<![CDATA[Ray Writes! - Ray's Journal]]>Sat, 21 Apr 2018 11:13:36 -0400Weebly<![CDATA[The Possibility for World War III]]>Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:47:40 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/the-possibility-for-world-war-iiiPicture
The possibilities for World War III in news and in prophecy.

World War III seems imminent, so I feel like I need to say something about it. I am prompted by the alleged chemical weapons attack in the Syrian town of Douma last April 6, and the Trump administration’s responding missile attack. Because these events resonate with a scenario described by commentator and seer John Hogue in a couple of his ebooks and several articles I’ve read, I took notice.

In an article for the Global Research website, shortly after the alleged attack, journalist Tony Cartalucci says:

To date, all supposed evidence comes from Western-funded militants and their auxiliaries including the US-European government-funded front, the so-called “Syria Civil Defense,” better known at the “White Helmets.” Unverified photographs and video of apparent victims have been the sole sources cited by the US.

The alleged attack was followed by tweets from POTUS Trump about the horrors inflicted by “Animal Assad” on his people and that the US retains the option to retaliate militarily, etc. The “retaliation” did happen on April 14, when the US launched over 100 missiles into Syria to hit alleged chemical weapons manufacturing sites. A smaller strike was carried out by Israel on April 16.

I keep saying “alleged” because, from the start, this was all suspected to be another false-flag operation designed to provide an excuse for the US to strike Syria. In the weeks since, independent journalists have visited Douma and not only found no evidence of a chemical attack, but plenty of evidence that the “white helmets” staged the whole thing (they seem to be the media production division of Al-Qaeda/ISIS). See these reports from Robert Fisk and  Pearson Sharp.

Why would the US do this? Why would any nation do such a thing? False-flags have a long and sorry history, and they’re done because they are effective at manipulating populations. They helped launch many  US wars, including the Spanish-American war, Vietnam, and the Iraq-Afghanistan actions (I’m counting the 9-11 event of 2001 as a FF). 

And conquering Syria is a major goal for US rulers. They will not give it up easily. As Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, President of the International Movement for a Just World, says:

Defeat in Syria is more than defeat in one Arab state. It portends a significant shift in the power balance in the entire region. Russia may well emerge as the pivot of this change with crucial roles for Iran and Syria and other players. It is a scenario that is totally unacceptable to the US and its allies like Britain and France.

There are two views of this situation that I believe are especially valid and worthy of consideration. 

The first is from Dmitry Orlov, a Russian expatriate who writes often in his blog about the world situation, the US and global collapse, and Russia’s place in it all. He sees the the Douma chemical attack and “retaliation” as impotent throws from the waning US empire. Impotent, in the sense of accomplishing anything to continue US world dominance, though such actions are devastatingly deadly for the common people that get in the way. Mr. Orlov believes this action will continue the misery spread from the US empire death throes but will not lead to World War. You can find his blog post on the matter here.

The other significant voice speaking about this event is John Hogue, the prophecy scholar, political commentator, and prolific writer of many ebooks I’ve Ray-Viewed. He sees this event as being presaged by the Great American Eclipse of last year and foretold in prophecies written down by Nostradamus and other historic seers. He believes it is very likely the fulfillment of prophecies that say WWIII will be launched by the actions of minion nations and entities pulling their powerful clients into a world-decimating fight. He provides details in two ebooks: A New Cold War and  Trump Strikes Syria and North Korea?. I’ve Ray-Viewed the Trump Strikes Syria book. [APP page]  You can find Mr. Hogue’s article about the attack here

Mr. Orlov tends to be cynical and writes cleverly about such world events. Mr. Hogues tends to dig into the facts and offer commentary based on his research, highlighted by related prophetic insight. He also tends to be accurate. But prophecy is not written in stone, despite popular belief to the contrary. Though prophecy, as interpreted by Mr. Hogue, leaves us with little time before the start of WWIII, it is also possible that it can be averted, if enough people wake up to the reality of our situation.

There are many YouTube channels and blogs out there by people aware and talking about world events without being taken in by mainstream media propaganda. I just fear its a spit in the ocean.

For a good overview of the current situation in Syria, along with a debunking of the popular lies about it, see this article by Chris Kanthan. 

Peoples’ bubbles are such that I’ve heard nobody around me even mention this latest “chemical attack” or the potentially horrific consequences of Trump administration actions. If your bubble is bursting you can close your eyes and it will reform. But if something prompts you to see what lies in the wider world, you can start with the links I’ve provided in this post.

God help us all.

<![CDATA[One Third High-Tech Weapons; Two Thirds Caring for Citizens]]>Sat, 03 Mar 2018 22:23:07 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/one-third-high-tech-weapons-one-third-caring-for-citizensPicture
Vladimir Putin’s recent speech shines light on reality—if you read it!

