Gaudete Sunday - the third Sunday of Advent. In addition to marking the midpoint of the season, the day signifies the joy the world experienced at the nearness of the Lord's coming. Above all else, it is a day for rejoicing. It is no accident that the candle symbolizing this Advent Sunday differs from the others in color. All four Sundays are important, but this one is especially significant. It is meant to stand out from the others. It is meant to be uncommon.
When I contemplate the birth of Jesus, I am inevitably struck by the uncommon Goodness of the event - in both the "singular" and "wonderful" senses of the word. On the surface the birth itself was common. Jesus came into the world in the same way countless other infants before Him had. Yet Jesus's appearance in the world signaled the beginning of an incomparable cosmic shift - an unparalleled movement in the minds and hearts of men. Gaudete Sunday is a joyful celebration of this cosmic shift -this unparalleled movement.
The arrival of Jesus on earth proclaims the potential for an authentic common Good via uncommon means that at once embrace and transcend all conventional notions of the common good. The Good that Jesus brought into the world was uncommon in every sense of the word. It was at once unconventional, uncustomary, unheard of, unorthodox as well as strange, startling, singular, and special.
It is Gaudete Sunday, the midpoint of the Advent season, and while the world remains fixated and possessed by deceitful and, ultimately, destructive impulses toward the establishment of a "common good", we the faithful should instead rejoice in the Good that is uncommon - the uncommon Good of the coming of Jesus, but also in the presence of this uncommon Good within ourselves and our surroundings, whenever and wherever we are fortunate enough to perceive it.
Substantial snowfalls are rare in northwestern Hungary, which is why I welcomed the twenty or so centimetres of the white stuff that blanketed this region on Thursday.
Most adults I know hate snow. Children, on the other hand, can't seem to get enough of it. Me? Well, I've always found snowy landscapes to be enchanting - I still do today.
Many people are beginning to wake up to the fact that the world has gone terribly wrong, but very few appear to comprehend the true nature of what we are experiencing in this time and place.
Most continue to chalk up the unprecedented evil all around us to greed, power-lust, corruption, or insanity. They blame current circumstances on overreaching bureaucrats, deceitful politicians, degraded democracies, and villainous organizations. Others lay the blame squarely on the mindless complacency of the general public.
These observations are not wrong. At the same time, not one qualifies as being even half right.
What we are experiencing today extends far beyond secular, material conceptualizations of psychological maliciousness or madness. What we are experiencing today is unrestricted, undisguised, and unrelenting preternatural evil.
This preternatural evil includes the overreaching bureaucrats, deceitful politicians, degraded democracies, and villainous organization; but at the all encompassing scale of metaphysics, these highly visible antagonists are but the tip of the iceberg, held above the surface by mostly hidden but very real supernatural forces that are directly opposed to God and Creation.
Concerning the mindless masses - yes, they are certainly to blame; but the faults in their minds are symptoms of the fatal fault in their souls.
What we are experiencing today is the spiritual catastrophe of an emboldened, malevolent supernatural consciousness laying waste to a mostly oblivious and defenseless despiritualized human consciousness.
Until this is acknowledged, no amount of waking up to evil will lead to anything truly Good. This does not imply that the acknowledgment of preternatural evil alone will be enough to stop the short-term cascade of events in this world, but it will have to mark a starting point.
As a starting point, the acknowledgement of supernatural evil allows people to see the thing for what it is. Consequently, it provides them with opportunities to remedy the fault in their souls and to approach possibilities for right thinking and action, all of which undoubtedly influence the broader scope of the still largely unacknowledged spiritual war.
Something worth contemplating in this time of manipulation and coercion . . .
One, who has power over me, has to establish an inner contact with my soul and spiritually act upon me, evoking from my depths a spiritual and free admitting of his power as not foreign to me.
That which remains foreign to me, can with violence coerce me, but it does not have power over me.
A power of governance, having lost contact with the souls, the spiritual community, is no longer a power of governance, it is already powerless.
Whosoever rules only the bodies and shifts around the atoms of matter, does not possess a true power of rule, his power of rule is illusory. Coercive violence is illusory a method.
Power by its essence is deeply contrary to coercive force. Coercive force is always powerless or in any case an indicator of insufficiency of power. Coercive force is a sign, that a given energy does not act sufficiently deep enough, skips a beat, does not penetrate at depth, does not inwardly act, does not set afire or take hold. An oppressive mechanical shoving in human life is of powerlessness, an incapacity.
An authentic power and might sets free, grants freedom to all and everyone, it is a transition into the world of Divine energy, its taking root into the very core of things. Powerlessness always enslaves, is violence prone, and bestows beatings. Authentic power evokes a respect for itself, meets with acknowledgement, and in its supreme manifestations -- is a delight.
