate from within various aspects of this ancient civilization’s rich history and culture, a culture that has spanned over more than 12000 years, by Mayan estimations [1]). Today, many of their prophecies are still accessible and can be found in various places, (a) such as in the Mayan Codices that had survived the Spanish conquest, for instance in the books of Chilam Balam; (b) in ancient Mayan mythologies, for example in the Mayan creation story, and on various stone stellae at archeological sites in Mesoamerica; (c) on murals in excavated Mayan pyramid inner rooms and (d) on preserved ceramics displayed or found in museums and private collections and (e) several of the ancient Mayan calendar systems have prophecies naturally embedded within them by design.

Serious modern day scholars and archaeologists would usually refer to some or several of the above mentioned sources. There are also prophecies that had been passed down from generation to generation through folklore and by word of mouth and they would usually be unknown to those outside the Mayan culture.

This article and the one following it will selectively focus on accessible Mayan prophecies from authentic sources that are specifically relevant to our discussion. Our purpose is to consider the prophecies which can be correlated with real events that have taken place in the not too distant past and we will look at the symbolism of the prophecies for the near and the intermediate future.

Time, Space and Energy

First, in order to have a general understanding of how the Mayans perceived and measured time, a few time related concepts need to be taken into account first: The Mayan perception of time encompasses energy and space. Everything contains, and therefore, is energy. The energies measured or followed, emanate from the earth, the four directions and from the cosmos and everyone is affected by them.

For the Mayans, time is circular and cyclical, depending on which aspects of it are being measured, but in the long run there is an overall linear progression. Time is measured for different reasons and with different objectives. The calendars interact with each other to form cycles (or circles) within cycles. Some Mayan calendars measure agricultural cycles, while others measure human cycles and yet others are used for ceremony or prophecy. There are as many as twenty Mayan calendars in existence, but several of them have fallen out of use for various reasons.

In contemporary modern terms, few people would normally be conscious of these energies, but all people are probably subconsciously conscious of them. For example, sometimes these energies can be felt or sensed. Days, weeks and even years, “feel” different from others. However, outside of Western astrology, the idea that time periods could have different energetic patterns which could have actual practical, literal or physical effects, is not taken very seriously.

Archetypes and Symbolism

Mayan archetypes, deities or gods were assigned to express, depict and present the characteristics of these energies. Thereby, time and energy were given “shape”, so to say. The traits and characteristics of these archetypes, deities and gods would then “embody” the nature of the ages, in order to understand and “see” them better. This gave time dimensional qualities that go far beyond the concept of time simply being measured as an arbitrary linear process.

Ages, millennia, decades, days and events were mapped symbolically through this method and they were also integrated within the Mayan hieroglyphic writing system. In this way the Mayans were always conscious of their position in time. They knew where they were on each day, they knew where they came from, and they knew where they were heading to, all within an energetic and symbolic context, while it also had practical implications within their community contexts.

This is the ultimate gift that the classic Mayan civilization has left to the world, and it is especially relevant during these times that we live in.  Simply put, since people in the modern world don’t generally sense the subtle energies and their influences on a daily basis, systems such as the Mesoamerican calendars can be of immense value in providing a map of the unknown. Not only that, it can allow us to anticipate the general characteristics of future time frames within particular time periods, as the Mayans did.

Circles, Cycles and Linearity

The circles and cycles that come around again or return, are never absolutely the same every time. They have similar characteristics, but it is worth remembering that there are smaller cycles (and circles) within larger ones, the very large ones stretching many thousands of years into the past and future. As all these cycles turn and interact, almost like cogs in a grand energetic mechanism (or rather, organism), not all of the larger wheels would be at the same place every time when a cycle recurs.

For example, 19.7 year time frames known as Katuns, with particular characteristics, come around every 256 years (the length of the entire cycle of 13 Katuns). However, a 19.7 year Katun happening during the beginning stages of a great cycle of 5125 years would not be exactly the same as the same Katun happening somewhere in the middle of a great cycle. That is because the entire cycle of 256 years would fit into 5125 years several times over (20 times to be exact) and the great cycle would be at an energetic peak in its middle part (about 2500 years into it) while it would be at an energetic low towards its end or beginning. Therefore at the great cycle’s high point, the 19.7 year Katun would be affected by the peak energy of the 5125 year great cycle, whereas at the end of the great cycle that Katun would be affected by the low energy of the great cycle. (What is meant with “high” or “low” will be explored in more detail later.)

Therefore prophecies can only ever be a guideline to how things may turn out.  Nevertheless, the accuracy and power of the prophetic Mayan calendars should not be underestimated. That is, if we can manage to read them, considering their complexity. During the rest of this article and its follow-up installment(s) we will make a humble attempt towards doing so.

The Ending of Cycles

We are now going to take a brief look at the endings of several significant cycles, which are also automatically the beginning of new cycles, while also very briefly considering the characteristics or prophetic relevance of each one. Later on (in the next installment) we will delve into some of the deeper symbolism of the specific prophecies related to the ending of these cycles:

  1. The 468 years dark Bolom Tiku cycle that ended in 1987: This was the end of a long dark age (and the beginning of an age of light, called Oxlajuj Tiku that will last 676 years.) In the immediate years after this cycle ended major events unfolded, such as the fall of the Berlin Wall (1989), the end of the Soviet Union (1991), the end of Apartheid (1991-94) and the beginning of the Northern Ireland Peace process (1994).
  2. The 5125 year 4th Great Cycle, also known as the Mayan 4th World, that ended on 21 December 2012: This was the end of a very long cycle ruled by masculine energy and the element of water. It was also the beginning of the Maya Fifth World which is meant to be ruled by both masculine and feminine energies and would have the combined four elements of the previous four cycles, namely: Fire, Air, Earth and Water, plus a new element – Ether. (We are five years into this new cycle at the time of writing in 2017. NoteThe Fifth World is prophesied to ultimately result in a state of harmony after the transition, gestation and maturation stages have completed. However, for humans to be compatible with such a state or condition would imply that they would have to go through a significant conversion, transformation or even a transmutation process.
  3. The 19.7 year Katun period named 4 Ahau that started on 6 April 1993 and ended on the 21st of December 2012: Throughout the ages this Katun has had strong spiritual qualities, but included a lot of upheaval too. During this recent 20 year cycle there was a powerful revival of Eastern spirituality and philosophy within the West and the New Age movement grew with leaps and bounds.
  4. The 19.7 year Katun period named 2 Ahau that started on December 22, 2012 and that will end on 7 September 2032: This was the beginning of a 19.7 year period that symbolically and energetically have strong qualities related to polarization and major upheaval, while there are positive elements and aspects to this period too. (At the time of writing we are 5 years into this phase.)
  5. The 19.7 year Katun period named 13 Ahau that will start on 8 September 2032 and will end on May 25, 2052: This is a 19.7 year period that has been determined to be dark and is symbolically the most unstable of all the Katuns, with the world usually being turned upside down, symbolically and literally.
  6. A relatively long prophetic Katuns Cycle of 256 years that started in 1796 and will end in 2052. This is the entire prophetic Katuns cycle (also known as the ‘short count’) – thirteen consecutive 19.7 year periods.

Note: The last couple of Katuns in the 256 years cycle are always considered to be unstable and they usually include the collapse of systems and structures. According to prophecy, shortly afterwards the beginning of a brand new 256 year prophetic cycle would usher in a new dawn and a complete rejuvenation of the world.

Katuns 2 Ahau and 13 Ahau mentioned above in numbers 4 and 5 are the last two 19.7 year increments in this overall 256 years cycle. Basically these two Katuns constitute the winding down and final collapse of the old world, before the new world arises from the ashes.

Why are these cycles important?

