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The Energy of Life
The Ringing Cedars Series, Book 7

Vladimir Megré

Translated by John Woodsworth
Published by Ringing Cedars Press/US
A Book Review by Bobby Matherne ©2007


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After reading and reviewing the first six books in the Ringing Cedars Series, I hit a major speed bump on this one. From Chapter 14 through Chapter 21 (pages 80 through 177), the book seemed mean-spirited, vindictive, and filled with rants instead of information. Soon I found myself fighting simply to trudge through the material and finally gave up hope of it improving. I placed the book aside for three months. When I picked it back up, I was rewarded by three marvelous ending chapters 25, 26, and 27 which create a vision of how the world could become. In this review I will focus on Chapters 1 through 13 and 22 through 28 (last chapter). Readers may want to read the interstitial chapters, and if so, I wish them luck.

The prevailing scientific opinion is that the brain simply records what comes in from the senses and manipulates it, and Man is relegated to being a machine, albeit an ingenious one. Machines, even ingenious ones like the large computers, may be able to win chess games by memorizing and calculating every possible chess move in a given situation, but they are not creative. The hallmark of the full human being is the ability to think and to create. And each one of us possesses that ability, and we each have the freedom to choose how to apply that ability.

Remarkably, that creative ability of human thought is at work whether we choose to use it consciously or not. If we do not choose to use it, it works in the background and creates out of our awareness a world which comes to exactly resemble the sum total of the thoughts which flit unthinkingly through our minds. Every time we suppose that such and such is likely to happen, sooner or later, it happens to us. The unthinking will respond like the hypochondriac who had placed on her tombstone the words, "SEE, I TOLD YOU I WAS SICK!" The problems that persons worry about, the situations they suppose will happen in a certain way, the things they fear will happen, will all eventually happen in some way to them. That should be a warning to all of us to avoid such thoughts, but alas, we live in a world which fills us with phobias day and night, if we sit still and take them in(a) . But we each have a will and we can apply our own thoughts to reducing those incoming phobias to a minimum.

If you really understood that everything always turns out the way you suppose it will turn out, wouldn't you want to have some control over the things you suppose will happen? And what would it take to do that? Simply the energy of thought.

[page 1] Man's life! On what or on whom does it depend? Why do some become emperors or regimental commanders, while others are obliged to fend for scraps at garbage dumps?
      One opinion holds that each person's fate is pre-determined from birth. That would make Man(1) nothing more than an insignificant cog in some mechanized system, and not the highly organized creation of God.
      According to a different opinion, Man is a self-sufficient creation, including, without exception, all the diverse energies of the vast Universe.
      But there is in Man an energy peculiar to him alone. It is known as the energy of thought. Once Man realizes just what kind of energy is in his possession and learns to exploit it to the full, then he will be a ruler of the whole Universe.

Not only can one's thoughts lead one to ending up in a garbage dumpster scrounging for food and things, but it can cause one to remain there, in spite of anyone's help. The author gives an example of such thinking by going unshaven and spending several days searching through garbage, and soon one of the people he was searching for found him and threatened him with a iron rod to get away from his dumpster.

[page 15] "Keep your paws off what doesn't belong to you," he said in a tone that brooked no contradiction.
      "You're saying that this is your territory?" I asked calmly, taking a few steps back from the dumpster, at the same time handing him my plastic bag with the bottles.
      "Whose else would it be?" the man replied, already sounding less aggressive than before. He took my bag and began raking through the contents of the garbage dump, paying no attention to me.

The man's name was Pavel, and after Vladimir plied him with some vodka, they became friends. Obviously Pavel's entire life centered on dumpsters, the best days to search them, what bottles or metals brought the best return as scrap, etc, so Vladimir tried to help Pavel find a paying job.

[page 16] "You know, Pavel, there's a chap building a house not too far away who's looking for a security guard over the winter, as well as to help in the construction, for which he's willing to pay extra. And supply groceries to boot. Every week his driver brings potatoes, onions and cereal. You're a decent fellow — he'll hire you. If you like, we can go have a word with him."
      After a few drinks, as might be expected, we had become friends. Which made the sudden sharp shift in his mood all the more unexpected. First he spent about thirty seconds in intensive thought. Then after staring at me another thirty seconds in a kind of standoffish silence, he finally came out with what was on his mind:
      "You think I've been drinkin' and not realized what's going on? What's all this business, Creep, about me being hired as a guard, just so's you can take over my dumpsters?"

This illustrates very well the plight of the homeless, who become monomaniacal about maintaining their life style and acting paranoid toward everyone who would try to help them better themselves. When some Man gets into such a tight loop about his suppositions about life, it takes a strong bootstrap effort to raise his sights to other possibilities. This is garbage dump thinking. It operates exactly like every other kind of thinking habits one might get into — the world only makes sense when one views it through one's own colored glasses.

Perhaps you are thinking, "None of that could help me." Yes, you may be right. But read this short parable that was told to Vladimir by Anastasia's grandfather, and see if it makes sense to you.