Prompted by the latest newsletter from John Hogue, I looked up the text of the recent speech Vladimir Putin gave to the Russian Federal Assembly (the Russian Parliament). Mr. Hogue was concerned about something President Putin declared in this speech that Mr. Hogue believes has significance for our immediate future. He says he gleaned from the speech, “...a whole new understanding of what could happen either 3 years and seven months, or 13 years from this day, according to the prophecies of Nostradamus I've been tracking for four years. “

Mr. Hogue didn’t reveal exactly what Putin said that brought about his great insight, so I had to check it out for myself. A Google search quickly found the the speech’s complete text and I promptly read it. I was impressed. It wasn’t hard to find the part that so affected Mr. Hogue.

In a nutshell, President Putin presented an advanced military capability, including nuclear, that invalidates, and makes obsolete, the ring of missiles the US/NATO has placed around Russia. He backed his statements up with video showing the weapons’ capabilities. The mainstream media (CNN, MSNBC, etc) are calling the speech “bluster” and “feet stomping” and “boasting.” If you read the speech, you’ll see that it’s none of that.

While the weapons capabilities Mr. Putin describes should cause any potential attackers to consider their plans carefully, it was the first two-thirds of the speech that impressed me. There was none of the bombast and national chauvinism we get from American politicians. The language was intelligent and centered on the things the Russian government needs to do to make life better for the Russian people. Here’s a few quotes:

I believe that the main, key development factor is the well-being of the people and the prosperity of Russian families. 

Today, 20 million Russian nationals live in poverty. Of course, this is much fewer than the 42 million people in 2000, but it is still way too many. 

We need to upgrade the employment structure that has become inefficient and archaic, provide good jobs that motivate people, improve their well-being and help them uncover their talents. 

…we must raise pensions and index them regularly, so that they out-pace inflation. 

Today, we must set an entirely new goal. By the end of the next decade, Russia must confidently join the club of countries posting a life expectancy of 80-plus years, which includes Japan, France and Germany. 

That last one really blew me away. Imagine a national government being so concerned with its citizens’ life expectancy that it sets increasing it as a national goal! 

The tone and specifics of this speech are just so far beyond what we ever hear from our political “leaders.” What we hear is “make America great again” without specifics. Apparently America is made great by cutting taxes for the richest and raising them for the poorest. 

I can’t say how much of what Mr. Putin says is sincere. I do believe he works for the Russian people far more than our politicians (at least at the upper federal level) work for us. For the most of his speech, Mr. Putin talks about getting Internet access to every region of Russia, maintaining healthcare and pensions for Russia’s elderly, ensuring accessibility to education for Russia’s children, and such like. All this is over two-thirds of the speech while the military part is the last third. It seems to indicate Russian priorities.

Paul Craig Roberts (former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury under President Ronald Reagan) has published an article that is an excellent overview of President Putin’s speech and puts it in what I believe is the proper context of world events and US policy. 

I recommend that you read the entirety of Putin’s speech and decide for yourself whether Russia is an aggressor, or is being pushed into a (really strong) defensive posture. I’ll point you to whatever Mr. Hogue comes up with. See the links below.
* * *

You can find the whole of President Putin’s speech here.
You can find Paul Craig Roberts article about Putin’s speech here.

<![CDATA[The Pre-Apocalypse]]>Sat, 27 Jan 2018 18:00:04 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/the-pre-apocalypsePicture
My reading list this year, so far, is darker and more nonfiction than I had intended.

I can’t get away from reading some really dark stuff—post-apocalypse novels, nonfiction about the Deep State, our dystopian reality, geoengineering, and alternate news sources that follow the corruption and abuses of our political leaders. It mostly comes, I think, from a desire to know the truth of things and to not be blind-sided by events. What I find revealed in such study, though, are horrors difficult to accept and too big to fight. Or maybe I do fight, in my own way. Maybe the darkness repels me towards the light, and I seek solace in writing, exercise, and spiritual enlightenment. My wife supports me in this. Maybe you have similar feelings. If so, I hope you have some human support, too.

Well, all this has colored my recent readings, which have concerned societal collapse, the world’s dark realities, and spiritual themes.  I haven’t posted reviews on all of them yet, but I will do so and you can follow them on the Arbordin Park Press website. I hope you will find some enlightenment and comfort from my work.

I’ll begin with a fiction. It’s an award-winning post-apocalypse novel called, Station Eleven, by Emily St. John Mandel. Though the book has its dark moments, it is a more hopeful take on its genre than is the usual. It depicts the coming collapse, but with a belief in the ultimate goodness of humanity that outweighs our Mad Maxx proclivities. I’m not that optimistic myself, but I did enjoy that aspect of Ms. Mandel’s story. I also enjoyed the love of the arts that runs through its pages. I took its hopeful theme as a reminder that people can be compassionate, even under difficult circumstances, and that we of the rank-and-file are better than our rulers.

