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Welcome To Vilcabamba
"The Sacred Valley of Longevity"


This Is A Privately Circulated Blog, scribbled exclusively for Friends & Familiars, that peers into and pontificates about Expat life in the hinterlands of South America. If your eyesight is less than optimal (like mine), then just click the type size up a notch on your browser..


Here you will find a series of curmudgeonly commentaries that I've posted from atop my rickety old soapbox for the past few years. And yes, there are indeed political rantings, so place your seats in the upright position and fasten your seat belts .... it may be a bumpy ride.






1/15/16

The REAL Reason Psychedelics Are illegal

“Psychedelics are illegal not because a loving government is concerned that you may jump out of a third story window. Psychedelics are illegal because they dissolve opinion structures and culturally laid down models of behaviour and information processing. They open you up to the possibility that everything you know is wrong.”

– Terence McKenna (American philosopher, psychonaut, ethnobotanist, lecturer, writer and author of several books. He spoke and wrote about a variety of subjects, including psychedelic drugs, plant-based entheogens, shamanism, metaphysics, alchemy, language, culture, technology and the theoretical origins of human consciousness.

12/30/15

Ritalin and the Day-Dreamers Amongst Us

My paternal grandfather was a doctor, a physician specializing in psychiatry. However, he always thought of himself as a neurologist, that subsection of medicine dealing with the nervous system. HUGE difference between the two practices.

At its core all psychiatry is a collection of theories expressed by humans who still cannot define the ‘psyche’, ‘mind’ or what it to be ‘human’. Even the cult founder of psychiatry, Schlomo Freud (you probably know him by name of Dr. Sigmund Freud who died as a cocaine addict), acknowledged that since ‘mind’ cannot be examined by collecting and codifying all human behavior - - except by means of classifying the subject in question as being either ‘sane’ or 'mentally ill’.

Granddad never believed in that controverial psychiatric distinction. My father’s older brother, also a M.D. physician, but who called himself a psychiatrist, did. Different generation and different belief system.

This so-called ‘science’ known as psychiatry is based on criteria listed in the widely used “Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals of Mental Disorders”. In other words, criteria made up by the psychiatrists themselves that has generated much criticism, including the National Institute of Medical Health, which argued that the DSM is both unscientific and subjective. A good example of this is to be found in term “Attention Deficit Syndrome”, otherwise known as plain old inattention by those of us who habitually looked out of the school windows day-dreaming during boring classroom lectures. Today you get the prescription medication called Ritalin for that.

Both Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak who invented Apple Computers, along with a bright guy named Einstein, were dreamers ... and none of them were forced to take Ritalin back then. Oh wait a minute, “Attention Deficit Syndrome” had not been invented by the psychiatrists yet. Hmm-mmm, ‘Nuff said?

12/2/15

"A Wicked Storm This Way Comes"

In the midst of the elder-age season of my discontent, I see that there is already a wicked storm beginning to sweep across the land of North America. However, most folks are too distracted by their iGadgets and the imbecilic political campaigns to notice. Just so long as we can Twitter, text, post selfies and amuse ourselves with other electronic opiates, the longer we will remain unconscious to the dangers around us.

What we are now experiencing is but the lull before the actual storm. Despite those lightning flashes over on the horizon, few are heading for the safety of their storm cellars. The potential for catastrophe is exceedingly high and burying our heads in the sand is not a viable strategy.

“The people have been permitting a small cadre of elitists, billionaire financiers, corporate chiefs, propagandist media moguls, and crooked politicians to make the choices dictating the path of our country since the 2008 dawn of this Fourth Turning. The choices they have made and continue to make have imperiled the world and guaranteed a far more calamitous outcome as we attempt to navigate through the trials and tribulations ahead. Their strategy to “save the country” by saving bankers, while selling the plan to the public as beneficial to all and essential to saving our economic system, has proven to be nothing more than the greatest wealth transfer scheme in human history.” - theburningplatform.com

11/7/15

Don Alverto Taxo, Ecuadorian Shaman

Several years ago I posted a talk by an Ecuadorian Shaman/Teacher named don Alverto Taxo. It is in beautifully spoken Spanish, but with English subtitles. For those of you who would like an insight into the culture and belief system of the native people of the Andes of South America, this is well worth a listen.