[page 19 - 23] Once upon a time there lived an ordinary husband and wife. The wife's name was Elena, her husband was Ivan.
      Every day the husband would come home from work, sit down in his favorite chair by the television set and begin reading the newspaper. His wife Elena would get supper ready. As she gave Ivan his supper she would nag him that he never did anything useful around the place, and was not earning enough money. Ivan got irritated by his wife's nagging. But instead of giving her some kind of gruff response, he simply thought to himself: She herself's a dirty slut, and she's telling me what to do. But when we got married, she was so totally different — she was beautiful, and she was tender.
      One day when this nagging wife demanded Ivan take out the garbage, he reluctantly tore himself away from the TV and headed outdoors with the dustbin. Upon returning, he stopped in the doorway and turned to God in his thought:
      "O, Lord! O, Lord! Just look at how lousy my life's turned out! Do I really have to while away all my remaining years with such a nagging and ugly wife? This isn't life — it's sheer torture!"
      And then all of a sudden Ivan heard the quiet voice of God:
      "My son, I could help alleviate your troubles, I could give you a splendid goddess of a wife, only if your neighbors noticed a sudden change in your life, they might become greatly astonished. Let us work this way: I shall change your wife just a little at a time. I shall imbue her with the spirit of a goddess and improve her outward appearance. Only you must remember that if you want to live with a goddess, you have to make your own life worthy of a goddess."
      "Thank you, O Lord! Any man would be happy to change his life for the sake of a goddess. But tell me: when will You start making changes in my wife?"
      "I shall begin a few little changes right away. And minute by minute I shall be changing her for the better."
      Ivan went back into his home, sat down in his chair, picked up the paper and turned the television back on. Only he did not feel like reading, or watching any TV films. He could not wait to peek and see whether his wife had started changing even just a little.
      He got up and opened the kitchen door. Leaning against the door-post, he began watching his wife intently. She was standing with her back to him, washing the supper dishes.
      All at once Elena felt herself being watched and turned toward the doorway. Their eyes met. Ivan looked at his wife and thought: No, I don't see any changes going on in my wife.
      Seeing the unusual attention her husband was paying her and not being able to figure it out, Elena all at once straightened her hair, and a rosy blush came over her cheeks as she asked:
      "What is it, Ivan? Why are you looking at me so intently?"
      The husband could not think of what to say. Embarrassed, he blurted out:
      "Well, maybe... the dishes... maybe I could help you wash them? I was just thinking about it, for some reason."
      "The dishes? You help me?" the wife echoed in surprise, taking off her much-soiled apron. "Well, you see, I've already done them."
      Wow! She's changing right before my eyes! Ivan thought. Look how much prettier she's become all of a sudden!
      And then he started drying the dishes.
      The next day after work Ivan couldn't wait to get home. He couldn't wait to see how his nagging wife was little by little being transformed into a goddess.
      Hasn't she got a lot of goddess in her already? But I haven't changed even a little bit myself, as usual. In any case, I should buy her some flowers, so I won't fall flat on my face before a goddess!
      Upon opening the door to his home, Ivan stood entranced in amazement. There before him stood Elena in her party dress, the same one he had bought her last year. She was sporting a neat hairdo, complete with a bright ribbon. He was dumbfounded. With some awkwardness he offered the flowers to Elena, not being able to take his eyes off her.
      She accepted the flowers and gave a little gasp. She lowered her eyelids and a rosy blush filled her cheeks.
      Oh, what marvelous eyelids goddesses have! What meekness they express! What extraordinary inner beauty, and outward looks!
      And Ivan gasped in turn, upon seeing the table set with their fancy china and two candles burning on the table, along with two wine-glasses and the food with its divinely tempting aromas.
      He sat down to the table, and Elena his wife sat down opposite him. But then suddenly she jumped up and said:
      "I'm so sorry, I forgot to turn the TV on for you. But here, I've got today's paper for you."
      "Never mind the TV, and I don't really feel like reading the paper either — they all keep saying the same thing," Ivan responded with sincerity. "I'd rather you tell me what you'd like to do tomorrow, Saturday."
      Completely overwhelmed, Elena asked in amazement: "What would you like to do?"
      "Well, I happened to pick us up a couple of theater tickets today. Anyway, tomorrow afternoon, I thought you might like to do a bit of shopping. Since we're going to the theater, I thought we'd drop into a store first and buy you a dress suitable for the occasion."
      Ivan just caught himself in time from blurting out his cherished secret: a dress suitable for a goddess. Embarrassed, he looked at her again and gave another gasp. A goddess was indeed sitting at the table before him. Her face was beaming with joy, and her eyes were sparkling. Her restrained smile was just slightly inquisitive.
      O Lord, how marvelous goddesses are after all! But if she keeps on getting better day by day, can I become worthy of this goddess? Ivan mused. All of a sudden, a thought struck him like lightning: I've got to do it! I've got to do it while this goddess is here with me. I've got to ask her, plead with her to bear my child A child which will come from me and from this most marvelous goddess!
      "A penny for your thoughts, Ivan! Could that be excitement I see in your face?" Elena asked her husband.
      He sat there excitedly, not sure how to talk about so precious a thing. This was no piece of cake — asking a goddess to bear a child! This was not a gift God had promised him.
      He did not know how to tell her about his wish. Fumbling with a corner of the tablecloth, Ivan got up from the table and pleaded, blushing:
      "I don't know... Do you think... But I... wanted to say... for a long time now... I want to have a child with you, my beautiful goddess!"
      Whereupon she, Elena, came over to Ivan, her husband. From her love-filled eyes a tear of joy rolled down her rosy cheek. She placed her hand on Ivan's shoulder, and her breath flared in a warm flush.
      What a night that was! What a morning! And oh, what a day it is! How marvelous it is to live with a goddess! thought Ivan, as he bundled up his second grandson for an outdoor stroll.

This is a story one might have heard from a client of Milton Erickson, who for over fifty years gave advice as unusual as that given to Ivan by God. Milton wouldn't have promised to turn Ivan's wife into a goddess, but he would have raised the possibility and the man would have begun looking for those changes exactly as Ivan did, and by looking for those changes, he would have begun the bootstrap process of returning his wife to the goddess state she had when he first met her.

Vladimir said he could see how Ivan changed his own life, but Grandfather explained that God did have something to do with it. "When?" asked Vladimir.

[page 24] "Back when God gave everything to each of us, when He was contemplating the creation of Man. And explaining everything to the first Man he created. Do you remember God's words from the book Co-Creation? He said:
      "My son, you are infinite, you are eternal, within you are your dreams of creation."

God used His dreams of creation to create Man and imbued Man with that process of creation. In this parable He set in motion Ivan's dreams to change his wife into a goddess. In other words, the process used by Ivan to change his downtrodden wife into a goddess was to presuppose the very attributes already existing in her that he wished her to have. And being a Man herself, a full human being, she began to acquire and exhibit those characteristics immediately. Together they co-created a new reality for themselves. Like God, like Ivan, we can only help others do what we already know how to do.

In this next passage, Anastasia was greeted by a rainbowed series of arches leading to her pond in the taiga. (See Cover Art for artist's rendition of this event.) She had been meditating on the grass and when she got up, she was completely depleted. Her Grandfather noticed that the grass had been bleached white under where she had lain. On this one day, she was getting up from such a meditation and heading for her lake to be refreshed when she was interrupted by the energy sphere which had visited her often before. (Depicted on the cover of Book 1, Anastasia.) She asked the sphere not to touch her, but allow her to refresh herself in the lake.

[page 38] In an instant the sphere gathered up all its quivering tongues of light from all around, and kept pulsating like a heart. It swept upward with a flash - it seemingly cracked asunder and then contracted. Its myriad tongues made a dash for the ground, touching everything on the path leading to the lake from Anastasia's feet.
      And another vision arose. The path began to sparkle with millions of pulsating colors of light, making a multicolored rainbow arc over the path leading to the lake from Anastasia's feet. It was a wondrous sight indeed! Anastasia's pathway now lay through a triumphal arch!
      She took a step, but to one side. She did not follow the route marked out for her by the fiery sphere. She slowly attained the shore and dived in, then resurfaced and simply lay in the water with outstretched arms. Then she started splashing about — her strength had returned.
      Anastasia's behavior in relation to the fiery sphere, which was really in relation to God, was beyond our comprehension.

And it was beyond mine. Why did the rainbow pathway form for her? Why did she refuse to take it? It's a mystery. But then the energy sphere which had reformed high above slammed to the ground about ten feet in front of her, splattered into sparks which then re-assembled themselves into the form of a young boy of about seven years old. The figure carefully intoned, "Thank you, sons and daughters, for your aspirations." Then it disappeared. (Page 39, 40) Who was the figure? My guess is that it was the same figure who appeared to Joan of Arc, the Archangel Mi-cha-el. He seems to appear at turning points in history. If He had not appeared to Joan, the entire continent of Europe might have lost its diversity by being conquered by England. Single-handedly, with Mi-cha-el’s help, Joan defeated the British forces and kept her beloved France as an independent country, as it exists to this day. Mi-cha-el, St. Michael, or his figurehead, St. George, are universally pictured as fighting the dark forces of the Universe. St. George fights the dragon. St. Michael has his foot on a writhing snake or dragon and is ready to dispatch it. And now he appeared to another powerful and influential young maiden, Anastasia, and thanked her and the rest of us reading her books for our aspirations. Anastasia's great-grandfather, who witnessed this Mi-cha-elic event, wept. He said quietly and confidently:

[page 40] "She did it! Anastasia has brought people across the dark forces' window of time. The seeds of happy and joyful aspirations will now be scattered over the whole Earth!"

