MIDlifestyle blog. I'm the mom of Professor Angel Boy and grandma to Angel Boy 2.0 and Angel Girl 2.0. I love to camp and hike. I've been in a few films, co-produced a surf-related radio show, co-owned a couple small businesses, and co-directed a non-profit organization. I love seashells and rocks, gardening and baking, Hello Kitty, Chanel, and anything sparkly. I've been a veg since 1970 and an ardent animal activist forever. Fashionista...veganista...animal activista...If you don't find me crying myself to sleep, I'm off on a mission to find the perfect shoe! And...I met His Holiness The Dalai Lama, so def read that post!
Even in SoCal, on this Autumnal Equinox, leaves do fall.
Fall, Leaves, Fall
Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away; Lengthen night and shorten day; Every leaf speaks bliss to me Fluttering from the autumn tree. I shall smile when wreaths of snow Blossom where the rose should grow; I shall sing when night’s decay Ushers in a drearier day.
I originally posted this in 2017 but it seems relevant now more than ever, especially in the aftermath of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s untimely death and what that means to the Supreme Court and our messed up country, so I freshened it up a bit for 2020. When I first posted this, I also posted on another site and received some angry comments so I guess it touched a few nerves, fired up some triggers; oh well. Don’t shoot the messenger.
I had never heard the word– Wetiko— until a couple years ago and now it’s cropping up everywhere since it’s on my radar.
From my Google search:
The term Wetiko is a Cree term (windigo in Ojibway, wintiko in Powhatan) which, to quote Forbes, refers to “an evil person or spirit who terrorizes other creatures by means of terrible evil acts.”[ii] Wetikos are the human instruments for the transpersonal ‘spirit of evil’ to terrorize the world.
There seems to be a collective query rising up from the huddled masses of humanity who search for answers to everything from Trump to climate change, deadly natural disasters to senseless murders, and a pervasive lack of empathy and compassion.
Is there an epidemic of broken, undeveloped frontal lobes, of dysfunctional, maladjusted, deteriorating, and infected amygdalas?
Narcissism and Cluster B psychopathy run rampant in our culture, feeding on those who still have that innate ability to feel empathy and compassion, who possess a real soul and a kind spirit.
Those dark and toxic parasitic Wetiko entities are cannibalistic, predatory, soul-LESS, selfish, and hostile: a cancer of the soul; a shapeshifter.
“Just as viruses or malware infect a computer and program it to self-destruct, Wetiko programs the human biocomputer to think and behave in self-destructive ways.
Covertly operating through the unconscious blind spots in the human psyche, Wetiko renders people oblivious to their own madness, compelling them to act against their own best interests.
People under its thrall can, like someone in the throes of an addiction or in a state of trauma, unwittingly create the very problem they are trying to resolve, clinging desperately to the thing that is torturing and destroying them.
People taken over by Wetiko are suffering from an autoimmune disease of the psyche. In autoimmune deficiency syndrome, the immune system of the organism perversely attacks the very life it is trying to protect. In trying to live, it destroys life, ultimately destroying even itself. In the same way, once Wetiko has insinuated itself into a living entity, it acts like a perverted antibody, treating the wholesome parts of the system as cancerous tumors to be exterminated.
This problem is being collectively acted out on the world stage. Humans are destroying the biosphere of the planet upon which we all depend for our survival.
Wetiko is at the bottom of the seemingly never-ending destruction we are wreaking on this biosphere. One example is the destruction of the Amazonian rainforest, the lungs of the planet. Another example is the terminator seeds that are genetically engineered not to reproduce a second generation, forcing farmers to buy new seeds and making life impossible for many poor farmers. If the planet were seen as an organism, and people seen as cells in this organism, it would be as if these cells had become cancerous or parasitic and had turned on the healthy cells, destroying the very organism of which they themselves were a part.
Our species appears to be enacting a mass ritual suicide on a global scale. Paul Levy “Dispelling Wetiko: Breaking the Curse of Evil” Quest 102.4 (Fall 2014): pg. 146-151.
Also from Paul Levy…Wetiko disease is an expression of the convincing illusion of the separate self gone wild. Bewitched by the intrinsic projective tendencies of their own mind, full-blown Wetikos are unconsciously doing the very thing they are reacting to while simultaneously accusing other people of doing it.
Projecting the shadow onto others, they will accuse others of projecting the shadow onto them. To use an extreme, but prototypical example, it is like someone screaming that you’re killing them as they kill you.
If their insanity is reflected back to them, they think it is the mirror that is insane. Suffering from a form of psychic blindness that believes itself to be sightedness, full-blown Wetikos project out their own unconscious blindness and imagine that others, instead of themselves, are the ones who are not seeing.
