breathing life into essays unit plan.

Such are the fruits of the strife for power. Evil they must be, because power is evil in itself. How can the taking away from a man his intelligence, his will, his self-guidance be anything but evil? If it were not evil in itself, there would be no meaning in the higher part of nature, there would be no guidance in the great principles—for power, if we once acknowledge it, must stand above everything else, and cannot admit of any rivals. If the power of some and the subjection of others are right, then men would exist merely as the dust to be trodden under the feet of each other; the autocrats, the emperors, the military empires, the socialist, perhaps even the anarchist with his detestable bomb, would each and all be in their own right, and find their own justification; and we should live in a world of perpetual warfare, that some devil, as we might reasonably believe, must have planned for us. To those of us who believe in the soul—and on that great matter we who sign hold different opinions—the freedom of the individual is not simply a question of politics, but it is a religious question of the deepest meaning. The soul to us is by its own nature a free thing, living its life here in order that it may learn to distinguish and choose between the good and the evil, to find its own way—whatever stages of existence may have to be passed through—toward the perfecting of itself. You may not then, either for the sake of advancing your own interests, or for the sake of helping any cause, however great and desirable in itself, in which you believe, place bonds on the souls of other men and women, and take from them any part of their freedom. You may not take away the free life, putting in its place the bound life. Religion that is not based on freedom, that allows any form of servitude of men to men, is to us only an empty and mocking word, for religion means following our own personal sense of right and fulfilling the commands of duty, as we each can most truly read it, not with the hands tied and the eyes blinded, but with the free, unconstrained heart that chooses for itself. And see clearly that you cannot divide men up into separate parts—into social, political and religious beings. It is all one. All parts of our nature are joined in one great unity; and you cannot therefore make men politically subject without injuring their souls. Those who strive to increase the power of men over men, and who thus create the habit of mechanical obedience, turning men into mere state creatures, over whose heads laws of all kinds are passed, are striking at the very roots of religion, which becomes but a lifeless, meaningless thing, sinking gradually into a matter of forms and ceremonies, whenever the soul loses its freedom. Many men recognize this truth, if not in words, yet in their hearts, for all religions of the higher kind tend to become intensely personal, resting upon that free spiritual relation with the great Oversoul—a relation that each must interpret for himself. And remember you can't have two opposed powers of equal authority; you can't serve two masters. Either the religious conscience and sense of right must stand in the first place, and the commands of all governing authorities in the second place; or the state machine must stand first, and the religious and moral conscience of men must follow after in humble subjection, and do what the state orders. If you make the state supreme, why should it pay heed to the rule of conscience, or the individual sense of right; why should the master listen to the servant? If it is supreme, let it plainly say so, take its own way, and pay no heed, as so many rulers before them have refused to do, to the conscience of those they rule.

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If we ask more closely as to the activities that belong to Devachan, and how man will function in that lofty region when he becomes self-conscious there, again we must look to experience for the answer - the experience of those who have outrun their fellows and are already familiar with many of its powers and its possibilities. Service there takes on a new aspect, for as mind touches mind the lesser comes into direct contact with the Great Ones - so far as the lesser can touch the greater - and the knowledge they impart is so full, so rich, that as it is studied new possibilities seem always to be welling up within it, and what is told is not a hundredth part of that which is placed within reach; it seems to encircle and penetrate the mind till the man is plunged into a sea of wisdom and knowledge which permeates him through and through. There again compassion expands, rejoicing in the new channels which it finds for its outward flowing. The man on the devachanic plane reaches downwards to all planes, sending down the forces that belong to those higher regions to strengthen and illuminate the minds of men, affecting them by masses instead of one by one, affecting numbers by far­reaching thoughts, helping them to see truth as true, and impressing on the inner mind that which the outer brain is unable to comprehend. Thus part of the help given to those who are aided consists in the working on the inner or higher mind, suggesting a new idea, a scientific “discovery”, a missing link of knowledge, and this higher mind grasping the presented truth works it down into its own lower nature, so that this innermost conviction overpowers all logic and all the slow processes of reasoning, illuminating the lower mind, making comprehensible the thought, dominating the will, until all the lower nature is enlightened by the ray from its higher Self. That is part of the help rendered to men by those who have reached the devachanic region, and it will be rendered more and more fully to the backward of the race as larger numbers learn to function on the devachanic plane. Here are possibilities that as yet are hardly dreamed of, the training of thought to reach heights unimagined, the making of mighty elementals and the sending them forth to aid into the world of men, the guiding of minds groping after truth, the breathing of loftiest inspirations into those who have fitted themselves to receive them. As thought takes form and the forces of devachanic life are thrown into it, such a form becomes a most potent agent, and thus one worker can aid myriads of his fellow-men.

Theosophy : The Spiritual Life by Annie Besant- Volume II

There is very much more to be said as regards this matter of state power and state interference with the lives of men. I ought to point out the extravagance and bad management of state departments. It is not often that we see people spend the money that belongs to others either quite honestly or quite intelligently, and state departments are no exception to the rule. I ought to point out the jobbery and the stupidity that so often cling to state undertakings; the unfitness of the agents that governments are obliged to employ; the necessarily bad methods, whether by competition or official nomination, of selecting them; the unfitness of the universal systems which are applied to all parts of a nation, to those who ought by the very law of their being to be differing from each other, and yet are forced to be alike; the dull, heavy routine into which these undertakings fall within a few years after they have been commenced and have ceased to attract public attention–a routine only broken by the spasmodic revolutions in their management to which they are subject, when some flagrant abuse brings them now and again under the public eye. I ought to point out how reckless in all countries becomes the rivalry of the great political parties which hope to obtain the good things that go under the name of office; the increasing deterioration of the people when invited on all hands to judge everything from the one standpoint of their own immediate advantage; the inconsistency of what is said and done by each party, when acting as government or as opposition, and the hypocrisy that is begotten while they serve their own interests under the cloak of the interests of the people. I ought to point out how heavy and sore a discouragement for labor is the load of taxation, that is thrown upon the nation to support all the grand institutions, which politicians love to look at as their own handiwork; and I ought to show that the really successful nation in the industrial competition that is now springing up so fiercely between all nations will be the one that has fewest taxes, fewest officials, and fewest departments to support, and at the same time possesses the greatest power in its individual units to adapt themselves readily to the industrial changes that come so quickly in the present day. I ought to show you that all that encourages routine, dislike of change, dependence upon external authority and direction, is fatal to this habit of self-adaptation, and that this self-adaptation can only come where the free life is led. I ought to show that all great uniform systems–clumsy and oppressive as they must always be in their rude attempt to embrace every part of a nation–clumsy and oppressive, for example, as our education system and our Poor Law system are—are always tending (sometimes in very subtle and unsuspected ways) to stupefy and brutalize a nation in character; and, as far as the richer classes are concerned, to destroy those kindly feelings, that sympathy for the pains of others, and that readiness to help those who need help, which grow, and only can grow, on a free soil. If by official regulations you prescribe for me my moral obligations toward others, you may be sure that in a short time my own moral feelings will cease to have any active share in the matter. They will soon learn to accept contentedly the official limit you have traced for them, and to drowse on, unexercised because unrequired, within that limit. Indeed, I believe that if you only taxed us enough, for so-called benevolent purposes, you would presently succeed in changing all the really generous men into stingy men. Again I ought to show how all great uniform state systems are condemned by our knowledge of the laws of nature. It has been owing to the differences of form that come into existence that the ever-continuous improvement of animal and plant life has taken place; the better fitted form beating and replacing the less-fitted form. But our great uniform systems, by which the state professes to serve the people, necessarily exclude difference and variety; and in excluding difference and variety, exclude also the means of improvement. I ought to show how untrue is the cry against competition. I ought to show that competition has brought benefits to men tenfold–nay, a hundredfold–greater than the injuries it has inflicted; that every advantage and comfort of civilized life has come from competition; and that the hopes of the future are inseparably bound up with the still better gifts which are to come from it and it alone. I ought to show, even if this were not so, even if competition were not a power fighting actively on your side, that still your efforts would be vain to defeat or elude it. I ought to show that all external protection, all efforts to place forcibly that which is inferior on the same level as that which is superior, is a mere dream, born of our ignorance of nature's methods. The great laws of the world cannot change for any of us. There is but one way, one eternally fixed way, and no other, of meeting the skill, or the enterprise, or the courage, or the frugality, or the greater honesty that beats us in any path of life, whether it be in trade or in social life, in accumulating wealth or in following knowledge, in opening out new countries or in conquering old vices, and that way is to develop the same qualities in ourselves. The law is absolute, and from it there is no appeal. No Chinese walls, no system based upon exclusion and disqualification and suppression, can do this thing for us; can bring efficiency to a level with inefficiency, and leave progress possible. I ought to show how far more flexible, adaptive, and efficient a weapon of progress is voluntary combination than enforced combination; how every want that we have will be satisfied by means of voluntary combination, as we grow better fitted to make use of this great instrument; whether it be to provide against times of depression in trade and want of employment, of sickness, of old age; whether it be to secure to every man his own home and his own plot of ground; or to place within his reach the higher comforts and the intellectual luxuries of life.

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The unique properties (characteristics) of water make life possible on Earth

A Life-Saving Checklist | The New Yorker

Many into their structures. also incorporate silica, and those are among the few life forms that use silicon, although it is one of . Diatoms seem to gain , and plants seem to have structural advantages, but it is thought that plants also used silica for a defensive measure, as it helps make plants unpalatable. Eating plants full of silica structures, called , is like chewing sand. This is particularly true with grasses, as phytoliths make chewing them a tooth-wrecking process, particularly for ruminants and their thorough chewing. Grazing herbivores have heavily enameled hypsodont teeth (also called high-crowned teeth) to . In North America, hypsodont herbivores proliferated while those without that heavy enamel (also called low-crowned teeth), which were browsers instead of grazers, declined. By about nine mya, North American browsers had largely vanished and grazers dominated the new grasslands. Earth kept cooling and drying, and fewer than seven mya, steppe vegetation began replacing savanna-like grasslands, and forests were decimated. This led to the greatest mass extinction in pre-human North America in the Cenozoic Era, as many species of horses, mastodonts, bears, dogs, and small predators went extinct, as well as mice, beavers, and moles. Asia and Africa were hit similarly, although not quite as hard as North America seemed to be, but South America and Australia hardly seemed affected at all. New Zealand’s surrounding seafloor changed from warm-water communities to the Southern Ocean communities that it has today.

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Fifty Orwell Essays - Project Gutenberg Australia

