I’ve been spending the last few days putting together a project site for The Turning, which is now open and ready for use… you can visit it here: http://theturning.onehumanbeing.com/ (site no longer available)
On the new site you’ll find the story has been organized to make it easier to follow.
I have also moved STEW, an allegorical story about the 2008 election, over to The Turning site, where these two story will soon be merged into one…
What Is The Turning?
This is serial – a story that will unfold over a seven year period of time – which tells the story of a mythical and imaginative journey taken by Jon, onehumanbeing that blends fiction and non-fiction as it explores ideas about time, being human, bipolar disorder, god(s), creation, history, Mayan calenders, astrology, space, the sub-conscious mind, quantum physics, American Christianity and the coming Long Cycle – among other things.
But most of the time this story is more about the questions it stirs up in you than anything else…
As an artist I’m always at work on more than one thing at a time. For example, when I’m painting I usually have about 5 paintings going at once – all in various stages of completion.
Currently, much of my work is done on very large scales. As an example – The MMJ Project, which uses my local city and community as the studio and working space for my various activities involving Medical Marijuana and the long struggle to get it established and normalized.
To keep my various projects, and the different materials, concepts, and campaigns from getting lost in a confusing mass of stuff, I started to start creating “project sites” for each project idea – sort of like spin-offs from TV shows – and this gives each project it’s own home.
By using this “multiple project sites” approach, I find as my focus shifts over time I can move from one project site to the next, adding new material, making changes, adjusting the project to keep it on track, and whatever else needs to be done at that time.
Then, after a while, a shift or a change comes over me and I’m onto the next project – and around and around it goes…
I hope that helps you understand the process going on here at onehumanbeing.com
It’s been nearly ten months since the election of Barack Obama in November of 2008. At the time of the election I was writing a series of pieces comparing the election to the story of the twin brothers, Jacob and Esau, in the Hebrew and Christian Bibles – I called this series STEW.
Like most everyone else who voted for Obama, I was in a state of amazement as I watched his acceptance speech on the night of the election (you can read about my reaction in my STEW election-break posting called “STEW: Part Three – Welcome to the WE generation” ) and ended up pausing the series while I worked on other things.
After a long break, we continue the story…
The story of these two brothers begins in The Book of Genesis, chapter 25, and today we pick up the story in verse 25 and continues until verse 34…
The Twins – Jacob and Esau
The Book of Genesis tells us about the Patriarchs of the Hebrews – the first three males of a divinely chosen people and a line of blessing that will culminate in God’s Eternal Kingdom with His Messiah on the Eternal Throne – and it starts with three generations of one human family; beginning with Abraham – the Father of Faith, his son, Isaac – The Child of Promise and then Jacob, who became Israel, the Father of the Twelve Tribes.
Now Jacob, the third of The Patriarchs, was born with a twin named Esau. [You can find the story in Genesis 25:21-28] and they wrestled violently in the womb causing their mother, Rebekah (played by Madonna in a previous episode) great distress and pain during her pregnancy.
When she inquired of The Lord why her pregnancy was going so bad The Lord told her:
“Two nations are in your womb;
And two people shall be separated from your body;
And one people shall be stronger than the other;
And the older shall serve the younger.”
When she gave birth, indeed she had twins – the first child to be born was Esau, who was already covered with red hair, followed by Jacob, holding onto the heel of his twin Esau.
It’s important to note that there is a tradition that believes that Esau was so restless in the womb that he was literally trying to fight his way out of Rebekah and if Jacob hadn’t held him back Esau would have killed his mother in an effort to be born early, and that is why the struggle in the womb and why Esau came out first with Jacob holding his heel.
This tradition could also explain why Jacob was his mother’s favorite son.
Esau grew up to be a hunter and outdoors-man, was a very hairy man and dreamed of moving to Alaska; while Jacob grew up a peaceful, smooth-skinned man and dreamed of going to Washington DC.
