The story of the
Love Coins (from the novel Winning
Chapter 12: Lord of Darkness
As we were checking out in the hotel lobby that morning, I was dead tired - tired from the session, tired from the threats, and tired from the lack of sleep. I found it impossible to concentrate on anything for more than just a few seconds without the bone shaking chill setting in again with its dread that drew my attention back to that meeting of the night before. This dreadful feeling had already begun during breakfast. The little bit of peace that I found in the morning when I heard the black man sing, Amazing Grace, in the stillness of dawn on Piazza San Marco, had been overpowered by Palmerston's shadow of death. It seemed so distant now while Palmerston's threats seemed evermore real.
I must have appeared to Sylvia and the others as if I wasn't really there. Sylvia commented in passing that this must have been quite some meeting. If she only knew! I simply nodded. There wasn't enough time to explain the unexplainable. Maybe there would be time later, I thought, in the plane perhaps, as Steve had suggested.
After we had checked out I saw a welcome chance for relief. I noticed Steve vigorously helping a group of elderly people piling their luggage onto a cart that would take it to the bus. I dropped my own bags and rushed over to help them. There was something beautifully human in this simple act of helping another person. I suddenly realized what Steve had really been saying all along when he said, We bring to each other our love to enrich one-another's existence."
We went by bus to Rome. From Rome an Air Force 747 troop carrier took us to Paris, and from there to Miami. The flight going home, away from the sudden 'darkness' of Venice, brought on a feeling as though we were flying first class, even without the fancy meals, music, and champagne. Being in this airplane represented the bright side of our humanity. Also, it seemed ideal to me that we were not in a public place anymore, considering what I had to reveal from the night before.
I handed the tape recorder to Steve without comment. He listened to it for a while, smiled at times, nodded at times, and shook his head now and then. Eventually he gave it back to me.
"This contains nothing more," he said, "than what someone else from the Fondi Empire had already told me some years earlier at the depopulation conference in Bucharest. I had been warned there by a group of the empire's people, a group similar to what these fondi are, who made it plain that their empire was determined to break up all the other empires in the world, whereby they would achieve total control, and with it, an effective population reduction in order to maintain this control. What they really meant to say to me then, was that they wanted to isolate and separate people from one-another as a means for gaining control over them and over the whole world. Breaking up empires, meant breaking up the big nation-states, thereby stripping the people of the power to determine their own destiny. This meant destroying all opposing states by whatever means possible."
From the Chapter 13: Lord of the Rings
"How far we are to the end of the battle cannot be determined," said Steve, then laughed at Ross. "The end is certain, my friend," he said. "The end is as certain as the return of the Ice Age is, because the present interglacial period ends. We are already in the boundary zone. For two million years the Earth has been gripped by a major ice age that gets interrupted every hundred thousand years with a ten-thousand-year warm spell. If that reality drifts into people's thinking a new era will begin to dawn. Palmerston's Illuminati will become exposed by their soon to be recognized self-evident lies. While they have been able to put mankind asleep mentally with the clutter of their lies, that are impotent to halt the dynamics of the cycles inside the sun and its interaction with universe that determine the climate on earth. The present warm period will end according to the dynamics of these processes, no matter what Palmerston's Illuminati crow to the contrary. These huge long-term cycles have gone on for two million years already, and there is nothing that anyone can do to stop them. No one can change the principles that govern the cycles of the sun and the universe, or hold back their effects. We can only bring our world into conformity with them by which we can continue to live and maintain a rich civilization. Of course we don't know when the recognition will dawn that this is our only option to survive, just as we don't know the exact moment in advance when the last wall of our precious Helms-Deep-fortress might come down that lays the scene open to mankind's final war that will end the world of men in minutes. In Tolkien's saga Gandalf didn't intervene at Helms Deep until literally the last moment. If he hadn't, the remaining battle would have been over in minutes. Saruman would have won. The world of men would have ended. Tolkien leaves the fate of mankind hanging on a fine thread, and then gives us the victory with a profound new dawn. The glowing spark that opens the horizon to an Ice Age Renaissance may give us this breakout from an otherwise hopeless situation."
Ross agreed that Steve was probably right.
