1. Great article, some very valid points.

    ” Bentham in particular said that human beings naturally act to maximize their “utility” – avoidance of pain and experiencing of pleasure. Therefore, in order to prevent people from committing criminal acts, there must be negative consequences to counterbalance that universal desire to benefit oneself by harming others.”

    Was it not the historical Buddha Gotama that first put this philosophy forward…? Just saying 😉

  2. 1)It is really hard to read the comments in grey on black.
    2) I agree totally with your ideas BUT I advise refraining from calling the Boston bombings a terrorist act. As the word has been used since 9/11 there are racialized and nationalized meanings that are next-to-impossible to avoid. The war on terror is not fought against British Petroleum or Exxon or against the Ku Klux Klan or The Westboro church, or against loners who send mail bombs or go on killing sprees in elementary schools, even though technically they could and maybe should be. In the US we, via MSM and the State, subliminally, if not overtly, think of a terrorist as a Middle Eastern brown skinned man. We may not want to, or mean to, but the image has been implanted, and there it rests. So I’d advise, suggest, plead, that you call this incident a bombing, a mass murder, or something, anything, other than a terrorist attace.

    • Brava, Liza! One small tweak, though: Observationally speaking, it was a bombing. In order to introduce the horrific element of lack of (direct) provocation, call it a random, unexpected bombing. It was NOT a “mass” murder.

    • Indeed. Labels are extremely powerful…even for those aware of them. Just because the media as well as Obama declared the bombing a terrorist attack does not make it so in the technical sense of the word. Surely any attack is terrifying but that is not the definition. There are neither suspects or clear motives at this point, yet people are jumping to conclusions or just assuming that any attack is a terrorist attack. If that is the case, then Chicago is full of are other cities.

    • but isn’t it up to us to give words their correct meaning instead of complying with doublespeak? To me a terrorist is not a middle-eastern brown skinned man.

  3. A War on Terror is a bit like the Self trying to rid the Self of the Self……..Damn impressive for someone who is not the Self…..but, impossible nonetheless.

  4. It’s not about ridding ourselves of fear (that would be impossible)… the trick is to regard our fear as merely temporary confusion… and once that’s seen, the fear loses out and no longer holds us hostage. In this way, our fear becomes our best friend.

  5. A very wise perspective beyond the dominance of the ego-mind which is the presiding paradigm. We are so much more than fear.

  6. This is great in theory. I truly believe his points are valid. So the problem is obvious. But in reality, how do you begin? Does the author propose to leave his door to his house unlocked every night? To live in a society with no security at all? Where is the line separating what we should freely trust and what we should forcefully secure, and how do you draw it?

  7. Charles, there are many justice systems and the system which results in redemption and compensation might be amongst the most worthwhile.
    I think the doable part is the meeting between the perpetrator and the families.

  8. Charles…thank you for this essay, but I couldn’t finish it. The black background and white letters is extremely straining on the eye. I hope you will consider another format!

  9. Charles Eisenstein rejects any narrative that isn’t mainstream media as a conspiracy theory. Boston has all the hallmarks of false flag terrorism and we can go all the way back to the Gulf of Tonkin, USS Liberty and 9/11 to see how public opinion is manipulated by string pullers of government.

    • Dear Charles (Eisenstein): –

      Mr. Frith is unfortunately on target with respect to the truth of this event, it is obvious beyond the pale, and this is ironically why so many refuse to believe….

      Charles (E): Your work is magnificent, you are an amazing soul, and absolutely one of the new pioneers of the more beautiful world our hearts tell us is possible. But Charles, please my friend, research the truth of what is happening in our world. So many (hundreds of millions) do not want to hear the truth of what is happening: Sandy Hook, Boston, Aurora, 9/11, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc – as Mr. Frith mentions. This is TRUTH. And just my 2 cents: We CANNOT get to that more beautiful world if we FIRST refuse to acknowledge the truth of our existing reality.

      Decades ago German citizens were ridiculed for even daring to believe in the atrocities that were occuring in their backyard, courtesy of their own government. They were the “conspiracy theorists” of their time – ostracized, persecuted and even killed. It seems, sadly nothing has changed. We in the once free country called America are so conditioned to believe what we hear on the “news”, and refuse to believe that we are being lied to by the millionaires, billionaires and trillionaires who run the show. And we have been conditioned to attack those that try to speak the truth, as acknowledgement of this same truth often leads to the ferociously painful destruction of beliefs and belief systems we have held as sacred truths our entire lives. Personally, I know it has for me….

