Category Archives: Ecology

Environmental sustainability. Especially related to nuclear and plastic waste, as well as the food / farming problematic.

The Rhythm of the Dance of Life

How to Synchronize, Increase the Frequency, and Sustain the Rhythm of the Dance of Life

RHYTHM: DANCE OF LIFE (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 120 x 150 cm)

Humans like stability to feel safe, and they seek preservation of their identity, whether it be good or bad. In the short-term, though, people often also do not like repetition as it leads them to boredom. In a time paced rapidly by ever shorter business cycles, everything tends to become judged as boring by the declining attention span of the consumer mind. In contrast, as to the creating mind, education and professional practice training are considered successful if one has learned to tolerate the monotonous tasks of the streamlined information and production processes as input to the modern economic societies. That’s how many forgot the excitement of rhythm and surprising improvisations of a freely lived life.

Like evenly-timed rhythms such as four-quarter times are often interpreted through triple step dances (for example, two quick steps and one slow step), it is the shift from the balance of even patterns to the harmony of three that introduces a higher level of human experience. Having three entities combines both brevity and rhythm with having the smallest amount of information to create a pattern. To overcome the avoidance of change caused by the monotonous evenness of commercial mainstream and its resulting addiction to stability, we are well-advised to hear the rhythm of the dance of life in all three the past, the present, and the future.

Therefore, the three steps of the dance of life can be seen as follows:

•    Step 1: SYNCHRONIZING THE RHYTHM – Guidance by the past of universal unity

•    Step 2: INCREASING THE FREQUENCY OF THE RHYTHM – Attendance to the present without fear

•    Step 3: SUSTAINING THE RHYTHM – Abundance through service to the future of all

Step 1: SYNCHRONIZATION OF THE RHYTHM – Guided by the past of universal unity

Most people are not able to not have to belong, respectively are not able to belong to everybody, so they will belong to certain/specific groups. Group thinking often inhibits critical thinking. However, experiences of togetherness also reveal the motives for unity that involve rhythmic, synchronous movements like marching and dancing. To march or dance together to the same rhythm creates intense feelings of unity and fosters a willingness to sacrifice one’s life for one’s mates. Again, this bears risks and opportunities: Applied to an exclusive group, this is the essence of the birth of radical ideologies and religions; However, when extended to all of humanity, true spirituality opens up.

Step 2: INCREASING THE FREQUENCY OF THE RHYTHM – Attending to the present without fear

The ego always fears to lose, why others are seen as threats. This attention to the fear of loss eventually is missing for the attendance of inspiration and love. Because of the fear of losing one’s identity, change becomes the ultimate threat. However, on the dance floor of life, many people dance, and the music will change all the time. So, we should not get angry and fearful when the rhythm is changing again. However, we also shouldn’t necessarily let the music played by others let us dictate our pace. It’s best to choose the music that reflects our natural rhythm so that we can pace ourselves in our journeys of personal development. It’s exciting to meet new people. Meeting strangers creates high levels of synchronized rhythmic activities in the brain. Therefore, let’s enjoy social arousal from novel encounters; the more exciting and less frightening they are perceived, the higher is the frequency of the neuronal dance in your brain.

Step 3: SUSTAINING THE RHYTHM – Abundance through service to the future of all

The commitment to live life in a sustainable rhythm, without greed, without unnecessary selfishness, helps to avoid depressive thoughts of loss, burnout, despair, and getting stiff in the ability to dance smoothly. If we change the rhythm from an attitude of “getting what’s in for us” to one which services the others, it’s possible to create a different cadence in life, a rhythm of an all-new quality. We think our life with birth and death is different than anything else as we consider it not to follow a recurring rhythm. That’s why we mistakenly don’t dance through life. On the other hand, we run as straight and fast as possible in one direction, completely denying the possibility that there is no other place than the here and now to go. Shouldn’t we joyfully embrace life as an endless and abundant dance of collective consciousness to which we can contribute as an equal part (not as less nor as more)?

In that sense, let’s overcome avoidance and become guided and attentive dancers for abundance. To live from unity, in love, and for service to all is the ability to synchronize the rhythm and dance the dance of life. This was, once again, another analogy for describing the socio-temporal rhythmic system of the universe on which Awareness Intelligence (see www.mathias-sager.com) is based.

#Kunst #Künstler #art #artist #painting #malen #Gemälde #contemporaryart #abstract #Zeitgenössischekunst #abstrakt #Rhythmus #rhythm #dance #Tanz #life #Leben #psychology #Psychologie #philosophy #awarenessintelligence #Bewusstseinsintelligenz

SOULFIRE’S FLAMES

SOULFIRE’S FLAMES (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 100 x 120 cm)

SOULFIRE’S FLAMES (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 100 x 120 cm)

Consciousness and awareness

In English, there is a differentiation between consciousness and (self-)awareness. Consciousness commonly means the ability to perceive one’s body and environment. Awareness, on the other hand, is the recognition of that consciousness, which includes the understanding of one’s ability to self-reflect on one’s existence.

Thinking, thinking about thinking (self-reflection), emotions caused by thinking, and the control of emotions through self-reflection

THE ANALOGY OF THE FIRE OF CONSCIOUSNESS

Consciousness is the source of our soul’s fire, and awareness is its fuel. Firing energy as the fundamental element of consciousness is the nature of life itself; it exists everywhere and in all of us. It just has to be inflamed. The body does not produce consciousness. Awareness, however, is bound to our existence here on earth. Awareness-generated thoughts are the heat and light of the soulfire’s flames.

