The Debt Ceiling Crisis – A Lesson In Spirituality?

Via Tom Grasso (Gyandeva)
on Jul 29, 2011
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While others are digging in to the ideological positions I have been simply watching.  While some are calling each other names and suggesting that the “sky is falling” I have been stuck in observation mode simply taking it all in.

Now that ends.  I have seen enough.

I am left rather exasperated by the sheer infantile behavior of our political leaders and pundits stuck in their ideological camps. They are rolling around in their ideas of what is “right,” like swine rolling around the mud in their pigsties. It’s like watching elementary school bullies pick on each other until one goes home crying.  It simply is insanity at its worst.

For instance, allow me to paraphrase a conversation recently overheard on Capitol Hill:

The Hobbit (Source

Sen. McCain: “Tea Party members are like hobbits.”

Congressman Rand Paul: “Oh yeah, but you’re a troll.”

Sen. McCain: “This is the kind of crack political thinking that turned Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell into GOP Senate nominees.”

Um, excuse me kids, but don’t you have a job to do?

While I may agree with McCain, wasn’t he the one who gave us all Sarah Palin?  I mean isn’t there something I heard once about those in glass houses throwing stones?

You betcha!

Now I don’t want to belabor the points that ideologues have presented countless times already on the issue.  Between the endless news stories, tweets, Facebook updates, and forum posts I have read it is very clear to me.  The points everyone is raising aren’t the cure, they are part of the problem here.  Things like the debt crisis are not problems, they are a symptom of a much larger disease.

The Diagnosis

"Calling Dr. Moe, Dr. Larry, Dr. Shemp" (Source

We are infected with a condition I term “human stupidioitis”.  When I first used that term, I realized that I was saying “human stupid-eee-oh-itis”, but now realize that I was missing a consonant there.  It should be “human stupid-idiot-itis,” since that’s exactly what it is.  We have become a species so addicted to our own ideas that we have redefined the entirety of the universe according to the ideas we have created of what it is.  We have created God into an image of man, we have created pollution as “good”, we have created social responsibility as “redistribution of wealth” and we have created greed as a “gauge of success” (just to name a few).

I will leave it “human stupid-eee-oh-itis” for now.  It just sounds so much more “medical” since it is nearly impossible to spell and to say correctly.

What is This Condition?

Modern man became what he thinks he is (notice the italics) today largely because of his frontal lobe (sorry opposable thumbs, but you aren’t the main reason we dominate the Earth).  Our frontal lobes have allowed us to do all kinds of things, from pondering “what am I?” to finding cures for medical conditions to finally realizing that there is no money in a cure while riches await in the treatment.  Our frontal lobes have created not only our abilities to save each other, but to kill each other.  Yes, our frontal lobes have helped us truly understand what we think we are, and have given us ideas not only on who we are

Now, where did I leave my wallet?

but also on who everyone else should be.

Therein lies the root of the disease.  The frontal lobe, to me, is an “idea creator”.  I bet we didn’t have one when residing in Eden.  In fact, we were so “idea-less” that it took a snake to have one for us and once Adam and Eve ate of the apple “wham-oh!!” there it was.  It seems our first idea, if you believe the story of Genesis, was that our genitals were horrible and needed to be covered.  So we covered them.  It’s been all downhill from there.

In fact, I believe that if we all took off our clothes right now we would all be back in Eden.  Just kidding…

I was recently asked what I believed the crux of the Bible was.  I stated that when I shed all ideas that were given to me by my family, friends, acquaintances, clergy, teachers, and books I was left with only one idea that made sense to me.

“The entire Bible has only one moral, and that is that human ideas are harmful while acceptance to what is brings to you to God.”

I was thoroughly ridiculed on that one.  I had made the statement to a group of Christians on an internet forum I frequent.  It was probably the wrong group to suggest that the Bible was not anything other than pure, unadulterated fact.  It turned out to be yet another idea that just smacked me in the face.

When you look at each and every event composing the debt crisis, it seems to mirror every other human crisis in history.  When you look at it simply and without your own ideas you are left with one incontestable truth.  We suffer from a disease of the mind and ideas are its tumors.  Tumors that the mind has become reliant on not only for a sense of identity but also for the creation of what is commonly called “truth”.  This truth, however, lacks any sense of the present moment.  It only knows the present through the past.  In this state of the disease, the present simply cannot exist without the past and therefore cannot stand on its own.  Oddly enough, this condition is not dependent on the individual’s past for life, it also uses the past of everyone else.  We call this condition, ironically enough, “conditioning”.

