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  • Barry Shirley


Hi Guys. In this March 2022 blog (Issue 26) I contemplate the subject of ‘Deep Fake Humanity’.

As in my previous blogs, I will draw on the views and opinions of past and current masters, sages, mystics, gurus, philosophers and generally wise people. I also tap into worldly belief systems, religions and philosophies to draw on ancient knowledge and wisdom. So, if you are beginning to realise there is more to this life than you think, and you have the merest hint of something happening in yourself – read on.

These monthly blog posts are designed for those interested in mindfulness/spirituality/philosophy and will only give you a taste of the information, knowledge and wisdom that is out there (and all points raised can easily be further researched). I will also include text from my previous blogs as appropriate.

All news about the world appears to be a ‘sh*t show’ at present but how should we look at it? Whether you are spiritually conscious or not, should we engage with what is going on in the world? maybe it’s a case of if you do not become aware of the darkness in the world how can you contribute positively to the concept of humanity?

Humanity certainly looks to have lost its way (unfortunately this is a constant theme espoused by many pundits throughout recorded history) and as I write this the Ukraine/Russia crisis is dramatically unfolding. The publicly declared rationale for the invasion seems to be reflected in Jason Stanley's book, How fascism Works (2020),...Fascist politics, by contrast, characteristically contains within it a demand to mythologize the past, creating a version of national heritage that is a weapon for political gain. It would appear that humanity will suffer again!

In the modern technical landscape, we have already seen what current social media/digital manipulation can produce in terms of fake videos of famous persons fraudulently depicting false events (colloquially called deep fake videos). Are we also being brainwashed by social media and the general media with a fog of information from governments of all persuasions with interventionist attitudes unleashing propaganda for their own purposes?

From my point of view, it would appear so, with some people appearing to have lost their ‘brains’ into their smart phones. My impression is that the same can be said for extreme conspiracy theorists who do not appear to have proper concerns for humanity and are disappearing down a digital ‘rabbit hole’. In the latest annual threat assessment, delivered by the Australian Director General of Security, Mike Burgess, he highlights growing concerns about online radicalisation.

He said, “More time in those online environments – without some of the circuit breakers of everyday life, like family and community engagement, school and work – created more extremists.”

I have written a number of previous blogs that might assist in understanding and responding to these current themes – see issue 23 (‘How false and misleading information can affect our human and spiritual experience’) and issue 15 (‘Resisting ‘Fake News’).

Everyone has an opinion and even as we reap the benefits of this amazing modern era, we still find the ugly heads of ultra-nationalism, patriotism, authoritarianism (including extreme politics) and fascist patterns, all espousing the language of virtue to bring us the so-called ‘truth’. When these points have an historical driver for a community or culture (as in the ‘us and them’ context) often the irrational overrides any rational aspects.

This is all nothing new. Charlie Chaplin (1889/1997) was a 20th century English comic, filmmaker, and composer who rose to fame in the era of silent film. His 1940 film The Great Dictator was his first film with sound (and was a political satire of Adolf Hitler, the Nazis, Mussolini and anti-Semitism). He played the character of a Jewish barber who is mistaken for a dictator he resembles and is asked to take his place.

The following is a speech he wrote and delivered for the end of the film and unfortunately its words are still relevant today:

“I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone - if possible - Jew, Gentile - black man - white. We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness - not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way.

Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery [i.e. technology in today’s terms] that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical. Our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent, and all will be lost…

The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men - cries out for universal brotherhood - for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world - millions of despairing men, women, and little children - victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people.

To those who can hear me, I say - do not despair. The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed - the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish…

Soldiers! don’t give yourselves to brutes - men who despise you - enslave you - who regiment your lives - tell you what to do - what to think and what to feel! Who drill you - diet you - treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men - machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate! Only the unloved hate - the unloved and the unnatural! Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty!

In the 17th Chapter of St Luke it is written: “the Kingdom of God is within man” - not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people have the power - the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure.

Then - in the name of democracy - let us use that power - let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world - a decent world that will give men a chance to work - that will give youth a future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfil that promise. They never will!

Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people! Now let us fight to fulfil that promise! Let us fight to free the world - to do away with national barriers - to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness. Soldiers! in the name of democracy, let us all unite!”

Final speech from The Great Dictator Copyright © Roy Export S.A.S. All rights reserved.

What is humanity? All dictionaries indicate that whilst the word humanity collectively depicts the human race, a person’s humanity mainly relates to the qualities of being kind, thoughtful, compassionate and sympathetic towards others.

And as social observation shows us when we get to know people of different ethnicity, culture, creeds, religions, etc; we all want the same basic needs. That is, peace, safety, security, happiness, love, fulfilment, validation and so on. So, how difficult is coexistence with everyone? It comes down to how you perceive things and is influenced predominantly by your ego (inciting fear and anger), your position in the various culture wars and good old fashioned propaganda.