Flames of poisonous thoughts come from the impure fuel of ignorance. We cannot stop the inflammatory nature of our consciousness, nor is it desirable. What matters, however, is what fuel is burned, whether it is intelligent reflective consciousness or not; Perceptual awareness alone, however highly praised meditation, is not intelligent, but reactive and detached from the whole.

The quality of thinking is determined by the level of reflective awareness from which it arises. Thus, our thoughts and the resulting feelings are in our control. Through the right self-reflection and appropriate conclusions, the perceptual consciousness and corresponding thoughts can be kept pure as meant by nature itself. In this sense, consciousness directly affects our cognitive abilities and, whenever we think, our state of mind, as well as the emotions that follow the quality of thinking. We can also think of emotions as the smoke created by the flames of poisonous thoughts. Impure thoughts generate uncomfortable emotions, such as dark smoke produced by heavy fuel with, for example, a high degree of moisture, while positive and bright emotions arise from thoughts of awareness-intelligent purity and composition.

Our thinking does not have to be emotionally controlled and potentially confusing, as the flames of thought are not defined by the smoke of emotions, but are generated by a holistic, healthy, and sacred reflective awareness, which emulates universal intelligence and therefore can be called Awareness Intelligence.

As always, for definitions and further articles related to Awareness Intelligence (Bewusstseinsintelligenz in German), please see https://mathias-sager.com/tag/awareness-intelligence/

#art #artist #painting #abstract #contemporaryart #modernabstract #psychology #philosophy #consciousness #awareness #fire #awarenessintelligence

A Universalist’s Perspective

UNIVERSALIST PERSPECTIVE (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 60 x 80 cm)

Tunnel view on life

Single-mindedness is praised and rewarded everywhere in science as well as in business and private matters. If integrating more aspects of life into one’s lifestyle, one is considered unfocused and not knowing what he/she wants. People typically educate and develop in clearly predefined, straight career paths, and socially common and therefore accepted ways in which people all too often assume a tunnel view on life so they can be put into one-themed, clearly labeled boxes.

The Last Universalist

As French Henri Poincare described so well “Science is built up of facts, as a house is built of stones; but an accumulation of facts is no more a science than a heap of stones is a house.” In the context of understanding life and its signification for human existence overall, some dots undoubtedly remain unconnected. Henri Poincare who died in 1912, is considered the ‘The Last Universalist’ in mathematics since he mastered all the disciplines at once. If today’s specialized scientific fields work in silos and are hindering inter-disciplinary cooperation, it might indeed be the case that a lot of knowledge is not brought into a more meaningful context and does not result into a house of wisdom that benefits and protects all humanity in a broader sense.

Missing systematic management of the mind

Project and productivity management skills to organize business processes are taught everywhere and on all levels of the education system. Surprisingly, the same diligence is not applied to the mental world. How can we think about our thinking and improve it for our own and others’ well-being? How can we critically check our awareness to make sure we don’t miss any essential aspects? The answers to these questions determine how we care for the world, and yet they are not discussed systematically enough in school. To quote the Buddha, “All that we are is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think we become.” I think it is overdue to build wholesome human attitudes, which is to think more and in different ways about how we develop and use awareness.

The benefit of mental triathlons

Awareness Intelligence is like a mental triathlon, or a triptych in art. It is not just one focus of mind, but a threefold set of socio-temporal perspectives that form a person’s worldview (for more on socio-temporal mental schemas see the Awareness Intelligence literature on https://mathias-sager.com/tag/awareness-intelligence/). It is to be hoped that one-sided extremism evolves into inherently diverse lifestyles. We need monks who are not only wise, but fit and socially engaging. We need physically fit intellectuals who care, and intellectual and kind sportspersons. We need leaders who serve on the ground of honest servant leadership style based on what’s healthy for human beings. And, we need real, fair competition that rewards not only the smart, but especially the kind.

Horizontal integration for more relevance

For a more harmonious and wholesome lifestyle it is to hope that personality is understood to not only develop vertically (i.e., into a specialization in one field), but horizontally (i.e., integrating multiple fields) to become aware of broader contexts, interdependencies, and connections across everything and all that is relevant.

TOWARDS A BROADER AWARENESS (Introduction to a tool of self-reflection)

Missing global awareness

Looking at people’s stress and anguish, the conflict between societies and how the environment gets maltreated, it seems that the human ability of mentally embracing, being aware of a global collective as a species did not keep pace with the globalization of the world. Is there a lack of a kind of mentality (respectively, awareness) in the sense of how populations connect themselves to a broader context like all humanity?

Transcending the narrow world of the ego

It appears challenging to bridge between individual and collective levels of reasoning. However, the feeling of interconnectedness is essential in contributing to health and well-being. Indeed, research findings suggest that psychological well-being is dependent upon one’s connection to a broader, even widely anonymous social scope that comes with a sense of meaning in life. Carl Jung spoke about different parts of the self that transcend the ‘ego’ self and that these need to be integrated to complete a harmonious inner self. The power of imagination can overcome an inflexible ego-centered mind. Imagination is also required to imagine future events, which constitutes (besides recalling matters of the past) a part of the ability to mentally ‘travel in time’. If people don’t imagine the future, their sense of self, and the perceived agency diminishes.

The social and temporal dimensions of awareness

Moreover, it is a person’s relation to the social world and time that can determine his or her meaning-making. In other words, it is a core construct of beliefs in these dimensions that forms a so-called ‘worldview’. ‘Sensemaking on a worldview level’ and ‘mental schemas’ are appropriate related terms at the cognitive level to determine what one is aware of. Hence, awareness seems to be linked to such mental schemas as they help to understand how people self-reflect on their socio-temporal worldviews.

