Mar 30, 2012

Karen Armstrong on Religion as Unknowing

In this wonderful lecture, Karen Armstrong tackles the big questions and determines that there are no answers -- not if you're doing it right. As I wrote yesterday, embracing unknowing is a key to dismantling oppressive hierarchy and abuses of power. And willingness to embrace mystery is the pathway to God.

What is God? The former nun recalls the answer she learnt in catechism: "God is the supreme spirit who alone exists of himself and is infinite in all perfections." That answer, while far too heady for an eight year old, is still too limiting to be meaningful. Instead Armstrong turns to the teachings of Maimonides, Avicenna, and Thomas Aquinas whose thoughts on the matter she paraphrases.

God is not the supreme spirit. God is not the supreme being. God is not a being at all. God is being itself.

What is religion? Again, there is no simple answer according to Armstrong. Religious experience shouldn't be definable. It should defy explanation.

In the pre-modern world, good theology was meant to tip you into a moment of transcendence and silence where you realized that you'd gone beyond the reach of words and concepts. Because our minds are tuned to transcendence.

In the modern world, she argues, we've turned religion into a "head trip" rather than the experience of living myth and mystery. Scripture can't be read as literal truth. But myth does not mean falsehood. It is, she says, "more than history." When we enact myth in ritual and ceremony we internalize the power of those myths and are fundamentally changed by them.

Armstrong's lecture was part of a program on the compassion initiative she spearheaded in 2009. I'll be the first to admit that I when I first learned of the Charter for Compassion I thought the idea might be too abstract to have any practical impact. But according to Armstrong the project has exceeded expectations in numerous arenas around the globe.

One of my personal favorites is the prison reform project that trains prison officers to treat inmates with more respect and care. When it was put into practice in a jail in Washington State, the goal was to decrease violence by 2.5 percent; in fact the project was so successful that violence was decreased by 100 percent. Now the creators are evaluating just what the federal government could save by implementing this program across the United States. Additionally, Louisville Kentucky and Berkeley California are just two of the cities exploring restorative justice programs as part of their cities' compassionate programs.

Among our partners are both scientific and medical researchers. Stanford University's Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education is conducting research into mapping compassion in the brain and developing compassion training programs; for adults. In Holland, an impassioned group of medical students have written a charter focused on medical ethics and compassion in healthcare. They are working to make compassion training a required part of the medical school curriculum.

We are connected by the Internet in a fashion as never before. To take advantage of that opportunity we have launched a new website. It will provide practical tools and a meeting place for people from all over the world who are interested in creating and sustaining a more compassionate world. If we all became active upholders of the Golden Rule in our daily lives, in our political lives, in our cities, we could combat the voices the extremisms and hatred that are tearing us apart and endangering us all. We could create a better, more just, more respectful society and world. We can do it and we must do it.

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Mar 29, 2012

Time Monk Clif High on Release Language Waves

According to Clif High we are, indeed, in a prolonged release language period as predicted. Here he characterizes that language as being indicative of the breakdown of the societal hierarchy. This little lecture is long on pontification and short on specifics in terms as to how these changes are showing up in the linguistic data. However, it's an interesting exercise and I certainly would like to believe it's true that this is what's occurring. If you had asked me in the 80s and 90s what I thought the near future held, you would have heard me say that it would be the breakdown of the patriarchal, hierarchical structure and the reemergence of more matriarchal patterns. There were certain astrological precursors which I was following in the 90s, specifically a grand cross in 1999 that I was observing very closely -- and experientially -- that was predicted by some astrologers as initiating the breakdown of the most entrenched and hidebound institutions. (Something about how it impacted Taurus. Bear with me. I'm not an astrologer.) Anyway, that is precisely what occurred throughout the aughts, and began in earnest following 9/11. So, according to High, we've reached a certain threshold or critical mass point in this process and that is what the release language is all about. And, as discussed, he previously pointed to the Kony 2012 phenomenon as an indicator.

There is much that jibes with my perceptions in this particular rumination of High's, which is certainly not always the case. I do not buy into his paranoid fear of Masons and the like, but then I never do.

I am absolutely with him on the importance of "unknowing." I've been been pushing for a Socratic "I know that I don't know" model for a very long time. I absolutely agree with him that the desire for certitude leads ultimately to abuses of power. This is something I contemplated a great deal when I was blogging the James Ray sweat lodge trial and what High posits as the dangers of cults of personality was exemplified about perfectly in that tragedy.

"Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer."

