Night Light interview

Barbara DeLong and I talked non-stop for two hours, Monday night, and we enjoyed it.

The show is available online, in any of three formats:

Youtube …

Barbara’s blog…

And as a podcast …

Night Light radio, Monday night

Tonight beginning nine p.m., EDT, I will be a guest on Night Light radio, Barbara DeLong’s two-hour Spiritually Speaking show, talking mostly about Awakening from the 3D World. At least, that’s where we’ll start. Where we’ll end up, who knows?

From Barbara’s website:

Welcome to the Night-Light/Spiritually-Speaking radio show, a forum for spiritual enlightenment, cosmic understanding and insight into those etheric realms that ever surround us. Host, Barbara DeLong and a wide variety of fascinating guests will be sharing with you spiritual information and philosophies that you can use to enlighten your lives and open you the creative sources you carry within. This venue allows me to reach out to greater numbers of you and to provide you with new insight and understanding to the times we are now experiencing. We will be covering everything from the mundane to the magical and will share all of these new paradigms with laughter and love. I hope you visit us regularly and use this resource to find your own inner lights to guide you along your spiritual pathways.


America’s Long Journey: Jackson and the Cherokee Removal


The story of the Five Civilized Tribes, as they were called, demonstrates at least two things. First, the Indians were able to adopt white man’s ways when they chose to, including literacy, fixed residence, even slave-holding and Christianity. Second, doing so didn’t spare them from their white neighbors’ racism or their greed for gold and land.

The five tribes were the Choctaw, Chickasaw, Cherokee, Creek, and Seminole. By the 1830s, under constant pressure from settlers, each tribe had ceded most of its lands, but sizable self-governing groups lived in Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida. All of these (except the Seminoles) had had adopted many of the colonists’ customs and had generally good relations with their neighbors. They didn’t want to move.

Unfortunately for the Cherokees, their land, as defined in an 1819 treaty, contained gold. The first gold rush in American history was sparked by the discovery of gold in 1828 in Dahlonega, Georgia, north and a little east of present-day Atlanta.

What phenomenon exemplifies greed and gambling-lust more than a gold rush? It is the perfect embodiment of get-rich-quick. Once the gold was discovered, first came trespass, then came politics, and then came exile. All quite illegal, but the white men had the money, the troops, the interested parties, and thus, soon enough, the legal decisions. In 1831, in “Cherokee Nation v. Georgia,” the Supreme Court said that the Cherokees were not a sovereign and independent nation, and therefore had no right to sue.

The story of the forced relocation of the Cherokee Nation from their lands east of the Mississippi to what is now eastern Oklahoma is a major blot on Jackson’s presidency. Most of the actual relocation took place in the presidency of his successor, Martin Van Buren, but the treaty mandating it was signed and ratified in 1836, when Jackson was in the White House. Cherokee relocation was opposed, and not merely by tender-hearted (and geographically distant) New Englanders like Emerson, but by frontier stalwarts like Davy Crockett and Sam Houston, both Jackson allies who on this issue saw the injustice of what was happening. So why did Jackson let it happen?

Partly, perhaps, from principle. To understand his position, we must see it with his eyes, not the eyes of posterity. In his first annual message to Congress as president, in December, 1829, he had called for Indian tribes either to relocate beyond the white man’s civilization, or conform to its uses. “This emigration should be voluntary, for it would be as cruel as unjust to compel the aborigines to abandon the graves of their fathers and seek a home in a distant land. But they should be distinctly informed that if they remain within the limits of the States they must be subject to their laws.”

(Fair enough, from the viewpoint of his society in his day, and perhaps two different kinds of society – one settled, one nomadic — could not live intermingled. But the Cherokees were living settled lives.)

Partly perhaps from practical politics. He was authorized by the Indian Removal Act of 1830 to negotiate to buy tribal lands in the east in exchange for lands west of existing state borders. With the nullification crisis brewing, he didn’t need to provoke another conflict over states’ rights by interposing the federal government between the Cherokees and the state of Georgia.