Then there’s another literary thread I’ve been following that deals with our dark reality that will lead to collapse, if not to some dystopian horror beyond what even Orwell imagined. The first book in this vein is Chemtrails, HAARP, and the Full Spectrum Dominance of Planet Earth by Elana Freeland. This book describes the magnitude of the assaults being unleashed on the human populace by their rulers. These assaults include the wielding of Tesla-based technology that weaponizes Earth’s natural energy systems (we see it as constant chemtrail haze, highly selective “wild fires,” and extreme weather events), the spread of health-damaging low frequency radiation (WiFi), and even the mind-blowing, apparently real, concept of transhumanism (or maybe not so hard to believe—the Nazis wanted very much to create Aryan “supermen”). 

Ms. Freeland tells her tale in clear prose, ably handling complex concepts. I found her book so compelling, I started reading her fiction-based-on-fact series about the modern rise of our fascist, neopagan ruling class. The first book in the series is called, SUB ROSA AMERICA and  The Fall  of the New Atlantis Book I: Gone to Croatan. It is not an easy read but does offer much to consider about the nature of the upper-upper classes who rule us and who seek to control us to the microscopic level (along with all aspects of our home planet).

I find Ms. Freeland’s work much related to that of Richard Dolan, whose UFOs and the National Security State books also deal with the secrecy and corruption of our ruling elites. I have reviewed these books of Mr. Dolan’s, and I intend to review another he put out last year: UFOs and Disclosure in the Trump Era. I think his concept of the “Breakaway Civilization” is especially relevant to understanding what’s happening to our world, and it supports the premises of Ms. Freeland’s books.

And then I read the latest book from Whitley Strieber called, The Afterlife Revolution. I think it’s his most compelling work since Communion. It concerns what Mr. Strieber has learned about souls and the nature of reality over the course of his life of paranormal experiences. A lot of that learning came from his wife and co-author, Anne, who died in 2015. It is an inspiring and hopeful book that helps sustain morale in these dark times.

You can see that I’ve done a lot of reading. I had hoped for it to be more of a literary vein, but a fascination with the bizarre nature of world events has kept me in the non-fiction arena. Even so, my writing has continued in the post-apocalypse SF mode and I’m pushing on with my Dentville novel. I hope to pull that to completion this year.

So you can see that I have a number of book reviews to post in the coming months, and I’m sure I’ll also be posting movie reviews. I might also get into a creative writing exercise that I’ll share either through posts on the Arbordin blog or maybe in newsletter issues. This would be mostly of interest to writers, which is basically anyone with an interest in expressing themselves via the written word—my kind of people.
* * *

You can find my review of Station Eleven here.

<![CDATA[A Positive Start]]>Sun, 07 Jan 2018 14:02:01 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/a-positive-startPicture
​A new start in an old interest.

Buddhism interests me from way back. I like the practicality of it, with its emphasis on changing your life through better thinking, meditation, and personal insight. It has, I think, the potential for opening a person up to broad spiritual vistas. It even has numbered steps to reaching happiness: four Nobel Truths and an eightfold path. I also have become convinced, after years of reading on the subject, that meditation is a key to spiritual development and to effective living for an individual. This conviction has grown for me in the last couple of years that my wife and I have put such a big emphasis on physical fitness.

You see, we reached that point in our lives where getting fit reached a "now or never" point and so we joined a local fitness club (MUV). Following a program of taking various fitness classes and using personal trainers, we both reached a level of physical fitness we haven't had in a long time (or, never, in my case). Though the effort is hard work, it's better than being fat and constantly fatigued. I've been so amazed at the results, that I thought again about supplementing physical fitness with mental and spiritual fitness.

What I want is some instruction in meditating in the same way we found instruction and guidance for our physical work-outs. Over the years, I’ve done some book-studying on the subject and reached the point where I can easily enter the state of "remembering myself" (watching myself at the same time I'm watching everything around me) and can even do a traditional meditation of concentrating on my breathing. Self-remembering has been especially helpful, but I haven't made it a regular part of my life. I haven't reached the point of maintaining the state and going to deeper levels to find the insight and release I believe to be there. I need professional help.

So I made a Google search for meditation classes in my area and it returned a hit on a Buddhist Meditation Center within two miles of my house. It's the Kadampa Meditation Center and it offers classes for a fee comparable to fitness clubs. Recently, they put on a free public talk at the State Museum entitled, "The Art of Positive Thinking." We decided to attend.

Donna and I arrived at the museum on a Tuesday night, already tired from work and work-outs, but determined to give this thing a try. We were greeted at the door by smiling members of the Meditation Center who directed us to where the talk was being held. We climbed a set of stairs (open to the center of the spacious museum building) to find the specified meeting room. We signed in and took seats in uncomfortable chairs among a group of about 80 people making up the audience.

It was mostly an older group--a lot of apparent retirees such as the members of my writing group. Like me, I suppose, these were people who had reached the last quarter of life, wanting to find some real spiritual connection during this time when they are free of a full-time job. Of course, I’m still constrained by a full-time job, but I'm determined to not let that stop me.

