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Spiritual Surf: Meet four online horsemen of the apocalypse

SOUL’S CODE — What is the Internet-borne phenom dubbed the “doomer-sphere”? Depression chatter, global-warming warnings and permanent war in the Middle East. Introducing four viral experts:

Nassim Taleb is a former hedge-fund manager and critic of globalization who is a kind of  ‘anti-Thomas Friedman.’ His break-out book spent more than a year on the New York Times non-fiction list, and got a reported $4-million advance

Dimitry Orlov: Years before the financial crisis, the Russian software engineer made a sailboat his home — and survival strategy. On Club Orlov, he blogs about the notions that made his book , Reinventing Collapse: The Soviet Example and American Prospects, an underground hit.

James Kunstler: is a pre-apocalyptic, off-the-grid guy who lives in Saratoga Springs, NY; author of the book, “The Geography of Nowhere“; and weekly blogger on the Clusterfuck Nation.

Gold-bug Jim Sinclair bet any takers $1 million that gold would hit $1,650 per oz. by 2011.


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Spiritual Surf: Dalai Lama’s Hell on Earth, Brad Pitt explores the soul of Percy Fawcett, and Dr. Phil “Creamed”

Dalai Lama: Tibet has become “Hell on Earth”

Speaking yesterday in Dharamsala, India, on the 50th anniversary of Tibet’s foiled uprising against Chinese rule, the Dalai Lama warned that Tibetan culture faces extinction and that authoritarian rule has made life in the Himalayan nation “hell on earth.”

It’s one of the boldest announcements that the Peace prize winning leader has yet uttered against the government that claims its policies are designed to do just the opposite – create a post-faith, materialist heaven on earth.

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Spiritual Surf: Founding Faith, India’s Top 10 Gurus, Giant Dr. Phil Gets Axe, and More

Beliefnet Founder’s Founding Faith

Talking about his new book, Founding Faith: How Our Founding Fathers Forged a Radical New Approach to Religious Liberty, on National Public Radio last week, Beliefnet co-founder, Steve Waldman, debunks the twin myths that the Founding Fathers were either a pack of howling evangelicals or a group of proto-new age spiritualists. The Fathers’ intent, he says, was actually to promote faith by separating religion from government.

Dr. Phil, tear down this billboard!

Residents of West Los Angeles, irked over the size of a huge, 60 by 100-foot Dr. Phil billboard on National Blvd., complained to the city.

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bama smoke

Spiritual Surf: Obama fatigue, ‘General’ Chopra, Dr. Phil’s ratings, and More

Betting against Obama fatigue

By now it’s clear that former President Elect Barack Obama‘s image can sell just about anything, from puppy sweaters to phony commemorative coins. But he can also sell your cause — any cause — as discovered by On its “Yes You Can Challenge” petitions page — where you can create and circulate your own petition electronically — the site boasts a picture and an inspiring quote from the new prez. Piggy-backing an inspiring brand to inspire people is a natural strategy for self-help sites — as long as the brand lasts. Some were already claiming “Obama fatigue” before last year’s election.

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7 spiritual recession lessons

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Coming to a city near you: The best and the brightest of the transcendental, mind-blowing, kandy-kolored, soul-expanding 2007 enlightenment road show

You may have noticed from our last few posts that some of the biggest brands on the enlightenment circuit are criss-crossing the continent right now. We’ve put all the links we’ve scattered around Soul’s Code in one place here. Click on a speaker’s name for their full tour schedule, which we’ve annotated with highlights.

Caroline Myss, the author of Sacred Contracts tours a new book, Entering the Castle

  • March 8 Jacob Javits Convention Ctr., New York
  • March 21 L.A. Convention Ctr., Los Angeles
  • March 23 Masonic Center, San Francisco

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Gavin Newsom: the affair of a mayor makes the New York Times

Gavin Newsom: the affair of a mayor makes the New York Times

Gavin Newsom fulfilled a universal ego ambition. Out of 350-plus mayors in the United States, it was he who made the New York Times on Friday. But not for reasons the ego would conspicuously approve. Newsom had an affair with a 33-year-old woman who’d just had a baby — and she was married to the mayor’s equivalent of Karl Rove. In fact, both the married woman and her husband were on Newsom’s payroll.

But don’t ask Soul’s Code to lead with black-and-white moral indignation (we save all of that for Dr. Phil!). To pass judgement on this guy is to turn him into a blotter for our own downside projections and denied dark matter.

Newsom acts out of the same collective database, so to speak, that feeds all of our experience. And love triangles are one of the most primal plug-and-play programs coded into the human psyche, from Helen of Troy-Paris-Menelaus to the lovers Tomas, Tereza and Sabina in The Unbearable Lightness of Being. Actually, Newsom’s triangle sounds similar to the affair that the patrician Walter Lippman had with the wife of his best friend and colleague, Hamilton Fish Armstrong.

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Spiritual Surf: Dr. Phil trolls for trash; pays millions

Spiritual Surf: Dr. Phil trolls for trash; pays millions

Dr. Phil, the official mascot of Oprah, has a permanent page on the site for his own TV series called “Be on the show” to solicit victims to air their soiled psychic baggage — and boost his ratings. Is it any wonder that people like Gavin Newsom and Lindsay Lohan go mad in this mad, mad world that Dr. Phil helps make more mad?

We excerpt brother Phil’s language whereby he seeks to facilitate an episode about marital discord and reconciliation. Direct quote, courtesy of Dr. Phil:

“CA ONLY: Know an Evil Bitch?

Do you know an evil bitch? Are you married to one? Do you constantly get in arguments over who’s more evil – you or them? Does it drive you crazy how nasty this ‘evil bitch’ can be and you want Dr. Phil to put them in their place? Tell us your story.”

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