~ Rainer Maria Rilke, from Letters to a Young Poet

High also talks about how trauma is used by the "powers that be" as a tool of manipulation. There is definitely some truth in this. How much of it is deliberate, I can't say. But the effects of trauma cause enmeshment at the microcosmic and macrocosmic levels. And the emotional wounds of unhealed trauma make people much easier to exploit by those who might be inclined to exploit them -- like, say, James Arthur Ray.

Coincidentally, Christina Pratt's most recent broadcast addressed the issue of healing trauma. It is a brilliant, must-hear show on how unhealed trauma weakens us as individuals and how ill-equipped the western model is to deal with it, as compared to indigenous cultures. So many of us are limping through life because of trauma that was  not well handled at the point of origin and most of our accepted therapeutic models say straight-out that things like PTSD and sex-abuse issues are difficult to treat and can never be completely healed -- a position Pratt dismisses as simply unacceptable.

One thing I have yet to see addressed by High -- perhaps I've missed it -- is any explanation of the data gap which was predicted to hit the hard wall on March 15. I will say this though. I can't help noticing that High's servers were down during this period due to his associate "Igor" moving or something. He's been gradually getting his spiders going again as demonstrated in these little "wujo" lectures. So there certainly was a gap in his gathering of data this month. How that relates to the increasing holes over the coming months I can't say. High not running his spiders for whatever reason was always one possible explanation for the data gap. But it could also turn out to be a number of different things and I wouldn't rule out solar flares or other causes as we move forward. I, for one, am glad we still have the Internet, writ large, but I'm also not willing to get too comfortable on that score.

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Mar 26, 2012

Earthquakes and Earth Weirdness

The earth seems to be shaking, rattling, and rolling in both explained an unexplained ways with increasing frequency. A week of major earthquakes -- Mexico (7.4), Chile (7.1), Fiji (5.1), Japan (5.2), Australia (5.6), Turkey (5.2), Russia (5.3) Indonesia (6.2) New Guinea (6.6), etc. -- while not thoroughly surprising in the wake of recent solar storms, is concerning all the same. If I lived in a seismic area, like say California, I'd be really on edge.

Stranger than the quakes are new reports of the metallic, rattling sounds that have been the subject of discussion for some time. Posted above is a Dreamland interview with Linda Moulton Howe who has a very detailed report on an off-the-charts sound experience in Wisconsin and something very similar in Georgia that preceded it. Howe interviewed city administrator Lisa Kuss who gave a very thorough rundown on everything that was not the cause of the extremely loud booming and banging noises that had rattled residents in their shoes. But after methodically discounting every possibility from earthquakes to water systems to mining to military activity, Kuss did a complete turnaround at a local meeting and blamed a 1.5 earthquake some 30 miles away. It is a laughable suggestion. But it sounds like the price tag for the research into the phenomenon was getting a tad high, which could explain the urgency to put the matter to rest.

I learned this morning that there was 3.1 quake not 40 miles from me last night. I felt and heard nothing. To put it another way, if a 1.5 quake could cause days of ongoing sounds like trains colliding, as one resident described it, the state of California would be unlivable for the continuous racket.

A typical day in California

At least for me, the matter remains without satisfactory explanation... kind of like the spate of dead birds which plummeted from the skies a little over a year ago. The final explanation offered on that one? Impact. With what? Who can say? Maybe the 1,000+ birds that all died at once in Arkansas did so after they flew into various things because they were so upset by fireworks, and that's official. No one had ever set off unlicensed fireworks in Arkansas before, I guess. And only in Arkansas are birds so freaked out by them. Other birds are pretty impervious to fireworks, hence the paucity of sudden bird deaths every other New Years Eve and Fourth of July. This stuff just insults my intelligence.

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Mar 22, 2012

Paul Levy on the Collective Shadow

I've referenced Tibetan Buddhist and healer Paul Levy before -- notably in my review of The Secret. Levy's essays are available on his site Awaken in the Dream and in his book The Madness of George W. Bush: A Reflection of our Collective Psychosis. In his newest book Wetiko, Levy continues to explore the projected shadow as a collective phenomenon and the Native American mythical embodiment of it known as wetiko to the Cree. Years ago, I watched a movie called Wendigo, another Algonquian name for the same phenomenon. It's a haunting film that brilliantly captures the sense of doom we experience at those times when life is turned upside down leaving us at the mercy of an unfolding fate that seems to have its own agenda. As Levy explains, we actually animate this darkness run amok from our suppressed shadow. The more in denial of our shadow we are, the more inevitably we will confront it as a seemingly alien entity in our reflective world.