Taking up the activities on the side of love, and first the service of those above us, we find that when man passes into the astral world he will see there as phenomena which he can investigate much that he only dreamed of, or took on faith, when restricted to the physical world. And there are great truths, great realities, mighty intelligences with whom he will first come into touch in this astral world - only touching the fringe and not yet under­standing the nature - only a far-off touch, but still it will make them real to him, and no longer only matters of faith. As this unknown world opens up before the awakened vision of man, as it is now open only to the few, he will find that he is not only able to see with far-reaching vision, not only able to use astral senses in the physical body, but that he can leave the physical body whenever it is an inconvenience or a hindrance, and can use his astral body to travel through the astral world. Then there will come within the compass of his possibilities communication with the great intelligences who may there be reached when the limits of the physical are overstepped. And we shall find that religion will take to itself new life, for the very basis of scepticism will be struck away when mankind can see and investigate phenomena now wrongly deemed super­natural, and when men come again into direct touch with beings whose very existence is now denied. So also must superstition disappear when men can range at will the world beyond the grave; that which is no longer the unknown will no longer be a land of terrors, and men’s fears will no more be played upon by those who seek to subjugate them through dread of the unseen world. All men will know that world, all will understand its phenomena, marvelous now, but then to be familiar, then to enter into daily life. What we call death will be practically shorn of its sorrows, for man will be able to live in the astral world, to mingle with those who have altogether shaken off for a time the limitations of the physical body; the astral world will have come within the compass of the ordinary life, and the division caused by death will be swept away. The contact with the greater Ones, the teaching that then will be thrown open to the world, the possibilities of reaching them - space having no longer power to divide in view of the swiftness of passage that belongs to that subtler region - these will place within the reach of all opportunities of knowledge that today come only to the very few, knowledge that will change the whole aspect of life, and open up before the mind of man his still diviner possibilities. There too men will meet the great teachers of the past, and will know that they are not dreams but living men - that all that has been taught of them as noblest is verily true, while all that the ignorance of men has done to obscure them will fade away in that brighter light, in the clearer vision of that purer day. And when from the line of religion we turn to that of help to those around us and compassion to those below, what will not mankind be able to accomplish when a majority can do what only a minute minority can do now - grasp the astral forces and use them constantly both in the physical and the astral worlds? In the physical world a man will be able to aid others, to protect others by consciously sending forces from the astral to effect his purpose, thinking a useful thought and clothing it in elemental essence, thus creating an artificial elemental which he can direct to the helping of the weaker, the safeguarding of the unprotected, the warding-off of danger, forming a continual shield for anyone to whom it is sent. All this will be within the easy reach of those who are the vanguard of human evolution, and the most backward will be aided by those who have advanced further, all these powers coming within the reach of the majority of men. Help to all who need it in the astral world will also be given, help to all the souls of the backward ones who, on casting off the physical body, enter for the first time a world that is new to them; for all mankind will not be equal then any more than they are equal now. The great majority will be working self-consciously on the astral plane, but there will still be vast numbers whose consciousness will not have risen to it; the majority will be available from which to draw helpers to guide, comfort and direct all the more ignorant souls who have cast off the garment of the physical body, to do the work that only the few do now. There are great opportunities upon that plane today, for even now comfort may be brought to the souls that go thither helpless, hurried into that region full of fear; their terrors may be soothed, their minds enlightened, and in the future this blessed work will lie open to mankind for all who reach these higher possibilities of man along the line of compassion.

The Checklist If something so simple can transform intensive care, what else can it do?

The Right and Wrong of Compulsion by the State and …

But on the material plane more is asked of you than the discharge of this part of duty, right livelihood, that inures none and serves all. You have also a duty of right living that touches on the plane of the body, by which I include tonight the whole of the transitory part of man, and right living means the recognition of the influence that you bring to bear upon the world by the whole of your lower nature as well as by the higher. It implies the understanding of the duty that the body of each bears to the bodies of all, for you cannot separate your bodies from the bodies amidst which you live, since constant interchange is going on between them. Tiny lives that build up you today help to build up another tomorrow, and so the constant interaction and interweaving of these physical molecules proceed. What use do you make of your body? Do you say: “It is mine. I can do with it as I will. Shall not a man do as he will with his own?” Even so. But there is nothing a man has that is his own, for all belongs to that greater man, the aggregate humanity, and the fragments have no rights that go against the claim of service to the whole. So that you are responsible for the use that you make of your bodies. If when these tiny lives come into your charge you poison them with alcohol, you render them coarse and gross with over-luxurious living and send them out into the community of which you form a part, and send them out to other men and women and children, they sow there the seeds of the vices they have learned from you, of the gluttony, of the in­temperance, the impurity of living that you have stamped on them while they remained as part of your own body. You have no right to do it. No excuse can bear you guiltless of the crime. There are drunkards amongst us. Granted they are responsible for their crime, but also every human being is responsible for them who helps to spread the poison in a community which is focalized in those miserable creatures. And so every atom that you send out alcohol-poisoned from yourself helps to make drunkenness more permanent, helps to make its grip tighter upon the victims already in its grasp, and you are guilty of your brother’s degradation if you do not supply pure atoms of physical life to build up others who in very truth are one with yourself.