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Showing posts from August, 2011

The meditative power of balancing rocks [PICS]

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Michael Grab is a veteran at doing the impossible. [Editor's note: After first posting about Gravity Gluehere, I was so inspired by the video that I headed out to a creek days later and tried rock balancing myself. It's strangely addictive and very internal. Everything else becomes still and the focus is intense. When I'd snap out of it, I had the same feeling I get after a session of yoga or meditation. I recommend the next time you find yourself with the opportunity, to take advantage. - Carlo]I BALANCE ROCKS for a number of reasons. My initial attraction was the good feeling it gave me; the meditative aspect is relaxing. That is the fundamental basis for my continued practice. As I did it more, I noticed that small crowds would start gathering to watch. There is a mutual creation that begins once people are watching. What I do next is often influenced by spectators. Its almost as if they feed off the energy surrounding the gardens, but simultaneously my creative flow fee…

Im trying to be compassionate, dammit!

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Photo: adrielsocrates Did you know theres a website you can go to to anonymously vent or listen to someone vent? ITS CALLED Compassion Pit. Its simple. You dont have to register or log in or post anything about yourself. You simply go there and choose to be either a Venter or a Listener. Ive worked hard on being an understanding person. I guess you could say I have a passion for compassion. Its something Im very conscious about and I like to exercise it in my daily life, both with people I interact with and people I dont. I even tried to practice compassion for the hooligans and looters who burned cars and smashed windows in Vancouver during the Stanley Cup riots.What a great way to extend this, I thought, via the web. I could practice compassion in a tangible way toward people from god knows where. I clicked on Listener. Then I waited. click to enlarge Not sure what happened there. Did she get freaked out that I was a first-time Listener? Maybe as a first-time Venter she thought at leas…

What you might not know about Ramadan

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Photos by author Baxter Jackson unveils a side of Ramadan that might surprise you. THE FIRST TIME a grown man ever kissed me was during Ramadan. I was at a posh all-night iftar buffet in the dusty outskirts of Cairo with my fiance, Kristina, when I ran into Mohammed, an Egyptian acquaintance of mine.He greeted me with a smile as warm as the night air. His arms, open. Kristina saw the panic in my eyes but shouldered me toward him anyway, giggling in anticipation of what she knew Id been trying to avoid.He leaned in for the customary Arab man-hug. The stubble of his cheeks pressed against my own, his pursed lips firmly planting on both of my cheeks first the right, then the left. After hed finished greeting me, he continued to hold me at arm length, looking at me puzzled.Its my first time being kissed by a grown man, I explained. He and Kristina both burst out laughing. He patted me on the back and told me get used to it cause, after all, This is Ramadan, habeebi.Ramadan and I just dont…

Notes on balancing effort and surrender

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Photo: Cold Hearted Saint THE WORD FLOW is an oft-heard one around the city of Nelson. Lets just see how it flows. Im just gonna flow and see where it takes me. Its one of the reasons I love it here. But sometimes it can get to be too much. I have a friend that I havent seen all summer. She lives about a 15-minute walk from me and has no cell phone. Id love to see her and catch up, but efforts to make plans never seem to take. She usually ends these efforts with something like, Lets flow with it, itll work out.One of the quintessential Kootenay* summer experiences is to float down the Slocan River on a hot, sunny day, sitting in an inflatable tube/chair/boat/whatever, drinks (alcoholic or not) tied and immersed in the cold water, friends to laugh with and make should you choose to. In yoga today, our instructor who had done the float twice in the past week was talking about flow. Most of the time the river guides you to where to need to go, but sometimes you need to put in some muscl…

How to win the lottery

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Are you passionate about playing the lottery? FIRST STEP: Change your mindset. As Bashar says, there is a profound difference between the idea of having your numbers match reality vs. reality matching your numbers. When we say, I hope I pick the winning numbers we speak as though the numbers are already drawn.More importantly though, he says, what were actually doing when we play the lottery is processing our relationship to wealth and abundance. On the surface, we may think that what we really want is to win those millions of dollars. But, he claims, like with anything else, passion manifests itself into reality and, for many who play, there is no real passion in the lottery. The passion lies in doing whatever winning the lottery could afford us to do.When you play the lottery, play it to allow yourself to get in touch with your relationship with wealth and be in the state that you prefer to be, and you will win every time in some way. When winning in any way becomes equal to winni…

Islams largest nation disgusted by the judgment of its holiest

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Photo by Please! Don't Smile The hardline, Wahhabist followers of Islam in Saudi Arabia bump heads spectacularly with the government of Indonesia. THE FUROR BEGAN with the beheading of Ruyati binti Satubi, a 54-year-old Indonesian grandmother, after she was convicted of stabbing her employer by a Saudi court. In truth though, the seeds of the anger that saw Indonesia recalling its ambassador to Riyadh and suspending nationals from leaving to work in Saudi Arabia go much, much deeper. Satubis death was a perfect storm born of fundamentally different perspectives within the faith, and less metaphysically anger at what many Indonesians see as the horrific treatment of foreign workers by their Saudi employers.Saudi Arabia has, for a long time, been held in a stable political arrangement by an effective bargain between the ruling family and Wahhabist puritanicals. The ruling family gets a religious endorsement, while one of the strictest subgroups of broader Islam gets a free hand on r…

The end of money (and the return of the gift)

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Amid the growing crisis of our age, Charles Eisenstein offers an illuminating idea: to change the world we must change our money. From the introduction of his new book Sacred Economics: IT IS HUGELY IRONIC and hugely significant that the one thing on the planet most closely resembling the forgoing conception of the divine is money. It is an invisible, immortal force that surrounds and steers all things, omnipotent and limitless, an invisible hand that, it is said, makes the world go round. Yet, money today is an abstraction, at most symbols on a piece of paper but usually mere bits in a computer. It exists in a realm far removed from materiality. In that realm, it is exempt from natures most important laws, for it does not decay and return to the soil as all other things do, but is rather preserved, changeless, in its vaults and computer files, even growing with time thanks to interest. It bears the properties of eternal preservation and everlasting increase, both of which are profound…