Even in absurdity, sacrament.     Even in hardship, holiness.     Even in doubt, faith.     Even in chaos, realization.    Even in paradox, blessedness

 

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"Life expands or shrinks in proportion to one's courage."    ~Anain Nin

{ Tuesday, 30 November, 2004 }

Two very fine beers in my low-tolerance system, a stormy night, and nostalgia by the bucket load finds this article very appropriate for posting: Concise Timetable of Beer History.

  • Noah's provisions included beer on the Ark.

  • 4300 BC, Babylonian clay tablets detail recipes for beer.

  • Beer was a vital part of civilization and the Babylonian, Assyrian, Egyptian, Hebrew, Chinese, and Inca cultures.

  • Babylonians produced beer in large quantities with around 20 varieties.

  • Beer at this time was so valued that it was sometimes used to pay workers as part of their daily wages.

    Chin up to that!

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:53 in Posting Under the Influence | | permalink



    Nano-, nano-, boo boo! Tiny carbon cylinders set record

    A British research team has made it into the record books by creating the smallest "test tubes" known to science. Materials scientists from Oxford and Nottingham universities performed chemical reactions inside tiny tubes of carbon atoms known as nanotubes.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:11 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Gallery: Secret Art of the Freemasons. (Article)

    Fraternalism in America has bridged gaps in many ways: economically—as the rich and poor were members of the same lodge; geographically—as fraternalism was a great healing force after the Civil War, where Northerners and Southerners met on a common level in the lodge room; racially—as African-American-Prince Hall Freemasonry and Underground Railroad secret societies like the Knights and Daughters of Tabor helped ferry those escaping the fetters of slavery, on to freedom; and immigrant lodges, which helped to give support and a sense of family to foreigners in a strange land.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:18 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Genesis P-Orridge: Behavioural Cut-Ups and Magick

    My primary concerns in space and time: That situation which society informs us is named "being alive," or on more intellectual days, "reality;" are Control, Human Behaviour, and an inkling that underlying everything is a web of parallel causes and parallel effects upon which we can exert more manipulative pressure than we are led to believe by the aforementioned Society. Whilst is is true that we did not ask to be here, it is also true that we did not ask to not be here either. Birth and Death at this stage of evolution appear to our everyday senses to be thee only certain points in this
    maelstrom of "being alive." Thee word being is such a nice word, to be, to be in, being, a state of mind and/or body, it is a rather coumforting and seductive word. Yet like all words it has reverberations. Languages interfacing, wars and migrations cross fertilising, needs to do more than grunt, urges to express more than biological functions and pre-requisites.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:11 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Bill Dan: The Art of Balancing Rocks, and a quite wonderful MeFi thread on the subject.

    "Balance is a spiritual thing to me," he says, watching one of the rocks tumble down in a gust of wind. "It's being in touch, connecting, not just accepting, but giving back. Something nice happens to me when I do this. I see people's eyes enticed by the light of this, and then I know this is a beautiful thing."

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:04 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Monday, 29 November, 2004 }

    ragtime

    I have a love-hate relationship with cleaning house. I love the results, but I stall, balk and bargain before doing it. Sometimes, it's quick and sloppy. Sometimes, it's slow but tedious. Sometimes, it's just right; long enough to be thorough, bouncy enough to be fun.... sounds like something else that's more universally enjoyed. Anyway, today was one of those better than sex, full scale, redecorate as you go and sing real loud in your jammies kinda cleans. I even worked in some candle maintenance and rotated out the bathroom library.

    I love it.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:21 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Canadian authorities have arrested US President George W. Bush and charged him with offences under Canada's War Crimes Act. “This decision was not made lightly. But, it was also a decision that was impossible not to make. The United States is not outside the rule of law, and cannot expect to get an unlimited “free pass”. This decision puts a grave strain upon both our nations, and I urge calm and restraint from our American neighbours, as well as from Canadians. I have met with the cabinet, and with our colleagues in the House. This is a time of great crisis for us as a nation. But as people, we will survive this test. Earlier I enacted the Emergency War Powers Act. This is necessary to guarantee our domestic security. This is not a time for panic, for lawlessness, for anything other than a responsible and sobre focus on what lies immediately ahead..." Speculations on the American response run the spectrum from one analyst’s prediction of an all out American invasion of Canada to a more restrained pin-point rescue mission of the President. Whatever course of action is decided upon all experts are in agreement that the war in Iraq has so weakened the American military that it could be some days before the United States is ready to field a large scale military response.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:08 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    Codebreaker scores success in search for the Holy Grail

    For 250 years, the cryptic inscription has exercised the minds of Britain's finest theologians, historians and scientists, including Charles Darwin, Josiah Wedgwood and, most recently, the Second World War code-breakers of Bletchley Park. But an anonymous American researcher was credited yesterday with the best stab yet at what the letters D.O.U.O.S.V.A.V.V.M. - carved on the Shepherd's Monument at Lord Lichfield's Shugborough estate in Staffordshire - might actually signify.

    The answer appears to be "Jesus (As Deity) Defy" - a message left by an 18th century Christian sect Priory of Sion, which was forced to keep its views secret since the Church of England thought they were heretical. On first impressions, this rather perplexing answer may disappoint those who believed the letters pointed the way to the final destination of the Holy Grail, the cup Jesus is said to have used during the Last Supper. But Shugborough Hall was holding on to its hopes last night, since the Priory of Sion was the spiritual successor to the Knights Templar, who were known as the keepers of the Holy Grail.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:09 in Forteana, Phenomena & the Bizarre | | permalink



    Gaian Democracies

    In the midst of the prosperity and affluence of Western ‘democracies’ there is a pervasive sadness and sense of impotence about the future of our societies, of humanity and of the natural world. Many well-informed people have focused those negative feelings on the idea of‘globalisation’. For them the very term carries with it a sense of global despoliation, greed, oppression, injustice and irreparable loss. At the same time, many of us in the West are uncomfortably aware that the unprecedented material abundance we enjoy is being bought at the expense of the rest of the world’s peoples, natural resources and wildlife. Within the societies forced to pay the costs of today’s form of globalisation, tens of millions of citizens are seething with anger, envy and frustration.

    Yet today’s globalisation is but the latest—and hopefully temporary —phase of a globalising process that has been going on for thousands of years. In effect, we humans are a global species: we have evolved the capacity to inhabit virtually every corner of the planet. Thus some form of ‘globalisation’ is part of our destiny. What is in question is the form that human globalisation will take in its next manifestation.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:05 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Korean Scientists Succeed in Stem Cell Therapy (via FutureHi and MeFi)

    A team of Korean researchers claimed Thursday they had performed a miracle by enabling a patient, who could not even stand up for the last 19 years, to walk with stem cell therapy. During a press conference, the scientists said they had last month transplanted multi-potent stem cells from umbilical cord blood to the 37-year-old female patient suffering from a spinal cord injury and she can now walk on her own.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:02 in Health, Medicine & Bio-Happiness | | permalink



    { Sunday, 28 November, 2004 }

    three things i'm proud of today

  • I zealously guarded my leisure potential this weekend from certain untoward advances like chores and real world obligations. The sheer lack of doing anything I didn't want to do was nearly unprecedented, and rejuvenating. I would very much like to find a way to make this a perpetual thing, but certain socio-economic restrictions will likely continue to addle that whimsy.
  • Having thought I was done once, I went back and looked at the pdf of my new book and noted several corrections, which I'm extremely glad I caught before the proof. I added several illustrations as well to pages that formatted with too much white space, and I've got to say it looks great. As for the actual proof that will arrive in a few weeks, that's the real test. I've already started preliminary work on a third book, "Loafer's Glory," for which I already have a sweet potential offer.
  • I'm very pleased that, despite the chill in the air, the receding light, and the blitzkrieg toward the so-called holidays, I've been able to maintain an upbeat mood and a nearly giddy affect. I was skipping through my apartment today. Skipping. Now I will sashay and prance about here and there, but this little display hasn't happened like this in some time. I have no idea why I seem to be so happy, or at least stable and content, but I'd be a fool to question it too highly or to ask exactly what the chef put in the stew.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:25 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Antero Alli: The Secret Marriage of Art and Magick