Now, in those days and according to their customs, the first-born male got the entire inheritance – everything – land, animals, money, servants… and in this family it also came with the Divine Blessing that Abraham had first received for El Shaddai, The Almighty God. In this case, that meant that Esau, by birthright, was entitled to the complete inheritance when Isaac died.
Jacob understood this very well, and Esau really couldn’t care less…
One day Esau (played by John McCain, poor, sold-out John McCain) came back from hunting and smelled something delicious cooking. Following his nose he found his brother Jacob cooking a pot of red lentil stew. “I’m starving, let me have a swallow of that red stuff…” he told his brother, and Jacob, not being in a giving mood, said, “Sell me your birthright first.”
Esau, letting his appetite overcome his good sense, figures that a birthright is worthless to a dead man, and agrees.
After making Esau swear an oath, Jacob served him some stew and bread, which Esau ate quickly and then went on his way.
Little did Esau know that El Shaddai, who watches over everyone, saw what Esau had done and heard the oath Esau made, and knew that Esau despised his birthright, and had also despised The Almighty God.
I’ve been very busy over the last few weeks working on a project called “The Book of Days”; a multi-year work that involves various calendars, numerous subjects (like Mayan time, circular rhythms, astronomy, myths, religions, the story of creation, God, gods and other spiritual beings, Abraham, Issac, Jacob, Esau, the next 26,000 years, the world tree, and (this is the short list) one of the main characters – Ophiuchus… it’s a big project and it’s getting closer to launch every day…
Subscribe to my newsletter (see side bar on right) and I’ll update you as soon as the new blog site for The Book of Days is launched.
I did a number of drawings earlier this month while I was preparing my materials for this project… here’s the whole collection that I posted along with a few extras… enjoy and have a great Christmas.
Here’s a drawing I did Friday – the subject of this one is the story of Esau and Jacob, Twins, Gemini, more about the World Tree (that’s a Mayan story), and a bunch of other little details… like that worm at the bottom – that’s Laban, Jacob’s father-in-law (Gen. 29).
My thoughts are often revolving around Mayan beliefs, the books of the prophets in the Old Testament of the Bible, the Gospels and Revelation from the New Testament, Greek Mythology, Astronomy, Quantum Physics, genetics, symbols and Jungian psychology, and some other things… all of which are finding their way into these drawings…
It is late in the evening of November 5, 2008 and I am amazed at what I’m watching, feeling and seeing coming to pass… it’s like watching as the world begin to turn, but it only seems that way because of the long night and the early fingers of light that are just beginning to shoot across the horizon.
Today I thought back about 6 or so years ago when I worked at the Gazette Newspapers in Long Beach, and we had an office manager named Kenya.
Kenya has a white father and black mother, kind-of-like Barack, and we would talk about the black/white thing once in a while.
One morning when I was talking to her about this issue I said, “You know Kenya, the world is upside down…The last shall be first, and a change will come…”
Why do I believe this?
Because I am a child of 1964, and after 1964, everything changed… I grew up believing Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech.
Because both of my parents were from Springfield, Illinois, and Lincoln has been a hero of my since childhood.
He had a dream, and Martin had a dream, and they became my dream, and on January 20, 2009 the two come together in what WE have chosen to dream together – Change we can believe in…
In the night, unless you are awake and watching the sky, the light goes out and artificial light takes over until we sleep and dream. Everything looks different in artificial light. We hide from monsters, and jump when the wind blows against the house…
We have tried to comfort ourselves from the fear with myths and legends to protect us while we sleep, looking for clues that when morning comes everything will be alright, that our flag will still wave.
Welcome to dawns early light…
Tell me, can you see?
The flag does still wave and the blessing goes on. The new day does come and the torch of the night is passed, because we have one more night still to travel through, but that’s when a ladder comes down from heaven, and the glory of El-Shaddai will fill the Earth…
But before then, the light of day is about to burst around you, and what looked so strange in the night will look very different in the light of day.