11/4/15

Rattling of Sabers .... again!

I have moved this previously posted item up to the beginning once again, due to the continued bombardment of invective by our politicians crying for WAR against Iran and and Syria ... and everywhere else in this battered world of ours. It is well worth reading (and hearing) again. It is, in fact, my small tribute to those who have served us so well in battle, but who have been so ill-served upon their return by the very politicians and media pundits who sent them into harm's way.

As I see and hear those in congress, and those in this current administration, rattle their sabers and cry out for war with .....(insert your choice of countries here) ..... the majority of whom have never even served militarily, not to speak of never having seen combat, I'm reminded of a very old ballad sung by the late great Liam Clancy of the Clancy Brothers. It is a cautionary tale about the horrors of war presented in the lyrics of a mournful song, one which every armchair warrior and political hack urging us to war ought to take to heart.

10/20/15

"The Drum Major Instinct" Martin Luther King, Jr

Here is something quite different from my usual 'offerings'. By way of the always brilliant mind of "Jesse"

www.http://jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com.

It is the last sermon given by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr prior to his assignation 2 months later.

It is a christian-oriented sermon, but it goes far beyond mere secularism and is something that needs to be heard with an open and unbiased mind. As important today as it was some 40 years ago.



10/14/15

Hey .. wann'a invest in the stock market

"Watch a pro football game, and it's obvious the guys on the field are far faster, stronger and more willing to bear and inflict pain than you are. Surely you would say, 'I don't want to play against those guys!'

Well, 90% of stock market volume is done by institutions, and half of that is done by the world's 50 largest investment firms, deeply committed, vastly well prepared -- the smartest sons of bitches in the world working their tails off all day long. They are the Pros. You know what? I don't want to play against those guys either."

Charles Ellis, who helps oversee the $15-billion endowment fund at Yale University

A note to those who say they are "believers"

“Christianity started in Palestine as a fellowship; it moved to Greece and became a philosophy; it went to Italy and became an institution; it moved to South America and Europe and became a culture; it came to America and became an enterprise.” - Sam Pascoe

9/20/15

Diogenes Looking For .....

Here is poor old Diogenes with his lamp, looking hither, thither and there for an honest politician .... and finding none.

9/1/15

Vilcabamba's Glacial Milk

I am often asked about why I selected Vilcabamba as a place to live. That's easy to answer. It was the water.

Let me explain.

There is a protected Ecuadorian regional preserve, Podocarpus National Park, which claims to have pre-Ice Age microorganisms and one of the world's few remaining pristine rainforests. This virtually inaccessible area surrounds the hidden-away Garden of Eden called Vilcabamba.

High up among the surrounding mountain peaks lies this area of primeval tundra, which is made up of great masses of vegetation .... layer upon layer of these grasses and vegetation of many types and colors. In this untouched and uninhabited area, there are also some fourteen lakes, each containing the melt of this uncontaminated glacier ice.

This icy melt is often referred to as "Glacial Milk", a solution of ionically dissolved elements in a suspension of finely ground rock dust from the living parent rock of the mountains through glacial friction. The suspended minerals in this "Glacial Milk" are referred to as metallic colloidal minerals.

Come the rainy season, these lakes of glacial water overflow and flood the tundra, which then acts as a filter for any undesirable heavy metals or minerals. But this humic layer does far more than merely act as a filtering devise. These plants and ancient vegetation had never been exposed to any chemicals, fertilizers or pesticides. The plants are gradually transformed into humus, a rich organic mass that is food for new plant life.

After seeping through these countless layers of humic tundra, this purest of waters flows down into thousands of pools, then into hundreds of cascading waterfalls. And remember this part, because the countless waterfalls contribute to the wonderfully high negative ion count in the valley, which contributes to its healthiness. Finally, the long journey of the pristine water ends up in the water jugs and homes of the people of Vilcabamba.

And that, dear readers, is what brought me to Vilcabamba .... the Agua Sacrada (sacred water) of this Andean village in the mountains of Ecuador.