Beyond Speculative Fiction

 

Are you searching for a fulfilling perspective?

In fiction we can speculate and explore. But is it mere foraging or are we looking to define emergence and process? Having an adventure is fine but we seem to be arriving at choice points. At choice points we are also looking at turning points. Certainly they are more than entertainment and it is my contention that our world social scene is enduring significant choice points. Information technology is exploding and our world is shrinking. That is a dynamic scenario to which we need to attend. What fun? I think not. It is a challenge.

Utilizing Exploration

In fiction I’m not interested in idle exploration but think it is possible to edge into social commentary and define underlying realities and emerging themes. And wouldn’t it be nice if we had the guidance of a challenging but benevolent goddess. By putting the issues in a different light we may gain choices and recognitions. If we are edging into a postcapitalism world we need to pay attention. If deeply hidden themes are surfacing, we need to pay attention.

Essential Recognition

One theme which is clearly surfacing, but is not sufficiently recognized is the gathering import and impact of women. Women have been subjugated but what is happening is more than the liberation of them as they gain control of their fertility. Clearly men feel threatened by their liberation and try to hinder development.

But this is not about fertility. I would contend there is a fundamental threat and it is being expressed in misogyny as women gain power. I utterly fail to see that this is being recognized sufficiently and I expect this thought will not go unchallenged. 

The Power of Women

Let me lightly touch upon the power women hold. They enrapture men and at first men love it but she had best be careful because men don’t yield power easily. And so then there is sexual exploration. The man feels the rush of desire but with fulfillment comes a diminution of his power. And beyond that women are coming to explore themselves and what they wish for themselves. That means the man must yield some things to her. If they achieve true partnership, which takes some effort and negotiation, the outcome offers tremendous benefits—if it can be achieved. But for now we must attend, define and work to achieve a goal we can use for mutual benefit. It is in our interests.

Spirits and Beyond

We can also approach many other issues. Everywhere in human history are stories about spirits and a variety of life forms to be conjured and raised to awareness. Some of this, of course, reflects our need for an eternal life. But it also may just be touching on something that may be. Our senses are defined for specific purposes in our lives as they are. If our senses were different it is possible we would sight layers of life and amazing diversity.

Reaching Out

And the question “Are we alone” relates to this possibility. It also seems we have the yearning to find the other out there for contact and the wonder of diversity. Of course, there is also danger. But wonder does not always pay attention to danger.

And then, of course, there is the universe itself. Monumentally creative and destructive, it is a lure we reach for. We are stardust and have learned that we are. Again there is danger in the maelstrom of the universe but the creativity is worth the danger and we can only begin to see the kinds of encompassing life forms which may exist.

And to come full circle in this commentary I have to say adventure is intriguing but exploration can lead to the most wonderful discoveries. At the same time we must fight our way through our struggle and conflict. It helps to look out and examine our possibilities and what may be. We may strike a chord of guidance. 

Where does speculation lead you?

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

The Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy – Book 1 is Here!

 

At Last! – Publication

It is my pleasure to announce that book 1 of the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy has been published. Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called:Women in Power is now available in paperback and Kindle editions at Amazon.

To me it feels that it has been so long in coming. What began as an idea for a story took on a life of its own. The story began to take on shapes not expected with characters showing up and demanding inclusion.

A Guiding Force

The guiding force was my belief that the movement to empower women is of unparalleled importance for the future of humankind and I thought fiction might be one way to explore and illustrate its significance and potential. And in an exploration truth of an emerging movement was inevitably illusive. Symbolism was essential.

We open with a couple ordained by our Earth Mother Gaia to find each other because their partnership was essential to a larger purpose. We don’t have to wait for them to fall in love. Their loving partnership begins early and is a harbinger of what may be found for the fulfillment of all of us but it also is a core around which the developing crisis of the world swirls.

