Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Tina Turner

I believe that if you'll just stand up and go, life will open up for you.
- Tina Turner

My greatest beauty secret is being happy with myself. I don't use special creams or treatments - I'll use a little bit of everything. It's a mistake to think you are what you put on yourself. I believe that a lot of how you look is to do with how you feel about yourself and your life. Happiness is the greatest beauty secret.
- Tina Turner

You must love and care for yourself, because that's when the best comes out.
- Tina Turner

You take your problems to a god, but what you really need is for the god to take you to the inside of you.
- Tina Turner

I will never give in to old age until I become old. And I'm not old yet!
- Tina Turner

Mood Lifts

Nothing lifts me out of a bad mood better than a hard workout on my treadmill. It never fails. Exercise is nothing short of a miracle.
- Cher

Michael Phelps

Swimming is normal for me. I'm relaxed. I'm comfortable, and I know my surroundings. It's my home.
- Michael Phelps

Swimming is normal for me. I'm relaxed. I'm comfortable, and I know my surroundings. It's my home.
- Michael Phelps

There are too many kids who are drowning for lack of water safety. That's something I'd like to do. Teaching kids to live an active lifestyle.
- Michael Phelps

Barbara Streisand

“I'm not weird, just different from people who aren't different.”
― Barbra Streisand

Challenge

“Art does not exist only to entertain, but also to challenge one to think, to provoke, even to disturb, in a constant search for truth.”
― Barbra Streisand

Proud

“I am also very proud to be a liberal. Why is that so terrible these days? The liberals were liberators they fought slavery, fought for women to have the right to vote, fought against Hitler, Stalin, fought to end segregation, fought to end apartheid. Liberals put an end to child labor and they gave us the five day work week! What's to be ashamed of?”
― Barbra Streisand

Barbara Streisand

“You've got to discover you, what you do, and trust it.”
― Barbra Streisand

Overnight Forks

“I won't leave forks in the dish rack overnight because I believe that the tines attract demonic energy.”
― Barbra Streisand

Streisand

“I arrived in Hollywood without having my nose fixed, my teeth capped, or my name changed. That is very gratifying to me.”
― Barbra Streisand

No Comparisons

“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.”
― Alan W. Watts

Craving Crunch!

This time of year is full of soupy gloopy comfort foods. Don't get me wrong, I love them but I start to crave CRUNCH!
I realized that I had a cabbage and red onions and carrots so I made coleslaw and added apple and raisins and made a dressing from yogurt, milk, (since Price Rite Woonsocket stopped carrying buttermilk) mayo, mustard, hot sauce, salt, sugar, adobo, pickle juice, red wine vinegar. If I had celery I would have added it too.

Impromptu

The snow-plow driver opened his window and asked if he could meet Romeo. He stopped his truck in the middle of main street and climbed down from the cab. Romeo was terrified. He can be shy, I said. He's a rescue dog.
I just rescued a dog from my niece, he said. I wasn't planning to get a dog right away when my German Shepherd died on New Years Day at age 14. My niece had this one. She paid 3,800 dollars for her but she's moved onto other things.
Beautiful dog, I said. You're lucky!

Suzuki

“I discovered that it is necessary, absolutely necessary, to believe in nothing. That is, we have to believe in something which has no form and no color--something which exists before all forms and colors appear... No matter what god or doctrine you believe in, if you become attached to it, your belief will be based more or less on a self-centered idea.”
― Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki

“Life is like stepping onto a boat which is about to sail out to sea and sink.”
― Shunryu Suzuki

Open Up Small Mind

“The true purpose [of Zen] is to see things as they are, to observe things as they are, and to let everything go as it goes... Zen practice is to open up our small mind.”
― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice

Suzuki on Control

“Even though you try to put people under control, it is impossible. You cannot do it. The best way to control people is to encourage them to be mischievous. Then they will be in control in a wider sense. To give your sheep or cow a large spacious meadow is the way to control him. So it is with people: first let them do what they want, and watch them. This is the best policy. To ignore them is not good. That is the worst policy. The second worst is trying to control them. The best one is to watch them, just to watch them, without trying to control them.”
― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice

Control

“When we attempt to exercise power or control over someone else, we cannot avoid giving that person the very same power or control over us.”
― Alan W. Watts, The Way of Zen

Hypnotized by the Illusion

“We are living in a culture entirely hypnotized by the illusion of time, in which the so-called present moment is felt as nothing but an infinitesimal hairline between an all-powerfully causative past and an absorbingly important future. We have no present. Our consciousness is almost completely preoccupied with memory and expectation. We do not realize that there never was, is, nor will be any other experience than present experience. We are therefore out of touch with reality. We confuse the world as talked about, described, and measured with the world which actually is. We are sick with a fascination for the useful tools of names and numbers, of symbols, signs, conceptions and ideas.”
― Alan W. Watts

Alan Watts Excerpts

Below are seven excerpts from Watts’ two books, The Book: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are (1966) and The Joyous Cosmology (1962).

The Book: On The Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are:

The Self in Nature

Most of us have the sensation that “I myself” is a separate center of feeling and action, living inside and bounded by the physical body — a center which “confronts” an “external” world of people and things, making contact through the senses with a universe both alien and strange. Everyday figures of speech reflect this illusion. “I came into this world.” “You must face reality.” “The conquest of nature.”

The first result of this illusion is that our attitude to the world “outside” us is largely hostile. We are forever “conquering” nature, space, mountains, deserts, bacteria, and insects instead of learning to cooperate with them in a harmonious order.

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events — that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies — and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.

We do not “come into” this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean “waves,” the universe “peoples.” Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe.

The Taboo Against Knowing Yourself

The most strongly enforced of all known taboos is the taboo against knowing who or what you really are behind the mask of your apparently separate, independent, and isolated ego.

On seeing through the illusion of the ego, it is impossible to think of oneself as better than, or superior to, others for having done so. In every direction there is just the one Self playing its myriad games of hide-and-seek. Birds are not better than the eggs from which they have broken. Indeed, it could be said that a bird is one egg’s way of becoming other eggs. Egg is ego, and bird is the liberated Self.

The Game of Black and White

The general habit of conscious attention is, in various ways, to ignore intervals.

We do not play the Game of Black-and-White — the universal game of up/down, on/off, solid/space, and each/all. Instead, we play the game of Black-versus-White or, more usually, White-versus-Black. But the game “White must win” is no longer a game. It is a fight — a fight haunted by a sense of chronic frustration, because we are doing something as crazy as trying to keep the mountains and get rid of the valleys.

The principal form of this fight is Life-versus-Death, the so-called battle for survival, which is supposed to be the real, serious task of all living creatures.

Thus for thousands of years human history has been a magnificently futile conflict, a wonderfully staged panorama of triumphs and tragedies based on the resolute taboo against admitting that black goes with white. Nothing, perhaps, ever got nowhere with so much fascinating ado. As when Tweedledum and Tweedledee agreed to have a battle, the essential trick of the Game of Black-and-White is a most tacit conspiracy for the partners to conceal their unity, and to look as different as possible. It is like a stage fight so well acted that the audience is ready to believe it a real fight. Hidden behind their explicit differences is the implicit unity of what Vedanta calls the Self, the One-without-a-second, the what there is and the all that there is which conceals itself in the form of you.