Then he added a reference to a thought of Anastasia:

[page 40] The thought produced by Anastasia had not been heard since the time of creation, nor reflected in a single religious or scientific treatise. Utterly simply and yet, at the same time, extraordinarily exalted, it has turned the treatises we know into naïve musings which had nothing in common with the Divine essence. Anastasia had imbued human consciousness with the concept of God which Man had been missing all these years.

Naturally, Vladimir, hearing these words asks, "What does it consist of?"

Before we go any further, let me say that the biblical words that "Man is made in the image and likeness of God" are most often interpreted as saying that we look like God. This has always seemed to me an unlikely meaning to hold. My interpretation at this time is that the phrase "image of God" refers to the image that existed in the mind of God for His new creation, Man, and that the "likeness of God" refers to Man’s having the creative processes like those that God possesses. Image refers to God's design plan for us, and likeness(2) to our creative processes which match the creative processes of God. If we hold the meaning that God's creativity is without limit, then Man's creativity is without limit.

By this analysis we can see that God has made us as creative as He is. Given that, would He not be upset if someone were to plead to Him, "We love You, only give us more of Your goodness. We are Your servants, we are powerless and ignorant, we are stupid. Help us, O Lord!" Would you not imagine that God would displeased to hear one of his creative children, a Man, made alike in power with Him, pleading in such a puerile fashion? On page 43, the narrator comments, "This is how doubts about the perfection of God's creations arose among the elemental beings of the Universe." No doubt that is true.

Vladimir asks, "But who could make such a fool of Man in this way? How? When?" The answer can only be, "Someone alike in power to Man." This must be so as shown by the analysis above that Man is alike in power to God. Therefore it must be Man himself! The answer goes to the heart of why God does not interfere in the affairs of Man.

[page 44] The priests were the ones who launched mankind down the path of degradation. They took it upon themselves to prove to God that they were capable of controlling all mankind, on the premise that humanity's moanings and torments would force God to enter into a dialogue with them.
      They counted on this because they know that God never talks with anyone, never interferes in human destiny, that all destinies are determined by the paths human beings themselves have chosen.
      But if mankind were to be brought to the brink of total destruction, God might enter into negotiations with those leading mankind to that brink — with those influencing people's minds — in order to head off an utter collapse. The premise was that God would do this for the sake of all humanity.
      Millennia went by. But God did not enter into a dialogue with the priests and did not bring about any new miracles to bring people to their senses. First my father, and later I myself, understood why.
      If He had done this, if God had interfered in human affairs, then He Himself would have confirmed the speculations on the part of the elemental beings of the Universe that Man was an imperfect creation.
      But, more importantly, His interference would have ultimately destroyed Man's faith in himself Man would have ultimately ceased discovering the Divine elements within himself and relied solely on help from outside.

The words of anyone who might have expressed such a concept would have been expunged from the writings of the Church's libraries, which were the only extant libraries surviving after the burning of the volumes of Alexandria in ancient Egypt in the time of Julius Caesar. There seems little doubt to me that ideas such as the above would have been held by the Gnostics, but we have but little evidence since the majority of their writings were banished, obliterated, or rewritten to obfuscate their meaning by the priests of the early Church. And now, through the efforts of Anastasia's accelerated thinking, all this is beginning to change very quickly.

What is changing? Anastasia is teaching us to pay attention to the accelerated rate of thinking in our children(3). She says that "even a small child should not be distracted from what he is doing — in other words, the operation of his thought should not be stopped." (Page 49)

[page 49] Then she showed you a series of exercises aimed at accelerating a child's thought. She told about how education as we see it begins with the correct presentation of questions to the child.
      When a child is presented with a question, his thought begins to search for the answer and thereby gains more and more momentum. This means that the speed of his thinking is increasing minute by minute, and by the time he is eleven it will be many, many times faster than that of someone raised under a system designed to slow thought down.

Back in the 1970s I recall vividly when Richard Bandler, a founder of NLP, suggested that instead of giving Ritalin to hyperactive children to get them to slow down, they should give Ritalin (which speed up adult processes) to the teachers so they might be able to keep up with the accelerated pace of their students. If a teacher cannot keep up with their children, Anastasia recommends that at the very least they do not attempt to slow down their children.

The worst thing a parent can give a baby or a growing child is an artificial object designed by an adult! To give them such an object is as bad as forcing the child to take instruction on how to think from a slow adult. No matter how good an adult is, they do not think as fast or clear as children do, if they are not hobbled by constraints placed upon them by well-meaning, but oblivious parents and caregivers, up until now. Rudolf Steiner understood the pedagogical problem of raising small children, and specifically warned against the "beautiful doll" syndrome. He urged parents instead to give a child a sock which they could create into a doll made from their own thoughts, creativity, and desires. The child will cherish that sock doll and gain more from it than from any manufactured "beautiful doll" or "G. I. Joe" action figure.

Vladimir is encouraged to compare the difference between his daughter from his first wife and his son from Anastasia.

[page 49] Think about the difference, Vladimir. Your daughter, when she was little, kept shaking her rattle, and later got interested in dolls. Your son, on the other hand — the one Anastasia bore you — also like to play, as all children do. But what he played with was a squirrel, a wolf, a bear, a snake and a lot of other creatures made by the Creator.
      Now compare the two, only be sure to picture to yourself the degree of discrepancy in the speed of thinking between the one who created the child's rattle or doll and the One who created the squirrel.

The way children are raised at home can slow down their thinking, but nothing compared to what happens when they arrive in the public or private school systems(4).

[page 50] When children go to school, a teacher stands before them and explains the essence of things, along with the rules of conduct and the order of the Universe. The teacher not only explains — he demands that the children think the same way as somebody else has thought. And once again this serves to slow down the development of the children's thinking speed. Or, to put it more precisely, children are prohibited from thinking independently.

Not only are they prohibited from thinking independently, but those that do are penalized by the grading system designed for children with non-accelerated thinking! Think freely and get bad grades or think like everyone else and get good grades. Is that a choice you would wish for your children? Only a parent who wants for their children the boon they perceive their own life to be would wish such a fate on their offspring. I am most thankful that my parents never once laid such expectations upon me as a child or as an adult. I was the first in my family to go to college, and was part of the first generation of the Matherne and Babin families to go to college. I went to college because I wanted to go to college, and I received no financial support nor encouragement from my parents. What I did receive from them was no discouragement and a model for going after what I wanted and making it happen. I received their likeness.