The staff were friendly and did not pounce on us—asking why we were there or trying to get us to sign up for anything, or try to push any books on us (though they did have a table with a few books on it). I was encouraged.

At the top of the hour, the speaker arrived. She was a Buddhist nun, recently moved to Columbia from Florida. A smiling, mature woman with closely cropped hair and wearing glasses, she took a seat on a dais behind a large microphone and greeted us in a warm, soft voice.

She began by guiding the audience through a simple breathing meditation. She gave no instruction as to the form, other than saying we should bring our awareness to our breaths. So I shifted into self-rememberance and observed my breath. She offered a few words of calm guidance for a couple of minutes and then instructed us to release.

She then began her talk, which was basically about letting go of annoyances and angers, and adopt a positive attitude. She supported this with examples (like the positive and negative attiudes she recently observed at a Waffle House) and with some quotes from Gautama Buddha and from her own guru. 

Now this talk may sound simplistic, but that's the nature of Buddhism—profundity in simplicity. It's also its attraction and strength. I think the talk could have been entitled "The Art of Skillful Thinking" and that is the slant the nun took. Skillful (or “right”) thinking is a part of Buddha's eightfold path to happiness (which is skillful application of: Understanding, Thinking, Speech, Action, Livelihood, Effort, Mindfulness, and Concentration). Assimilating the path into your life is the work of Buddhism facilitated by certain tools, the chief of which is meditation. 

I can't say the talk produced any great insights for me, though I enjoyed it and appreciated the congenial and nonthreatening atmosphere. It confirmed my anticipation of what an introductory Buddhist talk would be, and I found that encouraging. My wife also seemed to enjoy it to the point that she was interested in reading about Buddhist concepts. I referred her to a book in my library: Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness: Walking the Buddha's Path by Bhante Gunaratana. We have also downloaded a free Kindle book suggested at the talk: How to Transform Your Life: A Blissful Journey by Geshe Kelsang Gyatso.

And so we begin 2018 with another new start. We’ll attend some classes at the Kadampa Center and see where they lead us. There are indications on the Kadampa website that they offer some deep teaching in Buddhist thought and meditation. My primary interest is meditation. I'll let you know how it goes.

<![CDATA[A New Hope, Still]]>Sun, 31 Dec 2017 14:05:01 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/a-new-hope-stillPicture
2017 Year’s End reflections…

We’ve made it through Christmas and reached the New Years holiday weekend. It’s a good time for reviewing the past year and anticipating the coming one. It’s punctuated for me in having seen the latest Star Wars movie last weekend (on Christmas day). For me, that movie ended the Star Wars saga by ending Luke Skywalker’s story. Inspired by that story when I was twenty, I’ve lived to see the completion of it. It wasn’t as well-done as it should have been. I thought the movie was way-too corporate without the vision of George Lucas to inspire it. I’ve posted my review here.

Overall, 2017 has been tragic for the wider world while there were good moments for myself and my family. That is a duality worth noting—the macro vs the micro, the personal vs the global. The oligarchs have blustered and thundered, threatening war, despoiling the planet, and presenting a sorry theatre to us even as they fight among themselves in ways, and for reasons, we’ll likely never know. It is in the eddies that form out of those storms where we can seek our own solace and find our truest views of reality.

My wife and I began this year with several hikes, taken whenever (completely manipulated) weather permitted. There is an inspiration in that, speaking to the journey of life and so I can’t seem to get away from doing it. Our best hike of the year was probably Poinsett Trails, and the last was an unexpected pleasure made at Three Rivers Greenway. Hiking remains an inspiration and I hope to continue it in the coming year, maybe carrying it to a higher level.

My reading year has been inspirational as well. In fact, I posted quite a few book reviews and still have a back-log to work on. Most of what I read in 2017 was nonfiction and reflected my concerns with the disintegrating state of the world, both politically and naturally. I seek to understand what’s happening, why, and how to cope with it. 

Two books, especially, are helpful for gaining insight into the state of things. One is UFOs and the National Security State: The Cover-Up Exposed, 1973-1991, by Richard Dolan. Though centered on the UFO phenomenon, it reveals the workings of the Deep State and how it exists as a supra-government manipulating the visible one that offers only the barest pretense of democracy. It seems appropriate I began the year with a review of Mr. Dolan’s books, since the year is ending with a “confession” by the Pentagon that they have carried on investigations of UFOs for many years after Project Blue Book was terminated.

The other big book for understanding the world’s state is Shrinking the Technosphere by Dmitry Orlov. Though Mr. Orlov’s tone can, at times, be flippant, I think the concept he describes as “The Technosphere” goes a long way towards explaining why a lot of things happen, politically, as they do. It also provides insight into the trends I see popping up on the IT horizon (like the aggrandizing of Artificial Intelligence engines that enable software robots). 

