As we move further into the 21st century, the threats to our country and the world are becoming increasingly apparent. We must take collaborative action to support world survival. The ongoing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, the nuclear posturing by Putin, China’s threats to Taiwan, terrorism, global warming, and the growing waves of corruption in the United States all demonstrate that the human race is facing significant risks. It is disheartening to see how our conditioning and history of endless wars have prevented us from fully embracing the gift of life. The possibility of living in a more interconnected way has the potential to be profoundly inspiring for everyone.
In this context, Robert examines current events and encourages us to join forces to improve mankind’s chances for survival and find grounded wisdom amidst the alienating conditioning that we have come to see as normal. It is vital that we realize we matter and that we can play a significant role in supporting peace and interconnectedness. It is time to act, both in small and large ways, without making any excuses. This is not idealism but rather a realistic approach to the trajectory of our survival on this planet, and how each of us can be active participants in creating a better, kinder, and more connected world.
Note: Below, you’ll find timecodes for specific sections of the podcast. To get the most value out of the podcast, I encourage you to listen to the complete episode. However, there are times when you want to skip ahead or repeat a particular section. By clicking on the timecode, you’ll be able to jump to that specific section of the podcast
The Missing Conversation, Episode 82.
Robert Strock (00:03):
Show me the person that doesn’t understand the wisdom intellectually, that it would be a better world if all men were treated as if they were equal.
On this podcast, we will propose critical new strategies to address world issues, including homelessness, immigration, amongst several others, and making a connection to how our individual psychology contributes and can help transform the dangers that we face. We will break from traditional thinking as we look at our challenges from a freer and more independent point of view. Your host, Robert Strock, has had 45 years of experience as a psychotherapist, author, and humanitarian, and has developed a unique approach to communication, contemplation, and inquiry; born from working on his own challenges.
Robert Strock (00:53):
I’m sending you lots of appreciation for joining us again at the Missing Conversation where we do our very best to address the most pressing issues that the world’s facing, and where we’re looking for the most practical, inspiring, and innovative ideas to support survival on our planet and to enhance human opportunities for everyone. Today we’re gonna penetrate more deeply into how our conscious beliefs that all men and women are created equal is grossly being violated with endless rationalizations, beliefs, actions, and attitudes, and what you and all of us can do in the smallest and largest of ways. And look at what you and all of us can do in the smallest and largest of ways to move in this direction. The point here is not to feel guilty or to not feel helpless or inadequate or more accurately not to be lost in those feelings, but to recognize that you are the one that matters. That all of us individually need to see that we are the ones that matter. And if billions of us start to move in this direction, a whole wave and change and mankind is possible. And that this isn’t out of idealism, this is out of facing the reality we’re in the 21st century and the dangers are glaring. Before I go further into this, I’d like to introduce Dave, my dearest friend for almost 55 years, and also the co-director and and co-founder of the Global Bridge Foundation.
Well, I’m, I’m just grateful to be here and with you and sharing this podcast and this important subject, especially. There’s something very disturbing about even our country calling certain people three-fifths of a person in our constitution. Just to start off as our foundation document and what a world.
Robert Strock (03:16):
What a world, what a country, what a conditioning we’ve all faced. When we look at the potential of all of us as human beings, it’s absolutely inspirational. And when we look at our conditioning and our history, it’s such a sorrow. I feel such a sorrow that we haven’t seen and lived up to our potential and that we’ve gotten lost in the illusion just because we’re born in separate bodies or those of us that were born in privilege and were born in separate bodies. Identify so much with that privilege, identify so much with that separate body that it imperils the whole earth and all of mankind. And as we look at this, and I ask you to look at this from your own eyes, don’t believe anything I’m saying, look at this from your reality. Time is not on our side. If you look at what’s happening in Ukraine with Putin and you see how many innocent civilians like you are being completely annihilated in the most cruel ways.
And then you look at the hundreds, if not thousands of mass death events that have occurred in our human history. And you start to look at China and its threats with Taiwan and terrorism and global warming and corruption starting to be a rival force that’s looking like it wants to dominate the world. And you look at the series that Rachel Maddow had on 15 of our congressional leaders in the early 1940s wanting to join Hitler. We are living in a world that is following instincts that don’t realize the interconnection that we all have. That is becoming so obvious in the 21st century that we are facing massive death to humanity as a real potential. What do you think? Are you facing it? I’ll say it again. Are you facing it? Is it a major factor in your life right now? You are what matters. Every you is what matters.