The first three cycles mentioned above provide immediate reference points for events that have already taken place. We will use them in one of the following installments to determine whether they indeed signified any real changes in terms of real world events. If so, for example in the case of the changeover from one Katun to the next, we will then be able to illustrate that each Katun embodies a generational “spirit of the age” (in Western terms also known as a ‘zeitgeist’). 

This will help us to prove that the shifting or changing of the spirit of the age seems to happen relatively abruptly from one short age to the next, but not from one very long cycle to the next, due to the gestation and transition periods being much longer. For example, many people were surprised that nothing happened at the end of 2012, but we are currently still accelerating deeper into the “birth canal” of the transition between the two Great Cycles and many more changes are bound to be experienced as we continue along. 

The rest of Katun 2 Ahau (5 years have already passed at the time of writing) and the entire Katun 13 Ahau will happen during the next 35 years, between 2017 and 2052.

The entire Katuns cycle of 256 years (listed as no. 6 above), will end in 2052 and this is probably the most significant ending of all the cycles. If we are lucky we (humanity) should exit “the birth canal” around that time. However, at that point we would have to “learn how to walk” within the context of the new configuration of the energies.

Importantly the next 35 years could potentially be experienced (lived through) by the majority of people alive today under the age of fifty. Those of us who are going to be around will have to deal with the upcoming changes. The younger the person, the more likely it is that they would experience most or all of it, depending on location, circumstances and events. Ultimately everything would depend on everyone’s attitude towards the whole process. 

In the next installments we will take a closer look at the prophecies related to the cycles listed in this article and extrapolate further from there. We will also consider the purpose of some of the energies from a human development point of view and look into how we can work with them. First we will look at the concept of dark and light ages (published). 

This article has been written for general consumption and some concepts have been simplified. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.

Continue to Part 2: VALLEY OF SHADOWS IN THE LANDSCAPE OF LIGHT

J.J. Montagnier is a futurologist and writer based in South America. He has an interest in anthropology, archeology, mythology, psychology and spirituality.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Receive instant notifications for future articles by subscribing to Gypsy Café

**

The following main sources have been consulted during the writing of this article:

  1. The Book of Destiny – Unlocking the Secrets of the Ancient Mayans and the Prophecy of 2012, by Carlos Barrios (published in 2009). [1] [2]. 
  2. The Mayan Prophecies – The Renewal of the World 2012 – 2072, by Kenneth Johnson, (published in 2012).
  3. The Maya Katun Prophecies, by Bruce Schofield (article: Alternate Perceptions, 1996).
  4. The Book of Chilam Balam of Chumayel, by Ralph Roys (published in 1933).
  5. The Long and Short of the Mayan Calendar (Published in The Mountain Astrologer, Dec 2004 /Jan 2005) By Bruce Scofield

Please note: References to and excerpts from this article may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content: 

http://gypsycafe.org/2017/05/14/the-fifth-earth-energy-transitions-part-1/

COPYRIGHT © 2017 · ALL RIGHTS RESERVED · GYPSY CAFÉ

The Fifth Sky – Tuning In

Lake Yaxhá, North-East Petén, Guatemala. Photo by JJM (2015)

*For background on the Mayan Fifth World and the Fifth Element, please see: The Maya World Tree

Mayan Mythology and Symbolism

The Mayan Calendar constitutes at least three calendars in contemporary terms which are used to map different cycles, but there are at least twenty Mayan calendars in total. For the sake of brevity and simplicity we can summarize that the most important thing to know about the Mayan calendar systems is that time is cyclical. As cycles return they tend to have the same or similar characteristics and features. In that sense similar events can be expected to happen again. Mayan shamans can therefore make reasonably accurate forecasts within symbolic and archetypal contexts. Western scholars can attempt to do the same, but with varying results. Some of the symbolism can be misinterpreted by them, or taken too literal, or the cycles and dates are sometimes mixed up.

When you travel to Central America and meet with the descendants of the ancient Mayans in the former Mayan lands, for example the indigenous peoples of Guatemala, Belize or Honduras [1], it’s unlikely that you would find many in the region who would make predictions in the way that Westerners would. They would rather refer to their ancient mythology or perhaps to wisdom passed down through the ages by word of mouth, but there is a great reluctance to speculate about any “endings”. A grave error that many Western scholars in the Mayanism [2] movement has made, is to have predicted various types of Mayan calendar related endings. This has caused a lot of confusion amongst people with an interest in the subject.

It would therefore be better to do one’s own research by consulting a variety of sources and by focusing on content provided by serious historians and scholars known as Mayanists [3] (as opposed to sources from within the Mayanism movement). Having said that, in this research subject there will always be a degree of speculation involved on the part of outside scholars. Interpretations are part and parcel of the research and learning process and cannot be avoided altogether. In fact, it is indeed the predictive aspects or components of the Mesoamerican calendars that hold so much interest to scholars worldwide.

In Kenneth Johnson’s book, The Mayan Prophecies [4], we learn that for the Mayans, time reveals itself by unwinding cyclically, which means that time is already pre-mapped – energetically and archetypically. The Mayan calendars have been formulated and designed to accurately follow and study these cycles and patterns as they interact with each other.  The energetic features that the calendars hold interrelate with the ebb and flow of human consciousness. In the larger cycles of the calendars human consciousness is mapped as rising and falling over many centuries, in a wave-like motion. At the start of each 5125 year cycle consciousness rises and at the crest (in the middle) it reaches a peak and then descends.  This concept is mapped similarly in the Vedic belief system [5].

Human consciousness would therefore be at a relatively low level at the end or beginning of each cycle. That means that in December 2012 (at the end of the Mayan Fourth World) human consciousness was not at a high point, a theory that had been put forward by some scholars in the Mayanism [2] movement. In fact, notwithstanding our technological advances, humanity is currently in a slump, or perhaps very much in the doldrums regarding consciousness.

The idea that humans reached or started to enter peak consciousness in 2012 (or in 2011 already) is therefore clearly incorrect. Not only does it not bear out when you take a critical look at the mapping of consciousness in various ancient belief systems, but you arrive at the same conclusion when you take a critical look at many factors in actual reality in society today (as is being explored in the series: New World Within on this website [6]).  

Interpretations

Please note: the following paragraphs contain interpretations arrived at by the author and are not necessarily the view of Mayan day keepers or elders, except where stated otherwise:

In the Mayan creation story , the Popol Vuh [7], the sky is lowered (“falls”) at the end of each world cycle. It is then raised again. So far the sky has been raised four times and we are currently in the space between ages before the next sky is raised. As a thought experiment: if we take “the sky” as a metaphor for human consciousness, then the sky “falling” takes on significant meaning: At the end of each 5125 year world age, as consciousness diminishes; systems, structures and thought processes related to it, become unstable or “challenged”. Subsequently they start to show strain or start to crumble. The consciousness aligned to the old energetic direction would be out of sync with the new incoming direction.

Although one would expect that from the ashes of the old would rise something completely new (and that was likely the case during previous transitions), we have to keep in mind that this time the directional flow of the energies are more or less doing an about-turn in some respects. This would be the first time in 20 000 years (within the context of the Mayan Five Worlds concept) that energy will not move outwards towards one of the cardinal directions, but will turn inwards and move towards the centre.

One can therefore expect that there will be a return to some of the old ways, blended in with something completely new. However, that’s not to say that people would voluntarily align themselves with this partial back-to-the-past “regression” as some would view it. The truth is that humans are not necessarily consistently naturally harmony-oriented yet. At this stage of human evolution we are still evolving to such a state. 

Let’s analyze this further, by first summarising: We know that during the first four world ages the energy expanded outwards into each one of the four cardinal directions and we also know that during the fifth age the energy will be moving inwards towards the centre (For more information on this point, please see: The Maya World Tree). Therefore, it would follow that a turnaround point would be reached at some stage, and that shortly after that point the directional energies would find themselves in direct opposition or in conflict with each other. Due to its already strong momentum, the expanding energy (see “1” below) is likely to continue moving outwards, while the contracting energy (see “2” below) would be moving inwards while building up momentum.