A Heritage

In the end it is not a simple story alone. This couple has a heritage of people set aside to be stewards of the future of humankind and our planet. And among these people are the warrior women of the Andromeda. They fight for our future but not wantonly.The world these people lead is rich in potentials of so many kinds.

A Story of Our Future

Now we begin to unfold the exploration of our future and study its implications in the first book of the trilogy.

Join us in the exploration of this grand adventure. There is,the story itself, but also, in the reading, the possibility of the creation of a personal exploration. But above all, it is time to consider the meaning of the growing empowerment of women.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

Life Among the Living

 

Do you have a special myth you favor?

Variety of Life Forms

Many of us don’t consider it unreasonable to ask if other life forms really exist. Are there angels, do we have spirit guides and how real are our day or night dreams? Certainly there is a great deal of speculation about paranormal phenomena. It would be impossible to comprehensively enumerate the various kinds of life forms there are and may be. And then should we include various forms of consciousness in humankind? It sounds odd to say that but, in fact, they can be considered.

In fantasy, science fiction and paranormal fiction we see various forms of exploration and belief. The fact of the matter is that it is unreasonable to dismiss any of them out of hand. I consider myself to be a very rational person which translates into meaning rationally it is unreasonable to dismiss them.

Alternative Forms

Alternatives are seen in the belief in spirits of all kinds. We love to think about them, love to read about them and write about them. It seems, though, that we cannot definitively establish their existence. And there is a very sound reason why we can’t. As human beings we have a very specific sensory system which is meant to help us survive in what we call the real world. In most instances we don’t need to sense spirits in order to survive.

Likewise, the head of the patent office early in the twentieth century declared that they might as well close up because everything that could be invented had been invented. He was just a little bit off base or, not in touch with reality. At that time we hadn’t mastered wave lengths for radio or other forms of communications. Now we know that there are all manner of waves humming around us that we can’t sense ourselves.

Dismissing Nothing

As I already noted, I was told when I was getting an education as a psychologist that I was being trained as a scientist. Well, as a scientist I have come to understand that it is irrational and unscientific to dismiss all these various kinds of possibilities. And, decades later I’m not entirely sure what science really is. And, for that matter, it is unscientific to dismiss possible alternatives we do not yet understand or can establish. Where would be without theorizing and exploration.

But still we torment each other. We cry, “Get a grip! You can’t know that. Get a life. I have one and you don’t”. But the fact remains that what has been speculated may well exist and it may be that we haven’t yet been able to reach out to the other life forms—yet. And so we write about them, give them lives we create and yearn for the future. And it is so enriching to engage in this search and speculation. In fact we have better and richer lives when we do it.

Let me know when you have made contact. I want to meet whatever it is. At least as long as it or they are friendly and are willing to share. For now please share your thoughts with me/us.

In the meantime I’m staying tuned with the crowd that speculates.

What alternative life forms do you believe in?

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

Who Cares About Reality? – Just Live Your Life

 

Do you find yourself ever considering the meaning of reality?

Inspiration and Personal Growth

It sounds so simple to forge ahead in life and find inspiration and personal growth as it materializes. But we do not proceed that way and there is this thing called planning and preparing for the future.

Inevitably we have dreams and one of the ways we pursue our dreams is to read. My personal choice has always been speculative fiction, fantasy and science fiction. I want to be intrigued and want to explore. Certainly stories of romance can be enchanting but I usually want to explore more deeply. If a romantic story or movie involves the theme of women rising I am strongly engaged. Something amazing is happening for women and for our partnerships and I want to explore it.

Colliding with Reality

Speculation often leads us into a collision with reality and may hint at what is to come. Let me give two examples. George Orwell’s novel 1984 was published in 1949, shortly after World War II. My takeaway from the book was that we should be alert to the coming power of totalitarianism. Certainly his projection of the future was born out in the growth of communism and more recently we can see his themes in the intrusion of information technology. It seems we are never alone.