So, there came the Treaty of New Echota, exchanging Cherokee land for lands in the Indian Territory (eastern Oklahoma), signed in December, 1835, by small group of Cherokees who argued that it would be better to make a deal sooner (with the federal government), rather than later (with state officials and who knew what others). The following February, some 13,000 tribal members (of a total of 16,000 counted by the U.S. War Department itself ) signed protests saying that this treaty was not the will of the majority. Naturally, this being inconvenient, it was ignored. The treaty was ratified by the Senate (by a single vote) in May, 1836, and the tribe was given a two-year grace period to move “voluntarily” to the Indian Territory.

A few hundred did, accepting government funds for subsistence and transportation. Most did not. As the deadline neared, President Van Buren sent U.S. General Winfield Scott to enforce the treaty. Scott arrived at the Cherokee capital of New Echota in May, 1838, in command of about 7,000 soldiers and state militia. They removed men, women, and children from their homes at gunpoint and gathered them in camps, then marched them overland to departure points at present-day Chattanooga, and put them onto flatboats and steamers.

When low water stymied this effort, Gen. Scott suspended it, and the Cherokees who had not yet been transported were put into eleven internment camps. There they remained through the summer of 1838, suffering about 350 deaths through illness. Scott granted a petition for delay until cooler weather, and Cherokee Principal Chief John Ross, accepting defeat, arranged for the remainder of the removal to be supervised by the Cherokee Council. The remaining 11,000 Cherokees were removed under the supervision of Chief Ross in 12 wagon trains, each with about 1,000 persons, with expenses paid by the Army.

How many died along the “trail of tears”? The short answer is, nobody knows. The highest estimate is 6,000; the lowest, 2,000. The intermediate figure of 4,000 is the most often cited, as being the difference between the 16,000 Cherokees enumerated in the 1835 census (omitting 2,000 slaves), and 12,000 counted in the emigration. But Cherokees who lived on private, individually owned lands (rather than communally owned tribal land) were not subject to removal. Some 1,500 Cherokees remained in North Carolina, and many more in South Carolina and Georgia. And it is guessed that perhaps another thousand evaded the soldiers.

As so often in the history of white-Indian relations, it came down to might makes right. As usual, a fig-leaf of legality was employed to cover naked theft. As usual, a relative few enriched themselves by using the government for their own purposes. And, as usual, the events really happened, but not quite in the way they are remembered.

TGU on waking and sleeping and waking again

Sunday, August 5, 2018

9 a.m. Something that had fallen asleep awakened again, a minute or two ago, on reading in Paul Brunton’s chapter “Karnak Days.” [A Search in Secret Egypt.] Just as – Ouspensky? somebody – described, I experienced a something [within me] waking up. Curious feeling. I wonder when it fell asleep? I’m sure what we read has to do with whether we sleep or waken, but I don’t know which is cause and which is effect.

Is it possible that I sometimes talk to the guys while myself inwardly asleep? If not, have I really been awake all those months in which we talked nearly every day?

You overlook the possibility that this inner awakening may be more state-specific than chronology-driven. Thus perhaps you waken when you communicate, and sleep during at least some of the time when you do not.

Which is chicken and which is egg, if that be so?

Ritual is of course designed to awaken those who partake in it. Religious rites are established specifically to assure that only so much time, and no more, will elapse before a given individual will be reminded, and hopefully awakened. But of course in time everything decays and becomes not tocsin but lullaby. The very act of fulfilling the rite ceases to awaken, and instead lulls further to sleep, because performed only as external habit.

Is this why – as Jung said – the gods never reinhabit the temples they desert? That renewal can come only by moving away from the familiar into new ground?

Well, you don’t go to Mass, do you? And yet you are not an anti-religious zealot. That is, you see the legitimate function of religion and religions, but you cannot derive from exoteric ritual what you need. In that sense, by the way, you are the temple the gods deserted (for you did not desert them, and would love to hold communion with them if they lived here still).

“You” meaning not only me, but us in general, I take it.

Those whom the shoe fits, let them wear it. Those who do not know, let them try it for size.

That’s a different “feel” than I can remember interacting with before.