    Imagine information as fresh experience -- spontaneous, unknown and alive -- rather than the perpetual accumulation of dead data. This breakthrough in creative thought eventually found its assimilation in twentieth century culture. What the scientist discovers through experiments, the artist experiences through new ways of perceiving, hearing, feeling and sensing. While Einstein made scientific history with his theory of relativity and Heisenberg with his uncertainty principle, the Surrealist "dada" revolution (Dali, Cocteau, Satie, etc.), James Joyce's omnicultural Finnegan's Wake, and the music of Jazz brought the living experience to the people. Both scientists and artists recognized this dynamic shift from a world view that was "predictable, solid and fixed" to a new vision of the universe simulatenously wilder, more plural, malleable and unfathomable. To those minds awakening from the slumber of nineteenth century "certainty" trance, so-called "reality" became a realm of immeasurable possibilities with countless interpretations. Any culture, or person, failing to assimilate this transformation into their perceptions and lives, remains in the past; it never enters the twentieth century let alone, the twenty-first.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:30 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    The Ench Fractal World Gallery

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:59 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Witness to a Tibetan Sky Burial

    After the chanting is over, we walk up a well-trodden path to a high ridge, keeping a respectful distance behind the funeral party, which has come all the way from Lhasa to discharge this final duty to their departed friend. The charnel ground, or durtro, consists of a large fenced meadow with a couple of temples and a large stone circle of stones at one end where the ceremony takes place. Prayer flags hang from numerous chortens, and scent of smoldering juniper purifies the air. Vultures circle overhead, and many more are clustered on the grass, a few meters from the funeral bier.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:46 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    { Saturday, 27 November, 2004 }

    for those gone awaiting return

    What once was lost To the plasma and thunder of the mind Persists still For those who dare To throw themselves into the brilliant light Of the enveloping, overarching soul Visible if you choose; Where time is naught And the only courage you need Is to think rightly And to trust in the provenance of love.

    jaybird found this for you @ 20:56 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Another Stonehenge Found in Russia?

    Russian archaeologists have announced that they have found the remains of a 4,000-year-old structure that they compare to England's Stonehenge, according to recent reports issued by Pravda and Novosti, two Russian news services. If the comparison holds true, the finding suggests that both ancient European and Russian populations held similar pagan beliefs that wove celestial cycles with human and animal life.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:06 in History, Civilization & Anthropology | | permalink



    Worldprocessor: An attempt to do justice to the term 'political' and 'geo-political' globe.
    Trying to tell the lie (of abstraction and visualization) that tells the truth.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:16 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Requiem for a Dreamer

    What follows is a conversation between Kurt Vonnegut and out-of-print science fiction writer Kilgore Trout. It was to be their last. Trout committed suicide by drinking Drano at midnight on October 15 in Cohoes, New York, after a female psychic using tarot cards predicted that the environmental calamity George W. Bush would once again be elected president of the most powerful nation on the planet by a five-to-four decision of the Supreme Court, which included “100 per-cent of the black vote.”

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:47 in Authors, Books & Words | | permalink



    { Friday, 26 November, 2004 }

    a song-ride home

    There's a slow piano on the radio
    As the moon fills the tumbing rivulets in the Swannanoa
    That vein that runs wild through these
    Granite and feldspar bosoms of mountain
    Keeping us alive as the opaque light from a concealed star
    Shines through the chords
    Of a quiet song about remembering.

    The road is new but I pave it with memory
    The gritty work of the brain
    Done best in the deep of the night and in-between the chorus
    And the bridge,
    That old stone one lane crossing into someone's uphill heart.
    To be in the autumn sunshine,
    A little kid on corduroy,
    Wondering what it will be like to be what I am now.

    A holiday of ruddy family faces,
    Drifting in and out of view, serving niceties on silver,
    Too big for a kid to understand, too tough to eat.
    Now, older, wizened and toughened,
    I am the same chracter in the wool sweater,
    Going to holiday parties with a glass just full enough,
    Nodding to the beat of language and laughter,
    Smiling at the right times, feeling for the keys in my pocket.

    This winding road, it's enchanting;
    Each curve brings me to another year,
    Each raspy note of the singer's voice
    Contains another vision from the catalog of years,
    Dog-eared and worn because the pages
    Are revisited eternally in the mind
    Running muddy-shoed through the dreamhome of lost family.

    The feast is over, sleep is coming,
    The river moves on and the station tunes to static.
    I pretend to know the lyrics and the finger-dance over
    The thought of the song's sway.
    Truly, we're all learning to play,
    The instrument is ourselves,
    The breath is long ago,
    But the harmony belongs to the shore and rock
    Of the soul, a kid and a weathered face at once,
    A moon-soaked ride, and opening the door.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:19 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Wild horses, in pictures , detail, and recent news.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:45 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    The chances of an impact being captured on film are millions to one. "If this is true, it's one of the most remarkable pictures ever taken..." Meteorite 'photographed' hitting Earth

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:47 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Pigeons 'sense magnetic field'

    Homing pigeons use the Earth's magnetic field to navigate their way home over long distances, scientists writing in Nature magazine claim. The pigeons probably use tiny magnetic particles in their beaks to sense our planet's magnetic field, scientists say

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:30 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Thursday, 25 November, 2004 }

    On Dreams by Aristotle [via MeFi]

    He will sometimes, in the moment of awakening, surprise the images which present themselves to him in sleep, and find that they are really but movements lurking in the organs of sense. And indeed some very young persons, if it is dark, though looking with wide open eyes, see multitudes of phantom figures moving before them, so that they often cover up their heads in terror.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:41 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Mother's the word

    Think about the word mother: does it make you burst into a fantastic smile as you think of the woman you will love with a passion for all eternity, she who guides your destiny towards freedom, liberty and perhaps tranquility?
    If your answer is yes, you will have embraced your mum and the 10 English words that came top in a survey of favourites conducted by the British Council.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:02 in Authors, Books & Words | | permalink



    today

    Goodness, it's flurrying out the misted window.
    I didn't expect that.
    I'm thankful.

    It's is cold even in here but I have this great purple blanket.
    It's getting tattered fast.
    I'm thankful.

    I'm out of omelet ingredients, so I'll just fry an egg.
    Something simple.
    I'm thankful.

    The cat was found to be alright at the vet's the other day.
    She's nestled into a ball, sleeping warm.
    I'm thankful.

    I was hoarding hot sauce packets to avoid buying a bottle.
    Times were tight these past two weeks.
    I'm thankful.

    Such wonderful dreams last night.
    My best friend and I in London.
    I'm thankful.

    Robin's mother is having us over for today's feast.
    It's somewhere to go.
    I'm thankful.

    I'm out of the mind-numbing funk I was in a few days ago.
    Lots of sleep helped.
    I'm thankful.

    I've run out of time and have to get ready.
    The wind beckons time foreword.
    I'm thankful.

    jaybird found this for you @ 09:55 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 24 November, 2004 }

    You can follow all of the breaking news from the Ukraine on the wonderful blog Le Sabot Post-Moderne.

    You have to understand the situation in Ukraine. The country is run by a series of oligarchic clans that actually found their beginnings in the Soviet Union, and then grew fabulously rich during the early days of "privatization".

    Compare the situation to Russia, where an authoritarian Putin faced off against corrupt oligarchs. In Ukraine, authoritarianism and oligarchy are fused. Yanukovych isn't just another unscrupulous candidate, he's the main man of Akhmetov -- the duke of Donetsk and the richest man in Ukraine. The current president, Kuchma, is the head of a different clan, Dnepropetrovsk. The presidential administrator is Medvedchuk, who happens to run the Kiev-based Medvedchuk-Surkis clan. He also owns the two biggest Ukrainian TV stations, which is awfully convenient.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:09 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Plantage is a bizarrely beautiful flash based music video for the Dutch band Under Byen. The tune is very Bjork-like, and the video adds to the melodious melancholy while wandering through the tiny details of a mystical green forest.

    Meanwhile, I can't stop watching this video (QT), and the rest of the videos directed by Ruben Fleischer are rather punchy too. I'm not really big into this genre (bit that's changing with the increasing thoughtfulness of the content) but this director has a really good eye...

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:45 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Dolphins save swimmers from shark

    A pod of dolphins circled protectively round a group of New Zealand swimmers to fend off an attack by a great white shark... "They started to herd us up, they pushed all four of us together by doing tight circles around us..."

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:41 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    Nature Series No. 23: How to tell the Birds from the Flowers

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:37 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 23 November, 2004 }

    What is EPIC 2014? An interesting take on the future of information. (flash)

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:40 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Places of mystery

    Ask about Kituluni hill in Machakos District and people are likely to take you aside and talk in hushed tones about strange goings-on, witchcraft and sightings of ghosts dressed in white. You will be told about happenings that stand Isaac Newton’s Law of Gravity on its head, such as water flowing uphill. Some 300 kilometres away from this spot, in Nakuru, equally unlikely stories are told about a mystery cave in the Menengai Crater.