One of the things that struck me in this Red Ice Radio interview is Levy's anecdote about a New Age bookstore that wanted him to appear but not talk about all that shadow stuff. They wanted it to be "positive." It put me in mind of another author who dared to write about the painful side of spiritual growth; Rabbi Yonassan Gershom who wrote about Holocaust reincarnates.  Said Gershom:

Then in 1984 I was invited to speak on Jewish mysticism at the annual Spiritual Frontiers Fellowship (SFF) retreat at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. SFF is an eclectic group of spiritually oriented people who are interested in psychic phenomena, and most believe in reincarnation. Here, I thought, would be a receptive audience for these case histories that I had been gathering. So I suggested "Cases of Holocaust Reincarnation" as my topic.

I was turned down flat. The SFF representative explained that the theme of the retreat would be "I Am the Light," and they wanted to focus on uplifting, positive material because that's what people expected. The Holocaust was just too heavy and depressing, and might upset people, even if I were talking about reincarnation. Couldn't I do something more inspiring, like a Sabbath liturgy?

This relentless focus on the upbeat and cheerful is not just naive. It's dangerous -- something I've written about ad nauseam, ad infinitum. And as Levy has been explaining brilliantly for years, it can unleash terrors beyond our conscious imagining.

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Mar 20, 2012

Reflections on the Vernal Equinox

First Robins of... um... February

This year I'm just finding the first day of spring a little weird. Mainly because we had no discernible winter and it's been spring for weeks. March has been marked by temps as high as the mid '80s, high humidity, and the need for air conditioning. The flowering trees in our neighborhood are in full bloom. My daughter has been running around in her summer clothes for weeks and merrily snapping pictures of flowers and birds.

As the cherry blossoms in the nation's capital are hitting a bizarrely early peak, school was closed in Flagstaff Arizona because of a blizzard that also closed parts of the interstate. Marine Corps friends of ours in the Southern California desert have also been having snow this week. Weird, weird, weird.

Hyacinth Blossoms ~ Early March

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Mar 19, 2012

Unholy Water: Atheists Get Religion in Florida

As I said here, when atheists started "de-baptizing" people, atheism has a become a religion.

It's finally happened. Atheism has become a religion. Let's see... a formalized group ritual utilizing symbolic objects to affect a transformational process. Yep. It's a religion.

And now we have a full on sectarian conflict in Polk County, Florida. It's literally a battle over symbolism and how that symbolism will shape a stretch of highway as an atheist group made a public display of washing away the anointing oil placed there by a local church.

"I find it absolutely ludicrous that the atheists who say they don't believe in God have to erase something that they don't believe in," [Associate Pastor Glen] Copple told

On that, I have to agree with the pastor. It strikes me as more than a little odd that atheists are tackling something head on that they consider to be imaginary. And that they're, once again, doing so in such a ritualized context.

The atheist group openly states that the "unanointing" of the highway was a publicity stunt meant to bring attention to a larger problem of religious intolerance in Polk County.

Palmer told CBS Tampa that the group’s major issue was with a billboard posted nearby by the Christian Churches of Polk County and PUP that boldly displays photos of Lakeland Mayor Gow Fields, Polk County School Board Superintendent Dr. Sherrie Nickell and Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

“If it were just some church blessing a road, that’s not a big deal – churches can do what they want,” Palmer told the station. “The point of [the demonstration] was to protest the co-mingling of church and state.”

It appears to be just the latest chapter in an ongoing struggle over religious (and non-religious) freedom that may have brought legal consequences for one local atheist.

An atheist in Central Florida filed suit in Federal District Court in Tampa on Friday, accusing the Polk County sheriff, an evangelical Christian, of harassing and unnecessarily arresting her as retaliation for not believing in God and for her efforts to keep prayer out of public meetings.

EllenBeth Wachs, the legal coordinator for the group Atheists of Florida, asked the court to prevent the sheriff, Grady Judd, from conducting any new investigations, arrests or complaints resulting from her “nonreligious, atheist viewpoint in the predominantly Christian-oriented Polk County, Fla.” The sheriff’s actions, including two arrests and searches of her house, violated her First Amendment rights and her right to due process, the suit states.

That the church had called in the angels with an anointing ceremony isn't something that I can terribly worked up over. Nor am I offended at their hope that those angels will protect the area from crime. A billboard featuring local officials as participants in a religious struggle with criminal behavior, however, is deeply concerning. As is any implication that non-Christians are a threat to the community.

PUP director Richard Geringswald told Bay News 9, that they were "praying for that entryway in to the city, that God would protect us from evildoers, mainly the drug crowd, that they would be dissuaded to come in to the county."

