Opinion: Critical Thinking

20120220-_MG_6032By Chuck Robison 
It’s time to stop hitting the snooze button and WAKE UP. The “owners” of our country are hell bent on destroying the whole American Dream so they can get all the money. Nothing new about that. What’s new is this conflict has now become totally absurd.

Texas Republicans included in their 2012 Platform this bright idea:

“Knowledge-Based Education – We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.” (Valarie Strauss, Washington Post, 7-9-12)

Now why would any leadership organization oppose skills for thinking critically?

“A McDonald’s employee called the company’s McResource help line to ask what she could do to afford her heating bill, and the operator told her to use public assistance.
The recorded call was released just a week after a major report found that more than half of fast food workers rely on public assistance programs, costing taxpayers some $7 billion per year.” (UPI, 10-25-13)

And you were told we want to get people off of welfare and into good jobs.

“Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest private sector employer, is also the biggest consumer of taxpayer supported aid. According to Florida Congressman Alan Grayson, in many states, Wal-Mart employees are the largest group of Medicaid recipients. They are also the single biggest group of food stamp recipients.” (Barry Ritholtz Nov 13, 2013 Bloomberg)

And you wondered why Wal-Mart Employees were creating their own Thanksgiving food bank for fellow employees who could not afford to feed their families…..after all, they had “good jobs” with one of the biggest employers in the country. The family owners of Wal-Mart are worth more than 120 Billion Dollars and they oppose the establishment of a fair minimum wage. And currently Wal-Mart ads feature what a great place it is for a career.

It sounds like the next stop will be the government being forced to re-create 18th century workhouses where poor people were imprisoned for their poverty and forced to do menial labor.

The reality is, we have been trained to believe that food stamp recipients are welfare cheats who are too lazy to work. Given the facts, this is proof that we need to teach critical thinking from kindergarten on up.

Critical Thinking, should we ever teach it, would begin with moral precepts and community responsibility. When did we start to believe that Ayn Rand defined the soul of America? Rand’s Atlas Shrugged has been ranked as second only to the Bible as one of the most influential books in the lives of modern readers, and more than 30 million copies of her books have been sold. Her version of Individualism and The American Dream portrays a few strong characters whose drive and ambition gains the world for them at the price of the many.

There is nothing moral about this view of our purpose here. It is simply selfishness gone wild. As Americans we tell the world this is a free and supportive country, while at the same time we glorify pure self-interest, forgetting, among many others, President Teddy Roosevelt’s admonition that “This country will not be a permanently good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a reasonably good place for all of us to live in.”

The truth is, unless we become critical thinkers in the public discourse, we will see our country pass over the tipping point of no return to common decency and compassionate care for each other. And never doubt that Karma affects countries as it does individuals.

The Bible asks the question: “Am I my brother’s keeper?” And the Real Answer is, “No, we are our brothers’ brothers.” And it is time to wake up and have a family reunion.

Tom Campbell in Santa Cruz, California

After we interviewed Tom with Bruce Lipton at Bruce’s home, we drove about 30 miles to Santa Cruz, California and met Randy Masters. Randy opened his beautiful home for a select group of people who came at about 6:00PM and Tom gave them a classic presentation of the major points of his masterpiece, My Big Toe (Theory of Everything).

Here is Tom’s presentation in three segments…..about two hours and forty minutes. Seems like a long time, but you will walk away wanting to know more about Tom and his work. Karen and I believe Tom is setting the intellectual and scientific stage for this century and these interviews (we have five separate sets of interviews with Tom on this site) are going to be of Historical Importance sometime in the near and also distant future.

We are very grateful for Patricia Carney making all the right connections so that this presentation could happen with total grace.

Joseph Chilton Pearce and the Crack in the Cosmic Egg

Joseph Chilton Pearce, The Crack in the Cosmic Egg from Chuck Robison on Vimeo.

We interviewed Joseph Chilton Pearce at The Monroe Institute in Fabor, Virginia as part of the 40 Days and 40 Nights Video Tour in October 2011. For nearly half a century, Joe has been probing the mysteries of the human mind. Author of The Crack in the Cosmic Egg, Exploring the Crack in the Cosmic Egg, Magical Child, Magical Child Matures, Bond of Power, and Evolution’s End, one of his overriding passions remains the study of what he calls the “unfolding” of intelligence in children.

He is a self-avowed iconoclast, unafraid to speak out against the myriad ways in which contemporary American culture fails to nurture the intellectual, emotional, and spiritual needs and yearnings of our young people. Part scholar, part scientist, part mystic, part itinerant teacher, Pearce keeps in close touch with the most brilliant men and women in each field. He creates a unique synthesis of their work and translates the results into a common language.

His most recent book, Death of Religion and the Rebirth of Spirit: A Return to the Intelligence of the Heart (2007), is critically important for where we are now. Our organized religions are stuck in centuries of a particular way of thinking that makes it very difficult to address the changes going on the world of thought today.

Over and over on this tour we met brilliant thinkers and scientists who are making the journey from the intellect to the heart along an unchartered and unmapped path. In our interview, Joe shows us the importance of living from the heart, regardless of what the mind says.

We are also posting this interview on our You Tube Channel where you will find this interview and many of our prior interviews. In the event your internet connection is too slow for Vimeo to work quickly, this is the place to go for a fast solution! We hope you like this addition!

Jim Beal: Explorer of the Cosmos and Psyche

Jim Beal tells us insights from his long career in the sciences and space technology. He was one of the original founders of the Institute of Noetic Sciences with Edgar Mitchel, served as a student and board member at the Monroe Institute, and is now focusing on electro-magnetism and how to safely use it and expand it’s applications. In this powerful interview, Jim reveals the passionate curiosity that led him into some of the most amazing adventures of the past sixty years. Toward the end of this interview, this accomplished man of science discusses the place of spiritual alignment as a component of our successful transition to the next level of evolution.