The name of this blog, Rainbow Juice, is intentional.
The rainbow signifies unity from diversity. It is holistic. The arch suggests the idea of looking at the over-arching concepts: the big picture. To create a rainbow requires air, fire (the sun) and water (raindrops) and us to see it from the earth.
Juice suggests an extract; hence rainbow juice is extracting the elements from the rainbow, translating them and making them accessible to us. Juice also refreshes us and here it symbolises our nutritional quest for understanding, compassion and enlightenment.

Tuesday 24 April 2018

Consciousness Emerging?

Readers of this blog and of my book (Opportunities Emerging: Social Change in a Complex World1will know that I am interested in the phenomenon of emergence.  Emergence says that when the component parts of something are combined, then the resultant properties cannot be predicted by an understanding of the individual elements that make it up. 

For example, take the very simple molecule of water (H2O): can the physical aspects of water be predicted from an understanding of hydrogen and oxygen alone?  What do we know of each element on its own?  Hydrogen is bitter, sour smelling, and explosive.  Oxygen is tasteless and odourless.  At normal temperatures, hydrogen is a gas.  So, too, is oxygen.  Yet, when combined as the molecule H2O at normal temperature we get the liquid substance we know as water – the life giver.   Yet, both oxygen and hydrogen on their own only become liquid at extremely low temperatures.  How is that possible?  Scientists call it emergence.

As yet (as far as I am aware) no-one has come up with a scientific theory to explain the process of emergence.2

What About Consciousness

In the past few decades neuroscientists and others have been pondering the question of consciousness.  There is general agreement that consciousness is not synonymous with the brain.  But there does seem to be the assumption that consciousness and the brain are connected.  Furthermore, many assume that consciousness arises from the brain.  This assumption suggests that consciousness is an emergent property of the brain.

But is it?

How about this as a conjecture?  Consciousness is the power/energy/process/vibration which informs the process of emergence.  Western science has been catching up on eastern thought since the 18th century, when the French mathematician, Jean Fourier, recognised the importance of information in how our world is made manifest.  Fourier’s insights have been expanded on massively since then and now information is understood as more critical than space, time, matter, or even energy.  But, “information” in the scientific world is not the assemblage of crude data devoid of meaning or context that we usually associate with the word information.  When the inter-relatedness and inter-connections between data is understood, then we have information – literally in-formation.  That is, when there is form to the data then we can start to see and understand patterns, and with that, we gain knowledge.

Is this in-formation what we also understand as consciousness?  This idea is not as far-fetched or outlandish as it may sound.  Many scientists and institutions around the world are delving into this area of knowledge and discovering some amazing insights.  These insights turn our accepted view of the world on its head.

Foremost amongst these insights is that consciousness does not emerge or arise from our brain.  Our brain, just as our body, is immersed in a vast sea of consciousness, or information if you prefer.  The second major insight from this research is that we can, and do, tap into this consciousness and create and co-create the world.  We become both the creator and the creation.

And, those insights change everything.  It may be that we need to shift our idea that “seeing is believing” to one of “believing is seeing.”  Or, as Dr Wayne Dyer stated, “when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”

Just think.  What if we fully accepted this way of looking at things?  What if we discovered how this works and worked with it, instead of against it?  What could we achieve?  Could we really move from a focus on emergency to working with consciousness and being open to what emerges.

1. meder, bruce, Opportunities Emerging: Social Change in a Complex World, Rainbow Juice Publishing, Coffs Harbour, NSW, 2017.  This is available in paperback or eBook form from

2. If I am wrong, then I would appreciate readers alerting me.

Wednesday 18 April 2018

Gratitude For What's To Come

Gratitude.  Most dictionary definitions define gratitude as being an act of appreciation or thankfulness for something that has already happened, or towards someone who has done something of benefit or kindness towards us.  Dictionary definitions suggest gratitude as being an act that is focused on what has happened, on the past.

Yet, this is a very limited understanding of gratitude.  Gratitude in its fullest sense is a state of being that is forward thinking, focused on the present and the future, on the next moment. 

Gratitude holds within it the twin ideas of appreciation and contentment.  Appreciation for what is, and being content with whatever situation one finds oneself in.  These two notions suggest being fully present in the here and now.

Certainly, there can be a sense of gratefulness towards someone for what they may have done for you.  There may be a sense of gratefulness for something that has already happened – the beautiful sunrise you witnessed at dawn for instance, or perhaps the smile of the person across the aisle in the bus as you travelled to work.

