Chris Hedges talks to Ron Purser, professor of management at San Francisco State University, about the growth of mindfulness meditation in the mainstream. As meditation makes its way into schools, prisons and government agencies, Purser argues the booming cottage industry with its promises of “Buddhist-inspired” techniques tries to offer a universal panacea for resolving almost every area of daily concern. While it can be helpful, compartmentalizing the practice away from asking why there is so much stress in daily life and away from making challenges to corporate and political practices could do more harm than good.
PR: Kenn, this question haunts me: Is it still possible, amid constant inundation by the mass and social media simulacrum, for literature, poetry or a music to rouse the heart and foment rebellion against one’s complicity in what amounts to a bondage of sensibility? Naturally, we are given to outrage but, for the most part, it is directed, if we are honest, at our own sense of powerlessness against the mind-stupefying roil of events.
PR: What has been of greater service to humanity, the dark vision of humanity, limned in satire, by Jonathan Swift or the positivity-rancid homilies of corporate church of self-actualization? What is more propitious to the psyche, a descent into the underworld by Orphic imagination or the Icarusian dazzle on Instagram or the narcissistic intoxication induced by gazing upon one’s image reproduced by a thousand retweets on Twitter?
Kenn, I’ve noticed in your pieces you explore the topic of the myriad and perpetual degradations that capitalism inflicts on the powerless. Thus given the unfolding of recent events e.g., the arrest of Jeffrey Epstein, I’m curious as to your response to my (initial) take on the matter. Withal, the hyper-commodification of the bodies of young women is part and parcel of the economic dynamic of late stage capitalism whereby the earth is degraded to the point of global-wide ecocide and cities are rendered into vanilla cupcake zones of nada by hyper-gentrification.
In this depth psychology oriented discussion powered by Pacifica Graduate Institute, Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist Chris Hedges speaks with Depth Psychologist, Bonnie Bright, Ph.D, about how, as both individuals and civilizations, we encounter cycles of growth, maturation, decadence, and decay, and death.
Hypothesis of its epigenetic and mass psychological role inside the mass mental apparatus
Elections for the political offices in the US are incomparably worse than any horror movies, as they repeatedly and inevitably reproduce the basic politico-economic structures and institutions of class divisions, inequality, injustice, vast deprivations, crime, mental illness, selfishness, aggressions, wars, and severe damages to the ecology of nature and human nature-within the context of the most advanced capitalist political economy and the most developed scientifico-technological forces of production and destruction-which, among other things, invariably cause destruction of tens of millions of lives globally, as well as, to a lesser extent, domestically, through wars and invasions, impoverishment and deprivations that cause severe multidimensional damages to human lives, diabolical expenditures of financial and human resources on the military war machine and production of ever more destructive and advanced weapons and systems of mass destruction, and great damages to the biosphere and all the life-supporting systems of the planet. No horror movie can come even close to the reality produced by these “democratic” elections.
I’m not sure when I first became aware of the term sociopath. I feel like I’ve always known about it but never really knew what the term meant. A couple of years ago I got curious and checked out The Sociopath Next Door, by Martha Stout, PhD., from my local library. In the book, Dr. Stout writes a list of the traits of a sociopath with the statement, “Chances are good you’re a sociopath if you possess three out of seven.”
Pulling back the curtain on how intent the wealthiest Americans have been on establishing a propaganda tool to subvert democracy.
Where there is the possibility of democracy, there is the inevitability of elite insecurity. All through its history, democracy has been under a sustained attack by elite interests, political, economic, and cultural. There is a simple reason for this: democracy – as in true democracy – places power with people. In such circumstances, the few who hold power become threatened. With technological changes in modern history, with literacy and education, mass communication, organization and activism, elites have had to react to the changing nature of society – locally and globally.
As such a useful tool of exchange, money is not inherently evil. Money can be a springboard to such evil as bailout-begging banks too monstrous to fail gambling with taxpayer wealth—you know, private profits, public risk. Casino financialization with taxpayers as a backstop. The $700 billion TARP bailout actually being a$23.7 trillion bailout. But the root of all evil is the human brain.
Napoleon Bonaparte called history “A set of lies agreed upon.”
It’s even been said that lies are the glue that holds civilization together.
And now, before our eyes, lies accumulate like flies on flypaper, germy, nasty things that get processed, pasteurized, and homogenized into history. Examples seem endless: from elections rigged with e-voting, to the heinous false flag circus of 9/11, to the Global War on Terror, to evisceration of the Constitution to “protect” people, to the off-the-charts upward transfer of wealth of bankster bailouts, to the murder of over a million people amid destruction of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya….
In an investigative report for Truthout, my colleagues Jason Leopold and the psychologist and blogger Jeffrey Kaye have followed up on an important story they published three weeks ago, “Controversial Drug Given to All Guantánamo Detainees Akin to ‘Pharmacologic Waterboarding’” (which I cross-posted here, with commentary). In that article, they revealed how, in the months following the opening of Guantánamo on January 11, 2002, every single prisoner was forced to “take a high dosage of a controversial antimalarial drug, mefloquine, an act that an Army public health physician called ‘pharmacologic waterboarding.’”