    Few places in Kenya, indeed in the world, are without their own stranger-than-fiction stories that defy logical explanation. Outsiders might dismiss them out of hand, but local people hold on to them with a firm conviction.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:40 in Forteana, Phenomena & the Bizarre | | permalink



    angelhead

    !cid_image001.jpg@01C4CADF[1].jpg

    The most beloved queen of my heart, Ursula, goes into the vet today to determine the cause of her possible seizures and disorientation. In the past few days, she's been nearly normal, but with a lot more sleeping. I'm hoping it was a passing allergic reaction or a bad batch of 'nip, and she is asthma prone. So, a big question mark will be hanging over me today while a dentist scrapes at my teeth and I surf the post-anesthetic work tide.

    If you've got a sec, send a good vibe to my most wonderful friend (and one-time presidential candidate) Ursula, the queen of bizarre pet names, my "fat sauce," my "lazy bucket," my "angel head."

    UPDATE: She came back happy and fluffed out, all tests normal, and the vet said "things like that happen sometimes." I guess they do, and thank Creator this is likely not to recur.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:40 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Monday, 22 November, 2004 }

    Peter Carroll: Chaoism & Chaos Magic

    Since the eighteenth century European enlightenment, a belief has grown to the point where it is now so all-pervasive, and so fundamental a part of the Western world view, that one is generally considered mad if one questions it. This is a belief that has proved so powerful and useful that virtually everyone in the Western world accept it without question. Even those who try to maintain a belief in "God" tend to place more actual faith in this new belief for most practical purposes. I am about to reveal what this fundamental contemporary belief is. Most of you will think it is so obvious a fact that it can, hardly be called a belief. That, however, is a measure of its extraordinary power over us. Most of you will think me a madman or a fool to even question it. Few of you will be able to imagine what it would be like not to believe it, or that it would be possible to replace it with something else. Here it is: the dominant belief in all Western Cultures is that this universe runs on material causality and is thus comprehensible to reason. Virtually everyone also maintains a secondary belief that contradicts this - the belief that they have something called free will, although they are unable to specify what this is...

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:47 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    2004 weblog awards

    Bird on the Moon has been nominated (rather, has nominated itself) for Best of the 3500-5000 Weblogs category for the 2004 Weblog Awards. When you think about it, it's not the worst traffic ranking. In fact, with something like six million blogs out there, 'tain't too shabby. I don't know if that makes me a 'B' or 'C' blogger or not, but I'll take any letter as I love what I do and do it for my pleasure and the pleasure of my readers. Yeah, yeah, I'm into self-gratification, everyone does it. Anyway, traffic here has more than doubled since this time last year with something like 1.8 million visitors from 175 countries since our messy birth. Our 6 out of 10 Google page rank is rather a proud mark, too.

    The site will be open for voting after the nomination round. At which time, I will call upon my loose band of loyal brigands to get thee to the voting page and do your duty. We celebrate two years of blogitude in February and will call upon all good readers to come to the aid of this wacky bucket of ephemera and personal puddle of well-intentioned brain matter. While I might not always have the time to go personal here, I deeply appreciate all the great feedback I get from all the peeps out there in Interwebland.

    Do check out the other award nominees here. They are all excellent and one of them, Third World View, has been a favorite of mine for a while now and is lovingly linked in the sidebar. In the meantime, any housekeeping and design suggestions would be welcome as we prepare to spruce the place up for guests in white gloves.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:17 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    The Cosmic Serpent, DNA and the Origins of Knowledge: Q&A with Jeremy Narby

    Q: Your hypothesis of a hidden intelligence contained within the DNA of all living things is interesting. What is this intelligence?

    A: Intelligence comes from the Latin inter-legere, to choose between. There seems to be a capacity to make choices operating inside each cell in our body, down to the level of individual proteins and enzymes. DNA itself is a kind of "text" that functions through a coding system called "genetic code," which is strikingly similar to codes used by human beings. Some enzymes edit the RNA transcript of the DNA text and add new letters to it; any error made during this editing can be fatal to the entire organism; so these enzymes are consistently making the right choices; if they don't, something often goes wrong leading to cancer and other diseases. Cells send one another signals, in the form of proteins and molecules. These signals mean: divide, or don't divide, move, or don't move, kill yourself, or stay alive. Any one cell is listening to hundreds of signals at the same time, and has to integrate them and decide what to do. How this intelligence operates is the question.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:33 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Of Mice, Men and In-Between

    In Minnesota, pigs are being born with human blood in their veins. In Nevada, there are sheep whose livers and hearts are largely human. In California, mice peer from their cages with human brain cells firing inside their skulls. They are real creations of real scientists, stretching the boundaries of stem cell research.

    Biologists call these hybrid animals chimeras, after the mythical Greek creature with a lion's head, a goat's body and a serpent's tail. They are the products of experiments in which human stem cells were added to developing animal fetuses. Chimeras are allowing scientists to watch, for the first time, how nascent human cells and organs mature and interact -- not in the cold isolation of laboratory dishes but inside the bodies of living creatures. Some are already revealing deep secrets of human biology and pointing the way toward new medical treatments.

    Yeah, this puzzles the ethicist in me. While not as grotesque as vivisection nor as outwardly brazen as cloning or species-blending, producing intentional chimeras with human attributes seems to be a bold teeter-totter tightrope walk on the playing board of the God game. Yet, we must ask ourselves: which side offers the greatest benefit?

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:29 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Hakim Bey: New Primitives

    Luddism as a tactic has much to recommend it: -- on the local level, machine-smashing can actually accomplish something. Even one or two nuclear reactors have been shut down by "sabotage" (legal, political, or actual) -- and one can always gain at least a moment of satisfaction with a wooden shoe or a monkey wrench.

    On a "global" level however -- the "strategic" level -- the totality of the neo-primitive critique of the totality itself begins to take on a disturbing air of -- totalitarianism. This can bee seen most clearly in certain strains of "deep" ecology and "ecofascism", but it remains an inherent problem even in the most "left-wing" strains of primitivism. The puritan impulse -- purification, the realization of purity -- imparts a certain rigidity and aggression to all possible actions on behalf of such a total critique. This must seem especially the case when the critique extents beyond, say, urban civilization (or "History") into the "prehistoric" realm of art, music, techné, language, and symbolic mediation itself.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:23 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    { Sunday, 21 November, 2004 }

    Party People at the End of Time

    As a perceptual organism embedded in 4 dimensions, I record existence. My recording range is only limited by the range of the senses. Whether memory is total or fragmentary I continuously receive and categorize data, tagging memories with associative relationships to smells, emotions, feelings, etc... and logging them into the holographic library of experience. Yet there is some evidence to suggest that the brain records everything that's perceived, filling huge volumes of memory with even the most minute details. Who knows what the storage capacity of the holographic brain might be but it surely dwarfs even the greatest giga-terabit computers. It may even be infinite.

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:07 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    This one's for you, Joshua: Good news for causality

    Physicists in Switzerland have confirmed that information cannot be transmitted faster than the speed of light. Nicolas Gisin and colleagues at the University of Geneva have shown that the "group velocity" of a laser pulse in an optical fibre can travel faster than the speed of light but that the "signal velocity" - the speed at which information travels - cannot.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:38 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Gallery of Usko-Ayar art

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:45 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Saturday, 20 November, 2004 }

    happy birthday, joshua

    jg-w29.jpg

    "You can't stop time; you can only hop on, hotwire it, learn the controls, and joy ride through creation 'til you get caught." ~Isadore Upinsky

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:26 in | | permalink



    Music and the Brain

    ...in recent years we have begun to gain a firmer understanding of where and how music is processed in the brain, which should lay a foundation for answering evolutionary questions. Collectively, studies of patients with brain injuries and imaging of healthy individuals have unexpectedly uncovered no specialized brain "center" for music. Rather music engages many areas distributed throughout the brain, including those that are normally involved in other kinds of cognition. The active areas vary with the person's individual experiences and musical training. The ear has the fewest sensory cells of any sensory organ--3,500 inner hair cells occupy the ear versus 100 million photoreceptors in the eye. Yet our mental response to music is remarkably adaptable; even a little study can "retune" the way the brain handles musical inputs.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:52 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    It is what it is: web zen

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:50 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    { Friday, 19 November, 2004 }

    I'm home, and quite happy for it. Regular fun resumes tomorrow,

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:09 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    A 60 Acre Web of Mystery

    For reasons that area scientists don't really understand, millions and millions of tiny black spiders called Halorates ksenius - they have no common name - became trapped in Russell Jervis' clover field and started spinning webs.

