You Can Watch the First Episode of the Series “Enslaved” Streaming Live NOW–Today Only

You all have perhaps read or heard about the new series on Epix, “Enslaved,” produced by Samuel L. Jackson and three-time Emmy award winner Simcha Jacobovici.  It is a six part series, airing in the US beginning today/Monday, but you can watch it free TODAY Monday and next week, the first two episodes, without an Epix subscription.

Here is the link, including the trailer, it is live streaming NOW: https://www.epix.com/series/enslaved
Here is a BBC link worth watching either before or after: https://www.bbc.com/news/education-52010859

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More at #EnslavedEPIX on FB, Twitter, and Instagram

I just got this note from the director:

Over 400 years, over 12 million Africans were trafficked to the New World. More than 2 million died en route. We decided to tell the story by diving sunken slave ships and using that quest as a springboard for exploring the ideology, politics and economics of the slave trade. We also tell the stories of resistance, the cultures left behind and the “New World” cultures that – in large part – were born in the bowels of those slave ships.
It’s been three years of nonstop research, diving and filmmaking. My fellow executive producer and on-camera personality is none other than human rights activist and Hollywood icon Samuel L. Jackson! Journalist superstar Afua Hirsch is also on camera along with yours truly. Given recent events, the series can’t be coming out at a more relevant time. I hope that it becomes part of the dialogue, the education and the healing. As a child of Holocaust survivors, I have to believe that the only way to avoid future suffering is by educating ourselves on past suffering.
Epix will be airing one episode per week for the next 6 weeks. In Canada, the CBC Documentary Channel and the CBC main channel will be airing the series starting October 17th and 18th. BBC2 will also be airing the series in mid-October.

Predators and Prey

I have become convinced over my tiny “blink of an eye” three-score and ten years on this pale blue dot that our natural world, as it has unfolded through time, most acutely reflects the dichotomy of  Predator and Prey–especially at the higher levels–those creatures, humans included, with brains and central nervous systems. Humans especially, and here I am thinking about individual psychological traits, are one or the other–not a mixture of the two.

This goes beyond the scientific understanding of our 3rd/Reptile brain–from which all of us certainly operate in a hard-wired fashion, given our instinctual drives, reflected in self-preservation–food, sex, and aggressive self-protection and promotion.

With our fellow inhabitants of the planet whose brains operate at a more instinctual “3rd brain” level, there is no moral judgment to be made. They are what they are, from the cute little kitten torturing the hapless wounded mouse, to the lion devouring the tiny lamb. But we humans have a choice, as self-conscious, self-determining “actualizations” of reality operating in a more free and adaptable arena. We call it social and individual “morality” and it is surely culturally determined in its manifestations, but not wholly so. Not at the deep level of individual Self.

Predators are those who push, manipulate, and appropriate as much as possible for the individual and extended Self. Violence, aggression, greed, and power are their hallmarks, even if such behavior is on a micro-level. Prey are their object–as one must conquer and oppress to obtain this power. Those who are Prey of course have their own system of individual and social values, chiefly the internal ethic of “Do No Harm.” Of course all give lip service to the virtues of giving, sharing, loving, and caring–but Predators do the opposite while claiming to reflect such. Prey, however, are not weak and defenseless. They are in fact “fiercely” powerful and strong in behalf of those in their care–and I mean in an extended planetary sense.

Who has the insight to do a bit of self-classification? It is tough and requires introspection and meditation on the self and the paths we have taken with their resulting consequences.

In terms of which side “wins” or dominates, the balance is overwhelmingly in favor of the Predators. After all, there is nothing stopping them from their behavior, even if it results in untold suffering and sorrow for others, and the destruction of our planet. But I am one who holds to the simple core authentic teachings of Jesus and the GENESIA vision of Isaiah the Prophet–and I take them as “apocalyptic” and “eschatological” in the long arch of history–not magical mysteries from heaven:

Happy are you poor, you who weep, you who are hungry, you who are persecuted–yours is the kingdom of God–not in heaven but on earth. Yes, the meek shall inherit the earth!

On these I stand, God help me, I can do no other…

Inventing Hitler…

I get the impression that people are increasingly representing Hitler as a dictator given to raging uncontrollably and biting the rug even on slight pretexts. This seems to me a false and dangerous course. If the human features are going to be missing from the portrait of Hitler, if his persuasiveness, his engaging characteristics, and even the Austrian charm he could trot out, are left out of the reckoning, no faithful picture of him will be achieved.

Albert Speer, Spandau: The Secret Diaries, 1976.