Well, I guess, first of all I feel relieved.
It was painful to see the dwindling audience of hard core ex new agers assemble once more at various Mind, Body, Spirit events and try to recreate something that was wonderful and sparkling once ... long ago ...
The fact is that you can't turn back time, and all things have a context in time and in space.
The excitement of the New Age movement lay right alongside the excitement about the new science movement - everyone was excited about everything, even if they stayed strictly out of each others way, to make sure never the twain would meet.
At one conference, the reality of travel to the stars was discussed; at another in the building next door, the reality of making this lifetime the last one on that excruciating karmic wheel was discussed.
The sky wasn't the limit, and death wasn't the end - those were the days ...
And here we stand now at the crossroads, and we wonder what's next.
What are we to do now?
But as every good old new ager knows, when the watch tower gets struck by lightning and falls in the Tarot deck, there is catastrophe, yes, but also an opportunity.
An amazing moment, that moment BEFORE the new has been build not from the ruins of the old, but in their place, to build something else, something different where that old watch tower once stood to keep the hordes of barbarians at bay ...
And the fact is that it has all already happened.
The barbarians are no longer at the gate - they have overrun the bastions, all of them, across the board of humanity, science, magic, art, religion.
They have already come, and they've already conquered if only they knew it - but who are those barbarians?
Of course, they are all these many individual people who have stepped up and used the Internet to be heard when once they could have been so easily silenced.
The barbarians have changed the landscape in their passing, and are changing it more and more as each day goes by - whether they are blogging on politics or science, on enlightenment, on art or fahsion, or putting their Sunday sermons on the web for anyone to find who wants to hear them speak, there isn't a single field of human endeavour left where the old watch towers still stand untouched by the tide of human voices, opinions, and divergent approaches, thoughts, ideas.
In that cacophony of voices, can anyone still be heard?
Of course. There are always some who make more sense than others, who have their fingers on the spirit of the time more sensitively than others. Those are those who see opportunities when the lightning strikes have happened and all descends into chaos.
However, for now the time of the "big guru" has passed.
The internet has made everything personal, and has made people real.
Where before, there were well constructed PR masks and statues, we are confronted with real living people who have friends on Facebook and mess up by sending weird text messages, tweets and emails to the wrong recipients.
We have the constant threat of witness testimony as every mobile phone can create a picture that says more than a thousand words about the humanity and fallibility of actual people - and shocking though this may be, it was always needed to bring back a level of REALITY to the doings of both science and the New Age, and religion, and politics, and business, and fashion, and art, and music, and, and, and ...
Here's the deal.
All these things are still as immensely exciting as they ever were - if you can keep it real, this time.
There are a million things to be explored about people, their history, their lives, their doings, their feelings, their spirituality, their sciences, their work, their play, their understandings of what is really going on with the world and all of us who try to live in it, with and inspite of each other.
A million things to explore?
A billion ... more ... much more than that.
And when do we really start to explore?
When we get out of ILLUSION, that's when.
When we find the courage and the strength to look around at the rubble of the watch towers and the barbarians dancing in the street and can finally say, "Well, that didn't work then ..."
And that's the moment when we have to forget all about the old blueprints of the old watch towers and lay aside any notion of trying to rebuild what was there before.
If you even think in that direction, goaded by nostalgia and old guiding stars from way back when, you are missing the opportunity and the freedom for the next thing we can build here.
Something new and different.
Something even more exciting, even more wonderful, bigger, brighter, more extraordinary than anything the world has ever seen - so far.
And here's another thing.
In this moment of opportunity, this time-space crossroad where the future lies entirely open, and essentially at our own command, don't turn around.
Don't even try to "learn the lessons" from what went wrong before.
Forget it all.
As long as you're still looking over your shoulder, you are caught in the past and you're missing out on the present.
THAT back then did not work.
It has nothing to teach us now.
Thinking about what not to do is the worst reversal, waste of time and always binds the new that could have been back into the past that failed so miserably.
Don't try and get lessons out of what was good back then, either. Whatever may have been thought to have been good was inextricably linked to all the other stuff, and it wasn't enough to stop the cataclysm from happening - clearly.
Forget it all, good and bad alike.
Just don't look over your shoulder, look ahead instead.
What can we do right now?
What do we want, right now?
And how can we make that happen?
Let's use our intelligence and the energy of excitement and joy at the opportunity here that only ever exists at the moment of cataclysm, and never afterwards again until there is another cataclysm.
This is new.
Now let's think.
Do we still want to go to the stars? Damn right we do!
Do we still want to get off the karmic wheel and live forever in the light? Of course!
Do we still believe in the extraordinary capacity of human beings to not just endure, but prosper and flourish, given the smallest of a half chance?
Of course we do.
So let's start from the beginning.
Let's start with new ideas, ideas that are born of now, and here. Fresh, appropriate, timely, perfectly in response to what's needed and wanted and desired.
Let's try and do this not the old way with make belief, reality withdrawal, pretense, trying to be someone or something that we're not, or that we know things we don't.
Let's ask questions, many questions, and put our heads together, see if we can't come up with an answer that is born of the here and now, and leads us into the future.
And here is one last thing to be thankful and joyful about.
When the lightning strikes the watch tower and the cataclysm has happened, something else happens too, by co-incidence or perhaps it's a law of the Universe itself.
All the sins of the past end at that moment.
Everything that was done wrong, thought wrong, felt wrong, created wrongly, for the wrong reasons, in the wrong way, knowingly and unknowingly just the same -
It is all over, with all of that.
You are forgiven for all of it in that moment that the old falls irretrievably, and the new is there to greet us.
You, and me, and everyone is forgiven.
Now we've got another chance.
We might not deserve it, but we have it.
And if we can now courageously step into the future and never look back, neither in anger, nor in regret, we are going to have the best time of all again, when all is young, all is fresh, all is new, and ...
ALL HAS JUST BECOME POSSIBLE.
I welcome the demise of the New Age, and I can't wait to see what THIS age has on offer to make us glad to be alive, and smile.
Dr Silvia Hartmann