Governed by the insane, self-perpetuating logic of fear and paranoia, those taken over by the disease fear that if they don’t attack and rule over others, they are in danger of being attacked and ruled over themselves.
In their convoluted, upside-down, flawless illogic, Wetikos’ act to their own projections in the world as if they objectively exist and are other than themselves, thinking that they themselves have nothing to do with creating that to which they are reacting.
In Wetiko disease, the psyche takes the ‘terror’ that haunts it from within, and in its attempt to master it, unwittingly becomes taken over by it, thus becoming an instrument of terror in the world.
We have then become the thing we most feared, ‘creatures of the European nightmare world,’ as we psychologically terrorize ourselves, as well as terrorizing the world at large.
Because full-blown Wetikos are soul murderers who continually recreate the ongoing process of killing their own soul, they are reflexively compelled to do this to others; for what the soul does to itself, it can’t help but do to others.
In a perverse inversion of the golden rule, instead of treating others how they would like to be treated, Wetikos do unto others what was done unto them. The Wetiko is simply a living link in a timeless, vampiric lineage of abuse.
Full-blown Wetikos induce and dream up others to experience what it is like to be the part of themselves which they have split off from and denied, and are thus not able to consciously experience – the part of themselves that has been abused and vampirized. In playing this out, Wetikos are transmitting and transferring their own depraved state of inner deadness to others in a perverse form of trying to deal with their own suffering.
Paradoxically, Wetikos both try to destroy others’ light, as it reminds them of what they’ve killed in themselves, while simultaneously trying to appropriate the light for themselves.
The disease itself is now demanding that we pay attention to it, or it will kill us.”
“An eye for an eye only makes the whole world blind”. – Ghandi
Native American author and philosopher Jack Forbes further adds:
“This disease, this Wetiko (cannibal) psychosis, is the greatest epidemic sickness known to man.” We, as a species, are in the midst of a massive psychic epidemic, a virulent collective psychosis that has been brewing in the cauldron of humanity’s psyche from the beginning of time.
Like a fractal, Wetiko operates on multiple dimensions simultaneously — intra-personally (within individuals), inter-personally (between ourselves), as well as collectively (as a species). “Cannibalism,” in Forbes’s words, “is the consuming of another’s life for one’s own private purpose or profit.”
I don’t read much science fiction…I’m a chicklit girl, but my research about Wetiko led me to this article about the (deceased) sci-fi author, Phillip K. Dick (you might know him as the author of Bladerunner.)
This isn’t the post I had planned for Saturday but we have all heard the devastating news.
On Rosh Hashanah, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Supreme Court Justice, died at the age of 87 from metastatic pancreatic cancer.
I think a lot of us had the same first thoughts; “Oh no, not HER” “Not now.””NOOO!!!”
We surely don’t need her gone, not now, not during this shitshow of a year that 2020 has become.
Hearing that horrible news (tragic for her family but tragic for our country and democracy, too) brought me back to the morning my mom (the original Charlotte) died of the same disease, metastatic pancreatic cancer.
Thanks to medical advancements, RBG was able to live a lot longer after diagnosis than my mom.
Hearing about her death brought up all those same traumatic feelings of loss that I felt when I found my mom had died. She lived with us and we had cared for her during her illness with the help of a great hospice.
I had checked on her at around 5am and she was fine, not in distress, still asleep, so I did a little cleaning and made my son’s breakfast so it’d be ready for him when he woke up ‘cos it was a school day. I don’t know what prompted me to check on her again so soon, but I did. She was still in the same position; she LOOKED like she was asleep, but there was a subtle difference. I had never seen a dead person in my entire 32 years on this earth, but I knew. I knew.
I checked her carotid artery and called the hospice nurse. I woke up Angel Boy (almost 7 years old) and managed to tell him all the right things. Hospice had suggested that I ask him if he’d like to kiss his grandma goodbye, so I did. And he did. That pretty much broke me, but I’m a stoic girl and you wouldn’t know I was broken. I can break on the inside but you won’t see it. Things had to be done so I did what needed to be done. I always do.
I miss my mom. Forever.
But this is about Ruth Bader Ginsberg, a brilliant woman whose entire life was inspirational. Her loss is an epic tragedy.
About RBG’s life, the film “On The Basis of Sex” featured a song written and performed by Kesha. Here’s an acoustic version. It needs to be the anthem of our revolution. First we mourn, then we fight.
