Saturday, February 28, 2015

A WEEK IN the SCHOOL OF LIFE

"I Think We're All Bozos on This Bus."
-Firesign Theater-
see footnote
~*~

Oh, if only that timeless moment
If only suspension in pure bliss,
no time but an endless present.
Then, what then? Then, just this...

~*~
Monday Morning

Tuesday Art Opening
Gramercy Neighborhood Association Invitational
 National Arts Club

(30 second video just to hear the noise)
http://youtu.be/c0L_To6rbUc

Eighty Four Artists
On Exhibition and For Sale 
(seven selects)

Mayo Alyce
"Barred Owl"
Photograph-$425
Bo Kass
"Pot & Three Pears"
"C" Print-$350
Michael Mendel
"Toward an Unknown Fate"
Watercolor-$3000
Janet Bennett
"Ultramarine Shark"
Oil-$5,200
Annette Wallach Cohen
"Chelsea Girls"
Archival digital print-$650
Lorelei Arts
"Amazon Queen of the Sea"
Ink and Watercolor-$1,250
Kaelin Fuld
"Lips"
Acrylic-$400

 Modern Art Collection
(three selects)

Will Barnet
"Polly, Minou and Eon"
1979
Paul Manes
'Untitled'
1987 and 1988
Keith Haring
Untitled Subway Series fragment
1984

Arts Club's Eternal Presences  
Teddy
Edgar

Spontaneous Dialogue
with two young Masons on a cigarette break outside
 "I'm seventy two and I can lean",
I said, while leaning on the bannister.
'I'm thirty two and I can stand", replied plaid-clad.
"I'm 22 and I can dance" the other added.

Wednesday
An Apple Brown Betty
ready for the oven

Thursday
-Weekly Horoscope by R. Bresney-
"It's time to smash gaping holes through obstacles.
Don't scrimp or apologize. Clear the way for the future."

Friday

 Mondays child is fair of face,
Tuesdays child is full of grace,
Wednesdays child is full of woe,
Thursdays child has far to go,
Fridays child is loving and giving,
Saturdays child works hard for a living,


Saturday

And the child that is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonny and blithe, and good and gay.


Foot Note
I Think We're All Bozos on This Bus is the fourth comedy recording made by The Firesign Theatre for Columbia Records. It was released in 1971 and is the last of a tetrology, comprising their first four albums.

http://youtu.be/lmWFrMq3qNY

 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

IMAGES


If what you see is what you get, then I'm not through my getting yet

Yellow Jasper

Fragment of the head of a Queen:
http://www.metmuseum.org/collection/the-collection-online/search/544514
Photo behind it:

Egyptian workers on an excavation site

carrying sand or artifacts in small woven baskets

"The Ground On Which I Stand"
An American Masters documentary about August Wilson
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/August_Wilson
Scene from
"Jem Of The Ocean"

http://youtu.be/IOlSXgcIoPU

Flight Feathers
Screen Capture
"Owl Power"

Throwback Thursday
Seventies when a photographer friend used me in a series
'Cat-Cape-Effigy-Mask-Attitude'
Another Throwback
Women I knew from my film days
Agnes Varda-Carol Clement-Ariel Dougherty

The Quilt I loved
from Deanna Cohen's recent post at Face book

Postcard
Painting by Michael Sowa
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Sowa

Out Back In Manhattan
Shadows and Textures
Lines and Tracks


 Fragment of Cloth Art
by Grace Forest
 See the whole cloth still in process:
http://windthread.typepad.com/windthread/2015/02/flow.html

Postcard
Lower Manhattan Full Moon Collage
On February 23rd in 1927, physicist Werner Heisenberg first described his Uncertainty Principle in a letter. In a nutshell, the Uncertainty Principle states that the more precisely we can determine a particle's momentum, the less information we have about its position, and vice versa. The principle represents one of the most fundamental differences between quantum mechanics and classical physics.  Albert Einstein - who was a classical physicist - disagreed with quantum mechanics in general and the Uncertainty Principle in particular; he said, "I like to believe that the moon is still there even if we don't look at it."
The most potent part of everything is invisible and unknowable,
 It's transmitted through words that suggest it--by images, by gestures,
by thoughts that float on the air we share, and yet it remains itself.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

SHIVARATRI

OmNamah Shivaya
Sivaratri, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is celebrated on the moonless night of the month of Phalguna, which is the fourteenth day in the krishnapaksha or dark half. Owing to a special planetary conjunction, spiritual practices done on this day are considered to be especially auspicious and beneficial. There is a reference to this in one of the Puranas, where Shiva himself tells Parvati Devi [the Divine Mother] that this day is particularly dear to him, and that those who perform the prescribed austerities on this day will be freed from all sins.

One popular story from the Puranas goes like this:
There was once a poor hunter from Varanasi. His name was Suswara. He lived with his wife and child in a small hut. Theirs was a hand-to-mouth existence. Suswara would go to the forest and hunt whatever game came his way, and thus feed his family. One particular day, he caught many small animals and birds, which he put into a sack. Encouraged by the catch, he wandered deeper into the forest in search of more game. Soon darkness set in and he turned to go home. He was a little worried as the forest was infested with dangerous animals. He did not like the idea of spending the night there. Soon it became very dark. Unable to find his way back, Suswara climbed a tree to be safe from the wild animals.
Attracted by his scent, animals came lurking under the tree. Hoping to scare them away, Suswara plucked some twigs from the tree and threw them at the animals, but to no avail. Throughout the night the animals kept prowling beneath the tree.   Suswara was unable to get even a wink of sleep. He kept vigil throughout the night. He plucked leaves from the tree, which happened to be a bilva tree, and dropped them on the ground. Unknown to Suswara, there was a Shivalinga at the foot of the tree; and so, although he was unaware of it, by dropping the sacred bilva leaves, Suswara was making a sacred offering to the Shivalinga. That night happened to be Shivaratri. So the hunter had unknowingly kept a night-long vigil and worshipped Shiva.