Fictional works also provide insight into current events. Indeed, I believe that to be a fundamental reason we tell each other stories. I’ve read two such fictions this year that offer such insight. I’ve only reviewed one of them at this time. That one was On the Beach by Nevil Shute. Though it’s a story from the 1950s, it’s basic premise remains so totally relevant. The other fiction is Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. It takes a different slant on post-apocalypse fiction and is brilliantly done. Its value, to me, is what it says about retaining our humanity in the face of civilization’s collapse.

And then I reviewed several of John Hogue’s books. He put out a lot of ebooks over the year (in addition to much writing on his website—he is quite a prolific writer) and his themes concern this watershed time for humanity as pointed out by many prophets in history. He brings a scholar’s light to these prophecies as well as an Eastern spirituality offered to help us cope. His writing is unique in that regard and his latest book (as of this writing) is a good example: A Spiritual Rebel's Manifesto: Climb Aboard the Noah's Ark of Consciousness.

As I said, there are several book reviews I have still under draft. One is Chemtrails, HAARP, and the Full Spectrum Dominance of Planet Earth by Elana Freeland, that was an eye-opener for me, though it took a couple of readings to open my eyes. I’ve followed a thread from this book that is even more insightful and terrifying as to the operations of the oligarchs that truly run the world. I’ll post that review in the coming weeks, and pick up the next book by Ms. Freeland on this subject: Under an Ionized Sky: From Chemtrails to Space Fence Lockdown.

You can see all my Amazon reviews by going to this link. You can also go here to see the most recent ones, including some movie reviews, and even sign up for my newsletter and so get further alerts to new reviews, insights, and notes on my authorial happenings.

I present this blog as a journal and as such, I include incidents and personal happenings that I think might provide readers some insight or inspiration. An example is the solar eclipse of last August. The shadow of totality passed over the continental US and right over my city of residence (Columbia, SC). Because it was a rare occurrence, and because prophetic and spiritual energies followed it, I devoted several journal entries to “The Great American Eclipse.” I still think of it as a herald, even more so than the turning of the millennium or the passing of 12/21/2012. You can find my journal entry describing my experience of the day of totality, here.  

Overall, 2017 for me was a year beginning with anguish over the state of the world, proceeding to even deeper insights as to the hopelessness of things, to inspirations helping me to cope, and a possible way forward in that coping. 

My wife and I have gained much in our journey to regain as much physical fitness as we can at this time of our lives. I made a journal entry about that in 2016 (see Fit). At this point, we want to build upon that foundation with some deliberate challenging activities (hiking, rafting, etc). We also want to investigate the potential for spiritual health from meditating and learning about classic Eastern views of life and spirituality. We are even considering a pilgrimage, of sorts. I’ll write about these journeys and our discoveries in this journal.

In the original Star Wars film, there is a scene where Luke Skywalker stares out across the desert of his home planet at its setting double suns and contemplates his future. There is a corresponding scene in The Last Jedi where he makes such a contemplation as a much older man. I can relate to that. This is an important point of life, we see where we’ve come from and review it in an attempt to understand and appreciate the distance we’ve traveled. 

We are not done. Even now, we can look ahead with anticipation. Understanding the gravity of life, we also understand the grounding of love, how strength comes from within, how we can take all we’ve learned as our firm foundation of mastery; and so we continue to live, life upon life, even in the face of evil, with joy.

<![CDATA[River Walking]]>Fri, 22 Dec 2017 21:06:33 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/river-walkingPicture
Taking a restorative walk into the long Christmas weekend.

Three Rivers Greenway Trail is a paved, well-kept walkway along the southern bank of the Congaree River on the outskirts of Columbia, SC. On the eve of the 2017 Christmas holiday weekend, Donna and I decided to take a morning stroll there.

The trail is within a couple of miles of our home and reputed to be a scenic, easy hike. We found it to be just that, with some historical markers and placards that I found reminiscent of the Natchez Trace Parkway in Mississippi. Overall, the weather was temperate (around 53F), though with heavy chem-trailing, and with plenty of sunshine (though glarey, as always, through the chem-trail haze). The trail is an out-and-back about 4.7 miles long. We decided to make about a 3 miler out of it by turning back at about 1.5 miles. 

The main trailhead is right beside the Gervais Street Bridge and the site includes an amphitheater, where events are sometimes held, and a replica of the trading post buildings that dotted the river banks in the nineteenth century. It’s a neat little area and makes for a pleasant start of a hike.

It is an easy hike, being pavement or boardwalk for the entire length. There are plenty of resting spots with benches and tables. Several are on river overlooks, so contemplative lunches or picnics are possibilities. It seems to be a popular dog-walking trail and is, considering, kept clean.

It’s been a while since we’ve taken a good hike, though this wasn’t a wilderness trail, for sure. It did remind me of what’s enjoyable and restorative about hiking. There’s the physical challenge of just testing your fitness against the hardships of the trail. This trail offered few hardships—potentially only the length, but not even that for this trip. Normally, though, the rigors of a hike through woods over rough terrain with significant elevation changes will confirm that you still live. Moving through the outdoors, unmitigated by electronics, is almost a revolutionary act these days. Communing with the natural world, cooperating rather than conquering Nature, is a human necessity. It is for me and I have to do it, from time-to-time. 