That all aside, I can not tell you how much I am crying inside for the children of Esau…
Welcome to Part Two of an election time allegorical story called STEW, or, How Esau Lost The 2008 Election.
And now for something completely different…
Today we have a semi-epic Biblical drama, Journey to Mesopotamia, to add more ingredients to this stew, and to help us understand the background of our story…
I imagined this drama in what I call “Star-Wars-o-Vision”, an epic and lush George Lucas-esque styling – available in wide screen HD for those of you with a great visual imagination.
Keep in mind all the allegorical imagery from Part One as we move ahead… all the pieces will add up as the story moves along.
Plagiarism Disclaimer: The following story is mostly lifted from Genesis 24:13-67 using the American Standard Version, the New American Standard Version and a few modifications of my own…
A Note on Hebrew Names for God:
Elohim is a Hebrew word for God which means: gods in the ordinary sense; but specifically used (in the plural) of the supreme God.
Jehovah is another of the Hebrew word for God which means: self existent or eternal; Jehovah, Jewish national name of God as in, Jehovah, the Lord.
Source – Strong‘s Hebrew and Greek Dictionary.
Journey to Mesopotamia
Scene I: The Oath
Setting: Widescreen view out over a vast desert landscape, bleak, but colorized a bit with some deeper colors to give it the “settling in to an epic story” feel. As the camera scans the desert a great settlement of tents, people and herds comes into view in the valley below… the camera shifts to inside of Abraham’s tent, decorated in early “Raiders of the Lost Ark” style…
Casting notes: Abraham is play by Jack Nicholson in this scene and his servant is played by Morgan Freeman, who is also the narrator, like in “The Shawshank Redemption“…
Abraham’s Servant: Our story begins after Abraham has mourned the death of his beloved wife Sarah…
In that day Abraham was old and advanced in age, and Jehovah had blessed Abraham in every way, but he could see his son Isaac was still heartsick because of his mother’s death.
One day Abraham called me into his tent, because I was his oldest and most trusted servant, and he made me swear an oath
Abraham: I will make you swear by El-Shaddai, the Elohim of heaven and the Elohim of earth, that you shall not take a wife for my son from the Daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live, but you shall go to my country and to my relatives and take a wife for my son Isaac.
Abraham’s Servant: Suppose the woman will not be willing to follow me to this land; should I take your son back to the land where you came from?
Abraham [exploding]: Beware lest you take my son back there! El Shaddai, the Elohim of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and the land of my birth, and who spoke to me, and who swore to me, saying ‘To your descendants I will give this land,’ He will send His angel before you, and you will take a wife for my son from there.
But if the woman is not willing to follow you, then you will be free from this my oath; only do not take my son back there.
Abraham’s Servant: So I made an oath with Abraham concerning this matter. He gave me ten camels loaded with a variety of good things and special gifts he gave into my hand, and I left for Mesopotamia, to the city of Nahor, the snoring father of civilization, back to the land that my master Abraham had left so long ago.
Scene II: The Well at Nahor
Setting: another view out over a vast desert landscape… the camera moves towards the caravan of ten camels that is coming to a stop at a desert well of water, it is late afternoon…
Abraham’s Servant: When I approached the city of Nahor, and came to the well where the women came to draw the evening water, I made the camels knee down and I dismounted.
I looked around me and made a request to the Jehovah, the Elohim of my master, Abraham.
O Jehovah, the Elohim of my master Abraham, send me, I pray thee, success this day, and show kindness unto my master Abraham.Behold, I am standing by the fountain of water.
The daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water, so let it come to pass, that the girl to whom I shall say, ‘Let down thy pitcher, please, that I may drink.’
And she shall say, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels also.’
May she be the one whom thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac. And thereby shall I know that thou hast showed kindness unto my master.