Steve turned to me and smiled. "Does this New Hope take the sting out of your ordeal with Palmerston last night?" he said moments later. "I am saying that while we can't change the universe, we do have the resources within us to get us out of the mess that we have created on earth. Sure, we've messed up royally, Peter. We've boxed ourselves in, into a prison that literally assures our doom. But stepping away from Palmerston opens up the brightness of a potential new day."
"Don't take our victory for granted," Ross cautioned Steve. "There is nothing certain in this contest of gargantuan forces, except one element. The only certainty in the entire scene is that we won't have a victory, if we don't fight for it. If we say, yes, to Palmerston, the world is lost."
Here I began to laugh. "After Palmerston ran away without a handshake he had second thoughts about his position and came back. I told Palmerston that his empire is a paper tiger."
"You pinned the eye of Sauron on him," said Steve, "that is a ring of fire with an empty center."
"You told him to go back to his sewer and bother you no more," said Ross. "You told him that he lives in a world of fading dreams. Tolkien couldn't have handled him any better."
"I made his empire look so small that there wasn't enough left for a handshake over it," I interjected. "Can this be classified as fighting?"
"No, it doesn't count for anything," said Ushi, who had been listening to music until Ross got into the act. "It doesn't count, because you were fighting against something, instead of for something. If the fondi are a paper tiger, why would you fight them? Your fight has to begin with yourself to uplift yourself to be at peace in the presence of the paper tiger. Then you stand on the platform of truth and fight for your humanity and all humanity, including his humanity. That's what it means to step out of the box. In Tolkien's tale all the great battles that were fought were defensive battles fought furiously against the forces of evil to hold them back. While these battles had to be fought, they didn't bring victory, did they? The victory in the saga was won by the two people that weren't fighting AGAINST something. The victory was won by Frodo and his friend who were fighting FOR humanity and for all the good and beautiful in the world. By this victory all the huge battles, which had been secondary battles, simply ended. World War One and World War Two had been such secondary battles, as is the Cold War now. Nothing has been won by them. Nor will these battles end until the fight is redirected from mankind struggling against evil to society fighting for its humanity, to uplift it, and to envelop it with love and the love for all that is good and beautiful in the world."
Steve nodded and smiled. "I know that we have the capacity to do this," said Steve. "Our piggy bank of love coins can serve us as a training tool to develop this capacity. We must utilize it as a learning tool. Ideally it would always be empty. The coins we put in, we should spend immediately to enrich the world. If we don't utilize this tool as a resource, we will end up like the ancient Romans did, who created themselves an impasse when they chose to become an empire. They never got out of their rut, by which they were doomed. They never spent a penny out of the piggy bank, provided they had one. The piggy bank, which I am proposing, could have saved them. It had been offered to then several times, and each time they smashed it. Let's be more generous with ourselves, Peter," said Steve and laughed.
"So, what should we call our piggybank then?" I asked minutes later as our real world seemed to merge in my mind with Tolkien's world. "Do you mean it to be a training tool to make us all more hobbit-like?"
"Call it anything you like," said Steve and laughed, "but get it started, and get it started big. Nothing else is evidently even remotely important, compared to that. Every single recognition of the value of our universal humanity that comes alive in your experience, forges a coin for that bank. The more profound that recognition is and the grander the love, the higher will be the principle that comes to light and the closer will our perceptions and actions correspond with the truth. Thus, the more golden our 'coins' will become that we forge and put into our piggy bank day by day."
"It's all symbolic, of course," I interjected, "just as Tolkien's tale is highly symbolic in every aspect."
"Right Peter," said Steve. "But as a symbol our piggy bank is absolutely essential, is it not? There is a lot of humanist character-development going on in Tolkien's saga. We too, need this development. We need it badly Peter, and we need it in real terms and on a universal scale. Universal love can power this development and draw our humanity to the foreground as in the case of the hobbits. Tolkien's hobbits represent society as it is in its native design, where the Principle of Universal Love is established. That's the decisive factor."
"It leaves a big hole when it is missed," I pointed out to Steve.