Reflecting on one’s worldview

Worldviews are arrangements of beliefs used to create meaning of one’s experience of reality. From a cognitive perspective, worldviews involve ‘thinking systems’ including intricate patterns of thoughts and beliefs that integrate as an interactive whole. Beliefs are mental constellations that stand for relationships between categories, which determine how one experiences (i.e., is aware of) the world. For example, social worldview schemas would represent an individual’s beliefs about the social world. To mentally build a worldview, the abilities to learn and imagine, all of which require reflection, are essential. And humans do reflect on the continuum of time, a mental process that involves thinking about the past, present, and future.

Meaning-making through awareness about one’s socio-temporal scope of thinking

Accordingly, what results from combining thinking about social relations and time, is a socio-temporal matrix (see Figure 1) that can be used a framework to identify and visualize worldviews, and that can facilitate the exploration of psychological effects related to a person’s meaning-making and well-being based on their socio-temporal scope of awareness.


Figure 1. The socio-temporal matrix of worldview schemas

Socio-temporal worldview schemas

The nine fields of the matrix can be used to inquire about socio-temporal mental schemas, which means the scope and configuration of a person’s awareness. An individual’s worldview schema is expected to consist of a specific set of matrix fields, depending on whether one’s belief system emphasizes certain socio-temporal mental states over others. For example, one may emphasize other-related extra-past (e.g., socio-cultural upbringing), behave in an inter-present, rather relationship-dominated way, while focusing, however, on a self-oriented intra-future. Such a socio-temporal mental worldview schema might link to specific meanings as, for example, a more independent (i.e., denoted by the intra-past instead of an inter- or extra-past) and other-oriented (i.e., depicted as the extra-future rather than an inter- or intra-future) cognitive socio-temporal worldview preference.

A tool for self-reflection

In that sense, the socio-temporal matrix provides for a tool, respectively a mental map to support the navigation of socio-temporal worldviews, which, again, represents the scope and configuration of one’s awareness. The matrix has proven to be useful for self-reflection and fostering awareness about oneself and others.

You can use a free online version of the tool at https://mathias-sager.com/the-novel-self-reflection-tool-online/

Three-way matches for better decision making

20210322_painting_TIPTYCH 123 3_acrylic on canvas_30 x 30_mathias sager_3
THREE-WAY MATCH (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 3 times 30 x 30 cm)

If you want to increase reliability in decision-making, you need three fixation points, respectively three sources, for a three-way match. If for a point to be confirmed, you can’t find two other reference points, verification is weak. Think about a tripod and how its three legs need to interact simultaneously to provide a stable stand. Only by such a well-established awareness, more significant logical arcs of higher importance and sharper thought can be captured. Whether you want to achieve better thought-through results or to relax mental tension, think thrice, the same way as you take three deep breaths as a physical exercise. Don’t judge too early; only cross the street of thought after applying a ‘watch-listen-walk’ attitude in your decision-making.  For your own and all others’ safety, watch (1) your intrapersonal self, (2) the interpersonal others, and (3) the extrapersonal all, as well as (1) the past, (2) the present, and (3) the future. Awareness Intelligence comes in through the combination of (1) watching the intra-past, (2) listen to the inter-present, and (3) walk the extra-future.

#art #artist #painting #painter #modernabstract #contemporaryart #acrylic #psychic #blindness #awareness #decision #decisionmaking #triptych #thinking #psychology #philosophy #mind #bewusstseinsintelligenz #awarenessintelligence

The Knotgoblin

20210313_painting_The KNOT GOBLIN_acrylic on canvas 50 x 50 cm
THE KNOTGOBLIN (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 50 x 50 cm)

The KNOTGOBLIN (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 50 x 50 cm)

Consistent thinking is the knotgoblin that is strangling our Self. That’s how I’d interpret the deeper meaning of the saying ‘Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds’ by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

First, not changing one’s mind testifies the absence of learning, the addiction to the ever-same thoughts, respectively the missing implementation of lessons learned. Second, if the mind is consumed with matters of consistency (i.e., the texture of material things), there is no space for the world of consciousness that is the seat of the soul.

We all have experienced the feeling of the depressing weight of a knot in our hearts we wish to untie. When the knot gets too tight, we even want to cut the rope. Actually, that’s precisely what needs to be done to remove what makes us feel stuck, stiff, and ugly. If we declutter our minds from stuff, we become free to reach out, love, see the bigger picture, and thrive intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. Declutter from consistency, unravel tribulations, detach from dependencies, and the rope will flatten and relax. That’s how the space arises in which we grow.

Do you know your knotgoblin? How’s it holding you knotted? Have you ever tried to untie it?

#art #artist #painting #painter #modernabstract #contemporaryart #psychology #philosophy #consistency #depression #mind #soul #bewusstseinsintelligenz #awarenessintelligence

Arms of Awareness

ARMS OF AWARENESS (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 120 x 80 cm)

ARMS OF AWARENESS (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 120 x 80 cm)

The observation of the environment helps to see the light as all material objects reflect light. Light is everywhere, including in all of us, and time does not let it fade. That’s how reflections become perennial. There is still the reflection of our ancestors in the light, the same light that will transport our visual and energetic appearance forever. That’s how, whether present, future, or past, consequently, everything exists in light in parallel. Besides such a notion of cosmic time, I agree that in everyday life the concept of a timeline is practical. However, such a linear conceptualization of time represents a serious impediment. Maximal temporal awareness bends the imaginary timeline into a circle in which the past and the future, both infinitely stretching into eternity, meet. If you can stretch your linear image of your lifetime between birth and death into this cyclical form beyond our physical existence, you have achieved a similar quantum leap to the one we’ve accomplished when accepting that the physical world is round rather than a finite plate with dubiously ending edges. Don’t fear thinking into the seemingly impossible and become of the infinite, spherical, and parallel nature of time. Don’t stressfully define your mind, stretch it. The farther apart you can stretch, the broader your arms of awareness. That’s how we can embrace the whole universe.