Abraham’s Servant continues: While I was still addressing Jehovah I saw coming towards me a beautiful maiden who I later found out was Rebekah who was born to Bethuel the son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her jar upon her shoulder.
Note on Rebekah’s name: could be translated from the Hebrew as “The clog, the fettering beauty born to the son who was destroyed by God, born of the queen to the snoring brother of Abraham” or something like that…see Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionary.
Abraham’s Servant continues: This girl was very beautiful to look at, a virgin, who had not yet been touched for the very first time. She went down to the fountain, and filled her jar, and came up again…
Abraham’s Servant [running to meet Rebekah]:Give me to drink, please, a little water from your jar.
Rebekah [lowering her jar to her hand, and giving Abraham’s servant a drink]: Drink.
Rebekah [after Abraham’s servant finishes drinking]: I will draw water for your camels also, until they have finished drinking.
[Rebekah quickly emptied her pitcher into the watering trough, and runs back the well to draw more water, and continued until all the camels had been satisfied.]
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: All the while I watched her, holding my peace, to know whether Jehovah had made my journey successful or not…
When the camels had finished drinking, I knew in my heart she was the one so I gave her a golden ring for her nose, and ten bracelets for her hands.
Abraham’s Servant [speaking to Rebekah]: Whose daughter are you and is there room in your father’s house for myself, my camels and my men to spend the night?
Rebekah: I am the daughter of Bethuel, the son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor. We have both straw and feed for your camels, and plenty of room for your men.
Abraham’s Servant [bowing his head – praying]: Blessed be Jehovah, the Elohim of my master Abraham, who has not forsaken his loving-kindness and his truth toward my master. As for me, Jehovah has led me in the way to the house of my master’s brothers.
Scene III: Mesopotamian Material Girl
Setting: Large settlement with many people carrying on with the daily activities of Mesopotamian people about 3,500 years ago… the camera follows Abraham’s servant (Morgan Freeman) and Rebekah (early Madonna, “Like A Virgin” era) from the well to the house of Laban, the Mesopotamian – Rebekah’s brother (played by Rupert Murdoch in this scene)
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: I waited as Rebekah ran off to tell her mother’s household.
Now Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban. Soon I saw Laban hurrying out to meet me by the well, because he had seen the gifts I had given Rebekah and had heard her story.
Laban: Don’t just stand there, come blessed of Jehovah… I have prepared the house, and room for the camels.
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: So I went with Laban to his house where he unloaded the camels, gave them straw and feed and provided water to wash my feet and the feet of the men that were with me.
After this food was set before us to to eat…
Abraham’s Servant [speaking to Laban]: I will not eat, until I have told my business.
Abraham’s Servant: I am Abraham’s servant, and Jehovah has blessed my master greatly. He has become great and Jehovah has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, many servant, and camels and asses.
Now Sarah, my master’s wife, has bore a son to my master in her old-age, and my master has given his son all he has.
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: I continued to tell him about my oath to Abraham, my request to Jehovah and my meeting with Rebekah by the well…
Abraham’s Servant [continuing to speak to Laban]: If you will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me so. And if not, let me know, so that I may turn to the right hand, or to the left.
Laban (with Bethuel at his side): The matter comes from Jehovah, and is not ours to decide whether this is good or bad.
Behold, Rebekah is before you, take her, and go, and let her be your master’s son’s wife, as Jehovah has spoken.
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: And it came to pass, that, when I heard their words, I bowed down to the earth and worshiped Jehovah.
After this I brought out jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and garments, and gave them to Rebekah. I also gave to her brother and to her mother precious things. Then we ate and drank until the morning.
Scene IV: Blessing Our Sister Rebekah
Setting: Same as Scene III, only now it’s the morning after…
Abraham’s Servant [speaking to Laban]: Send me away to my master.
Laban: Let the girl stay with us a few days, at the least ten. After that she can go…
Abraham’s Servant: Do not delay me, seeing Jehovah has prospered my way. Send me away that I may go to my master.