The Cure

I’d love to tell the world what the cure is.  However, I have learned from my friends in the pharmaceutical world that there is no money in the cure, only in the treatment.  In addition, I obviously have no idea how to cure the pain of ideas.  So allow me to render you a treatment and hope that you will pay me for it. (Yes, I am laughing, and hope you are too.  If not, email me and I will send you a Paypal link.)

Allow me to admit that I realize how idiotic I must sound here.  First, I am presenting an idea (or several) about how harmful ideas are.  Second, I am suggesting that I have no cure, but can provide a treatment.  I have not evolved spiritually enough to follow the wise words of the Tao: “Those who know do not speak.  Those who speak do not know.”  Understandably I am torn on the prognosis as well as my inability to shut up about the disease.

Treatment #1 – Suffering

Most of us avoid suffering like the plague.  Well, we think we do anyway.  In fact, most of us are the creators of the conditions that create suffering even as we do our best to avoid the suffering itself.  We simply ask for it and then feign ignorance when it falls on us like a brick.

In the case of our debt crisis, we have overspent our revenues for at least the last 10 years.  We have ASKED for the debt crisis, and then act not only surprised that we have one but amazed at the consequences.  Now, while most of us want to blame our political leaders, I don’t.  I blame ME.  Why?  Well, I am part of the citizenry that has elected those bozos.  They are in place with their ideas and tactics because I have put them there (“I” is collective here).

We have overspent our revenue.  We have asked for debt under the incorrect assumption that governments MUST operate in the red.  Both political parties (ideas) have done had their hand in this cookie jar, and neither seems to willing to end the insanity.  They are, however, all too willing to end the other guy’s insanity.  The easier of the two, healing thyself, is avoided in favor of the more difficult healing of thy neighbor.  It’s a worldwide problem, and not one I can see as easily cured without the complete and utter collapse of governments, economies and cultures.

This will create suffering because of our unobstructed attachment to all human ideas.  The suffering will lead to an understanding that allows Treatment #2 to be successful.

Treatment #2 – Removal of the Tumors

Meditation - The Surgery

If the mind is the patient, and ideas are the tumors, then meditation is the surgery necessary to separate the tumors from the patient.  Ideas themselves will always be a part of the human mind much like pathogens are always part of the human body, but when we become unattached to those ideas we become free from the disease.  It’s not that the tumors themselves won’t be floating around in our minds, it’s just that we won’t let them take hold and we won’t allow our minds to feed off them.  They will vanish and have little effect on our present moments.

The treatments themselves are quite successful, at least they have been for me.  Even the ideas I present here are not firmly fixed in my thoughts, they are experiences.  Sharing experiences will always have much more truth for me than the sharing of ideas will.  The more present the experience is the more truth I find in it.  Because I can let go of this idea at any time experience provides me with a different one, I am not rooted in that idea and therefore am not “sick” with it.  I can let it go at any time, or not depending on the experience of the present moment.


The doctor states that the patient is critical but that there are glimmers of hope.  The world’s consciousness is shifting, and the collective enlightenment is near.  When I was a young boy, I would often see the Urban Jesus (my name for him) with a sign that said “Repent, the End is Near”.  An idea evolved within me that suggested that “repentance is the end”.  Then I learned that “repentance” involves guilt, shame, remorse” and all kinds of things that made (and make) little sense to me spiritually, so I dove into the idea of repentance as it relates to my human experience.  Now, through my experience, I realize that repentance is the Treatment #1 raised above, with forgiveness being Treatment #2.  It has been my experience that you will not heal without first being injured and then forgiving the injury.  Repentance is the suffering necessary to recognize the tumor, and forgiveness is the surgery that removes it.  You cannot truly heal without going through both treatments.

So, we will eventually suffer for our “human stupidioitis” so that we can recognize the tumors.  We will then have to forgive ourselves and heal.  Perhaps the suffering will create an immunity to the disease, but so far that hasn’t been the case.  I keep hoping that this will be the fever that gets us to the cure, but realize that we are so busy treating the symptom that the cause just keeps festering within us.

The good news here is that you can self-medicate and be cured.

Peace. ☮ ©2011 Thomas P. Grasso All Rights Reserved ☮ ℓﻉﻻ٥ ツ


About Tom Grasso (Gyandeva)

Tom Grasso is a Colorado-based seeker, meditator, blogger (new site), and creative wordsmith. More importantly, he is a father of three (meaning he is also a lecturer, teacher, chef, order taker, taxi driver, coach, mentor and aspirin addict) and has found great joy in sharing his life experience to the benefit of others. Tom is an abuse survivor and a reformed (though unapologetic) bad ass warrior who bares the scars of his adventures and the power of transformation in every word he writes. As a former firefighter and rescue tech, Tom understands the fragility of life and the impermanence of each moment. You can follow Tom on Tumblr , and can find his books on Amazon. You will soon be able to purchase Tom's short stories (and erotica) at Don't forget to like his "blog page" at Tom Grasso, Writer on Facebook.  