People should eat the way they breathe, in fact, they should eat what they breathe. What? What nutrition could the air contain other than the energy of oxygen? Well, the pollen from plants for one thing. Pollen? Why, I hate pollen! It makes me sneeze! It irritates my air passages! It gives me asthma! You can imagine the litany of horrors people would create at the idea of getting nutrition from something that they consider to be bane of their existence. One need only watch the briefest television show one night to encounter commercials for medications designed to overcome the effects of pollen. Every weather report casts pollen as the bad guy by displaying the pollen count. If one is breathing pollen in as food, then the higher the pollen count, the more people would like it, but unfortunately, that is not the case, up until now. Pollen is a life-giving substance given to us by God, and by God, we do ill to shun it by staying indoors or taking life-altering medications to overcome it on high pollen count days. The mere fact of treating pollen as a bad thing causes us to become allergic to its presence.

Here is an excerpt from Book 4, Chapter 4, Co-Creation about pollen. Anastasia is answering Vladimir's question, "Pollen? What kind of pollen?" Once again Vladimir took the role of Everyman in asking this question about pollen as someone allergic to pollen might.

[page 72] "Pollen from flowers and grasses, from trees and fruit, which diffused fragrances into the air. Some came from those close by, while breezes brought others from distant places. Back then Man was not distracted from his great works by any problems of finding food. He was fed by everything around him through the air. This was the way it was all designed by the Creator right from the very beginning, so that all life on Earth should strive to please Man, and the air and the water and the breeze would be life-giving, under the impulse of love.

By living in enclosed spaces today, we are not able to breathe the pollen-laden air. Obviously many people are glad about this situation, but only because they do not understand pollen as a life-giving nutrition. By arranging to live in crowded cities and apartment buildings, we end up "breathing instead the dust of our own schemes". (Page 73)

Instead of breathing dust, Anastasia's scheme of a hectare of land for each family will bring much needed life-bearing nutrition in the form of pollen-filled air. Her Grandfather asks Vladimir to picture a morning-time for a Man who lives in a family domain. As you read this compare it to how you spend your morning every day.

[page 74, 75] A Man awakens at dawn and goes out of his house into the garden of his family domain, in which are growing more than three hundred varieties of plants he needs.
      He has taken up the habit of walking around his property every morning.
      As he walks along the path his eyes are delighted by the lively variety of herbs, trees and flowers. These cannot help but delight and furnish him with positive emotions.
      Nothing can give him a greater emotional charge or abundant energy than one's own family life-giving Space.
      Many ages passed. In each of them attempts were made to attract mankind to all sorts of different values.
      Man became enthralled with a huge house, the latest clothing, a new car or some other gadget. Man became enthralled with money and his position in society. But all such joys are conditional and fleeting. They only bring a temporary sense of happiness and pleasure, and within a short space of time they become commonplace, bothersome and sometimes downright annoying.
      An old and decaying house will begin to demand constant repair. A car, too, can start having frequent breakdowns. Clothes wear out.
      Man has always intuitively felt the true beauty and perfection of the eternal, and that is why even a king surrounded by luxury and personal palaces has always needed a garden. This is a truth that has remained unshakeable for millions of years of Man's life on the Earth.
      True delight and peace is attainable only in one's own family domain.

We live on smaller than a hectare of land(5) but we have planted our own plants, flowers, fruits, herbs and vegetables. This morning I took my walk around our domain and found the grapefruit, orange, and lemon trees blooming and the fragrance was marvelous. I breathed it all in and it was deeply satisfying. I walked around the vegetable garden where the parsley is beginning to sprout as are the green bean plants. The Creole tomato plants are growing, alongside the bell pepper, okra and eggplant plants. The radishes were over an inch tall already and I bent over, my feet straddling the rows to thin out the radish plants and pull out any voluntary but unwanted plants among the radishes and other plants. It was truly a peaceful experience. And no doubt I was breathing in pollen-filled air as I did so.

[page 75] When the Man takes his morning walk through his family domain, he breathes its air, and with each breath takes in thousands of invisible particles — plant pollen. The air is saturated with them. Quite alive, they enter the Man, dissolving within him without a trace, nourishing his body with everything he needs. And the air of one's family domain nourishes not only the human body, but feeds the spirit with ethers and accelerates thought.

There are books that can explain how a certain machine operates, but there can be no book which explains how an individual, how a Man, chooses to eat what he eats as he walks through his kin's domain. Why he chose those three berries to eat, those flowers to lean over to inhale their fragrance, why he picked that particular grapefruit or orange to eat. Why a particular wild strawberry looked especially inviting and led him to eat it. These are individual decisions and those decisions when added up over a lifetime creates the individual. What I've learned is that food that is good for me tastes better than food that isn't. Vegetables grown with my own hands as I assisted my father in his garden always tasted better than identical looking vegetables at the local market. Before I studied Anastasia's books, this effect was obvious to me, but I lacked a plausible reason for how that might be so. She claims that the plant can act as our physician by changing itself to match our body's needs when it receives the sweat of our hands, of our brow, or our breathing. When I studied human biochemistry, I found that plants have transposable genes which react with chemicals in the air and soil to modify the set of proteins, etc., that the plant produces. With this bit of materialistic scientific knowledge, I was able to close the loop on the reason my own grown vegetables tasted better to me: because they were better for me!

[page 76] When the Man takes his morning walk through his family domain, he smiles, thinking about something personal, while at the same time enjoying a surfeit of fruits — not thinking about them, but feeling them. This Man has been eating just as he breathes.

With that passage I will jump to Chapter Twenty-Two (page 178) "The Marvelous Vedruss holidays", skipping the hundred pages that caused me to toss the book aside unread for four months, and complete my review of the latter portion of the book.

The first holiday mentioned, Shrovetide, struck a resonant note with me because it is the major annual holiday in the city where I live, New Orleans. That holiday is Mardi Gras(6) or as we sometimes call it, Shrove Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday. It is the last blast of revelry before the somber fasting and abstinence time of Lent begins. The 40 days of Lent do not include Sundays — which you may affirm by counting the days between Mardi Gras and Easter Sunday — so there is always more than 40 days. In New Orleans, we take advantage of that fact and treat Sundays in Lent as non-lenten days. If you gave up andouille gumbo and beer for Lent, for example, you can use the loophole to enjoy these treats, but only on a Sunday, while Lent is running its course. These carnival festivities began as a pagan rite celebrating the coming of Spring, and were metamorphosed into the religious holidays of the Church, just as Christmas was. This area of the United States in southeastern Louisiana surrounding New Orleans seems to me similar to the ancient Vedic times of Russia.

[page 179] During Vedic times, and even later in the pagan period there were no cheerless, mournful rites as there are now. Each holiday gave people a charge of positive energy, and transmitted to young people the knowledge of their forebears.
      And remembrance days in Vedic times were quite different from those of today. There were no processions to the cemetery or lamentations over the graves of the deceased. In fact, during Vedic times there were no cemeteries at all. The deceased were laid to rest in their own family domains without burial vaults or even headstones to mark the occasion. A small raised mound of earth was created, but even this over time became flattened to ground level.

We have quite elaborate cemeteries in New Orleans, mostly because of the low-lying land which required that burial vaults be built to hold bodies above the ground, or in the next flood, coffins would pop from the soaked ground and float around the city. After that happened a few times in the 17th century, natives began placing coffins in above ground crypts, some of them quite fancy. We even have a State holiday called All Saints Day during which people are given time off work to go and visit the graves of their ancestors.