      I suspect, as I write this, it might sting a bit, particularly in contrast to the “beautiful remarks” of the other commentors who speak to love, possibility, and this new world. Know that I am there too with all of you, but I simply REFUSE to entertain a notion of this more magnificent world without FIRST being willing to acknowledge the TRUTH of our existing reality.

      As Gandhi said, “When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it–always.” Note: he speaks to the power of not love alone, but TRUTH AND Love.

      There can be no truth without love, nor love without truth.

      – CGF

        • Hey Juice, indeed I had read this article before way back when (I assume you mean the one titled, “Synchronicity, Myth, and the NWO” on Reality Sandwich). In a recent re-read of it, and referencing this most recent article by Charles (Cycle of Terror), I would say that I particularly resonate with the comments made by in response to Charles’ article. Check it out if you’re interested….

          On “conspiracy theories”, I’ve lost count of the number of times Charles uses the world Conspiracy as if it’s the plague. Millions in the hive also use it to stigmitize others, super unfortunate. I am proud to be a conspiracy theorist, or as I like to call it a “critical thinker”. Remember when people used to think critically? How the hell, I repeat, how the hell did we get to a point in this inside out, upside down world where ANY AND EVERY OFFICIAL STORY FROM OUR GOVERNMENT IS CONSIDERED THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH and anything else is considered a conspiracy theory? WTF??? How did we get here? Where does that inverted rationale come from? Is it a law of physics I am not aware of? Oh, and by the way, isn’t a conspiracy theory by definition that whereby two or more people conspire to do X, Y or Z? By that definition, the government’s story is a conspiracy theory itself: Osama Bin Laden conspired with Al-Quaida to carry out 9/11.Did I miss something?

          I weep on a daily basis for those who continue to accept anything and everything that comes from our fearless “benevolent” leaders as the gospel truth, almost as if it was spoken by God himself. Again, WTF? Oh, and one last point on this: Does ANYONE see something a wee bit off, just a tad, with the fact that hundreds of our politicians, the, cough cough servants of the people (big grin), ya know, the ones that are the authors of the “official” stories”, i.e. truth, are now full-fledged multi-multi-multi-millionaires, literally getting wealthier by the minute, the CEOs that are destroying our lives and our planet are multi-billionaires, and the bankers that, may just, perhaps might just be up to no good and just might be (here it goes…) conspiring to …… are now multi-TRILLIONAIRES and most of the rest of us, the majority of the planet are working 2-3 minimum wage jobs JUST TO PAY THE BILLS. Anything just a wee wee wee bit off here? Isn’t there a Bilderberg meeting, which brings together all these millionaire politicians, billionaire CEOs and trillionaire bankers into one venue every year, and has since the 50’s? And isn’t it absolutely off limits (heavily armed security, etc.) to anyone else – including media or anyone, period no exceptions? Am I dreaming all of this? Does this yearly meeting take place in a parallel universe I’m not aware of? Sorry, there I go again – spewing out those conspiracy theories. Just all coincidences I’m sure and certainly nothing to worry about…..

          Now, if we want to step it up a notch and enter the quantum world (which I dig by the way), a nice comment was made by : in this same Reality Sandwich article, making an analogy to the twin towers getting hit by the planes and the double split experiment (quantum mechanics and infinite possibilities….). Yes, again I dig it (check it out if you wish), but here’s the gist: In our current interation of humanity wherein we are still pretty much operating out of a 5-sense reality, significantly cut off from who we truly are (spiritual beings having a human experience): -‘junk’ DNA, vacant pineal gland, yadayada….. Can we NOW -today – really live life like this? In other words, for example, I’m walking down the street and my girlfriend gets hit in the head by a guy with a bat, who then proceeds to steal her wallet. Do I turn to her and say, “Well dear, you may have gotten struck by a bat, you may have gotten your wallet stolen, but maybe these events did not in fact happen. Yes, I understand you are bleeding profusely from the ears, but let’s assume for a moment you aren’t – let’s just get up and keep walking, don’t mind that blood pouring from your ears, for it is just one possibility of an infinite number of possibilities”. Do you see what I mean here? At some point, prior to any possible ascension, major rise in consciousness, etc. we are still all here in our human experience, living out our lives. Can we really & realistically operate on a daily basis from this quantum level-theory perspective?