    And this is the last post from Greensboro, I'm heading home this afternoon. It's been a really fun training and it really makes me want to go back to school. Nonetheless, I'm really ready to get home... regular posting resumes tomorrow.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:39 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Thursday, 18 November, 2004 }

    There is nothing wring in the whole wide world: man methodically arranged tens of thousands of books in San Fran bookstore in order of the cover and binding color, specacular results. More info. (via MeFi)

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:29 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Grand Illusions, a site for the enquiring mind.
    With optical illusions, scientific toys, visual effects, and even a little magic.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:15 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Investing in their future: Beavers weave stolen cash into dam

    A bag of bills stolen from a casino was snapped up by beavers who wove thousands of dollars in soggy currency into the sticks and brush of their dam on a creek in eastern Louisiana.

    Way to go, lil' buddy.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:49 in High Weirdness | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 17 November, 2004 }

    This is a moblog* post:

    At a rather glamorous bar; a bit outside my comfort zone, all for the sake of expanding my comfort zone.


    *Moblogging is posting from a cellphone or other wireless device- if a picture, it's taken from the phone.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:27 in Live from the road... | | permalink



    Out for a possibly adventurous night in a foreign town; solo. Have fun y'all.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:30 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    By energizing the forces of reaction, George W. Bush has sown the seeds of defeat for his party: We Won, You Just Don't Know It Yet

    Given his expanded majorities in Congress, Bush will likely get most of what he wants--and therein lies another danger for him. If he governs as his base demands, his second term will be a disaster. His zealously uncompromising fundamentalist supporters are loudly demanding a far-right Supreme Court that would be wildly out of step with the American middle. Though a majority of Americans support choice, Bush's base is determined to overturn Roe v. Wade. Moderate Republicans like Arlen Specter, terrified of a massive backlash if Bush's Christian soldiers get what they want, is already feeling their sting. Karl Rove made a Faustian bargain with these people. It worked in the short term, aiding Bush's reelection. Now they want payback, and Bush will be forced to deliver.

    Let us hope so. The greater the uncompromising hubris of the right wing, the more problematic, and politically perilous, Bush's second term will be. All of the Republican talk of a mandate-echoed by a subservient national media--is a fatal misreading of what happened on November 2. The fundamental post-welfare state reality is that there are two minority parties in America, divided mostly by culture: the Republicans, who hold the ideological allegiance of roughly a third of the electorate, built on a core base of white evangelical Christians and lower-middle class voters, particularly in the South, and the Democrats, who have roughly the same size following, drawn from the well educated and minorities, particularly on the coasts. The party that wins elections is the one that induces greater motility in the non-ideological third in the middle.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:29 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    three nights of dreams

    1) We were in this bizarre funhouse, which led to an irridescent, mineral filled cavern. Something about a lost cubscout troop. Much more going on than I recall, but the interesting levels and colors of the funhouse stick with me. Oh yeah, there were frogs and monkeys thrown in for good measure.

    2) A jewel-encrusted skull was missing, and I was in this ancient hulk of rust farm truck to track it down. I went down this old country road where people were complaining that their lawn chairs had vanished as well. I climbed a tree by a patch of lawn furniture, to wait out the possible villian, and sure enough, a demon-shadow emerged from the scrub to haul off the booty. I dropped a net on the thing, and after a puff of acrid smoke, all that remained was a jewel-encrusted skull. Glad for having found it, I forgot to whom the former brain cavity belonged. So, I mounted it on the dashboard of the truck and turned up the dance music.

    3) I suppose it all started with the purchase of a strange, sawdust filled patchwork robotic cat. I was (and am) away from home and it was meant to be a surrogate for the cats at home I miss so much. Anyway, this thing was so lifelike in its mannerisms that it startled me. I apparently had a 'big day' the next day and settled with the delicate sawdust-driven freindly feline patchwork golem, and went to sleep. At some point in my sleep, the thing was in distress and I awoke to find it transformed, "real," and coughing up a hairball.

    I was already late and went out the door, to the newly remodeled home of a new tenant of my landlord's. The 'home,' for those of you familiar with downtown Asheville, was the Mellow Mushroom on Broadway. It was beatifully renovated, with plenty of lofts, interesting alcoves and staircases. The new tenant was a flaming circus ringleader. After a few minutes in the party-like atmosphere, I didn't feel well and attempted to excuse myself. He wouldn't let me leave. My car was parked at a very awkward angle and was surrounded by his clowns, midgets, bendy-stretchy people and impossibly large stunt poodles. I got in and angled the car out, and the horde wouldn't let up, all the while the circus leader is taunting me. I gun the car through the crowd, harming none, and drove to New York for a late-night tour of cathedrals.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:45 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 16 November, 2004 }

    Encyclopedia Mythica: a massive compendium of mythology, folklore, and religion. "It currently contains over 6,100 entries on gods and goddesses, heroes, legendary creatures and beings from all over the world."

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:18 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    Dear God...

    Poverty and unemployment are on the rise and 45 million Americans are living without health insurance. Although our elected officials refuse to acknowledge the irreversible and irrefutable damage being done to the planet we have now thoroughly trashed, there is a really big elephant residing in America’s ecological living room. OK, so I may be a bit of a downer and I’m not the most fun at a party these days, but it’s not all my fault. It’s kind of hard to be jovial during such times of duress. So what’s the deal? Are you angry? Is it something we did or didn’t do? Or is this some sort of test? Obviously we’re failing miserably if it is.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:12 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Powerful story, and accompanying slideshow: Coming Out for One of Their Own

    The fliers arrived three weeks ago. Some came over the fax machines of local churches, and others appeared mysteriously around town. Printed in bold was the heading "Westboro Baptist Church." No seeming cause for alarm. Sand Springs, population 18,500, is a Christian stronghold in the gently rolling hills of eastern Oklahoma.

    But the message that followed was a rant against a 17-year-old Sand Springs resident named Michael Shackelford and his mother, Janice, the subjects of a recent Washington Post series examining Michael's struggles as a young gay man in the Bible Belt. The fliers posted a photo of Michael, called him a "doomed teenage fag" and announced that followers of Westboro Baptist in Topeka were on their way from Kansas to stage antigay protests in Sand Springs.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:53 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    { Monday, 15 November, 2004 }

    The Joy of Sexual Physics

    As we have seen before, very strange things happen at speeds close to the speed of light. In the article to which you refer, we saw that if your boyfriend was oscillating on top of you at a speed close to the speed of light, then due to the relativistic theory of length contraction, his penis would get shorter and shorter the faster he went. At the speed of light, this would lead to an interesting paradox in which you would see his penis having no length at all, but would still be managing to have sex with it.

    Sometimes, that really is the best thing, theoretically speaking...

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:55 in Carnality, Naughtiness & Fun | | permalink



    This is a moblog* post:

    11006187550027.jpg

    Mirrored sunset


    *Moblogging is posting from a cellphone or other wireless device- if a picture, it's taken from the phone.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:34 in Live from the road... | | permalink



    I'm off to stay the week away for work's sake yet again; this time, it's not the (s)election I'm worried about leaving behind, it's my cat Ursula. This morning she had a seizure or something like it, enough to essentially take a day off to be with her. She's perfectly herself right now, and seems fine, but it's hard to go right now.

    Luckily, good people (in fact, the best) will be looking after her. Perhaps you, too, will send a little love her way.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:20 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    For about the hundredth time: Lost city of Atlantis found?

    An American researcher claimed Sunday to have discovered the remains of the legendary lost city of Atlantis on the bottom of the east Mediterranean Sea. But Cyprus' chief government archaeologist was skeptical. Robert Sarmast said sonar scanning of the seabed between east Cyprus and Syria revealed man-made walls, one as long as 3 kilometers , and trenches at a depth of 1,500 meters.