Here Comes the Change
One day I’ll be gone The world will keep turning I hope I leave this place Better than I found it Oh it’s hard, I know it’s hard To be the lightning in the dark Hold on tight you’ll be alright You know it’s time Here comes the change We’re comin’ of age This is not a phase Here comes, here comes, the change Is it a crazy thought? That if I had a child I hope they live to see the day That everyone’s equal Oh it’s hard I know it’s hard To be the right inside the wrong Hold on tight we’ll be alright You know it’s time Oh here comes the change Oh we’re comin’ of age This is not a phase Here comes here comes the change Hope there’ll come a time when we We can live in and die free I hope…
Maybe because I loved the fairy garden I sent Angel Boy, or maybe it was the smokey skies that made being outside harmful to my asthma, but I had to find an indoor project or it was going to affect my mental health, too.
I thought to myself, what could I craft without having to buy any new supplies?
Pinterest and the internet offers a plethora of ideas by amazing people.
There are step-by-step videos for nearly EVERYTHING DIY.
My first attempt was a craft stick (popsicle stick) door. I have a package of 200 sticks that I was saving for projects with AB and I always have glue and paint. PERFECT.
The door was so aDORable with addition of the button for a doorknob that I painted gold, so I felt confident building the bench. Also easy and also way cool. I painted it white and added a touch of my own…miniature pillows, each stuffed with 1/2 a cotton ball.
The little tables were made out of pieces of broken costume jewelry glued to a wine cork. (Yes, I do save everything.)
Check out the little broom I made with a toothpick.
I’m also obsessed with windchimes and mobiles (another post) and came up with the brilliant idea of a mini-mobile made out of an old costume jewelry ring. I have no idea where the ring came from, but it was there in the box of broken things.
I attached tiny seashells and gems using silver jewelry wire and fishing line.
Not perfect, but not bad for a first attempt, right? Next, I’m going to try to build the picnic table.
I didn’t really want to do a step-by-step DIY tutorial because mine wouldn’t be nearly as detailed and precise as the ones that are already out there, but here’s a few photos of the process:
I think I might attempt to pierce the veil between worlds and open that door. It was especially magical last night when the solar lights came on and sparkled the glass rock pathway.
Just a hungry scrub jay hanging out on the deck. They LOVE raw peanuts. I still find a few empty shells hidden in the garden nine years later..
One of my favorite photos from September 2011.
First there was one, then another, and for a while, there were about four jays who hung out and let me hand feed them.
Did you know that scrub jays are very intelligent?
From Wiki: Recent research has suggested that western scrub jays, along with several other corvids, are among the most intelligent of animals. The brain-to-body mass ratio of adult scrub jays rivals that of chimpanzees and cetaceans, and is dwarfed only by that of humans. Scrub jays are also the only non-primate or non-dolphin shown to plan ahead for the future (known as metacognition), which was previously thought of as a uniquely human trait Other studies have shown that they can remember locations of over 200 food caches, as well as the food item in each cache and its rate of decay. To protect their caches from pilfering conspecifics, scrub jays will choose locations out of sight of their competitors, or re-cache caches once they are alone, suggesting that they can take into account the perspective of others. According to new research from the University of California @ Davis, scrub jays also summon others to screech over the body of a dead jay. The birds’ cacophonous “funerals” can last for up to half an hour.
STAY near me–do not take thy flight! A little longer stay in sight! Much converse do I find in thee, Historian of my infancy! Float near me; do not yet depart! – Wordsworth
This female Papilio glaucus, the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, hung around for about half an hour, leisurely fluttering from one flower to another. I almost felt like paparazzi as I snapped photo after photo of this Lepidopteran celebrity. A little research revealed that the first known drawing of a North America butterfly was in 1587 of an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail by John White.
It happened in the front yard this time along the dry river bed.
I was enchanted while she took a rest break on the ground, basically right at my feet, long enough for me to take about fifty more pics.
To a Butterfly
STAY near me–do not take thy flight! A little longer stay in sight! Much converse do I find in thee, Historian of my infancy! Float near me; do not yet depart! Dead times revive in thee: Thou bring’st, gay creature as thou art! A solemn image to my heart, My father’s family! Oh! pleasant, pleasant were the days, The time, when, in our childish plays, My sister Emmeline and I Together chased the butterfly! A very hunter did I rush Upon the prey:–with leaps and springs I followed on from brake to bush; But she, God love her, feared to brush The dust from off its wings.
That story is now; we need to go back in time to a week ago before it’s Grandma to the rescue.
It’s all a bit convoluted, but I’m accurately depicting the chain of events. I hope you can follow along and it’s not too confusing.
Contained in the box of gifts for his half birthday was a little ball from the dollar store that caught my eye because it was soft and squishy and was an actual face of a tiger, not simply a cartoon rendering.
He has lovely eyes and an endearing quality, don’t you agree?