          Wow, another long response. Phew…..You’ll forgive me, I’m tired of fighting this battle. I (and perhaps many of you???) just want to live out our lives with a meager existence, loving others, helping others and I (we???) are simply tired beyond belief at having our lives destroyed by . . . something. Remember Occupy? Anyone wonder why there was such a brutal crackdown on a couple of hundred simple souls who were simply trying to break away from the system – and NOT trying to force this new possibility upon any others? You do, I hope, see what we’re up against. Again, something, call it what you will…..something is brutally preventing dairy farmers from selling raw milk, something is brutally preventing organic gardners from gardening, something is brutally preventing alternate currency proponents from moving forward with alternate currencies etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. Do I need to list them all?

          In summary, “something” is doing everything it can to brutally prevent us from realizing, in Charles’ words, that more beautiful world our hearts tell us is possible. How far back do we want to go on accepting the fact that this force has been in existence for eons. Well, let’s just go back a few decades – the 60’s generation, John Lennon, JFK, RFK, MLK, All the beautiful souls and movements who/that tried to change the world, all taken out. Isn’t anyone else tired of fighting? Isn’t anyone else tired of simply rinseing (sp) and repeating, trying to simply walk away from a world of separation, and trying to build this more beautiful world, but being BRUTALLY REFUSED the opportunity E-V-E-R-Y-T-I-M-E? Will it ever end? Will we EVER EVER EVER realize that more beautiful world, and if we do, does anyone really think it will come as a result of us refusing to confront our current reality with truth?

          Put another way, might anyone envision a future world we are all living in peace and harmony, finally after eons and eons of struggle, and we are reflecting back to the old world of separation – the one where way back in 2001 we’re telling the “story” to our grandchildren of how nineteen muslims hijackers had …..

          As a spiritual being living out this human experience, I personally don’t want to live in a world of love founded on lies, I want a world of love anchored to truth. That being said, I suspect each and eveyone of us will have to define our own truth for ourselves and then be able to defend this same truth.

          • And finally, from the mouth of JFK himself (1961 speech):

            “The word secrecy is repugnant in a free and open society, and we are as a people, inherently and historically opposed to Secret societies, secret oaths and secret proceedings. For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless CONSPIRACY, that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence. It depends on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific, and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published, its mistakes are buried, not headlined, and its dissenters are silenced, not praised, no expenditure is questioned, no secret revealed… I am asking your help in the tremendous task of informing and alerting the American people.”

            I guess he was a conspiracy theorist as well, or perhaps more aptly, was he just the last honest president who tried to warn us about it decades and decades ago, but of course no one listened… now we just ridicule and ostracize to death anyone that dares to speak “conspiracies”! Funny, compare JFK’s words to our last president, psychopath-in-chief George W. Bush, who regarding 9/11 said, “We should NOT tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories….”.

            So I ask you – compare JFK’s words with GWB’s words – who was speaking truth and who was speaking lies? Who tried to warn us with truth and who tried to coddle us with lies? Who’s the conspiracy theorist???

  10. as much as you can try to help , i feel as though there is something amiss. your suggestions are good but are just like suggestions of the past . there is a missing piece to your ideas ; the omission of a substantial factor . what is proposed is an adjustment of what already is . maybe if you look deeper but not so deep as to miss the simplest facts , you can discover the keys to the problem . good luck charles and thank you for your efforts . sincerely , dave boyd

  11. As usual, Charles, you can be relied upon to bring some much needed wisdom spoken from the heart into a difficult situation.

    There is a particular fear that you don’t mention that I think often drives the reaction to events such as these. It is the fear of those in government that, if the same sort of thing happens again, they will be blamed. Putting aside the conspiracy theories, most people would not regard it as a failing of the government the first time someone bombs a marathon, but the second time someone does it, everyone will be screeching “why was nothing done?”.

    This fear of being blamed if history repeats itself sets a certain minimum level of response which the government feels it must do (anything done above that level is a choice, and is often piggybacked onto it for other reasons, much as a great deal of the security infrastructure imposed after 9/11 seems to have been designed for purposes other than preventing terrorism…). It’s hard to see how even a totally benevolent government (if such a thing exists) could be persuaded to risk future blame by choosing not to tighten security.

  12. I was simultaneously working as a security consultant to the Federal Reserve Bank and Fortune 100 companies and studying Integral Philosophy and Buddhism when the possibility of writing a paper on “Integral Security” arose. It became clear very quickly that Integral Security would not look like fortifying boundaries and tracking who crosses them, but instead engaging both sides of the divide to engender trust, respect and understanding.

