1. And so, I return to democracy, especially in America.
Whatever has become of the Republican party?
There are a great many Republicans, Trump and his allies, who admire Putin. Trump never made any secrets of his admiration for Putin, and his desire to be the of the kind of leader that Putin is.
And there are great many Republicans, in particular who have no interest in democracy, many in the Republican Party aspire to be the kind of government that flourishes in Russia and other dictatorships. They want a strong authoritarian leader who will lay down the law and tell everyone what to do and not do, who will give him positions of power and wealth in his government, like the oligarchies in Russia.  They hope for a life of luxury, and to rule over the vast majority of ordinary people.
Mitt Romney gave a remarkable interview with CNN just over a week ago, talking about this tendency in America, to move into some form of an authoritarian dictatorship.
It has been fairly clear for some time that a great many Republicans have no interest in democracy whatsoever.  They have abandoned all their principles to become the party of Donald Trump.
The mob who stormed the capital on January 6, urged on by Trump and his associates, make clear that a great many Republicans were on his side.
The most important thing that happened that day, was what did not happen, what could’ve happened and didn’t, if our elected leaders had been found.
The mob was mobbed with guns and explosives, all that saved our elected representatives is the fact that they were quickly hidden by some of the capital police, and a few courageous policemen managed to lead the mob away from the room where they were hidden.
Trump and his associate attempted a coup. One, to overturn the result of a free election, and the other to simply overthrow the government.
And now, Biden has been calling for some time, a renaissance in democracy.
Several times over the past five years Putin has aired photos of violent protests in American streets and declared:  Democracy is now over in the West.
He has completely misunderstood the kind of resilience that democracies have, to weather the extremes.  Putin has underestimated the resilience of democracy, he also u misunderstood the capacity for democratic countries in an organization like NATO, that could find common ground. Let alone the rest of the world, joining in solidarity against this kind of treatment of violent destruction of a small country.
Putin thought NATO would splinter, but NATO has unified.  And Putin thought that the rest of the world would turn a blind eye to his designs on the Ukraine.
Putin underestimated his ability to shut down the love of truth, in his own country.  Somehow information is getting out to the Russians about what he is doing in the Ukraine, and possibly elsewhere. 4500 Russian protesters, against his government, were arrested.
Americans need to take a cue from Mitt Romney‘s description of how this dictator works.  The lies, the fear, the control, the level of destruction of both vibrant cities and human life that dictators freely indulge in.
As I write this day, Russian forces have completely destroyed a large hospital filled with children and pregnant women.  This is how Putin defines his manhood.

Is this who Americans want to be?

  1. And now, Russia is said to be divided, half of the population following Putin, the other half protesting the invasion of the Ukraine. America is also divided, between Republicans and Democrats, old and young, the rich, the middle-class and poor, and the divisions are deep.

But they are not as deep as the ties that bind us, and it is time to find out what we all share.

  1. Here is my vision for the people. The real division in the world is not among different political parties, except by association. It is a division between fear and love. Putin represents a kind of male energy, a male leadership that has dominated, run, and ruled the world. We are in the midst of a revolution leaving behind us our long Winter. This form of government and the values that it embodies, has prevailed here for thousands of years.
What is new in the world is that we are moving into our Springtime, a new civilization based Love, on the recognition that we are all equal, that we are all connected, economically, socially and politically, that we are one world. The virus has made this very clear to us, it has also made clear to us the callousness and the cruelty of this old way of being, this form of government and leadership.
But what is remarkable in the present situation, is how far in fact the world has emerged into this new form, these new values, and this form of government, based on Love and truth, the respect for all life, the Earth, people, everywhere.
We are called to rethink ourselves from the ground up.
Look how far America has moved into Putin’s direction, an authoritarian superpower.  We live our lives these days in a tissue of lies. We need to wake up to the kind of lies we are buying into, and the forces that are in the end attempting to destroy American democracy.
Trump is the perfect example as is Putin of the fear orientation. He is run by fear, he comes from fear, and he uses fear to control the Republican Party in general and democracy as well.
The true division is between fear and Love. Are we going to be run and ruled by this of kind of fear? We have all had a look at the paralysis that fear creates in government. Trump and the Republican party have largely become the party run ruled by Donald Trump: Yes Donald, of course Donald, whatever you say Donald.
Republicans do not dare to speak out against Trump and his form of leadership because they know he will insult them and possibly ruin their chances for reelection.
Americans need to start standing up for Love and Truth, those are the stakes that we are all caught in.
We need to wake up to the way we are being manipulated with lies, and kept in fear, and to make a conscious choice for the Love orientation.
We have all had an opportunity over the last five or six years to see how fear functions.
America’s not really a democracy at this point, but it is an oligarchy as is Russia run and ruled by the rich.
But there are other values shaping democracy as well. The conviction now emerging everywhere that it is not simply that the rich have a right to the wealth of a society, but all of us have the right to participate in the full wealth of the Nation.
Biden is a remarkable example of another kind of leader.  He is in the Love orientation and cares about all of the people.  Not simply the rich.  His economic policies are based on the strength of the poor and middle class, and he has vowed that truth and science, the science of global warming and climate change, would be at the core of his presidency.
We are looking at a very new kind of leadership in the world, and expression of a grassroots uprising of ordinary people everywhere.  It’s always been there but it hasn’t been in charge.
I dare say that at this point Love is in fact in charge, and it is at work reshaping our whole world.
Capitalism itself has shown a remarkable ability to deal with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, its ability to isolate Putin from the whole of the financial system of the world.
Every day brings new revelations about what’s happening in Ukraine.   And what is happening in the whole world, the global community, and the global economy.
We have had a tremendous revelation both in how fear works and how lies work.  No one knows what to believe, we are all tossed about in a fog of opinions.  And we have all had revelation about how the government by the rich does not work.
We are in a revolution based on Love.  It is finally time that we extricate ourselves from thousands of years of being run and ruled by fear lies and control, death and destruction everywhere, to move into a new world based on Love and Truth, and respect for life in all of  its many forms.  We are coming into a deep understanding of the planet, the emerging awareness of the destructive practices of our economies towards the Earth.

The Ukrainians are fighting for their freedom. Their freedom from the yoke of Russian rule.  And so just what is so wonderful about freedom? What is wonderful about Love? Every day we are learning lessons. The true meaning of democracy and freedom, what unites us, and the interconnectedness of all nations in all economies, realizing that war is simply obsolete.   We are beginning to find creative solutions to help the Ukrainian government, and I dare say, the Russian people themselves.

  1. There is an inextinguishable yearning in the human soul for freedom, for self-determination. Where does this yearning come from and what is it really mean? Why do we love freedom so much? How can we achieve understanding and unity among all of us?
It is wake up time on the planet, big time. At every level and depth of the modern world we are called to a moment of our own truth.  Truth as a nation, but really, these days, for every one of us this is the moment of truth of who are, and you what do you stand for.
The old stuff is all around us, embodied by both Trump and Putin.  This is how it’s been for a very long time in the world, this is what we are now putting behind us.
Biden is calling for a renaissance in democracy.  And he seeks to put the economy and its values on a new footing. With the support of the best economists in the country, he is rebuilding infrastructure both physical and economic, on a single premise:  We the people.
Remember how the Declaration of the United Nations begins:  We the people of the United Nations are determined to save future generations from the scourge of war that has twice in our lifetime has brought untold suffering and misery….

He seeks to put a footing under the deepest truth that everyone matters, everyone belongs, everyone has a role to play, everyone is entitled to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  And so are every living being on the Earth, every earthworm, every field mouse, every tree plant and flower, all of the animals.

  1. The Ukraine is a call to remember ourselves, and what it was we were once willing to die for in the name of freedom. It is a call to recognize our connections with one another, and with the Earth.

This day the whole world is focused on the shining light in the Ukraine.  The people united by a visionary new hero and inspired by Zelensky’s leadership.