If, then, there is this basic unity between self and other, individual and universe, how have our minds become so narrow that we don’t know it?

How to Be a Genuine Fake

The cat has already been let out of the bag. The inside information is that yourself as “just little me” who “came into this world” and lives temporarily in a bag of skin is a hoax and a fake. The fact is that because no one thing or feature of this universe is separable from the whole, the only real You, or Self, is the whole. The first step is to understand, as vividly as possible, how the hoax begins.

Few people seem to use the word for their whole physical organism. “I have a body” is more common than “I am a body.” We speak of “my” legs as we speak of “my” clothes, and “I” seems to remain intact even if the legs are amputated. We say, “I speak, I walk, I think, and (even) I breathe.” But we do not say, “I shape my bones, I grow my nails, and I circulate my blood.” We seem to use “I” for something in the body but not really of the body, for much of what goes on in the body seems to happen to “I” in the same way as external events.

Nevertheless, “I” usually refers to a center in the body, but different peoples feel it in different places. For some cultures, it is in the region of the solar plexus. The Chinese hsin, the heart-mind or soul, is found in the center of the chest. But most Westerners locate the ego in the head, from which center the rest of us dangles. The ego is somewhere behind the eyes and between the ears. It is as if there sat beneath the dome of the skull a controlling officer who wears earphones wired to the ears, and watches a television screen wired to the eyes. Before him stands a great panel of dials and switches connected with all other parts of the body that yield conscious information or respond to the officer’s will.

Wherever people may feel that the ego is located, and however much, or little, of the physical body is identified with it, almost all agree that “I” am not anything outside my skin. As Shakespeare’s King John says to Hubert, “Within this wall of flesh there is a soul counts thee her creditor.” The skin is always considered as a wall, barrier, or boundary which definitively separates oneself from the world — despite the fact that it is covered with pores breathing air and with nerve-ends relaying information. The skin informs us just as much as it outforms; it is as much a bridge as a barrier. Nevertheless, it is our firm conviction that beyond this “wall of flesh” lies an alien world only slightly concerned with us, so that much energy is required to command or attract its attention, or to change its behavior. It was there before we were born, and it will continue after we die. We live in it temporarily as rather unimportant fragments, disconnected and alone.

… The only real “I” is the whole endless process. This realization is already in us in the sense that our bodies know it, our bones and nerves and sense organs. We do not know it only in the sense that the thin ray of conscious attention has been taught to ignore it, and taught so thoroughly that we are very genuine fakes indeed.”

So What?

When this new sensation of self arises, it is at once exhilarating and a little disconcerting. It is like the moment when you first got the knack of swimming or riding a bicycle. There is the feeling that you are not doing it yourself, but that it is somehow happening on its own, and you wonder whether you will lose it — as indeed you may if you try forcibly to hold on to it. In immediate contrast to the old feeling, there is indeed a certain passivity to the sensation, as if you were a leaf blown along by the wind, until you realize that you are both the leaf and the wind. The world outside your skin is just as much you as the world inside: they move together inseparably, and at first you feel a little out of control because the world outside is so much vaster than the world inside. Yet you soon discover that you are able to go ahead with ordinary activities — to work and make decisions as ever, though somehow this is less of a drag. Your body is no longer a corpse which the ego has to animate and lug around. There is a feeling of the ground holding you up, and of hills lifting you when you climb them. Air breathes itself in and out of your lungs, and instead of looking and listening, light and sound come to you on their own. Eyes see and ears hear as wind blows and water flows. All space becomes your mind. Time carries you along like a river, but never flows out of the present: the more it goes, the more it stays, and you no longer have to fight or kill it.

Bach states it more elegantly, but with just as little external meaning:

Once you have seen this you can return to the world of practical affairs with a new spirit. You have seen that the universe is at root a magical illusion and a fabulous game, and that there is no separate “you” to get something out of it, as if life were a bank to be robbed. The only real “you” is the one that comes and goes, manifests and withdraws itself eternally in and as every conscious being.

You do not ask what is the value, or what is the use, of this feeling. Of what use is the universe? What is the practical application of a million galaxies?

The Joyous Cosmology

To begin with, this world has a different kind of time. It is the time of biological rhythm, not of the clock and all that goes with the clock. There is no hurry.

…here the depth of light and structure in a bursting bud go on forever. There is time to see them, time for the whole intricacy of veins and capillaries to develop in consciousness, time to see down and down into the shape of greenness, which is not green at all, but a whole spectrum generalizing itself as green — purple, gold, the sunlit turquoise of the ocean, the intense luminescence of the emerald.

I am not quite sure of the direction from which sounds come. The visual space seems to reverberate with them as if it were a drum. The surrounding hills rumble with the sound of a truck, and the rumble and the color-shape of the hills become one and the same gesture.

I feel that the world is on something in somewhat the same way that a color photograph is on a film, underlying and connecting the patches of color, though the film here is a dense rain of energy.

I see that there is always something insincere about trying to be sincere, as if I were to say openly, “The statement that I am now making is a lie.” There seems to be something phony about every attempt to define myself, to be totally honest. The trouble is that I can’t see the back, much less the inside, of my head. I can’t be honest because I don’t fully know what I am. Consciousness peers out from a center which it cannot see — and that is the root of the matter.

I try to go deeper, sinking thought and feeling down and down to their ultimate beginnings. What do I mean by loving myself?

At root, there is simply no way of separating self from other, self-love from other-love. All knowledge of self is knowledge of other, and all knowledge of other knowledge of self.

The “myself” which I am beginning to recognize, which I had forgotten but actually know better than anything else, goes far back beyond my childhood, beyond the time when adults confused me and tried to tell me that I was someone else; when, because they were bigger and stronger, they could terrify me with their imaginary fears and bewilder and outface me in the complicated game that I had not yet learned.

Ordinary thinking conceals polarity and relativity because it employs terms, the terminals or ends, the poles, neglecting what lies between them. The difference of front and back, to be and not to be, hides their unity and mutuality,

If the square may be defined as one who takes the game seriously, one must admire him for the very depth of his involvement, for the courage to be so far-out that he doesn’t know where he started.

I can see people just pretending not to see that they are avatars of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, that the cells of their bodies aren’t millions of gods, that the dust isn’t a haze of jewels. How solemnly they would go through the act of not understanding me if I were to step up and say, “Well, who do you think you’re kidding? Come off it, Shiva, you old rascal! It’s a great act, but it doesn’t fool me.” But the conscious ego doesn’t know that it is something which that divine organ, the body, is only pretending to be. When people go to a guru, a master of wisdom, seeking a way out of darkness, all he really does is to humor them in their pretense until they are outfaced into dropping it. He tells nothing, but the twinkle in his eye speaks to the unconscious — “You know … You know!”

Understand

“The best way is to understand yourself, and then you will understand everything.

