Thursday, March 27, 2014

Enjoying Mu

Enjoying Mu by Kurt Spellmeyer

The bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara-the one known in Chinese as Kwan Yin-describes Mu this way in the Heart Sutra, probably the most important sutra in Zen:

In emptiness there is no form, no feelings, perceptions, impulses, consciousness. No eyes, no ears, no nose, no tongue, no body, no mind; no realm of eyes and so forth until no realm of mind cosciousness. No ignorance and also no extinction of it, and so forth until no old age and death and also no extinction of them. No suffering, no origination, no stopping, no path, no cognition, also no attainment with nothing to attain.

... Even if this emptiness looks a lot like death or like the world coming to an end. It's effect on our lives is astonishing. It can free you from every fear. There's no memory, habit, or buried trauma-no obstacle of any kind-that it can't dissolve like water wearing down a stone.

... The nature of things doesn't change at all. What has changed is our perception of them. We discover that everything is Mu, and that Mu is everything."Form is emptiness," and "Emptiness is form." And when we see our obstacles for what they are-fundamentally nothingness-their hold over us gradually erodes

The Book of Mu (P.278-9)

Friday, January 17, 2014

Landschaft

"Any landscape is a condition of the spirit." - Henri Frederic Amiel

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Pico Iyer

“I do think it’s only by stopping movement that you can see where to go. And it’s only by stepping out of your life and the world that you can see what you most deeply care about… and find a home.”

Friday, October 18, 2013

Dacher Keltner: Darwin, Vagus, Oxytocin & Kindness

Oxytocin : Group Superiority & Cooperation

FIVE SURPRISING WAYS OXYTOCIN SHAPES YOUR LIFE 
By Jeremy Adam Smith, October 17, 2013, Greater Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life, UC Berkeley

"It’s been called the cuddle hormone, the holiday hormone, the moral molecule, and more—but new research suggests that oxytocin needs some new nicknames. Like maybe the conformity hormone, or perhaps the America-Number-One! molecule..."

Pregenual cingulate cortex: Opiods & Rejection

“Individuals who scored high for the resiliency trait on a personality questionnaire tended to be capable of more opioid release during social rejection, especially in the amygdala,” a region of the brain involved in emotional processing, Hsu says. “This suggests that opioid release in this structure during social rejection may be protective or adaptive.”

The more opioid release during social rejection in another brain area called the pregenual cingulate cortex, the less the participants reported being put in a bad mood by the news that they’d been snubbed.

The researchers also examined what happens when the participants were told that someone they’d expressed interest in had expressed interest in them – social acceptance. In this case, some brain regions also had more opioid release. “The opioid system is known to play a role in both reducing pain and promoting pleasure, and our study shows that it also does this in the social environment,” says Hsu...

“It is possible that those with depression or social anxiety are less capable of releasing opioids during times of social distress, and therefore do not recover as quickly or fully from a negative social experience. Similarly, these individuals may also have less opioid release during positive social interactions, and therefore may not gain as much from social support,” Hsu theorizes."

The rest of the article at U of MI Health: http://www.uofmhealth.org/news/archive/201310/opioid-social  
Molecular Psychology Journal:http://www.nature.com/mp/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/mp201396a.html


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Sacred Science Docu Film

FREE Online Screening of this film THIS WEEK until the 17th! 

Eight people. Eight illnesses. One journey into the heart of the Amazon jungle. They went looking for alternatives to the modern medicines that failed them. What they found would change their lives forever.



HOW FAR WOULD YOU GO TO HEAL?

Parkinson's Disease, Breast Cancer, Diabetes, Depression... Despite remarkable advances in modern medicine, our society still struggles to effectively treat these and other common illnesses.

Witness the story of eight brave souls as they leave the developed world behind in search of deeper answers. Living in seclusion for one month in the heart of the Amazon jungle, these men and women take part in the powerful healing practices of Peru's indigenous medicine men, working with centuries-old plant remedies and spiritual disciplines. In their most desperate hour, these patients are forced to confront not only their physical ailments, but their own spiritual and psychological barriers in the process. Five will return with real results, two will return disappointed, and one won't come back at all.

OFFICIAL SELECTION:

Mill Valley Film Festival Environmental Film Festival Starz Denver Film Festival Tel Aviv Spirit Film Festival Byron Bay Film Festival Sydney Latin American Film Festival Connecticut Film Festival Dominican Republic Migrant Worker Film Festival

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Banksy "Sirens of the Lambs"


"Sirens of the Lambs," the latest installation in his city-wide series of works, “Better Out Than In,” features a barnyard-worth of plush toys poking their squishy heads through the slats of a slaughterhouse delivery truck for Farm Fresh Meats. Their heads sway, mouths agape, anthropomorphized faces seemingly aware of their fate—and they squeal and squeak, loudly, all the while. 

 “I know what you’re thinking: isn’t it a bit subtle?” the satirical audio tour featured on Banksy’s website says of piece. “Here, the artist Banksy is making some sort of comment on the causal cruelty of the food industry. Or perhaps something vague and pretentions about the loss of childhood innocence.” 

- Willy Blackmore (Banky's Not So Silent Lambs Hit the Streets of NYC, TakePart, Oct 11, 2013)

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Storytelling to the Right People

"You share with people who earned the right to hear your story. You have to think long and hard about who has earned the right to hear this story, and with whom am I in a relationship with that can bear the weight of the story." Brene Brown. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

A Place at the Table

Towards the end of my stay in the States 2000, I was living on rationed multipack double-stuffed Oreos from CVS for a week, then dozens of donuts from Dunkin Donuts for another. In Switzerland 2004, it was cheap multipack chocolate bars for a better part of a year. In Korea 2009, several weeks worth of multipack ramen. All under $5.