    Obviously, there are many things now under the sea that weren't before, this is a good example along with structures off the coast of Cuba, Japan, UK and Egypt. I think what we're looking at here is yet another culture that thrived before sea levels rose after the last ice age, not a dramatically sinking mythic continent (itself a rather radical position). I do believe there is enough anecdotal evidence that some kind of an Atlantis-type place existed, but it's now mostly a state of mind, one whivh is filled beautifully with generations of hope that once, there was an ideal society.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:09 in Forteana, Phenomena & the Bizarre | | permalink



    File in the 'waiting for an animated film adaptation department:' Couple Helps Fox; Fox Then Brings Friend

    Shirley Tompkins and her husband Bob began helping a wounded fox last winter. Now a second also is showing up at their trailer.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:57 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Sunday, 14 November, 2004 }

    rainbow over crossroads; pleasantly stranded in the infinite

    detail_82866_back.jpgdetail_82866.jpg

    Folks, my second book is within inches of final print publication. I'm just waiting for the ISBN number and my author's proof to proceed. If you're one of the geek elite who prefers pixels to pages, a download version is available now for nearly ten smackers off the nifty cover price of $17.77.

    Either way, the print version will be available for the holiday season if you're looking for a great gag gift. If you're really interested in the download option, email me via the contact page and I'll send you the link.

    It feels neat to finally be done with this project. You'll notice there hasn't been much in the creative writin' department over here, and this has been why. It's taken quite a bit of my time and creative juices to slap this puppy together. Now that it's done, provided there are no editorial disasters, I can begin to retool my brain to dribble out content in more customary ways.

    Thanks all who have supported me in this, thanks to all who bought the first (editorially challenged) book, and thanks to the team assembled to help promote this work and give it some rainbow legs...

    jaybird found this for you @ 20:00 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Macrocosmic Symmetry

    In considering the recent discovery that cosmological expansion is accelerating toward the extreme physics of absolute zero, science is understandably at a loss for conceptual representation of the distant future. Cosmology is in an unprecedented adjustment period since the absolute zero future we are being forced to consider was previously ruled impossible.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:07 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Our Special Sun, via Sentient Developments.

    Every second, our sun converts about 5 million tons of mass into energy; Earth intercepts only a billionth of this energy...

    ...our sun is situated in the galactic habitable zone, which boasts two major characteristics: i) a region fairly devoid of interstellar matter, and ii) a region rich in metallicity (the outer stars lack critical heavier elements which assist in the creation of life)

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:05 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    happy trails, gustav

    gustav_web.jpg

    My most wonderful friend and compadre of the cosmic Gustav has returned from whence he came, California, where he'll even kiss a sunset pig. I'd like to send him out a song, one which rings through my mind as I imagine him under a ribbon of highway, homeward bound.

    I raise my glass to you, brother, and sing...

    It's a long and dusty road It's a hot and heavy load And the folks I meet ain't always kind Some are bad and some are good Some have done the best they could Some have tried to ease my trouble in mind

    And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
    Where I'm bound
    I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

    I've been wandering through this land just doing the best I can
    Trying to find what I was meant to do
    And the people that I see
    Look as worried as can be
    And it looks like they are wondering, too

    And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
    Where I'm bound
    I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

    And I had me a buddy back home
    But he started out to roam
    And I hear he's out by Frisco Bay
    And sometimes when I've had a few
    His old voice comes ringing through
    And I'm going out to see him some old day

    And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
    Where I'm bound
    I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

    If you see me passing by
    And you sit and you wonder why
    And you wish that you were a rambler, too
    Nail your shoes to the kitchen floor
    Lace 'em up and bar the door
    Thank your stars for the roof that's over you

    And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
    Where I'm bound
    I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

    jaybird found this for you @ 00:35 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Saturday, 13 November, 2004 }

    Masters of Deception

    A collection profiling the work of over fifteen optical illusion artists (Giuseppe Arcimboldo, Salvador Dalí, Sandro Del Prete, Jos De Mey, M.C. Escher, Robert Gonsalves, Matheau Haemakers, Ken Knowlton, Scott Kim, Guido Moretti, Vik Muniz, Istvan Orosz, John Pugh, Oscar Reutersvärd, Roger Shepard, Dick Termes, Rex Whistler), profiling their work in depth.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:35 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Yankee Hotel Foxtrot: since an NPR report on this last night, I've been having too much fun with this: Recordings of Shortwave Numbers Stations, and the crazy, great work of cryptohunter Akin Hernandez.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:29 in Cosmic Randomness Grab Bag | | permalink



    Scenes from Alfred Hitchcock films recreated in mosaic.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:19 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Friday, 12 November, 2004 }

    Inside The Election Fraud Battle

    John Kerry was faced with three options. One, fight on publicly rather than conceding and put the nation into a media frenzied limbo. Two, concede and go on with his life, turning his back on his promise to his supporters to ensure that “every vote will be counted.” Most people are assuming that John Kerry opted for the second of these while John Edwards, his runningmate, opted for the first, and since Kerry was the big dog, he won out. But people who think this are thinking in Bush terms, all or nothing, either you are for the war or against it, that either Senator Kerry was for recounting the votes or he was against it. The reality is, John Kerry has chosen a third, much smarter course – just as he said he would all along. John Kerry realized that to launch a public campaign calling the vote into question would be disastrous. In fact, he likely realized he would we walking right into a Bush-set booby trap.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:45 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    The $3bn Bush bypass

    Michael Oppenheimer, a climate change researcher at Princeton University in New Jersey, is mulling over the morale of fellow scientists following the re-election of George W Bush. "Let me put it like this," he says. "No one I know is happy." It's an observation echoed by many American scientists, not least those who threw their weight behind the rare campaign of protest in the run-up to the vote. Whether they were critical of the administration's restrictive policy on stem cell research; its lack of action on global warming; the prospect of drilling for oil in the pristine Arctic wildlife refuge, or the twisting of scientific data to suit a political agenda, scientists were largely united in their opposition to President Bush winning four more years in the White House.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:47 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Onward Tibet is a beautiful gallery of images and sounds from a trek to that magical (yet occupied) land of ancient knowledge.

    While the photos on this website present an image of Tibet as a peaceful, serene land filled with beauty and joy, the reality that lies beneath could not be further from that. The ability of Tibetans to be a fundamentally joyful, peaceful, and welcoming people, while continuing their day to day struggle to survive, serves as a primary inspiration for both the work I do for Tibet, as well as in my own personal life.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:45 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    The festival of Diwali starts today:

    It is the gayest of the festivals; an occasion of great excitement and rejoicing. The original form of Diwali comes from the word "DEEPAWALI" which means "row of lights"... Diwali celebrations are especially a time for telling stories about Vishnu and his wife Lakshmi, and about Krishna, Rama and his wife Sita.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:41 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    { Thursday, 11 November, 2004 }

    Do little people go to heaven?

    When they showed on television the cave on the island of Flores where the remains of little people had been found, I felt, I admit, a Yeatsian frisson that the world of politics cannot give. It was not delight at a new branch on the hat-stand of anthropoid evolution, but the thought that in the thick Indonesian rainforest there were (or had been, perhaps as recently as the time when dodos lived) creatures with whom we could converse, but which were not men.

    The appetite for talking to other creatures is amply exemplified by our often exasperated one-sided conversations: ‘Get off the bloody table, Tigger, there’s a good cat.’ The very existence of pets as a sort of imaginary friend shows how reluctant humans are to be alone among the frightening emptinesses of Paschalian space. The exciting news was that the folk tales of green men, little people, wood-dwellers, might be based on fact... Would these Floresians be in the image and likeness of God too, with immortal souls to be saved or lost, capable of praying to God and going to heaven?

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:38 in Conjecture & Speculation | | permalink



    Feynman, Davies and Wheeler: three physicists dancing on the head of an electron.

    ...when a proton and an antiproton collide and annihilate, what has really happened is that one particle has reversed its direction in Time.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:33 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    A world, melting: reports on the Arctic impact of global warming, happening right now:

    The study said the annual average amount of sea ice in the Arctic has decreased by about 8 percent in the past 30 years, resulting in the loss of 386,100 square miles of sea ice - an area bigger than Texas and Arizona combined.

    [snip]

    As much as a third of all species will be extinct by 2050 by some estimates... bears, walruses and some seals are on their way to extinction, warns the report, which was released Monday at an international science meeting in Reykjavik, Iceland. Summer sea ice may disappear entirely and, combined with a rapidly melting Greenland ice sheet, will likely help raise the world's sea levels 3 feet by 2100, swamping homes from Florida to Bangladesh.

    [snip]

    The one thing I do know about global warming is this: It wasn't a topic of debate in the presidential election. No one was talking - not in any depth - about how climate change may affect the world and our relationship to the rest of the world. No one was debating strategies for dealing with climate change. It just wasn't on the agenda. Today, we're all running around squawking about "moral values." That debate centers on how we live with one another. How we live with nature is another "moral value" and, perhaps, we might want to start thinking about it a little more seriously than we have been.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:25 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 10 November, 2004 }

    One Act Festival

    Tonight, the one act play I've been directing, "Duet for Bear and Dog," makes it's cutesy-poetic-poignantly funny debut, along with a monologue I've been working on by Lord Buckley, called "God's Own Drunk." I'll post pics later...