So when you try hard to make your own way, you will help others, and you will be helped by others.

Before you make your own way you cannot help anyone, and no one can help you.”

― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice

Shunryu Suzuki

“You should not have any remains after you do something. But this does not mean to forget all about it. In order not to leave any traces, when you do something, you should do it with your whole body and mind; you should be concentrated on what you do. You should do it completely, like a good bonfire. You should not be a smoky fire. You should burn yourself completely. If you do not burn yourself completely, a trace of yourself will be left in what you do.”
― Shunryu Suzuki

Appreciate

“Now it is raining, but we don't know what will happen in the next moment. By the time we go out it may be a beautiful day, or a stormy day. Since we don't know, let's appreciate the sound of the rain now.”
― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice

Thoughts

“In zazen, leave your front door and your back door open. Let thoughts come and go. Just don't serve them tea.”
― Shunryu Suzuki

Big Mind

“Before we were born we had no feeling; we were one with the universe. This is called "mind-only," or "essence of mind," or "big mind," After we are separated by birth from this oneness, as the water falling from the waterfall is separated by the wind and rocks, then we have feeling. You have difficulty because you have feeling. You attach to the feeling you have without knowing just how this kind of feeling is created. When you do not realize that you are one with the river, or one with the universe, you have fear. Whether it is separated into drops or not, water is water. Our life and death are the same thing. When we realize this fact we have no fear of death anymore, and we have no actual difficulty in our life.”
― Shunryu Suzuki

Waves

“Waves are the practice of the water.”
― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice

One With Everything

“Whereever you are, you are one with the clouds and one with the sun and the stars you see. You are one with everything. That is more true than I can say, and more true than you can hear.”
― Shunryu Suzuki

Shunru Suzuki

“When you listen to someone, you should give up all your preconceived ideas and your subjective opinions; you should just listen to him, just observe what his way is. We put very little emphasis on right and wrong or good and bad. We just see things as they are with him, and accept them. This is how we communicate with each other. Usually when you listen to some statement, you hear it as a kind of echo of yourself. You are actually listening to your own opinion. If it agrees with your opinion you may accept it, but if it does not, you will reject it or you may not even really hear it.”
― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice

Alan Watts

“You are an aperture through which the universe is looking at and exploring itself.”
― Alan W. Watts

Dream

I dreamed I was playing my accordion with both hands and having fun improvising.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Joshua Nash

Where anxiety pulls us away from the present moment and into our minds, slowing down brings us back to the body, which always exists in the present moment.
-Joshua Nash
Article

A Small Circus

After shoveling my front and back steps and sidewalk I took Romeo for a downtown walk. It was still snowing. I spotted a person in a wheelchair behind the baseball field at Saint Germain. At first I wasn't sure if he was meditating on the beautiful snow or if he was stuck. I said hello. He asked for a push. Sure, where'd you like to go? I asked. To the bus stop, he replied. I introduced him to Romeo and then pushed him while holding Romeo on the leash. We toodled along crossing the Elks Club parking lot. Romeo loved it orbiting like a lopsided satellite. Then we got stuck. The man tried to get the wheels moving by lunging forward. He was a huge guy. I suggested he do nothing because both of us pushing sabotaged the momentum. I pushed without him and it worked. We got stuck half a dozen times. I would remind him to do nothing and then I'd push us out. Romeo was having a blast and wasn't afraid of the man or his wheelchair or his prosthetic leg. I was wearing my highway department yellow glow vest and Romeo had on his red coat so we were visible. We must've looked like a small circus. The sidewalks were un-plowed and the streets were like unbaked pie dough. I didn't want us to get caught crossing as traffic was heading our way. We made it across the main street. Then we got stuck trying to get up the Bank of America driveway next to the bus stop. I thought 'turn him around' (physics!) and then I was able to pull him up the ramp. He caught the bus to the VA Hospital in Providence.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Baryshnikov Eats...

I don't drink milk, and I don't eat bread, pasta or rice. But I eat a lot of meat, chicken, fish and salads.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Can I Do This?

Although I don't gamble in life - I've never played poker - I do gamble on stage. I gamble with myself: 'Can I do this?'
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Painterly

Everything I do, it's a bit painterly. I like being surrounded by objects, mostly on paper. I like the images. I like the painting. I like good photography. It's something that makes me an emotional connection, and I feel comfortable around it.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Breath

It's like being an athlete; you get into a certain shape where you really have the right wind, because it's all to do with breath. Because singing and dancing at the same time is not easy!
- Liza Minnelli

Point of View

I think that's the greatest gift one can have: point of view. You know? I've come to believe that if you have a bad memory of something, change it.
- Liza Minnelli

Being Healthy

Never stop moving, or you'll stop moving. I go to dance class every morning, and it's just good to stay strong; I like being healthy.
- Liza Minnelli

Liza Minnelli

Dream on it. Let your mind take you to places you would like to go, and then think about it and plan it and celebrate the possibilities. And don't listen to anyone who doesn't know how to dream.
― Liza Minnelli

I've said it before, but it's absolutely true: My mother gave me my drive, but my father gave me my dreams. Thanks to him, I could see a future.
- Liza Minnelli

It was no great tragedy being Judy Garland's daughter. I had tremendously interesting childhood years - except they had little to do with being a child.
- Liza Minnelli

Reality is something you rise above.
― Liza Minnelli

Kindness

“Kindness, I’ve discovered, is everything in life.”
― Isaac Bashevis Singer

Isaac Bashevis Singer

“When you betray somebody else, you also betray yourself.”
― Isaac Bashevis Singer

Life

“Life is God's novel. Let him write it.”
― Isaac Bashevis Singer

Working is Living

Working is living to me.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

You cannot be happy with your family while being personally unhappy with your work. It's a Catch-22 kind of thing.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

So Important

I think art education, especially in this country, which government pretty much ignores, is so important for young people.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Performer

I am a performer. I go on stage and make a fool of myself.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Look

When I see people on the street, I look at how they walk. It's like a signature, a fingerprint.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Essence

The essence of all art is to have pleasure in giving pleasure.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Beyond

I found that dance, music, and literature is how I made sense of the world... it pushed me to think of things bigger than life's daily routines... to think beyond what is immediate or convenient.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Revealing

The body cannot lie. You cannot be somebody else onstage, no matter how good of an actor or dancer or singer you are. When you open your arms, move your finger, the audience knows who you are, you know.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

When a body moves, it's the most revealing thing. Dance for me a minute, and I'll tell you who you are.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

Baryshnikov

I do not try to dance better than anyone else. I only try to dance better than myself.
- Mikhail Baryshnikov

To Be Spontaneous

“It takes at least five years of rigorous training to be spontaneous.”
― Martha Graham

The Body Says

“To me, the body says what words cannot. I believe that dance was the first art.”
― Martha Graham

Soul's Weather

“Movement never lies. It is a barometer telling the state of the soul's weather to all who can read it.”
― Martha Graham