But Atheists of Florida found evidence on local pastor Frank Smith's blog that PUP's mission in placing the oil was to "ask God to have angels inspect every vehicle that travels into and out of this county if they will not submit to God's way of living, then the prayer is to have them incarcerated or removed from the county."

It's certainly a problem if that belief system is translating into direct action from public officials, as Florida atheists claim.

Unfortunately, that message seems to have been lost, for the most part, in the coverage of this latest atheistic exploration of religious expression. Calling it a "symbolic gesture" doesn't help... because that's what ritual is. What I find humorous about this whole thing is that atheists keep unwittingly demonstrating what a natural impulse to ritualistic behavior we humans have.

Atheists have even started erecting churches. At some point they may have to admit that human beings have an innate need to align ourselves with something greater. In some form or fashion, partnering with archetypes appears to be part of our nature. And cleansing a site with "unholy water" is rich with meaning, whether they mean it to be or not.

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Mar 15, 2012

Graham Hancock on Plant Teacher Ayahuasca

A typically excellent interview with the always informative Graham Hancock. He shares some of his personal experience with ayahuasca. He argues that there is nothing lazy, let alone recreational, about working with mind altering substances in a shamanic context. On the contrary, he explains. It's very "hard work" taking ayahuasca, looking at your life with the help of this brutally honest plant teacher, and integrating the lessons into your life. But he believes the rewards and life transforming results are well worth it.

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Mar 13, 2012

Time Monk Clif High: Kony 2012 is IT

"The power of social media is clearly demonstrated in the reception for a film about an African war criminal named Joseph Crony." ~ Geraldo Rivera (Did he misspeak or was that a Freudian slip?)

Clif High thinks the Kony 2012 video fulfills for the release language prediction for March onward.

Now, in the background, slowly, with only self sustaining word of mouth, on a human2human level, the KONY 2012 movie and campaign is moving so far past viral as to constitute a new definition of this as a planetary experience.

. . .

It is my thinking now, that sometime late this afternoon pacific coast north america time zone, the KONY 2012 movie will have been watched by that final human that will be required and the whole context of the planet will begin changing as the shift into release language dominates from this point forward. It will happen before your eyes, and though many will be too blind to see it for months, it will already be engaging some of us by this evening. 

This combinoric effect is what occurs when enough humans put enough intent into the same changes that context. In this case, the context is the common consensus reality in which the entrenched elite rule with their psycopathic minions.

On last night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart showed why High may be right. There is nothing funny about the Kony video or the LRA... except watching the mainstream media running to keep up with a massive trend that has completely blindsided them.

The difference between trends and fads is that trends are ground up and fads are top down. Kony 2012 is a trend. And I don't think I've ever seen the talking heads trailing a trend so badly or looking so gobsmacked. They sound even sillier than usual when they try to ape the lingo of the youngsters. They appear to be mystified. Or, as Jon Stewart put it,  "Mainly the media just seems annoyed."

This is not about the validity of the video itself and there is much to debate about the content. I'm not going to get into that. Use the google if you want. To borrow the pertinent phrase from the late, great Marshall MacLuhan, "The medium is the message." This is the most powerful demonstration yet of the power of social media. This time it is wrapping an idea around the globe without any help from political machines or chattering pundits.

Remember that social media also had a key role in the Arab Spring. And that could point to another possibility regarding the data gap. What did they do in Egypt when they saw how the internet enabled the protests? They shut it down. I don't like to think that the loss of internet is how the data gap plays out but it bears mentioning that one of the many things demonstrated by the Kony 2012 phenomenon is a threat to the top down social order. The top never cares for that.

Aside from the Kony thing, there has been a lot of release language and drama this month and I think we can all sort of pick our favorites. One that is sure to continue to be ignored by the Time Monks is the eruption over birth control. It's easy to dismiss something that looks from some perspectives like a typical, politically driven, tempest in a teapot. I'm not dismissing it for a very simple reason. It's threatening to upend the prevailing power dynamics. It's turning many conservative women against their own party. Rush Limbaugh, who with his ditto-heads spearheaded the modern conservative movement, lost all his advertisers and finally really jumped the shark. And the Catholic Church has hastened its death. This was another massive, self-inflicted wound for a very tone-deaf Church. But the ripple effects of this won't be recognized right away either because women's voices are routinely ignored until they can't be anymore. But make no mistake. They've awakened a sleeping giant and she's really mad.

"I don't find a problem with this. I think it's a positive thing. And I think we might look back on this week as the week when everything changed for bad guys around the world who could no longer hide." ~ Bill Maher

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Mar 5, 2012

The Freedom to Control Other People

Cardinal Timothy Dolan weighed in this weekend on the wholly manufactured debate over freedom of religion. This, if you'll recall, is the Rick Santorum endorsed version of "absolute" separation of church and state that would allow religious affiliated, but non-religious organizations such as hospitals and colleges, to deny birth control coverage under their insurance plans.

