Something occurred to me the other day when I noticed the U.S. flag was at ‘half-mast’ at my workplace after yet another mass shooting that occurred here in the States. We use this tradition to honour the victims of various acts of violence or natural disasters/accidents who live in our own country, and yet we don’t bat an eye and maintain this tradition when the same type of tragedies happen in other countries.
To me, due to the levels of violence, corruption, domestic abuse, wars, famine, illness and disease that currently exist on Earth, every nation should be flying their flags at half-mast if they truly want to honour that tradition until all these issues are healed throughout the world.
What the current model shows me is that each country in the world tends to consider itself as an individual, rather than an aspect of a greater whole, which it is inextricably interwoven with and connected to, with every action that we make as a person, state, government and country having a direct effect on every other living being on the planet.
This is not to say that we should go around trying to fix everyone else’s problems when it is each person’s and country’s responsibility to work on and heal those issues that keep them from living with true wellbeing, joy and harmony. But when we become insular and look at life through the lens of ‘me and mine,’ whether it be within our own families or on the grander scale of a country, it creates a scenario where we lose touch with the innate connection, sensitivity and love we have with everyone else, which is the thing we all truly crave, and which is our natural way. This then becomes a fertile ground for calculating actions and abuse of all kinds where we justify our greedy or self-centred ways based on a belief or ideal that we just have to take care of ourselves or our immediate family, business, country, even if it means that others will be suffering as a consequence.
Another outplay of this protected way of living can be the harmful expression of supremacy, where through a judgement of one person or group (namely ‘me and mine’) being more important or better than another, there develops a mode of protection, favouritism and eventually persecution of other groups of people. It usually begins with some kind of undealt-with emotional hurt that has never been healed. This can show up within families first and then spread to work and eventually to even government policy as one aspect of life cannot be disconnected from another because everything affects everything else. This is something that tends to be overlooked, as if people’s family life has no impact on their work life, which is the same as saying, “If I remove someone’s left kidney, it won’t have any effect on the rest of their body’s physiology.”
So as long as we maintain an individualistic and nationalistic approach to the world, to me this will guarantee that there remains an ‘us and them’ attitude, which will spawn all sorts of division and eventually sustain the wars that are still so prevalent, and which really start out as the wars within ourselves when we are resisting and fighting our true nature within.
As an alternative, we could one day fly one flag for the whole planet, one that represents humanity as a unified whole. How about a flag with a picture of a beautiful multifaceted star? After all, that’s where we all come from!
There is a real irony in the way in which flags have been used for thousands of years to designate certain tribal groups and eventually whole countries. And that is because even though the intention may have been to symbolise a sense of unity and brotherhood among these groups of people, in the end it has often resulted in a classification that has actually separated people and further cemented the divisions that eventually lead to the wars previously mentioned. It’s just another way to say, “We are different to you” instead of approaching life in a way that realises that we are all the same and from the same source. Perhaps through the acceptance of this true knowingness of equality, we will someday let go of any need to mark separate lands or separate people in any way by adopting our true heritage as Universal beings.
By Michael Goodhart, Aircraft Technician, B.A. Psychology, Lover of Nature and being playful with life, North Carolina, USA
Our Diamond Within
How I Used my Mind to Protect Myself from Others
The Four Pillars of Evolution
Being True to the being we are is what life is all about, as we learn to Live in a way that brings a Harmonious life-style to all we encounter.
It is so brilliant and important to expose the devastation of ‘them and us’ wherever and however it manifests. Thank you Michael. And the great thing is that each of us can break this pattern of thinking down by the way we live.
I love the fact that we are all cells in a Universe of oneness. But yet we keep ourselves separate, thinking we are individuals. Humanity has a way to go to realise their divinity and then we can raise the flag of multifaceted stars… love that.
Much can be learnt and observed from the way a human body is biologically formed. From one cell, a zygote, millions of identical cells are formed which then differentiate and specialise into different types that form different tissues and organs. But for a body to be whole and functional, all of them have to work in perfect harmony and unity with each other. The dysfunction of missing of one affects the other and the overall function and even survival of the whole body. This is symbolic of how individualistic, nationalistic or separatist living adversely influences the entire collective of humanity as a whole. We’re all linked like cells in a body.
A touch of beautiful, brilliant, inspiring science. Thank you Long.
Thank you for another cracker of an article, Michael. There’s much that’s been raised to reflect upon.
The individualistic outplay of the self could be observed in the recent and current disharmony and lack of unity in how collectively as humanity, we are dealing with the pandemic. In any crisis, we all have the choice to align to a particular source of intelligence which will then propel us forward as a whole to truly deal with the situation at hand.
This pandemic has revealed the ease at which humanity can be induced to hysteria, the pervasive manipulation of the media, the lack of coordination and coherence and preparedness by many governments and health systems, the selfishness and radical endeavours each person can make in seemingly difficult time, and so on. A crisis is an opportunity to expose what is truly there and what is not. There are pockets of harmony and brotherhood and sanity and true love around the world but vastly speaking, they are the minority. There are understanding and acceptance and observation and surrender to the plan but on the whole, most succumb and revert to their reactive ways of living, draped in the illusion of self-honouring while drenching in the comfort of self-righteous judgement of others. It is therefore in such time when all is tested and reveal where each person is at. That’s not for condemnation, but as a chance for each person to truly reflect on their choices, alignment, evolution, movements and way of living if they surrender to it. There’s no ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, and thus no judgement or criticism can, in truth, exist. As part of our evolution and growth, we’ve been taught to ‘respond’, not ‘react’; understand from the soul-full level and not the heady mental politically-correct agreement. And if a choice doesn’t come from love, there is no truth to it.
Love this Long. The pandemic also shows us how delicate the economic system is and how we go into meltdown when our security is compromised. The reality is we are not in control and we never have been. Time to wake up now.
Who had any idea before Serge Benhayon came along as showed by his movements (a vibration) that everything we say and do is an energetic vibration and these vibrations can be felt by everyone all around the world. I certainly wasn’t taught this at school or at any other point in my life. And many people can discount this as is their choice but what if it were true what if the way we lived effected everyone else around us then surely we have a responsibility to act in a way that was non harming to ourselves and therefore non harming to everyone else.
When we are flagging we are not our full self, or we can be flagged in / highlighted when racing around a track, flag, or ensign. Our cornucopia should be our normal way of being humble ( Soul-full) in all we do, no half mast but full of the true glory we all equally are.
With more of a focus on the energetic outplay of life, I experience that we are all the same regardless of where we are on the map. With less of that energetic focus, all I see is separate humans different to me.
I have recently observed some interesting differences in country culture regarding driving. For example: The UK has a; I need to be the first attitude, London has its own rules. On any given day there are road works, breakdowns and a plethora of other reasons that require us to merge into one lane and we bully our way into the merging land, and these actions create long tailbacks. In contrast, it was refreshing recently to drive in a different country when drivers would see the ‘road works ahead’ sign, and they would fall in line like shuffled cards long before the merge and traffic flowed. Their motorways reminded me of school and playing Dodge Ball, except in steel enclosers at high speed dodging everything. When crossing the border to a different country, there are models out there of brotherhood in action. It may be small things like falling in line to help all with the flow; it is a start.
Once upon a time, we may have used the flag to express our unity of the group. Then we meet others that were different but the same and what did we do; fight, flight, enjoin, or succumb. How often did we blend and accept the others and realize we all have something to bring to the group? We have become, one for all and all for one, and all carry our own individual flag. We don’t need mountain ranges or seas to separate us as we stand packed into trains on the way to work. Do we enjoy standing in queues everywhere? Why are we comfortable standing on our small island, separating us from the 7+ billion brothers and sisters we have, in the brotherhood of man that has never required a flag.
There are so many horrendous atrocities happening every day and yet we don’t bat an eyelid. How is that even possible, and how have we arrived at this place?
We say to ourselves that we are only one person so we cannot instigate change anywhere else in the world but what if we in our own lives spoke our truth about the atrocities we witness within our own homes, workplaces and within the community. This initially feels like a big ask but the first step is calling out the ugliness to ourselves and clocking what we feel.
Imagine a flag-less society, Joy and Harmony would have to be the way we live as all self recognition and thus pride of being a certain blood line would also have disappeared.
Nationalism has raised its ugly head again more recently in the U.K.
the impact of this is far far more harming then people care to admit.
It has polarised the country into; stay, leave and don’t care anymore. It has caused us to become locked into a non-majority and moving nowhere. The country has vacillated for three years of disagreement, so, they are rolling the dice and opted to let the people reshuffle the deck. All the different groups are campaigning, so their speeches say, for the good of the country. Free-will will always leave you herding cats. Not until it becomes about everyone and not painted cloth fluttering wind going nowhere will we all move forward.
It’s clear that we as humanity need to deeply feel what true unity is, instead of just relying it on a piece of cloth that represents the different pictures many have about it but in fact doesn’t emanate union.
Unity is found first within and then, it manifests in every encounter we have with others. Any symbol we use from then on, must be a confirmation of what we already live.
When we look to the stars we are all a part of then as you have shared Michael, and we can be unified by being a part of the great universality that is offer and open to us all by reconnecting to our essences, so we open ourselves to the wisdom of the universe.
Nationalism has been the root cause of Brexit and look what an absolute mess that is.
We can take an action of lowering a flag to honour people that have been killed in mass shootings yet we can’t take the action needed to change gun laws … in America it is easier for a teenager to buy a gun than cigarettes! It would be awesome to see and have no flags but instead a true symbol of oneness as in truth we are one it is just currently we have been choosing to ignore this and instead celebrate individuality.
This is a very strong and inspiring invitation to consider our relationship with the divisive patterns we accept as normal in ourselves, our relationships with those close to us, our neighbourhoods, countries and world. There is no ‘them and us’… there is only ‘we’ and when we come to accept this things will start to change from the inside out and the ground up. Thank you Michael.
As a species, we are flagging when it comes to the truth and how we treat others. When we become Universal Beings once again, there will be no need for flags.
Also eliminating flagellation or is that flag-elation?
Flags divide and speak of pride and supremacy when these qualities are not truly innate in us but have been adopted and put on top of our innermost,
And also create a whole lot of comparison, which is a killer for our evolution or return to our “innermost,”
I love the idea of a one world flag, or planet flag Michael. It occurred to me that if we did lower our flags to half mast for every disaster in the world they would be permanently lowered and then it would be revealed to all what a mess we have all collectively got ourselves into. The one flag for all would then be part of the process of combining our energies to work together towards a common purpose, to heal ourselves and our communities and our international relations.
“we will someday let go of any need to mark separate lands or separate people in any way by adopting our true heritage as Universal” glorious Micheal, I wait for that day.
‘ in the end it has often resulted in a classification that has actually separated people and further cemented the divisions that eventually lead to the wars previously mentioned’.
When I see flags I just see a group of people trying to encompass their identity within a border of definitions of what it is to belong. But we are so much greater than any definition, any declaration of what it is to be British or whatever. So much awfulness comes of the separations. I hear the awful abuse of people who are from Mexico being rounded up and put into holding pens in the US, children being abused and dying. But still people are supporting the government. This is just one example of the abuse nationalism can incite and sanction.
I too have been hearing of the most vile abuse of people who are from Mexico trying to get across the border into America, how women are being denied the possibility of abortion even if they have been raped. There is huge discrimination over the colour of someone’s skin. American Indians are being denied the right to vote. It seems to me that America is turning into a dictatorship and if this happens we are all responsible for the consequences because we are all sitting on the fence watching it happen and as long as it is happening to someone else it doesn’t seem to matter to us as the individual. This is how negative energy can take control because it encourages and plays to our sense of being separate from each other.
If a flag denotes segregation of any kind then it represents a lie, which is pretty awful when you consider how many times we wave flags in supposed celebration.
If we were open to changing the landscape of mass shootings, domestic violence, depression – you name it really, anything that has been in the headlines, we would look at the momentum that has got us to those end results and consider our part in not addressing the contributing factors in our own lives. They are our brothers and sisters, we should be paying attention to it all.
We are the Ones putting the wheels in motion for future events. We the collective people are responsible, not the relatively small numbers who actually end up pulling the pin or the trigger. By living disconnected lives, embroiled in pranic consciousness we are energetically loading the cannons that will one day be fired. It’s us, we are doing it here, there and everywhere, we are imbibing the prana that will eventually be spewed out as a horrific incident. Prana is prana, it is the substance that fuels everything that goes against the grain of God and we’re all drinking it in like there’s no tomorrow.
I would definitely agree that all of our problems from the small scale to larger global scale from environmental to social and economic stem from separation and division amongst human beings.
Yes. Me too. And when we consider the difference between unity and division it is a stark exposé of our choices as a race so far.
If you asked many of us we probably would cite flags and our nations as helping us unite. Yet the fact is as you show Michael is they just cement factions and the concept of difference. How many aspects of our lives do we settle for such poor substitutes for the grandness of the truth?
Flags are such a game, they look like they are uniting us to a common cause, but separate people against people and brother against brother. The name of the game we play is the antithesis of truth.
Whilst we see the evidence of separation in the statement of flying a Flag there is separation happening all the time in the many ways we treat each other from intimidating looks, ignoring some standing next to you or simply judging another on dress, body weight or skin colour. The tradition in flying the flags is a reflection of the lack of acceptance and appreciation of what we all share in the essence of who we are.
Flags and patriotism make me feel slightly queazy. There’s a hardness and a slight aggression about them both. There’s an ‘us and them’ mentality, an ‘I’m prepared to fight for my country’ undertone or rather a blatant overtone. An ‘I will kill another brother in order to defend my piece of land’ attitude. Flags and patriotism are completely false and arbitrary markers that indicate that we’ve strayed a very long way from the truth. Truth tells us very clearly that there are no delineations in land or even between people, we are the one people of God living on the same planet and that is how we need to live and operate, as the collective and cohesive whole that we are.
The other day a couple of language students stopped me in the street to survey what people felt were typical British characteristics. They were so disappointed when I was unable to offer them what they wanted to hear, as to me we are all the same and to try and label ourselves as this or that is totally reductionist.
Ha ha I can imagine what you had to say was not at all what they hoped to hear but I bet you make it into their future conversations – outliers often give us some of the best insights into human behaviour. Wouldn’t it be good if your exchange simply offered a moment of consideration.
Epic blog way ahead of its time thank you Michael. I completely agree that any conflicts large or small that we experience on the outside all come from the seed of inner conflict that is unresolved for one or both parties.
Have flags ever brought unity … true unity with all? From reflecting on your blog what I can feel is a flag ‘represents’
a certain group of people but not inclusive to all in the world. So then no, they do not bring unity especially if its about one group of people against another! Or one group feeling they are better than another or one group just looking after themselves and not wanting anything else to do with another or be part of another. An awesome blog bringing out discussion on something we probably never really talk about.
So adapt and disturbing that at the time of you writing this Britain is going through Brexit one of the most foolish and harmful things in the History of Britain.
Why aren’t we questioning the protection, arrogance and defensiveness that nationalism brings? Why do we need to define ourselves differently or to see our country as the best, and other nationalities as dangerous? It’s odd really that we have developed nationalism at such a high degree worldwide and missed seeing how similar we all are. To me nationalism is very tribal, it often automatically assumes threat and its foundation is protection and division. A one unified humanity is very needed and possible.
Our government here in the U.S. has over the last 80 years or so continually created a ‘boogie man’to fear- first it was Communists and the countries that support it, then terrorists and the Muslim-based countries that we were told harbor them; all justifying decades long wars all across the globe and an arrogance that says we are better here because we have democracy. But who are the real terrorists in these actions, as millions have died as a result of these policies of separation and perceived threats. In the end it is up to us to feel that this way is not the Truth and not to support these policies of fear.
When we all get reconnected to each other and become universal beings, there will no longer be a need for flags.
Great Article Michael, it should be possible for us all to take note of what you have shared and share it world wide so people get to understand we are actually all the same.