Discovery

“ Dancing is just discovery, discovery, discovery.”
― Martha Graham

Chosen

“People have asked me why I chose to be a dancer. I did not choose. I was chosen to be a dancer, and with that, you live all your life. ”
― Martha Graham, Blood Memory

Martha Graham

“What people in the world think of you is really none of your business.”
― Martha Graham

Messengers

“Dancers are the messengers of the gods.”
― Martha Graham

Passion

“Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance. Great dancers are great because of their passion.”
― Martha Graham

Dance

“Dance is the hidden language of the soul.”
― Martha Graham

We Learn by Practice

“I believe that we learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living, the principles are the same. In each, it is the performance of a dedicated precise set of acts, physical or intellectual, from which comes shape of achievement, a sense of one's being, a satisfaction of spirit. One becomes, in some area, an athlete of God. Practice means to perform, over and over again in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire. Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired.”
― Martha Graham

Martha Graham

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. ... No artist is pleased. [There is] no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others”
― Martha Graham

Two Conversations

“There are two conversations going on at the same time: the story and a conversation about how the story is being told.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Myth

“Presuming that there is such a thing as "progress" when it comes to music, and that music is "better" now than it used to be, is typical of the high self-regard of those who live in the present. It is a myth. Creativity doesn't "improve.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Simplicity

“Simplicity is a kind of transparency in which subtle nuances can have outsize effects. When everything is visible and appears to be dumb, that’s when the details take on larger meanings.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Staring at the Sea

“I like a good story and I also like staring at the sea-- do I have to choose between the two?”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

David Byrne

“It can often seem that those in power don't want us to enjoy making things for ourselves - they'd prefer to establish a cultural hierarchy that devalues our amateur efforts and encourages consumption rather than creation.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Live Performances

“As music becomes less of a thing--a cylinder, a cassette, a disc--and more ephemeral, perhaps we will begin to assign an increasing value to live performances again.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Trust That

“To some extent I happily don't know what I'm doing. I feel that it's an artist's responsibility to trust that.”
― David Byrne

Narrative

“Living "in" a story, being part of a narrative, is much more satisfying than living without one. I don't always know what narrative it is, because I'm living my life and not always reflecting on it, but as I edit these pages I am aware that I have an urge to see my sometimes random wandering as having a plot, a purpose guided by some underlying story.”
― David Byrne, Bicycle Diaries

A Machine

“Creative work is more accurately a machine that digs down and finds stuff, emotional stuff that will someday be raw material that can be used to produce more stuff, stuff like itself - clay to be available for future use. ”
― David Byrne, Bicycle Diaries

David Byrne

“I sense the world might be more dreamlike, metaphorical, and poetic than we currently believe--but just as irrational as sympathetic magic when looked at in a typically scientific way. I wouldn't be surprised if poetry--poetry in the broadest sense, in the sense of a world filled with metaphor, rhyme, and recurring patterns, shapes, and designs--is how the world works. The world isn't logical, it's a song.”
― David Byrne, Bicycle Diaries

Be Fascinated

“Sometimes it's a form of love just to talk to somebody that you have nothing in common with and still be fascinated by their presence.”
― David Byrne

David Byrne

“In musical performances one can sense that the person on stage is having a good time even if they're singing a song about breaking up or being in a bad way. For an actor this would be anathema, it would destroy the illusion, but with singing one can have it both ways. As a singer, you can be transparent and reveal yourself on stage, in that moment, and at the same time be the person whose story is being told in the song. Not too many kinds of performance allow that.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Invisible Theater

“I also realized that there were lots of unacknowledged theater forms going on all around. Our lives are filled with performances that have been so woven into our daily routine that the artificial and performative aspect has slipped into invisibility.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Expectations

“One forgets that part of one's performance is one's history—or sometimes the lack of it. You're playing against what an audience knows, what they expect. This seems to be true of all performers; there's baggage that gets carried into the venue that we can't see.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Security Theater

“My favorite term for a new kind of performance is "security theater." In this genre, we watch as ritualized inspections and patdowns create the illusion of security. It's a form that has become common since 9/11, and even the government agencies that participate in this activity acknowledge,off the record, that it is indeed a species of theater.”
― David Byrne, How Music Works

Laundry

“I've buried a lot of my laundry in the back yard.”
― Phyllis Diller

Sock Mysteries

Last night when I came home from the laundromat and hung the clothes on the line I discovered a lone black ankle sock. It was someone elses.
Last night when making the bed I discovered our Christmas sock it had been missing for a month!

Sea Monsters

“Men really do need sea-monsters in their personal oceans.”
― John Steinbeck, The Log from the Sea of Cortez

Steinbeck

“We have only one story. All novels, all poetry, are built on the neverending contest in ourselves of good and evil. And it occurs to me that evil must constantly respawn, while good, while virtue, is immortal. Vice has always a new fresh young face, while virtue is venerable as nothing else in the world is.”
― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Books

“I guess there are never enough books.”
― John Steinbeck, A John Steinbeck Encyclopedia

Born Lost

“I was born lost and take no pleasure in being found.”
― John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America

Scars

“To be alive at all is to have scars. ”
― John Steinbeck, The Winter of Our Discontent

Other Human Beings

“No man really knows about other human beings. The best he can do is to suppose that they are like himself.”
― John Steinbeck, The Winter of Our Discontent

Steinbeck

“Do you take pride in your hurt? Does it make you seem large and tragic? ...Well, think about it. Maybe you're playing a part on a great stage with only yourself as audience.”
― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Steinbeck

“My imagination will get me a passport to hell one day.”
― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Johnny Cash

“I have tried drugs and a little of everything else, and there is nothing in the world more soul-satisfying than having the kingdom of God building inside you and growing.”
― Johnny Cash

“I don't have Paul's calling - I'm not out there being all things to all men to win them for Christ - but sometimes I can be a signpost. Sometimes I can sow a seed. And post-hole diggers and seed sowers are mighty important in the building of the Kingdom.”
― Johnny Cash, Cash

Johnny Cash

“This business I'm in is different. It's special. The people around me feel like brothers and sisters. We hardly know each other, but we're that close; somehow there's been an immediate bonding between total strangers. We share each other's triumphs, and when one of us gets hurt, we all bleed - it's corny, I know, but it's true. I've never experienced anything like this before. It's great. It turns up the heat in life.”
― Johnny Cash, Cash

Johnny and June

“There's unconditional love there. You hear that phrase a lot but it's real with me and her [June Carter]. She loves me in spite of everything, in spite of myself. She has saved my life more than once. She's always been there with her love, and it has certainly made me forget the pain for a long time, many times. When it gets dark and everybody's gone home and the lights are turned off, it's just me and her.”
― Johnny Cash

“Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry, I got on my knees and told her that I was going to marry her some day. We were both married to someone else at the time. ‘Ring Of Fire’—June and Merle Kilgore wrote that song for me-that’s the way our love affair was. We fell madly in love and we worked together all the time, toured together all the time, and when the tour was over we both had to go home to other people. It hurt.”
― Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash

“I love songs about horses, railroads, land, Judgment Day, family, hard times, whiskey, courtship, marriage, adultery, separation, murder, war, prison, rambling, damnation, home, salvation, death, pride, humor, piety, rebellion, patriotism, larceny, determination, tragedy, rowdiness, heartbreak and love. And Mother. And God.”
― Johnny Cash

John Steinbeck

“Try to understand men. If you understand each other you will be kind to each other. Knowing a man well never leads to hate and almost always leads to love.”