    My thanks to a great cast!

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:55 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    Supping At The Angel & Feathers , via Key23

    We are drawn from these shadows: not as monads, self-existent and eternally enduring; but as transient ripples of consciousness which flow outwards, melding and coalescing with other ripples. In this incessant weaving amidst the continuum of consciousness, self and not-self mingle and fuse, slipping back and forth, trespassing want only across apparent boundaries which have always been fluid.

    To become alive to this transience seems an extraordinary thing; yet it is the most natural state in the world. It is a measure of how we have cut ourselves off from reality - drawn the covers over our heads and huddled in our ghettos. Initiation is a vitriol, dissolving the illusion of separateness. Only in recognising individuality as illusion, and ceasing to cling to it, can we see past what we are not, to the fecund infinity of that which we really are.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:25 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    The stolen election of 2004 courtesy of Electronic Voting:

    In a cynical view, and one that is likely accurate, the election of 2004 may have been nothing more than an elaborate trial balloon, a "good cop-bad cop" theater that is mandated every few years to uphold the appearance of legitimacy. Our candidates lie, all the while gauging the effectiveness of long-term manipulation programs. They think, are the people still gullible and uninformed? What slogans and illusions can we fool them with? Is the "war on terrorism" mindset still unwavering? How far can we push them? Will they accept the baseball bat in the face, or the velvet glove to the nose?

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:19 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Arundhati Roy: Peace?...

    If you think about it, this is an alarming shift of paradigm. The difference is that notions of equality, of parity have been pried loose and eased out of the equation. It's a process of attrition. Almost unconsciously, we begin to think of justice for the rich and human rights for the poor. Justice for the corporate world, human rights for its victims. Justice for Americans, human rights for Afghans and Iraqis. Justice for the Indian upper castes, human rights for Dalits and Adivasis (if that.) Justice for white Australians, human rights for Aboriginals and immigrants (most times, not even that.)

    It is becoming more than clear that violating human rights is an inherent and necessary part of the process of implementing a coercive and unjust political and economic structure on the world...

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:07 in Authors, Books & Words | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 09 November, 2004 }

    In search of the albino elephant

    "The white elephant is the God Saman's vehicle which he used when he came to Sri Lanka in the Ratnapura area. The Lord Buddha's mother also dreamt of a white elephant before his conception. We believe the white elephant only appears once every 12 years and it's seen as an auspicious sign," he says.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:10 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    Gay community fears new era of intolerance

    Some campaign speeches verged on tub-thumping hatred. In Oklahoma Tom Coburn warned of lesbians invading school bathrooms. In South Carolina Jim Demint said openly gay teachers should be banned from schools. In Florida Mel Martinez, the former Bush housing secretary, called his opponent, in reality unsupported of gay rights, a 'darling of the homosexual extremists'.

    I'd love to meet a homosexual extremist. Someone who is so utterly gay as to be 'extreme.' I hear tell they travel in packs and spontaneously erupt into hour long "Vogue" sessions, frightening the children and making even the most straight man succumb to momentary titillation.

    Yeah, we're only extreme, as Patrick Henry said it, "in the defense of liberty." And that's not a gay thing, it's a human thing. Get over it.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:17 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    How the Far Right Built a Media Empire to Manufacture Consent

    ...for the past quarter century or so, the conservatives and Republicans had been working very assiduously to build their own media infrastructure. Much of that came out of the bitterness they felt after the Watergate ouster of Richard Nixon, the defeat in Vietnam, which they blamed in some part on elements of the American public that had turned against the war. So, the conservatives went out, very -- (and we know their -- we have their thinking and their writings on this) to build their own establishment and in large part to build their own media. They began with money from conservative foundations, later on Reverend Moon stepped in with hundreds of millions of dollars that he brought in for the Washington Times and other publications. Later on, the talk radio came into this, and eventually FOX news. So it's really almost a -- a vertically integrated media infrastructure that the conservatives now have, and it reaches across the country.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:06 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Monday, 08 November, 2004 }

    "Frost Flowers" occur when still-living green plant tissue freezes and the sap is extruded in long, unbroken strands.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:12 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    Robert Anton Wilson: Reality Ain't What It Used To Be, Thirty-five years after Bell's Theorem

    Bell's Theorem, a mathematical demonstration by physicist John Stewart Bell published in 1964, has become more popular than Tarot cards with New Agers, who think they understand it but generally don't. Meanwhile it remains controversial with physicists, some of whom think they understand it, while others frankly admit they find it as perplexing as a chimpanzee in a Beethoven string quartet.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:34 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    See it, believe it: i'll find my frog

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:07 in Radical Undertakings | | permalink



    Steve Silberman: Our Traditional Non-Traditional Wedding

    As I read through the post-mortems of the 2004 election speculating about whether the gay marriage issue cost John Kerry his presidency -- with many Democrats supporting this view -- I have the disoriented feeling of reading about my sweet, ordinary life with Keith distorted through funhouse mirrors. When writer Bill Bennett places gay marriage in opposition to "ethical values" and a "decent society," as he did in the National Review the day after the election, does he mean us? Apparently so. By now, the concept of marriages like ours has been twisted into such an abstract threat to so many otherwise fine and compassionate people -- and so divorced from the humble blessing of two souls caring deeply for one another -- it's time for a national reality check.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:11 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    { Sunday, 07 November, 2004 }

    The Critical Psychology Project:Transforming Society and Transforming Psychology

    ...in common with many self-defined "critical" approaches in disciplines such as sociology and law, our ultimate political goal is to help bring about a radically better society. Using psychological insights to evaluate, synthesize, and extend competing perspectives, critical psychology explicitly or implicitly envisions what this fundamentally better society might look like and how we might help bring it about. Our assumptions, conclusions, and speculations often take us beyond the relatively minor reforms advocated by politically liberal mainstream psychologists. Although we may never reach our ultimate goal, it provides a fluid working model today as we try to learn better how to expose and oppose injustice, oppression, and other institutional barriers to a meaningful life.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:04 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    18825429.jpg

    Beautiful Phtography from Ladakh

    More on Ladakh:

  • A travel diary through Ladakh
  • History, religion and landscape
  • Another westerner in a strange and beautiful land

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:27 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    Lord Buckley's historical accounting of the life of Gandhi:

    He wailed India. He gassed India. He grooved India. Now I'm gonna tell you why. Ya see India was bugged wid da lion. Every time India gets a little extra scoff in the cupboard, wham! here come the lion. Chomp! Swoop the scene and there stand the poor Indians, scoffless. Bugged them to death.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:36 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Saturday, 06 November, 2004 }

    The Chemistry of Autumn Colors

    jaybird found this for you @ 20:12 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Whitman, Jones, Chavez, Terkel, Berry, Truth, Ali, Edelman, Wellstone, and currently many wounded shadow leaders and thinkers of this divided nation are all Americans Who Tell the Truth

    "The best way to get the sons of bitches is to make people laugh at them." ~Molly Ivins

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:04 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    A nuclear physicist takes a unique look at our universe according to God and Einstein: Seeing God in the Physics Lab

    Consider: In one mix of protons, neutrons and electrons I get a grain of sand. I take the same protons, neutrons and electrons, put them together in a different mix and get a brain that can record facts, produce emotions, and from which emerges a mind that integrates those facts and emotions -- and experiences that integration as joy. It's the same protons, neutrons and electrons. They did not get a face-lift, yet one combination seems passive while the other is dynamically alive.From where does this consciousness arise? Just which proton is feeling the joy or anguishing over the pain as I stub my toe on some unseen object?

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:47 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    A bizzare pattern of impossible anomalies is unleashed in this MeFi Electiontheft special. I was listening to reports last night regarding the 400% surge of repug votes in a primarily Dem county in Florida... there's no way this election was fair. Observers from freedom lovin' countries like the Kingdom of Putin have cried foul. Even Nader is crying foul. I have a feeling that as wave upon wave of reports comes in, the legitimacy of the presidential shoplifter will come into play.

