THE BETWIXT AND THE BETWEEN
1 week ago
The mind says ‘mistake. regret. punishment.’
The heart speaks ‘long. ache. grieve’
The body pulses ‘want. want. want’
Yoga answers ‘you are nothing but your breath. exhale’
The legs scream ‘go. run. escape’
The ceiling fan whispers ‘you are still here’
The critic declares ‘not enough. do more’
The practice replies ‘exactly right. infinitely curious. eternally gentle’
The hips protest ‘no. I can’t’
Yoga says ‘release the stories. they do not serve’
The hands grasp ‘hold tight. don’t let go’
The pose demands ‘loosen. relinquish. release’
The tension says ‘do not move’
The breath says ‘you are free’
The habit pushes ‘control’
The mantra answers ‘surrender’
The spirit cries ‘scared. so scared’
The music sings ‘every little thing’s gonna be alright’
The head whispers ‘afraid of shadows’
Yoga answers ‘you are nothing but light’
The muscles complain ‘so tired’
Savasana responds ‘rest now. be still.’
The fear says ‘ordinary’
Namaste reminds ‘divine. divine. divine’
The self says ‘I am here’
Yoga says ‘yes, you are’
3 weeks ago
October playlist: ☛ WEIRD TWITTER COVEN ☚
For all your #cuteandcreepy Halloween needs. This playlist is a bit self-indulgent — I could do this in my sleep, being a big fan of witch house back in the day — but it has its roots in an essay I encountered earlier this year, in which Pam Grossman of Phantasmaphile named 2013 the Year of the Witch:
The numerological symbolism was obvious of course: 13 moons in a year, 13 fertility cycles, 13 witches in a coven. It’s a number considered unlucky and unlovely for so long, we’ve seemed to have forgotten why, while still obliterating it from our tallest buildings. And so it’s a number inherently bound up in feminine magic, and thus represents a deification of something persecuted; a profanity resacralized, unsullied and crowned.
The archetype of the witch is long overdue for celebration. Daughters, mothers, queens, virgins, wives, et al. derive meaning from their relation to another person. Witches, on the other hand, have power on their own terms. They create. They praise. They commune with nature / Spirit / God/dess / Choose-your-own-semantics, freely, and free of any mediator. But most importantly: they make things happen. The best definition of magic I’ve been able to come up with is “symbolic action with intent” – “action” being the operative word. Witches are midwives to metamorphosis. They are magical women, and they, quite literally, change the world.
So for 2013, I wish you more witching. More opportunities to claim your power, to slough off old skin, to ritualize your life. May your year have you feeling more attuned to the rhythms of nature, more connected to one another, and more plugged into planet and purpose. The apocalypse has happened, my friends, and it’s still happening. Our task at hand is to bring about the end of the old world, but then to create something vital and shining and new. Instead of four horses, we’re riding in on brooms.
This proclamation resonated so deeply with me that the obvious thing to do at the time was to make a digital shrine to the idea. And invoke the power of the witch in my own reality. Not surprising, then, that the most accurate descriptor of my personal 2013 would be awakening. I’ve always been drawn to the magical and the mystical, symbols, archetypes, the lot. But this year I made a more official foray into the world of the occult, esoteric studies and the paranormal, lurking in dark corners like The Midnight Archive, Abraxas Journal, and Occult of Personality, Once you go down that path, well, you start seeing magic everywhere. (don’t worry Mom, being a witch is more about being best friends with nature and your own divine self than it is about conducting blood rituals in the woods at night).
1 month ago1 note
The equinox seems as good a time as any to touch on a subject that has occupied my thoughts for quite some time now. In truth, it’s more of a constellation of observations and musings that cannot easily be distilled into a single idea.
It has become painfully obvious to me that when we deny nature, we deny our own nature — the essence of our being that is gloriously alive, so pulsing with light that to deny it is to live in the dark. By denial I am referring to the entire spectrum of unsustainable behaviors and attitudes towards nature that the culture encourages, from indifference, ignorance and apathy to domination and opposition.
I’ve always been acutely attuned to the subtle signs that mark the approach of a new season. This threshold is a powerful time of creative renewal, a slow exhalation of the planetary consciousness. There’s always that first hint of sap and smoke in the air and the aroma of decaying leaves; slow drips falling on a mossy forest floor; a quiet gathering of strength and turning inward as the leaves crisp like gilded paper, falling on hungry damp earth in which myriad creatures burrow deeper, dreaming of winter. In Sweden the change was much more pronounced. I remember cycling past hedges lit from within like fire; picking wild green apples off the tree below my window; leaving classes in the gloaming, ravens gathering in the bare branches for their own secret councils.
Now, so distant from all that (domesticated) beauty, I crave wilderness. I feel starved for it, homesick for a landscape I never even knew.