Whosoever possesses true power is one who rules over human souls or the soul of the entire people, and is never sensed as an oppressor.
An oppressor however rules nothing.
In every state there is coercion and force, but no state can rest entirely upon coercion and force.
A state tends to fall apart and collapse when the power of rule in it is violent force, and not true power.
- Nikolai Berdyaev - from the essay, Power and Coercive Violence
Everyone is familiar with the phrase "to draw a line in the sand", which is figuratively meant to denote a boundary one will not a cross; a point at which further compromise becomes unacceptable and unthinkable; the limit of what one will do, tolerate, or accept.
Besides being familiar with the expression, I imagine everyone has employed it at some point in his or her life - perhaps as an ultimatum against an overbearing boss; maybe to communicate one's dissatisfaction with the unscrupulous behavior of a friend or loved one; or to state the extent one was willing to go in the pursuit of a questionable undertaking.
Line in the sand. A common phrase - perhaps even a universal phrase. Moreover an inherently powerful phrase if declared sincerely. So, why haven't we seen this common, universal, powerful phrase materialize with greater force among a greater number of people in this time and place?
Would it be fair to say that the common man has not reached his limit of what he considers tolerable? Does it indicate that the common man has plenty of water left in his seemingly bottomless well of compromise? Has the common man categorized everything he has been forced to endure since 2020 as acceptable? If that is the case, then the common man has not yet reached that figurative boundary at which he feels motivated to refuse, to resist, to reject.
This raises a question: At which point will the common man feel motivated to draw a line in the sand, so to speak?
Will it be when he sees his friends, neighbors, loved ones, and fellow citizens permanently locked in or locked out or rounded up or carted off?
Will it be after he and his children receive their ninth pecks to combat the tenth and eleventh waves?
Will it be when he realizes that he has essentially handed over all of his freedom to a Satanic global technocracy?
Or will it be after he is completely assimilated into the totalitarian beast system from which he will find it impossible to escape?
I don't know. As I argued the other day, the common man seems intent on blandly accepting anything and everything the totalitarians throw at him.
When he is finally ready to draw his line in the sand, he may - to his chagrin - discover that all the sand has disappeared from under his feet. Regardless of how much he may want to finally draw that line, he may be left with nothing in which he can draw it.
Are we there yet?
No, not quite. But in some parts of the world, we're getting awfully close.
To break this suicidal inertia, to banish this bland acceptance, to begin to draw that line in the sand, the common man must begin saying no to the beast. He must begin to think about where freedom originates and what it means to be free. He must realize that these are epic times that demand he commit to taking heroic action against the forces of evil.
What might this entail?
Well, I recently came across this little item in a Hungarian newspaper (code added):
The minister leading the Prime Minister’s Office said it was imperative for everyone to get their third (booster) pecks when needed. The ‘immunity’ of 3.7 million Hungarians will ‘expire’ on 10 December, he said, adding that six months since their second peck will have passed by then.
In four days time, nearly four million Hungarians will be officially demoted to unpecked status despite the two pecks they had taken earlier. Nearly four million!
What if every single one of those nearly four million people simply said "no"? What if they simply refused to show up for peck number three? Moreover, what if they were willing to face whatever consequences the Satanic totalitarians threatened to aim at them?
What if what if what if . . .
Do I think that's probable? Sadly, no.
At the same time, I think it's highly probable that a percentage of that four million will say no, will refuse peck number three, and will be willing to face whatever consequences the Satanic totalitarians throw at them. Furthermore, it's highly probable that a percentage of people in other countries will do the same.
And if enough people in the world begin to say no, then the line in the sand may become as prominent and meaningful as the line separating good from evil.
But lines must be drawn now before the sand disappears from under our feet.
Note added: It is impossible for us to know what may occur at the collective level, but we all exercise power over our choices at the individual level; and if we haven't already done so, we must draw our lines in the sand individually and be prepared to face whatever comes afterward.
Full disclosure - I am terribly pessimistic about what may happen at the collective level (perhaps overly so), but I am joyfully optimistic at what will happen at the level of the individual provided the individual understands the spiritual implications of these times.
One of my biggest struggles over the past twenty months or so has been coming to terms with the common man's bland acceptance of totalitarian absurdity during the birdemic.
Case in point, the recently implemented 2G+ birdemic rule in Austria. At some point during the birdemic, the Austrian government and many of the country's institutions implemented a discriminatory 3G, red light/green light QR-code pass system that was meant to bar untested unpecked individuals from nearly everything. Within this restrictive framework, an individual had to prove he was either pecked, recovered, or negative (by displaying the results of a recent, time-limited test) in order to attend a public performance or enter certain venues.
