Indonesia executes six drug convicts, five of them foreigners

Indonesia executes six drug convicts, five of them foreigners
Widodo has pledged to bring reform to Indonesia

Ban appeals to Indonesia to stop death row executions

Ban appeals to Indonesia to stop death row executions
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has pleaded to Indonesia to stop the execution of prisoners on death row for drug crimes. AFP PHOTO

Pope: 'Death penalty represents failure' – no 'humane' way to kill a person

Pope: 'Death penalty represents failure' – no 'humane' way to kill a person
The pope wrote that the principle of legitimate personal defense isn’t adequate justification to execute someone. Photograph: Zuma/Rex

Obama becomes first president to visit US prison (US Justice Systems / Human Rights)

Obama becomes first president to visit US prison   (US Justice Systems / Human Rights)
US President Barack Obama speaks as he tours the El Reno Federal Correctional Institution in El Reno, Oklahoma, July 16, 2015 (AFP Photo/Saul Loeb)

US Death Penalty (Justice Systems / Human Rights)

US Death Penalty (Justice Systems / Human Rights)
Woman who spent 23 years on US death row cleared (Photo: dpa)


"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Sounds of Bali Find an Audience in the United States

Jakarta Globe, Lara Pellegrinelli | December 12, 2010

The floors of New York City’s music halls attain various states of cleanliness. Few ensembles are in a better position to observe them up close than the Balinese ensemble Gamelan Dharma Swara.

Gamelan Dharma Swara, an ensemble based out of the
Indonesian Consulate in New York City, just released
it first album, a two-disc set. (Photo courtesy
In an October performance at a West Village club, its musicians sat cross-legged behind an array of glittering bronze percussion instruments on the black basement floor, a linoleum surface one suspects began as some other color.

Pool-playing patrons sat next to more sober listeners on beer-stained sofas.

It might seem far from Bali in spirit, but the music’s spectacular brightness attracted a rogue dog, something you might encounter in any temple courtyard.

Home for Dharma Swara is not Indonesia itself, but rather its consulate in New York.

That converted town house has a basketball court’s worth of hardwood on which to rehearse. Membership in the group is open to anyone.

The set of instruments — gongs, xylophones, drums and flutes — accommodates about 20 players.

Some are Balinese, but most are not.

The ensemble serves both to promote Balinese music and dance and, in a practical sense, to support diplomatic events.

The performers are roving diplomats themselves.

In addition to sundry clubs and concert halls, they have performed on the carpets of the United Nations, in the lobbies of museums, at college auditoriums and in the gardens of private patrons.

A flurry of dates last year helped raise money for a summer tour of Bali.

Last Sunday the group celebrated the release of its first album, a double CD set titled “Gamelan Dharma Swara,” with a concert in Greenwich Village.

An offering dance, a traditional form of temple worship performed with a nimble trio of women, honored the audience in a shower of flower petals.

The program also featured Pan Wandres’s Kebyar Legong (1914), a 30-minute tour de force with such explosive shifts of mood and tempo that few groups try to perform it — even in Bali.

The sound of gamelan ensembles, which have distinct Javanese and Balinese forms, became known to Western classical music connoisseurs through Debussy, Ravel and other composers who found its tonalities novel and inspiring.

In the 1930s, a young Canadian named Colin McPhee (1900-64) began drawing on gamelan’s interlocking melodic patterns in his own music, and his works and a later book of research became reference points for Balinese music in the West.

“In some ways Colin McPhee had the wrong impression of Balinese music,” said Pak I Nyoman Saptanyana, Dharma Swara’s artistic director since 2001.

“He preserved the older forms at the expense of all the new 20th-century styles. He didn’t see this as a living tradition that should continue to evolve.”

As in McPhee’s time, Balinese music continues to be swept up in romantic fantasies of the primitive and exotic, which Westerners frequently confuse with authenticity.

“Bali still serves as an icon of the mysterious premodern East,” said Andrew McGraw, the executive director of Dharma Swara.

“It satisfies a neo-liberal nostalgia for community and spirituality.

“Gamelan in the US is as much, if not more, a story about us than an accurate representation of Indonesian culture.”

It’s a story told by scores of gamelan ensembles across North America, many of which trace their roots to Mantle Hood, a pioneering ethnomusicologist who believed that scholars should learn to perform the traditions that they study.

In 1958 he started the first US-based gamelan at the University of California, Los Angeles, and trained the leaders of a hundred more.

At least that many ensembles exist today, on college campuses and as community groups like Dharma Swara.

Although the roster changes from year to year, Dharma Swara tends to include both emerging and established talents on the new music scene.

Recent members include the bagpiper Matt Welch (Blarvuster), the trombonist and instrument builder Richard Marriott (Club Foot Orchestra) and the percussionist Michael Lipsey (Talujon), who starts his own gamelan ensemble at Queens College in January.

“The learning process makes you use your brain in a completely different way,” said flutist Jessica Schmitz, co-director of the Asphalt Orchestra.

New pieces are taught by rote without notation, which requires deep understanding of musical structure as well as attention to detail. Because multiple parts combine to create a single melody, players depend on one another to rehearse as well as perform.

Saptanyana also notes that half the members are composers, some of whom have contributed to Dharma Swara’s repertory.

During Dharma Swara’s Balinese tour, audiences applauded wildly for an original work by McGraw, “Sikut Sanga,” which appropriates swaths of melody from “New York, New York” and “A Night in Tunisia.”

Next week one work will be a world premiere, by Saptanyana’s 18-year-old son, Putu, who performs on multiple instruments.

“I brainstormed using all the music I’ve ever heard and picked some ideas that I liked,” said Putu Saptanyana, who has spent as much time around New York City as in his Balinese village, Ubud.

As the audience ponders its intricately layered pulse and shimmer, few would suspect that the young composer does his most intensive listening to gamelan while he plays his Xbox 360.

The New York Times

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