I Love Weather

“I love weather. I'm a connoisseur of weather. Wherever my travels take me, the first thing I do is turn on the weather channel and see what's going on, what's coming. I like to know about regional weather patterns, how storms are created in different altitudes, what kinds of clouds are forming or dissipating or blowing through, where the winds are coming from, where they've been. That's not a passion everybody shares, I know, but I don't believe there are any people on earth who, properly sheltered, don't feel the peace inside a summer rain and the cleansing it brings, the renewal of the earth in its aftermath.”
― Johnny Cash, Cash

Johnny Cash

“Sometimes I am two people. Johnny is the nice one. Cash causes all the trouble. They fight.”
― Johnny Cash

One Story

“I believe that there is one story in the world, and only one. . . . Humans are caught—in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too—in a net of good and evil. . . . There is no other story. A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean questions: Was it good or was it evil? Have I done well—or ill?”
― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Choose Love

“All your life, you will be faced with a choice. You can choose love or hate…I choose love.”
― Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash

“You build on failure. You use it as a stepping stone. Close the door on the past. You don't try to forget the mistakes, but you don't dwell on it. You don't let it have any of your energy, or any of your time, or any of your space.”
― Johnny Cash

John Steinbeck

“All great and precious things are lonely.”
― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Steinbeck

“All war is a symptom of man's failure as a thinking animal.”
― John Steinbeck

Carried in a Pouch

Marsupials are any members of the mammalian infraclass Marsupialia. All extant marsupials are endemic to Australasia and the Americas. A distinctive characteristic common to these species is that most of the young are carried in a pouch. Well-known marsupials include kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, possums, opossums, wombats, and Tasmanian devils. Some lesser-known marsupials are the potoroo and the quokka.
-Wikipedia

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Anthony Bourdain

“I don't have to agree with you to like you or respect you.”
― Anthony Bourdain

Learn from Them

“If you’re twenty-two, physically fit, hungry to learn and be better, I urge you to travel – as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them – wherever you go.”
― Anthony Bourdain, Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook

Anthony Bourdain

“No one understands and appreciates the American Dream of hard work leading to material rewards better than a non-American.”
― Anthony Bourdain, Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly

Anthony Bordain

“We know, for instance, that there is a direct, inverse relationship between frequency of family meals and social problems. Bluntly stated, members of families who eat together regularly are statistically less likely to stick up liquor stores, blow up meth labs, give birth to crack babies, commit suicide, or make donkey porn. If Little Timmy had just had more meatloaf, he might not have grown up to fill chest freezers with Cub Scout parts.”
― Anthony Bourdain, Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook

Anthony Bourdain

“If I'm an advocate for anything, it's to move. As far as you can, as much as you can. Across the ocean, or simply across the river. The extent to which you can walk in someone else's shoes or at least eat their food, it's a plus for everybody.

Open your mind, get up off the couch, move.”
― Anthony Bourdain

Rebecca Tate

To the Editor:

Many treatments for drug addiction today are flawed; even recovery using medication like methadone or buprenorphine might not be the right way to approach such a problem.

It is time for society to change the way we view drug users and their path to recovery. People who choose to go into rehab or who take medication need to be able to form healthy bonds with the people around them, and not be seen solely as addicts.

There is a lot of controversy regarding drug treatment, but the critical factor that recurs in all treatment plans is the mind-set of society.

Addiction is ultimately a symptom of disconnection; such symptoms cannot be treated by casting people out from society. We should indeed recognize that medication is as valid as any treatment, but we should also think about changing our own mind-set, if only to help people recover.

REBECCA TATE
SANTA CATARINA PINULA,
GUATEMALA

source

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Balanced

“Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralysed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds' wings.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, The Essential Rumi

Silence

“In Silence there is eloquence. Stop weaving and see how the pattern improves.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Hunting

“You wander from room to room
Hunting for the diamond necklace
That is already around your neck!”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

The Cure

“The cure for pain is in the pain.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

“These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, The Essential Rumi

Rumi

“You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Blossoms

“But listen to me. For one moment
quit being sad. Hear blessings
dropping their blossoms
around you.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“When you go through a hard period,
When everything seems to oppose you,
... When you feel you cannot even bear one more minute,
NEVER GIVE UP!
Because it is the time and place that the course will divert!”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, The Essential Rumi

In Love

“Wherever you are, and whatever you do, be in love.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“And you? When will you begin that long journey into yourself?”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Be melting snow.
Wash yourself of yourself.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, The Essential Rumi

Sorrow

“Sorrow prepares you for joy. It violently sweeps everything out of your house, so that new joy can find space to enter. It shakes the yellow leaves from the bough of your heart, so that fresh, green leaves can grow in their place. It pulls up the rotten roots, so that new roots hidden beneath have room to grow. Whatever sorrow shakes from your heart, far better things will take their place.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

A Gift

“Suffering is a gift. In it is hidden mercy.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Guest House

“This being human is a guest house. Every morning is a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor...Welcome and entertain them all. Treat each guest honorably. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Be empty of worrying.
Think of who created thought!

Why do you stay in prison
When the door is so wide open?”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, The Essential Rumi

Let Yourself

“Let yourself be drawn by the stronger pull of that which you truly love.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Grateful

“Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Everything in the universe is within you. Ask all from yourself.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Hope

“Where there is ruin, there is hope for a treasure.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Silence

“Silence is the language of god,
All else is poor translation.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Words

“Raise your words, not voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Bewilderment

“Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, Masnavi i Man'avi, the spiritual couplets of Maula

Ignore Those

“Ignore those that make you fearful and sad, that degrade you back towards disease and death.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Soul

“My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that, and I intend to end up there.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Forget safety.
Live where you fear to live.
Destroy your reputation.
Be notorious.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“If you are irritated by every rub, how will your mirror be polished?”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Ralph Waldo Emerson

“What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Emerson

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Willing to Trust

“The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, not the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when you discover that someone else believes in you and is willing to trust you with a friendship.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Make Your Own

“Make your own Bible. Select and collect all the words and sentences that in all your readings have been to you like the blast of a trumpet.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Dare to Live

“Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself. Go forward and make your dreams come true.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Courage

“Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising that tempt you to believe your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires some of the same courage that a soldier needs. Peace has its victories, but it takes brave men and women to win them.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Emerson

“It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Complete Prose Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson

A Trail

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wild Air

“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Always do what you are afraid to do.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Emerson

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Beyon Ideas

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
and rightdoing there is a field.
I'll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass
the world is too full to talk about.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

You

“Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

What You Seek

“What you seek is seeking you.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Love Story

“The minute I heard my first love story,
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.
Lovers don't finally meet somewhere.
They're in each other all along.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi, The Illuminated Rumi

The Light

“The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Seek and Find

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Rumi

“Don’t grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form.”
― Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi

Friday, January 26, 2018

Frédéric Chopin

“When one does a thing, it appears good, otherwise one would not write it. Only later comes reflection, and one discards or accepts the thing. Time is the best censor, and patience a most excellent teacher.”
― Frédéric Chopin

Soul and Heart

“Bach is an astronomer, discovering the most marvelous stars. Beethoven challenges the universe. I only try to express the soul and the heart of man.”
― Frédéric Chopin

Chopin

“Simplicity is the final achievement. After one has played a vast quantity of notes and more notes, it is simplicity that emerges as the crowning reward of art.”
― Frédéric Chopin

Marx

“Surround yourself with people who make you happy. People who make you laugh, who help you when you’re in need. People who genuinely care. They are the ones worth keeping in your life. Everyone else is just passing through.”
― Karl Marx

Dare to Know!