After Austria declared open war on the unpecked last month, the 3G model quickly began to shift to a 2G policy, which means only the pecked and the recovered who can prove their status via a digital code will be allowed certain "privileges". The unpecked, on the other hand, will be left out in the cold.
Well, that 2G policy is quickly transforming into a 2G+ policy for most venues, as outlined in a recent announcement by theaters in Vienna (code words added):
Dear ladies and gentlemen,
As you have probably already read in the media yesterday, the City of Vienna is planning to tighten the Birdemic measures again as of next week.
For events with 25 or more people, the »2G+« rule will apply. This means that even if you are - as is the case with well over 90% of our visitors every evening - fully pecked by a double peck, have already had your third booster peck or have been recovered you will also have to present a valid PCR test, no older than 48 hours, when attending one of our performances. The date of the test is valid, not the date of the result.
Unfortunately, we do not know exactly when these measures will come into effect. Should this happen at very short notice, we could therefore find ourselves in the situation of not being allowed to admit you in spite of a valid ticket and proof of 2G (»pecked-recovered«) in the evening.
There is nothing we can do about this other than ask you to keep an eye on further developments. Of course, we will inform you again as soon as any new details become known to us.
We deeply regret these circumstances, but we cannot influence them. We hope for your understanding.
Detailed information on the current birdemic measures can be found here.
Your team at the Vienna State Opera
I'll give you a minute to wrap your head around the overarching "logic" supporting these latest measures. Good luck!
Anyway, I found the "there is nothing we can do about this" and "we deeply regret these circumstances, but cannot influence them" lines to be quite revealing in terms of how the bland acceptance of totalitarian absurdity operates at the ground level.
It basically translates into something like this:
"We, the team at the Vienna State Opera, fully understand that all of this has become mind-numbing, cosmic-level bullshit, but we are too cowardly and too wedded to the System to feel any motivation to do anything about it.
Nonetheless, we also know that you, our cherished patrons, are likewise too cowardly and too wedded to the System to do anything besides blandly accept the continued implementation of this degrading, dehumanizing, absurd bullshit; hence, if we want the opera to be open at all, we'll all just have to suck it up, play along, and keep hoping for that return to normal we were promised so long ago."
Well, in addition to many other things, I have reached the conclusion that the bland acceptance of totalitarian absurdity equals the total surrender of all human dignity and self-respect.
I don't know how else to think about it at this point. The common man appears quite content to blandly accept anything and everything the totalitarians choose to dump on him.
And when I say anything and everything, I do mean anything and everything.
With great pomp and ceremony, I am honored to add the Irish pianist and composer John Field (1782 - 1837) to my long list of classical musicians and composers I had no idea even existed despite the half century I have spent on this planet thus far.
Field was highly respected by his contemporaries and has been credited for inventing the nocturne.
As I see it, 2020 marked a sort peak of things coming to a point. The distinctions between good and evil became incredibly sharp, clear, and direct, which entails that our decisions and life choices also became sharper, clearer, and more direct.
Though our natures and circumstances on earth hinder us from knowing good and evil absolutely, the events of 2020 - and everything that we have experienced since then - have provided us all with ample experiences and opportunities to clear the confusion, focus the blurring, and dispel the fog in order attain a deeper, fuller comprehension of good and evil.
Since the primary purpose of our mortal lives is spiritual learning, I imagine this increased awareness of good and evil has constructively accelerated and/or intensified the spiritual learning curves of some.
In this sense, the 2020 global coup and everything it has unleashed upon the world can be considered a blessing for the simple reason that it is one those rare times in history in which spiritual learning becomes undeniably plain and accessible to practically everyone.
Though we all have our unique spiritual learning journeys - replete with all the individual and personal lessons we are meant to learn during our mortal lives - our journeys invariably intersect and intertwine with the learning journeys of others, creating crucial opportunities and vital possibilities for us to teach and learn from each other.
Nevertheless, the ultimate responsibility for spiritual learning remains firmly at the level of the individual. In this time and place, we are free to accept or reject anything we experience or encounter. This includes coherent communications from other beings - and it even includes lucid communications from the Divine.
When I envision spiritual learning from a historical perspective, I come the tentative conclusion that cooperative, relational learning between individuals or - on a larger scale - between individuals and the greater culture/civilization played a fundamental role in spiritual learning at both the individual and societal level.
Put another way, an individual could access practically all he or she needed to individually learn from his or her culture and society. Conversely, the spiritual learning of individual members of society could advance the spiritual knowledge of culture and society as a whole.