To test this theory we should therefore look at real-life events: We could speculate that generally speaking the outward and inward moving energies contain more or less the following characteristics in terms of identity, and that we have already observed some of these (surprising to some) energetic movements play out in recent world events such as in the case of Brexit in the UK and in the results of the United States’ presidential elections at the end of 2016:

  1. There had already been a trend of expanding energy that had been moving away from intrinsic individual core identity (known as the Self in Jungian terms) towards a type of universal identity only distinguished by local varieties or flavors. A reflection of this can be observed in global consumer culture with its ever expanding selection of “consumer identities”. This energetic trend had over time moved away from traditional forms of group identity such as national, cultural or language related identity and placed its group identity in political ideology and gender orientation (identity politics and gender-ism). Followers of this trend has shown a tendency towards being opposed to identity related to traditional or conservative values. This means that these types of identity groups are often at odds with groups that had formed their identity naturally through established and traditional methods.
  2. A “new energy” or trend has appeared recently which once again associates individual core identity with self-defined personal values, or values that are found in more traditional types of group association, such as cultural, national, language or heritage related identity. This “new energy” benefits from the fact that there is a base of traditionalists and conservatives who had over time become marginalized because their politics had fallen out of fashion during the rise of popular progressivism, but the new “reversing energy” trend has given them a voice again.The reasons for this is that not everyone who found themselves in the outwards expanding energy movement wanted to move so far away from the political centre or from their own personal identity centre, and therefore many individuals who had been swept along by the ever expanding outwards moving energy felt they had gone too far and so they took the opportunity to move back over to the returning, contracting, more traditional, “reversing” energy. These events were reflected in the strong turn-out of voters that favored Brexit in the UK and in the results of the US presidential elections at the end of 2016.

These two “energy movements” seem to be generally contrasted by the one having an expansionist or global-oriented world view, which tends to support the idea of open or no borders, whereas the other seems to favour a more localized or regional world view with an orientation towards a return to protectionism and well defined and well controlled national borders.

These events reflect and highlight the importance of identity in general and the fact that human identity is a core factor in the overall energy shift as far as humans are concerned. In a future segment we will look at the practical reality of the future of these two energies and delve deeper into them within the context of a global energetic contraction, a feature that is expected on various internal and external levels within the Maya Fifth World.

Conflict Resolution:

Let’s take a look at the expected nature of masculine and feminine polarity within the context of the Fifth World. The following information is reproduced here exactly as it appeared in an article written by Maya day keeper and spiritual guide Carlos Barrios in 2006:

– The first cycle was of a feminine energy and fire was the element that ruled it.

– The second cycle was of a masculine energy and earth was the element that ruled it.

– The third cycle was of a feminine energy and air was the element that ruled it.

– The fourth cycle was of a masculine energy and water was the element that ruled it.

– The fifth cycle is of harmony between the masculine and feminine energy and the element that will rule it will be ether. [8]

Here we notice immediately that during the Fifth world, we are not returning to a cycle ruled by either masculine or feminine energy, but that we are entering a cycle that will be energetically conducive towards harmony between the two. This may be somewhat disappointing to people who have been looking forward to (or have set their hearts on) “ruling” from a gender perspective. However, considering the collapse in gender relations in recent years, perhaps now would be a good time to pause and reflect upon whether harmony between the sexes would really be such a bad thing (?). People seem to have forgotten that there was a time when the two genders got on reasonably well.

Significantly, it would be the first time in 20 000  years (within the context of the Mayan five worlds concept) that neither the masculine, nor the feminine energy would dominate. That doesn’t mean that male/female polarity would disappear, but that the potential for conflict would be largely reduced, energetically speaking. Potentially we in the West may even (re)learn how to complement each other again as men and women, instead of being in perpetual competition. That possibility in itself may be tantalising enough to celebrate (and not only for nostalgic reasons), but there’s no doubt that high drama and conflict are currently favored pastimes for many gender oriented groupings in Western populations, as can still be observed on a daily basis at the time of writing (in 2017).

These recent “political turnings” that we have observed are not viewed by everybody as “moving forward towards harmony”. To the contrary – and perhaps with good reason. However, as has been mentioned before, sometimes when pendulums swing too far, an over-correction can be expected. The situation is sometimes that “passengers on pendulums” who simply tend to go along with the general flow of things may not become aware that the pendulum they are travelling on could be due for a natural correction because it has swung too far. This can happen when people become set in their ways.

For example, gender equality in the developed Western World has been reached in many countries to varying degrees (some time ago already), yet acknowledgement of that remains either completely muted or is non-existent. In many cases the borders between rights and privileges have become blurred, and it could be argued that the previously disadvantaged have in many cases already arrived at more favorable conditions than their counterparts across the gender line. That however has not stopped many, if not most, gender-oriented groupings from continuing to claim victimhood as a matter of course.

There is no doubt that some of these issues will remain controversial and that many people will in the meantime simply continue on their trajectories. Nevertheless, from an energetic standpoint a more balanced trajectory with harmony as its final arrival point is already under way, but some turbulence may be expected along the way. The role of the Fifth Element having entered the post-2012 scene, is to illuminate our dispositions within the above contexts and to especially illuminate our shadow sides, to ourselves and to others. In this way the universe can assist many of us in motivating us towards self-correction where we are clearly out of tune with the new directional flows of the universe.

Once those individuals who are naturally drawn to this process are sufficiently centered and grounded and have their intentions more aligned with overall harmony, they should be perfectly poised as balanced proactive co-creators of the Fifth World in order to raise the Fifth Sky from within their core Selves and towards the symbolic energetic centre of the Fifth World, which they have already vision quested.

These themes will be explored further in the next instalment. This is the third part in a ‘mini series’ – an article published in parts. Continue reading

Part one is here: The Fifth Element

Part two is here: The Fifth World

Part four is here: The Fifth Earth (Part 1)

Also see: Shift of the Stages

J.J. Montagnier is an intuitive creative writer. He is a student of mythology, ancient cultures, philosophy, psychology, sociology, politics and metaphysics. His writings are inspired and influenced by his world travels, personal observations, intuitive insights and deep study of relevant and related subject matter. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.

Please note: References to and excerpts from this article may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content:  http://gypsycafe.org/2017/03/08/the-fifth-sky/

Copyright © 2017 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café

Resources:

  1. The author travelled in the region in 2015.
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayanism
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayanist
  4. http://www.jaguarwisdom.org/book.html
  5. https://vedanet.com/2012/06/13/secrets-of-the-yugas-or-world-ages/
  6. http://gypsycafe.org/new-world-within/
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Popol_Vuh
  8. Prophecies from the Mayan Elders, March 2006 by Carlos Barrios (.Pdf)

The Fifth World – Towards Harmony

Five Level Pyramid – Yaxhá, North-East Petén, Guatemala. Photo by JJM (2015).

 

*For background on the Mayan Fifth World and the Fifth Element, please see: The Maya World Tree

The Fifth World

Where we have come from, where we are now, and where we are going to

2012 Revisited

Prior to December 2012, scores of Mayan calendar enthusiasts, authors and scholars had put forward a plethora of predictions, forecasts and interpretations about what would or could happen around certain dates in 2012. The dates, when they finally arrived, were accentuated by the fact that nothing of note happened. There were no signs that a long awaited and highly anticipated new Golden Age was about to commence, as had been fervently predicted. Neither did major earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes or floods occur worldwide (all at once!)

In reality, transition stages between 5125 year world ages are by some Maya estimates meant to take approximately 120 years [1a]. Other Maya based calculations put it closer to 200 years [1b]. Changes happening during such long transition periods are therefore very unlikely to become apparent “on day one”. However, such were the expectations in December 2012 that something was going to happen, that there were people who took the day or week off from work, while others headed to the countryside “just in case” [2]. The majority of people, however, took a sober view and brushed it all off as superstition.