    Also, please check out Black Box Voting, an amazing compendium of information on the politics behind electonic voting systems.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:34 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Friday, 05 November, 2004 }

    redesign havoc

    Working on this redesign... bear with me. If you have Mozilla and have the expertise I lack as to why I'm overrunning the table borders at the bottom of the page, please let me know in the comments. Thanks! I think it may be a DIV tag, but I'm tired of trying to figure it out.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:00 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Conquest of the Self-Evident: The Philosophy of Dostoevsky

    How has it happened, how could it happen, that the wisest are in doubt where the ordinary man can see no difficulty whatsoever, and why are the most painful and terrible difficulties always reserved for the wisest? For what can be more terrible than not to know whether one is alive or dead? "Justice" should insist that this knowledge or this ignorance should be the prerogative of every human being. What am I saying: Justice! Logic itself demands it, for it would be absurd that it should be granted to some to distinguish between life and death, while others were bereft of this power; for those who possessed it would then be completely different from those to whom it is refused, and we should hardly have the right to comprehend them both under the category of human beings. He only is a man who knows certainly what life is and what death. He who does not know, he who even occasionally, were it but for a single instant, ceases to perceive the dividing line which separates life from death, ceases to be a man and becomes... what? Where is the Oedipus who can resolve this question and penetrate to the depths of this supreme mystery?

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:58 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    I'm coming home today, and after this insane week full of deflation, hour long asthma attacks, and the at times thrilling feeling of foriegn-ness, it will feel great to be back on home turf. Look for a site redesign this weekend.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:01 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    { Thursday, 04 November, 2004 }

    "This Machine"

    Humans as machines
    Created in the deep void
    From elements made vital by randomness;
    If our queer maufacture mirrors the mechanistic,
    Exactly what task are we performing for the Universe?

    A yesterday ago
    The machine which is my body
    Failed suddenly; no breath, no strength,
    A sutra of urgent negations, limp I succumbed
    To processes I struggle today to understand, what broke?

    Assembled parts cognate
    As one flow in seeming perfection
    Operable through will, through passion
    Through a cacophony of motivations animate
    Who is at the controls, we ask, when the machine goes silent?

    Crumpled to the floor
    A certain knowledge of vacuous fear
    As hands pressed my flesh, voices bade me breathe
    As night entered blood, bones froze in deference to lungs
    Only to ask in a flood of sweat, what has brought this close to earth?

    Work, body, work,
    The commands of the unseen
    Countermand the shroud which began
    To cover the error-ridden engine, design unknown,
    Now more than ever, what is the task required from this device?

    Sweet holy medicine
    Found under the second hand
    Somewhere in the knick of time, the body
    Breathes again, sleeps again, and arises again
    Grateful for the day, but needing to know, for what godly chore
    Has the day been saved for this scared, awed, relieved and thankful man?

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:05 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    FrightFest2004 Mini-Round-Up

  • Exit polls and ‘actual’ results don’t match; Evoting states show greater discrepancy... the odds of President Bush having gaining an advantage from every exit poll in swing states is an extremely improbable coincidence.
  • A concession speech you'd love to hear ...I concede that I overestimated the intelligence of the American people. Though the people disagree with the President on almost every issue, you saw fit to vote for him. I never saw that coming. That's really special. And I mean "special" in the sense that we use it to describe those kids who ride the short school bus and find ways to injure themselves while eating pudding with rubber spoons. That kind of special. I concede that I misjudged the power of hate... The unprecedented number of folks who showed up and cited "moral values" as their biggest issue, those people changed history. The folks who consider same sex marriage a more important issue than war, or terrorism, or the economy... Who'd have thought the election would belong to them? Well, Karl Rove did. Gotta give it up to him for that.
  • Kerry won, says Greg Palast: I know you don't want to hear it. You can't face one more hung chad. But I don't have a choice. As a journalist examining that messy sausage called American democracy, it's my job to tell you who got the most votes in the deciding states. Tuesday, in Ohio and New Mexico, it was John Kerry.
  • Michael Moore has 17 reasons not to slit your wrists and about 1,100 reactions to Dumb and Dumber: The American Electorate.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:37 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Surpise, it's Fraud! Post-mortem Ohio Ground Report

    Countless other frauds occurred, such as postcards advising people of incorrect polling places, registered Democrats not receiving absentee ballots, duly registered young voters being forced to file provisional ballots even though their names and signatures appeared in the voting rolls, longtime active voting registered voters being told they weren't registered, bad faith challenges by Republican "challengers" in Democratic precincts, and on and on and on.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:21 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    "Attacked"

    I had a sudden and massive asthma attack last night, the most severe of my life. I could not breathe and several times started to pass out. Thanks to Sarah, Daren, Joshua by phone, and an expeditious reunion with my inhaler, I eventually stabilized. It was especially difficult since I'm not home, which left me feeling especially vulnerable.

    I'm really blessed to have had such great people there... my deepest gratitude to you.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:39 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 03 November, 2004 }

    Empires Fade

    The powers of control are scrambling to keep up with the ever-quickening pace of change. But conquerors rise and empires fade. In the heart of order the seed of chaos finds sustenance. Control is predicated on stasis and the oppression of dissent. In a dynamic nonlinear world, control will always be cast off by the forces of evolution. Power-mad apes battling over dwindling resources, driven by competition and the illusory fear of otherness, are simply caught in the spasms of a vestigial tail held on the chopping block.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:55 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    "Disobeyance and Radical Love!"

    Thunderstruck and dumbfounded, I awoke this morning to find that my America had been stolen. Not the election; the nation.

    I've been studying this election for months, friends will tell you that my head was always in the stats. I was so assured of victory that preparing for a loss was out of the question. I wasn't ready for it. I drank vodka tonics last night until I stopped feeling anything, an anaesthetic for the cruel surgery that bloodied the headlines. We all know about an Ohio promised to Bush by Diebold, districts running out of ballots for the long lines, blacks purged again in Florida, and nefarious machine crashes in Iowa and New Mexico, and partisan hackery in Milwaukee. These all could have helped to steal another election, which is only a single manoevre in the game to steal the country, a political, cultural and spiritual crime of the worst kind.

    I can stand proudly today, however, to resist the suicide of consciousness we're witnessing; there's a steely knife being held just above Lady Liberty's jugular, there's poison pill in her hand and a fucking sale at W**Mart. The constitution is being gathered for kindling and civil society has been plucked from the crib and shaken. We can resist this destruction of fair governance, destruction of the biosphere, and destruction of the curiosity of the soul. We can hold accountable those who have sullied the great works of simple heroes who have held their lives to the line for the sake of freedom. We can resist by ceasing, immediately, to buy into the control drama of the pillaging marauders of virtue, who claim values as 100,000 are slaughtered in Iraq, the poor are marginalized and sold off to the 'private sector,' quote-unquote minorities whom are sidelined and written out of the protective book of American justice, and the ecological abatoire that is corporate rule. We must resist George Walker Bush. He is not my president, I will not obey him, and I revolt against the theft of the spirit of fairness and equity which was once the shining light of American democracy.

    I will work, in my own way, to stop the suicide of mass-consciousness by saying NO again and again to the death-culture of war, the idolatry of money, the trance of elitism and the arrested objectivity of the media. I pledge, as I hope we all will, to recognize the deep beauty of all people, beings, and ways of life; even if any of these threaten mine, for all creation is sacred, and while I will staunchly fight the regime, I know the people behind it are as miraculous as we all are, even as their actions defy goodness... even if they are truly personifying that thing called evil. Love thine enemies, someone said long ago...

    America is stolen, Liberty is in the final seconds before death and if we choose sleep over wakefulness, our conscious mind is in utter, black and abysmal peril. But, if ever there were an alarm to us all of the desparate nature of our natures, this is it. This is the dark night of the mystics, the pivoting point of the revolutionaries, this is an indiscretion intolerable and who shall answer to it but those who want a renewal more? That is we; craving, working, fighting and praying for a single global heartbeat of peace. Our desire to transform shall answer the deeds of the faithless. The meek shall inherit, and strong love will overcome ignorant hate and move mountains.

    I know, one day not far off, I will awaken to a world transformed by love, and the creative, voluntary disobeyance of tyrannical governments. I know the headlines will once again tell of true heroes who resisted the tempting surrender to temporal, virtual entertainments. I know that one day, no one will bother with the sale at fucking W**Mart and will be busy in true betterment of their lives. I know, because I and many will work for it, and no work goes unrewarded. I know, one day, the wine on my lips will be celebratory for the achievements of dedicated, tireless people who care beyond measure for children, for the planet, for one less bomb and one less extinction. So, let's wake the heaven up and get started...