According to the Shiva Purana, the Mahashivaratri worship should incorporate six items: offering bilva leaves to the deity after giving it a ceremonial bath, which represents purification of the soul; applying vermilion paste on the linga after bathing it, which represents virtue; offering food, which is conducive to longevity and the gratification of desires; lighting incense, which yields wealth; lighting an oil lamp, which signifies the attainment of knowledge; and offering betel leaves, which marks satisfaction with worldly pleasures. These six items form an indispensable part of the Mahashivaratri worship, be it a simple ceremony at home or grand temple worship.
The story above is an allegory. Just as the hunter sought to kill wild animals, the spiritual seeker tries to overcome lust, anger, greed, infatuation, jealousy and hatred. The jungle is the mind where all these negativities roam about. A spiritual aspirant must kill these "animals" to be free.

The name of the hunter was Suswara, which means "one of melodious voice." This indicates the purity of intent and speech, which, in turn, imply a level of mental purity.
The hunter was born in Varanasi. Vara refers to the forehead while nasi is the nose. The point where both meet is Varanasi, in other words, the point midway between the eyebrows. This point is also called the ajna chakra and is regarded as a nexus of the three nadis: ida, pingala and sushumna. A spiritual aspirant who concentrates his or her mind on this point gains concentration and gradual control over his senses. The killing of the animals thus indicates control over one's vasanas [latent tendencies].

The bilva tree corresponds to the spinal column. The tree's leaves are special: each stalk has three leaflets. The three leaflets represent the three nadis mentioned above. The climbing of the tree represents the ascent of the kundalini shakti from the muladhara to the ajna chakra.
Keeping awake is symbolic of the kind of awareness and oneness of purpose that a spiritual aspirant needs to reach the goal. He cannot afford to be slack even for a moment. 
Shiva is the Supreme Consciousness that illuminates the three states of waking, dreaming and deep sleep. Offering the threefold bilva leaves to the Shivalinga heralds the return to a level of consciousness beyond the three states, which is the fourth state, turiya. The dawning of that state is consonant with the awakening of the individual.
~*~ 
Everyone eats and has Chai
Everyone chants
Children run about freely
It's instant community

~*~


 Text  http://archives.amritapuri.org/bharat/festival/sivaratri.php

Thursday, February 12, 2015

NOTHING MUCH IS MORE THAN ENOUGH


PREPARATION
for weather possibilities
 Stocked up on food and a warm smile
from Trader Joe's Jessie
Armed with organics
to which I'll add ginger, then juice all.
Walked home pushing my four wheeled cart
past budding trees by Stuyvesant Park

~*~

UPDATE
"It's snowing still," said Eeyore gloomily. "So it is."
"And freezing." "Is it?" "Yes," said Eeyore. 
"However," he said, brightening up a little,
"we haven't had an earthquake lately."
Another dark night descends after another gray day,
leaving me to my imagination: My spirit horse is stabled,
while I retire under a well worn comforter, remembering
meetings with Shree Maa long ago in 'Ananda' land.
I listened to her sing Ramprasad, the 18th century mystic
from West Bengal, and slipped into contented sleep.
~*~

UPDATE
Sundown suggested a bit of a warming trend.

A bus trip across town took me to Zazen
with Angel Kyodo Williams
Listen to the talk
http://zencare.org/archives/zentalks/love-justice
(my thoughts)
When we feel separate from others, only one question need be addressed:
Is it fear or love?  If fear, what we fear about the other is what we have rejected within ourselves. So, if we allow, acknowledge and accept all the parts of ourselves, even those we don't approve of, love becomes possible, change becomes possible, fear and separation from others dissolves.  That's the path of choosing consciousness,
and the reason for my practice.
~*~

UPDATE
Hooray!  The  Flavia de Luce Mystery,
"Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust"
by Alan Bradley, has arrived.
I have listened with delight to the entire series so far, and have been waiting for this new release.  Belying the Young adult label, the sophistication of the brilliant, young protagonist "knowledgeable about chemistry, especially poisons, and deeply and widely read in history, the arts and the classics of literature", her curiosity, intelligence and understanding, make these mysteries fair fare for any adult audience. I'm enthusiastically recommending them to absolutely everyone who will listen.
I also recommend these herbal teas,
My simplified approach to domestic chores:
I do most laundry by hand, a little every day
pre-soaking in plastic containers overnight,
then a wash and rinse or two,
and air dry.
Laundromats are expensive and a trudge down three flights.
I use them for really big stuff only a few times a year.
~*~

UPDATE
Preparing to send to friends
I added hearts to Will Barnet postcards 
and, for the envelopes,
these farmers-market stamps
With this message inside
"Love is real"
http://youtu.be/WQuMSvUKGcM
The same message I send to all of you,
no matter what the weather.

 ~*~