To the Edge, and Beyond.

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I was recently pushed past my percieved limits during an 11 day Ayurvedic (traditional Indian medicine) treatment immersion. I love Ayurveda because it is precise, it has been researched and proven effective for thousands of years, and it’s all herbal, so it is in total alignment with the natural order. It targets restoring the body’s innate balance, so that it then heals itself. My series of treatments were similar to Pancha Karma, if you want to Google that to get some idea, but tailored to my specific health issues.  Think hours a day, every day, filled with massages with various medicinal herbal substances, steam treatments, purges, and drinking, swishing, and snorting various herbally medicated substances.  Day One was heaven, but by Day Three it had devolved into a hellish passive endurance test of being poked, prodded, and pummeled, and there were nine days still to go.

On Day Six, I felt like they broke me.  I was shattered.  I couldn’t imagine continuing.  The thought … Read the rest

Tiruvannamalai, October 2019

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Warning:  This got long.  I’ve been posting a lot of photos on fb, but now I feel the need to paint a picture with words.

I’ve been in Tiruvannamalai just under a week, so I’m about half way through my visit. I initially thought two weeks wasn’t going to be nearly long enough, but I’m having the odd yet pleasant sensation that every day is about a week long.  I also considered not coming; like this short of a visit wasn’t important for me to be here, but oh my heavens, I was wrong about that!  My experiences here have been exquisite.

Multiple times a day, when I come home, I open my gate and step into my yard, then open the metal grating to my foyer and seriously wonder how I ended up with a proper house in the perfect spot on the main street of my preferred part of town for a screaming deal of a price. I thought being here for … Read the rest

#TakeBackPrivacy

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I’ve been trying to extinguish this rant for three days. It just feels like more negativity in an already negative world, but damn, it needs to be said.

The current state of affairs with technology is FUCKED UP. I just upgraded to Office 2019 from 2010 a few days ago, and the invasion of my privacy is astounding!

Not only does it try to suck every part of my life online, the user interface for Outlook is completely unusable for me. Even after tweaking every possible font, spacing, and color setting, it’s still an instant headache that turns into functional blindness about about 15 minutes of trying to use it. Who designs this shit??? Clearly not someone who cares about users who may be aging or have visual processing issues.

Conversations with long time tech friends in a bar last night echoed conversations with friends at kirtans and other social events over the last year. Yes, we know [fill in the blank] is detrimental … Read the rest

Testing Subscriptions

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I go for months at a time without updating this site, so people (including me) forget it’s here. Starting right now, I have a subscription link in the right sidebar of every page. That way, if it’s been six months since I’ve shared my musings, you don’t have to notice, and you’ll get an email letting you know I’ve written something. Please give it a try!

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A Word on Tantra* and Bhakti

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I am a shameless Bhākta.  I am head over heels in love with divinity in many of Its forms.  So why Tantra?  It is said that Bhakti is the fastest and most enjoyable path to enlightenment, so why not just stick to that?  That’s where I started, so why the emphasis on Tantra these days?

It’s like this: Bhakti is indeed a very fast and enjoyable path.  I don’t know about enlightenment because I am not enlightened, but I trust what knowledgeable people say about that being true.  I do know from experience that it is a lightning-fast method to obtain Oneness.  When I’m chanting, the bliss of that Oneness is unsurpassed.  The effects of the vibrations change matter, as I found out when I healed my body with chanting.  However, the Oneness fragments back into the many when I stop chanting and come back to the relative world.  The echos of the vibrations definitely come with me, and ripple out into all areas … Read the rest

Just More Colonization in Woke Clothing?

posted in: Activism, Blog | 0

The eight episode series on Netflix, Black Earth Rising, is deeply thought provoking. It raises important questions that it doesn’t answer about the horrific things, including genocide, that happened in Rwanda and Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo).  It has stuck with me and pokes me throughout the day at the edge of my consciousness.  It’s powerful, and on the surface seems like groundbreaking work, but beyond the subject matter, the form it takes bothers me.

I can’t help but wonder what it would be like if an African had written it.  I wonder if there would be a white guy as one of the main lead characters. Would the main African character have been literally saved by whiteness?  Sure, the story has to contain white people, as they did play a nefarious colonizing role, but how do Africans see those characters?  I can guess that they pretty much don’t need to center them.  How would the conversations and relationship dynamics between … Read the rest

Intersectionality of Spiritual Practice and Activism

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I’ve been fortunate this year in having many spiritual practices show up that have expanded my sense of peace and security and enabled me to interact in a powerful way in the outer world. I’m finding it difficult to talk about them, because they’re not spiritual at all.

Except, they are.

It’s a fun conundrum. That’s why I think talking about the intersection is important.

How is burning up my physical body along with all socially constructed self images, creating a new energy body, and then thickening it into my physical body every day spiritual? I don’t know, but this particular practice, called deha-shuddhi -> amṛta-vyāpti -> prakāśa-kāya, is taken out of an ancient Tantrik text, so it must be, right? It’s taught as a means to experience that the body, as well as all the layers of self-hood, are an instantiation of pure Consciousness.

The results were instantaneous from the very first time I practiced it, but I  can’t say this one will

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What is Freedom?

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I believe freedom has many facets, and we have been mislead on what it means.  We have been convinced that the world we see outside of ourselves is of primary importance, and we have to conform to this world to get ahead in life.  This only serves to deny us our  freedom, and drive us deeper into bondage.

Inner freedom does not depend on the outer world.  It is accessible any time, day or night, no matter what is happening in our lives.  It is available in the midst of the most horrendous crisis and on the most beautiful peaceful day.

I believe it is time for us to reclaim our freedom.  One way to do this is to examine the stories we have allowed to control our lives.  One of these stories is the story of separation.

The story of separation is responsible for all hoarding, all competition, and all ideas of scarcity.  The story of separation has no bearing on the sun, … Read the rest

The Race Card

Have you ever been in a conversation and been accused of playing the “race card”? Or been asked “Why do you have to make everything about race?” or “Why do you have to bring race into everything?”

There is a simple answer to this. Every time someone is referred to who is not white, their race or culture is used to describe them. Indigenous, East Indian, African American, Asian American, Latinx, BIPOC, etc. We use people’s race right up front to identify them, how could that not already be a part of the conversation?

How about we start doing the same thing when describing white people. I saw a headline go flitting across my fb feed recently about using the term White American. The article disappeared before I had a chance to read it, but it sounds like a fine idea. I’m going to start doing it. It’s only fair, right?

I mean, seriously, why should white people be the only ones that can … Read the rest

Who Owns Your Time?

I’ve been thinking about cultural issues a lot lately, and I think I know why there is such resistance to providing workers with a living wage, or even considering them employees so that they earn benefits.

It’s about the commodity of time.

If workers are required to work longer and longer hours just to make ends meet, then spend the rest of their waking hours rushing around to procure the things they need for themselves and their families just to live, they lose the ownership of their time.

If one loses the ownership of their time, they become slaves who have no choice but to keep running on the hamster wheel that’s allowing the top rung to hoard obscene levels of wealth.

If one loses ownership of their time, they cannot show up to social justice actions designed to change the rules.

It’s no wonder so many people try to use social media as their activism platform, as ineffective as it is. It’s one … Read the rest