Excerpt from Awareness Intelligence (M. Sager, 2018)

#art #artist #painting #abstract #figurative #acrylic #abstractfigurative #abstractart #contemporaryart #modernart #philosophy #psychology #awareness #consciousness #time #light #bewusstseinsintelligenz #awarenessintelligenceMathias Sager

Awareness Intelligence research and application since 1975. It’s humantime. www.mathias-sager.comgoodthings@mathias-sager.com. Thanks and all the best!

The 3 types of Psychic Blindness, which prevent Awareness Intelligence

PSYCHIC BLINDNESS (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 100 x 100 cm)

Mindfulness is a buzzword used all over. But still, few seem to understand what exactly the mind should be full of. Most people do not systematically think about their thinking; they do not reflect on their scope of awareness. Psychic blindness appears to be a common issue and, therefore, hinders natural fitness, unconditional kindness, and spiritual wisdom.

“The eyes are useless when the mind is blind.” – Unknown.

The eyes are not speaking to the mind and soul directly. Any external stimulation first always goes through a layer of receptiveness and awareness that is filtering and transforming signals into emotions and thoughts. It’s this layer of the mind that determines what we are aware of and, consequently, how wholly and wholesomely we experience the world. This mental capacity, though, has been neglected severely, why also the concept of Awareness Intelligence (AWI) was discovered only recently.

I’ve written a lot about Awareness Intelligence, what it means, and how it develops. In terms of psychic blindness, it implies the presence of blind spots that typically prevent an awareness-intelligent set of mind. The three psychic blind spots, how they shape our identity/worldview, and what can be done about them are as follows.

#1 – Your intrapersonal past for FITNESS

Blindness:

You don’t see your true nature due to social conditioning, cultural education, and ethnic identification.

Awareness-intelligent view:

Let go of your history; it’s random and imposed on you because of others wanting to preserve the status quo and their privileges. You, as a human being, are not defined by external societal rules, status, race, and type, and level of schooling. You are a human being that, like all others, can find all of life’s intelligence within your nature, in which the full human potential is contained. Only you can know what is in you. So, reach out to your real, authentic self from before you were born. You are life and its natural strength and fitness; unfold accordingly free.

#2 – Your interpersonal present for KINDNESS

Blindness:

You don’t see yourself and the persons you interact with as they are at the moment because you define people based on their performance cards of the past and their social perspectives.

Awareness-intelligent view:

Do not judge and do not expect. The past is a matter of interpretation, and the future has yet to be defined. Both the past and the future are beyond our direct control, so don’t let your interpersonal presence be influenced by such conditions. The kindness in relationships can only be enjoyed in the present, and you too deserve to be loved unconditionally.

#3 – Your extrapersonal future for WISDOM

Blindness:

You don’t see that there’s nothing to worry about in the future. Let go of ego-driven dominance of safety-related desires.

Awareness-intelligent view:

Only if you learn to detach, you overcome the fear of loss that is the cause of any depression. You are not a human being having a spiritual experience; you are an eternal spiritual being having a temporary human experience. If you serve this infinite force of life unselfishly, you can experience the most-satisfactory joy of service. The future belongs to the next generation that is life’s yearning for itself. Be part of it by serving it. Wisdom ensues when you can shift your purpose from hedonic happiness to a more profound, respectively broader meaning.

You don’t see that there’s nothing to worry about in the future. Let go of the ego-driven dominance of security-related desires. Only when you learn to detach, you overcome the fear of loss, which is the cause of any depression. You are not a person who experiences a spiritual experience; you are an eternal spiritual being experiencing a spiritual human experience. When you serve this infinite power of life unselfishly, you can experience the most satisfying joy of such services. The future belongs to the next generation, which represents the longing of life for itself. Be a part of it by serving it. Wisdom follows when you can shift your purpose of life from hedonistic happiness to a deeper and broader meaning.

“We must put our mind on this as we do put a man on the moon.” – Jacque Fresco

It’s not that complicated to understand this socio-temporal structure of the mind. Yet, it can only be changed by challenging one’s own identity/worldview. However, most people instead prefer to live in blindness than to have to change. Sadly, remaining in that comfort zone causes the above-described limitations and suffering, for which, when becoming too big, our society offers pill subscriptions to fight the symptoms (instead of the cause) and further fog and blind the mind, so one perpetually remains oblivious to the need to change. After all the technological progress and artificial intelligence that eventually benefits more economic aspirations than heart needs, it is time for increasing our Awareness Intelligence. What an exciting opportunity for our generation to evolve to a more awareness-intelligent way of thinking and life that is so vital for any endeavor of human learning and behavior to become fitter, kinder, and wiser for individuals’ benefit and the collective alike.