Funerals have two parts in New Orleans. The first line, the procession to the cemetery, is a slow march with a dirge being played by the musicians. The second line, is a lively, up-beat marching, jigging, dancing celebration of life to the sound of a brass band playing improvisational New Orleans jazz tunes continuously. Jazz funerals are held for musicians in New Orleans and with the large number of musicians who call this birthplace of jazz home, hardly a week goes by without a celebratory jazz funeral second line.

On the subject of funerals, I find myself appreciating the Vedic method of burial as I grow older. With the relaxation of the Church's prohibition of cremation, more people are choosing not to create a monument to their death, but rather encourage their family and friends to remember and celebrate their life. When I go to funerals, I do it with the conscious awareness that I am not going to view some detritus of a person's life lying still and cold in a casket made to look like they were asleep; no, I go to funerals to meet and celebrate life with the family and friends of the person whose spirit has passed into the spirit-world in which this physical-world is immersed. I recognize that the spirit that left the corpse in the coffin is present everywhere in the world where someone is thinking of them and so, even though I cannot perceive that spirit, I know it is around.

I have also considered that my books, poems, reviews, and other writings are what I wish to be remembered by. These are the works that I have poured my life force into and those who read what I have written can commune with me for a time and enjoy my presence once again; they can feel what it was like when I was alive, and there is no better memorial to my life that I can imagine existing. You are reading in these very words my own memorial in the process of being written as I type these words. At some future time, when I am engaged directly with thought-spirits and have no need to use fingers to communicate, you will be reading, as it were, my memorial, the thoughts and ideas which flowed through me during my lifetime. I greet you as one alive today, no matter which century you may live in when you read these words.

[page 179] The Vedruss people believed that the best memorial to their forebears was to be found in what they had created during their lifetime. Their knowledge of Nature and of Man's capacities led them to conclude that if all the relatives were to visualize death, their collective thought would prevent the deceased's soul from being reincarnated.

The reality behind this thought seems to lie in how the obsessive mourning by bereaved relatives tends to hold the person's spirit to the Earth and delay its passage into the higher spiritual realms.

What this book illustrates clearly is that religion seems to have evolved as a way of tying people to the priests more than to the spiritual world. The ancient pagan rituals allowed people to experience the spiritual world directly without the need for intercession by some anointed priest.

[page 180] Paganism, and especially Vedism, could scarcely be termed a 'religion'. It would be more accurate to refer to it as the culture of a way of life. It was the greatest culture alive on the Earth, belonging to a highly spiritual civilization. This civilization did not need to believe in God — its people knew God.

Another example of a cultivated spiritual way of life is Shinto, Japan's native religion, which would be called paganism by priests of today as well. And yet, "Shinto itself translates to 'pathway of the gods'." (Page 181)

[page 181] Many Japanese write poetry and have a reverent attitude toward Nature. The whole world is entranced with Japanese ikebana (art of flower arranging). And yet the attraction to this refined art is not restricted to Japan's professional artists. Ikebana is something you can see in practically every Japanese household.

This art of flower arranging I became familiar with through Zen in the Art of Flower Arranging by Gustie L. Herrigel. Years after reading the book, I became a work-at-home writer, and part of my weekly routine was to handle the groceries. I began buying a small bunch of flowers and arranging flowers in vases in six locations in the house, using the minimalist principle of ikebana. One vase in each of the three baths, one in the kitchen, one in the dining area, and one in the entrance area. Here is a photo of a flower arrangement highlighting a yellow Louisiana iris from our garden from a few days ago.

We move forward to Chapter Twenty-Five, "Give children their Motherland." We will cover this chapter in detail because it illustrates the principles applied in the next two chapters where the successes of kin's domain with an orphan is followed by successes with prison inmates and members of parliament (Congress).

The story begins with a young orphan named Sonia who at age eight was not considered adoptable as parents scooped up the younger children first. Sonia was deeded a hectare of land by a group of Kharkov residents who acquired a 150 hectares and deeded them a hectare at a time to families to set up their kin's domains. One hectare on the edge of the community was left and they decided to deed it to an orphan and Sonia was selected. She was taken to see her plot of ground surrounded by stakes and stretched ropes. The housemother told her that the land would be waiting for her when she grew up to build a house and a garden. Sonia was enthralled.

[Page 202] The little girl walked up to the rope, touched it, and asked the housemother:
      "Does that mean that on the other side of this rope is my land and I can do whatever I want with it?"
      "Yes, Sonechka, this is your land, and you alone are in charge of everything that will grow on it." "And what will grow on it?"
      "Well, for the time being, as you can see, a lot of different kinds of grasses. But look over there, on your neighbors' plots — they've already started planting apple trees and pear trees, and a whole bunch of other fruit trees, and they'll soon! have flourishing orchards. And when you grow up, you will decide what to plant on your land and where to put it, so that it will look beautiful, just like the others."
      Sonia bent over and crawled under the rope onto her hectare of land. She took several steps along the rope, carefully examining the ground and all the little creatures twittering and darting about on the grass. She walked as far as a little birch-tree growing on the plot and touched its slender trunk. She turned to the housemother, and in a somewhat excited voice asked:
      "What about this little tree? The little birch tree? Is that mine too?"
      "Yes, Sonechka, as of now the birch tree belongs only to you, since it's growing on your land. When you get older, you'll be able to plant other trees here... But now it's time to go. It'll soon be lunch-time and I have to get back to the group."
      The little girl turned to look at her plot and stood silently contemplating it.

Sonia, who didn't even have a small corner of the orphanage she could call her own, wouldn't budge. She pleaded with the housemother.

[page 203] "I beg of you, very, very much, to please let me stay here. You go on ahead, and I'll come back on my own."
      "How will you get back? It's thirty kilometers!"
      "I'll make it," replied Sonia firmly. I'll walk and I'll make it. Maybe I'll take the bus. Please let me have some time on my land all by myself"
      The driver of the [bus], who happened to be the proprietor of the plot next door to Sonia's, overheard the conversation and proposed:
      "Let the girl stay here until this evening. I'll take you back now, and bring her home tonight."
      After a moment's thought the housemother agreed. How could she refuse, after seeing the face of this little girl standing behind the rope, awaiting her decision.

The bus driver invited Sonia to have dinner later with him and his wife, and he would drive her back to the orphanage that evening. Sonia was delighted.

[page 204] "Thank you," answered Sonia, now extremely happy.
      After the [bus] had departed, Sonia walked along the rope strung between the stakes. She walked slowly, sometimes pausing to sit down on the grass and touch something with her hands before continuing on. In this fashion she walked around the whole perimeter of her lot.
      Then she stood in the middle of her hectare and surveyed all sides of the perimeter. And then all at once, she threw her hands in the air and began running, jumping and spinning around.

Sonia had a meal with the driver and his wife, Klava, and went immediately back to her land. The wife tried to help Sonia, but Sonia was determined to stay on her own land as long as possible.

