Thursday, August 14, 2014

Healthy Humanity

In our struggles in search of: healthy, natural, normal, happy, etc, we have skipped a fundamentally important question.  Health of...?  A normal...what?  What is it that is happy?  

If we have no fundamental definition of what a human-being is, then we have no basis upon which to act to change the circumstances we find ourselves.  

Our medicine, food, economics, architecture, socio-political structure, cultural norms, moral standards, are all facets of society born and built upon the definition of what a healthy human-being (and thus healthy society) is.  If we have no clear definition and/or we are confused about our condition, then the constructs of society will thus be disorientating, confusing, exhausting (and possibly harmful), as seems to be the case in the modern world.  

So long as we are confused about the human condition, is to the extent which we will continue to generate a confusing world in which human-beings find themselves in states of suffering and struggle.  

Thus, the need to find what is 'wrong' in society can relax.  You can only find what is wrong in human society if you know what a normal (healthy) human-being is (you can only know sick if you know healthy).  Therefore, if we are interested in generating a healthy society for human-beings, then the first (and last) question becomes: what is a human-being?  Inclusive in the definition of humanity resides the answer to any question imaginable.  

Friday, May 9, 2014

Elementary Education

Our (American) education model was/is designed with the purpose of turning the individual into a cog in the machine of industry/production to create things for our merchant society to trade.  
The question then becomes:
What exactly are we selling, and does our product work to enhance relationship between humans?  We are producing and selling to humans, so what we produce must positively influence society and relationships between humans, right?  However, if we are unsure what a human-being is, we have no basis upon which to measure our success as a merchant class of people.  

Elementary Education, in the true sense of the term, is the study of what it means to be a human-being (did you ever get that education?) -- which is the study of the inherent relationship/appetite phenomena.  

It is the fundamental case, that we are driven (naturally) and directed (via appetite) to be in a set of relationships (to both beings and things), the likes of which we have no capacity to explain with any certainty or completeness.  Modern society is the outcome when we ignore the fact that relationship is taking place of-itself.  
If we ignore the fact of relationship, then creating a story about who I am and why I am here becomes very important (hence Facebook lol).  However, if we have even a small amount of Elementary Education, then this anxious and hysterical drive to create a story of meaning/value relaxes.  Then there is no need to pacify and dull our senses with endless entertainments and empty food so that we needn't pay attention to the situation we find ourselves.  Then there is no reason to prove to ourselves that we (as a class of merchants) are producing valuable goods and services with meaning and purpose to justify our existence... btw, why do we need to justify our existence?  To whom are we justifying?  Who are we serving exactly?  

Without this basic elementary look at what it means to be human, then it is easy for another being, with ambition and focused desire, to convince us we should work for them and their ideas (modern/industrial society).  Without basic human education - ambition, violence, power, control, greed all look sensible - but all lack a basic understanding of the human condition.  This understanding (which is not an idea, rather an experience) is the meaning of the word wisdom.  Wisdom is the basic Elementary Education we were trained away from by those who had something to sell us.  

As it is, wisdom would undermine our entire modern life, as we are accustomed to it - and so it takes a lot of work/effort/struggle to keep ourselves from looking at our fundamental nature in order to keep up the status quo of modern human relationship based on an industrious/mechanical model of humanity in a society which requires the belief that the buying and selling of things/ideas has meaning/value.  

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Winter's Here

A window opened today
and a cold wind blew through
the shutters flew
on the surface grew
a vibrant young radiant hue
the thick of the night
held the blooming moon rays
like a soft shroud blanket

A window opened today
and through it came
a tired tried and true
someone who
knows how to
keep it all together
crying he lied
laughing he died
altogether a fool

A window opened today
and not far away
song birds were singing
the smell of fall leaves
letting from the eaves
of white birch trees leaving
peering out to look
in a think winter cloak
on a misty dewy morning

A window opened today
and somewhere along the way
somebody told me to
see the trees growing
feel the crisp breeze snowing
to smell the leaves falling
hear the bird song calling
now there is no way
without glass or shade
to see things like they do
winter is here
crystal clear
death to all knowing

Friday, November 8, 2013

Bay Arian

A Bay Arian is a person who:
a. Lives or resides in or around the San Francisco Bay Area.
b. Has no cultural grounding/basis upon which actions stem.

In a desperate attempt to find some meaning and grounding in life, we Californians, and those of the Bay Area in particular, are adopting practices of other cultures. 

Regardless of what we choose to believe, in the United States our view of what humans are and how we relate to the world has a grounding in a Christian outlook of life. Though many of us residing in the Bay Area have renounced this view and its practices, the eyes through which we view the world, ourselves, and all relationship is fundamentally Christian in nature. This is neither good/bad, right/wrong. We must understand though that our view of the world and the practices we adopt together create the outcomes we experience.