To stick to the point: A community of people with common intent and a shared ritual (assuring periodic reminders) may have a better chance of remaining awake, or rather continually reawakening without too much lost time. Those of you attempting this on your own must, of necessity, rely upon close unbroken communication with the only part of yourselves not subject to 3D fluctuation, and that is, of course, your inner guidance, your non-3D component, your angels or saints or however you conceptualize your connection with the larger world of which the physical is only a part. What else do you have?

I keep thinking a new age is coming in which science, art, and religion will again be one thing, but of course I know that even if it does come, it will be long beyond our own time.

And – perhaps it has not occurred to you – you would not fit well into it, perhaps. Daniel Boone would have made a poor apartment dweller. Fishermen might not enjoy life inland. No need for further analogies; the point should be clear. You were made to be what you are. Why fight it?

Thinking about what you said here, I guess it was a good instinct that led me to begin keeping a journal all those years ago – 52, next month – even though I was not awake and wouldn’t be awake for many a long year.

Your non-3D never sleeps; it knows what you need; it knows the limits of what you can accept; it knows the most promising avenues for advancement. (It does what it can, and it is up to you to cooperate when you know and to listen when you don’t. Nobody can or would want to compel you to cooperate, or even to listen, but it is in your best interest regardless.) To keep a journal was a step toward remaining conscious, and in due time it provided a continuing venue for communication once begun. But if you had resisted keeping a journal, no doubt other opportunities would have arisen.

I know, “We’re always on Plan B.”

Well – we are. And nothing wrong with it, it’s just the way things are.


America’s Long Journey: Jackson and the Bank

When we have worked our way back to the earliest days of the new republic, we will find George Washington’s cabinet of only four men bitterly divided between the views of Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton. The two had very different visions of America’s future: Jefferson’s, a predominantly agricultural America, with few great cities; Hamilton’s, an urban America centered on vibrant commerce and industry.

We know which vision prevailed, and perhaps this lends a sense of inevitability to the outcome of the argument. But in Jackson’s day, the two forces were still contending, and it was Old Hickory who dealt the Hamiltonian vision one of its few setbacks. He did it in the year of his re-election campaign, and did it regardless of political consequences, and did it in characteristically forthright, uncompromising fashion. The electorate, as usual when they witness that kind of determination, approved. Jackson won re-election with 55% of the votes in a four-man race, and 219 electoral votes to Henry Clay’s 49), and perhaps he owed that victory partly to the Second Bank of the United States.

”The Bank,” as it was called, was a private corporation centered in Philadelphia (but with 25 branch offices elsewhere) that handled fiscal transactions for the federal government. The second such federally authorized Hamiltonian bank, it was given a 20-year charter in February, 1816, at the end of James Madison’s second term. The bank issued credit to government and private concerns, served as a depository of government revenues, and was supposed to maintain a sound and stable national currency. Theoretically accountable to Congress and the US Treasury, which held 20% of its shares, in fact the bank management was accountable to no one. The federal investment was far outvoted by the other 80%, which was owned by a few hundred wealthy Americans and a thousand European investors.

Although the Bank of the United States was a depository for federal funds and paid national debts, it answered only to its directors and stockholders and not to the electorate.

In January 1832, the Bank’s charter had four years to run, but banker Nicholas Biddle and his Congressional supporters thought they’d put one over on Jackson. Knowing that the existing Congress would vote to recharter the bank, they calculated that Jackson would not dare veto the bill for fear of jeopardizing his re-election. Daniel Webster and Henry Clay introduced the Bank Recharter Bill and got it through both houses.

Imagine counting on putting one over on Jackson! Imagine expecting Jackson to flinch from a confrontation! On July 10, 1832, Jackson vetoed the bill and sent it back to the Hill with a stinging message spelling out the reasons the institution deserved to die, labeling the Bank elitist and anti-republican, arguing that the Bank was unconstitutional and that it was neither necessary nor proper for the federal government to authorize and permit the existence of a big and powerful institution that directly benefited only a privileged few. (Where is Jackson today, when we need him?)

