The successes of the Summer of Love have now multiplied its base into thousands and thousands of building blocks; new-age bookshops, yoga centers, as well as health and metaphysical stores that are ubiquitous in major cities throughout the world. Those consciousness centers are growing stronger each year, and producing infinite varieties of the One consciousness which has come to replace the previous antiquated forms of accepted wisdom. Books of ancient Asian insight, which had fallen into obscurity during the repressive times, have now become available to everyone. Those whose consciousness has evolved through practice and study of the various Asian wisdom traditions continually scrutinize, and tend to reject, the Western religious and philosophical traditions. The many wars, ongoing world conflicts, and shameless violent behaviors initiated by old and new religious fanatics have only served to strengthen the acceptance of Eastern and Western peace-loving philosophies, which are spreading like a wild fire on dry wood, being fanned by the winds of change.
En-Trance painting by Michael Bowen 1960
This blazing signal would be seen by others, who in turn would be stimulated to dig further into the past Asiatic sciences and techniques of consciousness expansion. Prior to 1967, much of this knowledge had been purposely hidden from the new generations. However, after 1967, this became an impossible task for the fanatical repressors. A vital question for the modern world remains – “Is there a determined enough critical mass of free people that recognize the attack being made from the Islamic, Judaic, and Christian religions against their freedom and evolutionary progress?” In 1967, there was a necessity to break the strangling bonds of the successful oppressors in a kind of an initial surprise attack. That attack was the Summer of Love, its trigger was the Human Be-In, and it was successful simply because truth and wisdom triumphed over dishonesty and ignorance. Love, joy, and ecstasy had succeeded in the most important part of the civilized world, the part of the world that produces modern technological inventions. The successful ending of 2000 years of oppression initiated by the Beat and Love generations is now faced with multiple counterattacks coming from those same fundamentalist organizations that survived. The religious traditions whose origins are in the Middle East all maintain conservative and dangerous factions that advocate the return to oppressive conventional principles. The Summer of Love challenged the authority of 2000 years of tradition as individuals exercised their right to do what they wanted to do, not what they were told they should do by orthodox religious authority figures. This is real freedom. Moreover, this freedom continues to grow and expand throughout the world.
Jesus in India painting by Michael Bowen
Now, in today’s modern societies, the question remains, “Can those who have enjoyed this freedom for the last forty years defend it, and defeat the fundamentalists who are intent on killing and destroying those of us who have built a critical mass of free-thinking individuals within the civilizations in the West?” Make no mistake; the aim of these fundamentalist religions is to destroy what we now call normal. Their mission is to either convert or destroy all who refuse to adhere to their particular dogmas. Those human beings who have embraced freedom of philosophical choice must humanely defend that freedom, on at least three fronts. There can be no question that democratic freedoms, the right to happiness, and the end of cruelty need to be defended and maturely explained. Each individual must summon the will to preserve what has already been accomplished. It is our hope that some of this book contains, within its seemingly mystical aphorisms, combinations of symbols necessary for each of us to draw on and strengthen our will. It is only through this will, guided by love of the Oneness of Humanity, that we prevail against the attacks of the fundamentalists. The ability for the old, dead, dinasouric minds to hide the truth is over. We now know that in the past forty years, a split has been created among the generations that have arrived in the year 2007. On the one hand are those fearful persons ready to defend their ignorance, and on the other, those who have been freed, and will never, under any circumstances, allow themselves or their children to be returned to the intellectual slavery, ignorance, and control that has existed in the past. Methods of identifying which side of the split a person is on have developed. Emanations from the new human have arisen, and can be recognized by their compatriots.
Temptation of Christ at the pool of Love etching by Michael Bowen 1972
Some parts of the formally repressive and general media have given way, and are referring to the actions 40 years ago as positive, rather than the negative and pejorative stereotypes that have been repeated by the media during the intervening years. This signals a collapse of the resistance to a former media-reality, even though there are still many Americans who continue their general attack upon all freedoms. It is dangerous to say the attack of fundamentalists on our freedoms is in its last throes, the approaching extinction of a dinosaur mentality. The reason is that, unless we gather the will to hold what we have won, history shows it could be lost. An example is a suicide bomber; a suicide bomber is a desperate attempt to enforce the morality of oppression.
The ravings of fundamentalist Christians, and their attacks which bring death, suffering, and fear to others, are serious techniques which must be removed. It is vital that the newly evolved human rapidly replace the Neanderthal-like brains of those who have brought us to the brink of destruction with their machinery of death, politics of fear, blind adherence to religious tradition, and their neglect of Mother Earth. It is very important to remember that this story of the creation of the Human Be-In, which explains the truth of a gigantic turning in human consciousness, was initiated by a tiny minority of very determined individuals, and did not happen by chance. Today, there are an enormous amount of people who are aligned with the split away from the old paradigms, and are actively seeking out new solutions for saving our civilization, and preserving the rights of the yet unborn. This change of consciousness began just as the American Revolution began – with the
Buddha Love Garden painting by Michael Bowen 2003
few and the brave; determined individuals who arose from the general masses, much as a lotus arises from the earth. It must never be thought this great turn for the positive future of humanity began as some accident or myth. It began with people bringing their minds together, using their hands and their lives to make this change. The lasting message of Thomas Jefferson, Gandhi, Benjamin Franklin, the Buddha, and the mysterious myth of Christ, and many other prophets and sages who had the courage to speak the truth of Love, brought forth by the will of the people, has again manifested. The realization of how to rekindle the eternal message of Love through human will is again taking shape, as the world looks back 40 years, through a still foggy prism, to the historic Summer of Love. Now, that prism must be cleaned, so the truth of how things really work in great movements shines forth. The purpose of this story is to show the world how the triggering Human Be-In, and the following Summer of Love, became manifest, and the path we have set upon. Let us hope that during these forty years of generation expansion, a critical mass of humans determined to use their will to preserve the freedoms they have gained, shall recognize each other in time to correct the folly of fools that has led civilization down a clearly treacherous descent for these many years. Let there be no more leaders, but only true servants of the people, united as One.
Beast upon the Sea etching by Michael Bowen
Asked the Seeker: Oh Master, tell me of the way to bliss.
The Master said: Beloved Seeker, child of karma, you are alike unto a beast upon the sea. Formed by your tears is the ocean upon which you pass alone from point to point. The doorway to the land of Oneness, the heart, seems always almost within your grasp. This sea is but the Maya, the delusion, which covers knowledge of reality. To reach the land of bliss one must seek within the body of one’s own beast to find the way. Meditate upon the meditator who sits within in stillness and in peace. Meditate upon your Self.
From Michael Bowen’s unfinished book “After Kahlil Gibran”