Why I will NOT watch the Ken Burns Vietnam War documentary

Let’s face it, folks. Life in the U.S.A. = PTSD. For everyone. Automatically. “Shock and Awe,” over and over and over again — faster and faster and faster. At this point in time, there is basically, no time to process anything before the next shock hits. Which makes cultivating awareness of the present moment an absolute necessity.

This new, fear-mongering “Korean War” meme  just puts me right back there.

I remember exactly what I was doing when I heard over the radio that the Korean War started. That was in June, 1950, and I was 7 years old.

I remember being called out of the classroom at Catholic University to amass in the cathedral when JFK was killed.

I remember nursing my new baby boy — when I heard on the radio Johnson announce the Gulf on Tonkin “incident;” feeling that familiar dread, I knew internally that this was the start of another war.

While sitting glued to TV news: Robert Kennedy. Martin Luther King. The “first Gulf War” in Iraq. 9/11. 9/11. 9/11. Afghanistan. Iraq again.

That last was in early 2003. From then on the assasinations and (false) starts of wars grow hazy, confusing.  And there are no stops. Only endless, wrathful murder and destruction of what is not ours.

None of the assasinations occurred, and none of the wars started, the way we were told they did. 

So it’s very very difficult for me to even get past the whitewash (the red, white and bluewash) of the Vietnam War as a “fateful misunderstanding.” WHAT? Though that is how MacNamara later tried to rationalize the situation, the truth appears to be otherwise.

Robert S. MacNamara and the real Tonkin Gulf deception

Is the American public so brainwashed that we would actually sit through this series, when its assumptions are grounded in falsehood?

Here’s John Pilger, who watched the first episode.

The Killing of History


I watched the first episode in New York. It leaves you in no doubt of its intentions right from the start. The narrator says the war “was begun in good faith by decent people out of fateful misunderstandings, American overconfidence and Cold War misunderstandings”.

The dishonesty of this statement is not surprising. The cynical fabrication of “false flags” that led to the invasion of Vietnam is a matter of record – the Gulf of Tonkin “incident” in 1964, which Burns promotes as true, was just one. The lies litter a multitude of official documents, notably the Pentagon Papers, which the great whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg released in 1971.

There was no good faith. The faith was rotten and cancerous. For me – as it must be for many Americans – it is difficult to watch the film’s jumble of “red peril” maps, unexplained interviewees, ineptly cut archive and maudlin American battlefield sequences.


And here are two more opinion pieces, just in case you think Pilger is overstating the Burns bullshit.

Ken Burns documentary? Or should I watch Game of Thrones again.


The Storytellers of Empire





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CE-5 training: Nearby, with son Colin, for five nights


Now that I’ve pretty much caught up on sleep, I will say a few words here about our experience in a nearby field, 14 of us (mostly hailing from elsewhere), on lawn chairs, in a circle, from 8:30 pm on. We begin with meditation: grounding ourselves as individuals, tuning into loving group intention, calling in benevolent ETS, for three or more hours.

Our experiences were, we hear, typical of CE-5 groups. Flashing lights of various kinds and duration, some of them attuned to our thoughts, and our own flashes back, in seeming telepathic communion. Colin and I have been invited to participate with a local group monthly, at the New Moon. Will get apps for both the sky and satellite schedules.

I’m embarrassed to think that even though I’m an astrologer, I don’t really know the constellations. So that when someone says, as a pointer, “SW of the Dolphin, ten degrees,” I have no clue. From the ephemeris, I know if there’s a transiting planet overhead; and I recognize the Pleiades, the Big Dipper, the North Star, Orion, and that’s it! Oh wait; now, thanks to our CE-5 adventure, I also know Viga, which happens to be the second brightest star in the heavens.

Some of our experiences were individual, for each of us alone. This happened to me twice, once on the first night, and again on the third night. I was the only one to see, for a duration of at most two seconds, on those two occasions, a sudden brilliant flash of bright red that pulsed instantaneously out and in. I was amazed that I actually saw it, “clear as day,” despite that my night vision is notoriously poor (especially with grievously scratched glasses). It was as if, with that red flash, everything else disappeared and reappeared afterwards.

But that was only one of many different kinds of sightings, each of which were either seen by one person or several or the entire group. And each time, the question was, of course: plane, helicopter, satellite? If not, then ET? One of the people present, Matt, who has focused most of his adult life on contact with ET species, during one sighting was able to telepathically ask them to pulse again, and again, and again! The instantaneous response, three times, was something the entire group witnessed — and cheered!

It was wonderful to be with people who are willing to sense and experience human communion with other species in the cosmos. In the afternoons, there were many personal stories, along with a few experiments in remote viewing, and otherwise sensing energies. Some in the group have “had contact” all their lives. As have their parents, and their children and grandchildren. Others were newbies, though with long-term longings. For me, it was not a first time, but I knew I had to bring Colin with me. For him . . . well, I’ll let him tell his own story — to be featured at our next Green Acres Village Community Dinner, Thursday, September 28 . . .

Let’s just say that what happened with him was spectacular and, he told me the next day, “life-changing.”

I used to think that astrology could function as the language to unite us all, no matter where we live, beneath culture and language, since it has to do with our relationship with the sky under which we all live.

Now I realize that what unites us cosmically is simply the common human experience of the sky, not any language we use to describe it. After all, languages must be learned. And since astrology happens to be a difficult language to really absorb, it may forever remain somewhat esoteric.

Kosta Andreas, a funny and humble man who thinks big and has charged himself with keeping the “People’s Disclosure” movement begun in the 1990s by Dr. Steven Greer going, now counts 11,000 members world-wide, in small groups, who follow the CE-5 protocols: www.ETletstalk.com 

Kosta brought with him his wife Hollis and her friend Debz, both of them, as I told them with intense gratitude, CRONES! Yes! Fully evolving, multi-talented and skilled elder women, both psychic, and in touch with many dimensions. So glad to meet these sisters!