[page 204, 205] After lunch Klava noticed how tired the girl looked after trotting around her plot, and invited her to have a nap on a folding cot. But Sonia, tired as she was, replied:
      "If possible, can you give me some old clothing I can spread out to lie down on. I'll take a nap on my own piece of land, by the birch tree."
      Nikolai [the bus driver] set up the cot with a mattress and blanket beside the birch tree on Sonia's plot. The girl lay down and immediately fell into a deep sleep. This was her first time sleeping in her own kin's domain.

Every day after that, Sonia asked if she could go to her own land. But it was impossible as she was too young to take the bus by herself and there was no staff to supervise her. It was a difficult time for Sonia and for the orphanage staff who could tell how much it meant for Sonia.

[page 205] Finally the orphanage's director came up with a solution that was acceptable to Sonia. He told her:
      "Right now, Sonia, it's not possible to take you out to your plot, since apart from everything else, you still have a fortnight's study ahead of you. Two weeks from now the summer holidays will begin. I'll have a word with the neighbors next door to your plot, and if they agree to watch out for you, then during the holidays we'll send you off to your plot for a time — for a week, at least, or maybe longer.
      "By the way, you could spend this coming fortnight getting yourself ready for your land. Here, take these two brochures and read up. One of them tells how to make planting beds, and the other is a guide to medicinal herbs. If you can be on your best behavior these next two weeks, I'll also get ready for you a selection of seeds for the holidays."
      Sonia was on her best behavior. She did all her lessons conscientiously, and devoted all (absolutely all!) her spare time to reading the two brochures the director had given her. When she lay down to sleep, she dreamt about the beautiful plants that would grow on her plot. On one all the other children were fast asleep, the night-nurse noticed Sonia drawing sketches of trees and flowers by the moonlight streaming through her window.

Sonia stayed at the home of her neighbors, Nikolai and Klava, for three days and then someone gave him a gift of a tent for this birthday. Sonia asked if she might sleep on her land in the tent.

[page 207] "Of course, go ahead, if you like. What is it — do you find your room stuffy?"
      "The room's fine," replied the girl. "But everybody here spends the night on their own land, while my land is all alone at night. There are lights burning on many of the other plots at night-time, but mine's all dark."
      "So, does that mean you'd like me to set up the tent on your plot?"
      "I'd like that very, very much, Uncle Kolya — if you could set it up beside the birch tree. Only if you have time, and if it's not too inconvenient.

Sonia was soon sleeping in her kin's domain every night and zealously digging her flower and vegetable beds. When Nikolai offered to plow up her beds with his tiller for her, she adamantly refused. "She was fiercely jealous of any encroachment on her territory."

[page 208] People sensed this and endeavored not to cross over the line (marked out by stakes and rope) without her knowledge. Even Nikolai, upon awaking in the morning, when he went to call Sonia to breakfast, would go only as far as the property line and callout to Sonia from there.
      Perhaps it was some kind of extraordinary streak of aspiration toward independence on this young girl's part, or else the fear of becoming a burden to someone, that prevented her from asking anybody any favors. Even when one of the community residents tried to offer her clothing, or candy, or some sort of equipment, she would politely thank them, but categorically decline the offer.
      In the two weeks she spent on her land, Sonia managed to dig out and plant three vegetable beds, with a huge flowerbed in the middle.

When Sonia's time was up the bus arrived to take her back to the orphanage, but Nikolai intervened with the director and she was allowed to spend another night on her land. The next day the director showed up, waited at the edge of Sonia's land and called to her.

[page 210] "Good day, Sonia. I just stopped by to let you know we're all going off to the sea-side. Would you like to stay here, or join us on our trip?"
       "Stay here!" Sonia didn't just say it, but screamed it.       "I thought as much," responded the director. "So I brought you something by way of box lunches..."
      "No need to trouble yourself, no need to waste your time. I don't need anything."
      "No need? Then what would you have me do? The state provides us with funds for each child in our care. But you are here taking care of yourself, and feeding yourself. Tell me, how can I account for the state funds in a situation like this? No, please be so gracious as to accept these... Okay, Alexeich, you can go ahead and unload them.
      "Will you allow us to come in, Sonia? Maybe you'll show us your place here?"

As soon as Sonia realized she would be allowed to stay on her land, she invited the director and Nikolai (whom she now dubbed Uncle Koyla, and who narrates this episode) to come onto her land.

[page 211] She led us over to her tent and at once invited us to take a drink of water from the bucket standing alongside.
      "Here, have some water. I get it from a spring. It's good
      tasting, better than tap water. Do please take a drink."
      "I shan't say no to that," replied the director, drawing a half a mugful of water from the bucket and downing it with gusto. "It's jolly good!"
      The driver and I both took a drink and complimented Sonia on her water, to her great delight. It was probably the first time in her life that Sonia had possessed anything of her own. Even if it was just water, it was still something that was hers, something of her own that she could offer to adults. Sonia began to feel like a real participant in the world.
      After that, we sat there listening for maybe an hour and a half or two hours while Sonia regaled us with her report of what she had already planted and what she was going to plant. And she showed us her drawings of her future kin's domain. Only there was no house in the plans she had drawn.

But Sonia had one more surprise for the director, a herb to help a friend of hers at the orphanage to get well.

[page 212] "Oh, I forgot something again," spluttered Sonia. "Just a moment." She pulled back one of the tent flaps, and we saw bunches of various herbs hanging on a tent wire stretched taut. She took out several bunches and offered them to the director.
      "This is celandine. A special kind of herb... This is for Katya in our group, she needs to make a brew with it and drink it. She's so often ill. I read up on celandine in the brochure you gave me. I've dried it already.
      "Thank you..."

At the end of summer Sonia got ready to return to the orphanage. She had over two hundred bunches of various herbs she had dried plus a sack of potatoes and three pumpkins. Uncle Kolya asked her if he should hold the tent for her next summer.

[page 213] "I'll definitely come again next summer. First day of the holidays, I'll be here. You're a good neighbor, Uncle Kolya. Thank you for being such a good neighbor!"
      And she shook my hand just like an adult. And this time it was a much stronger handshake. Sonia had not only got herself a good tan, but she had got stronger and more self-confident as well.

All this from a nine-year-old girl who was making the best of the land which she had been given. She had no house yet, but things were in the work for the community to build a house for her. She asked Uncle Kolya to intercede for her and let the community know how much she appreciated their offer, but that she didn't need a house right then and hadn't decided where to put it. Then something unexpected happened. She found out from her friend Edik that his father was going to burn his construction trailer because his large home was nearly finished. Sonia explained how she had noticed the ground wouldn't grow anything after being burnt over because the earthworms had died, and she pleaded with Edik to ask his father not to burn the trailer but instead give it to her. His father was incredulous and a bit proud — the young girl who usually refused any help, had accepted a gift from his son!

[page 216] As soon as the children had left, the entrepreneur summoned the whole construction brigade that had been putting the finishing touches on his mansion, and said to the foreman:
      "So, now, lads. Take any materials you need and start working around the clock — I'll pay you double time, if you can only refit the trailer's interior to modern European living standards in forty-eight hours. You can leave the exterior shabby, the way it is. But the interior..."
      Forty-eight hours later, next to the birch tree where the tent had been standing on Sonia's plot, the construction trailer with its shabby exterior was set up on a brand new brick foundation. The exterior was indeed shabby, but the builders had primed it for painting, and left tins of Finnish paint and brushes inside.

