Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hollow ween


there is an emptiness
at the center of life
that is very full

and words can't eat that
trick nor treat
can bring the words to life,

they point tho,
they point:

no hurry

you are already there


Saturday, October 27, 2012

The joy of being wrong: This time about Bikram yoga

I got into an interesting
semi embroglio
with a friend about Bikram yoga
a few weeks back

and spouted the
inner message/ judgment/ cutoff
I had in my head:

that it was too clunky
and rough
and disrespectful of the beauty of
real people
in real movement

Then I realized,
that the semi embrog
was about my wanting to divert from something
more important

that I could be wrong

I decided to take up one of these lovely
"Try it out for a month for $49
expecting it to be the sloppy mess
I had it in my head

well, it was hot
I had that right

and they push you hard,
I had that right

but the structure
was far more amazing than I'd

and there was stuff I couldn't do
that I used to be able
and that showed me
.... hmmm, there's some learning
to be had

and there were a lot more rests
than I'd remembered,
and rests are super important

and the emphasis on the spine
and taking poses to intermediate levels
and the abundance of balance poses

it was good

it almost killed me the first two
but that, too,
isn't so bad

because it was set up so it would
be hard to hurt yourself,
except coming out of Camel too fast,
which they don't warn or guide you through

it's all much safer than the average yoga class,
strangely enough


I was wrong

I'm not "in love"
with Bikram
but like it as a possible
was to spend a week a month,

of course, of course,
from a Feldenkrais and Anat Baniel perspective,
a lot more learning could take place,
but they aren't a learning system

they are a training system,
most specifically training the spine
to be more flexible

not bad
not bad at all

Friday, October 19, 2012

Movement lesson on the side: spine via arm, spine via knee

Please lie on your side, very comfortably on a firm bed, or the floor,
or a mellow sections of sand or grass

Pick the preferred, "automatic" side

Rest your head on a pillow, or folded clothes, anything to keep you neck
in a straight line with your spine

Relax into gravity

Now try four sets of movements:

1. Moving the top arm forward (the direction the chest and nose
is called forward) and back
As if reaching for something

2. Move the top knee forward, over the "edge"of the bottom
keeping the ankles together
And then bring the top knee back

3. Move both arm and knee forward and back together

4. Move arm and knee in opposition:
i.e. knee forward, while arm move back
arm forward while knee moves back

In each movement:

Rest between each single execution.

Do each movement slowly
with attention
with as little effort as possible
with as much attention as possible
with as much pleasure as possible

And add in learning:
Notice in all of the movements,
what happens in your spine,
and the other parts of you

In each movement:
try for a slightly different awareness every single time

Go very slowly

"Initiate" the movements from different places:
the spine, the shoulder, the ribs, the hand, for the top movement

the spine, the hip, the knee, even the ribs for the bottom movement

Try subtle variations and feel, as sensation, the difference.

Do some breathing in, some breathing out, some breath held.

Some with back arched, some with back rounded, some with back neutral.

Less, less, less is more.

Take a lot of time.

Rest for 2 or so minutes between each kind of movement,
ie. between 1. and 2.  and 2 and 3
and so on

Feel especially which vertebrae are moving
and how much
and in what sequence

Try for pleasure

all along.

After playing in this learning and awakening way
with all four movements,
either rest in this position,
or on your back,
and feel the differences side to side

Take a nap even

Later, sit up
and feel the differences side to side

Then stand up,
and walk,
and feel the differences side to side



Tuesday, October 16, 2012

I'm so wonderful, you're so wonderful, life is good. then we die.

I really like my tag line:
"Life is Yes, and Can get Better and Better and Better"

It's already perfection
you and me
in all our
fucked up ness

in all our imperfection

in all my imperfection,
if I just ("JUST"!) come
back to the present
I'm sitting, standing, lying, moving
in the middle of
the most amazing miracle of all:
I'm alive,

and alive
and aware
of being alive

that's enough,

if I'm in a bad mood,
there's always a story behind it

the story is never in the present

it's "baggage" of words
trotting along,
hijacking my life

my thoughts aren't me

your thoughts aren't you

the "you're all fucked up" story
we trot out,
drag out,
fling out,
puke out

about ourselves and others is

good old Byron Katie and her first question:

just asking ourselves that
can calm
and bring us back to the glory of being
in the world
without a story

today's the Monday of this Monday
of your life

actually, it's Tuesday
and I've already gotten hell
from someone for getting that wrong

oh, well.
life is good

even if I am imperfect and forget that
today is a Monday called Tuesday
and someone gets angry at me about that

and how many "mistakes" can you make
on this Monday/ Tuesday

and how much now can you love
and lust
and turn on
as you do?

happy whatever the hell day
it is

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Blind Deficit Disorder World, Seeing in a Blind World

From the Wayseers,
by Garret John LoPorto

"A Vital Breakthrough for Free-Spirits, Visionaries, Misfits, Rebels and Pioneers"

Seeing in a Blind World

Imagine a world where just about everyone is born blind and you are one of the only ones who can see. Because blindness is pervasive, human culture in this imaginary world has developed a blindness for blindness. People would not even realize they were missing a key sense.