And the host for this occasion, Jeff Becker, has collected first person contact stories for a wonderful book, Paths to Contact, which Debz recommended, and now has me magnetized until done. Since I rarely actually read books these days, that’s quite a complement! Colin gets it next.

Kosta, Matt, Jeff, in goodbye circle, prior to final evening CE-5 field experience.

It’s hilarious. At first, my podmates here in the Green Acres Village looked askance at my announcement that I would be mostly absent during this week, because I was going to a UFO workshop. But after only one night, they were all on pins and needles, wondering what happened.

I gave them some clues, but told them they would have to wait until next Thursday evening for the full story.

I find it very interesting that the government-sponsored and promoted mind-control to label all ET contact stories as either nonsense or swamp gas can so quickly give way once one person simply announces, without flinching, that she takes the idea seriously, and then follows through by going to a workshop. If the “ridicule factor” can be dispelled so easily, what other walls in our collective mind are beginning to dissolve?

Of course, aboriginal peoples around the world do not find the idea that cosmos and nature are connected strange. Rather, the union of all species, “all our relations,” is obvious. And deeply sacred.

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Green Acres Village, Community Dinner — and Equinox Ceremony, and more!

Green Acres Village, Community Dinner, September 21 — and Equinox Ceremony, and more!

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ET: All “good”? Or, some “good,” some “evil.” The $64,000 question. Or is it?

It certainly may be the question in this third dimension, where we learn about linear “cause and effect” from continuous application of free will to choices between contrasts. And if that’s the dimension that all ETs (and interdimensionals, and perhaps other earthlings  (faeries, elementals, dolphins and whales, spirits of the place, etc.) are in fact occupying, then, yes, I’d say there are both kinds. However, might it be that once one increases one’s frequency, that at “higher” levels, in “higher” dimensions, that’s not the case, that all ETs (and interdimensionals, etc.) ARE what we would call benevolent?

This may be one way to harmonize what is probably the biggest controversy within the UFO community.

Here’s Carol Rosin and Steven Greer, both of whom assume — in fact, both are adamant — that any “bad” stuff that goes on with supposed ETs is actually humanmade, including abductions.


(Frankly, I personally have trouble seeing humans in little grey costumes, pretending to be little greys abducting humans, but then again, hey! And besides, it might be that humans have manufactured these little biological entities which apparently  function more like machines than like ensouled beings.)

In the UFO world, there are way more people who see ETs as both good and bad, depending upon which species, and which agenda. (And of course, it certainly is a way to sell more tickets — whether to movies or to conferences.)

Plus, in both camps (good vs. good/bad), the idea is now commonplace that humans themselves have technologies far beyond what most of us are aware of (some of them back engineered from crashed ET craft); indeed, that not only must we ask “whose UFO — theirs or ours?” when we see one, but that “We now have the technology” as Ben Rich, of Lockheed’s Skunkworks once famously remarked, ” to take ET home.”

Not only that, but as far as “evil” goes, we humans certainly take the cake! Check this out, one possibility re:  current weather wars, as we wait, with baited breath, for Hurricane Jose, now parked off the east cost, to batter New York during the upcoming UN conference . . .

Was Hurricane Irma Steered by Masers from Satellites in Weather War Against the US?

Carol Rosin would say no. In fact, she’s adamant about this idea, too, that at least so far, “THERE ARE NO WEAPONS IN SPACE!!”

Let’s back up a bit from this and other controversies over Es and all the rest that the heavens which enclose our small sphere offers. Let’s remember, as we are beginning to realize, that we humans too are “made of star dust;” plus, if some of us are even ETs ourselves, or at least with hybrid DNA, then the distinction between extraterrestrial and human tends to thin and dissolve.

One more 3D “contrast” that we will no longer have to choose between! No longer have to consider visitors from afar or from underground or other dimensions “alien”! Ultimately, perhaps, we will realize that in all of the infinite, mysterious cosmos there are no strangers, there are only other beings, like ourselves, all seeking to express their own natures in communion with all the others.

In any case, looking at the question of “all good” or “some good and some bad” multidimensionally may help us recognize that no matter what we think or believe, it’s all true in some dimension or other; plus, that whatever we can imagine has probably already been done.

I came across a very interesting name to give my own open attitude towards humans and their “beLIEfs.” It’s a Jain concept: Anekantavada. Check it out!

This afternoon and evening (8 p.m. to midnight) I will be gathering with son Colin Cudmore and about a dozen others from near and far who are to meet in nearby Brown County, for the next five days, September 17-21, to learn the protocols for ET contact in the afternoons, and then to sit with binoculars in the evening, in a meadow, for four hours. Not sure how much I’ll be able to blog, if any! But you can be sure I will have lots to report afterwards.

Here’s the website for what we’re about to do here with Kosta Gus Makreas.



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Green Acres Village News, September 16, 2017: Community Dinners begin again, plus compost struggles and string bean tale

Weekly community dinners begin again, YES! — plus compost struggles, string bean tale

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Siberia, and final post: Lake Baikal again, but first: another Buddhist monastery, a high market and waterfall, Roerich paintings! plus gardens

Note: This series is archived here.

I think I mentioned before that Siberian villages in the valley south of the Sayan mountains and Lake Baikal are usually small (200 people?), with tiny wooden houses and colorful shutters. J.K.:

These villages are all fenced in. Old wood with bright blue shutters. Like in the fairy tales. I think of Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, Grandfather and Sonia the Duck and Sascha the bird, and what was the cat’s name?

It seems to me that from one of these villages you can almost see another one in the far distance. I think back to the day, decades ago, when I realized that the similar distance between small towns in the U.S. — remember them? This was before they emptied out,  due to small nearby farmers selling out to Big Ag with its endless miles of GMO soybean and corn, Monsanto territory — was set by how many miles horse and rider or horse and buggy could travel in one day.

Already, during the few short months of long summer days, Russian villagers have made enormous piles of logs awaiting winter’s fires.  

Our journey was winding down. During the final days we were in the foothills of the Sayan mountains, visiting another Buddhist monastery —  (notice the prayer flags here, in common with Mongolian shamanic altars and other special places)

A corner detail from their restaurant.

—and then up another long gravel road into the mountains to visit an area with many springs. Walked up a long road past an outdoor market,

to bathe in the negative ions of a waterfall . . .

The night after our “methane springs” experience, on our way out to the main road . . .

We saw Lama again and he came out and waved goodbye, come back, Americans. There’s rain this morning. The sky is dense with clouds, the mountains shrouded.

This was our final day in Siberia. A day when we were to visit Lake Baikal again, this time on the western side, within easy distance of Irkutsk, at its southern end. We would fly back to Ulan Bator from there in the morning.

We had tried to get to the Lake via the Mercedes [van] and reached a fork in the road. As the immortal Yogi Berra says, when you reach a fork, take it. We deliberate; this is new territory. Some kid says something and then the guides ask a woman and so we turn right. The vehicle carrying a casket turns left.

Yes, when we stopped there for our deliberations, an ramshackle old truck rumbled up, turned left, carrying a casket!

Narrow road thru a deep fairy forest. I think of Yeats’ “Come away, human child, to the waters.” It’s very steep, and to our right the trees and to our left, again, trees but they go all the way down.

When we finally arrived at the tiny parking lot where we would begin our trek down after the lurching ride down a narrow, pot-holed dirt lane, branches switching both sides of the van, I asked Erjen, “What about lunch? Shouldn’t we have brought  food?” Ever the first child of a large family, thinking ahead to what the group would need, I was concerned that without food some wouldn’t have energy to tackle the long walk UP later. Can’t remember what she said, but whatever it was I remembered that I was to trust; trust, Ann!


Then a very long walk through these enchanted woods, over rocks and crossings made of logs and planks, Elizabeth holding on to Rinchin.

Erjen holding on to daughter Mascha too! As Erjen told me later, “I had on the wrong shoes.” Hmmm. Didn’t she know what we were doing either? It was quite a long trail, down, with lots of rocks and roots, about one enchanted hour from the van to the final clearing in front of the lake. I relished every minute of it. And yet, all the while, I, and I imagine, everybody else was dreading the hike UP later . . .

Finally here’s the Irkut River, and it doesn’t flow to Irkutsk.

Oh wow! We break into the clearing and look what’s ahead. A picnic feast put on by a tiny restaurant — out in the middle of nowhere?

What a meal! Tomatoes, cheese, red pepper, bread [and much more!] at a long board of a table outside on this splendid day.

Not sure when we were told that we would not have to walk back up, but instead take a pontoon boat to Irkutsk. Rinchin and one of the other guides would run back up and drive the bus back to meet us at the landing spot. YES!

And then into the little Roerich museum. There are framed images and photos of his life, two rows of 11 each. I want to live in one of his paintings, the one with the sky bear sailing open-armed toward the sky woman.

The museum was a stunning surprise. (BTW: notice the clear, dark blue sky. No chemtrails in either Siberia or Mongolia.)

As were the gardens nestled below it that the nearby restaurant drew upon for our beautiful meal.

His paintings held me spellbound. In them I feel the mysterious communion that links earth to human to sky. I sense in his paintings a silent stillness of this vast being, studded with light and shadow, that draws draws me in and holds me close.

Afterwards, we . . .

circle up the river a bit, [close to the railroad tracks said to have been laid by political prisoners during the gulag — A.K.] as the sun sets behind the mountains. It is one of 350 rivers that flow into Baikal; only one flows out and it leads to the Arctic Ocean.

Here’s my diet: meat, sugar, cabbage, potatoes, green tea, Mongolian salted/buttered/milk tea, sometimes beets. My kidneys cannot handle this meat.

And the sweetest strawberries I have ever had, the absolute essence of the fruit bursting in my mouth.

Speaking of food, I was surprised at how few home gardens we saw in Siberia, or in Mongolia for that matter.

Aha! But here’s one . .  .

I had heard that people in Moscow lived through the difficult ’90s by growing their own food in their dachas outside the city — and thought that was probably true throughout Siberia. I didn’t grok just how enormous and scarcely populated is the Russian heartland. Just the other day, I read where Putin, who in 2016 invited any American of Russian ancestry  to move to Siberia, where they will receive a hectare of land, free, has now  proposed that only organic food be grown in Russia, that Russia become the world’s source of organic food.

Here is another very intentional garden on the southern shore of Lake Baikal, used to supply a restaurant along the road. This little village farm is also the source of the strawberries J.K. ate. (Somewhere I heard that when the dirty industrial sawmill site in Irkutsk finally closed, that the economy then switched to growing strawberries. True?)

These garden photos, like the forest trail above, like much of the wildlife, is still to be found both here and there and everywhere — at least in certain, sacrosanct places — throughout the northern hemisphere.

Eagles, ravens, cows, horses, pied wagtails – cute little gray/black/blue/white twittery birds.

Would that we could all fly above to view with our own eyes and heart our Earth from space, to see and feel the profundity of this living, breathing, conscious Being and her immersion in the divine cosmos that we all share; would that we re-learn to pay close, conscious attention, and re-member our common roots.

May each of us open the floodgates; may each of us sense her immense vitality coursing through our veins.




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Siberia: Lake Baikal, via hastily improvised Plan B that worked perfectly! Shaman ceremony, visits with shaman and Buddhist monk, “methane spring”

Note: This series is archived here.

Mongolia Siberia, 2017

So. We headed out of Ulan Ude, hauling our sleeping and eating gear, expecting to trek in a few miles to a campsite on Lake Baikal. Drove a few hours and then turned off on the dirt road that led to the trail. The campsite was waiting, prepared for us. We were eager to not only get a glimpse of this enormous famous lake, but to dwell on its wild shores for two nights and parts of three days.

Then, oops! The road in is closed, due to a fire ahead, so we are told by some officials who are standing there preventing our passage. Lots of discussion in Russian ensued, with Erjen and guides Rinchin and Sasha taking part. Things got heated, then disgusted. Somebody whispered to me that the officials wanted us to bribe them, some kind of exorbitant price per person. Thanks anyway, forget it!

Meanwhile, the rest of us were standing in or near the beautiful, clear little stream, cooling off on this hot day.

Erjen, Sasha, Rinchin, and Bill (our American guide) held their own discussion. The rest of us could just imagine what took place there. Then I noticed Erjen, her broad Mongolian face composed, walk over to the stream, stand on its shore, and very deliberately begin scooping water to wash her face. It’s as if she was internally preparing to go from Plan A to Plan B, only what was Plan B? Did she know?

Pile back in the van. Yes, Plan B did exist, was just hastily put together by the side of the dirt road. We would travel another hour or two along the east side of Baikal, and then “Sasha knows of a possible village where there is a possible boat to take us to the campsite.”  Oh my. The two “possible”s in Erjen’s statement really struck home. No wonder she was keeping her face composed.

Well, it all worked out. The possible village was actual, and the captain of the boat turned out to be someone that Erjen had already met somewhere along the line. To me this sweet, handsome man looked and acted like a ship captain right out of central casting.

All that is how I remember the initial scenes from our Lake Baikal camp adventure. Here is J.K.s version, probably more accurate, since she took notes right away.

Saturday 7/1

Drove to Baikal, but when we start to close in, we are stopped by the cops. No entry because of the forest fire – trees are down – and on top of that they planned to charge each and every one of us $5000 rubles for being in the wrong place. But Sasha and Rinchin are indignant. How in hell could we have known? There were no signs and besides they called ahead and there was no warning not to go this way. The cops are ok, they aren’t really going to make us pay, but we have to back out and find another way. Our ride [for our food; we would walk — A.K.] is waiting for us on the other side, and we can’t reach him. Later we learn he had waited 5 hours and finally gave up and went to the campsite on Baikal where we’d been aiming for. We go to a village and what do you know? It’s where Sasha’s family lives. We meet Yuri and Kamur, his sons, playing on the cold beach. Erjen is greeted yet again warmly, and realizes that the man who is greeting her is an old friend. Surprise.

Vodka, puzzles – “a bear hung himself on a cliff; what is it?” – indeed! Never did give us the answer to that one, Erjen. She twinkles, secretly smiles at our confusion. We get a boat ride; it takes an hour to ferry each set of passengers over and return for more. We let the first crew cross, the captain is friendly, I think it’s the same guy who is Erjen’s old friend.

While they ride the waves we feast on bread, cheese, tomatoes by a warm fire. Then we’re on the next boat, or the one after that, I forget. The boatman only has room for one passenger (this is Erjen again, posing riddles), and he has to transport the wolf, the goat and the cabbage to the other side. How will he do that? So Ann and Erjen and Bill and I finally arrive at the camp, having not eaten one another en route. Again, we each find where we will lay our heads. I am in a bungalow with Lisa and Carl. It’s late, still light out. Dinner. Two dogs, a big sweetheart whose ears and tail are almost completely lopped off, Russian style, and little Uma, who’s frightened by my initial greeting – hopping and lunging at her. A lively young couple runs the place. Nice vibes. Ready to sleep, bottom bunk.

Sunday 7/2

Baikal dreams upon awakening. We eat breakfast, wear our head coverings and skirts. Menstruating women stay behind. The rest of us walk along the shore. Here’s Buyan [who will transform into our shaman — A.K.] and his partner in this work, Sochar. Buyan in everyday is a bank manager.

And to me, feels very nice and “ordinary.” Mild mannered. Not in your wildest dreams would you pick him out for a “shaman”!  Sochar is a professional musician; he has assisted Buyan for ten years.

Now they have prepared the space at the edge of Baikal. Four fires burning in the cardinal directions. An altar cloth and bowls. A bottle of spirits (vodka) and here’s mare’s milk.

Buyan is immense, powerful. He is in silken robes, a divine presence. He kneels facing the lake. He will call the black water spirits in the east to come to the white water spirits in the west. He is singing, drumming and striking the drum toward his own face. He changes. He calls for nourishment. Bill, get over here. Feed him. Then Buyan becomes a little child spirit – he mews, murmurs, babbles. How many beings are inside?

All the while Buyan is beating powerfully on the drum, waving it back and forth, kneeling on the sand, his upper body stretching, hunching, twisting strenuously as each internal voice, each of the Spirits of Lake Baikal, make themselves known. The effect on all of us, lined up in a row sitting on a log in back of him, is electric, galvanic, utterly mesmerizing. We are clearly in the presence of beings entirely other than our usual 3D world.

Suddenly in my own quiet I hear Erjen call my name – JK, come over here. I kneel next to him. He says, “closer” – or at least Erjen tells me so. [Erjen is our continuous translator from both Russian and Mongolian. — A.K.] Closer and closer. Suchar’s hand on his back from the left. Me on the right. I am bent down to the sand, I am shaking. Do you all see this? I am outside myself and inside at the same time, wondering at this trembling going on. Then I sit up and face him and as with the others, he spits burning vodka and milk into my face, into my eyes. Then he uses the whip. Don’t take the load of others into yourself, that’s my teaching. So compassionate, says Erjen. I am confused. Compassionate, me? I wonder. A week or so later I realize. It’s the tormented captive eagles, it’s their pain he has found living in me. Yes, I took that on. Harder by far for me to identify with my own species. The song of the four elements. Ann is wearing the blue scarf. It is something you wear for the dead. She is asked to take it off.

Wow! I had no idea! I had gifted my original scarf at another ceremony, and so decided to wear the blue scarf that each of us had received from the shaman at the Ceremony of Mare’s Milk in Mongolia instead. [Women are to to wear both scarves and long skirts in the presence of a shaman.]

Someone hands something over to the person on his left by passing his right hand over his left. That way is the way you hand something to the dead. We are all learning.

After my serious scarf faux pas, he then did not spit on me, but instead murmured that for me there are three points that are important, shaped as a triangle, indicating my third eye and two on the ground on either side.

Mascha is called in despite her being in moon time. She needed a healing, Buyan determined. Rather, the Spirit called for her. Strong ones for the Mongols. [Mascha is Erjen’s daughter. A.K.]

After the ceremony we are invited to do whatever it is we feel called to do. I have rose elixir gathered on Summer Solstice 2014 under a full moon by my dear Latah, the lovely witch who runs the little shop Flower Power. She has given me half to offer Baikal. I walk in the shallows and give her offering to the blessed lake.

. . . .

A few lake photos:

Monday 7/3

Drizzle, fog; I wake up, something about Irkutsk. I think it means this is the Irkut River that flows into Baikal.

Sasha made porridge of rice and milk and butter and jam

The shamans and elders leave in a dinghy to the mist where the boat, all ghostly, awaits them to ferry them to the next place.

Bayer-la, Bayer-te Buya

So now we wait our turn.

Time, free time. I go along the sand intending to collect water for Latah. Bill and Marc are in the sun. Bill strips off his clothes – jumps in – Marc next. OK, my turn. It’s glorious. Cold and bracing and I’m naked in Siberia. Here come the rest of our group. We go to the point and see the nirpa, the black/white freshwater seals lazing on rocks in the distance. The only ones of their kind on planet Earth.

OK, here’s the dinghy again, hop on and then the boat takes us to shore somewhere. I hitch a ride on the jeep, hanging on the outside like that Neapolitan cop. Whee. Back in the van and we get back to Ulan Ude, one of the major metropolises of Siberia. We flop into our rooms and await the next thing, i.e. dinner. Nothing … hours go by …. We start to stir. Where the hell is everybody? They’re in the Irish bar. There’s a mutiny brewing here. OK, a late dinner and feathers soothed. We eat expensively and vengefully.

I think it was the next day — more and more the entire experience becomes suspended in the dreamtime — when we visited another shaman, one who lived in a small village along the highway — here is the hut the villagers built for him.


This man felt very humble and kind, and though he wore a blue silk robe and a mirror, was mostly just a human being, sitting behind a tiny desk, with stringed instruments on the wall. From him, and from others in Mongolia, we learned that a shaman is often chosen after a very difficult early life. Somehow, only as they agree to take on shaman duties do they heal. That was the case for this man; he used to be a meat seller, and initially tried to refuse the call. Now his shamanic gift is to heal individuals.

As I recall, on the same day, we also went down the same road to another village where we visited for many hours with Lama Norbu, a Buddhist monk, who is busy renovating an old, neglected Buddhist temple there.

He is the warmest man. They have just started to raise the building – what is that word again? The Stupa. It is moved from the Sayan Mountains.

His teacher taught the 14th Dalai Lama. There is a place in the mountains with a cave, and they studied together inside. The Sayan are to the West, Altai to the East.

Sayan mountains.

Sayan is the eyebrow and Baikal the eye. There is another lake in Mongolia, and that is the other eye. The stupa is the third eye.

We are at the northern gate of Shambala. The old inhabitants were the Tyuka, the original people from whom arose the Buriyati. Tuva is the southern gate. Some of them are still here. There is so much passion generated here that the Mongols went west, after the Huns. And east and south and became the Navajo (and Apache). The immense energy of this place made these nomads move, and move far.

When Lama Norbu’s grandmother fled the Communists with her family she was shot through her back and the bullet went through her right nipple. She went on to have many children – so don’t worry!

Bill says that the Buddhists here (the yellow Buddhists) honor and share shamanic practice and wisdom. This is the only place where that happens; elsewhere the Buddhists suppressed the shamans.

After our long talk with the monk, we posed for the only group photos of the entire journey. Lama Norbu is in the back with red top hat. I’m in front, kneeling, on the left, J.K. is in back of me, long brown hair.

And just to top off this day, we stayed in the same village, but further in from the main road, where there is an ancient “steam bath” — no! methane spring! geez! — that draws people from near and far.  While this experience may sound innocuous, it is anything but. One enters the dimly lit room – foggy, odiferous, hot liquid (part water part methane?) and slimy stones underfoot, hissing black pipes, and Russians standing under them all around the central column with whatever the liquid is beating on their backs — at one’s peril. I loved it. J.K. did not!

It’s night. We go to the methane springs. Oh jesus. Steam punk in dim sickly light. On the women’s side a little old gnome to my right. To my left a woman finishing up and washing her feet off. I try to get under the shower and she snaps something at me. I move away. Stones underneath, hard to walk, the circle of jets around the pipes all hissing and slime everywhere. We had to walk down a plank into this 9th Circle of Hell. One of the rails sink right into the pebbles. You cannot maneuver around it without hurting yourself. I have just told Lama Norbu that I am trying to stop fracking. But this is natural, I’m told. So what? So what?





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Siberia: Blessed by an encounter with “the spirit of the place”

This series is archived here:

Siberia/Mongolia, 2017


It was one of those days, like they all were, when we on this magical mystery tour basically had no idea what would come next. We were “along for the ride,” and what a ride it was! In our small luxury bus with plenty of room, rolling along a major Siberian highway (comparable to a paved country road in the  U.S.) somewhere out on the Siberian Steppes. Our Mongolian/Siberian guide Erjen was, as usual, very present and full — of what? We didn’t really know. But we trusted her, totally.

About two hours out of Ulan Ude the bus veered off onto a narrow gravel road. I’ve told most of the story of that day before, in my very first post of this series —


— so you might want to reread it before reading this. I focused there on the life/death springs, the Bronze Age gravesite area, the Genghis Khan ridge ambush, the lunch, and a tiny bit of the “portal” story. In this post, I will flesh in that final portal piece, for to tell the long version of this tale puts me right back there, just as when I have managed to tell it in person, two or three times since returning home. In fact, this tale felt like the pinnacle for me personally, of our time in this vast land which indigenous peoples have long called home and which speaks to them on a daily basis, those who still know how to listen. So here’s where the “shamanic” part of this tale begins.

Even though I have long been familiar with Native American reverence for and communion with Mother Earth, and even though I have been to “portals” elsewhere — for example, in Egypt (a tiny Egyptian temple dedicated to the goddess Sekhmet) and in Peru (a portal in a stone wall on Lake Titicaca), and indeed, even though I lived for 20 years in the Tetons, said by some to be a vortex portal for the Ascended Masters, I have only rarely been personally singled out for attention at or in one of these portals.

So, to begin.

After lunch, shown here with Karl, one of our members, actually checking his cell phone (he was the only one with the capacity to do so; the rest of us had left them behind for the duration of our magical mystery tour) — and BTW, that’s J.K. my roommate, sitting on the end of the bench in the middle.

Erjen reminded us that there was a portal ahead, if we wanted to take the path up. Offhand, she also said there were two more portals, but much higher up; she had never been there. I took it to mean that she didn’t expect us to go up there, either!

So most of started trudging uphill, quite steep at this point, in the little canyon that sliced back from the high rocky ridgeline we had been following all morning. Though I didn’t really process the feeling at that time, looking back on that day I noticed, about 20 feet below the large rock that Erjen said was the first portal, that I had just moved through an energetic curtain of some kind, that beyond this point, it was if “different laws apply here.” But as I said, that’s in hindsight, and colored by what happened next.

Most of us did manage to get to this portal.

From J.K.’s notes, talking about her experience:

And now the energy portals. A very long climb and are we there yet? No, no, and no. At long last I make it to the great stone and I lay at its side. Bill is completely one with the slab. Lois is embracing it. Gladys, Marc, Lisa and Carl keep going. Rinchin takes Ann to the pinnacle. What a couple of pairs of lungs and legs on those two, I wish oh I wish I could have done that.

What she is referring to is the following, some of which I’ve already told, but not in as much detail. The climax to this story, however, is utterly new, and frankly, it has changed my life forever.

Okay. I’m at the first portal with the others. But feeling restless. I want to continue up, to the ridge I figure, a few hundred feet more. I begin the trudge. A few minutes go by. Then I hear someone following along behind. Who? I glance back. It’s one of our Mongolian guides. Then came a strange sensation, of fear, female fear. I don’t know this person. These guides just joined our entourage what was it, the evening before? I’m highly aware of my “fear,” how it stems back to my mother, her fear, the fear in my female line, the forever female fear of overpowering males.

The Mongolian then comes to my side, and cuts in front of me. Now I see his entire, long-legged form. Oh! It’s Rinchin! My fear subsides. While Rinchin may look like an iconic 14th century Mongolian warrior, his kind, gentle nature has already communicated to all of us, when he helped two of our more senior female members down the hill from Genghis Khan’s ambush overlook.

Okay! I follow him up, cutting through saplings and over downed logs as we near the ridge. Until, here we are, on a gentle, rounded north/south slope between two tall outcroppings.

I thank Rinchin effusively for accompanying me on this trek. Though he doesn’t speak English, I make my gratitude obvious with smiles and hand movements.

Then he pantomimes a message that he knows I will understand: Pointing to his own heart, and then to my heart, he  waves his head and hands up, up. “You (pointing) and me (pointing) go up!”

Oops! Really?

I’ve never been a rock climber, even when I lived in the Tetons. Though I relish long uphill treks, I’ve never felt comfortable testing my physical prowess that way. So his invitation felt, to say the least, distinctly uncomfortable! Especially now, when I’m 74 years old. I did not learn when young what my body was capable of in this arena, and I want to start now? It felt foolish. But he felt insistent. And my curiosity was, of course, immense, intense.

So I began to follow him, up, over rocks, along tiny trails with abysses below, on and on, following as he climbed, like a goat, ahead. At one point we came to a place where in order to continue, I would have to leap from one giant boulder to another, with an abyss inbetween. He had already jumped to the other side, reaching his hand to me. NO!

He leaps back across, then straddles both boulders, patting his knee, which he wants me to use to step  from one giant rock to another. What, land and balance my rickety 130 pounds on one foot on his one knee? Even if I had had the nerve to do it, that felt foolhardy. He looks at me. And then, all of a sudden this Mongol warrior who can’t speak English says, “It’s just fear!”

Okay, says my 74 year old body that has never leaped large boulders with abysses between them, fear it may be, but it’s also knowing my own physical limits. I just shook my head strongly, NO.

Okay. He leapt back onto my side, commanded, authoritatively, “Wait. WAIT!” Apparently concerned that I wouldn’t. I said okay, and hunkered down. He was gone about five minutes, scouting out another route, then returned to get me.

We kept going, up and up, exhilarating, fun, and terrifying. Here are a few shots from up there, where I had never been before, and certainly didn’t expect to find myself that day or any day, ever!

Finally, we reached a boulder with a small round hole. I took a pic (and have cut Rinchin’s face out of it, as he doesn’t want to be recognized).

Can’t remember if he said this was one of the portals we were on the quest of. In any case, he indicated that it was important for some reason.

Soon we reached an area (I forgot to take a pic), that he said was the second highest portal. A little flat place nestled into the giant rocks, about six feet square, with say, three foot rock walls on the side that looked south.

Okay. Keep going. Five minutes more, none of it difficult, and we approached the final, highest, summit portal. Again, it felt like a room, flat, but much larger, with a  typical Mongolian/Siberian altar in the middle with flags.

This portal doesn’t feel all that astonishing unless you look to the top left of this photo, to realize how high up it is. Clearly, it is a place of pilgrimage for native inhabitants.

We approached the altar, Rinchin gave me a coin, we both offered them to the spirit of the place, and then backed up to one of the walls to sit in meditation for a few minutes.

Okay, done. Mission accomplished! I thought. I was ready to go. But no. On the way down is when the absolutely astonishing thing happened, the one that I have yet to mention in this series.

We had just completed our journey out of the high summit rocks, and were entering the forest on the ridgeline, when Rinchin looked at me, seemingly stunned, and then pointed downhill. “Look! Animal! And it looked at YOU!”

What? My eyes shot to where he was pointing. An animal about the size and color of a badger was scurrying downhill for cover. “Badger?” I asked. “Are there badgers in Siberia?” Rinchin looked at me, seemingly puzzled, perplexed, even a bit disappointed. Though his response didn’t register at the time, so intent was I on finding out the name of the animal, so instantly triggered did my left brain become after this out of time and space right brain experience in the high portals, but now, in hindsight I realize that he thought I was some sort of foolish American idiot. And, I would say now, how true!

On the ridge we enjoyed a long hug before proceeding down to join the others. At the bottom, I told Marc, who is an ecologist and happened to be carrying a book that identifies the wild animals of Siberia, about the animal Rinchin pointed out to me. Badger? I asked? I didn’t see the front, but the tail, somehow, seemed different. Bushier. We pored over the book for quite awhile. And, given that my immediate thought was that it had been a badger, I also wondered what that meant, symbolically. On our way out, one of our tour group, who happened to bring along Bear and Co’s Medicine Cards book, hearing me discuss the animal with Marc, handed it to me. Wow! I’ve got that book here at home, but certainly didn’t expect to be handed it on a bus on the Siberian steppes.

Here’s what it says: Badger signifies AGGRESSION! I think back today to the essay I posted recently detailing my own decidedly unconventional and persistent healing journey when I read this paragraph: “Badger medicine may point to the aggressive healer who will have the courage to use unconventional means to exact a cure.”

About 25 years ago, I had an encounter in the Tetons with badger on two successive days. I had walked the trail from our yurt park in Kelly to the warm spring a little more than a mile north. At the end of the trail, just as I was about to cross the road, a badger appeared from his hole, sat up on his hind legs and stared at me. Then again, the very next day, on the same walk, he did it again. So I had been familiar with badger from before, and with its symbolic meaning, though if it was a badger that had, according to Rinchin, “looked at” me, then at this point in my life I assume I need to be reminded to be more “aggressive,” to never give up, whatever my goals. Just what that goal is became more and more clear as the trip wore on;  I was finally able to give it voice at the very end. I’ve already spoken of it in previous posts, and will do so again here.

But in any case, badger or not badger, the next thing that happened really threw me for a loop. Erjen had looked at me puzzled the night before when I was going on and on about possibly seeing a badger. Looked at me as if, I would say now, she too thought I was an American tourist idiot! It turns out that Rinchin told her what happened on our way down, so she was familiar with the story, and perplexed by my response. Huh? None of that registered with this American tourist, who had immediately flipped into left brain after that encounter, trying to “figure it out.”

The next morning, seeing that I was still in a dither about badger, Erjen came up to me, and said, quietly: “About that ‘badger.’ You need to know that this was no ordinary animal. This was the spirit of the place manifesting to YOU.” She paused. “This is very rare.”

So that’s the fuller story of my journey with Rinchin to the high portal. I was blessed with a personal encounter with the spirit of the place. And I will never forget it. Had the trip ended there, I would have been okay. This was the reason I had been guided internally to go to Siberia/Mongolia.

So what does it mean? Now, with a bit more hindsight, I tend to look at what happened on that trek down from the portal with both left and right brains. With left brain I name what the spirit animal seemed to have appeared as, and note that this quality, of relentless aggression to reach a goal, is something that I have in spades, when I reach down within myself to grab it. In the last few years I have focused otherwise, on cultivating what I would call “lightness of being,” the other inherent quality within my Sagittarian self — to move in a light-hearted way through life, filled with joy, infecting those around me with that energy. I welcome this change.

The aggression of badger is just so easily tipped into fury, anger, control, all of which I manifested relentlessly during my “violent peace activist” days, back in the ’80s, when I had the encounters with badger in the Tetons. Then, badger was nudging me to tone it down. Now badger nudges me to ramp it up!  I sense that I am meant to recover badger in myself, integrate that warrior energy with lightheartedness, so that I can move both subtly and relentlessly towards my goal, which is to recognize that portals exist everywhere; that wherever we stand, if we can move into awareness of the alive, intelligent, wise being under our feet, we can then commune with her, fill ourselves with her massive power, and open a new “portal,” to the SPIRIT OF THE PLACE. That is indeed, what we are doing here in Green Acres Village, and in a cover article for the next Permaculture Design magazine, I will demonstrate our experience of that evolutionary, multidimensional process under the theme of “Thresholds.”

I told my GAV partner Rebecca about this idea, that portals (or vortexes) are, or can be, everywhere on Earth, not just in “special places,” — if we but open them and open to them; she referred me to a podcast she had just listened to, which talked about that very thing. (From about minute 8 on.) Another synchronicity! YES!





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Siberia/Mongolia Interlude: Between the first 12 posts and the final 3 posts

It’s now been 44 days since I published the 12th post of the Mongolia/Siberia series, and had promised to do a few more. Specifically, on Shamanism. For that is what most people who learn of my travels to this little known (for us westerners) part of the world ask about. So I will do two more posts on that aspect of our journey, as well as another post reporting on our final day — and picnic — with a visit to an extraordinary little art museum, on the shores of Lake Baikal.

The first post on Shamanism (14th of this series) will focus on a more extensive recounting of my trek, with a Siberian guide, to a remote portal high on a mountain ridge on the Siberian steppes. 

The second post on Shamanism (15th of this series) will include my roommate J.K.’s notes (and my) recounting of an incredible  ceremony during our two night stay on the eastern shore of Lake Baikal. Plus our brief, poignant meeting with a young shaman in a village, and as well, our four hour meeting with a Buddhist monk in another village nearby. We took a group picture there, the only one that our Siberian/Mongolian guide Erjen has allowed me to use.