    This hints at why I left the industry after 12 years to start a business called LifeStyle Integrity. Thanks for giving voice to this cycle of abuse. We seem so clear on why children and gangs shouldn’t arm themselves and fight violence with violence and yet fail completely as a country to see how we demand this at every level of government.


  13. Reducing security, as you suggest, Charles, may be the right approach, but what happens when that doesn’t work in reducing terrorism? You say that terrorists want to terrorize us; you say that therefore, if we reduce security measures, the terrorists will be frustrated that they can’t scare us, and will eventually give up. But I don’t think the fact terrorists would quit. They despise us and want us to change or die. The killers in the Marathon bombing had lived in the US for 10 years supposedly. Are you saying that they found this country more repressing or depressing than where they came from? Furthermore, you suggest that these murderers would benefit by sitting down with victims to explain why they did it. They lived in the US for 10 years! They didn’t like it? Then why didn’t they move back to their home? Charles, the weakness of your argument is in implying that US “imperialism” (whatever that is) excuses the slaughter of innocents.

  14. There
    is some truth in this essay. We do need to react less to fear,
    understand that safety is always an illusion and put things in context.
    However some fear is good and rational. We should fear terrorism just
    like we fear fire or other dangerous things. The idea that terrorists
    will leave us alone if we leave them alone is wrong and dangerous. We do
    need to fight force with force and where possible seek justice. Our
    foreign policy and engagement hasn’t been perfect but much of it has
    been necessary and preventative. There are people in this world that
    kill and maim and do not feel bad about it. These people many times feel
    morally justified for doing so.

    also misses a huge point. Our security has been remarkably effective,
    we have stopped almost all the potential attacks. The fact that we can’t
    stop 100% isn’t an argument that we shouldn’t try to stop most.
    Eisenstein argues like he usually does, by distorting the reality-
    basically faking the premise. We do not need to live in a police state
    and part of freedom means vulnerability- it is a small price to pay for a
    free and open society. But it is naive and silly to think that we can
    stop attacks with passivity. Leaders throughout history have make this
    mistake and millions have died because of it.

  15. Beautifully laid out and inspiring as always…
    I’d like to propose to put more emphasis on the fact that we DO need to keep some military control in place as we try to grow into a less fear-based society. Excluding that part and just trying to listen to what “the other” has to say – at the expense of actually standing and protecting our ground – would just lead us to getting rolled over by armies of freedom fighters…

  16. I think the major flaw in this argument can best be spotted in the sentence “Their goal is not to kill people – that is a means, not an end.” This supposition is essentially the foundation for the rest of the argument: if our actions are motivated by love and understanding rather than fear, the terrorist will never achieve his goal. But that supposition also makes the assumption that all terrorists simply want to inspire fear. What if someone simply wants to kill people for the sake of killing people? What if a psychopath’s goal is simply to murder and maim as many as possible? That isn’t ‘terrorism’ in the way the author chooses to use the term, but it is certainly violence and something that should be prevented. The suggestions that the author makes to reverse our slide into fearfulness would also make it easier for such a psychopath to perpetrate violence.

  17. You are impeccable at helping us pick apart parts of our core beliefs that are obsolete. Thank you Charles!

  18. Hi,

    great article. as you may probably be aware, Charles, Israel is exactly such a place. every public place you go to; mall, market, train station, bus station, even some restaurants, have a security guard, and you are required to show the contents of your bag nad go thru a metal detector. that this guard could actually detect something…well, in very remote cases. Israel is a prime example of a country living on (or in) fear…its everywhere you go, and for obvious reasons. just wanted to share that..

  19. You make excellent points, although I disagree on one aspect. We should act out of fear- fear is a healthy emotion whose purpose is to drive us to make ourselves safe. To me, the problem is that we dislike experiencing the emotion so much that we ‘react’ without taking the time to listen to it and fully understand the problem causing the emotion. If we took the time to sit with the fear and properly understand this would lead everyone to take the same road you went on to in the essay- to consider the perspective of those causing the fear, recognise that as humans there is some validity in how they feel (without this justifying their actions) and how best to respond to make everyone safe.

  20. Dear Charles,

    I will quote you in an article I’m about to write on the necessity of a new peace movement. You are quite right that the US is acting on behalf of fear (see NSA surveillance, see NATO enlargement in contrast to promises given to Russia when Germany was reunified). And therefore they create fear and hatred – f.e. in European governments who are under US pressure (with the help of surveillance, media campains, threats….).

    On the situation in English on my website:
    USA and EU – relations
    NSA surveillance and military control

    blessings from Vienna!

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