The Dance of Life LO5333

Ray Evans Harrell (
Sun, 4 Feb 1996 05:26:44 -0500

>               Alan Scharf, Futurist (1) 
> When I was a kid, neither students or university professors 
>could afford to own a car. Strangely none complained--Now they 
>               consider them essential. 
>                   This will end.


          "By daylight a fire fell.
           Three stars together it seemed;
           flaming, bearing tails.
           Out of the West it came, 
           falling in a rain of sparks, 
           running to East. 
           The people saw, and screamed 
           with a noise like the shaking 
           of bells."

        "By night a voice was heard in the air:
                a woman, crying,
        'Oh, my children, we must go far away.'
                at times she cried:
        'Oh, my children, where can I take you?"
                                from the Nahuatl


>The last 10,000 years of our biological, spiritual, cultural, artistic,
>legal and military existence have been driven by agricultural land
>expansion. This expansion stopped for all time in North America in the
>1930's. Yields have increased little (check it out).      
                                                  Alan Scharf

        "When you depart from this life to the next,
                   Oh King Yoyontzin,
         The time will come when your vassals
            will be broken and destroyed,
      And all your things will be engulfed by oblivion...
         For this is the inevitable outcome of all 
               powers, empires, and domains;
             Transitory are they and unstable.
              The time of life is borrowed, 
                     in an instant 
               It must be left behind."

>Three decades is a terribly short and short-sighted time to contemplate the
>global future. My son will just be reaching the prime of his life then. What
>he sees will not be science fiction, but reality. His kids won't believe him
>when he tells them about bank tellers, taxi drivers, and jobs.
                                                    Alan Scharf
                 WILL NEVER PERISH." 
                                Chimalpain (historian)


          I am nothing more than a singer
                flower is my heart
                I give you my song
                everything I was is here
                my fan my feathers my scents
                my bent cane flower of paper
                in the house of sea moss
                in the house of light
                        (version Steven Boyd)

        "Nothing, says Father Acosta, caused me so much 
   admiration and seems to be more worthy of praise and
   remembering, than the care and discipline with which the 
   Mexica raised their children.  In effect, it would be 
   quite difficult to find a nation which in its times of 
   paganism gave more attention to this element of highest
   importance to the state."


Just as we were created with a gene that says we must grow old and die, so
do we have a part that says that we must sow our own defeat in our victory
over our fellows. If we wish to survive then we must find a way to give
respect to all of life, even the life we must devour. And most of all we
must not lie with charts and statistics that steal the meaning of life
from "others." Just as we demand it for ourselves, so must we give it. I
don't know whether the Aztecs "called" Cortez with their intense
negativity, but they certainly had the sadness and he did arrive on the
very date that they expected, carrying the symbol that he was supposed to.
(The same symbol that Dr. Deming used for his Cycle of Learning, on a
superficial level it meant the same to the Mexica.) They thought Cortez to
be God.

Although they had plenty of enemies, they still had the best school system
on earth (universal) and planted food along the road for the poor. Even
with their minimum one human sacrifice a day, they still killed thousands
fewer than Rome did for entertainment and Rome was a smaller city. (We
sacrifice more to the God "Dictulena"(2) in four years then they did in
their entire reign.)

In Tenochtitlan, the world's largest city, the process of empathy ate at
their hearts until they sang the first two songs as they saw demons coming
out of the walls and running through the streets. (They even killed a few
wrestlers.) The difference was in the consciousness of the victims. The
victims knew they were a human sacrifice and expected to live with the
gods. Also, unlike the Romans, the Mexica refused to make the victim an
"other" and thus felt empathy for the sacrifice. I wonder if the
"wretched refuse of our teeming shores" our "walking wounded" can say the

The Azteca thought Cortez was a God when he landed, they found out quickly
the he wasn't and in the end Cortez admitted that it was they, the Mexica
who fought and died like Gods. Will we do the same for our inheritance?
If we want to claim success in our present and for the future then we must
know the past.(3) Jesus said it in the temple, Einstein said it in physics
and the Lakota refer to it when they end a prayer. Life is a relationship
and success is relative to our enlightenment. We say we aren't a human
until we have the courage to seek our enlightenment Until then, we're just
"two-leggeds." If you wish to claim success in your present, and for the
future, then you must know the past, otherwise you may mistake your work
for ("a feeble echo of something else"(4)) and mistakenly believe it
creativity and genius and wreak havoc seven generations deep.

Ray Evans Harrell
(1) My thanks to Alan Scharf for his sensitive exploration of
the future and I wish for his son as for my own daughter.
That we will leave the world for them as it was left
for us. "When you leave a place it is just good manners
to leave it at least as well as you found it."
(Tsa La Gi "Proverb".)
(2) "Dictulena" is the Cherokee word for automobile.
(3) "Private Capitalism" Was tried by the Dawes Commission on
the Cherokee Nation in the late 19th century. It
reduced an intelligent, caring people to ruin. See Angie
Debo "And Still The Waters Run" pg. 23-30 Princeton Univ.
(4) I.A. Richards "Practical Criticism" pg.293 Harcourt etc.


The month of February:

I'm sorry but I have a student making a recording for
Arista, another auditioning for the Stats Oper and
the Richard Tucker Foundation, a young student doing her
first recital at Columbia and the material is staggering.
I enjoy our conversations and will come back as soon as
I am able. I hope that it has been as good for you as
for me. Thanks.

I am unsubscribing to save my e-mail. I will try to keep up
by following (as I am in town) on the WWW. I will return
mail as I am in the city, please feel free to discuss although
I may be a little slow. Also, I will finish unfinished
conversations that I promised. I especially enjoyed the
latest work on culture and still feel that the best work
done on time and culture is Edward T. Hall. If you haven't
already read his work on polychronic and monochronic time
frames in differing cultures I would recommend it. It's
a good read. It's called
"The Dance of Life."


Ray Evans Harrell
Artistic Director
The Magic Circle Opera Repertory Ensemble, Inc. 
200 West 70th Street, Suite 6-c
New York City, New York 10023-4324