And then there is Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001 a Space Odyssey (published in 1968). There are fascinating themes but my personal love is Hal, the onboard computer. I don’t know about your experience but I am convinced that Hal or a descendant is alive and living in my computer! How else to explain its behavior.

Interacting with People’s Lives

In my office, interfacing with people about their lives, I could not simply focus on the here and now. I needed to sight where they were going and how that might interact with where we were going as people. The lives of people became a collage of who we are and what was happening to us collectively.

Being free to explore and to be a free spirit is delightful but inevitably we run into what we call reality and what kind of reality is being created around us. The reality of hippiedom in the 1960s and 1970s was engaging and entrancing. And now the reality and richness of computer based games opens whole new worlds.

An Enchanting and Expanding World

For me though, living on the cusp of reality permits a jump from the cusp of reality into a glowing and growing movement in a new world. It’s the exploration which is so exciting and, by the way, I want my partner with me. In the end it is she who especially enriches my world and my life.
Where do you think humankind is headed?

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon Home Page

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Believing in Ghosts

 

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Do you have unexplained perceptions?
What We Believe

“Modern people don’t believe in ghosts”, seems a reasonable statement except for the fact that many do. Most who do believe probably won’t admit it. We all feel things and occasionally perceive things we can’t explain. We may or may not dismiss the experience.

Myths and Reality

In writing the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy I had to address support of a fantasy and deal with what I did and did not believe. We do not have definitive evidence of the existence of ghosts or spirits although it is widely debated and many believe in various forms.

In most circumstances I would probably say I don’t believe in ghosts or spirits except for the fact that I do. It’s just that I can’t provide a good explanation. But let me tell you how my belief was enhanced.

Innocence

After graduate school my wife and I brought our new baby girl to the Baltimore area. We wanted to live in the country and found a country home to rent. It was a lovely one hundred and twenty year old three story stone house situated in the middle of a three hundred acre farm. We fell in love with it at once.

All was quiet for awhile. But soon in the evening we found our dogs often would suddenly sit up and look at the doorway into the hall. Both of us often felt something, a presence in the hallway. There was an attic on the fourth floor. The door had a hasp with an angled piece of wood firmly placed in it to hold it shut. The problem was the piece of wood was often on the floor and the door often stood open even after we had recently secured it. Our daughter was still and infant and we tended to have no visitors.

Seeking Evidence

At last we sat one evening and asked general (not leading) questions to each other. We concluded we were feeling someone was walking from the attic down the stairs to a small study near the living room. There was no perception he went anywhere else. Yes, it was clearly a he.

Finally I asked the owner about the history of the house. There were a lot of details but the most interesting was the history of renters who either loved the house or who fled for some unexplained reason. We felt the presence was somewhere between benign and positive since we loved the house. We also assumed if you did not love his house you would feel uncomfortable. We learned to simply accept the presence.
Our Conclusion
Then it came time to leave to go to a home we had purchased. As we were preparing to move, in the evenings the dogs went crazy barking at the hallway. The long and short of it was that we felt our unseen friend was drawing closer. There were a lot more details, but that’s the outline. It felt like someone was there and he didn’t want us to leave.

Our new home was even older and we felt no presence in the house. Outside was an entirely different matter. I’ll talk about that in a future post.

Do I believe in ghosts? I have to confess I do, although I don’t know what they really represent and why we can or cannot perceive them. And when it came to writing fiction, I could not dismiss the importance of involving a spirit world. I can’t dismiss the spirits either.

Do you have a clearcut belief one way or the other?

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon page

Cusp of Reality and Visionary themes

 

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Crucial Exploration

There is another story which is related to the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy. That story is the matter of vision in human affairs. The name of this blog is Cusp of Reality and that theme leads us to exploration.

In life it is typically most comforting to dwell in what we term reality. When we do, we believe we know where we are, how things are and what to expect. It may not quite be a delusion to believe in reality but a departure from reality has rewards.