The following September, he issued an executive order ending the deposit of federal funds into the Bank, instead placing them in selected state banks. Biddle retaliated by tightening the money supply, causing an economic contraction. The financial crisis was initially blamed on Jackson, but by 1834, Biddle’s tactics had backfired, as the people concluded that the Bank was every bit as powerful and dangerous as Jackson had been saying right along. People had blamed the Bank for the Panic of 1819, and here it was doing the same thing again. The panic was short-lived, the cause of recharter was abandoned, and, in February, 1836, Biddle turned the Bank into a private Pennsylvania corporation. Only three years later, its insolvency caused it to suspend payments. It was liquidated in 1841, and the bank’s critics felt vindicated by events.

The Bank was dead. That doesn’t mean that everyone lived happily ever after. At first, yes. Money withdrawn from the Bank went to state and local banks, all of whom were ready and willing to lend to investors. As we saw in the section on the Panic of 1837, which was soon to follow, easy money led to speculation and over-investment as usual – in land, canals, cotton, factories. While credit kept expanding, everybody was smiling. But in 1836, Jackson issued the Specie Circular, requiring buyers of government lands to pay in specie, and that sobered up the party in a hurry.

We don’t much use the word “specie” any more. It means hard money — silver or gold coins – as opposed to soft money, basically paper. Today, the overwhelming majority of money isn’t even paper, but is digital, a computerized accounting that may or may not have anything tangible backing it. And what digital money is to us, paper money was to the nineteenth century. Many people didn’t trust paper money, for the simple reason that it wasn’t trust-worthy. Paper money is a promise to pay; specie, by contrast, is itself valuable. If you have a ten-dollar bill, you have a promise that what you hold is redeemable for ten dollars’ worth of value. If you have a ten-dollar coin, you hold (assuming honest coinage) ten dollars’ worth of gold or silver.

State and local banks were issuing painless paper dollars with abandon, and people were using this paper money to buy government land, particularly in the West and South, where most of the available land was.) By issuing the Specie Circular, Jackson said, in effect, “Sorry, boys, to buy government land you’re going to need real money, not paper money.” The natural (but apparently unforeseen) result was a great demand for specie in exchange for paper notes. Many banks didn’t have enough specie to cover their paper, and these banks collapsed, which led directly to the Panic of 1837.

Does that mean Jackson was wrong to issue the circular? Wrong to kill the Second Bank of the United States? Or were other factors more to blame for the financial chaos that followed? Really, no one knows. As to what would have happened on the road not taken – no one can say. Economists still argue the question up one side and down the other.

The danger on the one side is wild, runaway inflation, that destroys the value of money as a store of value, and the danger on the other side is a grinding, intensifying economic contraction, crippling society’s ability to produce and distribute goods and services. We’ve experienced each, at one time or another. About the only thing we can say for sure is that if there is any financial arrangement that guarantees perpetual prosperity in reality (as opposed to in theory), the economists don’t seem to have discovered it.

Dreams as first-tier experience

[Recently I decided to re-read past journals, starting from the most recent and working backward, in an on-going attempt to recapture things I may tend to forget. I haven’t gotten very far, but already, an interesting development.]

Saturday, August 4, 2018

3:20 a.m. Tired of lying in bed, not needing more sleep at the moment. But what to do? Watched a tedious Netflix movie last night and resented the time it took, though God knows I wasn’t doing anything constructive with it.

Am I getting depressed? I realize I have no idea what is going on around me politically or socially, and have no way to find out. Despair at long distance.

For the longest time, I have relied upon these conversations for a sense of purpose and of achievement. Absent them, nothing. That isn’t good.

An old pattern, an old problem. Doing as a way to validate being.

— Re-reading journal 114, I come to that dream of July 19 that had me so exultant, so exalted – only to bring me crushingly (the word I used) to earth when I realized I had been dreaming.

But – had you?

Well, that was the question, yes. Had I? Or was it a higher perception interpreted into a dream? It sure was a disappointment to realize that I was here, in 3D, rather than the dream’s reality being the reality I was in. Can I – should I – take it as encouragement that sort of backfired?

Instead of looking for the cause, look to the reality. You were so happy! You were free of so many hampering circumstances. Only, when you awoke, you tried to make 3D sense of it all, and of course could not, because symbolic reality does not translate into prosaic reality.

I lost something just then, a glimpse I got while still writing out your words.

Yes, just concentrate on it. “Symbolic” is the word, because it reminded you of John Anthony West writing on Symbolist Egypt.