In retrospect, a lot of people may be wondering why so many people responded so “irrationally” in 2012. From a depth-psychology point of view, the 2012 “mass psychological event” was much more than just mere superstition. It was a reflection of the power of the “archetype of the end”. This archetype was identified by well known Swiss psychoanalyst, C.G. Jung back in the 1950’s. [3]

There must have been something that had made a major impression upon the human psyche (repetitively) for this archetype to be so deeply embedded in the collective subconscious (aka collective unconscious) and to make such a strong mass appearance every now and again. From a Jungian perspective all archetypes have purpose and in this case the archetype was a message from the collective subconscious of humanity that major change was upon us and that it would manifest over a period of a few decades.

The Fifth World

According to Mayan Daykeeper and spiritual guide, Carlos Barrios [4], there is an expectation that the Fifth World would (eventually) bring a time of harmony, while there is also a clear expectation that great turmoil and upheaval could be expected during the transition to it. This has always been the case during all transition phases and is reflected not only in Mayan mythology and history, but also in the history of the world. This is confirmed by author and scholar Kenneth Johnson, in his book, The Mayan Prophecies [5]. During his research he could not find any evidence of the previous world transitions having gone without upheaval.  

Let us consider what is actually happening right now. Just about five years ago (in 2012) extreme political and cultural polarization hardly featured in Western nations. At the moment they threaten to tear some of them apart. According to Carlos Barrios, Mayan elders believe that at the start of each new world age, the energetic polarities between Yin and Yang (left or right;  dark and light; right or wrong and so forth) become highly accentuated, which could explain why the energies are presently so conducive to a high degree of polarity.

During transition stages a reconfiguration of energies takes place which can cause significant turmoil. This stems from there usually being major resistance to some of the changes caused by the new directional energetic flow. These energetic shifts have an impact on human consciousness and behaviour, but people are not usually conscious of what is happening, which can cause people to act “out of character”; or put differently, it can cause people to act from their lower-self instead of their higher-Self.

The big picture is that in the long run we are heading towards the centre – towards balance and towards harmony – and we are already on our way there (energetically speaking), but we are still in the very early stages of this shift. Many people are not yet aligned to the new overall energetic direction. In fact, currently the majority of people are probably out of line with it, especially and perhaps particularly where the polarizing forces of aggressive identity politics and extreme political correctness are at play.

Neither of the above mindsets are conducive to tolerance or harmony, in spite of what they presumably stand for. This can be clearly observed in world affairs today. However, holding on to the old (world), while resisting the new (world), is simply prolonging and exacerbating the intermediate turmoil which is a recurring feature of world-age transitions.

As responsible co-creators of the Fifth World, each one of us should reflect upon the position we find ourselves on the polarity scale, in terms of our attitudes and actions, and consider how far we have moved away from or closer to harmony, balance and our personal centre. This will assist us in knowing whether we are in, or out of tune with the energetic vibration of the Fifth World.

Due to polarity, everything ultimately strives for natural balance and equilibrium, and in the end will attempt to self-correct. In complex systems this process is known as homeostasis [6]. For example, when a pendulum swings too far in one direction an initial over-correction may occur when it returns. In this context a rebalancing of energies is probably way overdue, considering the current state of the world. A lot of instability is therefore almost inevitable  and can be expected to feature during the next few decades. (This will be illustrated further in future articles.) 

One way that individuals can purposefully centre themselves sufficiently in order to avoid being excessively sucked into the drama and turmoil, is to find their own individual personal centre. This deep individual core that resides in each and everyone is also known as the higher-self or the Self in Jungian terms. Each person who returns to their core is contributing towards harmony and is acting as a catalyst of transformation for those around them. This is because the higher self naturally tends towards contributing towards stability, which motivates others to do the same. Individuals who have found their inner core therefore act as a stabilising force, simply by being who they naturally are during unstable times. To be continued… 

These themes will be explored further in the next instalment. This is the second part of a series:

Continue to part three: The Fifth Sky

Part one is here: The Fifth Element

Also see: Shift of the Stages

J.J. Montagnier is an intuitive creative writer. He is a student of mythology, ancient cultures, philosophy, psychology, sociology, politics and metaphysics. His writings are inspired and influenced by his world travels, personal observations, intuitive insights and deep study of relevant and related subject matter.

Copyright © 2017 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café

Resources:

  1. a.) Information provided verbally by a guide at Tikal archaeological site in Guatemala, during a visit in 2015. This estimate probably refers to the combined transition and gestation periods from one great cycle to the next. b) This would refer to the combined transition, gestation and maturation stages from one great cycle to the next – for more information please see later articles where these time periods are explored in detail.
  2. Due to the 2012 phenomenon colleagues of the author took time off from work and the author read about people who went on retreats ranging from one to three weeks.
  3. Jung and the Archetype of the Apocalypse: http://jungiancenter.org/jung-and-the-archetype-of-the-apocalypse/
  4. Prophecies from the Mayan Elders, March 2006 by Carlos Barrios (.Pdf)
  5. The Mayan Prophecies, The Renewal of The World, 2012 – 2072 by Kenneth Johnson
  6. Homoeostasis: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeostasis

The Fifth Element – Illuminating the Shadows

Lake Petén Itzá - El Remate, Guatemala, 2015. Photo by JJM.

Lake Petén Itzá – El Remate, Guatemala. Photo by JJM (2015).

 *For background on the Mayan Fifth World and the Fifth Element, please see: The Maya World Tree

**

Introduction

The Fifth Element

Five years have passed since December 2012; we are five years into the Mayan Fifth World and the Fifth Element has entered the scene. We are in a new age of transparency and below-the-surface shadows are bound to be illuminated while submerged debris is likely to float to the top. Whatever is hidden may be exposed and the only way to deal with this alchemical process, is to put one’s own inner house in order.

While there are people who have already been introspecting by way of traditional or spiritual practices, serious self-observation or deeper inner reflection may be something relatively new to others. However, as time passes, not exposing one’s true self will become increasingly difficult. This may be positive news for people who already live from their authentic selves, while it could turn out to be a somewhat uncomfortable experience for those who have not yet discovered or have not developed their intrinsic individual identity – and who do not live from their higher selves. 

Typically, individuals and groups who avoid facing their inner shadow-sides, tend to project them onto others. The objective of doing that is to divert attention away from their lower selves and what they are up to. This is a well-know psychological phenomenon. However, in an age of added transparency such projections would be much more obvious. As one finger points at others, three fingers point back. This causes emperors to wear no clothes by exposing themselves, while insisting on remaining oblivious of the fact. 

Continue to: The Fifth World

This is the first part of a ‘miniseries’ – an article published in parts.

Related: The Shift of the Stages

J.J. Montagnier is an intuitive creative writer. He is a student of mythology, ancient cultures, philosophy, psychology, sociology, politics and metaphysics. His writings are inspired and influenced by his world travels, personal observations, intuitive insights and deep study of relevant and related subject matter.

Choose Conscience

Choose Peace Through Conscience

Peace Mural, Belfast, N. Ireland (2004). Archive photo by JJM.

When faced with difficult choices, especially amongst bad options, conscience can always show the way. Needless to say, what the planet needs right now, more than ever, is a return to conscience. Conscience lends itself to a variety of peaceful solutions.

Moral relativity does not fit well into the realm of a well developed and active conscience. Conscience intuitively knows the difference between right and wrong. What is appropriate or correct within a given context or what is not. What is creative and what is destructive. What is life-giving and what is life-killing. What is nurturing and what is eroding. What is authentically (not superficially) progressive and what is truly regressive.