Alternatives to Reality

Accepting alternatives leads to exploration and enriched experiences in the real world and internally. When I was in college I chose to major in psychology and on the first day the professor told us “Psychology is a science”. As I’ve said previously, at many levels, I don’t agree. Certainly there is a place for science but there is also a place to soar into quests for meaning. We are only now confirming the existence of the human unconscious in clear, observable terms. It enriches our lives. And in that unconscious we harbor considerable potential but also deep conflict.

Reality offers stability and reassurance. But vision offers rewards and opportunities for personal explorations. Vision may well offer us beneficial alternative paths. In fact it may lead to salvation of our future.

A Simple Question

When we look at the growing crises in the world, it is instructive to study wave theory and what humankind has learned about self management. In contrast there is the question “What if?” which leads us not into just idle speculation but presents us with options which have their own truths and opportunities.

And then there is the matter of the changing role of women in human society. In its own right it poses a series of questions including “Why now” and “Where will it lead us?” My interest in mythology and its meaning became wedded to the empowerment of women in the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy.

A Matter of Vision

The future of humankind is not ordained. Like all animals we struggle and our future may be glorious or demeaning. We have made leaps forward such as when we grasped the wonder of culture, moved into the industrial age and, it would seem, our renewed threat of conflict comes just as we seem to be entering postcapitalism. Now is the time for vision, but it is far from clear if visionaries will triumph.

Exploration takes many forms. In Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy we will see options. Women in the future world will be ever more prominent. And, of course, there is the matter of the role a goddess may play and the possible existence of other life forms. When we look out the window, open our minds, there is a fascinating array of possibilities for us to explore in order to create a vision to which we can commit ourselves. Combining the lure of myth with the empowerment of women was, well, like a siren call. We begin there.

Do you have a core vision?

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Meaning in the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy

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Are you in search of meaning?

Finding Out Why We Write

Probably I’m not the only one who begins writing not knowing exactly why I am writing. We find the creative process appealing but determine that there is inspiration and discovery.

The question of genre keeps coming up. When I have to choose a genre at publication speculative fiction often doesn’t seem to be an option. But, I prefer that term over fantasy. The word speculative describes the process for me. I find as I go along that I am exploring things and the words “what if” hang in the air.

Alternative Life Forms

The world of humankind is heavy with alternatives as regards our understanding of life forms. We deal in gods, less often goddesses, and weave in beliefs in other life forms in our religions. It is so interesting that we have little if any concrete evidence for the existence of such things as angels and evil spirits but we believe anyway.

Some of our insistence seems to relate to our vivid imaginations. Is that shadow over there a being?

Intriguing Explorations

What I have found is that the exploration of what might be is, in itself, intriguing. And it has no doubt been important in human history. Our exploration of what might be has led us to amazing inventions in such things as information technology. Sitting here in this room, it is quiet (aside from the fact that the furnace just turned on). But I know the room is alive. I can pick up my smart phone and the world comes pouring in. It is in the air! And I can’t see it. Why would anyone seek to investigate the possibility of such a means of communication? What nonsense to even think it possible.

Psychologists like to consider themselves scientists and some of them are. Those of us in the clinical arena have other attributes. In psychotherapy we have to probe the intangibles of the human mind and all the bits and pieces which make up our emotional and cognitive existence.

Leaving the Question Open

From time to time I find myself considering the possibility that there may be other life forms amongst us even if we can’t see, touch or communicate with them. In general, if such beings exist, we have no need to relate to them. Our senses are attuned for specific purposes. But what if one day we found that new levels of being opened to us? Might it happen if there was a new purpose where we had achieved a new level of development? In the history of earth it was not so long ago that we didn’t have language or culture. We found our voice and our systems. We might still find a deeper and more diverse form of life coexisting with us. And these types of thoughts are why I forage in the land of speculative fiction.

Where have you chosen to forage?

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