“Dare to know! Have the courage to use your own intelligence!”
― Immanuel Kant

Heart of a Man

“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”
― Immanuel Kant

Immanuel Kant

“We are not rich by what we possess but by what we can do without.”
― Immanuel Kant

In The Very Gaze

“Evil resides in the very gaze which perceives evil all around itself.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Phenomenology of Spirit

“It is solely by risking life that freedom is obtained; . . . the individual who has not staked his or her life may, no doubt, be recognized as a person; but he or she has not attained the truth of this recognition as an independent self-consciousness.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, Phenomenology of Spirit

Independent

“To be independent of public opinion is the first formal condition of achieving anything great.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Passion

“Nothing great in the world was accomplished without passion.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Experience and History

“What experience and history teaches us is that people and governments have never learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

“We learn from history that we do not learn from history.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Hegel

“The valor that struggles is better than the weakness that endures.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

“The ignorant man is not free, because what confronts him is an alien world, something outside him and in the offing, on which he depends, without his having made this foreign world for himself and therefore without being at home in it by himself as in something his own. The impulse of curiosity, the pressure for knowledge, from the lowest level up to the highest rung of philosophical insight arises only from the struggle to cancel this situation of unfreedom and to make the world one's own in one's ideas and thought.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Hegel

“Everybody allows that to know any other science you must have first studied it, and that you can only claim to express a judgment upon it in virtue of such knowledge. Everybody allows that to make a shoe you must have learned and practised the craft of the shoemaker, though every man has a model in his own foot, and possesses in his hands the natural endowments for the operations required. For philosophy alone, it seems to be imagined, such study, care, and application are not in the least requisite.”
― Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Dream

I was in Jacob's house looking at polaroids of my parents dressed in costume at a party. As I looked at the images they became animated and alive like film clips.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Social Change: Don't Give Up

“Every great social change movement had moments where you had to convince yourself not to give up,” said Senator Murphy.
Article

Personalized Design

“The utility of the most functional object in the world will go to waste if potential users don’t connect with it and can’t see themselves using it,” said Donald Strum, a principal for product and graphic design at Michael Graves Architecture and Design. Graves’s firm has rethought, among many medical devices, walking sticks, so they work better and use interchangeable handles, colors and tips, which let customers personalize them.
Article

Keep Your Head Up

She found that children now compete with their parents’ devices for attention, resulting in a generation afraid of the spontaneity of a phone call or face-to-face interaction. Eye contact now seems to be optional, Dr. Turkle suggests, and sensory overload can often mean our feelings are constantly anesthetized.

“To treat the person standing in front of you as secondary to your phone, is usually, as the kids say, a micro-aggression,” he said.

Article

To Understand a Child...

“To understand a child we have to watch him at play, study him in his different moods; we cannot project upon him our own prejudices, hopes and fears, or mould him to fit the pattern of our desires. If we are constantly judging the child according to our personal likes and dislikes, we are bound to create barriers and hindrances in our relationship with him and in his relationships with the world. Unfortunately, most of us desire to shape the child in a way that is gratifying to our own vanities and idiosyncrasies; we find varying degrees of comfort and satisfaction in exclusive ownership and domination.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti, Education and the Significance of Life

The Beauty

“The soil in which the meditative mind can begin is the soil of everyday life, the strife, the pain, and the fleeting joy. It must begin there, and bring order, and from there move endlessly. But if you are concerned only with making order, then that very order will bring about its own limitation, and the mind will be its prisoner. In all this movement you must somehow begin from the other end, from the other shore, and not always be concerned with this shore or how to cross the river. You must take a plunge into the water, not knowing how to swim. And the beauty of meditation is that you never know where you are, where you are going, what the end is.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Awareness

“To be free of all authority, of your own and that of another, is to die to everything of yesterday, so that your mind is always fresh, always young, innocent, full of vigour and passion. It is only in that state that one learns and observes. And for this, a great deal of awareness is required, actual awareness of what is going on inside yourself, without correcting it or telling it what it should or should not be, because the moment you correct it you have established another authority, a censor.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti, Freedom from the Known

Krishnamurti

“It is love alone that leads to right action. What brings order in the world is to love and let love do what it will.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Krishnamurti

“[on the secret to a happy, content life]

Do you want to know what my secret is? I don’t mind what happens.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Thought

“Thought is so cunning, so clever, that it distorts everything for its own convenience.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti, Freedom from the Known

To Transform the World

“To transform the world, we must begin with ourselves; and what is important in beginning with ourselves is the intention. The intention must be to understand ourselves and not to leave it to others to transform themselves or to bring about a modified change through revolution, either of the left or of the right. It is important to understand that this is our responsibility, yours and mine...”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Love

“When I understand myself, I understand you, and out of that understanding comes love. Love is the missing factor; there is a lack of affection, of warmth in relationship; and because we lack that love, that tenderness, that generosity, that mercy in relationship, we escape into mass action which produces further confusion, further misery. We fill our hearts with blueprints for world reform and do not look to that one resolving factor which is love.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Krishnamurti: Understand the Problem

“If we can really understand the problem, the answer will come out of it, because the answer is not separate from the problem. ”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Krishnamurti

“We carry about us the burden of what thousands of people have said and the memories of all our misfortunes. To abandon all that is to be alone, and the mind that is alone is not only innocent but young -- not in time or age, but young, innocent, alive at whatever age -- and only such a mind can see that which is truth and that which is not measurable by words.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Joy

“It is only when the mind is free from the old that it meets everything anew, and in that there is joy.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Assertion of Belief

“The constant assertion of belief is an indication of fear.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Follow the Wandering

“Follow the wandering, the distraction, find out why the mind has wandered; pursue it, go into it fully. When the distraction is completely understood, then that particular distraction is gone. When another comes, pursue it also. ”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Happiness

“Happiness is strange; it comes when you are not seeking it. When you are not making an effort to be happy, then unexpectedly, mysteriously, happiness is there, born of purity, of a loveliness of being.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Transformation

“If you begin to understand what you are without trying to change it, then what you are undergoes a transformation.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Quiet, Still

“To understand the immeasurable, the mind must be extraordinarily quiet, still.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Education