Laban: We will call the girl, and ask her.
[Rebekah enters the room]
Laban [speaking to Rebekah]: Will you go with this man?
Rebekah: I will go.
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: And so they sent back to my master Abraham with Rebekah, their sister, with this blessing:
The Voices of Rebekah’s Kin [5 to 6 voices all speaking together]: May you, our sister, become the mother of thousands of ten thousands, and may your descendants possess the gate of those that hate them.
Scene V: Back To Canaan
Setting: another view out over a vast desert landscape… the camera moves towards a caravan of many camels, it is late afternoon…
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: Rebekah arose, along with her maids, and they rode upon their camels, following me as I returned to my master Abraham and his son, Isaac.
Isaac lived in the Negev, or the south, along the way of Beer-lahai-roi (which means: the well of a living seer).
While Isaac was meditating in the field one evening. And he lifted up his eyes and saw, and, behold, there were camels coming.
Meanwhile, Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she dismounted from the camel.
Rebekah [speaking to Abraham’s servant]: What man is this that walk in the field to meet us?
Abraham’s Servant: It is my master.
[Rebekah takes her veil, and covers herself. Isaac enters the scene]
Abraham’s Servant [narrating]: When Issac met us, I told him all the things that I had done.
After this, Isaac brought Rebekah into his mother Sarah’s tent, and she became his wife and he loved her.
With this, Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
End: Credits Start To Roll…
I hope you enjoyed my Bible story for today… I’ll have Professor Yarnhead here later to help explain some of the allegorical clues from this story.
Note: I was up late on the Monday writing and rewriting and rewriting this piece. I think I caught all my typos… let me know if you find anything I missed.
The Twins Story (the birth of Esau and Jacob) has been rescheduled for Tuesday, Election Day…
Also coming up on the 4th… Greed Stew for Esau and Blind Stew for Isaac.
I am going to try and share a story I haven’t entirely figured out how to piece together yet, but will play out over the next few days…
I’ve watched it over and over in my head this last week… little pieces, little scenes, the same story, different play, same subject, different players….
It’s as if I’ve been watching T.V. – switching from channel to channel, but even as the program changes, the subject is always the same. Esau and Jacob, the 2008 Presidential race and the future…
It’s a story that moves and changes like a dream; like an episode of Monty Pythons Flying Circus or a History Channel documentary, loosely spliced and wandering from free association to free association like a drunken bee in a flower garden.
STEW: This is a word with several meanings, from (1) cooking food by simmering or low boil to (2) fussing and fretting to (3) suffering the consequences of one’s own actions.
Beginning with the first meaning, let’s see how we go about making this particular stew.
The broth of this stew is “based on a true story” because I’ve lifted it completely from the story of Esau and Jacob in the Bible.
Notes for those following along at home:You can find this story in any standard issue Bible in the first book of the Old Testament, Genesis, ranging from chapters 24 through 27 with extra bonus reading about Esau in Hebrews, chapter 12. Hebrews is one of the books of the New Testament, near the back of the Bible.
More on the broth in a moment, but first…
The STEW Who’s Who
The main ingredients of the story consists of four people…
Esau: The older twin, the big brother, hunter, “man of the fields”, and a rough, hairy man – he’s dad’s favorite. He’s the one who should inherit it all.
He symbolizes the Republicans, the Neocons, the sold-out conservatives hanging on because of sheer loyalty, and, most importantly, “The Religious Right” with a special bonus extra credit shout out to “right wing Christians”, and Christians that call themselves “value voters”…
Esau’s nickname is “Red” and is played by John “Red” McCain.
Jacob: The younger twin. Smooth skinned and a “tent-dweller.” He’s mother’s favorite, ambitious, knows what’s at stake and knows how to get it.
He symbolizes the Democrats, but also symbolizes the future transformation of the USA.