2 months ago3 notes
A soundtrack for the deep web. A dive into the deep end of whatever it is we’re doing now as humans/posthumans. Wandering the crossroads of technology, aesthetics and psychedelics — a place where anonymity, manufactured alienation, augmented intelligence, alternate realities, and illicit modes of consciousness converge. Silk Road as metaphor, music as a drug. A twisted path that goes on forever, inspired by the mythological Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, serpentine imagery and the literal ancient trade routes:
2 months ago
Accidentally just spent the entire weekend researching exopolitics. This sudden fascination actually comes as a bit of a shock. I once observed that as an infant I totally resembled an alien — now a longstanding joke in my family — but my relationship with extraterrestrial mythology apart from The X-Files has been challenging. Count me among those for whom E.T. stands for Extremely Terrifying #childhoodruined.
4 months ago5 notes
I’m nearly finished with Nicco Mele's The End of Big: How the Internet Makes David the New Goliath — a cursory survey of the opportunities and threats that disruptive technology brings. In nine sections with titles like ‘BIG NEWS’, ‘BIG FUN’, ‘BIG ARMIES’, and ‘BIG MINDS’, Mele breaks down all the ways that ‘radical connectivity’ is eroding nearly all of the Big with a capital B institutions. He is wary of the Silicon Valley school of techno-optimism, a ‘burn it all down’ mentality which sees anti-establishment innovation as progressive almost by default and gives little consideration to the potential chaos that could ensue when many of these corporate or bureaucratic dinosaurs inevitably crash and burn. Corrupt, inefficient, irrelevant, and ineffective as the current system is, Mele is insistent that we need to be having a national conversation about creating the new social infrastructure — or ‘platform’, as inspired by Tim O’Reilly’s digital manifesto— that leverages the democratizing power of opensource/p2p/distributed networks while forging the kind of shared public space and civic engagement that our society so desperately needs.
4 months ago
#shinynew HIGH SUMMER playlist
A lifelong obsession with innovation has prompted me to give a lot of thought to its twin, productivity. The myriad apps and other tools available for hypermanaging and quantifying and mapping one’s personal data (both physical and digital) generally don’t appeal to me. As much as I am fascinated by technology, I’m drawn to a more holistic method, or perhaps anti-method. I admittedly spend far more time thinking about being productive than actually being productive. But I find the relatively ‘simple’ and ‘low-tech’ approaches to be the most sustainable and effective (the term low-tech is itself troublesome; I suspect that in the future we’ll increasingly appreciate that biology is the best ‘technology’ there is and our technological systems will be shaped by nature rather than nature being shaped to our needs, such that the distinction becomes ever more ambiguous; indeed, this evolution is already underway).
I found Marie Forleo’s response to a question about following through with personal projects to be incredibly helpful. Marie’s protips: Make follow-through a habit. It’s deceptively simple but draws on powerful biological systems to be effective. When something becomes habitual, you don’t have to exert any extra effort or rely on a limited supply of willpower to get it done. Take your promises to yourself every bit as seriously as you take your promises to others. ‘Go pro’ with your own projects: a professional can’t afford to drop the ball. As appealing as it is to merely dabble in a pursuit or interest, you’ll likely get far more satisfaction out of a serious commitment.
5 months ago1 note
Basstastic new playlist heavily featuring current leaders of the pack Zomby, Disclosure, Surkin and Yeezus. Perfect antidote for the disgust you’ve inevitably been feeling about the US government’s terror tactics and absurd levels of headfuckery.
These past few weeks have surely been every conspiracy theorist’s wet dream, as Edward Snowden vindicated all suspicions of the American surveillance state, revealing its extent layer by devastating layer: “but wait, it gets worse!”. It still feels like we’ve barely scratched the surface.
Transition Voice delves into the implications of surveillance on free speech, mentioning the NSA’s targeting of climate activists (strike one against me):
No less than The Guardian and Grist have reported that one of the express goals of the NSA’s Prism project is to track climate and environmental activists to, I dunno, be ready to swoop in in riot gear and haul off the little dreadlock-sporting do-gooders into some Guantanamo-like place where they can no longer thwart plans for the tar sands utopia of Big Energy. Surely this place will be powered by coal and serve only Monsanto-sanctioned GMOs, petri-dish spawned salmon, and dwarf hybridized wheat with super-plus extra gluten.
The media is of course doing its best to brand the PRISM fiasco as a Bourne/Sandiego-esque chase scene, presumably so that we don’t have a chance to catch our breath and think seriously about the content of Snowden’s disclosures.
5 months ago
So I’ve been sitting on this massive digital stack of material I’ve been intending to blog about, and the more things pile up the longer I’ve put off actually writing anything. Not a good strategy, for the record. What I’m trying to say is that I have a lot of ideas but find follow-through very tedious. A common affliction. Also, if someone else can say it better, why bother, really? So I was thinking I would just leave All The Things here and get rid of them all in one fell swoop, as it were. Plus a lot of them are a bit old and stale by now and ideas are like gardens: you have to pull the weeds.
5 months ago2 notes