So much to ponder on here as to the degrees of separation that confront us when we arrive in this world. From family, to neighbourhood, city, to region to country, the world is separated into so many different parts that it doesn’t take to long for us to start to believe that it’s all about ‘them and us’, that we are meant to be living apart from everyone else. Well it’s obvious that living like this only ever causes dissensions and possibly in the worst instant, wars, so the concept of coming to live under ‘one flag’ is one concept that is not something to be ignored; after all we are in truth one big universal family.
We cannot truly want this because otherwise the so called ‘smartest brains’ would have thought of this by now.
When you really feel it, like stop and consider every human being on the planet, there really is no ‘them and us’ – any belief that there is is a mental construct to justify past behaviours and atrocities towards one another. Let’s clear the slate, actually learn from our mistakes, and live beyond any thought of ‘them and us’ in any situation… be it at work, between countries, within families and communities… anything.
‘As an alternative, we could one day fly one flag for the whole planet, one that represents humanity as a unified whole.’ This makes total sense to me – the separatism that generates competition and violence never has.
Borders and frontiers, straight lines across our globe, are utterly alien to where we come from, an imposition on our true nature and on the planet we live on.
This is possibly irrelevant, but as an awareness of the few times that in past years we have travelled through some of the lower 48 states and through parts of Alaska, the evidence of huge flags flying on poles almost on each and every home, shop, apartment block, business building, institutions such as schools, churches etc. etc. – and I have often pondered is that so the folks of America are reminded of the separateness of their country from the rest of the world, or perhaps to remind ones that they are indeed of a certain and specific nationality and feel the need to be reminded of same. This intense evidence of allegiance I have not necessarily noticed in any other country that we have visited. Just wondering. I really enjoyed this article, and the content leaves much to reflect upon in these days of understanding our humanity a little more deeply.
I travelled to America when I was 21 and I felt very unsettled by the amount of flags I saw outside people’s homes. To me, the separatism, supremacy and nationalism this engendered felt dangerous and isolating – both for the Americans who flew them and for the rest of the world who were negated by this.
I agree Michelle, flags often feel like a statement, one that has separatism at it’s core. National pride is seen as a good thing but it’s not, it has a hardness and an arrogance about it that keeps others out. National pride often lacks understanding and empathy for others and can easily contain a ‘if you don’t like it then go back to where you came from’ attitude.
We border ourselves off from others which is why we’re able to border our geographical locations off from one another. In actual fact what we’re saying is ‘I end here and you start there’ or ‘my country stops here and your country starts there’ but neither of these sentences are true, every- thing belongs to the one body of God.
It’s like the imaginary border lines and different nationalistic flags are representing an arrogance and ignorance that says “We know better and have it all figured out over here” and is a way for people to not take responsibility but instead continue on their self-centered path of doing what gives only them security and comfort while thinking that we are not all equal to those from other countries that bear differing cultures, religions or customs, which couldn’t be further from the truth. A real irony exists here, as even in the Declaration of Independence it states: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…”
We really are fooling ourselves if we believe that our life can be compartmentalized into little boxes of ‘family’ ‘work’ ‘hobbies’ etc. You can’t switch parts of life off they all act as a momentum gatherer for the next part of life we experience. So why not develop a loving momentum that will then propel you into the next moment?
I love the one flag for whole planet Michael, makes simple sense and represents humanity as ‘one unified whole.’
The excuse is made that flying flags is an act of patriotism for ones country. A great idea to have a flag for the world- for we are all united and come from the same source.
“As an alternative, we could one day fly one flag for the whole planet, one that represents humanity as a unified whole. How about a flag with a picture of a beautiful multifaceted star? After all, that’s where we all come from!” Michael I absolutely love this, I could feel my whole body opening when I read your suggestion.
“What the current model shows me is that each country in the world tends to consider itself as an individual, rather than an aspect of a greater whole, which it is inextricably interwoven with and connected to, with every action that we make as a person, state, government and country having a direct effect on every other living being on the planet.” Yes. When we hear the news about a tragedy here in the UK, despite people from various nations being killed reference is always made to how many British have died – the same mentality of individualism – me me.
This individualism is causing mayhem in the UK at present as many do not see this country as part of the greater whole of Europe. They are striving to separate themselves from the shared flag displaying many stars. It is causing divisions and arguments between individuals, groups, families and our Government has lost sight of the responsibility to care for everyone as they have been polarised around a single issue of ‘me first’.
The more we celebrate separation the more we will have war and seeing as I haven’t met anyone who says war is good, perhaps we should take a step back and start with not championing separation.
As you say it is not only ‘each country in the world tends to consider itself as an individual, rather than an aspect of a greater whole’ it is that we pretty much live this way too (and of course it makes sense if we live this way, in our own bubble, then the ripple affect is going to be that the country/world does too!). The other irony is that after so many mass shootings the only thing that seems to be done is a flag is raised at half-mast, not way stricter gun rules put in place and guns being actually removed from people. I remember watching an experiment that was done in America where a young person went into a shop and asked for cigarettes and was refused because of his age, he then went into a second shop and asked for alcohol and the shop assistant refused him saying something like ‘oh honey I can’t do that you are way to young’, he went into a third shop and asked to see and buy a gun and was given one!!! Says it all really, including that there are actual shops you can walk into to buy guns.
So true Vicky, the laws in the U.S. are ridiculously lenient and almost anyone can buy a gun or assault rifle. The interesting thing is that just the other day I came across a video online that talked about how the country of Switzerland has relatively high gun ownership but has virtually no mass shootings because of their advanced and very thorough gun regulations, education, and laws
Just as the U.S. tends to focus on itself as if the world revolves around it, perhaps this is why we have not been able to look to other countries that have simple approaches to things like gun violence with amazing effectiveness compared to the staggering amount of shootings and mass deaths in America.
There’s a strong urge in many societies to enforce separateness, and regrettably this can persist into old age. In one elder village community comprised of owner occupiers, care home residents, other rental occupants and staff, those who have paid for their properties have insisted on being called ‘owners’ to distinguish themselves from those who live in rental accommodation or work there. It now has an ‘owners’ committee, ‘owners social evenings’ and ‘owners’ car park. One community, many separate identities. Using the generic term resident is inclusive, ‘owners’ creates an us and them and smacks of supremacy. When we put people into boxes based on economic, social status or other criteria, we close the door to accepting and seeing all people as equal and from one source.
The kind of intelligence that allows this is definitely skewed. Allowing it run the show means that we will be flying flags at half mast for a long time yet. The kind of compassion that impulses the flag at half mast needs to be brought to bear, not only in the policies that govern a country, but in the day to day livingness of us all so that we are not generating a society where mass shootings are the common outplay of lost and hurt individuals – the consequence of which we created and is the responsibility of us all.
That is gun-a make you very angry, as this is normal and needs to change, the same as what Michael shared life musts alter from the grass roots up, so share as we all should be on the same page.
So true what you are saying here Vicky, in that every aspect of the way we are living has so much power to effect those around us, even on the scale of a country and eventually the whole world. Another thing that came to me is how the consciousness that makes it so common for our society in the U.S. to only lower the flag to half-mast when something horrible happens here rather than overseas is the same as the one that will justify going to war with another nation over a perceived difference in culture, religion, or equality, when in fact we should all be treated as equals no matter where our geographical location lies. I also recently came across an article on the internet that indicated that even though the country of Switzerland has high gun ownership and recreational shooting is popular, they have a history of almost no mass shootings and gun violence at large is extremely low compared to the U.S. due to their gun education, training, laws and regulations. Now, I am not advocating guns or recreational shooting by any means but this is quite interesting and I feel there is even something deeper to look at here about the way people are living in Switzerland compared to the U.S. that results in these kinds of statistics. Since the Sandy Hook mass shooting in 2012 where 20 school children were killed, there have been 2167 mass shootings in the U.S. alone. That is a staggering number and should be a wake up call to how we are living and dealing with the stresses of life.
The golden rule of those with the gold make the rules, describes the lobbyists in the US, they have a large hand on the wheel that drives the country. The list is long and the Tobacco producers were one of the big ones. The Gunmakers, Pharmaceutical manufacturers, Oil companies and even Sugar has a powerful sway over the government. Whenever we put self and profit first there will always be a world of us and them. Companies also have flags.
That is interesting Michael, there is something deeper to understand if we truly want an end to the atrocities we see around the globe.