Every me is what matters. It’s the masses of all of us and those rationalizations that, well, I’m only one person. What difference is it gonna make, only one family? And of course, that’s a natural instinct. So we’re talking about degrees, so please don’t hear this as a preaching that you should, blah, blah, blah. It’s more, there’s a chance that you can be more awake and that might, and frankly I will say that will fulfill you more, not so much if it comes out of guilt, but if it comes out of an awareness that I’d rather be connected, I’d rather reach out more than have death and the danger of death happen to my kids. Maybe if you’re young, I’m listening to this to you, not very likely in my lifetime, but very likely in the next 20, 30, 40, 50 years. Time is not on our side. What do you think? Your reality. The lack of boundaries that we have in our country and in our world toward what Putin is doing, toward what Trump has done, toward the people that were in Congress that were for Hitler and were known and were discovered, and they were not prosecuted.
All of these realities in our past have given us a chance not to be idealists, but to be realists instead of just following the blind conditioning of the normalcy of war, the normalcy of our rage and our anger being projected on other countries, other religions, other political parties, other races. This has given us the greatest opportunity in the history of mankind to face reality because our denial of just being born in separate bodies is now having the potential to glimpse, inaction, lack of involvement, lack of connection, lack of taking small steps, will kill us. If you think that’s dramatic, this is my reality, this is the reality the way it appears to me. You may see it that, ah, kick the can down the road, let them worry about it in a hundred years. Nuclear dangers, ah, so what. If a bunch of people have power, and if they’re threatened, they’re inevitably going to use it unless we wake up in some way and find an alternative.
It’s not just the kicking of the can down the road, to me. It’s living in a country with 400 million weapons with mass shootings, shootings of multiple people at least daily. It is a real dangerous place. This country is just weapons per person, we outnumber more than anywhere in the world. It’s insane.
Robert Strock (09:41):
Yeah. And as horrible as that is, it’s like a grain of sand, you know? Ah. So 10 people die a day. Big deal when you’re talking about billions of people dying. And yes, it’s catastrophic, it’s unspeakably heartbreaking to anyone, even close to those eight or 10 people that are dying or those tens of thousands of people dying in Ukraine. But we’re living in denial. And again, we’re gonna be dealing with that more later. We’re living without international laws and national laws, which is why Putin can do what he’s doing because we don’t have international laws that are enforced regarding trade, regarding military action, regarding making it immediately obvious you’re isolated permanently from all civilized countries. And until it’s law, until we find a way to deal with it, that we can come to an agreement. The danger is even greater until we can see why Trump wasn’t immediately tried when we saw on tv, him promoting whether you want to call it the insurrection or whether you want to call it the attack on the capitol.
I don’t want to get into semantics. When we see the inaction for the couple hours, and all the pleas and all the texts, why has it taken so long? Because even our law enforcement is subject to political pressures and fears and dangers and the laws are not clear. Why haven’t we made those laws? Because the powerful are protecting the powerful. And the people in general are asleep. We are asleep. We’re asleep in our own reality of taking care of ourselves or not being able to take care of ourselves. When I say taking care of ourselves, that’s the best-case scenario. And again, I want to emphasize we’re talking about small changes toward our family and beyond our family that ultimately will lead to it making at least a legitimate question. Can we gradually lower defense and have that go toward cooperation? Not because we’re idealistic, but cuz we see the alternative as death.
Now as I speak the words, I can hear them feeling somewhat hollow. Not because I feel hollow, but cuz I feel helpless and I feel the sleepiness that is there about all of our conditioning. Even in me, there’s an element of “Am I really doing what I’m talking about enough?” And I’ve changed 10 times in the last three years and I know damn well I’m not close to the depth of what I’m speaking about, but I am moving in that direction. And the point is moving in that direction, you moving in that direction. And what do you think? Can you think practically what that would mean? Do you care enough to even start to brainstorm with yourself to talk to your husband or your wife or your kids? Do you wanna raise them in a different way? What professions they choose? As I looked at Dopesick, and saw not only the 70,000 people a year that are dying, but I saw the lack of felonies even to the people that did that.
I saw that even with the 2019 multi-billion dollar lawsuit, it was still profitable. They made profit. That’s what our legal system is doing and has done. Corruption still pays. And for those of you that weren’t aware of it, in 2019, Purdue Pharma had to pay four and a half billion dollars after only having to pay 500 million many, many years earlier. So they ultimately got a bigger price, but how many billions of dollars did they make when you subtract the four and a half billion dollars? It was still relatively easy to move it down to a misdemeanor. So we need to see that the laws are not set up to actually enforce whether that’s international or national crime does often pay. And Dopesick is one of the sickest parts of any kind of series that one can watch. And for those of you who have not watched it, I would highly encourage you to watch it because it is a way of seeing what reality is today.