Steve nodded and sighed. "Yes Peter, Tolkien warns us about that. He warns us about all the black coins that the Fondi Empire distributes, representing the currency of its Illuminati. Each type of Palmerston's black coins is represented in Tolkien's saga. The Cashi coins that are minted by their private central bankers and in the name of Adam Smith's fascism of greed are represented in the saga by the Gollum. The coins of the Terrorist Illuminati, minted by the Nazi synarchists goulish beasts, are represented by the Nazguls as the name implies, that ride on wings, that hold society in its claws, mesmerized. Other black coins are minted by the religious Fundamentalist Illuminati that Palmerston calls his gentle giants. They are presented in the saga by all those who were once men, but are no longer, like Denethor and all the ghostly creatures in the world of shadows. Even the coins of the Environmental Illuminati are represented in the saga, minted by those in the land of Mordor that comes to light as an utterly barren land where not a blade of grass grows and food and water are not in the landscape. In contrast the green lands are found in the hobbits' world, far from the imperial realm. There life is rich and food is grown in abundance. Tolkien forces society to take note of the fondi's black coins, and to hold them in contrast with the golden coins by which we discover in love our humanity and its great value."
Steve paused and took a zip of the orange juice that was provided for free on the airplane on a self-help basis. "Yes, Peter, we have to become more hobbit-like," Steve continued. "Frodo's love was rich in golden coins on the universal scale. We are not up this level yet. Right now our coins are rather tinny and hollow in that respect. Somebody said to me once that we cry all over the world, 'God bless America,' and the British cry, 'God save the Queen,' or 'God save the Empire.' And the Germans cry, 'Germany, Germany, above everything!' That's the sentiment that all the anthems in the world proclaim. That has got to stop, Peter! No one even whispers today, 'God bless humanity.' No one even thinks in terms of protecting mankind, much less developing and enriching one another on the universal scale with the substance of our humanity. There are no gold coins forged as yet, at least not many. Is there anyone in the world who proclaims that the principle of common defense, which we have in the Preamble of our Constitution, is really a universal principle that applies to the whole of humanity, individually and collectively? Who recognizes that? Who is absolutely committed to that in an utterly sublime manner? Not many, I'm sure. When we see a new Hitler rise to the helm in America, or Germany, or anywhere, that rising should trigger immediate defensive responses on a universal scale, because the rise of the beastmen should be considered an attack on humanity. It is so seen in Frodo's environment where it causes an immediate response in defense of all humanity. But do we see this happening in our current world, Peter? Nothing is happening. Society says nay to its self-defense, if it says anything at all. And so its road to victory is blocked. That's where we're at, Peter."
Steve took a deep breath. "It is the business of China, Peter, to provide for the common defense against the agents of the Fondi Empire, as well as the business of India and Norway, and every single nation on the planet," Steve continued and sighed. The sigh was obviously caused by frustration. "We shouldn't let ourselves become discouraged, though, "he continued. "There should be no cause for discouragement when the solution is so simple. This whole problem wouldn't be a problem if the people of the world could draw from their piggybank of human values in rich measure. But we are not there yet, Peter. The principle of the common defense is not even on the agenda right now, because society is bankrupt. Still, it can be made the agenda. Society can set up for itself a piggy bank for its love coins. Sauron's ring of beast-men values has clogged up almost the entire human system and put us in a rut, but we can work ourselves out of that rut if we utilize the resources that we have as human beings. Sauron's ring isn't a ring of power, Peter. As I said, it is a ring of impotence, caused by the corruption of lies. Everyone of the beast-men philosophers that the ring combines, from Aristotle to Nietzsche and beyond, are philosophers of human impotence, and they all employ the process of inducing corruption with lies, centered on impotence. Tolkien evidently knew this. He is telling us that this Sauron threat is the greatest threat that humanity is facing, because it puts us asleep as human beings. That's where Palmerston's power is rooted. Tolkien had no choice but to outline a universal defense against this threat. And this is what he did. When his leader of the men of Rohan became ensnared with Sauron's deadly impotence, Tolkien sent the wisest of the wise, the most sublime consciousness, the white wizard Gandalf, to awake him from his dream. And later, when this same leader of the people of men became again by a lingering sense of smallness in the face of Empire, he became ensnared with a sense of impotence again. In the shadow of this pathetic sense of impotence he led his entire kingdom into the trap of the fortress of Helms Deep that would subsequently become besieged by the beast-men that left the people no escape open. Tolkien had to bring in the combined forces of the whole of humanity, to crush the beast-men's siege, and to block their invasion of the fortress, who stood poised for the final reach for the throat of mankind. So let's not belittle Palmerston's power built on the corruption of humanity. Tolkien gave himself no choice at this stage in the saga, but to decisively deal with the destruction of the ring that Saruman and his forces represented. Tolkien illustrates that only a decisive awakening of humanity can save the day at this stage. Nothing less would have been sufficient, or is so now. That is where're are at. We're stuck in our own Helms Deep, facing a hundred million Hiroshimas. In the saga Tolkien marshaled the widest range of good that humanity represents, from dwarf to king, from wizard to the elf, to protect the world of men, and thereby the bearer of the ring, which is humanity itself on its epic journey to invalidate the ring that represents our impasse. Thus, Tolkien brings the strength of the whole of humanity, collectively as one, all coming together laterally from across the world, into the battle at Helms Deep to save the day."
