Monday, August 13, 2007

Remembering Buckminster Fuller

I often think of Buckminster Fuller and his global village concept. I used to love to pore over diagrams of planned dome communities that were eco-friendly and managed everything from waste to traffic by being intelligent; by having the right master plan. For those who may not know what a master plan is, it’s a plan that allows for projected growth within an existing schematic.

My nature is to study trends, both globally and personally. I can’t do much about the former but I have a lot of say in the latter. Global trends have a lot of influence over personal trends, whether those affected know it or not. It might be something as casual as fashion and it might be something more ominous like manufactured fear for crowd control.

Awareness is a given and I think we can all agree that it is different in a plant than it is in an ant and different in a dog than it is in a human. My personal observations lead me to believe that there is a distance between various humans as great as that between a dog and a human. If you’re aware of something you are somewhat informed about it. if you’re not aware of it then it is affecting you without your knowledge.

Sometimes the river rises and it can be dangerous. Sometimes it doesn’t and it’s not. Everything has trends and trends always repeat and bring with them particular social and political circumstances. Given the nature of karma it is impossible that this would be a perfectly peaceful world. This is a world where one should, as Mayakovski said, “expect the unexpected”.

Given that the world is an unstable place, composed of 4 warring elements manifested out of a 5th it behooves the observer to pay attention to trends. Some periods are not as safe as others and it’s smarter to live on the margins; to take note of geophysical areas where shit and fan are not interactive and migrate. It doesn’t matter where you presently are; you’re never that far from a place where shit and fan are not unpleasantly interactive. If you live in China or the Middle East you might have more of a problem but that brings us back to karma.

It’s always better to get karma paid off as quickly as possible. Most people aren’t concerned about this any more than they are concerned about getting out of debt as soon as possible. It’s the present trend, America-style to be deep in debt because you can and somehow it will work out. There are ways to pay down karma without directly addressing the specific karma. Effort in a particular direction can counterbalance the scales. The more intense the effort the more intense and rapid the result; physics teaches this.

In the 60’s we had; great music, LSD, communes, free love, spiritual teachers and a generally easier pace and lifestyle than we see now; even if you had no money it wasn’t that bad and you could do something about it. Before I get to the present I want to comment on a period where things changed for the worst because of a couple of things. Ronald Reagan waved his wand and all of a sudden poor people couldn’t live in their own neighborhoods anymore and the mental institutions were opened and the street became the out-patient clinic for the former residents.

In the present we have; bad music, cheese heroin and sundry, condos, AIDS, social reformers and a much less easy pace and lifestyle, unless you are in that minority class of the financially blessed because, these days, it’s all about the money. It wasn’t always about the money. It was perfectly fine to be poor. For some it was an actual choice. Sure, there’s always been censure but this is a world of conflict. We’re never short on Pharisees and demagogues. Sometimes we see less of them, sometimes we see more.

Nobody did much about manifesting Buckminster Fuller's global village concept. Today, with suburban sprawl and urban congestion, which is unable to keep pace with the population explosion, Fuller’s ideas seem prescient and valid. Fuller once said that he could design a structure that would cause a couple to get a divorce in a week. He was talking about condos.

It’s all about a few people making the highest possible profit that accounts for all of the shoddy manufacture- via cost cutting- and execrable taste. They want the biggest bang for the buck. Because these people finance the politicians who are supposed to serve your interest they get away with murder, literally. This isn’t a good trend.

The interest only, adjustable rate mortgage, housing scam is rocking the world’s economy and you haven’t heard the end of that by any means. Many of us reported on this some time ago. We were laughed at the same way as when we pointed out the determined march toward martial law. We’ve come a ways down the road since then and some of these things now loom large. The same people are laughing the way they laughed at Buckminster Fuller. Not many people are well read concerning Buckminster Fuller. Let me say that he wasn’t just about domes.

There’s this trend that always appears in human affairs where the population becomes less and less aware and less and less involved in what is going on around them. There’s this trend that appears where the few screw the many all the way up to the point where really bad things begin to happen. Oswald Spengler made some very interesting points about how these cycles and trends tend to repeat.

There’s this condition in human affairs to do what is expedient because it is cheaper than doing it right. By this time the world could be far more efficiently designed. In some countries in this world you can see that efficiency at work, but never at the maximum level because every country has sociopathic types who want everything they can get. Utopia doesn’t happen here and some people have tried. It doesn’t happen because the world is the world is the world. It doesn’t have to be but it is.

In some countries you see streetcars and bike paths and recycling (not the America kind where they just take the material and offload it in the dump too). In some countries most of the people really care about what is going on and you can’t mess with them or there will be riots. That’s a good thing. In America you see conspicuous consumption and you only have to look at the rapidly mutating body types to see where that leads. Big pigs can’t turn the place into a sty without the help of all of the other not-so-little pigs. Some would say that the prohibition against eating pork comes from a time when it could be unhealthy to consume it. I don’t believe that at all. I think it’s about something else and I’ll leave that to your imagination.

The thing about trends is that they do change. Presently a lot of the trends are bad. It’s something to think about. We’ve had a lot of bright people pass by this way. Buckminster Fuller is certainly one of them. We didn’t pay any attention to him. We don’t pay attention to a lot of wonderful inventions and breakthroughs in the fields of energy and medicine and a host of areas because they interfere with the profit margin. Some of these people are bankrupted, sent to pariah-Ville and on occasion killed. That’s the world and that’s karma too.

It takes a special kind of personality to ‘really’ think outside the box. It takes a determined soul to break away from the global trends and break their own trends on their way to the discovery of a new frontier. Our new frontier is the mind but it doesn’t mean much if we don’t exercise it. I want to thank Buckminster Fuller for having taken the time to come here and share his dreams, even if very few people paid attention. I want to thank a bunch of people that I’m not going to name for having taken the trouble and the knocks for saying something different and bucking the trends. I am grateful.

There are a lot of ways to improve your life no matter what global trends portend. There are safe harbors and new frontiers. Most of humanity is locked on rails and that’s karma too. They will suffer often, they will dance on occasion and they will mourn and regret. A lot of people are hanging on to the top of a wall and they are afraid to let go. Their hands are growing into the cliff. It’s too bad because the ground is only inches beneath their feet. The leap of faith is only as wide as your fear.

Visible sings: The Sacred and The Profane by Les Visible♫ Vanity ♫
'Vanity' is track no. 7 of 13 on Visible's 2007 album 'The Sacred and The Profane'
Lyrics (pops up)

The Sacred and The Profane by Les Visible


Anonymous said...

Les - This is a kick ass essay. This is not my usual blog to comment on but I'm glad I stopped by. This one almost belongs on the spiritual blog too.


Anonymous said...

Well, you surprised me again! I'm also a huge fan/advocate of Buckminster Fuller, who among other things also showed how ours would be a much more efficient society if the vast majority of us just stayed home most days. Many people thought technology was for freeing humanity from mundane toil, but hold an imperial boot on a population's neck and their labor will remain cheaper than the technology, but only in the short term. Mr. Fuller looked ahead a little further than most...

Fuller was heard by those who needed to hear, but unfortunately he was consciously ignored. "Speaking truth to power" always ends up like that, since power already knows some truth, or it would not be the power. The undoing of power comes from the arrogant belief that it knows the whole truth. Unfortunately this undoing can take a while.

Fuller's thoughts and ideas are still supremely relevant, and will certainly help anyone to "think outside the box" if nothing else. You know, I always hated that phrase, because to me it's a tacit admission that I'm stuck inside a box (and whether that's true or not is irrelevant to my feelings about it!).

The hard part for me about commenting on your blogs, Les, is stopping. I just trimmed this one by two-thirds, for instance. You have a knack for making my brain get off it's butt and go jogging. Thanks!

-The Village Idiot

Anonymous said...

‘A lot of people are hanging on to the top of a wall and they are afraid to let go. Their hands are growing into the cliff. It’s too bad because the ground is only inches beneath their feet. The leap of faith is only as wide as your fear.’
You use that a lot in your writings Les.
Is this not what the current generation of fear is all about - to get everyone to close their eyes and hang on for grim death? While they’re doing this, anything happens.

Visible said...

I don't like that phrase either and I used it in the context of it relating to people who use it- or thought I did. I don't like catch phrases at all; especially things like, "on the ground". What did we ever do before we had that one?

The chief joy I get in doing this is in the level of intelligence displayed by the people who read here. I've been lucky or charmed or something because I would say that I have an outstanding group of readers at all three blogs. It makes me feel like I'm doing something right.

My history has been such that people generally view me with suspicion and often fear. At least that is what I've found in my 'in person' life. I don't know if it's what I talk about or the way the thoughts in my mind affect my environment but I am just unable to integrate into the mix no matter how hard I may have tried at times.

