Wednesday, October 5, 2016

True, North is the other side of South

From an old (1/7/96) Journal:

Realized today—for the first time really, it seems—that North is but the other side of South, and cold, the other face of hot; that it all depends on one’s perspective. I realized this while traversing the land and noticing the remarkable differences that exist from side to side, coming from a Southwest slope, facing into the relative warmth of the winter Sun, and then going down the Northeast, shady, mossy side of the same ridge, and looking at the opposing Southwest ridge across the gully, in full sun. When however you’re in a flat landscape you are the compass needle turning, spinning out your desired direction and fate; you become the mountain ridge in sun or shadow depending on the direction you face.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Heron Gesture

“Poetry uses the most ancient and universal of all languages, gesture, more than does prose. From gesture it is but a short way, if any way at all, to dance.” ~from Arthur Cooper’s Introduction to Li Po and Tu Fu.

Can I out-wait the Blue Heron? Be more patient than it than the fish? Can I become the water that passes beneath his smokey plumes? Can I carry the fish to the heron’s view—just a flash of movement will do. Can I bring myself and the fish to same still green water? Heron has it’s keen face away from my inquiring ideas. And then turning and stepping in the deliberate way that only hunters and Daoists know, head leading out to scan the water yet unplied by feet, spear poised to each gentle step, anticipating movement stirred up from below, herding its meal in.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Evolution of human attitudes toward Nature and Cosmos

The evolution of our Western attitudes toward Nature begins with fear and transforms into delight in the Sublime, continues in Enthusiasm--in those days a more radical attitude than today--and concludes in love of Nature, which arose through two stages: love of God through Nature, followed by a love Nature as such. In this way, love of Nature has its origins in love of God, the strongest and highest form of love that Westerners have professed to have.

~paraphrased from the book Foundations of Environmental Ethics (1989, pg.
202), Eugene Hargrove editor.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Nothing like belly breathing

There is likely nothing better for your health than DEEP, DIAPHRAGMATIC, BELLY BREATHING. By stimulating the Vagus nerve/parasymphathetic/relaxation response, belly breathing: Calms your entire nervous system, reduced inflammation throughout the body, connects your head brain with your gut brain. Try Section 1 of my DVD, Tai Chi and Qigong for Everyone, it is devoted to breathing practices.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

You can thank insects and birds for the beauty of flowers

Though they may not have been "consciously" (according to our human definitions of consciousness anyway) aware of it, insects and birds through their feeding/selecting behaviors helped "design"and  create the beautiful diversity and array of flowers in the world today. You should literally thank pollinators for having food to eat and flowers to enjoy.

Beautiful natural Design does not require "a Designer"

What we call beauty in Nature is an integral part of the design of the Universe, the fundamental laws from sub-atomic to galactic physics, but this does not require there to have been an original "Designer." It seems that Nature is designed or perhaps we should say, simply UNFOLDS, HAPPENS, beautifully--with symmetry and order--and it so happens that such beauty likes to appreciate itself (this is where human awareness comes in). This is a beautiful fact then, woven into the Kosmos (Greek for Goddess of  Beauty, by the way), that what we consider beautiful in Nature is the result of basic laws according to which the Cosmos evolves.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Existential notes of my 25 year-old self: on the Cosmic Wilderness we inhabit

21 years ago:

"Do we have any idea what the Cosmos has in store for us from day to day to year to eon after eon? We construct our houses of reality around our minds to shelter us from the cosmic storms of uncertainty and anxiety about our fate: which seems to this observer to be: ultimate mystery, through and throughout."

Which reminds me presently of a bumper sticker that I love: "Don't believe everything you think"  (I would add "and feel"), for while they may have validity for a time, like all things, thoughts and feelings change with Time.