In simple terms, throughout the greater part of history, individuals could derive the majority of their spiritual learning from external, collective sources. Though personal choices still ultimately needed to be made, much of the heavy lifting concerning the distinctions between good and evil was firmly embedded within culture and society. Granted, this leaves out swathes of exceptions to the rule, but all-in-all the alignment of individual consciousness with external, general consciousness tended to make the distinctions between good and evil fairly clear and comprehensible.
The opposite is true now. The distinctions between good and evil only become clear and comprehensible when the individual becomes unaligned with the external, collective consciousness of culture and society.
The point of 2020 has made spiritual learning an exclusively individual matter. Any individual who remains aligned with prevailing social consciousness will find it extremely difficult if not impossible to learn anything spiritually. Practically all "official" external sources of spiritual guidance - be it in the form of churches, governments, or institutions - have been corrupted. The only external sources of real spiritual guidance that remain open to the individual are some forms of recorded knowledge and other individuals. Though both can provide benefit, the ultimate responsibility for the actual spiritual learning remains solely with the individual.
Those who are helplessly wedded to the System are literally incapable of acknowledging the point of 2020. As a result, they are proving themselves to be literally incapable of any kind of learning, let alone spiritual learning. Most attempts to engage these sorts of people to acknowledge the obvious end in failure. Yet those who recognize the spiritual ramifications of things coming to a point in 2020 are not immune to spiritual blind spots, faulty discernment, or lack of learning.
Things coming to a point in 2020 brought good and evil sharply into focus, thereby eliminating the need or desire to "debate" grey area issues. Those who continue to push concepts like neutrality, non-alignment, relativity, and moderation have pretty much missed "the point" entirely; so, there is not much use in debating these concepts with them.
By the same token, there is not much use in trying convince those who see the reality of things having come to a point, but remain trapped in unresolved entanglements of worldly self-enslavement. This is particularly relevant when it pertains to Christians.
The point of "things coming to a point" is not limited to the undeniable clarification of good and evil in this world - it extends into eternity. Hence, the decisions and choices we have made and continue to make in our mortal lives after the point must not be hemmed in by purely temporal considerations - they must encompass the spiritual; that is, the totality of the cosmos.
Worldly considerations will undoubtedly influence our decisions and choices, but they must not drive them. The decisions and choices we make in this world must be spiritual, cosmic decisions. They must at once both encompass and transcend our current earthly circumstances. And these choices will have to made by us alone, individually - bearing full responsibility.
In many ways, this encapsulates the ethos of Christianity. At its core, Christianity requires conviction, but this conviction must emerge freely and willingly from within us as individuals. During His time on earth, Jesus spoke and lived truth - and He continues to speak and live truth today - but during His time on earth He invested very little effort in trying to convince others of the truth.
He based His mission in freedom and in love. Hence, He respected the authority, sovereignty, freedom, and agency of every individual He encountered. He did not encroach upon this individual sovereignty, freedom, and agency by trying to convince anyone of the truth He revealed. All the individuals Jesus encountered were free to embrace or reject the truth He offered.
And this remains the case today.
In my mind, this reflects the very essence of spiritual learning as revealed scornfully by the Grand Inquisitor in Fyodor Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov:
Thou didst desire man's free love, that he should follow Thee freely, enticed and taken captive by Thee. In place of the rigid, ancient law, man must hereafter with free heart decide for himself what is good and what is evil, having only Thy image before him as his guide.
Like Jesus, I don't think Christians should expend great effort in trying to convince anyone of anything, particularly not after the events 2020. This includes fellow Christians.
Yes, we should certainly share our insights, ideas, and views, but we must refrain from attempting to convince fellow Christians of the truth of these insights, ideas, and views knowing full well that such attempts at convincing work against the nature of spiritual learning.
We can and must communicate, but we must accept that the "convincing part" must be left to the individual alone.
And if the individual remains unconvinced by an obvious truth - even against the backdrop of the 2020 point and the ever-increasing distinctions between cosmic good and cosmic evil - then we must allow that individual to "live and let learn" and continue his spiritual learning and (hopefully) find his own way to conviction, provided he or she ever finds that conviction at all.
The overarching goal of spiritual learning is the alignment of the individual with God, but the manifestation of this alignment is completely in the hands of the individual alone.
Other beings can offer inspiration, motivation, guidance, and support, but no one, not even God, can "convince" any individual to align themselves with the Divine. All individuals must make that choice on their own. And that is exactly as it should be - especially now.
Such is the scope and depth of our individual spiritual power and responsibility.
Using the video below to drive home a point is terribly indulgent of me. Nevertheless, it perfectly encapsulates how I feel about the EU's *unexpected* push to *consider* and *debate* peck mandates on the continent.
Strong language warning!
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