#art #artist #painting #painter #modernabstract #contemporaryart #acrylic #psychic #blindness #awareness #seeing #psychology #philosophy #mind #soul #bewusstseinsintelligenz #awarenessintelligence

Return to roundness

RETURN TO ROUNDNESS (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 150 x 120 cm)

As energy works in waves, life operates in the softness and roundness of circles and cycles. The earth rotates around the sun, we sleep and wake in rhythmic sequels, like the circle of birth and death. What a contrast we create between the spherical, freely flowing world of life energy and the squared and edged compositions of the frightened human mind seeking physical protection. Instead of predominantly angular, cubic, boxed, parceled, square, and sharp constructions, round forms around us would remind us more accurately about the real, non-threatening nature of life. What is in form and still has edges, gets rounded up and polished by life’s allies, such as wind and water, until the shape is smoothened and eventually dissolved at all. And so does the human body’s contours that become softer as it ages. Indeed, all form is coming from round and soft wombs and nests, and eventually everything is returning to the smooth nature of roundness. The life-giving, creative, and protective feminine nature plays an important role in the awareness-intelligent understanding of a return to roundness that we so badly need.

(Edited excerpt from M. Sager, 2018. Awareness Intelligence)

#art #artist #painting #modernart #contemporaryart #abstractpainting #abstract #modernabstract #acrylicpainting #psychology #philosophy #spirituality #roundness #awarenessintelligence

How we became from a “pulling from” to a “pushed to” society

NOWHERE-TO-GO GENERATION (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 120 x 150 cm)

Do you realize that the pendulum switched? The future is here. There were only a few gaps to close, why even the digital generation has not been aware of losing their possibility to pull. It is definitely history that with free choice we can selectively draw from the endless streams of tunneled information to which we are bound. In the past you could find out where things were coming from without having to reveal your own origin / location. Today this is exactly the opposite. Today, in every area of life, things are pushed to us by the invisible, de facto uncontrollable global and artificial intelligence-enabled online content and service providers. These pushes are non-locatable and ubiquitous at the same time. There is no “where” anymore, except for ourselves, where we are assigned IP addresses, IDs, and usernames.

Our lifestyles and businesses now definitely got dominated by the rules of a (dystopian?) virtual world. This connectivity-enforced new disconnectedness will leave us for some time with mere memories of having lived in an in-person-world, where citizens had the choice between onsite and online services, where customers used to be king, where people were asked about the ‘why’ behind their data, and where they exchanged goods for tangible values. Internet platforms are inherently gravitating towards dominant market positions. Gone are the times where monopolistic situations and the related risk of abuse of power could be regulated, gone are the times where the “where” could be located and where the truth could be verified. Welcome to the no “where” generation.

By the way:

In the course of the upcoming ongoing mutations of viruses and the expected communication of the continuation of the contact restrictions, will we then receive a QUOTE FOR GOING OUT? Will citizens receive x tickets for cultural events such as concerts and museums, y vouchers for parties and z tokens for dining out? In this way, seditious uprisings by the people can be prevented (we’ve already come to terms with the privileged opportunities of richer citizens), and the online industry does not have to forego the continuation of the profits it has made since the beginning of the Corona crisis …

There may not be all bad:-). However, for alternative, possibly more humanistic approaches, there are a lot of ideas you can find on my website www.mathias-sager.com.

Break out

BREAK OUT (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on wood panel, 80 x 80 cm)

We know that

Santa Claus is a fairytale,

and yet

we keep it alive.

We know that

many regulations and laws are ridiculous,

and yet

we follow them obediently.

We know that

corporate sustainability is an afterthought,

and yet

we don’t insist on keeping them accountable.

We know that

our identity is a product of socialization,

and yet

we believe that’s who we are.

And all because if we want to fit in, we have to bend. [see last painting]

DO WE HAVE THE COURAGE TO BREAK OUT?

#art #artist #painting #acrylicpainting #painter #modernart #contemporaryart #modernabstract #figurativeart #breakout #liberation #courage #psychology #awarenessintelligence

BRICH AUS (M. Sager, 2021. Acryl auf Holzpanel, 80 x 80 cm)

Wir wissen, dass

der Weihnachtsmann ein Märchen ist,

und doch

halten wir es am Leben.

Wir wissen, dass

viele Vorschriften und Gesetze lächerlich sind,

und doch

folgen wir ihnen gehorsam.

Wir wissen, dass

die Nachhaltigkeit von Unternehmen eine Alibi-Uebung ist,

und doch

bestehen wir nicht darauf, sie zur Rechenschaft zu ziehen.

Wir wissen, dass

unsere Identität ein Produkt von Sozialisierung ist,

und doch

glauben wir, dass wir das sind.

Und das alles, weil wenn wir reinpassen wollen, müssen wir uns beugen. [siehe letztes Gemälde]

HABEN WIR DEN MUT, AUSZUBRECHEN?

#Kunst #Künstler #Malen #Gemälde #Acryl #Modernekunst #Zeitgenössischekunst #abstrakt #figurativ #ausbrechen #befreien #Mut #Psychologie #awarenessintelligence #Bewusstseinsintelligenz

Modern primitive

Modern primitive (M. Sager, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 120 x 150 cm)

The modern tools are sold to human RESOURCES as:

  • education
  • knowledge
  • fulfillment
  • skills / ability
  • happiness
  • connection

However, the human BEINGS suffer:

  • distraction
  • fake information
  • emptiness
  • numbness / disability
  • pleasure / addiction
  • disconnection

LET YOURSELF OFFEND. The benefits of letting you get offended.