Yes, it did, but that isn’t quite what I glimpsed and lost. It was a way to explain the relation—

Oh yes. First-tier, second-tier, third-tier experience.

That’s right. A dream may be considered to be a first-tier experience just as much as any 3D physical experience. And like any first-tier experience, it may have second-tier effects. That is, first there is what happens, but that is always of the moment and so – from the point of view of the ever-moving present moment – ephemeral. The effect that the first-tier event has, its second-tier effect upon your psyche, will always be what is important. A blow to the head may hurt; its second-tier effects (and we don’t mean any continuing physical trauma) will determine if it is important to you or not.

If I understand it rightly, this is (or may be) what Dion Fortune meant, in saying that modern phycology had gotten an idea of this reality, but was holding it from the wrong end of the stick. Psychology reads dreams as expressions of the psychic reality of an individual – as is undoubtedly true – but does not seem to suspect that the dream may be truer in a way than the 3D reality it illustrates.

No, slow down a little. Try again. You aren’t on the wrong track, but it needs more careful stating, and better for you to do it – and thus lock it into your understanding –than to be merely given it.

Well, this dream reassured me that my reality really exists, that I am not stuck here as it sometimes seems, that what I know can be experienced.

[The dream, as recorded Thursday, July 19, 2018, at 2:20 a.m.

[I was so exultant! But then –

[I slipped out of a church service; it was evening, I guess. I was aware of people watching me, or anyway they might be watching me, but I didn’t care. I set off for home. I was barefoot but that didn’t seem odd. I began walking, only I was slip-skipping, traveling a little above the trail, which led through the woods. I was so exultant: I was flying, and this time there could be no doubt about it. All the way home to what was Rita’s house, and I walked the last little way, up a small hill, carrying something in front of me (a chair?) that I had been carrying the whole time. When I entered the house, Matt and Sarah and the kids {i.e. my daughter and her family} were there, it was Christmas night and a couple of presents were still unopened.

[But then I realized that I was in the recliner on the first floor, in p.j.s and a robe.

[So crushingly disappointing. Yet still I suspect that it means something.]

But then one wakes up, and must decide, what does the dream mean? Is it only wish-fulfillment? Does it symbolize important non-3D realities? So I suppose it is a pioneering instinct. It is a reassurance from the future, and/or from a wider part of the present moment.

It is a first-tier fact, rather than, as it may appear to be, a reaction to 3D mental and/or physical events.

“Rather than”? Couldn’t it sometimes be, “in addition to”?

Perhaps. But the important point here is that a dream has its own reality and is not merely a symbol of something, just as an idea has its own reality and is not something you made up.

So when we react to our dreams –

You remember “When you wish upon a star.”

I do every so often. That was a magical event for me, for no particular 3D reason I ever saw.

It came because you would need it. Tell the story.

I was a boy, watching a Walt Disney TV show. I don’t remember what the show was about, but at the end, with little apparent connection, a man’s voice sang these magic words –

When you wish upon a star,

Makes no difference who you are.

When you wish upon a star

Your dreams come true.

When you wish upon a star,

Makes no difference who you are.

Anything your heart desires

Will come to you.

When you wish upon a star,

Makes no difference who you are,

When you wish upon a star

Your dreams – come – true.

It almost brings me to tears, so many years later, because I vividly remember how that song penetrated my core. I can’t remember if I felt exalted or reassured or what, but something in me clung to that message of desperately needed encouragement.

Disney as dream, you see. He organized and institutionalized a dream factory for just that reason. That was his function, to encourage, to cast out lifelines in a desperate time.

Well, God bless him. It certainly worked for me. And it reminds me of my friend Robert Clarke, saying how much cheerful optimistic American films helped in the depths of the English hard times of the 1930s and 1940s. This puts that in a different light.

So there is your “doing” for the morning.

Well, it helps, always. Thanks.


Drunk history

They have a point. It always astonishes me, saddens me, too, when people say history is dull, is nothing but lists of dates, etc., etc. Not so. History is STORIES. Once experience the endless fascination of it, you’re hooked for life. But, it’s all in how they’re told.

Via the History News Network sponsored by my alma mater, the history department of The George Washington University.