Sonia used the fancy paint and painted the exterior herself. Soon her trailer became a "little fairy-tale château, covered with ivy and wild grapevines and surrounded by flower-beds." (Page 217) Sonia was a wealthy woman in ten years. She had finished school over nine years and spent the entire tenth year in her kin's domain. Hers was the prettiest of all the kin's domains in the community.

[page 217] While her classmates were leaving the orphanage and going off to parts unknown, trying to get accepted into any kind of academic institution just to get a roof over their heads, or to find any kind of work so they could at least feed themselves, Sonia was already a wealthy woman. The residents of the community would give their surplus fruits and vegetables to a manager. Products grown on domains fetched a higher than-average price. They were exported to countries in the European Union, where they were sold in stores specializing in eco-friendly produce. Sonia gave what she grew on her plot to the manager as well. Though most of what she produced was bought by visitors from the city who had heard about this extraordinary girl and her fabulous domain.

Edik has meanwhile been studying in America and suffering from liver and kidney disorders. He decided to visit home before the operations he was scheduled for. His mother recommends that he and she visit Sonia who is now a respected healer. Edik found that hard to believe and wanted to know how the childhood friend he called Malyavka could have become an expert healer.

[page 218, 219] "How did our Malyavka get to be such an expert?"
      "Well, she's been spending every summer since Grade One on her plot, and every day during the winter she's been reading books on gardening and folk medicine. The child's mind is sharp, and she picks up everything so quickly. She got a lot of it from books. Only people say her real understanding came more from herself They say, too, that the plants understand her. She talks with them."
      "Well, that's our Malyavka for you! How much does she charge for treatment?"
      "Sometimes she charges, but she's also been known to offer help for free. One day last autumn I happened to meet her by the pond. She looked me in the eye and told me:
      "Here, take this herb, make a tea with it and drink it, and it'll get better.' And it did. And there was really something wrong with my eyes, since I had a liver complaint. Now that's gone too.
      "Let's go, son. We'll go and see her. Maybe she can help your liver too."
      "It's not just my liver, Mama. They've already made their diagnosis and they're going to remove one of my kidneys. And no tea's going to help that. Anyway, let's go pay her a visit — it'll be interesting to see Malyavka's domain. They say it's like a Paradise there."

What Edik found was not just a Paradise there, but also an Eve, and heart trouble.

[page 220] "Hello, Auntie Zina! Welcome back, Edward! If you'd like, come into my house or into my garden."
      "Thank you for the invitation. We accept with pleasure," replied Zinaida.
      But Edik didn't say a word and didn't even return Sonia's greeting.
      "You know, Sonia," Zinaida went on as they headed for the garden, "my son has a problem. He's about to have an operation. Even though it'll take place in America, it's still pretty upsetting to me as a mother."
      Sonia stopped, turned around and asked Edik:
      "What's the trouble with you, Edward?"
      "My heart," Edik replied, gasping in his throat.
      "What d'you mean, your heart?" exclaimed Zinaida. "You told me it was your liver and your kidneys. Does that mean you were lying so I wouldn't get overly concerned?"
      "I wasn't lying. But now, Mama, my heart is beating so fast — can't you feel it right here?!" He took his mother's hand and placed it against his chest. "Listen — it's going to rupture and explode if you don't convince this beautiful maiden to marry me at once!"
      "You're such a jokester," laughed Zinaida. "You practically scared me to death!"
      "I'm not joking, Mama."
      "Well, if you aren't joking," Zinaida gaily continued, "you ought to know that half the community have already sent matchmakers over on behalf of their sons. But to no avail Sonia doesn't want to get married. You can ask her yourself why she doesn't want to, but don't set your poor mother up for a fall."
      Edik went up to Sonia and quietly enquired: "Sonia, why have you never married anyone?"
      "Because," Sonia softly responded, "I've been waiting for you, Edik."

Soon Edward and Sonia were married and settled down in Sonia little house. The parents wanted them to live with them, but Edik convinced his father that the large wings he had added to the mansion were unnecessary and lacked the beauty and air of Sonia's domain. Sonia and Edward lived on happily and so far as we know they are doing so to this day.

This is an amazing story. It illustrates dramatically the power of having a kin's domain, even to a small child. How many orphans could have their lives changed as Sonia had hers? But there is another group of adults who are like orphans, the inmates of our prison systems. They have no space to call their own, often sharing a cell with another prisoner. They primarily learn in prison about criminals and put that knowledge to use to harm society when they are released and soon they are back in prison.

But one prisoner had a different vision for the future, and outlined the plan in a petition to the warden.

[page 225] The convict, whose name was Khodakov, proposed acquiring for the facility a hundred hectares of abandoned or unused arable land, to be surrounded by a barbed-wire fence with a watch-tower at each corner — in other words, taking all due precautions to prevent escapes. On this fenced-in hundred hectares ninety prisoners would be engaged in agricultural labor. The applications of those interested were kept in a file in this green folder.

The progression of approvals for Khodakov's proposal was much more difficult than Sonia's, but the concept he had developed was a proposal that followed all the tenets of the law concerning the proper incarceration of prisoners. It also provided a financial boon for the prison proper because half of the produce from the prisoners farms would be sent to feed the prisoners at the home prison. The remaining half belonged to the individual domain residents in farming prison who could share it with their families or sell it to local food merchants. What tipped the scales for the warden's decision was a new requirement from his superior for him to take a 150 new prisoners, which he had no room for. The new farming prison would hold that number, and there were that many volunteers ready to populate the farms. Each prisoner was allocated a small cell in their own hectare and would be locked in each night and released each morning.

The results were as dramatic as in Sonia's case. Prisoners became land owners, farmers, and they studied the seed and agricultural catalogs. They were able to convince the agriculture experts that they knew how to plant potatoes, corn, tomatoes, etc. When asked about what they should do before planting tomato-seeds, their answer surprised the horticultural experts.

[page 239] "Before planting the seeds in the soil you have prepared for them, you must put them in your mouth and hold them in the saliva under your tongue for at least nine minutes."

The prisoners under Khodakov's guidance had all studied the Anastasia books and learned about the principles of the seed as physician. They knew that the plants would respond to the individual human planter's own biochemistry and produce food designed for his health by reading the bodily fluids and excretions of the planter.

[page 240] It must be moistened in one's own saliva, to infuse it with information about one's self. After it has been in a Man's mouth, after being in his saliva at normal body temperature for nine minutes, the seed will awaken from its dormancy and know right off what it is to do, and for whom it is to bear fruit. If a Man is suffering from any ailments or abnormalities, the seed will try to bear fruit to remove such abnormalities.

The plan was, after much effort and persuasion, finally accepted and it proved to be a bounty for the prison system and a boon for the prison farmers.

[page 247] All summer long the new zone provided the prison cafeteria with fresh greens, then cucumbers, tomatoes, and beets.
      In the fall each prisoner offered up — from the plot of land entrusted to him — five sacks of potatoes, along with several dozen jars of salted and canned cucumbers and tomatoes. The prison commissary was provided with a whole winter's supply of beets, carrots, horseradish and other vegetables.
      An unusual scene took place in the autumn at the new zone's controlled-entry point. In contrast to all other prison facilities in the world, where foodstuffs and other treats would be passed to the prisoners from outside, in this new zone they were moving in the opposite direction.