You get an understanding and compassionate ear here, but the most significant benefit lies in permitting me to offend you. First of all, if I didn’t dare to offend, I couldn’t be honest. Being offended offers a real-world check outside of one’s comfort zone. Second, if I solely entertained you, I’d waste your time distracting from the real work to be done. I will, however, offend you with substance, so you can accomplish getting very clear on your worldview / identity: Who are you really beyond social conditioning? What would you stand for if you had the self-confidence to overcome social pressure? Why are you here as a complete human being beyond economic considerations? Also, the feeling of being offended is a warning indicator that is showing you where to look within yourself for unresolved issues.

I may offend people, but I also make it easy for them to forgive me. You’re not alone; my content and approaches contain wisdom that offends quite everyone. I love people in general (not only the proximate ones who flatter me), and that’s why I care to offend you too. To be genuinely kind means to have the courage to offend. Of course, people like sugar. But shall I, therefore, feed them with more of what is not suitable for health? I’ve learned that if I love myself, I have the courage to allow me to get offended (which doesn’t mean to let me abuse, though).

If we feel offended without being able to forgive the offender, we actually say to disagree with the Right of Freedom of Expression. By instilling more fear, people become more susceptible to being offended without the willingness to forgive. And that’s how the freedom of expression gets strategically undermined by authoritarian systems. Today people are brought to be offended by others just breathing (we can even see it by people wearing masks;-)). It’s more important than ever to stand up for the right to offend, which is implicitly part of the Right of Freedom of Expression. So, have the courage to use the right to offend “sacred” symbols (who says they are sacred?), offend emotions and feelings, offend countries, governments, organizations, as well as political parties, religions, and traditions, and cultures.

Living in a comfort-seeking and fear-based materialistic society, my humanistic approach rejecting salvation-seeking from extrospection is offending people, of course. For me, however, respecting people doesn’t mean accepting their illnesses, victim roles, and unfulfilled potential. If we respected such unhealthy limitations, we’d offend humanity (and life, or god, as you like) as a whole. Indeed, many people live life in the offense to life itself as they put material goods over life. Yes, we justify our physical survival (which in our society doesn’t have much to do with survival rather than with a decadent luxury lifestyle) by not assuming responsibility for the many who suffer hunger, exploitation, and abuse.

I deliberately combine the science of psychology, the wisdom of philosophy and the intuition of art. Art is often very well suited to insulting people, challenging them and opening them up to creative and self-reflective thinking. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to offend or hurt someone who doesn’t care. This is the reason why people often have no interest in the artistic (or spiritual).

Group thinking inhibits critical thinking in favor of a wider human community. For example, religions proclaim to spread unconditional love and the universal truth of their respective God, but feel offended by other religions that believe in another God, who in turn should represent the same unconditional love and absolute truth according to these others. That’s the big lie of hypocrites on both sides. Such belief systems do base on exclusivity to offer fearful people the seeming security of belonging, which, however, they nevertheless never experience (therefore their defensive attitude). But there is a more inclusive way to feel more satisfyingly human. Learn to love truly! Love is the opposite of fear. If you’ve learned to get offended, you’ve learned to love. Love is hard to offend; a heart full of love doesn’t get irritated and offended irrevocably; it doesn’t see the world in terms of threats against one’s ego-assumed superiority, advantages, and privileges over others. Instead, strong minds who dare to seek being offended, not for hate but growth purposes, can find what humans actually are looking for: actualizing themselves through meaningful change toward their best self (which can’t be measured by material success alone, to make that clear once more).

You may have enough “friends” who will tell you what you want to hear and who are happy that you are unsuccessful (because it justifies their own stagnation). If I can’t offend you, I haven’t done my work of serving you decisively. With this in mind, thank you for allowing us to offend each other, not with style, but with substance for learning opportunities for our personal growth, individually and as a human collective.

The mountain

The mountain (M. Sager 2021, acrylic on canvas, 50 x 70 cm)

Pleasures are shortcuts for joy, meaning does trump happiness, and everything starts with being your true self as if there were no expectations and boundaries to you. Don’t take the lift and complain about bad fitness; climb one mountain after the other. Unlearn the stories of deficiencies you told yourself. Overcome the illusion of being able to possess or be possessed by any worldly thing or person, and thereby take the chance to choose change toward a more awareness-intelligent humanness.

(Excerpt from Awareness Intelligence, M. Sager. 2019)

#art #artist #painting #acrylicpainting #modernart #contemporaryart #modernabstract #abstractart #awarenessintelligence #mountain #trueself #meaning #joy

Dangerous highway

Dangerous highway (M. Sager 2021, acrylic on canvas, 60 x 80 cm)

People who are not able to coordinate complex multi-limb movements with their bodies are called disabled and are not allowed to do certain things like, for example, driving a car as it would be too dangerous for others. But people who are unable to coordinate complex multi-perspective situations in their minds are allowed to run organizations and countries.

In contrast to a leg-focused person who forgets about the arm-movement and therefore is realistically considered a risk for driving a vehicle, a single-minded career, for example, of exclusively fighting for one particular group’s interest is likely to be admired. Standing up for one group to succeed over others from a humanitarian perspective, however, is like prioritizing eating over drinking. Thus, the organism of humankind is doomed to die.

Paths to the true self

Have fun looking at it (www.mathias-sager.com) and if you like what you see, welcome, and please spread the word. Thanks!

The power of self-reflection

Self-reflection is the adventurous process of (1) becoming aware of self-judgment and developing self-motivation, (2) finding self-reliance and applying self-leadership, and (3) using self-imagination and exerting self-control.

There are available live 1-to-1 sessions on www.mathias-sager.com. Call, chat, or video-call!

To dig through the ‘dirt’ yourself, or to crave the worm on the hook?