Steve suggested that Frodo the hobbit represents individually the wide sea of humanity as a model for a humanity of human beings. "He represents society," said Steve. "He represents all of us. He challenges us all to be sublime, as did Franklin Roosevelt, as does Lyndon LaRouche who has become a long-standing 'American institution' in this fight to advance the development of mankind economically, scientifically, culturally, and socially."
"Frodo's fight was positive. He was fighting FOR something, not AGAINST something," Ushi repeated. "He wasn't fighting against a corrupting force, even a paper tiger, but was fighting FOR his humanity, and our humanity, and its power to be free from corruption, and to lift itself above it, and thereby disable the corruption in the flow of it. That's something that only a human being can do."
"This appears to be not quite enough," Steve replied. "Tolkien takes the process one step further and introduces the principle which is absolutely essential if the ring of fascism and greed is ever to be invalidated. He takes it to a higher level, to the level of the sublime, to the level of the Principle of Universal Love. Jeanne d'Arc illustrated what is sublime. She would sooner die by being burnt alive at the stake than denounce the Principle of Universal Love that has become her life."
"That takes her one step beyond the principle of the common defense of humanity and the common good," said Ushi. "The common defense is necessary for mankind to deal with the consequences of its collective failure in eradicating the ring of fascism and greed. Those consequences will always be with us for as long as the ring of fascism and greed exists in the world. There will always be another war and another greater calamity until the underlying failure is overcome. Mankind will remain trapped into its submission to imperial, vertical power for as long as the sophistry of fascism and greed holds society spellbound. But Jeanne d'Arc was aiming for a higher level defense. She cut through this crap of responding in endless submission or mere defense. She took steps to change the world with her sublimity that came to light as a new kind of power, the lateral power that elevates human beings to a higher sense of humanity, giving one power over oneself to shed the garments of apathy, impotence, fear, and self-denial. She took away society's 'black' garments, the garment's of Sauron's Nazguls, and replaced them with the 'sun.' She honored the precious humanity of mankind by paving the way to the founding of the first nation-state on the planet, mankind's first political step away from imperial slavery.
"Tolkien required the same devotion to the sublime of us," Steve continued, "and he required it as much from the noblest wizard as he did from the smallest of humanity, represented by Frodo. And still, he demanded more. Tolkien understood something that few people seem to want to understand today, that we all live in this world together. If we don't built this world together into a richly human place where we can live productively and securely in support of one-another, we will all go to hell together, the hell that we let unfold by default. Tolkien seems to have understood that fascism and greed are not aspects of humanity that are substantial in themselves in their gory brutality, but are nothing more than the resulting emptiness that one finds when there is a void of humanity. Tolkien illustrates the void with his Nazgul creatures, black-glad and without a face, which he said were once men but were 'corrupted' by the ring and doomed to serve its purpose. Tolkien lived in a time when great swarms of Nazgul extended their death across Europe in the uniforms of the black clad Nazi Ghouls."