“Governments want efficient technicians, not human beings, because human beings become dangerous to governments – and to organized religions as well. That is why governments and religious organizations seek to control education.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti, Education and the Significance of Life

Clarity

“The more you know yourself, the more clarity there is. Self-knowledge has no end - you don't come to an achievement, you don't come to a conclusion. It is an endless river.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

The Known

“One is never afraid of the unknown; one is afraid of the known coming to an end.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Truth

“It is truth that liberates, not your effort to be free.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti, The First and Last Freedom

Krishnamurti

“Freedom and love go together. Love is not a reaction. If I love you because you love me, that is mere trade, a thing to be bought in the market; it is not love. To love is not to ask anything in return, not even to feel that you are giving something- and it is only such love that can know freedom.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Jiddu Krishnamurti

“You must understand the whole of life, not just one little part of it. That is why you must read, that is why you must look at the skies, that is why you must sing, and dance, and write poems, and suffer, and understand, for all that is life.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Thank You, Sam Brinton

Sam Brinton is the head of advocacy and government affairs at the Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to L.G.B.T.Q. youth.
Article

The Afterlife

Found an open package of Oreos in the girls locker room. I just ate two. What fun. Perhaps is was a message from Anita. She made it to 101. She swam like a demon and loved cookies.

Susan Cain

“Use your natural powers—of persistence, concentration, insight, and sensitivity—to do work you love and work that matters. Solve problems, make art, think deeply.”
― Susan Cain, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

“We live with a value system that I call the Extrovert Ideal—the omnipresent belief that the ideal self is gregarious, alpha, and comfortable in the spotlight.”
― Susan Cain, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

“If personal space is vital to creativity, so is freedom from "peer pressure".”
― Susan Cain, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

Ursula K. Le Guin

It is very hard for evil to take hold of the unconsenting soul.”
— Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea, 1968. (Earthsea Cycles #1)

We live in capitalism. Its power seems inescapable. So did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art, and very often in our art - the art of words.”
— Ursula K. Le Guin, Speech at the National Book Awards upon receiving the US National Book Foundation’s media for distinguished contribution to American Letters on 19 November 2014.

I talk about the gods, I am an atheist. But I am an artist too, and therefore a liar. Distrust everything I say. I am telling the truth.”
— Ursula K. Le Guin, The Left Hand of Darkness, 1969.

When women speak truly they speak subversively — they can’t help it: if you’re underneath, if you’re kept down, you break out, you subvert. We are volcanoes. When we women offer our experience as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change. There are new mountains. That’s what I want – to hear you erupting. You young Mount St Helenses who don’t know the power in you – I want to hear you.”
—Ursula K. Le Guin, Bryn Mawr College commencement speech, 1986, published in the essay collection Dancing At The Edge of the World: Thoughts on Words, Women, Places, 1989.

“Love doesn't just sit there, like a stone, it has to be made, like bread; remade all the time, made new.”
― Ursula K. Le Guin, The Lathe of Heaven

“The creative adult is the child who has survived.”
― Ursula K. Le Guin

“People who deny the existence of dragons are often eaten by dragons. From within.”
― Ursula K. Le Guin, The Wave in the Mind: Talks & Essays on the Writer, the Reader & the Imagination

“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”
― Ursula K. Le Guin, The Left Hand of Darkness

“We read books to find out who we are. What other people, real or imaginary, do and think and feel... is an essential guide to our understanding of what we ourselves are and may become.”
― Ursula K. Le Guin

“We're each of us alone, to be sure. What can you do but hold your hand out in the dark?”
― Ursula K. Le Guin, The Wind's Twelve Quarters, Volume 1

Chandler

“A really good detective never gets married.”
― Raymond Chandler

Chandler on Writing

“The faster I write the better my output. If I'm going slow, I'm in trouble. It means I'm pushing the words instead of being pulled by them.”
― Raymond Chandler

“Technique alone is never enough. You have to have passion. Technique alone is just an embroidered potholder.”
― Raymond Chandler

“There are two kinds of truth: the truth that lights the way and the truth that warms the heart. The first of these is science, and the second is art. Neither is independent of the other or more important than the other. Without art science would be as useless as a pair of high forceps in the hands of a plumber. Without science art would become a crude mess of folklore and emotional quackery. The truth of art keeps science from becoming inhuman, and the truth of science keeps art from becoming ridiculous."

(Great Thought, February 19, 1938)”
― Raymond Chandler, The Notebooks of Raymond Chandler; and English Summer: A Gothic Romance

“Everything a writer learns about the art or craft of fiction takes just a little away from his need or desire to write at all. In the end he knows all of the tricks and has nothing to say.”
― Raymond Chandler

“A writer who is afraid to overreach himself is as useless as a general who is afraid to be wrong.”
― Raymond Chandler, Pearls are a Nuisance

“Don't ever write anything you don't like yourself and if you do like it, don't take anyone's advice about changing it. They just don't know.”
― Raymond Chandler

“The most durable thing in writing is style, and style is the single most valuable investment a writer can make with his time.”
― Raymond Chandler

“The most durable thing in writing is style. It is a projection of personality and you have to have a personality before you can project it. It is the product of emotion and perception.”
― Raymond Chandler

“The challenge is to write about real things magically.”
― Raymond Chandler, Selected Letters

“The actual writing is what you live for. The rest is something you have to get through in order to arrive at the point.”
― Raymond Chandler

Raymond Chandler

“It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained-glass window.”
― Raymond Chandler, Farewell, My Lovely

Farewell, My Lovely

“I needed a drink, I needed a lot of life insurance, I needed a vacation, I needed a home in the country. What I had was a coat, a hat and a gun. I put them on and went out of the room.”
― Raymond Chandler, Farewell, My Lovely

Magic

“Without magic, there is no art. Without art, there is no idealism. Without idealism, there is no integrity. Without integrity, there is nothing but production.”
― Raymond Chandler

Lashes

“She lowered her lashes until they almost cuddled her cheeks and slowly raised them again, like a theatre curtain. I was to get to know that trick. That was supposed to make me roll over on my back with all four paws in the air.”
― Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep

Inconspicuous

“He looked about as inconspicuous as a tarantula on a slice of angel food cake.”
― Raymond Chandler

The Long Goodbye

“The French have a phrase for it. The bastards have a phrase for everything and they are always right. To say goodbye is to die a little.”
― Raymond Chandler, The Long Goodbye

Chandler

“Throw up into your typewriter every morning. Clean up every noon.”
― Raymond Chandler

Chandler

“It seemed like a nice neighborhood to have bad habits in.”
― Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep

Theater of Farewell

Today I am saying goodbye to two friends
In the theater of farewell

Just People

Jennifer always referred to her mother as Harriet. They were more like sisters anyway. When I referred to my parents by their first names (behind their back, of course) something magical happened. It freed me, releasing me from their titles. My mother, my father, my sister, my brother. I decided no more possessive words. No more ownership. I don't own them and they don't own me. They're just people. Take them out of the drama. Give them back their names.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Doorbell