My yoga teacher introduced me to a neat new word recently in the form of ‘sonder’ (noun) which has been used a lot in recent years on Tumblr and Reddit and other social media. It is relevant to this blog’s subject and means: the realization that each random passer-by is living a life as vivid and complex as your own – populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness – an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk. – From the Dictionary of Urban Sorrows – see commentary at:

In overall terms of humanity, the Barret Academy for the Advancement of Human Values is a London based international think tank which seeks to provide evidence-based advice on the evolution of human consciousness. Specifically, the Barret Blog website depicts the recent results of half a million values assessments and reports as follows:

“Five of the top values are about how we relate to the people in our lives – family, caring, respect friendship, and trust. This suggests that inter-personal safety is a fundamental priority for most people. Historically, personal safety has always been linked to belonging and identity”.

He concludes; “We cannot grow and develop unless we feel safe. Once we feel safe, then self-realization becomes our main priority. If we want to build a positive future for everyone, we must create the conditions in our society that allow people to feel safe, especially our children, and support everyone in their self-expression. Feeling safe is intimately linked to belonging and belonging is intimately linked to identity.”

In a similar vein, whilst a little bit old (2015), please also see the following article by Professor Melanie Randle and Richard Eckersley on how people rate the risks of global threats to humanity. The four-country study also asked people about different responses to the threats. These responses were categorised as Nihilism (the loss of belief in a social or moral order; decadence rules), Fundamentalism (the retreat to certain belief; dogma rules), or Activism (the transformation of belief; hope rules). It found:

  • a large majority (78%) agreed “we need to transform our worldview and way of life if we are to create a better future for the world” (Activism);

  • about one in two (48%) agreed that “the world’s future looks grim, so we have to focus on looking after ourselves and those we love” (Nihilism); and

  • more than one in three (36%) said “we are facing a final conflict between good and evil in the world” (Fundamentalism).

In terms of trying to indicate how we are all the same, there are many aspects of metaphysics and science today that coincide and tend to confirm the ancient spiritual texts where they indicate that we are all of the same essence and animated by the same cosmic force. Our body structure is temporary, and science confirms that it is made of the stuff of stars and returns to those atomic elements when it dies.

However, what is animating us? What makes our body move? Indigenous, eastern and western belief/philosophy systems all suggest there is a life force or a subtle vibrational energy with literally hundreds of names, such as; Consciousness, Prana (Hindu universal energy), Spirit, Qi (chi vital life force – Chinese), Soul, Atman (Hindu soul), Elan Vital (vital force), God, Mana (Maori elemental force), Baraka (indwelling spiritual force), Ha (Polynesian breath of life), Tummo (inner fire), Orenda (Iroquois spirit energy), Pneuma (Greek breath of life) etc.

We are aware. We are conscious. And we are made from the same stuff as the heavens – we are by extension the universe!

To assist in understanding this connection with the cosmos, consciousness and humanity as a whole, both Albert Einstein and Nicola Tesla spoke about energy and vibration. Albert Einstein (German born physicist and founder of the Theory of Relativity) is reported to have said: “Everything is energy and that’s all there is to it. Match the frequency of the reality you want, and you cannot help but get that reality. It can be no other way. This is not philosophy. This is physics.”

Nicola Tesla (famous Serbian/American inventor) said: “If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”

Dr Moog (American electronic music pioneer and inventor of the Moog synthesizer) said: “The more you get into material and matter, all you realize is in matter, there is energy. There is a blur between energy and consciousness. All material is conscious to some extent or another. All material can respond to some extent or another to vibrations of energy that is different to energy you learn about in physics.”

The following is a link to a Scientific American article from 2018 titled: The Hippies Were right: It’s all about Vibrations, Man! In the article the scientists suggest that everything in the universe is constantly in motion, vibrating, oscillating and resonating at various frequencies. They humorously quip that the ‘Hippies’ (counterculture of the 60’s) got it right when they always referred to whether the vibes were right in their quest for a utopia based on love and peace.

Similarly, in eastern philosophy/belief systems this is not something new. According to both ancient Indian Vedic texts in Hinduism and Tibetan Buddhism, Aum or Om as it is known in the west, is the primordial sound of creation. It is used by yoga practitioners as a word to chant and meditate on. The ancient sage Patanjali produced the yoga sutras approximately1700 years ago in order to facilitate and reach a deep inner knowledge of the Self and self-realisation. “Cessation of thought and Samadhi is attained by devotion with total dedication to Ishvara.” – Yoga Sutra 1.23.

Importantly, Ishvara is being beyond one form yet expressed through all forms – universal consciousness - pure vibration. “It is never-ending. …. the basic sound (Om) is always vibrating in you. It is the seed from which all other sounds manifest…. (Om) has the power to create everything.” – Swami Satchidananda, The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.