It seems few cooperate with Nature anymore. Indeed, it seems few are even aware of Her. We passed a couple of young people on the trail who were totally absorbed in their smart-phones. Even older walkers seemed so distracted with conversation, or their dogs, that they never looked up, or even looked around themselves. At least they gave that impression. Just do the walk; follow the pavement and go. Git ‘er done. 

Understandable, I guess. There’s much risk in looking up. On this morning, you would have seen the toxic, deliberate, criss-crossing trails left by airplanes. You would have seen those trails’ expansion into the haze that refracts the sunlight into the glare that denies us the deep blue that Gaia used to provide as an inspiration to humanity. 

Note this picture that I took during the hike. There’s not a cloud in the obscured sky. It’s all haze and trails laid down by deliberately spraying aircraft:

​Compare that photo to this painting reproduced in a placard along the trail. The painting was made in 1845 along the banks of the Congaree just outside of Columbia:
Note the clouds. They are huge cumulus, round with sharp edges. No streaks. No striations. I have not seen such clouds since my youth (and there were airplanes flying even then!). I have not seen a brilliant blue sky since 2013. 

If you consider this, and if you genuinely watch the skies every day, you will see that something is horribly wrong. And for those who anticipate a “white Christmas” to be delivered by “Winter Storm Dylan,” I recommend this video.

We didn’t quite make 3 miles on this hike because the trail was closed for maintenance at about 1.3 miles out. Close enough. We achieved our ends because  hiking is restorative, like a good sleep. I think the hike we made today is a good start to a long Christmas weekend (in huge spite of the chem-trailing). To hike a trail and return with the renewal of spirit that you know is a reprieve from the long drudgery of your day-to-day since the last hike, is a picture of Christmas renewal. 

Christians celebrate renewal at Christmastime—a renewed covenant from God that is their salvation. Even more historically, people see the end of the year’s solstice as marking a turn, even in the dead of cold winter, that will lead to new births, new flowerings, new warmth, in the spring. It’s all life’s promise that, though we go through cycles, we go on. 

I’ll hold onto that promise and enjoy the holidays nestled in the love of my family. I hope that you will do the same.

Happy Christmas.

<![CDATA[Ruins]]>Sat, 04 Nov 2017 20:25:09 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/ruinsPicture
Ruins are windows into the past, and maybe into the future.

There is a certain romantic beauty in ruins. Archaeological ruins, I mean, like Mayan temples and Egyptian cities half buried in the desert. They are windows into worlds passed away and evidence of life’s steady progression. They inspire art such as Shelley’s poem, Ozymandias, and a genre of thriller movies (Raiders of the Lost Ark). Donna and I caught a glimpse of such beauty when we hiked through the ruins of a 140 year old textile mill on the banks of the Saluda River near our home.

Such excursions soothe the soul while they challenge our fitness. We work out hard so we can make such hikes and maybe find some enlightenment from a change of perspective we can take back to the day-to-day. They nourish, even when undertaken in the dark energies of current events. That’s what I meant by “spiritual sustenance” in my last journal entry.

The beauty of ruins as wonderments of what came before, can be projected into the future. In fiction, we can imagine what the ruins of our world will mean to our descendants, especially if their world is collapsed to a “pre-tech” level. Such stories have become a genre in Science Fiction usually referred to as post-apocalypse. It is the genre of my novel-in-progress, Power of the Ancients. There’s a dark side to such imaginings, however, because there is the strong possibility that no human will survive to wonder about our ruins. Or if there are, they may curse us for having destroyed the cradle of humanity to a point that leaves them with only the barest supports for survival.

I’ve written often in this journal about the awful burden put upon the natural by the technosphere, and the ruling class’ apparent deliberateness in destroying it. This week, a study was published by a group of European scientists of the results of a decades long study of the level of insect life in various nature preserves in Germany. They found that:

…populations of flying insects like bees and butterflies plunged more than 75 percent in German nature preserves over the past 27 years…

That’s huge and beyond alarming because, as the study’s project leader said:

As entire ecosystems are dependent on insects for food and as pollinators, it places the decline of insect eating birds and mammals in a new context.

And further:

The decline in insect biomass, being evident throughout the growing season, and irrespective of habitat type or landscape configuration, suggests large-scale factors must be involved.

The factors they suggest are mostly the widespread use of insecticides, though I would suggest that more insidious causes are also involved, such as manipulating species via genetic modification, and geoengineering.

Is all we can do in the face of destruction wrought by greed and psychopathy is to stand and watch? Perhaps you will be motivated to activism or to seek out those remaining beauties before they are all gone.

Whether you follow these or some other path, let me point you to another little book that I recently reviewed. It is Beyond Alt-Right and Alt-Left: A Community of Americans by John Hogue, prophecy scholar and political commentator. In this work, Mr. Hogue points out the polarizations he sees in current events as well as in the scads of emails he receives from his readers. He argues for a middle ground of tolerance to hopefully forestall an eruption of widespread violence in the US in a couple of years (revolution or civil war), unless (US) Americans can agree to live with their differences. I think there is a general will among people to do just that, but our rulers will work against it for the sake of maintaining power.

Personally, I will continue to seek out and appreciate the beauty of ruins, even as I realize that our civilization is fast becoming one.

<![CDATA[Your Store of Spiritual Sustenance]]>Sat, 14 Oct 2017 20:16:43 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/your-store-of-spiritual-sustenancePicture
Book reviews and a video to aid your search for meaning…

How does a person cope when they find themselves living in oppressive, desperate times? How can you live to your fullest and experience the rich potential that exists as part of living on earth, when dark forces seem to be facilitating your demise? These questions express the existential dilemma that keeps popping up when I try to write about writing, storytelling, hiking, fitness, and the better aspects of life I find inspiring. I feel that when I’m writing about something positive, like a hike in a national forest, I’m being delusional or ignoring the hard reality such an event (like the hike) takes place within. It’s like exerting myself on a 5 mile trek down a forest trail while the sky is being overlaid with a chem-trail haze. How do I reconcile the two?

The best commentary I’ve found for dealing with this dilemma is Viktor Frankl’s classic book, Man’s Search for Meaning. Dr. Frankl dealt with these very existential questions while living under the most extreme of conditions: the Nazi concentration camps. There, life for him was reduced to its most elemental level. All meaning, choice, and love were taken from him. Yet in his misery, his clinical mind observed what was happening to him and remained determined to learn its lessons. Those lessons congealed only years after his liberation and they are what I keep returning to.

In a nutshell, Dr. Frankl found that hope and meaning in a person’s life is best found by following three strategies:

(1) by creating a work or doing a deed; 
(2) by experiencing something or encountering someone; and 
(3) by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering.

That work or deed might be the engaging in activism to oppose evil. Experiences and encounters  might be deliberate (like hiking the Appalachian Trail) or being open to inspirations offered by “chance” encounters. And when oppression reaches its most extreme, the only choice that can’t be taken from us is how we respond to it (i.e., “suffering well”).

BTW: this is not “spoiling” Dr. Frankl’s book. His anecdotes and commentary expand on these strategies with much enlightenment to anyone open to it. I highly recommend his book (see the links at the end of this post).

So, bearing Dr. Frankl’s advice in mind, let me push ahead with my own work—which I mean to be a helpful sharing with others.

I’ve posted a couple of book reviews that reflect this idea of seeking inspiration and information in the face of harsh reality. The first is a review of a science fiction book, Fata Morgana by Steven R. Boyett and Ken Mitchroney. While I didn’t rate the book highly, I did much enjoy its depiction of the operation of a B-17 Flying Fortress. The authors’ inspired research in this area shows, and that they meshed it with a SF time travel format grabbed my attention. While the story wasn’t handled as well as it could have been, there’s still much entertainment value in it.

The other book review is Nostradamus: Premonitions of 9/11 by John Hogue. This book’s subject is precisely what its title implies: a consideration of the predictions that Nostradamus actually wrote concerning the 9/11 event, and premonitions that surfaced in the years prior to that great watershed tragedy. Because Mr. Hogue concentrates on his own premonitions, the book is more autobiographical than his other works. It also contains his political commentary (since he is a “political prophet”) that I recommend for those trying to “get a clue,” though in this case, I don’t agree with all of his interpretations.

So I’ve offered in this post, considerations of written works of philosophical inspiration, entertainment inspiration, and paranormal-political commentary. Let me also offer one of stark reality. This is a video made by Geoengineeringwatch.org. It relates the horrendous wildfires constantly raging in the western US (especially California) to the geoengineering program (the source of chem-trails) going on over our heads. I offer this to you as another clue. It is one you can follow into a pitch dark hole, but it’s reality, and you need a store of spiritual sustenance to keep your optimism and your inspiration. See Dr. Frankl’s book.

* * *

Ray-view of Fata Morgana.

Ray-view of Nostradamus: Premonitions of 9/11.

Ray-view of Man’s Search for Meaning.

Geoengineering Watch video about wildfires.

<![CDATA[The Onslaught of Storms]]>Sun, 01 Oct 2017 14:16:28 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/the-onslaught-of-stormsPicture
Finding respite in a natural shelter.

This last batch of Atlantic hurricanes never reached us and, at this moment, the Atlantic basin is quiet with regard to developing cyclones (other than a couple of disturbances that are already on land and not developing). Since I live fairly near the coast now and work for an organization that helps during emergencies, I’ve anxiously followed this hurricane season (though it’s pretty much year-round now because the oceans are so much hotter). Disaster conditions in the Carolinas tend to ramp up my job duties.