    We must not fail, we must march, we must yell, we must love radically, we must create and evolve, we must defend and endure! Resist this occupation, let your thinking mind and feeling heart be the revolution, and for the love of God and Country, be vigilant and strong to the point where we cannot be resisted any longer, and the Earth is whole again.

    Thank you, John Kerry and John Edwards, for fighting the fight and bringing us hope.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:36 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Um...?

    qshrub1.jpg

    Hope, upon hope, upon hope.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:57 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 02 November, 2004 }

    Pray and Visualize

    This anticipation is killing me; if this fucks up, I'm out of the country... for real.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:23 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    Your Voting Stories

    Loxahatchee, Fla.: (From the West Palm Beach area.) This morning, I left my husband at home with my one-year-old twin sons, took my four-year-old son to preschool then waited 45 minutes in line to vote. The weather was perfect, the people were waiting patiently and the process went smoothly. Then I went home to stay with the twins while my husband went to vote. I watched them playing outside and thought of my other son at school and thought about the importance of today. I visualized the celebrations later this evening when Kerry is declared the winner. I may even have "prayed" to any deity or spirit / god or goddess that cared to hear my thoughts to make it so and spare us from another four years of this regime and salvage my sons future and the position of this country in the world. When I look at my three sons, I desperately hope that by the time they are old enough to vote, they live in a better world. And my heart breaks for all the mothers whose children have been sacrificed unjustifiably or who have to explain to their children why daddy isn't going to come home again.

    jaybird found this for you @ 20:34 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Turnout!

    Oh, this is huge. So many reports about magnificent turnout, and this momentum is very likely to mean one thing: we are in the process of rewriting history, renewing our stake in destiny, and preparing for democratic and non-violent regieme change.

    If you haven't done it yet, you know what to do.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:14 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    As over 100 million Americans vote, I will be in a training all day, not home til 5ish or 6ish. I'm calm about tonight, and now must focus on getting through the first of eight days of hotel living, keeping up the the class workload, and experiencing a wide variety of socially related emotion.

    Get out there, do good work, and I'll be posting plenty of goodness tonight.

    jaybird found this for you @ 06:53 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    { Monday, 01 November, 2004 }

    Get Out The Vote!

    Dear Friends,

    I've got the car packed for a late-night drive to Greensboro for a week-long training for work. I will be nail-biting and celebrating in spirit with y'all while the upcoming Kerry victory is tallied a hundred and some-odd miles away in my hotel room.

    I've already voted, so I won't have the thrill of the lines, the momentum, the crackling energy of change that is tangible and statistically tenable right now. I have an "unquiet" faith that good fortune and the will of the people, indeed, the will of the mysterious justice of the collective consciousness of humanity will prevail, and how.

    In this, the final post of the final day of the campaign, I implore you to become a part of the revolution tomorrow. Join with your citizens in affirming and creating equity and liberty in the American conversation. This regieme has done well to cause significant impact on the planet, like never before. Stopping this devastation is imperative, and it's up to you.

    How's that for a responsibility? You can do it, we can do it, and it's happening right now.

    For now, that's today's programming. I'll see you tomorrow, posting from some anonymous place in foreign territory. Meanwhile, read the good words of Mr. Mike, and rest easy tonight, for there's major work to be done tomorrow. It's spirited work. This transition is a holy, in an odd sort of way. Our goal is to discover why.

    Michael Moore: One Day Left

    I know it’s gotta be rough for you right now. Hey, we’ve all been there. “You’re fired” are two horrible words when put together in that order. Bin Laden surfacing this weekend to remind the American people of your total and complete failure to capture him was a cruel trick or treat. But there he was. 3,000 people were killed and he’s laughing in your face. Why did you stop our Special Forces from going after him? Why did you forget about bin Laden on the DAY AFTER 9/11 and tell your terrorism czar to concentrate on Iraq instead?

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:07 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    A Soon-to-be-lame-duck has a conversation with Bill Cosby, on the moon.

    "It will make you feel good!"

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:45 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    Get Out The Vote!

    In times of fear, we must always vote for democracy

    I believe in an America that will lead all free nations in the fight against terrorism, and will not in the process abandon the freedoms brave Americans and others fought and died for. I believe in an America that won’t send my cousin off to fight with veterans of the Vietnam War because a former frat boy whose daddy hid him in the National Guard wouldn’t take the political risk of using enough troops to prosecute his trumped-up, fraudulent war. I believe in an America that doesn’t use the threat of terrorism as a bludgeon in the voting booth.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:11 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Get Out The Vote!

    Bush Win Would Mean Dark Times; World Would Perceive Support For Preemptive War

    The presidential election on Tuesday is one of the most crucial in American history. There are many reasons -- in foreign policy and on the domestic front -- why President George W. Bush should not be reelected. Among them is the dominance of the radical right in his advisory councils, who are taking the United States down the wrong road at the start of the 21st century.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:07 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    From Proletariat to Soulitariat

    The soulitarian is the creative and information worker who knows that there has to be a finely struck balance between the self that is demanded by the job, and the self that is brought to the job. The proletarians in Roman times brought his body to the service of the master. The soulitarian is often asked to bring her mind, imagination and heart also. Yet will there be true innovation in a company if it invites people to commit too much of their interiority and hinterland to a particular goal-directed enterprise? In advance of companies realising that they can't colonise their employees sensibilities entirely, soulitarians make sure that they have some kind of supporting matrix - friends, interests, private tech, a mission or activism - that can allow them to get some distance from workplace imperatives. Many soulitarians take the freelance option, of course - composing a portfolio career of value-adding and -creating activities. But their experience of digitality and connectedness over the last decade gives them a different take on how organisations and production situations can be. Soulitarians put the company and enterprise "into play" - until it either changes, or shows them the door.

    jaybird found this for you @ 08:52 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink




     
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    0. If you find yourself wonderstruck, don’t forget to return the favor.

    1. Always be of service to the whole and the Holy. You’ll find that the Holy will reciprocate by being of service to your becoming Whole.

    2. You will be called upon to use your mind and your vision in ways I cannot possibly glimpse. Never turn down an offer to shine that light so uniquely yours to help others in their darkness, and you’ll find that when it’s your turn to be in the night that there’ll be someone along the way who happens to have a little glow to share .

    3. The rewards of being true to yourself  are infinite, even when outwardly your efforts are met with nothing.

    4. You’ll also see that  knowledge and wisdom will come from within yourself through your own struggle and curiosity... your loved ones may guide you to insight, but yours is the power to choose it.

    5. You’ll find that some of your choices could’ve been better, or at times were downright stupid. That’s okay... I have a closet full of reckless decisions, but without making them I wouldn’t have the slightest idea of what a good one might feel like if I tried it on.

    6. Your growth will be a mysterious, comic, ecstatic and sometimes scary ride, and I pray that you strive to savor each minute of it, even the most difficult or embarrassing minutes. Don’t count on second chances.

    7. In those times when everything collapses around you, and what’s left won’t go right, don’t forget your chances of being alive in this solar system, in this galaxy, are a little on the slim side. So slim in fact that it could be called a miracle to breathe this air, drink this water, and have whet ever predicament you’re having no matter how you shake, rattle and roll it. So go with the cosmic flow and always choose something over nothing, while remembering that there’s a little of each one hidden in both.

    8. Respond as best as you can with love to adversity rather than reacting with fear... Love, in any situation and  being the primordial source and essence of ALL THIS STUFF, leaves / enters us with the most possible ways out / in.

    9. Whatever you’re doing, celebrate the process of doing as much, if not more, than what you’ve got when you’re done. Magic lives in the action.

    9 ½ . All matter is energy. All energy is infinite. We are but raindrops falling to the ocean, a short time in this shape until we’re reunited with the expanse from which we came. Your delicate yet sturdy, resilient body is a temporary shelter of energy that has swam the universe eternally and will continue eternally. You are a sudden crystallization of the infinite. One must ask themself, therefore, why be bored?

    9 3/4 . Choosing to live in the moment is courageous but becomes effortless once you begin...feeling obligated to survive in the past or future is dangerous and is difficult to continue. It’s one of the few risks I’d recommend not taking, right up there with trusting icons and shrugging off coincidences.

    10. The Universe itself it not confusing, we humans just like it that way. Do frogs seem bewildered , butterflies befuddled and amoebas addled? Nope, just us, my child. So, whenever things just don’t make sense, just take a deep breath and laugh as best you can, because that’s what you get for choosing this goofy, unpredictable place called Earth to embody yourself upon.