1 May 2005
How to make a decision
The one who is
deciding is you, but it is not your conscious, analytic self.
Trust your internal
process. Observe it. Write down your thoughts, your dreams, your
fantasies. Don't take
sides. Have patience with the process, and protect it from pressure to
produce a result. Allow yourself to be
fascinated with all that you notice and record, while strictly avoiding
with your process.
30 April 2005
Japan is showing us the way
into a future when population will be higher and resources scarcer. Recycling
is part of everyone’s way of life. Household garbage is collected 7
days a week in different bins for burnables, compostables, aluminum,
steel, plastic, glass, and paper. Energy taxes keep gas
prices over $4/gallon, and consumption low. There are workable public
transportation systems in cities and high-speed rail between cities. In
2001, a national law mandated recycling of household appliances, and in 2003
a similar law for computers and monitors went into effect. A
fee is added
when each unit is sold that supports the manufacturer to take back the unit
when it becomes broken or obsolete, extract reusable parts, and separate the
remaining chasis into recyclable materials.
29 April 2005
Fog lifted early, I worked in the garden.
Hummingbirds were stopping over honeysuckle flowers.
There was no thing on earth I wanted to possess.
I knew no one worth my envying him.
What ever evil I had suffered, I forgot.
To think that I was once the same man did not embarrass me.
In my body I felt no pain.
When straightening up, I saw the blue sea and sails.
28 April 2005
"Real courage is when
you know you're licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it
through no matter what."
'Scout' Finch, narrator of To
Kill A Mockingbird, reminds us that the world is too complex for us
to know the full consequence of what we do, so we do the right thing out of
faith, and not just to achieve the right result.
Lee, born this day in 1926, wrote one novel which became an instant classic, and returned to
private life. "Most of what has been published on the doings of Miss Lee in the last many years is speculation."
27 April 2005
"This is your life, and
nobody is going to teach you, no book, no guru. You have to learn from
yourself, not from books. It is an endless thing, it is a fascinating thing,
and when you learn about yourself from yourself, out of that learning wisdom
"Cancer makes the fog lift. If
you want to beat it, you have to step up to the brink of your life and
demand to be heard."
26 April 2005
Work should feel
right. Our careers should nourish our souls. Each of us
deserves a way to make enough money to live on while doing work that is
satisfying and promotes our growth and learning through a
Barber talks about his choice to work in homeless shelters, helping
people who are crippled by severe mental illness. "I didn't know
it at the time, but I could not have picked a more helpful activity, for
myself and for my clients. In working with them, I was exposed to problems
entirely different from my own but they gave me a much needed perspective on
my own troublesome mental landscape.
"I also found that I was
good at the work, and that providing help to others was deeply satisfying,
exhilarating - and therapeutic."
Barber reminds us to shift
our focus from making ends meet to self-realization...even with the full
knowledge that economic realities and government policies often seem
perversely designed to thwart such choices. We must settle for nothing
from the Black Chair, by Charles Barber
25 April 2005
Sometimes a word or a phrase
implies the existence of an entire world-view. A few days ago, I first
came across this phrase, anoetic sentience, attributed to a
psychologist of that era when psychology was both a science and a branch of
Fredrick Stout (1860-1944).
In the spare prose of the
21st century, the phrase might come out as "consciousness without
content", or "pre-cognitive awareness".
20th century psychology
built an understanding of just how subjective are our perceptions.
That idealized state, the tabula
rasa on which our vision of the world is painted, simply doesn't
exist. There is no such thing as anoetic sentience.
To a scientist, anoetic
sentience might describes the ideal of empirical objectivity.
Science must observe the world with dispassionate precision, without any
pre-existing theoretical framework.
To a Buddhist, anoetic
sentience could well be the endpoint of meditation, the attainment of Zen