23 Responses to “The Debt Ceiling Crisis – A Lesson In Spirituality?”

  1. LOVE it Tom! So brilliantly written and creatively woven. I remember in 2008 when the markets first collapsed and everyone watched in horror, day after day, as one company after the next laid off thousands of people. People were terrified. But I was elated. As insane as that sounds, I knew it was for a greater good. I knew it was the beginning of "the shift". I knew that before we could fully shift our consciousness and start anew, that we had to tear the old institutions and thought-patterns to the ground. I had no way to explain it, but I just knew it. Your article encapsulated so much of what I have felt. Thanks for sharing!

  2. thebalancedrepublic says:

    Sir, please take a look here.

    If you take this article plus some others together, you may find we are working towards similar — maybe not exactly the same — goals. Some of it is eery …

  3. Maire says:

    This is a great article!!! Thank you. I will post this on my blog: It really is time we take a strong stand and create exactly what we want! 🙂

  4. tomgrasso says:

    Thank you!! One can only hope that the shift becomes an earthquake…proverbially speaking of course. 🙂

  5. tomgrasso says:

    Cool site. I work spiritually to bring balance to my life. We seem to be similar in this regard.

  6. tomgrasso says:

    Thanks Maire. I wonder what the next step is frankly…

  7. yogiclarebear says:

    Awesome Tom, you are a wonderful writer!

  8. tomgrasso says:

    Wow, thank you! 🙂

  9. Tom, it is so interesting that you chose the word "Earthquake". Here's why: I live in San Francisco, obvious earthquake zone, but I just finished a Neighborhood Emergency Rescue Team training class with the Fire Dept, in order to be prepared to help when the BIG ONE hits. Something inside of me is telling to prepare, and given the number of big quakes recently, something tells me it's coming. This is going to sound morbid to many, but I also feel a deep insight that all of these quakes, as tragic as they seem on the surface, are also part of the shift. It is part of tearing away the old constructs, literally. And is supposed to help to make humanity see what REALLY matters. So it was interesting indeed that you used that word.

  10. tomgrasso says:

    As evident as that is for you, I can suggest that a million little "earthquakes" happen daily in this world. They just manifest themselves differently. As a firefighter and rescue guy, I see the "quakes", the damaged caused, and the healing process quite a bit. I also see those who manifest themselves in CERTs and response as "peacemakers" who would not exist had the injury not become real.

    You may may right though, the shift in perception may be helped along by the earth's tremors. When we realize that we are relatively small in the physical sense but absolutely powerful-beyond-words in the metaphysical sense, perhaps we will want to start paying a bit more attention to the part of us where true power lies? Just curious, but what would YOU do with that kind of power?

  11. Funny you should ask… I´m already doing it. I'm currently working on a book about the power of positive thinking and I've started a somewhat accidental movement of peace, love and positivity across the world on my English/Spanish FB pages.. Spreading the light.. .

  12. tomgrasso says:

    Oddly enough, I had typed "and after looking at your Facebook page, I can see what you are doing!" but didn't hit "submit" (got called to a working fire that put me out for about 3 hours).

    It's awesome to see ideas rooted in the present moment become true questions to the Universe.

  13. Melanie says:

    Enjoyed your article. Please keep up the good work. I will look forward to more.

  14. tomgrasso says:

    Thanks Melanie, I will. Peace.

  15. Rodd says:

    Wow, my mind was blown a little bit there. I'm going to have to meditate on this article awhile because you have eloquently stated several things I've been mulling on for a while now. Just curious, have you read any Thomas Merton? He was a Trappist monk that wrote quite a bit about Zen practice and Christianity.

  16. tomgrasso says:

    I have heard of Merton, but never read anything by him. Is there any one book you would suggest I start with?

  17. tomgrasso says:

    Awesome, and thank you! How do I make sure I contribute to the daily news feeds and how do I receive those of others?

  18. StreetWise says:

    Wow! Thank you! Seriously, thank you so much! Beyond words!

  19. tomgrasso says:

    Did my reply disappear? LOL!

    Thank you so much for this! I look forward to talking you further in the future, and in sharing ideas. Peace.

  20. tomgrasso says:


  21. Laura says:

    Thank you!!!!!! Well said/written!

  22. Ananda says:

    Okay, much said in these comments about earthquakes…. and one was manifest near DC this week…. hmmmm. I truly appreciate your Diagnosis, Cure and Prognosis, Tom… from your pen to All Eyes. It often helps me to keep it all in perspective by appreciating all of the parallels to one of my favorite comics: Bizarro Superman… just who knew it would all come true?