The idea for a College of Wiser Day on Earth is purely an inspirational one at this time, but one day it may become a physical reality, yet until such time, let it be a College held in the minds of those who feel connected to it.
The College of Wiser Day on Earth seeks to foster a renaissance of the tradition of observation and contemplation of daily existence, rather than use propositions from a historical, religious, cultural, or scholastic and usually remote response to life.
The College of Wiser Day on Earth is for anyone who wants to become proficient in contemplation, in order to understand themselves and the world in which we live.
The Ancient Art Of Contemplation
Contemplation is an ancient art with roots in all cultures, civilisations and religions. However, in the fast pace of contemporary life its relevance and usage has declined, although I am hopeful that a renaissance is occurring.
Contemplation is an enlightened response to the darkness and inhumanity of a largely technological, information intense, and often confusing age, which also frequently promotes meaningless, soul destroying, commercialisation and exploitation of people and nature.
Contemplation wisely reveals the inner knowing that lies within us, as well as the truths we brought to earth.
Interconnectedness Of All Things
Because we live in a universally interconnected field of life, the so-called every day experiences, are, through the coherent powers of nature, connected to the infinite, and therefore they are not separate from each other, they are in communion. Consequently, from simple everyday acts and events, we may realise the most profound depths of truth, love and beauty.
True wisdom has a timeless quality. And a truth-filled contemplation may likely have relevance in a 100 or more years, contrary to the short term, transient thinking, that infuses much of our current western civilisation, particularly our Arts, Sciences, Politics, and Economics.
My Contemplative Practice
My own contemplative practice began in 1984 after the death of my Father. Not long after, I experienced a vivid dream in which I was shown a new way of thinking. At first it was structured around achieving a set number of contemplations, but I soon discovered that this was just to get the contemplative process started.
It also soon became apparent that I was working not only with my own practical experiences, but also with the inspiration of a deeper, inner knowing. This enabled me to look from the inside of my experiences upon a larger, more universal background, rather than from just a single ego frame, cut off from others, and from the larger forces of life.
A set number of contemplations, or set subjects, may still be of relevance today for beginner contemplatives.
Knowledge & Self-Identification
If we seriously look at how we gain our knowledge, we will likely have a profound awakening about our personal knowledge and comprehension of reality.
Furthermore, we often strongly identify with what we perceive to be our personal knowledge, which makes it harder for us to see past it; even to the extreme extent of actively and violently opposing others, and going to war to support it.
However, beyond what we are taught to think in School, or by the Church, University, the Media, political groups, Government, or our own family, peer groups and so on, how much of our wisdom and knowledge comes from our very own experiences, inspirations, reason, or creative thought? Moreover, have we truly thought things through? What drives us to egoically hold on to our knowledge, and what are our motives for doing so? In the end we must ask, “What are we upholding?”
Accordingly all areas of our lives that may be considered to be known, popular knowledge, taken for granted, or perhaps patently obvious, are areas where we are likely to be consciously unaware or unwilling to examine. Our education and conditioning will have to a great extent, provided us with convincing deductions, assumptions, judgments and opinions, which largely manifest as unexamined, habitual thoughts or practices.
Therefore let us be bold and ask, ‘Whose truth is this, where and how did it originate, what does it really mean to me, why is it believed, and when does it apply?’ Consequently with this understanding, let us assume that everything is up for inquiry and contemplation.
To be well educated may also mean being well conditioned to the standards or requirements of the powerful in society. Those well educated are rewarded with high finances, high position, and high authority. And it is they in turn who become the setters of standards, the educators and figureheads for those who follow.
The educated, and or the financially powerful, rather than the wise, are more likely to be elevated to positions of responsibility in all areas of government, education, medicine, religion, finance, media, law and so on.
Unfortunately it means we are chiefly governed and dictated to by indoctrinated people, who are part of a highly structured, self-serving system.
Furthermore, those well educated may not be able to see or hear outside of the parameters of their educational or values system, and they will also tend to rely on others who have been educated under the same system. So there may be a certain closed-mindedness to other possibilities.
Therefore we must ask, “If we are educating through repetition, fear, examination, and promise of status and money, are we actually educating an individual to reveal their true capabilities and greatness, or are we disrespecting their individuality, by seeking their subservience to a self-perpetuating system of reward and punishment, that largely disregards humanity, in favour of power, prestige and money?”
Moreover, our educational system also seems more inclined to show us our limitations, rather than praise or reveal our inherent wisdom or natural abilities. In this way it fails just about everyone, including the well educated, for they too can experience loss of meaning.
Under this system money has become the measure that usually decrees our sense of self-esteem. Money has become the power and the glory.
Under this system, intelligence has been corrupted to mean the ability to regurgitate, and at its worst, to misuse others for our own ends.