Anticipatory gratitude, however, is a state of mind that approaches life with joy, love and contentment.  Indeed, the etymological root of the word content suggests this.  It comes from two Latin words; com meaning with or together, and tenere, meaning to hold.  Perhaps this is where we get the phrase “hold it together,” which has the idea of being at ease with the situation, or accepting things as they are without reacting inappropriately, or unhelpfully.

Hence, if we approach life with this sense of gratitude, then we may just find that our anticipation, even expectation, that life is enjoyable, abundant, and fulfilling will be exactly that.  We will get what we look forward to.  We will get what we show gratitude for.

Easy said – or written.  How do we do this?  How do we practise gratitude before the event or situation?  There are many suggestions out there on how to do this, here are just a few:

  • Watch for the things we take for granted, then notice how amazing these really are.
  • Approach others with an expectation that the interaction will be helpful to both.
  • Look for the opportunity in every situation to find joy, happiness, or a new learning.
  • Become content.  We all experience sadness, as well as happiness.  It is possible to be content whether it is sadness or happiness we are experiencing at that moment.
  • Keep a journal dedicated to gratefulness.  The more you notice and record what you are grateful for, the more your mind, and soul, will take on anticipatory gratitude.
  • Smile at and with others.

Tuesday 10 April 2018

Men Have Nothing To Fear From Feminism (post-script)

Last month I posted two blogs (here and here) about feminism, patriarchy and masculinity.  Since
then I have come across a couple of items that add to or expand on those themes.  I would like to share them here.  One is a cartoon about "toxic masculinity" and the other is a short video about feminism, patriarchy and gender equality in Iceland.

In the cartoon, the artist (Luke Humphris) outlines succinctly how patriarchy can lead to a condition known as "toxic masculinity" which is particularly damaging to men and those around them.

In the video, the presenter/interviewer (Liz Plank) takes us to Iceland where she interviews a group of men who state clearly that feminism has been of benefit to men and that there is nothing to fear from feminism.  (For those who want to jump ahead to this segment of the video, go to 2 min 55 seconds in).

The cartoon strip can be accessed here.

Wednesday 4 April 2018

Forgetting How To Walk

For most of us, we are born with two legs and feet.  The anatomical purpose of these is to allow us to stand upright and to walk.  However, we seem to be in danger of using our legs and feet only to manipulate the pedals in a car.

In the nineteenth century it was not uncommon for people to walk up to twenty miles (30+ km) to visit friends and family or to attend a show or spectacle they were interested in.  Within just a generation the number of hours spent walking by children has decreased from 1.5 hours to a little over an hour.  How many children walk to school in today's world?

Amongst adults too the amount of walking is minimal.  For most in the western world the daily average is around 3 to 4 km per day.  And remember, this figure includes walking around the home: to and from the bathroom, the kitchen or the car garage.  It includes walking out to the post box or to put the rubbish bin out.  It is not much.

On the other hand, around one-in-five household car trips in the western world are less than 2km in length, and fully two-thirds are less than 6km in length.

Are we forgetting how to walk?

This forgetting comes at a price.
  • The proportion of people who are overweight or obese is surging ever higher.
  • Air pollution from motor vehicles contributes to the premature deaths of hundreds of people each year.
  • Motor vehicles are a major contributor to atmospheric carbon emissions.
  • Interaction between neighbours and communities is limited when we forget how to walk.
  • Contact with nature is also reduced by spending our time inside vehicles and not walking.
  • One and a quarter million people are killed worldwide each year in road deaths.
Ironically, many attempt to get fit or lose weight by going to a gym and exercising on a treadmill.  During the 19th century being put on a treadmill was a form of punishment.  One famous victim of this form of punishment was Oscar Wilde who was sentenced to imprisonment in 1895 for his sexual orientation.  He wrote of this experience in The Ballad of Reading Gaol:
We banged the tins, and bawled the hymns
And sweated on the mill,
But in the heart of every man
Terror was lying still.”
Is the modern form of the treadmill an improvement on that terror?  It is a treadmill, it is not walking.

This world is a wonderful place, full of beauty and splendour.  What better way to experience it than by walking on a beach, in the bush, along a leafy forest trail, amongst a glade of wild flowers, or in the local park.

Lets do so, before we forget how.