Not all situations call for distinctions to be made, but when they do, a healthy conscience would normally step in automatically. Of course, conscience interacts with ethics, etiquette, morality, religion and other frameworks for rules of conduct, but personal conscience can and does act autonomously, and will override externally imposed morality, where necessary. As long as conscience is maintained, conscience is the only inner guiding system which has almost full  independence and autonomy. It is independent from the ego-self and the group-self and it is autonomous in prompting one to correct one’s course.

Conscience will override questionable morals and will adjust approaches and actions accordingly. Conscience is an autonomous guidance system within, whereas morals depend on customs and norms without. The more relative morals become in a society as a whole, the more consciousness dims collectively and the more unconscious society becomes as a group. It is during such times that inner conscience is especially needed to guide individuals.

Only a very small percentage of individuals are born without any conscience at all – and they are considered to be “disabled” (psychologically), meaning that they don’t have the full range of emotions and feelings that would usually be accessible to the average person. They are also unlikely to ever develop (a) conscience. Other than these exceptions, conscience holds much more universality than ethics or morals do, and therefore we would be much better off aspiring to universal conscience than universal morals or ethics. A healthy conscience leads to expanded consciousness on an individual level, which is expressed on a universal level.

The small percentage of conscience-less (without conscience) individuals we find in society are naturally the proverbial  “foxes” as described in the Chicken Little fable (See Parts 5 & 7) and we find them in all walks of life. However, there is a significant percentage of average individuals who eventually revert to similar behaviors after having lost (or given up) their consciences as they went along. Very often a conscious decision was made to do so, in order to gain certain advantages. The nature of conscience itself does not allow for it to be given up unconsciously, so the suppression of conscience is certainly a conscious process initially and subsequently the decision is swiftly put out of mind and henceforth avoided at all costs.

If the majority of individuals in a society learn to suppress their conscience – to the extent that a general moral relativity sets in – and once the virtues of conscience are lost by adults in general, they are unlikely to be instilled, cultivated or strengthened within children either. When a society has more “foxes” than “chickens”, parasitism, prejudice, projection, exploitation, bigotry, double standards, hypocrisy, abuse of power, corruption and the active destruction of old value systems ensue and a general regression leading to potential repression sets in. A strong accompanying feature of such a scenario is often decadence.

It has been determined that historically mass decadence (and sometimes war) has almost always preceded the collapse of civilizations. In other words, the idea of the destruction of values on the basis of them being “old fashioned” or “conservative” in order to facilitate decadence (boundary-less living) often have unintended consequences, because all systems need structure in order to function, externally and (importantly) internally – structure being what value systems are meant to provide in societies and civilizations. No limits, no restrictions, no boundaries, means no structure, which results in a vacuum. In a big enough vacuum, collapse is inevitable.

Therefore, going forward, decisions and choices based on conscience may be the only available tool to rescue (individuals in) a declining civilization from internal (and external) collapse. Conscience can save individuals, and in the present day context, the world.

By JJ Montagnier

Building the New World Within (11) – Happy Go Lucky – Faster!

"Fried Grey Matter"

“Fried Grey Matter” – Street Art, Montevideo, Uruguay. Photograph by JJM.

Click here for PDF version

It’s All Theatre

Tabloid press, reality TV, TV talk shows, social networking and, perhaps, increasingly also, modern-day politics have all got something in common – they contain similar ingredients to those found in soap operas. A trademark of soap opera is that the less exemplary elements of human behaviour are exaggerated and dramatised for effect. A hallmark of the tabloid press is the use of emotional and sensational language which draws readers into the drama.

Gossip and the lives of others had always been of interest to people, but tabloids converted sideshows into the main show. This growing preoccupation spread into other mediums, too, and eventually it went well beyond the lives of only the officially rich and famous. Despite, perhaps, a few protestations to the contrary, those designated as celebrities hardly shy away from being in the limelight. As the saying goes: “All publicity is good publicity”, and over time being famous has taken on major significance in modern societies.

By introducing “real-life” elements into the mix, reality TV took the soap opera concept a step further. Selected members of the public could now become famous, too. They would brush shoulders with genuine celebrities and, just like them, have large audiences observe and follow their every move. Taking a cue, perhaps, from soap opera, participants could spice up and dramatise their actions and activities for effect, bringing greater audiences and improved ratings with regard to the shows and themselves.

In these shows, participants were becoming adept at promoting themselves by sometimes being outrageous, controversial or provocative. Audiences were lapping it up and learning from it, too. Reality TV was hugely popular for its novelty value at first but, in due course, the concept influenced and was blended in with various other genres. Some of these shows, at least to a small extent, contain(ed) educational elements such as the celebrity chefs series. A particular type of TV talk show – which came to be known as “Trash TV” – preceded reality TV by a couple of decades already and was based on outrage creation and stirring up animosity amongst participants.

Initially, as with the tabloid genre which slowly spread around the world, not everyone considered the depiction of the lowest common denominator on television as being optimum entertainment. Many viewers actively avoided soap opera, trash TV and reality TV. The majority of professionals preferred to continue reading their broadsheets and magazines. Likewise, discerning television viewers continued to opt for quality TV programmes. On the other hand, more than enough readers and viewers were becoming eager consumers of dramatised and sensationalised entertainment and news media.

That humans have always been intrigued by the weird, the outlandish and the obscure is not in doubt, and an apt analogy would be that the modern-day version of “freak shows” increasingly came to town in some of these shows on a screen and in a newspaper near you. In the press, the tabloid media formula continued to spread and, eventually, even organisations once-known as conservative and well-established news publications adopted the model or blended it in.

Tabloid newspapers had already been using “tabloid headlines” for decades to prompt people to buy the paper. The “tabloid language” used in news content contained special “tabloid vocabulary” (short, emotional and ambiguous key words) to create intrigue which draws readers into the emotional drama. These days, online tabloid-style headlines are referred to as “click-bait”.

Slowly – but surely – the “tabloidification” of close to the whole spectrum of mass media has come about, and it is more or less standard fare today. Although many people grumbled over the loss of quality reportage during the process, consumer interest in serious news media has dwindled along with the quality. Those interested in in-depth analyses and serious factual reporting have to make the effort to seek out alternative news channels; however, the majority of people, it seems, are unlikely to make the effort.

Switching Channels

In the meantime, people’s attention and interest were being occupied elsewhere. Social networking platforms had been around for a while already and were growing exponentially. Here, potential celebrity status and the possibility of becoming famous were taken to a whole new level – perhaps to “the ultimate level”. These platforms offered the ability to achieve (small-scale) “fame” almost instantaneously. Members of the public were provided with their own broadcasting channels. Prior to that, only the few who had made it onto reality TV or TV talk shows had such opportunities – except for those (including sports stars) who had become real celebrities either through traditional methods or by pure luck.

It’s Showtime!

Given the already strong craving from the general public for fame, the arrival of social networking was like opium to the masses. Everyone could now generate their own audiences in a variety of ways and be in charge of their own public image campaigns. By enhancing social media profiles and sometimes by presenting themselves in dramatised ways by being sensational and provocative, instantaneous feedback would arrive and audiences would grow. It was showtime for everyone!

Soon, “being relevant” socially would be measured by – or associated with – having a strong social media presence or not.  Those who were not on social media were considered to be  almost invisible, or they essentially “did not exist”. Not everybody wanted fame, but hardly anyone wanted to be “irrelevant” either – and this remains true today. Therefore, the motivation for participating in social media and social networking was and always has been very powerful. For many, being in the loop and having access to current social events supersede almost everything else, despite the potential side effects of possible overexposure.

While older members of society can clearly remember these still relatively recent changes, younger people who grew up with technology and self-promotion have no other reference points. That narcissism has become rife is, therefore, not necessarily considered a problem, but rather an essential element for functioning optimally within society’s current social (media) paradigm. Neither is the drop in the quality of news necessarily perceived as a big issue, because a lot of news is delivered by “citizen journalists” through social media which, of course, does have its merits.