  1. These times are very much like the tumultuous years of the 60’s, the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, the Kennedy assassination, the Cuban Missile crisis. They were a time of making values and ideas clear.
And once again, as then, Bob Dylan’s words ring true:  How many roads must a man walk down before they will call him a man?  How many deaths will it take till he knows to many people have died?  The answer my friend is blowing in the wind…And then:  The times they are a changing….
These are times where everyone is called to define themselves, and their own truth. Democracies do not work like dictatorships.  They appear messier. They are based on the conviction that individual’s matter, children’s lives matter.  Democracies are messy, they have their own ways of arriving at understanding and unity.  They are based on the deep metaphysical conviction that everybody is deeply equal, that truth comes through discussion, and that civil liberties that are precious to us. They are in fact our guiding principles.
Freedom is not about “I’m free no is going to tell me what to do.”  With freedom come responsibilities.  One person’s freedom ends where another person’s health and well-being, and their lives begin.
Access to information, goes hand-in-hand with democracy, as does truth, Love, respect for others, and an economy based on respect for both people and the planet.
Capitalism does not have to have the cruel face it has always had.  Capitalism needs to start doing the right thing, decent work, decent wages, the health and well-being of the Earth honored everywhere.
The lesson of the Ukraine:  In America, big money runs everything, and everyone has his price.  When you want to know what is shaping people’s arguments, or their voting practices, check out their funding sources.  With events in the Ukraine, we are looking at men and women who cannot be bought.  And they should be put to shame the indifference and the apathy for the practices we take for granted.
The endless political bickering that goes on everywhere, the endless little ego games we all play, are an insult to the Ukrainian people.  We should all be ashamed of what we have allowed ourselves to become.  Many cared for little our civil liberties that they did not even vote in the 2016 election, that put Trump into the White House.
We have allowed ourselves to be ruled by fear for the last 5 years, but with the election of Trump there has grown a tremendous uprising of the Love orientation, and it is now high time we took back our power, our trust, our belief in ourselves, and awakened.
At the deepest levels of the world, we know that we are divine beings living on a planet equally divine as ourselves, and we need to make our basic truths universal.
Go beyond fear.  Fear lies and control have run events for thousands of years, they are now up for us, and their time is over.  Become aware of the ways you are being run and ruled by fear and put an end to them.  Make a space for your fears, move beyond them.
The problems the human race has now caused for itself are monumental.  If we are to solve them, it is time to drop the endless little games we are playing, and to take up our full responsibilities for the Earth and one another.
And so, a renaissance in democracy.
The Republican Party needs to grow up, to outgrown Donald Trump and the fear that he rules them by, that have made cowards out of all of them.  Democracy only works through tremendous goodwill, and deep faith, the strength to lead and the faith to follow, and to work with one another despite our differences.
Remember what happened when Obama began his second term.  Mitch McConnell said to him:  We don’t care what bills you send to us; we will not work with you.
The Republicans need to come of age.  They have just one focus, getting reelected.  They are convinced the only way to do so is to look good to Trump’s base, and to rig the voting districts to prevent Democrats voting.
It never occurs to them that they could get reelected by offering the American people some good policies and ideas.  One never hears any policy statements, or any of the ways they would actually help the American people, they simply seem to be interested in their corporate sponsors, i.e., making money, and one another.  Despite their support, they tend to consist of rich white males, meanspirited toward any overhaul of the financial system.
They have one policy:  Whatever Biden proposes, they will block.  And then any policy that comes from Democrats, they will block, even though it might benefit their constituents.
It is now time for the Mitch McConnell’s of the world to cross the aisle and tell President Biden:  We will work with you.
And so, there are no Republicans or Democrats, old or young, rich or poor.  There are no foreign countries.  No dictatorships or democracies.  It is all about people helping people and people helping the Earth. And it is time for a little common sense, about how to live with one another how to live with the Earth.
And now, in every hour of every single day, we are making the choices that are going to change our world forever.  Something wholly new awaits us, let the events in Ukraine, and the determination of the world to help the Ukrainians, inspire all of us into creative answers for our own lives.
Fear shuts us down, takes away our power, ruins our health and our sleep, destroys discussion, makes slaves out of every one of us.  T.S. Elliot:  I will show you something worse than death, I will show you fear.
The challenge of this moment is to put fear behind us and move into the kind of courage and responsibility now manifesting in the Ukrainian people and the determination of the whole world to help them.
Every day, at every moment, we are facing the choice between good and evil, Love or fear.  Every one matters, you are the one who can make the difference, your hour is here, your time is now.

Make the most of your opportunities.