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Chapter #158: Happy New Decade - 2011 - January 6, 2011


1950's Civil Defense Fallout Shelter Sign - Click for larger image (http://jamesmcgillis.com)

Fasten your seatbelts.

It's going to be a bumpy night.

As I look back on the first decade of the twenty-first century, I realize that it had no generally accepted name. From the Gay 90’s to the Roaring 20’s and then on to the Fabulous 50’s, we know that special decades receive special names. Perhaps the ultimate alchemical reduction was when we named the 1960s simply “the 60’s”.
 
I favor calling our recently lost “double-zero” decade. After all, we seem to be right back where we started on Millennium night 2000. The gloss and veneer might look better in high definition, but the underlying energies feel largely unchanged. Many pundits say that opposing energies are stronger than ever, thus leading us toward “energetic gridlock”. One needs to look no further than our formerly revered U.S. Senate for a prime example of gridlock thinking.
 
Appearances can be deceiving. Inside, we know that a profound shift in human energies occurred during the double-zero decade. It was a shift far larger than the global energy shift exemplified by the earthquake and tsunami of December 2005. Although the date is still unknown to most humans, on October 17, 2007 we all experienced a quantum leap in energy. Throughout the first two thirds of the decade, human energies dithered within a small range of the status quo. On 10/17/07, humanity began its inexorable movement toward a worldwide spiritual awakening. New Energy powers the new Now and thus the momentum of the unfolding shall continue of its own accord.
1950's Civil Defense Poster - Click for larger image (http://jamesmcgillis.com) 
What, if anything, should we fear? We should fear nothing, as fear is not a natural part of our lives. When I think “back” to 1984, 2000-2001 and “forward” to 2012, I smile at the superstitions surrounding each of those dates.
 
In 1984, according to George Orwell’s predictive book by the same name, we faced the prospect of a nameless state taking over human destiny, disseminating false truths and thus controlling the populace. Did it happen? Some would say, “Yes”, that the world is controlled by a cabal of unseen, powerful men. Although that may have once been true, the world is now too complex and diverse a place for any group to dominate and control. I believe that no 1984-style person or group controls human destiny. Whether we like it or not, we are all in this together.
 
As we approached 2000-2001, collectively known as the “Millennium Year”, the Year Two-Thousand computer bug, known as Y2K was widely discussed in the media. Survivalists predicted an “end of the world” scenario and holed up in their bunkers. I wonder if all of that dehydrated food tasted good after the world did not end.
 
For those who do not know it, the ubiquitous term “computer bug” has literal meaning. In the era of vacuum tube computers, electromechanical relays controlled the logic gates. Patterned after midcentury telephone relays, the rapid-fire closing of any particular gate might crush an insect resting there, which then acted as an insulator. Loss of only one relay could crash the computer. Until operators could locate and remove the “bug”, the computer was useless. Thus, the pejorative term, “computer bug” entered our lexicon.
Warning sign affixed to the nuclear waste train, near Moab, Utah - Click for alternate image (http://jamesmcgillis.com) 
Since the Quantum Leap in October 2007, time no longer holds us as tightly to its old linear progression. Now we can look forward to 2012 as if it were already in our past. If nothing else, recent history has shown that world-ending events are not preordained. However, according to some, they are. In recent years, a cult has developed around the “ending” of the ancient Mayan calendar. When this occurs in December 2012, what form of logic dictates that the finite end of a calendar system also predicts the “end of the world”?
 
Perhaps it is time to start a new calendar, based on the ancient wisdom that created the original. I believe that the Maya truncated their calendar as a wake-up call to us. We are here in their future, ready to experience a new beginning. The message from the ancients to us is, “Wake up and live”.
 
When compared to the three tumultuous years mentioned above, 2011 appears benign. As an odd numbered year, 2011 seems less substantial or serious than 2010 or 2012. Luckily, the only predictions that the world will end in 2011 revolve around the recent unexplained deaths of a few thousand birds in Arkansas and Missouri.
Scene from "Thelma & Louise" (http://jamesmcgillis.com 
In November 2011, we shall pass the date 11/11/11. In 1918, World War I ended on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. Not ironically, more ordnance exploded in that final hour than in any other hour of the Great War. For those who died during the last minute shelling and small arms fire in 1918, we can all agree that they “went out with a bang”. At the end of World War II, utilizing nuclear fission, we witnessed a quantum leap in violence and destruction. Our misplaced attempts to rationalize the unthinkable led us to using explosives as entertainment.
 
In September 2011, we shall observe 9/11/11, which marks ten years since the shocking attacks on American military and financial institutions. In the time since those acts of violence, what have we learned?
 
While watching a contemporary Hollywood action movie, one finds corporate owned media pushing unhealthy and violent energies upon us. Most people say, “That's OK. The violence is not real, and by the way, it looks even better in 3-D”. From the ever-present pistol in the hero’s hand, to the outlandish and fiery explosions, traditional media keeps pushing our “fear-button”, all in the name of entertainment.
 
The more high-definition, surround-sound graphical violence that we feed to our individual and collective unconscious, the more we shall attract violence into our “real lives”. As long as we, both as individuals and as a culture, are addicted to violence, we shall continue to attract violence into our daily lives.
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