"The ring saga gives us an image of ourselves," said Ushi. "If gives us an image in Frodo of how we would act as human beings should we choose to do so, or how we would act if we would not choose so and live like empty shells. Right now mankind is collectively empty, bankrupt, and on the fast train to hell, since almost nobody gives a damn about humanity. Nor is society committed to act like human beings. Isn't that also what Palmerston said in exposing what is giving him his power? He has every right to laugh at us when he said, 'and you want to change that?' His fondi empire didn't build the 65,000 nuclear bombs that now stand arrayed against mankind. Mankind itself built them. His empire merely placed the order. Tolkien demanded the opposite. He demanded absolute sublimity of his key representatives of mankind, but that's easy to do if you write the script. Palmerston would have laughed at Frodo the same way he had laughed at you, Peter."
"Of course he would have to laugh," Ross interjected. "Only a gnawing sense of impotence could have prevented Frodo from succeeding. That's why Palmerston laughed at you, to inspire impotence. Tolkien wisely kept 'Frodo' out of Palmerston's reach. He gave Frodo a task to do that was not of his choosing, but was a necessity for maintaining life. Without the voice of impotence holding him back, Frodo complied. Tolkien plugged Frodo out of his idyllic pastoral world with a task so dangerous that no assurances could be given. Nevertheless he felt certain that Frodo was equal to the task. Frodo was assured that there would be no survival for anyone, if he failed. We are at this stage today. We are building atomic bombs, while we should be building the infrastructure for survival that will be our lifeline in the coming Ice Age. Instead of massive building going on, we see massive looting, pillaging, enslaving, and destroying, tearing one-another down. Society calls those who dare to speak against that, dangerous crackpots, because war, poverty, and destruction is the stuff that empires are built on, and society is trained to protect the empires. Frodo the hobbit doesn't have the power to stand against that deep reaching sophistry, nor is he drawn into battle with it. He only knows his humanity and that it is sufficient to carry the ring to its doom. So he presses on, struggling silently and persistently and wins. Whether the global society can live up to his sublime example remains yet to be seen. The potential exists, but nothing is assured."
"Tolkien demands total sublimity on a universal scale and warns that our survival cannot be assured without it," said Steve. "The only tool that we have to make this survival a reality is our piggy bank," added Steve addressing me, "and nothing must go into it that isn't 'gold' and radiant in brilliance like the 'sun' manifesting the Principle of Universal Love."
"Right now we are miles away from the realization of this goal," I commented quietly, as if in shame. Indeed, that's what Palmerston had promised, a feeling of shame.
"While Palmerston is impotent in real terms," I said moments later, "he has his hands on the pulse of mankind. His empire owns mankind, but his people are insane, and in their insanity they may yet destroy the world. The Nazgul and their derivatives are all insane. Greed is insanity. Fascism is insanity. The Nazgul stand ready to destroy mankind. The physical forces to do this do exist. This means that we cannot stay asleep but must act in a sublime manner as Frodo did act and take the responsibility that we all have, to become human beings."
"In comparison with this great challenge my piggy bank appears to be rather empty," said Steve and laughed. "In fact, I don't even have a piggy bank sitting on my bedroom dresser to remind me every night."
"Don't lie to yourself," Ushi interrupted him. "Your piggy bank is rich with golden coins of universal love. You are the world champion of the piggy banks of love coins. You became the world champion the night when you invited Peter into our home for dinner. We talked about love for hours that night, forging coin after coin, and when it became obvious that a deep love was unfolding between Pete and I, you didn't send Pete packing in a huff as any husband would, but invited him to stay, to stay for the whole night. You gave up your own bed to him and invited him to share the night with me, pending my approval. You were pouring forth that night from your piggy bank in rich streams. But that wasn't all. You told us in the morning that you ended up with twice as many coins by the process of spending them so freely. That's the geometry of universal love that you have discovered. That makes you the world champion."
"Oh, I discovered you two being in love long before I invited Pete," said Steve and grinned. "That's why I invited him. I could see the face of God shining in both of you."
"A sublime act isn't sublime, for reasons that the sublime person often ends up dead as did Jeanne d'Arc," said Ross. He was still poking his head over the back of his seat in front of us. "The sublime is that which creates a richer world out of the riches of a love that is wide and universal," he said. "Jeanne d'Arc did such a thing. She set the stage for the first nation state in history, built on the renaissance principles that stand in total defiance of all imperial impositions. This, all by itself, doubled the prosperity of the entire nation under Louis XI."