People were made to be loved. Things were created to be used. The reason the world is in chaos is because things are loved and people are used. – Dalai Lama

Do you follow the market or nature? Are you a consumer or a creator? Are you a capitalist or a humanist? Yes, it’s an either-or decision! You cannot run and drive, fast and eat at the same time, or increase shareholder value and keep all jobs in a crisis. The decision is always to be made. However, most people get overwhelmed by consumption habits in the process as we are never told what to do but are constantly told what to buy.

A simple everyday example: Many people have forgotten during or after their childhood that our natural way of maintaining strong and healthy feet is to walk barefoot. Instead, we are sold cushions and supports that degenerate our walking form, weaken our joints and impair our feeling of grip. Not good for the individual, but profitable not only for the shoe industry, but also for the medical industry. Or that the weather is only as bad as our clothes, they say. This is an interesting concept from a sales perspective, but catastrophic to our ability to benefit from hot and cold exposure. For this reason, companies like to offer saunas and cryotherapy instead. So, what we lost in nature can be bought back in the market.

These upside-down worlds are omnipresent. And the more frustrating the turning away from the appreciation of all of our nature, the more salvation is promised and sought in the market. A vicious circle. Therefore, it seems like better advice to do exactly the opposite of what is being advertised to us. Some examples:

  • Have you saved money and now interest rates are falling and the only ones benefiting from it are financial institutions? Have you invested in stocks and now investors have earned on the upswing while the small investors bear the loss after the big ones exit? In the real estate market, too, the little fish are usually one step too late.
  • Have you invested in diplomas and are now overqualified?
  • Have you been able to keep up with showing how much you enjoy eating and drinking and being part of the foodie lifestyle, but need to consider hiring a weight loss coach?
  • Are you using stairs, elevators, and other equipment that promises you a more comfortable life, but you are thinking of buying an indoor treadmill, gym membership, or something similar?
  • How has the daily media news contributed to your personal growth? If these leave you sad, angry, worried, and stressed out, it is recommended that you get a prescription for medicine and book a relaxing vacation somewhere for a week or two. It won’t be without side effects (though additional pills may be available for) or enough, of course, but you can rebook and change your lifestyle after you retire, right? – I doubt.
  • Etc.

The more I take care not to fall victim to every marketing trend, every scare tactic, and every commercially exploited promise of salvation, the clearer it becomes. The people who pull the cords would prefer me to be dependent on their help like a farm animal; that makes them appear charitable despite the moneymaking. However, in contrast to fully bred farm animal breeds, I believe that our natural human self-efficacy and responsibility are still available to us. It is still possible to find much healthier and more satisfying alternatives for much of what is suggested to be consumed on the market through our own activities according to our nature. Because in the end I actually prefer digging in the dirt myself than craving for the worm on the hook.

What are your examples and experiences?

The XXI Century ‘Bread and Games’ Death Trap

e.g.

• Bread = Amazon

• Games = Netflix

• Late Roman decadence = late capitalist decadence

• Gladiators = social media «influencers»

• Visitors/Spectators = On the screens

• Plague = corona virus

• Decline of business and culture = “Corona” measures

• Further elimination of democratic elements, “royal” campaigns in the deserted areas (e.g. under Charlemagne) = “Corona” consequences (weakening of the middle class and sell-off of SMEs, expansion of global online monopolies)

BECOME RESILIENT: How to mentally configure the three basic human needs of safety, satisfaction, and connectedness

This article is part of a collaborative effort to shed light on the critically important topic of resilience. Three perspectives, however, revealing common patterns of the concept and approaches to become more resilient. You can read the original collaborative post on Patty’s Blog featuring the skilled helpers listed below: https://pattywolters.com/blog/2020/12/24/resilience-skilled-helpers-collaborative/

Full article by Mathias Sager (Psychology & Art)

BECOME RESILIENT: How to mentally configure the three basic human needs of safety, satisfaction, and connectedness

Inspiration and wholeness in nature (Rigi, Switzerland)

“Resilience is a process reflecting positive adaptation in the face of adversity” [1, p. 1]. What adversity means to different people depends on individual, socio-cultural, and contextual circumstances.

The Big Five or five-factor personality assessment model (FFM) was found to be able to depict the concept of resiliency as a personality aspect as accurately as specific resiliency measurement tools [2]. Personality traits described and assessed with the five-factor model [3] consist of five mostly independent personality trait dimensions, i.e.,

  • extraversion,
  • conscientiousness,
  • agreeableness,
  • neuroticism, and
  • openness to experience [4].

A resilient personality is characterized by high scores on the FFM dimensions of extraversion, conscientiousness, agreeableness, and openness to experience, and low scores in neuroticism [5]. Openness to experience seems to be particularly important; it should be seen as’ openness to cultural diversity’ too [6], including the ability to regulate one’s emotions [7] and to avoid extensive sensation seeking, which, for example, bears the risk of substance abuse [6]. Equipped with such personal abilities, the rapid (global) changes in our times [8] caused by ever novel, complex, and changing socio-economical, environmental, technological, and health-related factors [9] can be met with higher resilience.

Other psychological concepts related to coping with adversity are the so-called ‘tolerance for ambiguity’ and ‘tolerance for uncertainty’ measures. These abilities are closely linked to mindfulness. For example, people educated in open-mindedness and who have learned to tolerate ambiguity can better persevere in their tolerance even in situations of insecurity and danger [10]. In that context, hope as related to resilience is enabling individuals to imagine a better future and to endure the present despite the uncertainty for such an achievement [11]. However, it’s not done with hope alone. A strong belief in and an identification with the possibility of achievement are the drivers for the work ethic that required for the realization of the hope. That way, in a first step, the promotion of hope might be a useful approach to reduce uncertainty intolerance and consequently to increase the tolerance for ambiguity for a more open-mindedness that leaves room for thoughtful and empathic decisions that lead to work towards desired and desirable outcomes.