Om (Aum) is considered one the most powerful words in the Universe because the vibration from chanting its three lyrical syllables call our body, mind and spirit home (i.e. Ahhh oooo mmm). In Nada yoga, which is an ancient Indian metaphysical system, the entire cosmos and all that exists in the cosmos, including human beings, consists of vibrations, called Nada.

In the Nada yoga practice an individual’s mind is unified with the cosmic consciousness through the flow of sounds. Nada yoga also describes four different sound types in the different dimensions of consciousness. Om is referenced in the early Upanishads and Vedas as far back as the 7th or 6th Century BCE.

There are numerous texts, books and web references to Om (Aum) which can be easily accessed for further consideration.

In the West, the late Dr David Hawkins (noted US author, lecturer, clinician, physician and scientist) also referred to the scale of emotions as energy corresponding with the levels of consciousness. He asserts that everything emits energy, either positive or negative. He states that: “Intuitively, we know the difference between a positive person (friendly, genuine, considerate) and a negative one (greedy, deceitful, hateful). The energy of Mother Teresa was obviously different from the energy of Adolf Hitler. ‘Like goes to like’. The different energies constellate in ‘attractor patterns’ or ‘levels of consciousness’.”

He devised a Map of Consciousness where each level of consciousness is calibrated on a logarithmic scale of energetic power, ranging from 1 – 1000. “The level of full enlightenment (1000), at the top of the Map, represents the highest level attainable in the human realm; it is the energy of Jesus Christ, the Buddha, and Krishna. The level of shame (20) is at the bottom, close to death, representing bare survival. The level of Courage (200) is the critical point that marks the shift from negative to positive energy. It is the energy of integrity, being truthful, empowerment, and having the capacity to cope. The levels of consciousness below Courage are destructive, whereas the levels above are life supportive.”

Refer to his books: Power vs Force, The Hidden Determinants of Human Behaviour [1995], 2012 and Letting Go, The Pathway to Surrender 2012.

To combat aspects of mass delusion and the normalisation of extreme politics we could draw on the wise words of 20th century Philosopher Bertrand Russell on the point of asking questions we might never answer.

See @philosophybreak on Instagram (paraphrased from that post) as follows: In his popular 1912 book, The Problems of Philosophy, Russell argues that regardless of whether we find answers to the ’big’ questions, it is vital to keep alive our speculative interest in the universe which is apt to be killed if we limit ourselves to what can be known. Why? Because it is precisely in philosophy’s uncertainty that we find its value.

As Russell puts it: “The person who has no tincture of philosophy goes through life imprisoned in the prejudices derived from common sense, from the habitual beliefs of their age or nation… to such a person the world tends to become definite, finite, obvious; common objects rouse no questions, and unfamiliar possibilities are contemptuously rejected.” As soon as we begin to philosophize, however, we find that “even the most everyday things lead to problems which only very incomplete answers can be given.”

So, although philosophy causes uncertainty as to what things are, it greatly increases our knowledge as to what things could be and removes the somewhat arrogant dogmatism of ‘those who have never travelled into the region of liberating doubt.’

And humbling our certainty leads to another important value, Russell continues... By dwelling on subjects bigger that ourselves, we attain a life-affirming tranquillity. “Contemplation enlarges not only the objects of our thoughts, but also the objects of our actions and our affections; it makes us citizens of the universe, not only of one walled city at war with the rest.” So why ask ‘big’ questions? As Russell concludes, because they “enlarge our conception of what is possible, enrich our intellectual imagination, and diminish the dogmatic assurance which closes the mind against speculation".


  • “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced – James Baldwin (1925/1987) - US writer and activist.

  • “Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.” - Helen Keller (1880-1969) - deaf-blind author and political activist.

  • “What is intolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly….” Voltaire (nom de plume of Francois-Marie Arouet) – (1694/1778) - French enlightenment writer, historian and philosopher.

  • “You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.” - Mahatma Gandhi (1869/1948) - Indian lawyer, anti-colonial nationalist, political ethicist and spiritual leader.

  • “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” – Viktor Frankl (1905/1997) – Austrian neurologist, psychiatrist, philosopher, author, and Holocaust survivor.

  • “The river that flows in you also flows in me.” – Kabir Das (15th century) – Indian mystical poet.

Take away

  • Take breaks from social media, news or negative low vibration TV – concentrate on your dharma (i.e. one’s nature and moral principles that apply to all beings and things – selflessness/right behaviour) and become more self-aware of your higher Self.

  • Follow the good news on sites such as The Good News Network -

  • Embrace life’s uncomfortable truths, find your light, contemplate and question things more deeply in order to do something, however small, to uphold humanity.

  • Contemplate the new word ‘sonder’ and the fact that fundamentally we are all the same with the same wants, needs, hopes, concerns and fears. Look for the common ground.

  • Also, try yoga, along with meditation – a natural combination for overall well-being. If already practicing yoga and meditation – go deeper – both higher vibration activities!

Compiled by Baz Shirley.


*See also:

Instagram: @bazabstractart - Facebook: Barry Shirley

And all my previous posts on:*

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