"We're not trying to impose our teachings on anybody," said Dolan in his 45-minute speech to a packed auditorium of about 1,000 people. "We're simply saying, don't impose your teaching upon us and make us do as a church what we find unconscionable to do."

The statement borders on the Orwellian. Of course they're imposing their teachings on people. They're imposing them on numerous students and employees -- many of whom aren't even Catholic -- by not allowing them to use their health benefits in a manner consistent with medical advise and their own conscience.

What I find most confounding about the religious leaders and congressmen demanding "religious freedom" to exempt employers from allowing coverage of birth control is that they seem incapable of seeing the irony. It seems perfectly reasonable to them to demand as their own freedom the right to control other people.

What Cardinal Dolan and others like him are engaged in is a battle over symbolism, not substance. No one is demanding that they do anything. Under President Obama's compromise, they're not even required to pay for birth control coverage. The insurer would have to pick it up. All that's happening is that people who are in some vague way under their auspices are doing something they don't approve of. You'd think they'd be used to that, considering that roughly 98% of Catholic women have used birth control at some time.

As Jon Stewart pointed out in a recent episode of the Daily Show, health insurance is part of an employee's salary. What difference does it make to the Catholic Church if employees use their benefits package or their paycheck to buy birth control? Or will the next move be to demand that no employee or student at any Catholic affiliated institution be allowed to use birth control at all?

Make no mistake. This is not a battle over religious freedom. If the Catholic Church and the GOP were so concerned about people not being compelled to pay into systems that go against their religious beliefs, they'd be fighting for the right of Quakers not to have their tax dollars used for military purposes. I think we all know how invested Rick Santorum, Darryl Issa, and Rush Limbaugh are in that particular issue.

The hue and cry being raised by some members of the Catholic church hierarchy and some opportunistic members of Congress over the Obama administration's requirement that employers provide contraception to their employees reminds me that their argument of religious freedom and how the evil federal government is stomping all over it applies to more than just pills and condoms.

I belong to a religious denomination that is adamantly opposed to war in any form and to the manufacture and sale of it. The Quakers were founded on this tenet, they have suffered for it, including torture, exile, and even death, yet they haven't changed their position in five hundred years. As a Quaker, I too am opposed to war and its trappings to the point that I registered as a conscientious objector in 1970. And yet my taxes go to the Treasury every year; taxes I am sure go to support the Department of Defense and our war machine.

No. This is not about religious freedom. Not when they so obviously cherry-pick what religious groups deserve special exemption from civic responsibility. This is about the freedom of women to own and operate their own bodies and just how uncomfortable that makes an awful lot of men -- be they celibate priests in a denomination that consistently makes women second-class citizens or a dirty old man like Rush Limbaugh who wants to compel college girls to record their sex lives for his entertainment.
"So Miss Fluke and the rest of you feminazis, here's the deal," he said. "If we are going to pay for your contraceptives and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch."

Limbaugh displayed an almost incalculable level of ignorance with a three-day tirade against female sexuality that has so far resulted in the loss of seven advertisers and a tortured apology, no doubt to stop the hemorrhaging. The factually challenged Limbaugh repeatedly asserted that his tax dollars were somehow paying for birth control activist Sandra Fluke to have sex. In fact, the Georgetown law student testified before Congress about her lesbian friend who lost an ovary after being denied coverage for medically necessary birth control pills because the Catholic run institution refuses to cover contraception. It's Georgetown students, though, who currently have to pay for the inadequate coverage as the college automatically bills students for their group medical plan. Yet, in Limbaugh's narcissistic mind, this translates to him somehow having to pay for Fluke to have "so much sex" she can't afford to buy her own contraception. Yes, Limbaugh is so ignorant on the issue of women's health, he seems to think women take birth control pills every time they have sex, and has failed to grok that it's a long-term prescription that has to be taken daily on a schedule.

One wonders how much sex Rush Limbaugh was having in the Dominican Republic, having taken illegally prescribed Viagra on his 2009 trip. Limbaugh, who was already under indictment for doctor shopping to feed a drug habit of a different nature, was caught upon his return with a prescription made out by a doctor to his own name to protect Limbaugh's privacy. One wonders who paid for that Viagra. No doubt that was covered by his insurance as most plans cover Viagra, including those offered by Catholic institutions.

Joked Limbaugh:

I had a great time in the Dominican Republic. Wish I could tell you about it.