And from a young age we are not usually taught to believe we are worthy, or intelligent; in fact the reverse is often the case. We have to compete, so that teachers, parents or peer groups do not consider us stupid. And the overt or covert threat, is that others are more intelligent, have greater ability, and are better looking, more worthy and so on.
From an early age we may learn certain self-destructive tendencies which result in such things as shyness, awkwardness, anxiety, low self-esteem, guilt, nervous tics, distorted body image, neediness, lack of self-belief, which results in slow learning, lack of confidence, eating disorders, performance anxiety, frustration, anger, fear, worry, and depression.
Through these tendencies, we become uncomfortable with who we think we are. And as we mature, we may believe that we are largely or solely this sense of uncomfortableness, with the result that we can experience physical and mental illness.
However it is not just the educational institutes, outside authorities, parents or peer groups who are responsible for an individuals conditioning; we also perversely learn to do it by ourselves, through emulation and the fear of not belonging.
Conformity, Fashion & Alienation
Are we truly making conscious decisions when we decide to begin smoking, go binge drinking, be seen in the right places, take drugs, attend a prestigious institution, believe in suit wearing experts and professionals, wear a baseball cap back to front, shop for upmarket brands, buy things because they look cool rather than be practical, look like a barbie doll, buy an exclusive car or live in an exclusive suburb or retirement village, get a face lift, drink a cola, eat a particular burger, wear things that are uncomfortable or misshape the body because of fashion, buy a brand of shoe, get a facial or body piercing or a tattoo?
Or are these decisions made for us by peer group pressure and businesses wanting to make money?
And when we do these things are we truly being an individual? Or have we lost something precious which we try to recover by wanting to belong, and therefore hope to be loved for?
However in spite of our ego’s attempts to create particular behaviours or to follow others behaviours, such attempts to secure love, furnish us at best only with an image of short-term gain, which needs to be regularly updated according to the latest fashion trends.
Inevitably and in the long term, these trends usually leave us more alienated from ourselves, as well as from others.
Conformity is obviously part of every human being’s experience, but if its influence deadens our passion, creativity, self esteem or wisdom, then it destroys our right of expression, and we, as well as the world, will suffer from this loss.
Accompanying this understanding, is an awareness to be tolerant, for to be judgmental about a person for conforming, will largely be an exercise in ignoring our own past or present conformity. All of us are a product of conforming, and therefore we can have understanding and compassion, because conforming may be the means through which people survive their life’s experiences.
Moreover, with regards to addictive behaviours, if we consciously thought about beginning a new habit or addiction without the incitement of peer pressure, or seeking the approval of others, we would likely not begin an addiction in the first place
Emulation, Conditioning & Blind Faith
Emulation rather than individuality is encouraged not only by educational institutes, business, and peer groups, but also by religion, politics, parents, the arts, sciences, and so on. In fact it is deemed a sure sign of the success of any predominant belief or trend, old or new.
The very foundations of who we think we are, are strongly tied in with our nationality, heritage, culture, education, family, family political leaning, religion and so on, and for the most part we shoulder and justify these things, without question.
Consequently we are conditioned to commit to various institutions, religions, cultural, national and family traditions with a blind faith.
In religion, blind faith is often deemed a necessity. And many of us still have blind faith in Government, Science, the Media, the Medical and Pharmaceutical establishment and the Law.
Yet how can we possibly have blind faith, when for example, open Government no longer appears to exist? Is there any Government in the world that is open, not secretive, and therefore not conspiring with other parties, particularly powerful and financially powerful ones?
If we are blind towards the influence of all of these forces in our lives, we will be lacking a large degree of the ability to be self-determined.
Those who realise they have been conditioned, have an opportunity to open to a larger world, and a larger understanding, and therefore a greater possibility to make a difference in their own lives, as well as the world they live in.
Self-Enquiry & Becoming Open
Obviously an attitude of openness is a primary requirement that will allow us to have access to an overview, and therefore hopefully a more inclusive outlook.
The ability to contemplate takes time. And often the stresses of modern life leave little room for self-enquiry. However if we want to be freer, to renounce being an overly conditioned human being, we need to become an individual once again. We need to reclaim our own voice, our own values, our own wisdom and destiny.
Contemplation & The College of Wiser Day on Earth
The reasoning behind the College of Wiser Day on Earth is to create a more thoughtful way of thinking about life and the issues with which we are all confronted, both personally and globally. There is surely no field of study more important than this!
By simple conscious observation and contemplation of what lies before us in our day-to-day, providential learning opportunities, we begin to truly think for ourselves.
Do We Dare To Look Within?