And it’s a way of starting to take an interest in, I would like to be a voice. I now wanna vote even more. Now I wanna have conversations even more now. Now I wanna make small little steps as a part of my daily life. Now I wanna see that this illusion—or the reality, let’s say—of being in a separate body and it means that I matter 10,000 times more than everybody else is exaggerated. This has been the myth that has been believed throughout history that needs to be reevaluated now as much as possible in these baby steps. And then you look at how power is corrupted and all the years of jailings for people that sold marijuana, all the, you look at Paul Manafort, you know, getting $10 million a year supporting a fake government in Ukraine that was a puppet government and he’s going to jail for four years, four and a half years. And you look at how unjust the system is and what does that mean to you? What it means is the wisdom inside you. Not the wokeness but the awakeness that wants to be living from a place that sees that I wanna move toward all men being more equal. I wanna move toward cooperation. I wanna move toward using my time, energy, and money, my tone of voice, my vote toward survival on the planet cuz we are indeed threatened.
We all need to educate ourselves and we need to give the education to those that are not fortunate enough to have it and find a way to give it through artificial intelligence programmed just for people who have a minimal amount of literacy. How do we do it? Do we do it in pictures? This all needs to be considered. You have a place inside you and you tell me I’m wrong, that knows that you want to move in a direction toward all people being equal, but you have a wave of momentum, a wave of motivation. A wave of conditioning is a tidal wave that is just what you consider as you, it’s a tidal wave of conditioning. And so the wisdom that comes inside is not gonna have the same kind of feeling very likely in our whole lifetime. No matter how hard we work on ourselves. This tidal wave of conditioning needs to be seen as that. So it’s gonna require a voice inside that says, I forgive you, I accept you, and let’s see if we can’t start to move in these small steps.
Civilization itself focused on selective opportunities and there was not looking into how do we create these opportunities for the poorest of the poor. How do we do that? One of the greatest capacities that exists in mankind today is to recognize that the poor are motivated. And microfinance has proven that already. For those of you who don’t know what microfinance is, it’s giving small loans to third-world village people. And they proved that their payback rate of their $200 or $300 was as good as ordinary citizens in America. The myth that the poorest of the poor are not motivated is a horrible myth. One of the big ways that we can move toward all men being created equal is to create opportunities to work, not give money, opportunities to work really inexpensive opportunities for housing, modular housing or whatever is the least expensive that has basic needs met with teaching trades like regenerative agriculture, which we’ve, we’ve talked about in our other podcast where it’s a type of agriculture that has soil that brings carbon out outta the atmosphere and gives the healthiest food possible that can be taught in small communities, poor communities throughout the world, but the will just hasn’t been there.
Just glimpse that. Imagine hundreds of millions of people being given the opportunity to farm in a way locally that’s going to bring arid land into fruitful earth and soil that can serve the earth and serve humanity. This is only one of the many ways that we can visualize hope and trust and faith that our fellow men and women are like us. If you were poor, if you were really, really had no opportunities, imagine being given the opportunity to have a place to live that’s inexpensive and you have a trade to learn. These are the kinds of things that can change the central identity as Dave mentioned earlier or asked earlier, is this our human nature? No, I profoundly say no. This is definitely our human conditioning. This is definitely our sense of self that we have lived with throughout humanity. But show me the person that doesn’t understand the wisdom intellectually, that it would be a better world if all men were treated as if they were equal and they were given the same opportunities.
We now have artificial intelligence, which most of you I’m sure have heard of. And most people are afraid of artificial intelligence cuz they’re afraid that it’s gonna be taken over by corporations and taken over by greedy, selfish, or even worse corrupt countries. And of course that’s a realistic fear, but there’s also a realistic hope that it could be programmed for. How would we start to create inexpensive housing? How could we start giving opportunities to work for the poor? What countries need it the most? What resources are available to those countries? How can we transfer those resources? Where could the money come from? What foundations would be most interested? What, what countries would tax for this benefit? And you start to get a glimpse that the world could start to turn the sanity inside us. The simple common sense wisdom inside us could start to bear fruit, but not out of idealism, but out of the vision that we wanna protect our families, we wanna protect ourselves.
We wanna fill a hole inside us that many of us are not aware of, but some are aware of it, an emptiness because we’re not feeling connected. Can you see the possible vision of billionaires, of which I am seeing, contributing to artificial intelligence for positive benefit? I haven’t yet seen it be for opportunities for the poorest of the poor, but it excites me. It inspires me. If you are out there and you have a possibility of fostering that, please be in touch, not only with me, but with other people, with other foundations. It’s only gonna take the hundreds of thousands of people that are devoting their lives to move toward equality, finding each, fostering each other because that intelligence will increase exponentially. So as we wind down this episode, I ask you to look at your reality and see whether you have a place inside you that cares whether you have a place inside you that sees that you wanna move in a direction of all people being treated more equally. And don’t discount yourself because it’s only small steps. Do you see the capacity to trust that your small steps matter? I thank you for your attention.
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