When T FaceTimed me as he was opening the box, Dad set the phone down so I could watch him and we could chat about all the items. As soon as he picked up the ball, he fell instantly in love. He gave it a hug and stroked his cheek with it, which is the sign for mother (although he’s not aware of that).
He immediately said, “Grandma, I love love love this tiger. Do you know what I’m going to name him? I’m going to name him Tiger.”
I said, “It makes me happy that you love him, I thought you might, and Tiger is a perfect name!”
He gave Tiger another hug.
I said, “Hey T, how about whenever you hug Tiger, that will be exactly like a hug from me. It’s Grandma hugging you all the time. What do you think about that?”
“Every single time you hug Tiger, it’s ME hugging you back.”
And then he started kissing it. So yes, my heart overflowed again and broke at the same time because it’s still not safe to travel to give him real Grandma hugs.
Later on, Mom texted me that Tiger had become his new “favorite” and he wouldn’t go anywhere without him and slept next to him on the pillow.
So the backstory is simple. T really really bonded with Tiger and he was the object representation of my unconditional LOVE.
Now you’re all caught up, right?
Yesterday in the late afternoon, my phone rang and this is how FaceTime started.
No “Hello”, just “Grandma, I got to tell you. It’s bad, real bad. Something bad happened.”
“Hello, my T.”
“Oh yeah, hello Grandma, you aren’t gonna like this.”
Now if you’re wondering why I was so calm (which I was) it’s because I know beyond any shadow of any doubt that if something really catastrophic had occurred, I would have heard about it from mom or dad, and they wouldn’t have allowed a four-year-old to become the messenger of something terrible that had befallen one of them.
Anyway, my Grandma-spidey-sense kicked in and I could pretty much figure out what constituted a crisis in his lovely little life.
“What happened, tell me!”
“OK. Listen. but I have to show you. You aren’t gonna like it. I’m gonna flip.”
When he flips the camera to show me what’s in his hand, my crystal ball vision was confirmed.
There was damage to the tiger ball. One ear had been slightly chewed off.
“Oh my. Poor Tiger. How did that happen?”
“Well, Grandma, Charlotte used those two little teeth of hers to tear off his ear. Can you believe it?”
“I hope she didn’t eat it, did she?”
“No. I was being kind and shared it with her for just a minute and she damaged him.”
“T, that is pretty sad for Tiger, I agree. I understand you are sad about it. How about if you put it up on a high shelf so that Char can’t get to it and I’ll fix him the next time I’m there. You know how good I am at fixing things, right?”
“OK Grandma, I will. I know exactly where to put him.”
“Now let me see your beautiful face for a minute.”
“There we go. That’s good.”
“I’m going to flip MY camera because I want to show you a surprise I have for you.”
I walked into his bedroom.
“Look, T. What do you see?”
“Yes, way. As soon as I saw how much you loved Tiger, I went back to the store and got another tiger, just in case something happened to him. And the balls were all so cute, I got a kitty cat and a sloth, too. See?”
“DADDY YOU HAVE TO COME HERE AND SEE WHAT GRANDMA HAS.YOU WON’T BELIEVE IT. HURRY AND SEE!!”
“A sloth? Show me again. Grandma, you know how much I love sloths, don’t you?”
(Says Daddy, “Good call, Grandma. He was really upset.”)
“T, I’m going to mail them to you first thing in the morning and you should have them by Saturday. That’s three days from now.”
“Grandma, can you go to the post office NOW and mail them to me?”
“It’s a bit late in the day, so it will have to be in the morning, but I promise I’ll do it first thing, OK?”
“DAD, GRANDMA’S GOING TO MAIL THEM TO ME FIRST THING IN THE MORNING.”
“Now we have that problem solved, don’t we? That will make everything better, don’t you think? Maybe it will be a good idea not to let Char get too close to the balls so that she doesn’t chew on them, right? She’s still such a little one and is learning what can and can’t go in her mouth. We need to be very careful with her.”
Apparently we were done with that subject and his fears were sufficiently allayed because he entered the Twilight Zone with his next topic…
“Grandma? I’m going to pick you up from the airport tomorrow. It might take me a week to get there, but I’m going to be there and the first thing you’ll say is, ‘There’s my Theo!!””
“Whoa, um, T, I’m not actually going to get on an airplane tomorrow, you know that, don’t you?”
“It’s going to take me a long time to get there, probably a week, but I’ll be there.”
“I hope I can see you really soon, Angel Boy, and then I will give you the BIGGEST HUG ever.”
“OK, Grandma, Bye.”
And that was it.
Whew, good thing I’m Grandma to the rescue. Crisis averted.
If only all disasters were so easily solved, right?