Do we dare look at our conditioned subconscious, our unexamined thoughts, beliefs, emotions and Institutions? For it is obviously detrimental to continue to rely on such things as inherited dogmatic thought, doctrinal religious tradition, regurgitative and conditioning educational systems, emphatic and overbearing opinion, biased media, political short-term policy, arrogant nationalism, economic rationalism, scientific and medical imperialism, and Governmental or individual dictate.
It is recognised by Contemplatives that these states are aspects of the human learning condition; they are part of the evolution and understanding of the need of the human ego to attempt to control others and the environment. History however, shows that such control eventually fails…..
I believe that we are not here to learn to control, but to learn to be open, or in other words, to become more and more aware.
Life, Our Greatest Teacher
For most of my life I have lived with a large “Why”……The experiences of my daily life have taught me that life is our greatest teacher, if we are prepared to look and listen. Life is eager to teach, if we open ourselves to the inherent wisdom that it flourishes upon us…
In this regard I have found that contemplation is the most embracing tool for discovery.
During the last 38 years I have created a disciplined approach to writing contemplations.
The contemplations contained in Wiser Day on Earth, are simply the result of inquiring into the process of living. They bring with them a renewed sense that life does indeed have a purpose, and that we, individually and collectively, have a profound part to play.
The Early Suppression Of Our Sovereignty
As children we are told what to think, what to believe, and usually we don’t have a choice. We are not taught to think, but rather to repeat what we are told.
During this time we learn to largely suppress or deny or own sense of sovereignty, and along with it, our free-thinking, creative ability, to the dictates of authority. We are not taught how to think, but rather to repeat what we are told. We are not taught to think skilfully, creatively or critically, and like the conditioning of Pavlov’s dog, we learn to slavishly hurry to the authority of the school bell every 40 minutes around the campus.
Ingrained Conditioning So That Life Becomes A Race
When we become adults, the bell is silent, but for many of us, I suspect it still runs inside as an ingrained conditioning device to the dictates of both time and authority, which well serves the requirements of government, industry and commerce. From this we are moulded to believe that time is money, and our lives become an equation which reads something like….to pursue and create more money, or to try to get ahead, over the number of hours we work in a lifetime, minus our consumption.
Life then becomes a race, since we are consistently conditioned to consume. For most, it is a race doomed to failure, as we worry whilst saving for a rainy day, or plan for a future that never seems to quite materialise, because there is always something to pay for, or taxes to be taken, which further increases our slavery and consumption, and therefore our alienation from ourselves, others and nature.
To purchase a house is the dream of many. Yet to repay the bank loan can take a large part of one’s working lifespan. Having a job, or as its sometimes called a, Just Over Broke, will in fact keep most people in the just over broke category, and therefore tied to a job as the mainstay of their security.
With the anxiety caused by such security worries, making a living becomes more time consuming and more important than making a life. The relative few who have moved out of this slavish condition have usually done so through investing in property or gambling on the stock market.
Wealth Equals False Security
Property investing has probably produced more wealth than any other type of investment. However, the cost is routinely through the loss of one’s honour and the extortion of others, through inflated and spiralling prices. Investors typically seek the largest possible return for the least amount. In fact property extortion is often seen as the best or only way to make money or to get ahead. It is justified by the fact that those who have been extorted, can themselves extort others later on.
Conditioned To Consume
From a young age, our minds are colonised to be consumers, and in order to be really good consumers, or in other words greedy consumers, we need to compete against or extort from others. A determined focus on capital gains may make us financially successful, but it may also make us morally, ethically, and humanly lost.
Inadequacy, Low Self-Esteem & Education
Education has a tendency to create many children and adults with inadequacy and low self-esteem.
I also believe that low self-esteem is a likely cause of consumerism and greed, by which we attempt to fill an internal emptiness.
Unfortunately we can become so deeply conditioned through our education, that we regard the testing and examination by educational institutions to be a trial of our very existence, and a keystone to our self-esteem. Some cannot stand the shame of their failure and seek a way out by leaving, or all too frequently by suicide. We are driven to prove to these authorities that we are worthy of their homogenised standards. Otherwise we are, by these standards, as well as our own deeply held conditioned beliefs, considered to be abject failures. This is surely a crime against the humanity of any child or adult.
We need to deeply ask, “What are we learning in these institutions?” Are we learning life skills? Are we learning communication skills? Healthy social skills? Parenting skills? Thinking skills? Values or ethics? Is there any real guidance or appreciation for wisdom? Even basic literacy and numeracy skills remain undeveloped amongst many who attend. Illiteracy rates are still very high in the so-called first world.
A more personally appreciative, meaningful, free thinking, creative, wisdom based education would likely increase a student’s intelligence quite dramatically. Imagine if we were all 50% more wisely intelligent, and how a resultant, more cooperative world would look? This is what I suspect most of us have missed out on.