It doesn't matter what costumes I wear or what roles I've played, most people give me a wide berth; which is fine most of the time because I'm a recluse anyway.

Once I had quite the social life. I performed a lot and traveled a lot and had some close friends as well. Life seems to swallow people up. I still have those friends but there're where they are and I'm in expatria.

It's funny how life arranges around us according to our disposition.

Well, back to whatever I was doing.

Anonymous said...

The hard part for me about commenting on your blogs, Les, is stopping...

-The Village Idiot

That is good to hear. I thought it was just me. heh heh

Les' writings really get me fired up too. So much so at times, that I refrain from posting anything. I consider writing just a word or two, but it seems so inadequate ...and so much has been triggered.

Like this little gem (of many) on *awareness* for example:

"My personal observations lead me to believe that there is a distance between various humans as great as that between a dog and a human."

That's exactly what my son and I were discussing the night before I read it here! I s'pose it's about wavelengths, and which one/s you happen to be on.
Synchronicities and coincidences aside (or maybe not) there's definitely something magical, mystical going on. It's palpable, tangible. I can feel it.


"outside the box"! Blecch! I too have always hated that expression, among others. It's just dumb, dull, unimaginative corpse-speak. Notice how close Corp.
(corporation) and Corpse are? Yeah, no accident there.

And now this LV comment from here:

"My history has been such that people generally view me with suspicion and often fear..."

I can relate! And I read something very cool a while back which helps me to understand/cope with this phenomenon. The gist of it is that some of us are butterflies,
while others are caterpillars. And while butterflies can easily understand caterpillar language, having already graduated from that stage of life, caterpillars cannot (yet) understand butterfly language.

Bucky Fuller et al...? Butterflies, indeed :)

Hasta luego...grazie mille, annemarie

Anonymous said...

Yes, as Fuller said, the structures in which we live affect us in unseen ways. Look at the world and the modern structures in which people live (for the most part). Arbitrary boxes with straight lines, loaded with toxins and electromagnetic energies colliding with our bodies. These structures cause entropy, chaos to rule. "Uncivilized" cultures understood sacred geometry and the effects on those who enter. Many years ago I was invited to teach sacred geometry in, of all places, India. I met with architects and endeavored to push them back (gently) to using sacred proportions. But they were so stuck in the collective modern mind shit, that the importance was lost on them. All they could see were rupee signs... Perhaps after the cleansing which will most likely occur, the enlightened survivors will create more gentle harmonious structures which will enliven, those who live in them. The screeching grey concrete-steel Faraday cages will come tumbling down, to be replaced with structures which feed us and the Earth Mother...

Singing Sparrow said...

So I think that you may be away for a bit but I really need to tell you this story (I don't think that this is for publication although I am not opposed to that.)
Tonight I was talking about you to my SO and my daughter, Amy, and grandchildren Courtney and Arvin have been staying with us for a few days because their power is off at their place a money has been tight. At any rate I was talking about your music to Steve (who is also a muscian) and my daughter says, "Les Visable? Les Visable? I know Les Visable. He used to go with Anita and he worked at Paradise Fruit. I said Les Visable? You know Les Visable? Well I am Gerald's ex-wife and once shared a psychedelic day with Gerald and Anita when she mistakenly thought I envied her youth when all I was doing was admiring her youth and ended up in a ball literally due to my life long problem of not getting my point across and being too weak in ego at that point to really clarify anything.
Any way this is just more of the star dust that has always come sprinkling down on me into my life causing me to go AHHHHHH!!
I so loved your story and I was so touched by the honesty and simplicity (not here but over on the other site)that I just tingled.Now I am just full energy and ready for another round. It is this kind of magic that keeps me going and growing and loving.
Oh and that other guy who suggested that we might be autistic for wanting to hear from you is wrong. I don't wait around like a rejected puppy I just want more.Rarely do I encounter the openess and clarity I find here. After you wrote about yourself I thought I understood-I also have learned love and light thru failure, loss and regret-absolutely we can have it all if only we are willing to lose it all. Love and light to you.

Visible said...

Whoa! small world. I remember Amy very well. Imagine that. heh heh. What a trip.

It means a great deal that you appreciate what I do. Most of the time it is the only payment I get except for the joy of sitting near the faucet.

I really don't have much to do with any of it. it just runs out and I'm glad it's mostly positive.

I must say I am amused at the information you brought out. And touched by your comments as well.

Visible said...

New blog entry here.

Visible said...

New essay at

Anonymous said...

Next Generation... Doomed.



Joseph Brenner

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