"Actually Jeanne d'Arc did much more than that," said Steve. "Sure she rallied the flagging forces of Charles VII against the English occupiers in France, in 1429. Yes she was personally leading the troops to break the siege of Orléans, paving the way to have Charles VII officially crowned king. But that was only the start. She was sold by traitors to the English, who burned her at the stake for heresy and perjury, two years after her victory. But those flames that took her life also fanned the fire of the great humanist unfolding that became the Golden Renaissance. In the wake of Jeanne d'Arc the renowned Christian humanist Cardinal Nicolaus of Cusa came onto the scene who played a major role in the 1439 Council of Florence that unified the Eastern and Western Churches and put the human being and truth above the institutions. That's what essentially opened to door to the new era that became the Renaissance. Cusa's collaborators were all part of the effort to ensure the realization of the renaissance idea. Their work came to fruition in Louis XI's reign. King Louis XI reigned in France for slightly over twenty years from 1461 on and put on record in this short period the modern form of the nation-state principle. I think the new form of kingdom was called the commonwealth, in which the nation's wealth is its productive capacity for the common benefit of the whole of society. This renaissance platform next spread from France to England. All within the same twenty year timeframe. Jeanne d'Arc played a key role in this historic development of a sublime idea."
"In her early years, Jeanne d'Arc got caught up in the simmering resistance movement against the looting of society by the Aristocracy," said Ross. "The reform movement was centered on the Brotherhood of the Common Life, a kind of early general welfare idea. From this rebel background Jeanne d'Arc was able to approach the Dauphin, Charles VII, and convince him to supply her with the needed military forces to regain France's sovereignty and independence."
"Jeanne d'Arc didn't invent the resistance movement," said Steve. "That movement had been slowly gathering strength for almost fifty years. Out of it a quiet political and religious revolution had been unfolding in northern Europe in an effort to rebuild the moral, physical, and spiritual well being of the people of Europe against the memory of the Black Death. The Brotherhood of the Common Life became a teaching order built on this general welfare background and the scientific tradition of Plato. The Brotherhood of the Common Life was committed to educating all people universally, regardless of their wealth or status. The Brotherhood became a cultural resistance movement that spread throughout Europe, opposing the looting of the oligarchs whose survival was dependent on impoverishing the population that they treated no better than the cows in the field. The teaching order was fighting for humanity, rather than fighting an oppressor. It stressed the value of every individual, setting the stage for the Principle of Universal Love as love reflecting the face of God in every human face.
"That, more or less, was the outcome of the process that Jeanne d'Arc stood in the middle of and fought for," added Steve. The renaissance that unfolded from that in France and later in England might not have come about without Jeanne d'Arc's crucial contribution."
"That's why I would give her the title of world-champion of the piggy bank of love coins," said Ross and laughed.
"Tolkien's Jeanne d'Arc is Arwen, isn't she?" said Ushi. "Arwen has the same effect, though in a different manner. Tolkien created Arwen to illustrate a unique element of the sublime. Arwen is the daughter of the elves, an immortal, but she chooses a mortal life for the love of a man that is destined to be king, the man Aragorn, a wanderer in exile who has long given up believing in the royalty of the human being. Aragorn searches for something, not knowing what. Arwen however, sees in him what he can't see himself and offers her love and support to bring the lost treasure to the foreground. She falls in love with the royalty of his humanity that outshines the fading light of the elven-folk's endless immortality in time. She finds in the royalty of Aragorn's humanity a new and brighter immortality, which she fully embraces at all cost. Her father might have reminded her that those costs are huge, giving up immortality. But she might have said that the price is small for gaining a higher sense of immortality that she can't find without paying the price. She declares by her action that living in endless time is empty in itself without the love that raises one to still higher ground, to the royalty of universal love, the gold of our humanity. Storytellers suggest that she bestows to Aragorn a symbol of her love, who over time discovers his royalty as a human being. In the end both are united as king and queen of the new realm of Gondor, the New World of men after Frodo's victory. It seems that Tolkien wanted to teach us something about the nature of those love coins that are a part of us, and with them help us find our sublimity."