The general who had to authorize the new zone visited and was chagrined to find vines growing up the side of the fenced in area. He demanded they be removed as a potential escape route over the fence. One of the zone's officers explained that the flowers' fragrance would make any escapee very easy to track down with dogs, and prisoners know that. The general asked how many prisoners have been recaptured by the dogs. The answer was none. The prisoners, realizing the futility of climbing over the fence, hadn't attempted an escape in five years.

The general asked: why the security guards in the watch-towers then? and was told: to protect the zone from the outside world, from the wives of prisoners attempting to get in! Some wives even tried to tunnel under the fence to get in.

As part of Khodakov's original plan, when the terms of all the prisoners in the zone were fulfilled the security fence and watch towers would be dismantled and moved to a new unused area of arable ground to build a new prison zone. The former prisoners would now be voluntary residents of the former prison zone, each living in his own kin's domain and reunited with their wives and family members. They would be making a prosperous living on their own land and would have no wish to ever return to a life of crime. Isn't this the ultimate end of incarceration of criminals? Can anyone think of a more effective and efficient system of accomplishing that end?

The next project, outlined in Chapter Twenty-Seven, "A law for deputies elected by the people", describes how the Representative to the Parliament or Congress are led to live in their own kin's domains, away from the artificial sources of information, and close to the needs of the people they serve. Do you, dear Reader recognize the problem? Our representatives to Congress live in this vicious circle described in this next passage. When you have a closed circle like this, only a stupendous bootstrap effort can break the circle and achieve a release of productive energies.

[page 265] "You see, we've got what amounts to a closed circle here. Each time, you elect those who seem to be the best people for the job, but then, no sooner are they elected than you start calling them the worst people."
      "But just how do we get out of this vicious circle?"
      "For the past five thousand years there has been no better way than the one proposed by Anastasia, and there won't be in the foreseeable future."

The solution proposed is land. A kin's domain for the deputy or representative to Congress. But with an ingenious design which is outlined below. Read it and see if you think it might work.

[page 266] "But on what basis should the deputies be granted land on special terms or the same as for everyone else?"
      "The same as for everyone else, though not exactly. Every deputy should be allotted at least a hundred and fifty hectares of land on which a new type of community will be established, according to the principles Anastasia talks about. Of the hundred and fifty hectares granted for lifetime use, the deputy may keep one for himself, as long as his family is small and no additions are in the offing. In cases where the deputy has children who are already forming their own families and they want to set up domains of their own, a hectare should be set aside for each of his children's families. Thus the deputy himself will end up with one, or three, or five hectares of land, depending on the size of his family."

You will need to read the entire chapter to get the full and robust scope of the proposal, but the effect of living in a kin's domain inside of a large community of other domains on the deputies' decisions will change the government and the land for the better.

[page 267, 268] "It is not their laws or their morality that will prevent deputies from making wrong decisions, but their kin's domains. And for people who have their Motherland, money will lose its primary importance. Only in his kin's domain can Man obtain the complete range of nutrition he needs, including nourishment for the proper functioning of the brain. But this is extremely important for people who have a lot of thinking to do."

When money loses its primary importance, deputies will be immune to bribes to make decisions contrary to the well-being of the land and kin's domains. When you live in a self-sufficient environment, what need do you have of government except to defend your land from foreign invaders? And when potential invaders see how successful and self-sufficient you have become in your own kin's domains, they will be more tempted to imitate you than to invade you.

[page 269] The more Anastasia's grandfather went on about the kin's domains, the more distinctly the joyful picture of our country's future became etched in my consciousness. Can you just imagine?! Imagine! Three hundred and sixty deputies of our State Duma each taking a hundred and fifty hectares of land and organizing three hundred and sixty marvelous new-style communities! Each deputy will then be showing not just in his words, but in his actions, what he is capable of achieving.
      And Russia will bear witness to the first three hundred and sixty oases in which Russian Federation citizens will begin to live in actual human conditions. Then these deputies will pass legislation. And, naturally, there will be not a single law harmful to the environment.
      They will pass laws guaranteeing the right of each citizen to obtain his own small piece of the Motherland. They will stand up for this right, because each of them will have their Motherland.

Anastasia's grandfather is the real author of this book, at least the important parts of the book in the first and last chapters. He makes a potent case for returning to the concept of a Motherland in which each person owns a piece of that blessed land and is self-sufficient and happy upon it. Russia is changing today because of Anastasia's ideas. One cannot find good news on the television stations who make money by displaying fear and devastation over the air. One can only find good news in the heart, in the hearth, and in the blessedness of one's own kin's domain. And that is my prayer, my fervent wish for you, dear Reader.


All Published Volumes of The Ringing Cedar Series

To Read any book listed, Click on Ringing Cedars Logo below and order yourself a copy. Click Here to Order a copy of any book in the Ringing Cedars Series

Book 1:       Anastasia
Book 2:       The Ringing Cedars of Russia
Book 3:       The Space of Love
Book 4:       Co-creation
Book 5:       Who Are We?
Book 6:       The Book of Kin
Book 7:       The Energy of Life
Book 8.1:    The New Civilization, Part 1
Book 8.2:    Rites of Love, Part 2

---------------------------- Footnotes -----------------------------------------

Footnote a. How can you personally protect yourself from these deleterious thoughts which bombard you from the media, from people in public places and offices, from your family and friends? Jonathan Parker offers this way of canceling those thoughts instantly: Simply say the word CANCEL emphatically to yourself! Imagine a Cancel-sign, a circle with a slash diagonally across it, over whatever imagine appear in your mind. Rightly understood, your thoughts create elementals which are loosed into the world to create further havoc, but with a quick CANCEL you can eradicate them at the source.

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Footnote 1. [page 1, footnote] Man — Throughout the Ringing Cedars Series, the word Man with a capital M is used to refer to a human being of either gender. For details on the word's usage and the important distinction between Man and human being please see the Translator's Preface to Book 1.

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Footnote 2. Likeness is the noun or content form of the verb or process form of to be like. When we say a child is like his father, we mean like in exactly that way. Rightly understood, "Made in the likeness of God" means that we have similar processes (not looks).

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Footnote 3. For example, a school has been designed, built, and is being run in Russia by children. In this school, children learn subjects in a few weeks that require years in a regular school taught by adult teachers with their comparatively glacial thinking abilities.

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Any questions about this review, Contact: Bobby Matherne


Footnote 4. There seems to be little difference between the public and private school systems today as far as how they slow down their students thinking processes. The salient exception that I know of is the Waldorf Schools and other school systems as designed by Rudolf Steiner. Even science is badly taught by those who give answers instead of posing questions. See The Marriage of Sense and Thought by Stephen Edelglass etal.

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Footnote 5. A hectare is square of one hundred meters on each side. About 330 feet square.

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Footnote 6. See the book Krewe by Errol Laborde which details the early history of New Orleans Mardi Gras. My review is here: .

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