So with a lull in the bad weather, and feeling fit from a routine of work-outs, my wife and I decided to take a hike. Taking advantage of the high pressure installed over us (intended to bounce approaching hurricanes out to sea, which it did for H. Jose and Maria), we hit the trail at Peachtree Rock.

We had hiked Peachtree before, but in late January when the trees were bare. At that time, the denuded trees created an openness on the trail such that it felt more like a park than an expanse of forest. This time, however, the trees were leafed out and it did feel like a forest, making for a better hike. 

Though there was chem-trailing going on, which always mars the outdoors for me, my pent-up need for recreational exertion was such that the time was invigorating. It helped like a tonic, as exercise often does. We explored a bit more on this trip, investigating the interesting geology of the place. It’s an area of hard-rock outcroppings over layers of porous, sandstone sediments that erode, more at their base than the top, to create mesa-like structures. Eventually, their bases erode to the point they become top-heavy and they collapse. The result of such collapses is seen in the tumble of boulders along the northern edge of the preserve.

We climbed among the boulders, until we reached a carved-out spot on high ground. It formed a pretty good shelter and looked out over the expanse of woods containing the hiking trail. The picture accompanying this post was taken from that natural shelter.

The results of rock formations that erosion makes too top-heavy are seen all around the nature preserve that contains the trail. Civilizations are like that. So are economies. Our current ones are not sustainable and the activities of our rulers are mostly directed at keeping their party going. They are doomed to fail and the picture of their final collapse may be seen in the current conditions on Puerto Rico. That island (a US colony where everyone is a US citizen) was completely devastated by Hurricanes Irma and Maria. They are completely dependent on the outside to maintain their “modern lifestyle.” The fragility of that lifestyle is revealed in its destruction. The US government is reluctant to help them, preferring to increase Wall Street’s grip on the island with greater debt (to “rebuild”). 

Richard Heinberg summed up Puerto Rico’s situation and how it presages that of the wider world in an article published on the Global Research website. He also provides a list of sensible steps that could be done to rebuild Puerto Rico to a sustainable economy and society. These same steps could be applied to world civilization and give humanity a chance to survive. It won’t happen, though, as long as the world is ruled by psychopaths via their neoliberal (i.e., fascist) ideology. Disasters such as has occurred in Puerto Rico, will only receive indifference and predatory exploitation from our rulers.

Sitting in a natural shelter overlooking a forest was restorative for me; the kind of thing I return to from time-to-time. It helps maintain personal sanity. Around me though, were beer cans intentionally left in niches among the rocks, providing evidence of those incapable of being touched by beauty. The trick is to live in spite of them, and nestle in what shelters we can find in midst of the onslaught of storms.

<![CDATA[Hurricanes]]>Sat, 23 Sep 2017 22:19:42 GMThttp://rayfoy.com/rays-journal/hurricanesPicture
Wild, manipulated weather is discouraging; what would Ulysses do?

Hurricane Irma missed us. Its path led it far to the west, barely brushing Columbia, South Carolina with tropical storm winds. I am thankful for that avoidance of a disaster, though I am very sorry for those souls that took the brunt of it—in the Virgin and Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Florida, and Georgia. And may God help those in Texas who were wasted by Hurricane Harvey a scant two weeks before. I feel their pain, their outrage, at having suffered calamity from an Act of God. I suspect, however, that God had little to do with the work of those storms.

Hurricane Jose followed Irma, but it stayed out to sea until it was locked in place at a point south of New York City. It weakened to a tropical storm, making tight circles offshore while it dumped waves of rain on the US northeast. As of this writing, Jose has dissipated entirely. It looks like the void may be filled, however, with Hurricane Maria, which is headed over basically the same path. Maria is a major storm and has already completed the devastation Irma started in the Caribbean.

Though Maria’s path is determined to take out to sea at this point, I’ve spent the last week in apprehension over the possibility of its striking SC. For a while, the potential seemed strong. Even now, a right-turn into the state is not outside the capabilities of the geoengineers. It has happened before.

Also at this time, Hurricane Lee has reformed in the mid-Atlantic as a tropical storm. It is scheduled to build back to a hurricane and follow the looping path that is apparently all the rage among hurricanes these days. Apparently, it will be “parked,” to await its use for whatever the geoengineers have in mind.

If you have doubts about my insinuations regarding the control of hurricanes, you might check out this video

My greatest desire in writing is for my words to inspire and entertain. I’ve wanted to use the literary art to express my view of things and experiences of life to the benefit of others. I have myself been thus inspired by written drama and memoir. At this time in my life, there is much I could say—much I have said—and, like Tennyson’s Ulysses, I find that “Tho' much is taken, much abides.” 

What abides for me, I’ll share. A novel, book reviews. news, my strivings and seekings with fitness and with hurricanes. All in the face of perilous times, as I try “not to yield.”