Finally, the third and final post (16th), recounting, in photos, our long trek downhill to the southwestern shore of Lake Baikal on our final day in Siberia, includes not just our memorable outdoor meal, but the remarkable art of Nicholas Roerich.

All in all, this will make 16 posts on my journey to Siberia/Mongolia, and while the entire experience still conjures up enormous feeling inside me, while it altered me forever and ever, I’ve also had a number of other strong interludes since, including a weeklong trip to Alaska, the wild parts of which remind me very much of Siberia.

This morning, I decided to review my entire “corpus” of the Siberia/Mongolia, 2017 journey in order to prepare myself to re-enter the flow of this extraordinary experience, so that I may complete what I promised above.

BTW: When I told housemate Dan about this project, he asked, “Why, have people been asking for that?” As usual, that kind of question perplexed me. I don’t write to please others. And besides, as I told him, I follow Gertrude Stein’s admonition: “I write for myself and one other stranger.” If there is one person for whom these three new pieces are welcome, I will be happy! And even if there aren’t, or if I never know, still, what counts for me is that I do what I say I’m going to do. It’s my own sense of completion that matters to me. Always was, always will be!



More tomorrow.

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On the 16th Anniversary of 9/11, relativity reigns.

Have you noticed? On this 16th anniversary of 9/11, what had been the iconic ugly signature of the new millennium registers this year like a mere blip on the collective radar?

Yes. Relativity reigns. The horrors of 9/11, 16 years ago today, seem to fade into the oblivion left by current events: in the U.S. alone, most western states engulfed in flames, and meanwhile, the south and southeast ravaged by hurricanes Harvey and Irma, with Jose coming right up. Can any human mind grasp the enormity of what is happening? Especially when you factor in the likelihood that all these events are either designed or steered and amped up via weather wars — by what we have learned since 9/11 to call “The Powers That Be,” and in the last year, “The Deep State.”

Today, on my morning walk with puppy Shadow, I sensed us ploughing through thick chemicalized air. Up above, the misty remains of merged parallel chemtrails. Idle thought: is this apparent ramp up of poisoned skies due to Irma, the remains of which reach Indiana tomorrow? If so, what is, or are, the “reasons.”

On the other hand, who cares what the “reasons” are. I just want them to stop it. NOW. Geez! I just had a new nephew born; will Mathew Rainier and the other beautiful brave beings whose souls chose to enter this beleagured Earth now be allowed to grow up?

Walking along, I think of the quarrel within the UFO community about the dispositions of our extraterrestrial (and/or interdimensional) visitors? Are all aliens good? All evil? Some good, some evil? Arguments can be made for all three possibilities. I prefer to see the situation in our skies as just like here on earth. There are good folks and bad folks, and the good folks far outweigh the bad ones; however, since we good ones tend to think most people are like us, good, we cannot even conceive of the kinds of evil apparently being perpetrated upon us by the far fewer number of bad ones. The 99% vs. the 1%. Aha! “9/11” includes the same numbers: “9” signature of endings, and “1” signature of new beginnings.

Yes, 9/11 today! Its trauma-incucing memory shrouded over by chemtrails, designer hurricanes and designer droughts.

Here’s some background:

Chemtrails and Human GeoEngineering

None of this negates the idea that yes, climate change is also occurring, and solar flares, etc., and that some climate change most likely is due to human industrial activity. However, let’s face it. It does appear that “they” do want to ramp up the ongoing environmental devastation, despite that it affects them too, does it not? Well not, they think, if they can escape the planet first, or go underground. Both possibilities, but unlikely, given the shortened time-spans of the unfolding disasters.

Remember, please: “dis-aster” means “to turn away from the stars.” Even though we in the U.S. were astonished by the 8/21 Great American Total Eclipse, our brief numinous glimpse of this extraordinary event in the heavens and our concomittant sudden remembrance of earth’s connection to the heavens, of our own tiny human participation in the unity of all creation — was immediately curtailed by millions of damn screens, pulled out instantly, from all those pockets, to photograph the “scene.”

I think back to 9/11, and how, after the phone call that told me to turn on the TV, and then I did, and witnessed my first of many replays of the first tower being hit, my immediate, instantaneous intuition was INSIDE JOB. To me there was no question. Some faction within our own government had either done that, or made sure that it got done.

All the flag-waving that followed left me with a sick feeling. Nothing like ramping up patriotism to follow a gigantic false flag that, let’s face it, remains seared in memory like nothing else except the Kennedy assasination back in 1963. For of course, we elders also witnessed the back of JFK’s head being blown off.

Let’s factor in the absurdity of official explanations for both 9/11 and the JFK assasination. I’ve come to the conclusion that not only were we meant to witness the atrocities, we were also meant to quickly or eventually realize that the official explanations are absurd. “But how could that be? Would our government lie to us? No No No. Can’t be.” Thus do we grow confused. A sense of hopelessness, futility steals over us, robs our energy.  Both sheer horror and official false facts work to keep us dumbed down, numb, oblivious, and hopefully, forever distracted by all our addictions as well as the sheer exigencies of trying to “make a (minimum wage) living” in a perverted world.

Six weeks after 9/11, when they rolled out the hefty (two feet thick? I think I remember reading that somewhere) Patriot Act, which had been sitting on a shelf waiting for its false flag moment, I saw what was coming next. Universal surveillance, increasingly centralized police state, and, of course, to keep the already militarized economy going, a newly named, endless, ongoing “War on Terror.”

One wonders, is this war about to cease? Because, let’s face it, given the scale of the internal damage from the hurricanes (and don’t forget the fires), it looks like we can’t afford to even rebuild.

America Can’t Afford to Rebuild

Meanwhile, a ray of new possibility arises in the east. See:

We are All 911 Victims Now

Millions the world over have suffered from the wars, terrorism and curtailment of liberty that have formed central elements of American foreign and domestic policy since 9/11. One Belt–One Road which was launched in 2013, by contrast, offers the world an escape route from the ominous cloud of post-9/11 American hegemony.

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