Yes, a major outcome of resilience is empathy. It’s not threats themselves, but how people can resiliently respond to them. If there is no openness to decipher ambiguous, uncertain information, one risks to take the shortcut of, for example, stereotyping and promote black-and-white thinking that is further hindering an open mindset. A vicious spiral, indeed!

Maslow (1968) made the point that we are oriented toward either growth or safety in our everyday lives and that a growth orientation is more favorable for psychological health and well-being [12]. When self-protection (needs) get reduced, self-awareness can arise and facilitate the appreciation of multiple possibilities in situations, which might be the stage of personal development where tolerance for ambiguity as the capacity to accept paradoxes starts to become feasible [13]. Systems of mass conformity, authoritarianism, and nationalism/racism (as well as an emotional attachment to materialism in general) are offered as a means for safety, unfortunately at the cost of growth possibilities through autonomy, creativity, and the use of reason.

Unfortunately, “dealing with ambiguity, respectively the ability to cope with adversity (resilience) is seldom taught, but individuals striving for higher qualities tend to understand that uncertainty is the gateway to opportunity” [14, p. 30]. Therefore, societies should prepare the next generation for life, and it will be crucial how we instill hope and support our children to live constructively with uncertainties while retaining a high tolerance for ambiguity and open-mindedness as required to be truly resilient and find the solutions sought for the benefit of all [15].

Practically spoken, to get more resilient, one needs to be ready to adapt her/his belief system. Unfortunately, our ‘stable identity’ obsessed ego causes us to not like change. Nevertheless, as long as there is a fear of loss, there will always be defense mechanisms that hamper open-mindedness, and as a result, resilience too. There is good news, though, to adopt a resilient belief system, the three basic human needs of (1) safety, (2) satisfaction, and (3) connectedness don’t need to be abandoned, while it is essential to think about their socio-temporal ‘configuration’, which I call Awareness Intelligence:

  1. Access your spiritual source, your intuition, free from social conditioning, and as close to the source of life that has brought you here. You are part of the intelligent universe independent of your upbringing; what else could be safer.
  2. Meet others in the here and now openly, without past judgments and future expectations. Such non-transactional and unconditional love brings the highest satisfaction.
  3. Expand from separateness to wholeness. The future isn’t about physical survival as long as possible; it is about meaning and connecting to the whole humanity (even future generations) and our soul during a lifetime. With such a connectedness, future worries dissolve.

Resources:

[1] Kelly, Y., Fitzgerald, A., & Dooley, B. (2017). Validation of the Resilience Scale for Adolescents (READ) in Ireland: a multi-group analysis. International Journal Of Methods In Psychiatric Research, 26(2).

[2] Waaktaar, T., & Torgersen, S. (2010). How resilient are resilience scales? The Big Five scales outperform resilience scales in predicting adjustment in adolescents. Scandinavian Journal Of Psychology, 51(2), 157-163.

[3] Howell, G. T., & Zelenski, J. M. (2017). Personality self-concept affects processing of trait adjectives in the self-reference memory paradigm. Journal of Research in Personality, 66, 1-   13.

[4] McCrea, R. R., & Costa, P. T. (1987). Validation of the five-factor model of personality across instruments and observers. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 52, 81–90.

[5] Lazaridou, A., & Beka, A. (2015). Personality and resilience characteristics of Greek primary school principals. Educational Management Administration & Leadership, 43(5), 772-791.

[6] Morizot, J. (2014). Construct Validity of Adolescents’ Self-Reported Big Five Personality Traits: Importance of Conceptual Breadth and Initial Validation of a Short Measure. Assessment, 21(5), 580-606.

[7] Shaw, P. s. (2016). Commentary: Mapping the young, resilient brain -reflections on Burt et al. (2016). Journal Of Child Psychology & Psychiatry, 57(12), 1465-1466.

[8] Brendel, W. )., Hankerson, S. )., Byun, S. )., & Cunningham, B. ). (2016). Cultivating leadership Dharma: Measuring the impact of regular mindfulness practice on creativity, resilience, tolerance for ambiguity, anxiety and stress. Journal Of Management Development, 35(8), 1056-1078.

[9] Herman, J. L., Stevens, M. J., Bird, A., Mendenhall, M., & Oddou, G. (2010). The tolerance for ambiguity scale: Towards a more refined measure for international management research. International Journal Of Intercultural Relations, 34(1), 58-65.

[10] Bright, L. K., & Mahdi, G. S. (2012). U.S./Arab Reflections on Our Tolerance for Ambiguity. Adult Learning, 23(2), 86-89.

[11] Wilson, M. J., & Arvanitakis, J. (2013). The Resilience Complex. M/C Journal, 16(5), 17.

[12] Maslow, A. H. (1968). Toward a Psychology of Being. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

[13] Hartman, D., & Zimberoff, D. (2008). Higher Stages of Human Development. Journal Of Heart- Centered Therapies, 11(2), 3-95.

[14] Shullman, S. L., & White, R. P. (2012). Build Leadership’s Tolerance for Ambiguity. Chief Learning Officer, 11(10), 30-33.

[15] Einwanger, J. (2014). Wie riskant ist Sicherheit? (German). Pädiatrie & Pädologie, 49(4), 33.