Promiscuous sex is funny when men do it. (Limbaugh was traveling unaccompanied in a country known for its sexual tourism.) But when women use properly prescribed birth control -- for, in some cases, other medical needs -- they're "sluts." They're "prostitutes." They're "round heeled."

Limbaugh, as usual, gave voice to the uncontrollable id of the conservative movement. He gave the lie to all the grandstanding about religious freedom and made it clear that what it's always been about is aging males desperate to control women's bodies with all their mysterious and terrifying sexuality.

Repeatedly conflating the birth control issue with the politically safer territory of abortion rights, Republicans have railed against the evils of forcing churches to in any way endorse women owning their bodies outright. You have to marvel at the hypocrisy epitomized by a Catholic senator like David Vitter arguing against birth control when we all know he used it... with prostitutes.

Such double standards make it hard to read this as anything other than contempt for women and a desire to roll back the clock on our freedom. Effective birth control has been available for so long that many have forgotten what a dramatic change in the social order it facilitated. Before contraceptives like the pill, women's lives revolved around the potential for pregnancy to disrupt any other plan. And with all their mockery of birth control as health concern, these men broadcast their ignorance of the toll pregnancy and childbirth can take on a woman's body. They ignore the fact that it can kill us and that the more pregnancies a woman has the greater the odds that she'll suffer complications. The very vocal men at the forefront of this battle for "religious freedom" seem to still be longing for the halcyon days when women were either barefoot, pregnant Madonnas or so many disposable whores.

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Mar 3, 2012

Internet Shutdown and Other Time Monks Related Concerns

Web Bot Forum Roundtable Discussion of Data Gap

As discussed, this month is when the web bots are predicted to hit the hard wall of the "data gap," or "discontinuity." To be clear, Clif High does not pretend to know what causes the data gap. But reports going back to some of the earliest web bot runs have shown that in this time period, the ability of the web bots to gather data would start to drop off dramatically and, over the course of about a year, disappear. Jules from Web Bot Forum posted an overview here.

Since the early years of the webbots, Clif High has seen a discontinuity or data gap in the webbots long term forecasting. As we get closer, the discontinuity has come into clear view starting in March 2012 yet for all intense [sic] and purposes, the discontinuity still remains a mystery. During this period the data grows holes which make forecasting impossible. Forecasting correctly and incorrectly is one thing, but what could happen that makes the data impossible to forecast?

Data gap is also something of a misnomer, according to High, who has more recently said that the reemergence of a small amount of data gathering capability was actually forecast due to a programming error. What we're actually looking at is a data stoppage.

Sorry, no. You misunderstand. Data gap is a 'natural' phenomenon. The recurrance of data after 5/2013 is the processing artifact.

The gap effect has already started in modelspace and simply is totally complete by 6.2013.
Also do not know what causes the gap. But at least now we know it is not a gap so much as a winding down and stoppage So unknown effects now are gradually (over 2011 into 2013) causing the stoppage of data. This *may* be good news in the sense that this pattern *would* fit a degradation of the internet.

The hard wall of the data gap also appears to be accompanied by a seemingly infinite period of "release language." Interestingly, High now says that the release language will not be triggered by a specific event but actually seems to be organic.

I have been looking at the data gap with increasing concern as it's onset moves closer but the more I examine it, the more inscrutable it becomes. I do think, however, that whatever it is, it's fairly inevitable. In the years that I've been following the Time Monks work, I've found their accuracy on the big picture stuff to be fairly dazzling. And when they predict a period of release language, it always comes, accompanied by an event or a series of them. That the data gap correlates with a release language period such as we've never seen before makes me take it all the more seriously.

Bear in mind that when the web bot predictions pan out, it's not because Clif High or George Ure are so good at predicting things. It's that we, the human race, know what's coming due to our innate psychicness. Clif High has just developed some very clever software that has a good batting average when it comes to reading the collective unconscious through our expressions on the internet. Often, High doesn't understand what he's looking at. As he has said himself, the monkey mind gets hold of these broad archetypes and misinterprets them. The fine details, he can get wildly wrong, while, at the same time, reporting archetypes and memes that are dead on. Often, they can only be really understood in retrospect.

In Wikipedia's write-up on  the web bot project, they list some of the hits and misses. The first item on the miss list is a perfect demonstration of how totally misunderstood the nature of these predictions is.

A massive earthquake in Vancouver, Canada and the Pacific Northwest was predicted to occur on 12 December 2008.