When we have a view which we do not recognize, combined with a hodgepodge set of practices stemming out of cultures and views that are not our own, our experience of life will certainly be one of confusion, struggle, suffering, and doubt. Having no culture which lends a feeling of connection, purpose, lost amidst a sea of practices not our own, we are left to establish meaning and significance in life on our own, as individuals. Thus it makes sense that we meander about trying on the practices of other cultures like we are shopping, never finding any sense connection or common purpose. It then makes sense that we are deeply afraid of everyone around us and why we have so much hate in our hearts.

We must understand that in our attempt to establish some new cultural base, our view is as important, if not more so, than the practices we adopt or establish. However, most of us are scanning and trying out the practices of others in the search for the 'right' or 'correct' way of doing things. This is fundamentally naive and stems from the Christian idea of there being the morally right way of living as dictated by a creator God. But, when we get right down to it, all practices are fundamentally the same. There is no right or wrong, good or bad. There is only the view you have melded with the practices you undertake and the fruition of view/practice moving free of any moral dilemma. It is only us that bring the judgments to the table.

If we are truly interested in fruition, we must see that we are viewing ourselves and the world through the Christian lens. That we have adopted the idea that after a long period of struggle to change our circumstance and what we are (sin), eventually, we will find the right way of living and all will be right and good (heaven). And that once we find this right way of doing things, it is then up to us to teach it to others and show them the right way (savior). Then to the extent that others agree with the right way, is to the extent they are our friends and to the extent they disagree, our enemies (God sanctioned hate and war).

Thankfully though, if we look at things free of the Christian view, there exists no mandate that any of us agree or disagree with the way life actually is. We are wholly free to have any view and any practice we so desire and life has no response other than the fruition of our view and practice.

So welcome to our reality my fellow Bay Arians! My confused and desperate brothers and sisters. May we all see with unclouded eyes or original nature. May we all be free to adopt any practice that makes sense to us with the view that coincides for the fruition of all beings and things.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

2013 Moon Festival

In traditional Chinese Culture dating back to the Song dynasty (960-1279), today is the Moon or Mid-Autumn Festival.  Today marks the full return of annual yin.  In Chinese Cosmology, it is possible to explain the movement of all things in terms of the years qi (pronounced chee -- no English word equivalent exists; qi is most often referred to as energy, however, this is not the full story) broadly viewed as a cyclical pattern of yin and yang which is easily seen when looking at the seasons.  Winter being the time when Yin (earth, mother, stillness, cold) is at its peak and yang is most diminished.  Summer being the time when Yang (fire, heaven, father, movement, heat) is at its peak and yin is most diminished.  The moon festival is the celebration and recognition that yin is the new yang, baby!  White is out, black is back.  

Farmers the world over are now harvesting the bountiful fruits of summer (yang).  The Moon Festival marks the time to take these fruits indoors for nourishment and storage in preparation for the big yin of winter.  Externally we are gathering and storing qi, but the Moon Festival also marks the time for us to recognize this change-of-the-guard internally as well.  

The roots of the fruits that will come to pass over the next several months have already been laid down via yang over the course of spring and summer.  The moon festival is the time to formally acknowledge black is back and yang aint no thang.  In other words, chill out, rest, relax, reflect.  In action, be more reluctant as opposed to relying on impulsive actions aimed at getting what you want.  What occurs over the next several months already has the momentum to carry itself through towards the ends that were clearly laid down while yang was growing and strong in the spring/summer.  Any amount of undue force exerted on circumstance from here on out will bring about conflict, disaster and perhaps even untimely passing (2013's Water Snake will bite if yang fails to rest).  

So if you have moon cakes, eat them today and nourish yourself with the great grounding yin of the moon.  No moon cakes?  No worries, simply take a bit of time and acknowledge that you actually don't have any control over the circumstances you find yourself in; that yang is great and all, but curled up with a warm fuzzy blanket on a plush couch with tea sounds like the better idea compared to a sweaty jog around the lake.  Put your feet on the ground.  In order to walk any path, your feet must first be on the ground. 

Chinese Astrology for Thursday, Sept 19, 2013 as interpreted by Liu Ming:
The moon is full. Today in the Chinese Almanac is called the Mid-Autumn (or Moon) Festival an important annual festival since the Song dynasty (960 and 1279). This full moon designates the return of annual Yin is in full swing. It is appropriate to raise a toast (unfiltered sake in a black bowl) to the moon and welcome her back to power. Thank her for recalling your spiritual aspirations and resolving the conflicts of declining Yang. Read her a poem or two. Medicinal baths and soaks work wonders. The day supports a new resolution about diet.