The downside is that news feeds on social networking platforms blend real news with social news. Everything happens in “real” time, is treated equally and, due to an avalanche of information, is usually soon forgotten. There’s not much time to read beyond headlines either way and even if there were, the loss of quality news reporting virtually across the board means that the wider context and background or comprehensive understanding and insights are rarely covered.

Life was Hard

Let us contrast receiving constant feedback online with life offline, where feedback (for living your life normally) is not only not guaranteed but is generally lacking, except for feedback from family members and close friends. This is, perhaps, one of the reasons why “life as it used to be” (before social networking) was perceived as being hard. Having to go through life on one’s own is somewhat of an alienating experience for many people. It is not surprising then that a medium such as social networking would be eagerly embraced.

Social media removes the possibility or necessity of having to be alone or lonely – ever. On the other hand, it leads to becoming dependent on constant support, affirmation and validation. Having so much – often artificial or superficial – support could provide plasters for basic insecurities, which would usually have had to be worked on within, personally and privately, with limited external support.

Internal strengthening processes can essentially only happen in relative isolation by, for example, becoming accustomed to dealing with negative thoughts or feelings privately. For example, where personal growth is required, introspection would identify the areas in which that would need to happen. Various approaches can then be followed, from reading on the subject to purposeful exposure to relevant real-life situations and circumstances with post-event reflection, which would then further consolidate resolution and growth.

A somewhat hard life – along with an independent struggle – is a necessary requirement for becoming emotionally self-sufficient and for developing a strong individual identity. Reaching full maturity in terms of full personal autonomy and wholeness is a lifetime’s process and requires ongoing conscious self-evaluation.

By being digitally connected at all times, continuous external support is never lacking and the time for deep self-reflection is reduced. In many ways, life’s direct harshness is filtered out. One could rightfully ask: “Who wouldn’t want that?” The result is that this unfortunately translates into many people unwittingly developing co-dependencies with their electronic devices and the remote feedback they receive through them, where such dependencies didn’t exist before.

Self-sufficiency and Autonomy

Traditionally, we used to share our successes and important personal events with family members or close friends. Constantly laying our lives bare to general acquaintances or complete strangers is a phenomenon particular to the social networking realm.  Being capable of living our lives independently, largely without much recognition at all, used to be a measure of being a mature adult in the world. This used to be “the burden of reality” which we all had to carry after entering adulthood, but it naturally instilled a sense of self-responsibility which resulted in self-confidence.

You had to get on with life and excel in it without being able to bask in constant accolades. Most of the time, your only reward was an inner sense of self-achievement, despite the odds. People were not overly concerned (or obsessed) with the lives of others. They were too busy making it in the real world just like everyone else, and society had little sympathy for perceived victimhood. Life was hard for virtually everyone, and you were expected to take the lemons you were handed and make lemonade with them.

Autonomous functioning was usually drummed into children from a relatively young age by parents who understood what the real world would hold once their kids were ‘”out there”. Thus, most parents avoided sheltering their children too much. Depending on the country or region, this changed over time as giving constant praise and providing unlimited support became a new model. The expectation and need for constant validation and affirmation that we witness today, not only amongst children and teenagers but well into adulthood, can at least partially be ascribed to this approach.

Ironically, the previous generations succumbed to the reorientation of parenting models and child-rearing in contradiction to all the experience, knowledge and wisdom that they had attained through how they were raised. Having said that, there is no doubt that many in the older generations thought that their childhoods had been unduly harsh. Indeed, a well-known reason cited by parents for having spoiled their children or for not having challenged them more is that they wanted to spare their kids the hard upbringings that they themselves had to go through. However, raising children in an unstructured way may well pave the way to societal decay, as can be observed today. [1]

Recognition and Instant Fame

Before the idea of fame became so interwoven into modern society, instant fame was an exceptional event. People were too grounded in reality to consider it important or to spend an inordinate amount of time pursuing it. It was potentially achievable (people dreamed about it back then, too), but was dependent on extraordinary natural talent, out-of-the-ordinary circumstances or a major lucky break. Recognition within one’s job sector was easier to attain. Working hard, earning your dues and fighting for recognition; developing your professional skills and honing them; becoming a master of your arts; building up experience and real-life connections and eventually becoming a real expert in your field usually led to well-earned recognition from peers.

Not unlike today, celebrity status usually came about within certain entertainment sectors such as cinema, television, fashion, the music industry and theatre. Being attractive was advantageous or was even the main requirement in some instances. Even so, these sectors were relatively small and difficult to break into. The possibility of a lucky break into the celebrity arena, therefore, had a powerful and enticing appeal. Nevertheless, for the most part the average citizen knew that it remained a far-fetched notion, reserved mainly for daydreaming.

New Show in Town

Cue social media where almost all obstacles were removed. “Instant fame” could now be attained within a couple of hundred mouse clicks, even by teenagers – perhaps, especially by teenagers. Of course, this type of “fame” might have been relatively lightweight, but for the ego it was (and is) fame nonetheless. With no barriers to entry, except for knowing how to use the internet, and with the motivation brought about by the knowledge that “everyone’s at it”, having a significant online presence became for many people almost the only way of feeling that they were relevant. It is, indeed, true that young people are often ostracised from their real-life social circles should they not also participate online. [2][iv]

The problem is that without having fully formed real-world identities before that process is transferred online, identity development is transferred to, and continues in, an environment where different rules are at play and where the dynamics lean strongly towards the narcissistic.

Changing Frequencies

In the digital age, many children report that they feel emotionally neglected at times, specifically due to their parents being distracted by their personal devices. Paradoxically,  children do not spend sufficient time alone with themselves either (within safe environments) due to the constant presence of their mobile devices. [3]

Considering this context, attention-seeking strategies and habits are prone to be developed beyond what would usually be the norm. It is, therefore, not surprising to find that children often revert to their computers or Smartphones to seek out compensating validation and affirmation through self-promotion on the internet. When the online social media world becomes a regular source of emotional feedback, it can become a crutch to lean on at an early age.

Older people who had moved online later in life, but who spend excessive time acting out their online persona(s), risk experiencing a sense of loss of a part of their real or authentic self, even when they had a strong sense of self prior to their online lives.  Due to neglect, the authentic-self may eventually recede into the background while the online persona(s) come more to the fore.

In an ideal world – one that already exists, but one that many people have left behind – children would have a combination of sufficient direct unfiltered emotional input from their parents, but they would also spend sufficient unfiltered time on their own, in order to figure themselves out for themselves. In such an ideal world, adults would balance their online and offline worlds in order to not lose track of their core individual selves nor their loved ones.

Social Media and the Persona

In the traditional and real world of direct human interactions, you can boost your persona only so much. Although pretence and vanity are tolerated in small measures, people tend to see through them rather quickly. During face-to-face interactions, a certain level of legitimacy is required, and continuous superficiality is counterproductive towards fostering authentic and genuine long-term interpersonal relationships.

In the social networking realm, persona-enhancing is the whole idea. Different rules of legitimacy are at play, such as social proof and group association, and the vast majority of people don’t know each other beyond their avatars. If most interpersonal interactions happen online these days, it can be easily deduced that real-life character development has taken a major back seat. Persona-polishing and avatar-enhancing, for which no amount of time seems to be excessive, are the norm.

Posers and Followers

Offline, we do not post notes on the windows of our homes to announce what we are up to inside. Neither do we stick notes on our car windows to announce where we are going and what we are going to do there. We also do not add additional notes to our windows to provide updates. If that were the case, we would not be able to see through our windows. Peering closely into people’s lives (“windows”) in real life would certainly be frowned upon. Yet, following the minutiae of people’s lives online, which they willingly display, is completely acceptable.

Exhibitionism and voyeurism are human tendencies that reside in everyone. They may be given expression outside the online realm at times, but generally they tend to remain relatively dormant, hidden or suppressed due to natural societal expectations. However, in the social networking sphere these elements are given the opportunity for full expression, albeit in an altered format but within a framework of it being completely normalised. Where narcissistic exhibitionist tendencies were always discouraged in the real world, the opposite is true in the social media sphere.

Virtual “posers” and “followers” can now post notes on their own interactive tabloid press pages (virtual “windows”), while their counterparts and “online passersby” follow their news and updates. Posers and followers take both roles interactively while keeping multiple interactions going with other followers, posers and passersby. Validations and affirmations are exchanged for small changes made to profile statuses, and everyone keeps the dance going.

It is usually only when the dancing stops (or slows down) that inevitable withdrawal symptoms set in and replenishing efforts start up soon afterwards, either consciously or unconsciously. These enhanced mutual-affirmation emotional feedback-loops tend to eventually become integral for daily functioning.

Happy Chemicals

We rarely think about the technical functions or elements of our minds, but continuously working in the background are brain chemicals and hormones which act as influencers and drivers. They interact with our emotions and also produce physiological reactions and sensations. Some of these neurotransmitters and hormones are known as “happy chemicals” because of the way they make us feel when they are activated. No wonder then that we seek them out. Not only do we seek them out, but we tend to do so repetitively in habit-forming ways. Sigmund Freud’s pleasure principle can most probably, to a degree, be ascribed to this phenomenon.

Happy-Go-Lucky Faster

The greatest positive advantage of the internet is that we have information at our fingertips and if we are discerning and selective enough, the internet can be hugely beneficial. A case in point is the multitude of resources available on brain chemicals and how they function, which fills in the picture and shines a light into some of our blind spots.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that (amongst other things) has a motivational function which  causes us to experience anticipation for what we need or would like to achieve in life. This results in us striving towards our objectives. We are then mobilised to act decisively in pursuing our interests and in seeking them out. Dopamine is released as soon as we close in on our subject or our goal. During long-term projects, dopamine would be released shortly before each stage or milestone is reached, and this would drive the person forward to the next stage until the project is completed. [a, b, c]

Th internal opioid system works in conjunction with dopamine and provides the feel-good satisfaction of a job well done after completion (of each stage) or the pleasure experienced after finding something you were looking for. [b]

However, we can get additional dopamine and opioid rewards (and get them faster) from frequent social networking updates. For example, milestones can become the amount of shares, likes or “friends” that we accumulate and going after more milestones keeps us going. 

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that (amongst other things) motivates us to improve our position or status in life through a sense of wanting recognition, respect or appreciation; receiving positive feedback from role models, superiors or peers builds confidence – and confidence releases serotonin. For example, building up credibility within a community through authentic actions and interactions would be worthwhile because subsequent natural positive feedback would be the result (as explored in Part 8). [a, b,e]

In terms of personal growth, the objective would usually be to reach a stage where a person’s self-worth is solid enough to go through life without expecting or needing excessive validation or feedback. In other words, by having a natural sense of one’s intrinsic qualities and real-life achievements and successes, one’s serotonin levels remain elevated and are produced organically (intrinsically).

However, we can get additional serotonin rewards (and get them faster) from receiving instant positive feedback by frequently posting about our achievements online. Even posting about trivial matters, such as what we are doing or eating in the moment,would provide feedback.

Oxytocin is a hormone which (amongst other things) motivates us to seek out the company of people we can trust in order to bond with them. We are, therefore, motivated to seek out like-minded people and groups. When entering groups in real life, it usually takes time to be fully accepted or incorporated, but once accepted we would regularly receive our oxytocin rewards which are experienced as a ense of belonging and of being part of a group.

When one-to-one friendships or relationships form over time, they usually reach a point where there is enough trust for both parties to drop their guard and to relax into it; at that point, a bond is formed. Oxytocin is released, and it will be released regularly whenever the two persons subsequently meet or connect – for as long as the mutual trust lasts. [a, b, e].

However, we can get additional oxytocin rewards (and get them easier and faster) by joining online groups; we can then support their causes or can “virtue-signal” a group that we are “one of them”.

Adrenalin is a hormone that has to do with fight or flight, but can motivate us to see stressful situations through. For example, an adrenalin rush during a stressful exam can provide the energy and motivation to keep a clear head and get through it. Although adrenalin is usually linked to fear, it can cause a rush which many people experience as pleasure when it is triggered in a controlled environment. For example, to relieve boredom and to feel alive, people would often seek out controlled adrenalin rushes. The most co-mmon would be extreme sports such as bungee jumping or skydiving. Aggressive direct physical or emotional confrontations would also release adrenalin, but are avoided due to the real possibility of their resulting in physical harm due to negative feedback. [e]

However, adrenalin rushes can also be found remotely (fast, frequently and safely) through online gaming, online trolling and (in more extreme cases) by participating in “online lynching”.[iv,v]

Happy-Always-On

As we know, external drugs, such as nicotine, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines and others, overstimulate brain chemicals, but so do online gaming, social media and social networking –just somewhat differently. “Happy chemicals” such as dopamine, opioids, serotonin and oxytocin are not designed to be “always on”, but with the advent of mobile devices they are rarely switched off. [f]

“It’s All Good”

Sometimes, any feedback can become “good feedback” with the differentiation between it being positive or negative having faded out. In such cases, “feedback is feedback” because it is the stimulation that the user is after. The need for kicks means that negative feedback can be a substitute for positive feedback and is often easier to obtain. For example, being controversial, shocking and insulting in forums or on social networking tends to trigger stronger responses at a higher rate, which would explain why some people troll. [v]

This is corroborated by research done in Japan which identified a subset of dopamine neurons which are stimulated by negative feedback instead of positive feedback. [4]

“More is Better”

A common feature of spending time on the internet is that people spend more time on it than they intend to. This has to do with the dopamine and opioid mix. Dopamine motivates seeking behaviour, and opioids provide the rewards when finding what the seeker is looking for. However, research has found that the dopamine-motivated seeking behaviour is stronger than the opiate-provided rewards. [b]

Sometimes, people browse aimlessly for hours, looking for something without knowing what it is that they are looking for. Nothing they come across satisfies them sufficiently to stop browsing, only to eventually succumb to the urge to go offline once sufficient browsing-fatigue has set in. Due to the vast amount of information and content on the web, there is always more to find and (so the thinking goes), potentially, something better.

However, browsing social networking platforms excessively tends to have the effect of either comparing oneself with others (potentially resulting in low self-esteem) or of being drawn into some kind of drama playing off on it (which then triggers negative emotions and reactions).

Mobile Pinball Arcades

In the past, when a person left the shopping mall, the casino or the pinball arcade, for example, they gave their minds a rest. Besides, they only went there once in a while except if, perhaps, they had become somewhat addicted to shopping or gambling. Even so, they would not have been present at those places every waking moment of their day. Presently, life offline literally pales in comparison to life enhanced by the always-on mobile “pinball arcades” that an increasing number of people – perhaps, the majority – carry around with them.

Bouncing off the Walls

Feelings, emotions, sensations, affirmations, validations, laughs, jokes, jealousy, envy, blaming and shaming, anger and outrage (!), trolling and online-lynching – virtual theatre provides it all … and it’s just a touch-screen away. The intense emotional highs and lows experienced remotely through screens have our brain chemicals (constantly) “bouncing off the walls”.

Not Such a Happy Chemical

Not all brain chemicals have a feel-good effect. Cortisol, for example, produces negative feelings naturally and there is a reason for it. If we were euphoric at all times, we would become reckless. And so, the “unhappy chemical” is meant to bring us down to earth as a survival mechanism.

According to psychologist, Loretta Breuning (Ph.D.), unhappy feelings produced by cortisol are always present, but are masked by “happy chemicals”[a]. That is why we sometimes experience negative thoughts at random times. When our happy chemicals dip, the unhappy chemical filters through. The implication is that the less we are able to deal with unhappy thoughts, the more we may want to seek out happy-chemical rewards so they can mask the negative feelings or sensations. (There are, of course, cases where people have brain-chemical deficits or imbalances which would usually be resolved through prescribed medication – but those are the exceptions, not the rule.)

The purpose of the cortisol-induced negative feelings and thoughts that come through at times is to “send information” or “give a message” so that we can reflect upon what the message is and then potentially make adjustments to certain courses of action. According to Ms Breuning, if these messages or impulses are ignored or not paid attention to, more cortisol is released by the brain, typically causing the person to overcompensate even more by going after more happy chemicals. [a]

If we never learn how to take the time to deal with negative thoughts or feelings, because we are never away from our devices (in the case of younger people) or if we have fallen out of practice for the same reason, compulsive happy-chemical-seeking is a very possible outcome.

Merry-Go-Round

Social networking is not very content-rich in terms of quality information, and the “pinball arcade” factor is high. The satisfaction factor is thus equivalent to that of “fast food”, which, to use an analogy, is high on sugar, but low on sustenance. Binge-social networking is even more of a reality today than binge-eating or binge-drinking. The tasty bits in social networking are the social bits which are the equivalent of the sugar in fast foods (the more you eat, the more you tend to want to go back for more).

Stepping Away

Many people cannot understand why it is so difficult to step away from their screens. When it is being suggested that we should balance the time connected to personal technology with time away from it, it is commonly interpreted as insinuating that we should be “less happy”. The fact of the matter is that many people have become accustomed to experiencing “happy sensations” to a much higher degree and much more constantly compared to how they would have under normal circumstances without technology.

Everything in Moderation

The suggestion for balance is thus not suggesting that we should be “less happy”, but rather that we should aim to be happy more organically. This implies guarding against building dependencies on superficial, simulated and stimulated emotional feedback and responses and to rather source the real thing from fellow humans directly through in-person and face-to-face interactions.

Heads are Away

Clearly, we have created a lot of additional complexity in our lives by having embraced personal technologies to the extent that we have. A significant portion of people’s attention span and space for deep reflection and contemplation is constantly captured by social media (even when they are not on it, they still think about it) to the extent that many people are oblivious of many of the real issues facing the real world and humanity. In addition, what constitutes as being “real issues” have become obscured and relative to everything else, while whatever is “triggered in the moment”, due to online habits, tends to take priority.

Tunnel Vision

If all issues are relative, then what is relevant is only determined by what gets the most exposure or has “gone viral”. In this way, by living one’s life through modern media, one risks ending up with tunnel vision. What is not presented, featured or exposed by the channels we browse or subscribe to, is off the radar and “doesn’t exist”.

Ignorance is Bliss

Without stepping out of the mainstream and making a concerted effort to inform oneself and check all facts, ignorance as a constant is almost an inevitable result. This, ironically, contradicts the erroneous belief that by being connected, a person is automatically “in the loop” and informed. One might be in the loop socially, but whether that equates to being truly informed is, of course, highly debatable.

However, one could speculate that really being informed assigns a certain amount of responsibility in relation to various issues in life and in the world, because with knowledge human conscience comes into play. Hence, the popularity of the entire range of mind-numbing and escapist media tools available for our pleasure, which we eagerly consume.

Reality May Bite

Our increasing reliance on technology for everything, including our emotions, has made it virtually indispensable, while the near future almost certainly holds a world of vastly reduced energy and other resources. This means that the viability of many future technological solutions could become constrained. There is, in fact, a likelihood that in the future we may have to do without some of the modern technologies that we have already become accustomed to.

By being so distracted by what we are holding up right in front of us, we have potentially lost sight completely of the bigger picture. Therefore, the future described above is one which, for the moment, can hardly be fathomed in our current conceptualisation of a limitless world of absolute abundance; yet, this is a world that the majority of us will come to experience within our lifetimes.

According to Carl Jung, that which we avoid tends to meet us halfway on the road to our destiny (see Part 10). The questions that we need to ask ourselves are: “Do we care to open our eyes and look at what our destiny holds, in relation to our current trajectory?’” and “Do we dare to exit the tunnel and look at the bigger picture to see what has been creeping up on us ‘while we have been away’?” [7 – 15]

Big Picture News

Energy Transition
Research and important recent reports suggest that, it is most likely already too late to convert all human energy requirements into renewable energies in time before fossil fuel energies run out.  [7,8,9,10]

Climate Change
Due to the industrial world’s impact on climate change, temperatures are set to rise well into the future, even if we cut C02 emissions right down right away. [11,12,13]

Mass Extinction
The World Wildlife Fund reports that, due to the human impact on the planet, earth is already deep into the 6th Mass Extinction which may seriously threaten the balance of the entire planetary eco-system. [14,15]

Coming Down

A combination of personal self-reliance, the ability to contribute and function within a community context, and emotional self-sufficiency has always been regarded as a set of crucially important personal commodities during difficult circumstances. Those lacking the required skills to function within a partial return-to-basics paradigm, which is something we are bound to encounter in the years ahead, may find themselves challenged during the transitional process.

However, those who pay close attention to what is happening in the real world and seek out real news (while discerning facts from fiction and drama from reality) and prepare accordingly, both internally and externally, stand a much better chance of finding themselves on higher ground when difficult times roll around.

By J.J. Montagnier

Copyright © 2016 · All Rights Reserved · GypsyCafe.org

References to and excerpts from this article may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content – short link: http://wp.me/p4E4HJ-1aa

A shortened version of his article is available for publication – please contact the author.

References, Citations & Resources:

Articles:
[1]: http://www.parents.com/parenting/better-parenting/what-is-helicopter-parenting/
[2]:http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/10/12/compulsive-texting-takes-toll-on-teenagers/?src=twr&_r=2
[3]: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/children-reveal-hidden-sadness-parents-6228329

Research Papers:
[4]: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2739096/
[5]: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0030253

Presentations:
[6] The Future of the Brain by Baroness Susan Greenfield: http://tiny.cc/2p8lgy

Documentaries:
(i): The Outrage Machine: https://www.retroreport.org/video/the-outrage-machine/
(ii): Play Again:  http://playagainfilm.com/
(iii): Generation Like by Douglas Rushkoff: http://www.rushkoff.com/film-tv/
(iv): Cyberbullies: A Killer Network: http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/cyberbullies-killer-network/
(v): Troll Hunters: BBC – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06z68nn
(vi): Before the Flood: https://www.beforetheflood.com/

Brain Science & Related:
[a]: http://wisdom-magazine.com/Article.aspx/2885
[b]: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/brain-wise/201209/why-were-all-addicted-texts-twitter-and-google
[c]:  https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/mouse-man/200904/what-is-dopamine
[d]:  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2756052/
[e]:  https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-athletes-way/201211/the-neurochemicals-happiness
[f]: https://www.psychologytoday.com/files/attachments/59029/happy-chemicals.pdf

Big Picture News:
[7]: http://cassandralegacy.blogspot.com.uy/2016/05/a-100-renewable-world-is-it-possible.html
[8]: https://cassandralegacy.blogspot.com.uy/2016/07/some-reflections-on-twilight-of-oil-age.html
[9]: http://www.worldenergy.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/World-Energy-Scenarios-2016_Executive-Summary-1.pdf
[10]: http://www.endofmore.com/?p=1464

[11]: https://theconversation.com/what-would-happen-to-the-climate-if-we-stopped-emitting-greenhouse-gases-today-35011
[12]: https://www.epa.gov/climate-change-science/future-climate-change
[13]: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jun/13/carbon-dioxide-levels-in-atmosphere-forecast-to-shatter-milestone

[14]: https://www.worldwildlife.org/pages/living-planet-report-2016
[15]: http://www.iucnredlist.org/