Category Archives: Silk Road Visions

Shamanism * Psyche, Symbol and Transformation

In Shamanism * Journey to the West, I suggested that Shamanism had come to the West in the same way that successive waves of Eastern philosophies and practices had come. Just as yoga and meditation, Buddhism and Taoism were embraced by a spiritually bankrupt West, so Shamanism has resonated in the Western soul. I observed that Shamanism seems not only here to stay, but is here because – even in its stripped-down “westernized” forms – Shamanism works.

I wondered if we in the West have been mistaken in our concerns about emulating the dramatic indigenous forms of traditional Shamanism. It seems clear that the spiritual and psychological power of Shamanism lies in the metaphysical realities – alchemical processes of the Mind – which it has embodied and transmitted through the ages. Though we have so much to learn from traditional Shamanism, is it possible this is a two-way street? Has Shamanism come to the West on its own Journey, to explore its origins, find new forms, and express itself anew?

Here, I look at the elements of Shamanism that I believe have been somewhat obscured in both Indigenous Shamanism and the new “Core” Shamanism in the West. It seems to me that, beyond all these cultural forms of shamanism, there exists what an essential Shamanism in which the psyche, through symbol, can access energy and matter to create transformation and healing.

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Ancient Strategic Thought Behind China’s New Silk Road

Successful China may be, with a foreign policy which has spread its power around the globe; but China’s New Silk Road Vision is no celebration of the ancient land and sea routes linking East and West in a grand exchange of goods, innovations and philosophies.

Instead, it perfectly illustrates how China continues to carefully and successfully use its unique forms of strategic thought to navigate in military, economic and political spheres of a world in which it is now supremely at home.

Comparative Strategic Culture and the Use Of Force, Space and Time In International Relations: Chinese Foreign Policy As Protracted War

My Master’s thesis was written in 1992 and time has shown it to be as relevant now as it was then. You can visit the link above and view/download in PDF at the University of Victoria lnk above.

At that time, I made the point that Mao’s strategic thought, rooted in ancient Chinese philosophy only slightly updated in Leninism-Marxism, was the key to China’s military and economic success.

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Silk Road Journeys * Insight, Guidance and Healing From Your Dreams

Rest and dream in the caravanserai of Sleep…

The Inward Journey
Know Thyself! Nowhere is this more possible and more surprising than in DreamWork.

Each part of us makes appearances upon the Stage of Dreams, and this makes for a vast cast of characters indeed. From past-life selves to pretend selves to subpersonalities/fragments and to would-be finer selves, our night-life is informative, creative, and incredibly important.

The benefits of the dreaming state appear to be the real loss when we do not get enough sleep. The body can manage on very little sleep, but the personality, with its mysterious connection to both the Physical Self and the Higher Self, cannot.

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Libya Dreaming * Far Memory and the Sands of Space and Time

Sigh…In modern times Libya makes  news headlines for its wars and struggles to find a place in the world.  It was not always so…

Sometimes I find myself Libya Dreaming, following a trail of old maps, histories, and feelings, till I arrive, at last, in the golden sands of Far Memory…

There is – there was – a Libya I know better than the city I have lived in for 45 years.

Archaeological Site of Cyrene (Libya)

A pillar of ancient history, it was a jewel in the crown of the Roman Empire from 146 BC to 640 AD. It was prized even earlier by the Greeks, who founded Cyrene – the Athens of Africa – in Cyrenaica in Eastern Libya from which modern eastern Libya and Libyans still take their name.

The site of Cyrene was chosen – most wisely – on the advice of the Oracle of Delphi and the city would become one of the largest in the Mediterranean. The area is now a World Heritage site and is rich in mythology and history.

There is a strong possibility that the invading Greeks built their temple to Apollo for protection from Libyan Amazons and over artefacts of an earlier, more advanced culture.

In the beginning, though, it was the home of the Berbers. The earliest name given them – Libu – appears to be the origin of the word Libya, the name for most of the African continent in classical Egyptian, Greek and Roman times.

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