As a child growing up with working vision in this world you would have some peculiar experiences. When you opened your eyes, you would notice everyone else’s were closed. When you described your ability to “see” you would be placated, ignored and told you had an overactive imagination. Eventually, at quite a young age, you would probably become uncomfortable with keeping your eyes open – because your vision would prompt you to say and do things that disturbed and upset your parents and teachers and peers – so you would learn to close your eyes like everyone else just to feel more in harmony with your community.

Your well-meaning, but blind parents and teachers, would insist on teaching you critical life skills for the blind. The academic disciplines of groping, stick tapping and pace counting would be beaten into you “for your own good”. You would try to do things like open your eyes and walk to where you wanted to go, and at first a parent or teacher might have thought you were a very advanced pace counter; but when they discovered that you didn’t know how many paces you’d traveled, you would be reprimanded for being careless, impulsive and foolish. “Just walking freely” without the use of proper blind navigation strategies such as stick tapping or pace counting would be seen as reckless, irresponsible and dangerous to yourself and others.

You found all of these blind navigation strategies very hard to focus on with your eyes open, because they were so unnecessary with working vision. Your teachers may have complained to your parents that there was something very wrong with you; because you were such a sloppy stick tapper and a forgetful, inattentive counter. You simply wouldn’t focus on your blind navigation studies. Maybe they thought you had ADHD or BNDD (Blind Navigation Deficit Disorder).

At this point your approach to living as a seer in a blind world may have taken one of a couple different directions. The first would have been to acquiesce and become sympathetically blind in some way. You would find that you could tolerate and focus on your blind navigation studies much better with your eyes closed. Plus, you would fit in better and wouldn’t seem so strange to others. There would be no glorious vision to distract you from the pace counting and the stick tapping, which seemed so silly and useless before. Now, it becomes surprisingly essential with your eyes closed. If you had trouble keeping your eyes closed, a family doctor might prescribe you a Blind Navigation Deficit Disorder medication that would chemically blind you for hours at a time, making the discipline to keep your eyes closed and stay focused much easier.

The second course your life could take would be that of a misfit and a rebel. You would say “to hell” with this blind navigation B.S. – you could get where you wanted to go without learning all these “stupid” academics. Maybe instead of dropping out, you still went to class, but you would coast. You would pretend to do the blind navigation, but whenever you got lost you would just open your eyes. You’d lose points for not doing your homework and not “showing your work,” but you could do surprisingly well on tests when you weren’t accused of cheating.

Then as you came of age you might begin to overcome your shame of seeing. You might start to embrace it instead of hiding it. You might muster the inner liberty to throw down your tapping stick and do horrifyingly risky things like running through a forest. You might use your vision to make “impossible” discoveries as far as blind people are concerned. You might solve cases in unexpected ways because you can see things others can’t. You might invent things, change ways of doing things, lead.

You would be heralded as a modern day miracle worker, for

doing what came naturally to you, just because you could see.

“The superior man is the providence of the inferior. He is eyes for the blind, strength for the weak, and a shield for the defenseless. He stands erect by bending above the fallen. He rises by lifting others.”

~ Robert Green Ingersoll

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Grounded....the ground is desire: we want to move because...

This is a rerun
on the exploration of "being grounded."


It's still as simple as noticing
our pull down
into the earth.

And as humans, that is important,
not for the wonderful bliss of knowing we are on planet Earth

but because we want to be non-trees on planet Earth.

We want to MOVE

we want to move to eat,
the play,
to hunt,
to work,
to hug,
to mate

movement is simplicity itself:
we go over there to get something we want
we reach out and bring something to ourselves we want

we want to enjoy a dance together,
we move with
we want to enjoy sex 
we move with
we want to build a house
we pick up, saw, carry, hammer, nail,
we move things around and
create something we want
or get paid to create and we want the money

and any good carpenter wants the
satisfaction of making something that wasn't there before

a painter paints
a poet writes

stuff happens,
moving thoughts
moving emotions
and someone in there,
moving the body

you name it,
almost any it and it's about movement



a baby who can crawl is not the same being
as one who can't crawl

this is where a lot of the "babies are Buddha" people
get a little nutso:

The goal of babies is not hanging out in bliss:
it's eating when they want to eat,
and being held (that's bliss, surely)
crawling across the room to
get the toy
to explore
to get in trouble
to eat the dogfood
to drive their parents crazy

kids want to move in the world

and when they can crawl they are

they know,
hands push down to hold the front part
knees push down to hold the hips up

and this is their transformation:
they know how to PUSH DOWN INTO THE GROUND
in just the right sequence of hand and knee and hip and back
and shoulder and all that good stuff
and that moves them forward

they like that

the are CONNECTED inside,
back to arm to hand to floor
inside back to pelvis to thigh to knee
to floor

it's not that simple
it's really complex
and it's simple to say:
they are grounded because they know feel and use the ground

this is Anat Baniel's first essential in Move into Life
and her children with special needs book:
Kids Beyond Limits

and it's central obviously to the Feldenkrais® work:

Awareness comes thru Movement
we need love enjoy have to move

and until we are in space
we have to move in and in spite of
and in connection with
and in coordination with gravity

this is good
life is good

happy grounded day
happy moving day

let yourself be moved by the glory of

if you wish


Tuesday, October 02, 2012


 Being grounded, means pushing into belly and sternum and rooting in pelvis, and the we can push the head up.
This is learned. It's not a pre program. A huge part of the brain loves/ needs/ organizes around this.
Grounding is for real, until you can into outer space, and the phrase "spaced out," hints at more than might meet the feet.

Recently in a class I was taking, a comment about being grounded came up, and the suggestion was given  that this could be accomplished by sensing the genitals. I thought this nonsense, and want to go about showing how simple "grounded" is.

My prior intro, which delays the meat of the posting, is now at the end.
like a modern novel, or something.

Sensing one's genitals roots us in the sexual yum yum hum hum
of existence, but it doesn't ground us.

The human brain comes out of the birth canal at one fifth its
final size.

A huge amount of what the baby and her brain learn and
expand the first two years is movement,
and it's always movement in gravity,
which means learning to connect to gravity
and how pushing down with the belly allows the head to
lift to vertical that's crucial,

and that's part of learning to be "grounded."
To roll over, by pushing down here, and moving there, again, more connection to "ground"

And then crawling: standing on four limbs in crawling is a super duper
understanding of gravity and the ground in two hands, two wrist,
two shoulders, two hips, two knees. Our hands push into the ground, that holds the head and chest up. Our knees push into the ground, and that hold the butt up. As we crawl, we push backward into the ground to go forward.

no understanding of the ground: no crawling.

In fact, to those wanting to "get more grounded," crawling has a lot
to recommend itself.

As does walking barefoot on the good old Earth.

Grounding can be seen thru the lens of the four parts of One Taste,
mainly these three:

the ground is the ground. Unless you are in space,
you are attracted to the Earth. It's pulling. You're pushing.
Where? Notice.

which is
If sitting now, are hands and feet pressing down into something,
which is pushing back up?
Which side of your pelvis is most pressing down?
Are you leaning back? Then your back is being used as a foot,
which is a shitty use of the back, except when lying down.

The two sitz/ sit bones are good feet substitutes.
Leaning back, in primitive / survival conditions is an invitation: kill me.

If standing, which part of the foot is connected to Earth, or to your shoe or sock
and how does that connection snake/ connect up through your skeleton to your head,
with the eyes and ears and the top?

Sitting, same: pelvic bones to butt flesh to clothes to chair to chair legs to floor, to ......
And up, pelvic to sacrum to spine to ribs, the shoulder blades and head

And so on

And the last guy:

Well, desire to sit up straight can be a conditioned/ finishing school kind of thing,
and it can make you better on horses, if you need to attract an upper class mate,
or stand taller if you want to look better as a breeding partner,
there is this desire:

to not be dead

so it's like this:
conditioned sitting up straight: make others happy/ get approval

sit up to be able to move quickly: an inner happiness, freedom, vitality and survival thing

it's pretty deep,
but without grounding,
in the way of the world of most of humanity over most
of its existence: we get taken down

No grounding,

we get killed,
And there it goes:
no big limbic party fun

there's where the desire can have a lot of fun,

not just in survival,
but moving toward the object of our desire

  let's walk across the room to the one who turns you on....
every step is pressing back into the ground
to push through all your skeleton to
move your forward

simple shit
key to being alive

and attention can get finer and finer:
put weight on insides, outside of feet.
one inside, one outside.
mainly one foot.
mainly one foot and the big toe
mainly one foot and the ring toe

two feet and the toes of one foot and the heels of the other

sound familiar, this increasing of mindfulness by
attending to the details



happy week
happy fall as fall in Austin

happy falling into grace
and now
and ground
and desire

where ever you are


the original start:
I have a friend, a male friend,
with whom friendship is getting deeper and deeper.

We regularly say I love you.
It's a pants on kind of love, and deep, deep,
friendship to the core, to the mud, to the blood,
reason it's so strong is that I can occasionally tell him:
"I love you and you don't know what you're talking about."

(This you may recognize from Moonrise Kingdom,
which I've seen 3 times, which you can guess how much
I like. And this is perhaps my favorite line,
"I love you and you don't know what you are talking about.")

The recent not knowing was a cute and radically upbeat
idea of being grounded,
which was to sense one's genitals.


Sensing one's genitals roots us in the sexual yum yum hum hum
of existence, but it doesn't ground us.

The human brain comes out of the birth canal at one fifth its
final size.