While High's analysis of the predictive linguistics did point to an earthquake for the region that did not come to pass, much of the language he based that forecast on was fulfilled. Where High often gets it wrong is in his analysis of what the language means, not in the accuracy of the language itself. So what actually occurred? On December 11 2008, Bernie Madoff was arrested for running a ponzi scheme and the phrase "financial earthquake" was repeated ad nauseam, ad infinitum, to describe the Madoff scandal. And while no massive earthquake hit Vancouver and the Pacific Northwest, the "geographic isolation" predicted in the linguistics did because of massive snow storms. Flights and other mass transit were majorly disrupted ruining Christmas for many. It was not widely reported but because I have internet friends in the area I know that many people were unable to access major roadways or buy groceries. There were people who were snowed in for weeks, in some cases. So High's deduction that the "geographic isolation" would be caused by the "earthquake" was incorrect. He conflated two discreet language components that turned out to be separate. But the language itself was absolutely borne out by events.

And that was one of their "misses."

So, when it comes to the broad strokes, I take the Time Monks predictions seriously. The fine brushwork, less so.

While I think it's fairly inevitable that there will be a data gap, the reasons are incredibly unclear and High and Ure have done a fair bit of spit-balling, and most of their predictions are dire. Ure has several times advanced the idea of it being due to a web stoppage. Horrible as it sounds, it is, in my opinion, the most obvious reading that suggests itself. And the fact that the FBI is warning that they may shut down DNS access on March 8 points to one possibility. As any programmer knows, things like this rarely go smoothly.

The FBI is currently scheduled to take several temporary DNS servers offline on March 8th; an action that could result in the disconnection of millions of Internet users. This dilemma stems from a nasty trojan that was circulating back in 2011 called DNSChanger. This bug was used to alter a user’s DNS settings, and law enforcement used temporary DNS servers to give everyone time to fix the problem. Experts fear that many systems are still infected, and risk failure on March 8th.

Clif addressed this one head on near the end of his most recent interview, which can be downloaded here. It's one of the best and most informative interviews he's done in a while. Here's what he had to say on the data gap possibly being tied to some sort of internet take-down.

Well, let me tell ya, since about 2002 we started getting indications that there was this data gap showing up in 2012 and I used those terms, "data gap." First started showing up as swiss cheese kind of effect in our modelspace and these holes. But when we shift modelspace and make it move to get the temporal effect and figure out a time ratio, all of those swiss cheese holes form a solid gap. And so we've got this data gap that has been forecast since way back when appearing at this particular time. Our data gap had always been focused on March 15th of this year. Now was it forecasting the internet going down way back when in 2002? It didn't seem to relate to the hardware but there was no way to-to know at the time because the language was related to the emotions that people would feel as a result of whatever the event was that caused the data gap itself. And our data gap, since we didn't have any follow-up on that, we couldn't look ahead and then look back from that far perspective to see what had happened so to speak. And so it's been a big mystery for us what occurred in 2012. Coulda been, okay, we've been speculating, okay, the data gap could relate to the huge, uh, could relate to a nuclear war where we're all killed. That would certainly cause a big disruption in the psychic, uh, forcefield that is humanity. Or it could be solar flares or so on. Or, even way back when, it could be a total disruption, uh, of the internet. Well, the way that that comes out, though, uh, we've seen the data holes show up and there is some, I have to say, there's some supporting argument temporally based for George Ure's contention that the take-down of the internet attempts in Northern Africa as part of the Arab spring were the, coincidentally, when the first of our data holes showed up. So we may have been forecasting a generalized disruption of the internet that might begin on March 15th. If so, it persists for a long time. 

Another possibility that High mentions in that clip, and has mentioned several times over the years. is solar flare related disruption to the magnetosphere being responsible for the data gap. Obviously, if we had a massive Carrington event and it wiped out the electrical grid, our entire communication system would go. Of course we'd also quite possibly be thrown back to the 1800s. Around 11 minutes into the second hour of that same interview, High discusses the "sun disease" meme relative to the possibility of disruptive solar events. Interestingly, he charts 3 of these events between early 2012 and 2013. I mention this because it could arguably point to a Carrington or other electromagnetic disruption and it correlates to the time period over which the data stoppage occurs.

The auroras we've been seeing have been beautiful but the threat to our electrics shouldn't be underestimated. A recent study found that we are even more at risk than previously thought. 

"Even if it’s off by a factor of two, that’s a much larger number than I thought,” study author Pete Riley, senior scientist at Predictive Science, a space "weather" research firm in San Diego, told Wired.

. . .

Riley calculated the relationship between the severity of a solar storm and how likely it is to happen, basing his predictions on the so-called Carrington event of 1859, which caused widespread disruption of communication systems as well as brilliant auroras as far south as the Caribbean. During the event, Scientific American noted, "People could read the newspaper by their crimson and green light. Gold miners in the Rocky Mountains woke up and ate breakfast at 1 a.m., thinking the sun had risen on a cloudy day." 