Unfortunately education is largely regarded as a holy cow, and therefore it is difficult to criticise or to see its inadequacies. Even many of those who leave their education early, later feel that they have missed out on something important. However those who stayed on, if they deeply consider, and choose to see through the blindfolds of conditioning and ignorance, will realise that they did not miss out on anything so vastly important to their lives. However they do have something which those who left early do not; namely a certificate or a title to help ease their security fears.
Career Path To Money, Power Or Prestige
Those who choose a career because they think it is a path to earn good money, high power or prestige, are deluding their primary reason for being. Such a career is obviously of secondary importance to that of the money, power or prestige. In other words they are missing the fundamental point of the path they are choosing.
Much conditioning from family, peer groups, society and academia, may instil in an individual a pseudo love or conditioning for a particular career, for example to follow the cliched or popular advice to become a Doctor or a Lawyer.
However, if someone chooses to become a Doctor because it pays well, and they regard it as being a powerful and prestigious career, means that any humanity, compassion, and healing focus will be of secondary importance. Such a person cannot primarily be a Doctor. Instead they will behave as an investor, as well as a power-seeking, perhaps overbearing, aspiring medical celebrity, who will be more likely to have a cosy, financially rewarding relationship with pharmaceutical companies, than have good interpersonal communication with their patients.
Entrenched System & It’s Consequences
Everyone is affected by such conditioning disease, even the educators as well as the celebrities and figureheads that many admire or try to emulate. In their defence, educators have been part of an entrenched system for decades, if not centuries. However they have largely forgotten that the original meaning of ‘to educate’ is to lead or draw out; not to stuff in. Often the more educated people are, the less they have of natural, common sense and intuitive thinking skills. Whilst more free-thinking, home schooled students with less institutional conditioning, generally outperform those well educated.
A simple test of how well a person is educated (or in other words, largely conditioned), is how they are able to deal with, or offer solutions to a situation outside of the box, or outside of the system they are working in, rather than insist that the box or the system is the only way. Are they able to creatively think for themselves, or are they internally listening to a pre-programmed memory of what to do in such a situation?
The stress of needing to cope with the demands of keeping up, or trying to get ahead, whilst also having to navigate a way through school phobias, bullying, teacher abuse, threats of detention, suspension, punishment and expulsion, as well as peer pressure that fosters such things as drug abuse and wanting to be part of the ‘in’ crowd, together with parental pressure, exam pressure and the competitive pressure for higher places, as well as the additional pressure of homework, where even more overly rational, mental and memorising work further dehumanises the individual, all take an enormous toll on the creative passion of human beings. No wonder so many lose interest or drop out, or feel like they have failed.
On the other hand, children who are perceived as being different from the average, or who are gifted, may find it difficult to avoid intimidation. And therefore the tendency may be for them to try to take on the attributes of being average, in order to avoid bullying and intimidation.
Through our often unsaid distaste for all of these pressures, we can experience reactive forces and become uncomfortable with who we think we are. As we mature we may believe that we are largely or solely this sense of uncomfortableness, with the result that we may experience physical and mental illness.
Historically many religious clergy have perpetuated the fear of hell and damnation as a way to condition and have control of their congregation. In this manner, they have severed themselves from the people they hope to serve, and have simultaneously cut themselves off from the heart of their own spirituality. Yet they seek to prolong their stories with formal, soulless rituals, and expensive regalia.
Most religions rarely or vigorously speak out against repression, social injustice or war. Yet hypocritically and self-righteously preach covertly, or sometimes overtly, that their own religion is morally and spiritually superior to other religions and beliefs, and therefore theirs is the only way to attain salvation.
Primary Or Secondary Science?
There appear to be two forms of Science or enquiry. Primary Science or enquiry, serves humanity, the earth and its ecology. Secondary Science, serves vested interests and seeks power.
Those who realise they have been predominantly conditioned to serve secondary science or enquiry, have an opportunity to open to the more far-reaching, primary world, where a larger understanding awaits, and therefore a greater possibility to make a difference in their own lives, as well as the world they live in.
Learning To Be Open Through Contemplation
This web based app is the blossoming of 38 years of contemplative experience. For most of my life I have lived with a large “Why”……which has culminated in Wiser Day on Earth.
If we are prepared to look, listen, and deeply consider or contemplate life, then Life will be our greatest Teacher.
Personally I have found that contemplation kindles a powerful sense of mindfulness, coupled with attentive wonder, and it is therefore a most embracing tool for discovery and learning.
The contemplations on this site are simply the result of inquiring into the process of life and living. They bring with them a renewed sense that life does indeed have a purpose, and that we, individually have a profound part to play.
With respect and kindness for your own insightful, contemplative journey.