I was in my studio when I heard the doorbell. I came down and it was the young homeless couple standing in the rain with their cat in a carrier. I grabbed an umbrella from the house and held it over them. "We just got thrown out of our friends basement," the young man said.
"He isn't a friend. Friends don't do that," the young woman said.
"He's a work buddy," the man said.
"Did you call Lin?" I asked.
"No. Not yet. It's been crazy," the man said.
"On the weekend we had to go to the hospital for an abscess in his tooth," the woman said.
"And we think our cat might be pregnant."
"Lin's ready to help. I know it's scary to call someone you don't know and ask for help, but she's ready."
"She's just going to tell us...," the man said.
"You don't know what she'll say," I replied.
"You're right," the man admitted.
"How about you call her now and I'll stay right here," I said handing him her phone number. "She's expecting to hear from you. You can say I am phoning from Emily's back door. If you have to stop the call for your next appointment you can tell her 'we may get interrupted'".
The man agreed and made the call. He introduced himself and listened.
"She has a few meetings but she's going to call us back at 2PM," he said.
"You did it, yay," I cheered. "Do you feel better?"
"Yes," he said.
"You broke the ice. Now you can go to your next appointment and you have made contact with Lin. Hang in there. Things can only get better. Trust that the local network of support will come through for you."

Pema Chödrön

“The most difficult times for many of us are the ones we give ourselves.”
― Pema Chödrön, When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice For Difficult Times

Fear

“Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.”
― Pema Chödrön, When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times

The Perfect Teacher

“…feelings like disappointment, embarrassment, irritation, resentment, anger, jealousy, and fear, instead of being bad news, are actually very clear moments that teach us where it is that we’re holding back. They teach us to perk up and lean in when we feel we’d rather collapse and back away. They’re like messengers that show us, with terrifying clarity, exactly where we’re stuck. This very moment is the perfect teacher, and, lucky for us, it’s with us wherever we are.”
― Pema Chödrön

Karma

“People get into a heavy-duty sin and guilt trip, feeling that if things are going wrong, that means that they did something bad and they are being punished. That's not the idea at all. The idea of karma is that you continually get the teachings that you need to open your heart. To the degree that you didn't understand in the past how to stop protecting your soft spot, how to stop armoring your heart, you're given this gift of teachings in the form of your life, to give you everything you need to open further.”
― Pema Chödrön

If We Learn...

“If we learn to open our hearts, anyone, including the people who drive us crazy, can be our teacher.”
― Pema Chödrön

The Only Reason

“The only reason we don't open our hearts and minds to other people is that they trigger confusion in us that we don't feel brave enough or sane enough to deal with. To the degree that we look clearly and compassionately at ourselves, we feel confident and fearless about looking into someone else's eyes. ”
― Pema Chödrön

Sky

“You are the sky. Everything else – it’s just the weather.”
― Pema Chödrön

Shared Humanity

“Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It's a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.”
― Pema Chödrön, The Places That Scare You: A Guide to Fearlessness in Difficult Times

Pema Chödrön

“The most fundamental aggression to ourselves, the most fundamental harm we can do to ourselves, is to remain ignorant by not having the courage and the respect to look at ourselves honestly and gently.”
― Pema Chödrön, When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times

Julius Lester

Fifteen years ago, Daniella Silver was a student of Lester’s. From her time in Lester’s class, one statement in particular stood out to her.

He once said, “Each person sitting in my class represents a story. How can I be a good teacher if I don’t know their story, because their stories will determine how they will hear me and what, if anything, they will learn?

“It’s important we tell our stories and we listen to those that came before us,” Silver said. “To know who we are and where we are going, we need to know where we came from.”

Through his outspokenness on the radio, in literature and in the classroom, Lester left a legacy of authenticity.

“Every time I would talk to [Lester], I saw and felt [his] heart truly listening to me,” Silver said.

According to Melnick, “there seemed to be a real soul there in everything he did.”

“What you saw was who he was.”

Article

Dream

I dreamed I was in a grand library in Newport Rhode Island. I was being lifted high up on a cast iron chair. The chair was moving fast along a track suspended from the ceiling. I could barely hang on. I studied the architectural details. There was even carved ivory. All things that I would have missed had I stayed on the ground.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Swimming Erased My Mind

I went to the pool. My favorite lady was there. I hadn't seen her in months. She loves Romeo and she used to train dogs for the blind. When I got home I forgot I was proofing six loaves of sourdough. Swimming had erased my mind. I set three different kitchen timers so I wouldn't forget. One timer was for steeping tea, one for pressure-cooking chick peas and the other timer was for baking bread.

Film: Faces, Places

A 33 year old graffiti artist and a 88 year old independent film maker team up to do photo murals!
take a look atthe trailer

Lydia Davis

https://poetrydispatch.wordpress.com/2009/01/16/lydia-davis-new-years-resolution/

Divine Intervention on the Way to the Laundromat

They stopped to say hi to Romeo. "You remember me, I used to live down the street," the young man said.
"Oh yeah, I didn't recognize you with your hood on," I said. "How are you?"
"We're homeless," he said.
"In these temperatures we've been afraid of dying in our sleep," the young woman said. "We're on our way to the church soup kitchen to get lunch."
"Ask the folks there for help and keep on asking. Try not to let shame hold you back. In Woonsocket we're all connected. No need for shame, we can figure something out. There are amazing pastors in the City and many other groups of people that can help." I gave them three names.
When I got home I wrote emails to the three folks I sent them to. One of them wrote back right away.
"I am ready to help them," she said. "Here's my cell phone have them call me."
"I will keep my eyes out for them," I said.
Sunday morning our washing machine conked out. I fished out the wet clothes and put them in my green plastic laundry basket.
"I'll take them to the laundromat around the corner," I told my husband, fishing around for quarters.
As I drove out of our driveway I thought "If I go left, it's closer."
"Go right, you might run into those homeless kids," my thoughts commanded. So I turned right and a second later I saw the young couple walking down my street. I pulled over and jumped out. "Hi guys. Wow! I have been hoping to find you. I sent out messages for the past few days and one of the people responded right away and she told me she's ready to meet with you and help you find shelter. Let's turn around. I will run inside my house and get you her cell-phone number." When I came out I said, "Now you know where I live, ring the bell if you have a problem."
"Thank you, can we give you a hug," they said.
"Thank you, you guys made my day. I have been eager to find you, hoping you were safe."

Be Yourself

“When you are content to simply be yourself and don't compare or compete, everyone will respect you.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

Those Who Know

“Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

Traveler

“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.”
― Lao Tzu

Flow

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”
― Lao Tzu

The Best

“The best fighter is never angry.”
― Lao Tzu

Time

“Time is a created thing. To say 'I don't have time,' is like saying, 'I don't want to.”
― Lao Tzu

Lao Tzu

“Because one believes in oneself, one doesn't try to convince others. Because one is content with oneself, one doesn't need others' approval. Because one accepts oneself, the whole world accepts him or her.”
― Lao Tzu

Inner Courage

“A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

Lao Tzu

“If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.”
― Lao Tzu

Rejoice

“Be content with what you