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These last few days we have been presented with the various forms of madness and obsession that our planetary society seems to encourage.  I say ‘planetary’ to reflect our ongoing integration to a unity much talked about and forecasted but never fully embraced.  Our unity, aided and abetted by the swift communications of the internet and satellite, comes, much to some folks’ dismay I expect, with its own built-in dark side: (1) men who will not stop for a second as they massacre many innocent and defenseless children (2) mothers who will murder all of their own children, (3) solitary jihadists who will threaten the lives of randomly picked restaurant goers to promote the dogmas of their chosen faith, (4) anonymous hackers, likely for hire to the highest bidder, exposing a company’s secrets for all the world to see and halting a goodly portion of its economic activity, (5) a country the size of an empire seemingly brought low by economic sanctions, and perhaps on the verge of an internal collapse, and (6) many countries’ consumers suddenly flush with cash due to the sudden downward price slide of a major resource, oil.

All these events and processes, broadcast around the globe in minutes and sometimes seconds, bring us together in ways one world idealists, in their rush to embrace the brotherhood of man, had not anticipated.  I think that even the minimum of detail supplied to the perpetrators of these recent events in the media, can give us, the audience, a fair idea of, as we say, where they were all coming from, whether it be madness of the traditional personal variety, or the politically inspired ‘David” desire for vengeance against an overwhelming ‘Goliath’ power.  We may not agree with the goals achieved, and may even be appalled at the ruthlessness with which the operations were carried out, but by a combination of worldly intelligence and activated intuition, we can more or less see why the actors engaged so passionately with their goals.

Decades ago we may have endured this process within our own tribe and country, our religious and cultural prejudices preventing us from understanding the same patterns ‘elsewhere’ amongst strange foreigners, but as travel broadens the mind so do the instant communications of digital media, revealing a planet of many languages and cultures, populated by humans with a remarkable similarity of motivations.  You may not like what you see most of the time, and neither do I, but we recognize the replicas of our own past thoughts and emotions.  And when I say ‘past’ I mean anything from hours to centuries.

So when I hear folk say, as I often do, ‘that was me in a past life’, I understand and appreciate the efforts of the early Theosophists as they struggled to bring the concepts of ‘reincarnation’ and ‘karma’ into the general discourse.  They contributed, in their own small way, to the realization of the grand plan for mankind, and as the planet becomes more and more like a village, with gossip bouncing from end to end in minutes, so do we.