I recommend this documentary film for those interested in food, the food industry, food insecurity. This happens not just in the States, but everywhere junk food is advertised widely and prevalent on every corner throughout major cities and around the world where food insecurity exists.

"If you look at what has happened to the relative price of fresh fruits and vegetables it has gone up 40% when the obesity epidemic began... In contrast the relative price of processed foods has gone down by 40%. So if you only have a limited amount of money to spend, you're going to spend you're going to spend it on the cheapest calories you can get, and that's going to be processed foods. This has to do with our farm policy and what we subsidize and what we don't." - Marion Nestle, Author of 'Food Politics' from the documentary 'A Place at the Table' (2012)

A PLACE AT THE TABLE (from the makers of Food Inc):
http://www.takepart.com/place-at-the-table

MARION NESTLE: "Today's 'Eat More' Environment"

http://www.foodpolitics.com/wp-content/uploads/Pringle_Place_13.pdf

INCONSTÂNCIA MATERIAL




On the occasion of the 30th São Paulo Biennial, Galeria Luciana Brito presents Mexican artist Héctor Zamora's most recent use of brick as a material. In Inconstância material ["Material inconstancy"], Zamora arranged twenty bricklayers in the gallery space, who toss bricks to each other in a circuitous pattern extending from the interior gallery to the gangway to the parking lot — lifting, tossing, and chatting as if it's a typical day at a construction site. Zamora brings the bricklayers inside to foreground the intimate processes by which our buildings and societies are constructed, and to suggest that (hierarchical) systems of construction and fabrication within the art world depend upon and reflect those of society. The service culture of art and its hidden mechanisms are called into question. The piece wonders who is serving whom in the art world, and what, if anything, is being constructed?

In Inconstância Material the endless but purposeless passing of bricks nullifies the act in terms of productivity. But the bricklayers are not just working — they're passing rehearsed comments back and forth along with the bricks. Zamora has invited the Brazilian poet and artist Nuno Ramos to create a spoken piece, Gigante ["Giant"] (2012), to accompany the physical one. Colloquial expressions that refer to parts of the body have been gathered and organized for the workmen to shout in a sequence that dismantles their phrasing, distributing a unified body on a circuit. This site-specific geometry of speech correlates with the shape of the movement. By momentarily formalizing bits of working-class language within the walls of the gallery, an uncategorizable moment between stasis and movement, work and leisure, art and life, arises. Typical of Zamora's oeuvre as a whole, Inconstância material suggests the possibilities for creativity and play even in the most confining of circumstances.

The ceramic brick is an object that continually recurs throughout Zamora's work. In projects like 6, da série Potencialidades ["6, from the Potentialities series"] (São Paulo, 2009) and ­­H20 (São Paulo, 2010), the brick itself is materially deconstructed; in other projects, most notably De Belg wordt geboren met een baksteen in de maag ["Every Belgian is born with a brick in his stomach"] (2008), the stratification of the laboring classes themselves is deconstructed.

(Taken from Elvia Wilk entitled "Tactics of suspension and deceleration — on Héctor Zamora", wrote for the catalogue published on the occasion of the exhibition Inconstância Material. Courtesy of Héctor Zamora & Luciana Brito Galeria). 

http://www.domusweb.it/en/news/2012/09/17/hector-zamora-inconstancia-material.html


INCONSTÂNCIA MATERIAL _ Hector Zamora from / REGISTRO DE ARTE / on Vimeo.

Rape: It's Your Fault

Sunday, September 22, 2013

E Arioi Vahine

Tahiti 1668. As a child Poeiti wanted to become a part of the Arioi Tribe of Tahiti. As a pregnant teenager she finds out the golden rule of the Arioi and how far she could go to carry out their traditions.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Modern Food Production : Our Daily Bread



"Our Daily Bread (German: Unser täglich Brot) is a 2005 documentary film directed, co-produced, and with cinematography by Nikolaus Geyrhalter. The script was co-written by Wolfgang Widerhofer and Nikolaus Geyrhalter.The film depicts how modern food production companies employ technology to maximize efficiency, consumer safety and profit. It consists mainly of actual working situations without voice-over narration or interviews as the director tries to let viewers form their own opinion on the subject. The names of the companies where the footage was filmed are purposely not shown. The director's goal is to provide a realistic view on the internal workings of multiple food production companies in our modern society."

Saturday, September 07, 2013

"When you are in the middle of a story it isn’t a story at all, but only a confusion; a dark roaring, a blindness, a wreckage of shattered glass and splintered wood; like a house in a whirlwind, or else a boat crushed by the icebergs or swept over the rapids, and all aboard powerless to stop it. It’s only afterwards that it becomes anything like a story at all. When you’re telling it, to yourself or to someone else." –Margaret Atwood, Alias Grace (Opening quote to Sarah Polley's "Stories We Tell")

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Claiming Space

"…don’t give me your tenets and your laws. Don’t give me your lukewarm gods. What I want is an accounting with all three cultures - white, Mexican, Indian. I want the freedom to carve and chisel my own face, to staunch the bleeding with ashes, to fashion my own gods out of my entrails. And if going home is denied me then I will have to stand and claim my space, making a new culture - una cultura mestiza - with my own lumber, my own bricks and mortar and my own feminist architecture." - Gloria Anzaldúa, Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza