Dream states & the pursuit of truth 

24 04 2017

“Let us learn to dream; then we shall perhaps find the truth”- Kukule 

-Cormac McCarthy 

https://m.nautil.us/issue/47/consciousness/the-kekul-problem





if only we could all speak rhinoceros

13 10 2015

-What would you do if you had a magical cloak that could make you invisible?

-If I were invisible, I would head straight to the zoo to be with all the animals. I would climb into the cages and start talking to them.

The words of a lovely young man, around 6 years of age, who I had the privilege of speaking to when Kindred Studios opened its doors to the public this past weekend. Made me think of the extraordinary imagination of Leslie Bricuse and the intimate work of sculptor Georgiana Anstruther.

Oh what a wonderful world it would indeed become if we started talking (and listening) to the animals.





FREEDOM is: carving unknown own paths

20 01 2015

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CREATIVITY: the power of resistance

24 09 2014

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resistance is invisible

resistance is insidious

resistance and procrastination

resistance and self-doubt

resistance and mating

resistance can be beaten





BEING HUMAN: The UK’s First Humanities Festival Nov 15-23, 2014

12 09 2014

institute of philosophy

What does it mean to be human? How do we understand ourselves, our relationship to others and our place in nature? For centuries the humanities have addressed these questions. Artists, writers, philosophers, theologians and historians have considered who we are, how we live and what we value most. But are these long-standing questions changing in 2014? We are more connected than ever, yet we spend more time with smart phones and computers than face to face. The world is becoming smaller, yet the digital information we can access and store, even about ourselves, is vast and growing.  Developments in science and technology are moving fast, challenging our understanding of the self and society. What sense can we make of these changes and what challenges do we face? We need the humanities more than ever to help us address these issues and provide the means to question, interpret and explain the human predicament.

The festival is held as part of the School of Advanced Study’s 20th anniversary celebrations and draws on the success of the 2013 King’s College Festival of the Humanities. Being Human will be the UK’s first national festival of the humanities. Led by the School of Advanced Study, University of London in partnership with the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the British Academy, and universities, arts and cultural organisations across the UK, it will demonstrate the value, vitality and relevance of the humanities in 2014. Find out more at www.beinghumanfestival.org or follow the festival on Twitter at @BeingHumanFest.

http://www.sas.ac.uk/about-us/news/uk-s-first-national-humanities-festival-unveils-rich-programme-events

 

 





The Gods are all here because the Gods are in us

28 08 2014
 
see, all that we have here is all that we’ve always had
we have jealousy, tenderness, curses and gifts
but the plight of a people who have forgotten their myths
and imagine that somehow now is all that there is
is a sorry plight
all isolation and worry
the life in your veins is godly, heroic
you were born for greatness
you can believe that 
you can know it
you can take it from the tears of the poet…
 
– a spoken word performance by the extraordinary Kate Tempest , Brand New Ancients on Film




GREECE: admits us to a vision of the earth unravaged- V. Woolf

24 08 2014

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“In six pages of Proust we can find more complicated and varied emotions than in the whole of the Electra. But in the Electra or in the Antigone we are impressed by something different, by something perhaps more impressive — by heroism itself, by fidelity itself. In spite of the labour and the difficulty it is this that draws us back and back to the Greeks; the stable, the permanent, the original human being is to be found there. Violent emotions are needed to rouse him into action, but when thus stirred by death, by betrayal, by some other primitive calamity, Antigone and Ajax and Electra behave in the way in which we should behave thus struck down; the way in which everybody has always behaved; and thus we understand them more easily and more directly than we understand the characters in the Canterbury Tales. These are the originals, Chaucer’s the varieties of the human species.”

… “It is an exhausting process; to concentrate painfully upon the exact meaning of words; to judge what each admission involves; to follow intently, yet critically, the dwindling and changing of opinion as it hardens and intensifies into truth. Are pleasure and good the same? Can virtue be taught? Is virtue knowledge? The tired or feeble mind may easily lapse as the remorseless questioning proceeds; but no one, however weak, can fail, even if he does not learn more from Plato, to love knowledge better. For as the argument mounts from step to step, Protagoras yielding, Socrates pushing on, what matters is not so much the end we reach as our manner of reaching it.”

… “Truth, it seems, is various; Truth is to be pursued with all our faculties. Are we to rule out the amusements, the tendernesses, the frivolities of friendship because we love truth? Will truth be quicker found because we stop our ears to music and drink no wine, and sleep instead of talking through the long winter’s night? It is not to the cloistered disciplinarian mortifying himself in solitude that we are to turn, but to the well-sunned nature, the man who practises the art of living to the best advantage, so that nothing is stunted but some things are permanently more valuable than others.”

“Every word is reinforced by a vigour which pours out of olive-tree and temple and the bodies of the young.”

 

Excerpts from Virginia Woolf’s On Not Knowing Greek https://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/w/woolf/virginia/w91c/chapter3.html

 





Philomena: what would happen if we didn’t have any books in the world?

6 07 2014

An original song by Philomena (age 7)

(Thank you Song Academy for giving Philomena the gift of confidence)





Beauty is Sanskrit, the language that opens the heart

3 07 2014

– Luna (age 5)

Thank you St James for a wonderfully rich school year (and for giving my girls the gift of Sanskrit).

 

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Beauty is language, happiness is putting it to good use

28 06 2014

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Glimpses of Higher Truth

24 04 2014

It is written, “As the sun and its sheath, [so are the divine names] Havayah-Elokim” (Psalms 84:12).  God desired that the infinite light with which he creates the world (Havayah) should be sheathed and concealed within the definitive laws and patterns of nature (Elokim). . . . But seeing that the world could not endure an absolute concealment, God allowed glimmers of His infinite light to be glimpsed through the sheath. These glimmers are the souls of the righteous and the miracles recounted in the Torah. —Shaar Hayichud Veha’emunah (lessons in Tanya)

Since 1998, and after having experimented with various creative forms to highlight the relationship between art and science, TOBIA RAVA’ has been carrying out research into the mystic elements of Hebraism, ranging from the Kabbalah to Chassidism, suggesting a new symbolic approach through the infinite possibilities of numerical combinations. His research should in no way be seen as a reduction of mystic to mystery or esoterics but instead as a visualisation of a deep awareness that mystical theology, according to Plato’s definition and to its original, authentic meaning, signifies wisdom and knowledge of that which is universal. [http://www.etgallery.co.il/exhibition-seat/Telaviv/]


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http://www.tobiarava.com

 





Melancholy can smile. Sorrow cannot.

18 04 2014
 
“Melancholy can smile. Sorrow cannot. And smiling is the legacy of my tribe.”
– Friedrich Torberg in Tante Jolesch  [http://www.viennareview.net/vienna-review-book-reviews/torberg-in-exile]

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LISTEN here to Basil Rathbone read The Selfish Giant:

 

 

 





LOVE is how the LIGHT gets in

26 03 2014

all of these artists will all be performing here: http://howthelightgetsin.iai.tv/

Mr. Scruff also sells tea. Proceeds go to charity. Check it out. http://www.makeusabrew.com/showscreen.php?site_id=20&screentype=site&screenid=20

 

“Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori”

The poem from which the line comes exhorts Roman citizens to develop martial prowess such that the enemies of Rome will be too terrified to resist them. In John Conington‘s translation, the relevant passage reads:

To suffer hardness with good cheer,
In sternest school of warfare bred,
Our youth should learn; let steed and spear
Make him one day the Parthian’s dread;
Cold skies, keen perils, brace his life.
Methinks I see from rampired town
Some battling tyrant’s matron wife,
Some maiden, look in terror down,—
“Ah, my dear lord, untrain’d in war!
O tempt not the infuriate mood
Of that fell lion I see! from far
He plunges through a tide of blood!”
What joy, for fatherland to die!
Death’s darts e’en flying feet o’ertake,
Nor spare a recreant chivalry,
A back that cowers, or loins that quake.

(thank you wikipedia for always being there for me when i need you)

 

Afro-Beat Collective, explores the need and importance of exploring for the sake of exploring…”The objective is to to create music derived from a deliberate intention to transmit a message of determination, substance and, most importantly, Unity. To see music as One World, a musical space that transcends and breaks free from styles and any kind of sound that compromises the skills of the musicians playing and the importance of musicianship or group collaboration and expression.” – HENRY COLE & AFROBEAT COLLECTIVE

 





Calling all mothers

9 01 2010

Author: girlwithoutawatch

I think one of the most frustrating aspects of becoming a mother is that so much of what we really experience on a daily basis remains an untold story.

‘Happiness is only real when shared.’

This was the last sentence written in the journal of a young man who decided to explore the depths of solitude by way of excluding himself from society; the poor guy ended up dying alone in the wilderness of Alaska. During his time in the wild, he learned skills that he never thought were in his capacity; he gained an intimacy with his environment by observing and analyzing the behaviour of the rough country that surrounded him. During the two years he spent in isolation, there were moments of spectacular significance. Life expressed itself time and time again in completely unexpected ways—there were beautiful as well as brutal surprises and harsh lessons learned.

Unfortunately, however—without anyone there to experience these moments with him—such significant moments invariably lost much of their unique importance. Sadly for him, it was only at the end of his journey when he realized that happiness is only real when shared.

Of course motherhood does not equate to living on one’s own in the Alaskan wilderness. But there is often an extreme sense of isolation that comes from staying at home with one’s children. There are playgroups, meeting up with friends in the park or at the local café for cappuccinos and babyccinos, but most mums we know never manage to string more than a few sentences together before being distracted by a child falling or screaming or hitting or putting something dangerous or dirty in its mouth.

Then there are the husbands/partners, who are (for the most part) eager to hear about the trials and tribulations of the day, eager to hear about these so-called significant moments that we experience with the children.  What we often find is that recounting these moments isn’t easy at the end of a long day.

No, that’s not right. Recounting the moments themselves isn’t difficult but explaining their significance is a much harder task.

Our explanations require the time and the space to philosophise and to add context, in order to provide greater meaning to our seemingly routine activities and linkages to the goings-on of the world around us. Perhaps we begin to doubt our ability to do this when even reading an occasional newspaper seems to be a near-impossible achievement.

But I believe there are concepts that do not require linkages to current affairs or to contexts that are implicitly understood by our partners. Our daily rituals and adventures contain universal concepts that we all relate to and that we all question. If we can harness what we learn and what we think about on a day-to-day basis—all those thoughts we currently allow to be only fleeting—if we can use and link these ideas to more universal concepts, than perhaps our moments of happiness can more easily be shared with others inevitably making our own happiness feel more real.

This blog will be dedicated to the search for such a space–in my average every-day-ness. It will be my attempt of being-in-the-world.

I welcome anyone and everyone to be in this world with me and share anecdotes, thoughts, wishes, just about whatever they fancy.