His nickname is “Smooth” and played by Barack “Smooth” Obama.
Isaac: The Second Patriarch in a blessed line of Patriarchs. The Son of Promise that is now an old man going blind and foreseeing his own demise.
He symbolizes the good old US of A. You and me, the vast historical, mythological, cosmic and collective expression of the several centuries of this country we call home.
His nickname is “The Gipper”, and is played by former President Ronald “The Gipper” Reagan in a stunning return from the dead for one last head-shaking performance.
Rebekah: Isaac’s wife. Beautiful, rich and manipulative. She’s the mother of Isaac’s twins, but she prefers Jacob, the younger one.
She symbolizes our Constitution, our Capitalist system and it’s expression through the media (the left-wing media if it makes you feel better) in all it’s glory.
Her nickname is the “Material Girl” and is played by the original Material Girl – Madonna.
God’s Broth – or – the Blessing
Because of the mystical and symbolic nature of the rest of this story, I’m going to have to call in Professor Yarnhead to give us an understanding of the ingredients that have gone into making this broth.
Professor Yarnhead is a self-proclaimed specialist in the field of interpretive Biblical prophecy – always a recession-proof industry.
He is going to try and take us back through the grains of the sands of time…
Visuals: Still images, old-fashioned illustrations and archival clip art floats across the screen here to invoke the feeling of history and antiquity – Otherwise known as “The History Channel Collage Style.”
Professor Yarnhead begins:
It was the time of the Patriarchs, a mysterious time when Man was socially evolving from tribes to nations.
El-Shaddai – also known as God Almighty, had called a descendant from the line of Shem, one of the three sons of Noah, to come out from his family, out from his tribe and lands… and out of this one man, He, El-Shaddai, God Almighty would prepare and bring about the next step for Man.
This man, Abram, followed this call from El-Shaddai and received “The Blessing.”
When Abram received this Blessing, El-Shaddai changed his name to Abraham, which means “Father of Nations” and from this first Patriarch all the nations of the world descended and were blessed.
This Blessing is something we don’t understand anymore, nor do we know the power of El-Shaddai as Abram did…
But this was an earlier time, before many of the mysteries were forgotten, when some people still understood that the Blessing is everything.
This Blessing is not a moral prize which is won by your own virtue. The Blessing of El-Shaddai is the Grand Prize of all the possible prizes in the world, and is a prize of faith.
El-Shaddai gave the Blessing to Abraham because he believed God, and so he also became the Patriarch of western religion and faith.
Abraham had two sons, Ishmael and Isaac.
Ishmael was born first, but from Abraham’s wife’s maid Hagar (they did that kind of stuff back then), because Abraham was having trouble waiting for God to get around to doing what he promised to do – give him a son.
Thirteen years later, Sarah, Abraham’s wife got pregnant, and had the Son of Promise – Isaac.
Note: Ishmael and the results of this situation launches a whole other subject that’s too big to go into here…
It was during a traumatic camping trip when Isaac was young that he nearly got sacrificed to El-Shaddai by his father, Abraham, only to be saved by the intervention of an angel from God that pointed out a ram caught in the nearby bushes.
They sacrificed the ram instead, and made some stew… and that stew stuck with Isaac.
Years later, when Isaac had grown, Abraham decided that his son needed a wife, but not one of the local Canaanite girls…
History Flash: Canaanite Women Bad: In the Noah blessing sweepstakes (Genesis 9:25-27), Canaan was the loser, Japheth comes in second and Shem grabs the big prize blessing.
So Abraham sent his most trusted servant back to the birthplace of civilization, Mesopotamia, to find a suitable wife for Isaac from among his relatives. [See Genesis 24]
Setting:Professor Yarnhead fades out…
Well, I think I’ll let this stew simmer overnight and add some more ingredients tomorrow, stir it some more…
Tune in tomorrow for Part 2: Journey to Mesopotamia, The Twins, and more…