3 December 2004
Enough of town life. Today I move out of the house at Tse Chok Ling monastery and go into Vipassana retreat for the next 10 days. I met three people also sitting (errol, his father claude and anna von munich). We have a monkey-brain-fun night jabbering and laughing away. It will be really interesting to see them afterwards.
I finish teaching my computer skills class. They learned a lot, but most of it was Word, and they need mostly internet skills. But the connection is deadly slow, and the LHA center can't afford to keep dialed in for that long. At the end we did some Photoshop, just to expand their mind a bit and show them what really confusing software looks like. Word is bad enough, covered with features that few people use. Much of it is illogical, and I dont know how to use tables and pictures, but I can figure out how to make it work when I need to. Explaining it to people with little english is really hard. Why should a tibettan have to remember "Paste" ? What is pasting ? do i explain that back in the olden days people had to cut out peices of paper and paste them onto other peices ? who cares !? But we had some fun. Lots of people here who come up from Mysore (which has 20,000 tibettans) so they can learn english and computer. Lots of volunteers here, willing traveller/tourists who want to talk with tibettans. The Indians should be so lucky.
And I've taught Tashi and Sonam how to sing atomic dog: "why must I feel like that ? why must I chase the cat ? nothing but the dog in me. bow-wow-wow-yippe-yo-yippee-yay" when i finally hook them up to the ipod and play the original they go nuts, dancing like funk robots and howling. I leave them with a copy of "Please Kill Me : an oral history of punk rock". this should make them think twice about western culture. eg. "Sid Vicous took a handful of the speed, tossed it into the syringe and sucked water out of the toilet bowl, shook up, didn't even cook it and jacked it into his arm".
And today I go up the hill to sit and breathe for 10 days. Goodbye samsara. Have fun out here, okay ? Went to see the Matrix Reloaded last night. Just in case there was any good Insight, and just in case 2 hours of whirling loud special effects was good for preparing the mind for samatha (serenity on which the foundation of insight is built).
- kraftwerk hears the buddha turning the first wheel of dharma
- symmetry; the central channel
[Mark Mothersbaugh](http://www.mutato.com/beautifulmutants/html/gallery/mharper.html) (devo) did a beautiful art show of antique photos that he transforms by digitally making them symmetrical. Seeing a symmetrical face is very strange. His [attached article](http://www.mutato.com/beautifulmutants/statement.html) is well worth reading too. Rorsarch. A study of dancers (in Jamaica) showed that women were attracted to men who showed symmetry in their moves. [BBC](http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4550000.stm) A recent study said that many people still don't really understand how mirrors work. A robot in Japan now has "mirror image cognition" and can ...
- web2.0, hype and cynicism, pump and dump, craving and aversion
One of the amazing things I experienced while being in India for 6 months was a complete lack of cynicism. They have evil and greed and stupidity, but cynicism just isn't there. People don't worry about hype cycles or being cool or reacting to (anybody's) success with an immediate pull back (waiting to see when the back lash comes). Coming back to NYC was a total shock. Friends don't make eye contact with each other. People seem to be hiding ...
- Kashmiri Saffron
Kashmiri saffron is darker and stronger than most kinds. I bought about a gram in Himachal Pradesh India for a dollar or two, quite cheap. So now I'm making saffron basmati rice, thinking about them sitting up there in trouble. Its bad. The world isn't responding to the earthquake in the same way as they did the Tsunami. Partly because the Tsunami happened in vacation land, and was physically very unusual and bizarre. Also because international people look down on ...
- Full index for India