War with Iran appears to be one of High's greatest fears as much of this coincides with the webbot meme "the Israeli mistake" and what is an increasingly audible drumbeat from the pro-bomb Iran faction. This particular concern drove High to cancel all his interviews and unplug from the conversation entirely because he was too depressed to talk about it. He rallied and went on to schedule some other interviews, shifting his focus to preventing a trigger to war, such as false flag attack. Please note that I do not in any way endorse the paranoid abuse of terms like zionist, mason, or illuminati. There is much I disagree with in terms of High's personal filter and these particular conspiracy theories are among them. However, that there is an active push for war with Iran is pretty hard to deny and the rhetoric is really ramping up.

When it comes to false flag possibilities, note how much of Barry McCaffrey's case for war relies on an anticipated attack from Iran. This retired general (please note my use of the word retired) and full-time war profiteer presented this Power Point to the editorial board of NBC, as reported by Glenn Greenwald. In it he practically writes the script for a false flag.

Here is the relevant text:

The latest saber rattling by the Iranian Armed Forces threatening the US Navy Carrier Stennis Battle Group to not return to the Gulf was significant. It was immediately and widely derided as an empty threat by the 5th Fleet in Bahrain. In my judgment the US will not and should not place a carrier at risk in the narrow Gulf waters if combat operations are deemed likely. There is a high probability that the Iranians could SINK a US carrier (with 5000+ sailors) in these constrained waters with their current military capabilities. It would mean all-out war if that happened.

I can't help noticing, though, that all this saber rattling is getting major push-back from active duty, as opposed to retired, military, with both the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Martin Dempsey, and the Air Force chief of staff, General Norton Schwartz, publicly questioning the wisdom and efficacy of striking Iran. And yesterday, General Dempsey dug in his heels during a Congressional hearing, repeating his assertion that Iran is a "rational actor" and should not be underestimated. Military chiefs don't speak out publicly like that unless they are in alignment with the current administration, which they are.

“Any military action in that region threatens greater instability in the region,” said White House spokesman Jay Carney.

. . .

So far, the United States has no conclusive evidence the Iranians are building a nuclear weapon, he said.

The Obama administration is advocating for a political solution to the crisis that includes International Atomic Energy Agency monitoring of Iran’s nuclear program.

It's also clear from this interview that President Obama is not taking military action off the table -- something that no President in a difficult negotiation would ever do -- but he has numerous preferred methods he wants to see unfold. It seems pretty clear that he wants to talk the Israeli government down when he meets with Prime Minister Netanyahu.

In my discussions with Israel, the key question that I ask is: How does this impact their own security environment? I've said it publicly and I say it privately: ultimately, the Israeli prime minister and the defense minister and others in the government have to make their decisions about what they think is best for Israel's security, and I don't presume to tell them what is best for them.

But as Israel's closest friend and ally, and as one that has devoted the last three years to making sure that Israel has additional security capabilities, and has worked to manage a series of difficult problems and questions over the past three years, I do point out to them that we have a sanctions architecture that is far more effective than anybody anticipated; that we have a world that is about as united as you get behind the sanctions; that our assessment, which is shared by the Israelis, is that Iran does not yet have a nuclear weapon and is not yet in a position to obtain a nuclear weapon without us having a pretty long lead time in which we will know that they are making that attempt.

The Obama administration is in no hurry to go for the military option and sees it as a long term strategy potential so I think it unlikely that we will take any such action this month. If that issue were to be involved with the release language, it would require a triggering event like a false flag and it would have to be very soon. Personally, I don't see how any of that could correlate with a period of prevailing release language as whatever war preparations took place in the aftermath of a false flag would be redolent with building tension language. That there is lots of language and speculation about war with Iran that could contribute to the crocodile teeth pattern we are supposed to be entering right now is a strong possibility. Nuclear annihilation in the coming weeks, far less so, in my opinion. I just don't see how that possibility fits the timeline.

The discussion posted at the top of the page includes a lot of theories and some of them are really positive. The possibility of the release language as part of a massive consciousness shift seems like a very real possibility to me and squares with this sense I've been having of the earth itself just suddenly thriving and blooming.

In this segment of Jay Weidner's speech he quotes High as saying years ago that what he saw for this time period was not a revolution as much as an evolution. One way or another, I think that is what's transpiring. It's only a question of how much pain will accompany that growth. I certainly hope it's a lot less than the worst predicted scenarios.

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